I argue that the political and economic domains are analogous for distributive purposes. The upshot of this conclusion is that because we normally think that an unequal distribution of votes is objectionable even if these inequalities are strictly necessary to improve the lives of less informed voters, so we should conclude that an unequal distribution of resources might be similarly objectionable even if strictly necessary to make the worse off better off. Leveling down economic resources is therefore sometimes morally permissible. (...) I consider and reject three types of objections to this view. (shrink)
Assessing what counts as infertility has practical implications: access to (state-funded) fertility treatment is usually premised on meeting the criteria that constitute the chosen definition of infertility. In this paper, I argue that we should adopt the expression “involuntary childlessness” to discuss the normative dimensions of people’s inability to conceive. Once this conceptualization is adopted, it becomes clear that there exists a mismatch between those who experience involuntary childlessness and those that are currently able to access fertility treatment. My concern (...) in this article is explaining why such a mismatch deserves attention and what reasons can be advanced to justify addressing it. My case rests on a three-part argument: that there are good reasons to address the suffering associated with involuntary childlessness; that people would decide to insure against it; and that involuntary childlessness is characterized by a prima facie exceptional kind of desire. (shrink)
Universal Basic Income has become a popular idea in the last few decades even though one can find its roots in the earlier centuries. In this thesis, I have examined the position of UBI in the works of the most influential contemporary philosophers. By connecting the idea of UBI with some certain concepts from different philosophers, I aimed to improve the overall understanding of UBI. I have mentioned the concepts such as "labor", "leisure", "idleness", "boredom", "poverty", "inequality", "distribution", "happiness", "power", (...) "needs", "truth", "alienation", etc. I have used a literature methodology for my research. I have tried to read and relate the concept of UBI with the works of 10 philosophers: Arthur Schopenhauer, Karl Marx, William James, Bertrand Russell, Michel Foucault, John Rawls, Robert Nozick, Noam Chomsky, Slavoj Zizek, Peter Singer. (shrink)
Understanding how recorded and amplified stage musics contribute towards producing the Anthropocene necessitates attending to complex transnational flows of material, capital and labor, and how they coalesce into technological objects. This is complicated by the wide array of sites, practices and knowledges involved during various stages of the production process, from initial resource extraction, to smelting, component manufacturing, technology assembly, and distribution. To develop a suitable technological ethics, and to understand what happens to environments and to human, animal and plant (...) lifeworlds, requires one to resist abstraction and undertake a global accounting of resource ecologies with recourse to planetary-scale political economy. Towards this goal, I provide a partial account of an early 2000s mic preamp, a mundane but nonetheless fetishised recording studio technological object. I focus on two metals, tin and tantalum, that are primarily extracted for electronics manufacturing, and two building blocks of electronics, solder and capacitors, which are essential for making contemporary electronics. (shrink)
To address climate change fairly, many conflicting claims over natural resources must be balanced against one another. This has long been obvious in the case of fossil fuels and greenhouse gas sinks including the atmosphere and forests; but it is ever more apparent that responses to climate change also threaten to spur new competition over land and extractive resources. This makes climate change an instance of a broader, more enduring and - for many - all too familiar problem: the problem (...) of human conflict over how the natural world should be cared for, protected, shared, used, and managed. -/- This work develops a new theory of global egalitarianism concerning natural resources, rejecting both permanent sovereignty and equal division, which is then used to examine the problem of climate change. It formulates principles of resource right designed to protect the ability of all human beings to satisfy their basic needs as members of self-determining political communities, where it is understood that the genuine exercise of collective self-determination is not possible from a position of significant disadvantage in global wealth and power relations. These principles are used to address the question of where to set the ceiling on future greenhouse gas emissions and how to share the resulting emissions budget, in the face of conflicting claims to fossil fuels, climate sinks, and land. It is also used to defend an unorthodox understanding of responsibility for climate change as a problem of global justice, based on its provenance in historical injustice concerning natural resources. (shrink)
