Utilitas 22 (4):474-480 (2010)

Karl Widerquist
Georgetown University
This article argues that, under likely empirical conditions, sufficientarianism leads not to an easily achievable duty to maintain a social minimum but to the onerous duty of maintaining a social maximum at the sufficiency level. This happens because sufficientarians ask us to give no weight at all to small benefits for people above the sufficiency level if the alternative is to relieve the suffering of people below it. If we apply this judgment in a world where there are rare diseases and hard-to-prevent accidents that cause people to fall below the sufficiency threshold, all of our discretionary spending will have to be devoted to bringing harder and harder cases up to sufficiency. Nothing will be left for anyone to consume above the sufficiency level
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DOI 10.1017/s095382081000035x
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References found in this work BETA

Equality as a Moral Ideal.Harry Frankfurt - 1987 - Ethics 98 (1):21-43.
Why Sufficiency is Not Enough.Paula Casal - 2007 - Ethics 117 (2):296-326.
Equality, Priority, and Compassion.Roger Crisp - 2003 - Ethics 113 (4):745-763.

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Citations of this work BETA

The Prospects for Sufficientarianism.Liam Shields - 2012 - Utilitas 24 (1):101-117.
Sufficiency and the Threshold Question.Robert Huseby - 2020 - The Journal of Ethics 24 (2):207-223.
Qu’est-ce que le suffisantisme?Axel Gosseries - 2011 - Philosophiques 38 (2):465-491.

View all 12 citations / Add more citations

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