Mixing Interest and Control? Assessing Peter Vallentyne’s Hybrid Theory of Rights

Philosophia 43 (4):933-949 (2015)

Marcus Agnafors
Linkoping University
The relationship between libertarianism and state is a contested one. Despite pressing full and strict ownership of one’s person and any justly acquired goods, many libertarians have suggested ways in which a state, albeit limited, can be regarded as just. Peter Vallentyne has proposed that all plausible versions of libertarianism are compatible with what he calls ‘private-law states’. His proposal is underpinned by a particular conception of rights, which brings Interest Theory of rights and Will Theory of rights together. If convincing, Vallentyne’s theory of rights enables libertarians to accommodate a limited but nevertheless coercive state that can act without the full consent of the affected citizen. In this paper, it is argued that Vallentyne’s hybrid theory of rights is implausible from a libertarian perspective as well as fails to align itself with common and deeply held moral intuitions. Hence the conflict between mainstream libertarianism and the state is not solved by Vallentyne’s proposal
Keywords Peter Vallentyne  Theory of rights  Private-law states  Libertarianism  Self-ownership  Rights
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DOI 10.1007/s11406-015-9652-0
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References found in this work BETA

The Morality of Freedom.Joseph Raz - 1986 - Oxford University Press.
The Domain of Reasons.John Skorupski - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
Are There Any Natural Rights?H. L. A. Hart - 1955 - Philosophical Review 64 (2):175-191.

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