Equality as a bare concept refers to two or more distinct things or people being the same in some dimension. Different forms of equality are distinguished by the dimension that is held to be the same. Within political theory, three main forms of equality can be distinguished: moral equality, political equality, and substantive equality. “Moral equality” refers to each individual having the same inherent dignity as a human being, and therefore being worthy of respect. “Political equality,” by contrast, refers to (...) each individual having the same basic rights of involvement in political processes, e.g., by voting or running for office. Modern political theories generally accept that each individual has moral and political equality. The distinguishing feature of egalitarianism is its interpretation of this equal status as requiring substantive equality, i.e., that each individual be placed in the same social or economic conditions. Egalitarianism is an inherently normative view, and more specifically, a view about distributive justice—that is, about the appropriate distribution of benefits and burdens. The account of these benefits and burdens varies from one egalitarian theory to another. For instance, some egalitarians believe that levels of benefit should be measured in terms of resources, others in terms of well-being, and still others in terms of basic capabilities. Egalitarians also disagree on whether benefits should be distributed equally or whether equality of substantive condition in some other sense (i.e., equal opportunity or equal social standing) might be sufficient. Accordingly, each egalitarian theory has its own account of equality. These theories as a whole contrast with non-egalitarian theories, such as right libertarianism or conservativism, which deny that people’s condition should be made equal in any substantive sense. In practical terms, egalitarianism is strongly associated with the political left, but different brands of egalitarianism are associated with different brands of left-wing politics, from traditional socialism or social democracy to a less distribution-focused politics of identity. This article provides an overview of egalitarianism, primarily focusing on its development in contemporary political theory. (shrink)
The phenomenon of corruption is a cancer that affects our country and that it is necessary to eradicate; This dilutes the opportunities for economic and social development, privileging the single conjunction of particular interests, political actors in non-legal agreements for their own benefit, which lead to acts of corruption. Recent studies indicate that the level of corruption present in a political system is directly related to the type of institutional structure that defines it (Boehm and Lambsdorff, 2009), as well as (...) the ineffectiveness of the control organisms (Casar, 2015; Cárdenas, 2010, Rojas, 2010, Carbonell, 2009, Restrepo, 2004), which requires citizen action to combat corruption (Sandoval, 2010, Villanueva, 2006). This work, focuses our attention on the federal public administration, presenting as a proposal to empower the citizen action in the fight against corruption and in the National Anticorruption System; the figure of Whistleblowers or generator of citizen alert, based on two fundamental principles: i) recognizing the citizen's obligation to report acts of corruption and ii) the granting by the authority of witness protection. These two actions will result in two important results: i) Consolidate the citizen's complaint to inform society about acts of corruption and ii) and the exercise of freedom of information so that society is able to be informed about acts of corruption. These actions will allow promoting and consolidating a culture of reporting acts of corruption that may constitute a crime as a fundamental pillar in the National Anticorruption System in Mexico. (shrink)
This paper reviews the recent literature on exploitation. It distinguishes between three main species of exploitation theory: teleology-based accounts, respect-based accounts, and freedom-based accounts. It then addresses the implications of each.
Climate change policy decisions are inescapably intertwined with future generations. Even if all carbon dioxide emissions were to be stopped today, most aspects of climate change would persist for hundreds of years, thus inevitably raising questions of intergenerational justice and sustainability. -/- The chapter begins with a short overview of discount rate debate in climate economics, followed by the observation that discounting implicitly makes the assumption that natural capital is always substitutable with man-made capital. The chapter explains why non-substitutability matters (...) if we are to take intergenerational justice seriously and invest aptly in mitigation. Non-substitutability simply implies that there are some forms of capital that cannot be substituted by another, and so consumption of one cannot be compensated with additional stocks of the other. The non-substitutability of critical natural capital can be defended without empirical data about preferences or the need to view the environment as a superior good, and the argument is presented through the language of keeping options open. -/- Those alive today make decisions about what natural capital to use and what to save for future. These choices are often represented as different points in a continuum of sustainability: weak sustainability is associated with a high degree of substitutability and therefore a lot of flexibility over what capital to consume, whereas strong sustainability is more stringent on substitutability. While it may be that in economical understanding weak and strong sustainability collapse into one another, philosophically the emphasis is slightly different. The chapter discusses how normative sustainability can be supported without ignoring opportunity costs and trade-offs. (shrink)
Systemic financial risk is one of the most significant collective action problems facing societies. The Great Recession brought attention to a tragedy of the commons in capital markets, in which market participants, from the first-time homebuyer to Wall Street financiers, acted in ways beneficial to themselves individually, but which together caused substantial collective harm. Two kinds of risk are at play in complex chains of transactions in financial markets: ordinary market risk and systemic risk. Two moral questions are relevant in (...) such cases. First, from the standpoint of interactional morality, does a person have a moral duty to avoid risk of harm to others if their financial transactions contribute in some way, however small, to the loss or harm? This article identifies the conditions in which persons are morally responsible in such cases. Second, from the standpoint of institutional morality, how should society distribute the risk of harm associated with massively complex financial markets? This question is considered in the context of the home mortgage credit market. Luck egalitarianism, in particular a Dworkinian insurance scheme to allocate risks and resources relating to mortgage credit and private home ownership, offers substantial promise. (shrink)
What level of government subsidy of higher education is justified, in what form, and for what reasons? We answer these questions by applying the hypothetical insurance approach, originally developed by Ronald Dworkin in his work on distributive justice. On this approach, when asking how to fund and deliver public services in a particular domain, we should seek to model what would be the outcome of a hypothetical insurance market: we stipulate that participants lack knowledge about their specific resources and risks, (...) and ask what insurance contracts they would take out to secure different types of benefit and protection in the domain in question. The great benefit of the hypothetical insurance approach is that it allows us to take apparently intractable questions about interpersonal distribution and transform them into questions about intrapersonal distributions: that is, questions about how an individual would choose to distribute risks and resources across the various lives that they might end up living, in light of their individual ambitions and preferences. Applying this approach to higher education, we argue that the UK model of higher education funding in which the costs of an individual's higher education are shared between general taxation and the individual herself, with the latter element to be paid retrospectively through an income-contingent state-backed loan, is vindicated as just. In particular, we argue that it is more just than alternatives such as a graduate tax, full funding through general taxation, and full privatisation. (shrink)
Equality for Inegalitarians, by George Sher, Cambridge University Press, 2014. Luck egalitarianism has been a leading view in analytic political philosophy since it rose to prominence in the 1980s and 1990s. The theory holds that economic inequalities are acceptable when they are the result of choice but those due to luck should be redistributed away. Proponents generally favour extensive redistribution, on the grounds that luck -- including the luck of being born with a lucrative talent -- plays an extensive role (...) in economic affairs. If libertarians and other defenders of property rights have long appealed to choice and effort as grounds for not redistributing wealth, the novel twist of luck egalitarianism is that it appeals to the same underlying principles, the role of choice, to make the case for extensive redistribution. The term “luck egalitarianism” was coined by a critic, Elizabeth Anderson, who challenged the theory in a famous 1999 article, “What is the Point of Equality?” George Sher’s excellent book picks up where Anderson left off. According to Sher, despite its prominence and many nimble defenders, luck egalitarianism rests on philosophically dubious foundations. We should reject it, Sher argues, in favour of a philosophy that seeks, not to neutralize the role of luck in political and economic life, but one that instead tries to ensure that people are well-enough off to live their lives effectively. (shrink)
In this review, I say a few words about the analysis portion of Piketty’s book, but I will focus mostly on its solution portion. In the first section, I go over Piketty’s main argument and make two critical points: there is a lack of consideration for, first, human capital and, second, absolute levels of income and capital per capita. The second section of this essay focuses on the solution portion of the book. I also go over Piketty’s argument and make (...) five more substantial points: I wonder what Piketty means by social justice; I emphasize that raising taxes is desirable; I ask why it is capital that should be taxed, and how feasible a global tax on capital would be; and finally, I claim that the book could provide more guidance in terms of the policies that could be put in place right now. If the global taxation of capital is not politically feasible in the short to medium term, what should be done in the meantime? (shrink)
This essay examines the connection between socioeconomic mobility and equality, and argues for two conclusions: (a) Socioeconomic mobility is conceptually distinct from three common species of equality: (1) equality of opportunity, (2) equality of outcome, and (3) relational equality. -/- (b) However, socioeconomic mobility is connected — in different ways — to each species of equality, and, if we value one or more of these species of equality, these connections endow mobility with derivative normative significance.
It has been suggested that the era of genetic interventions will sound the death knell for luck egalitarianism, as it will blur the line between chance and choice, on which theories of distributive justice often rest. By examining the threats posed to these theories, a crucial assumption is exposed; it is assumed that a commitment to the neutralisation of the effects of luck implies the endorsement of even the most morally controversial enhancements. In antithesis, I argue that an attractive theory (...) of luck egalitarianism, Dworkinian liberal equality, enables us to deduce plausible implications for genetic engineering. By focusing on the abstract moral commitments at the heart of Dworkin’s theory, a twofold purpose is served. First, they reveal in what ways the criticisms misfire, thereby safeguarding luck egalitarianism. Second, Dworkinian luck egalitarianism is further strengthened, as it produces plausible guidelines for public policy on genetic engineering in liberal societies. (shrink)
The paper provides an analysis of the relationship between the concepts of justice and solidarity. The point of departure of the analysis is Ruud ter Meulen’s claim that these concepts are different but mutually complementary, i.e. are two sides of the same coin. In the paper two alternative accounts of the relationship are proposed. According to the first one, solidarity can be defined in terms of justice, i.e. is a special variety of liberal justice, viz. social liberal justice, which, apart (...) from the value of liberty, also stresses the importance of the value of equality. An example of such a theory is Rawls’s theory of justice, within which the value of equality is ‘encoded’ in the principle of fair equality of opportunity and in the difference principle. According to the second account, solidarity is an expression of a special type of social relationships – the so-called ‘thick relationships’, which are non-superficial, positive, their paradigmatic examples being family and friendship; in other words, the rules of solidarity are rules that are built into ‘thick relationships’. On the first account, justice and solidarity are not different, while on the second account they are different but mutually exclusive rather than mutually complementary. In the last part of the paper some remarks on the social causes of solidarity are made. (shrink)
A currently popular proposal for fairly distributing emission quotas is the equal shares view, which holds that that emission quotas should be distributed to all human beings globally on an equal per capita basis. In this paper I aim to show that a number of arguments in favour of equal shares are based on a misleading analysis of climate change as a global commons problem. I argue that a correct understanding of the way in which climate change results from the (...) overuse of a global commons shows those who defend equal shares using commons arguments to be harbouring more controversial commitments than might at first appear. I then discuss two options for equal shares theorists who wish to maintain the view in the face of my critique, and attempt to show that one approach holds more promise than the other. (shrink)
This article explores the Rawlsian goal of ensuring that distributions are not influenced by the morally arbitrary. It does so by bringing discussions of distributive justice into contact with the debate over moral luck initiated by Williams and Nagel. Rawls’ own justice as fairness appears to be incompatible with the arbitrariness commitment, as it creates some equalities arbitrarily. A major rival, Dworkin’s version of brute luck egalitarianism, aims to be continuous with ordinary ethics, and so is (a) sensitive to non-philosophical (...) beliefs about free will and responsibility, and (b) allows inequalities to arise on the basis of option luck. But Dworkin does not present convincing reasons in support of continuity, and there are compelling moral reasons for justice to be sensitive to the best philosophical account of free will and responsibility, as is proposed by the revised brute luck egalitarianism of Arneson and Cohen. While Dworkinian brute luck egalitarianism admits three sorts of morally arbitrary disadvantaging which correspond to three forms of moral luck (constitutive, circumstantial, and option luck), revised brute luck egalitarianism does not disadvantage on the basis of constitutive or circumstantial luck. But it is not as sensitive to responsibility as it needs to be to fully extinguish the influence of the morally arbitrary, for persons under it may exercise their responsibility equivalently yet end up with different outcomes on account of option luck. It is concluded that egalitarians should deny the existence of distributive luck, which is luck in the levels of advantage that individuals are due. (shrink)
The current statist order assumes that states have a right to make rules involving the transfer and/or extraction of natural resources within the territory. Cosmopolitan theories of global justice have questioned whether the state is justified in its control over natural resources, typically by pointing out that having resources is a matter of good luck, and this unfairness should be addressed. This paper argues that self-determination does generate a right over resources, which others should not interfere with. It does not (...) entail, however, that there is no obligation on rich countries to redistribute to poor countries. Indeed, in some rare instances, it might be necessary for a particular political community to use its resources, but the presumption is that the collectively self-determining group should have the right to decide that. (shrink)
Liberal egalitarianism is commonly criticized for being insufficiently sensitive to status inequalities and the effects of misrecognition. I examine this criticism as it applies to Ronald Dworkin’s ‘equality of resources’ and argue that, in fact, liberal egalitarians possess the resources to deal effectively with recognition-type issues. More precisely, while conceding that the distributive principles required to realize equality of resources must apply against a particular institutional background, I point out, following Dworkin, that among the principles guiding this background is a (...) ‘principle of independence,’ and that this principle, properly interpreted, requires government to protect people against the disadvantageous effects of wrongful prejudicial discrimination. Moreover, I give an account of wrongful prejudice which is grounded in a particular interpretation of the abstract egalitarian principle Dworkin requires for a government to be legitimate and which goes a long way toward acknowledging status inequalities. Finally, I suggest other resources within the theory for responding to residual problems of recognition not addressed by the principle of independence. (shrink)
G. A. Cohen argues that egalitarians should compensate for expensive tastes or for the fact that they are expensive. Ronald Dworkin, by contrast, regards most expensive tastes as unworthy of compensation — only if a person disidentifies with his own such tastes (i.e. wishes he did not have them) is compensation appropriate. Dworkinians appeal, inter alia, to the so-called ‘first-person’ or ‘continuity’ test. According to the continuity test, an appropriate standard of interpersonal comparison reflects people's own assessment of their relative (...) standing: Person A can only legitimately demand compensation from person B if he regards himself as worse off, all things considered, than B. The typical bearer of expensive tastes does not regard herself as being worse off than others with less expensive tastes. Hence, in the typical case, pace Cohen, compensation for expensive tastes is inappropriate. The article scrutinizes this rationale for not compensating for expensive tastes. Especially, we try to bolster the continuity test by relating it to Dworkin's distinction between integrated and detached values, pointing out that an argument for the continuity test can be built on the assumption that equality has integrated value. In brief, the point is that a metric of equality should be assessed, partly, in virtue of its consequences for related ideals. One of these is the kind of justificatory community promoted by the continuity test. We defend this view against an objection to the effect that equality is a detached value. We conclude that the continuity test constitutes a strong foothold for the resourcist egalitarian reluctance to compensate people for their expensive tastes. (shrink)
This paper uses the exploration of the grounds of a common criticism of luck egalitarianism to try and make an argument about both the proper subject of theorizing about justice and how to approach that subject. It draws a distinction between what it calls basic structure views and a priori baseline views, where the former take the institutional aspects of political prescriptions seriously and the latter do not. It argues that objections to luck egalitarianism on the grounds of its harshness (...) can in part be explained by this blindness to relevant features of institutions. Further, it may be that luck egalitarianism cannot regard its own enactment as just. A related objection to Ronald Dworkin's equality of resources, which claims that it cannot pick a particular institutional background to set the costs of resources and so is radically indeterminate, is also presented. These results, I argue, give us good reason to reject all a priori baseline views. (shrink)
This articles proposes that theories and principles of distributive justice be considered substantively egalitarian iff they satisfy each of three conditions: (1) they consider the bare fact that a person is in certain circumstances to be a conclusive reason for placing another relevantly identically entitled person in the same circumstances, except where this conflicts with other similarly conclusive reasons arising from the circumstances of other persons; (2) they can be stated as 'equality of x for all persons', making no explicit (...) or implicit exclusion of persons or individuals and showing no greater concern and respect for some rather than others; and (3) they pursue equality in a dimension that is valuable to egalitarians. On this construal, prioritarianism and Dworkinian equality of resources, a view often identified as luck egalitarian, are not substantively egalitarian, but equality of opportunity, the standard form of luck egalitarianism, may be. (shrink)
How should we decide which inequalities between people are justified, and which are unjustified? One answer is that such inequalities are only justified where there is a corresponding variation in responsible action or choice on the part of the persons concerned. This view, which has become known as 'luck egalitarianism', has come to occupy a central place in recent debates about distributive justice. This book is the first full length treatment of this significant development in contemporary political philosophy. Each of (...) its three parts addresses a key question concerning the theory. Which version of luck egalitarian comes closest to realizing luck egalitarian objectives? Does luck egalitarianism succeed as a view of egalitarian justice? And is it sound as an account of distributive justice in general? The book provides a distinctive answer to each of these questions, along the way engaging with the leading theorists identified in the literature as luck egalitarians, such as Richard Arneson, G. A. Cohen, and Ronald Dworkin, as well as the most influential critics, including Elizabeth Anderson, Marc Fleurbaey, Susan Hurley, Samuel Scheffler, and Jonathan Wolff. (shrink)
This chapter contains section titled: I Welfarist and Resourcist Egalitarianism II Resource Egalitarianism and Procreation III Equality of Fortune IV Procreation and the Appeal to Fairness V Internalizing the Effects of Procreation VI Tolerating Externalities Acknowledgement.
In this article I argue against Ronald Dworkin's rejection of the labour auction in his ‘Equality of Resources’. I criticize Dworkin's claims that the talented would envy the untalented in such an auction, and that the talented in particular would be enslaved by it. I identify some ways in which the talent auction is underdescribed and I compare the results for the condition of the talented of different further descriptions of it. I conclude that Dworkin's deviation from the ‘envy test’ (...) criterion results in an inequality between the talented and the untalented which cannot be justified in egalitarian terms. Correspondence:c1 [email protected]. (shrink)
Ronald Dworkin’s argument for resource egalitarianism has as its centerpiece a thought experiment involving a group of shipwreck survivors washed ashore on an uninhabited island, who decide to divide up all of the resources on the island equally using a competitive auction. Unfortunately, Dworkin misunderstands how the auction mechanism works, and so misinterprets its significance for egalitarian political philosophy. First, he makes it seem as though there is a conceptual connection between the ‘envy-freeness’ standard and the auction, when in fact (...) there is none. Second, he fails to appreciate how idealized the conditions are that must be satisfied in order for his results to obtain. This leads him to draw practical conclusions from the thought experiment that do not follow, such as his claim that the principle of equality generates a presumption in favor of the market as a mechanism for the distribution of resources. The result is that Dworkin saddles resource egalitarianism with a set of commitments that are, in fact, inessential to that view. (shrink)
This chapter contains section titled: I The Extended Auction II Working in the Peep Show, Flirting in the Square III Insurance Behind a Veil of Ignorance IV Dworkin's Hybrid Scheme V Four Objections to Dworkin VI Ackerman Generalized VII Not Enough Redistribution? VIII Too Much Redistribution? Acknowledgement.
Egalitarian thinkers have adopted Ronald Dworkin’s distinction between brute and option luck in their attempts to construct theories that better respect our intuitions about what it is that egalitarian justice should equalize. I argue that when there is no risk-free choice available, it is less straightforward than commonly assumed to draw this distinction in a way that makes brute-luck egalitarianism plausible. I propose an extension of the brute-luck–option-luck distinction to this more general case. The generalized distinction, called the ‘least risky (...) prospect view’ of brute luck, implies more redistribution than Dworkin’s own solution (although less than called for by some of his other critics). Moreover, the generalized brute-luck–option-luck distinction must be parasitical on an underlying non-egalitarian theory of which sets of options are reasonable. The presupposed prior theory may be inimical to the claim that justice requires equality rather than some other distributive pattern. (shrink)
This paper sets out a framework in which we can distinguish between four types of redistributive attention to the disadvantaged: compensation; personal enhancement; targeted resource enhancement; and status enhancement. It is argued that in certain cases many of us will have strong intuitions in favour or against one or more strategies for addressing disadvantage, and it is further argued that in such cases it is likely that our reactions are based on assumptions about the human good. Hence the two issues (...) — addressing disadvantage and the human good — shed light on one another . (shrink)
Dr Berkes approaches traditional ecological knowledge as a knowledge-practice-belief complex. This complex considers four interrelated levels: local knowledge (species specific); resource management systems (integrating local knowledge with practice); social institutions (rules and codes of behavior); and world view (religion, ethics, and broadly defined belief systems). Divided into three parts that deal with concepts, practice, and issues, respectively, the book first discusses the emergence of the field, its intellectual roots and global significance. Substantive material is then included on how traditional ecological (...) and management systems actually work. At the same time it explores a diversity of relationships that different groups have developed with their environment, using extensive case studies from research conducted with the Cree Indians of James Bay, in the eastern subarctic of North America. The final section examines traditional knowledge as a challenge to the positivist-reductionist paradigm in Western science, and concludes with a discussion of the potential of traditional ecological knowledge to inject a measure of ethics into the science of ecology and resource management. (shrink)
In his widely-discussed book, Real Freedom for All, Philippe Van Parijs argues that justice requires the provision of a universal, unconditional basic income. Some critics reject that conclusion on the grounds that it violates requirements of reciprocity or prohibitions on exploitation, free-riding and parasitism. This paper explores a less familiar critique, which operates within the same resource egalitarian parameters as Van Parijs's argument, and leaves unchallenged his conviction that justice requires a basic income. Instead the paper suggests two reasons to (...) doubt his ambitious claims about its magnitude. First, the paper argues that if envy elimination is the fundamental egalitarian aim then Van Parijs's argument for boosting basic income by including jobs within the class of external assets to be equalized is unsuccessful. Second, it argues that Van Parijs fails to show that the provision of basic income should not be constrained by a more restrictive principle for correcting inequalities in personal resources than his favored compensatory norm. Before defending these criticisms, two preliminary sections describe Van Parijs's distributive principles and his central argument for basic income. (shrink)
I take up the "What is equality?" controversy begun by Amartya Sen in 1979 by critically considering utility (J. S. Mill), primary goods (John Rawls), property rights (John Roemer) and basic capabilities in terms of what is to be distributed according to principles and theories of social justice. I then consider the four most general principles designed to answer issues raised by the Equality of Welfare principle, Equality of Opportunity for Welfare principle, Equality of Resources principle and Equality of Opportunity (...) for Resources principle. I consider each with respect to the more general normative principle that whatever theory of social or distributive justice we accept should be as ambition sensitive and endowment insensitive as feasible in real world circumstances. In this context I take up the problems of expensive tastes, expensive disabilities, lowered or manipulated preferences or ‘needs,’ and differential needs versus differential talents and abilities. I argue that the best solution is to adopt a modified version of Rawls’ theory which takes primary social goods as that which is to be distributed but which demands a Basic Rights principle that insures basic subsistent rights (as well as basic security rights) as the most fundamental principle of morality (and social justice), and then demands that Rawls’ Difference Principle be applied lexically to the ‘material’ goods of income, wealth, and leisure time, but done so that the social basis of self-respect is never undermined. (shrink)
Ronald Dworkin's theory of equality of resources draws heavily on conceptual tools developed in economic theory. His criterion for a just distribution of resources is closely connected with two economic ideas: first, the idea that a distribution of resources reflects a concern for equality if it is envy-free; second, the idea that such an envy-free distribution of resources is attainable as a competitive equilibrium from equal split. The objective of this paper is to show that the criterion of equality of (...) resources has been misinterpreted by normative economics, largely due to Dworkin's own lack of precision, and that it needs to be reformulated in order to be intelligible. The dimensions along which the reformulation is needed concern the nature of the preferences used in what Dworkin calls the ‘envy test’ and the nature of the envy test itself. (shrink)
This essay is a review of Ronald Dworkin's recent essay on equality of resources. Many of the ideas discussed by Dworkin have also been examined by economists with, I believe, considerable insight. Unfortunately, economists tend to write for economists, not for philosophers, and their insights are seldom communicated properly to noneconomists. Of course, the same criticism can be levied on philosophers! But perhaps legal theorists are less subject to this criticism. One of the great contributions of Dworkin is that he (...) is very readable; and the quality of his exposition makes these ideas accessible to a wide audience of philosophers, lawyers, and social scientists in general. (shrink)
Ví dụ, tại bang Kansas, tầng ngậm nước ngầm không còn khả năng đáp ứng được hoạt động nông nghiệp quy mô lớn do tốc độ khai thác vượt quá khả năng tái cung cấp tự nhiên và sản lượng nông nghiệp đang giảm mạnh.
Samuel Bowles and Herbert Gintis want to redirect egalitarianism away from redistribution of income and toward redistribution of assets, particularly productive assets. <1> Their main reason, apart from the fact that income redistribution is so obviously dead in the political waters, is that income redistribution lowers productivity and competitiveness, while asset redistribution raises these, and in the long run the welfare of the worst-off depends more on increasing productivity than it does on distribution. Compound interest is a wonderful thing. Young (...) workers in an inegalitarian society growing at 5% per year making half the wages of those in an egalitarian society growing at 1/2% per year will catch up in 16 years and by the time of their retirement will have four times the income. Bowles and Gintis argue that such mathematics, which has long been an argument for inegalitarian trickle-down policies, in fact supports egalitarian asset redistributions. (shrink)
G. A. Cohen 's critique of Rawlsian special incentives has been criticised as internally inconsistent on the grounds that Cohen concedes the existence of incentives that are legitimate because they are grounded on agent-centred prerogatives. This, Cohen 's critics argue, invites a slippery slope argument: there is no principled line between those incentives Cohen permits and those he condemns. This paper attempts a partial defence of Cohen : a prerogative can be granted but then its operation internally qualified. A better (...) off person has a prerogative that grounds incentive payment, but that person should be sensitive to the degree of difference between her resources and those of the representative worst off person. This gives a better off person under a distribution a discretion that is then internally qualified by a commitment to an egalitarian ethos. The paper concludes that on balance this is not, in fact, a reasonable view of a prerogative: granting it and then qualifying it in this way undermines the unfettered discretion that should attach to a prerogative. However, Cohen has certainly identified an ambiguity in how we conceive of prerogatives. (shrink)