This paper examines the link between political liberties and social equality, and contends that the former are constitutive of, i.e. necessary to secure, the latter. Although this constitutive link is often assumed in the literature on political liberties, the reasons why it holds true remain largely unexplored. Three such reasons are examined here. First, political liberties are constitutive of social equality because they bestow political power on their holders, leaving disenfranchised individuals excluded from decisions that are particularly pervasive, coercively enforced, (...) hard to avoid, monopolistic, and final. Second, they are constitutive of social equality due to their positional value, such that those who are denied such liberties are socially downgraded because and to the extent that others enjoy them. Third, they are constitutive of social equality due to their expressive value, in the sense that, by disenfranchising some individuals, the state publicly fails to recognize their equal moral agency. While unpacking these reasons, we address some criticisms of this constitutive link recently raised by Steven Wall and Jason Brennan. (shrink)
Despite renewed interest in work, philosophers have largely ignored self-employment. This neglect is surprising, not just because self-employment was central to classic philosophizing about work, but also given that half of the global workforce today, including one in seven workers in OECD countries, are self-employed. We start off by offering a definition of self-employment, one that accounts for its various forms while avoiding misclassifying dependent self-employed workers as independent contractors, and by mapping the barriers to becoming and remaining self-employed (section (...) 2). We then examine five arguments why governments ought to promote self-employment, despite the forgone opportunities to promote employee work instead that this often entails (sections 3-7): the argument from job creation, the argument from job satisfaction, the argument from independence, the argument from occupational freedom, and the argument from subsistence under non-ideal circumstances. Some of these are unconvincing, we argue, but others are not. Although the strength of the latter arguments hangs on various context-dependent conditions, such that they need to be carefully weighed against considerations of efficiency and equality, they nonetheless offer compelling pro tanto reasons to promote, and not just to protect, self-employment. (shrink)
The status of economic liberties remains a serious lacuna in the theory and practice of human rights. Should a minimally just society protect the freedoms to sell, save, profit and invest? Is being prohibited to run a business a human rights violation? While these liberties enjoy virtually no support from the existing philosophical theories of human rights and little protection by the international human rights law, they are of tremendous importance in the lives of individuals, and particularly the poor. Like (...) most individual liberties, economic liberties increase our ability to lead our own life. When we enjoy them, we can choose the occupational paths that best fit us and, in so doing, define who they are in relation to others. Furthermore, in the absence of good jobs, economic liberties allow us to create an alternative path to subsistence. This is critical for the millions of working poor in developing countries who earn their livelihoods by engaging in independent economic activities. Insecure economic liberties leave them vulnerable to harassment, bribery and other forms of abuse from middlemen and public officials. This book opens a debate about the moral and legal status of economic liberties as human rights. It brings together political and legal theorists working in the domain of human rights and global justice, as well as people engaged in the practice of human rights, to engage in both foundational and applied issues concerning these questions. conomic liberties leave them vulnerable to harassment, bribery and other forms of abuse from middlemen and public officials. This book opens a debate about the moral and legal status of economic liberties as human rights. It brings together political and legal theorists working in the domain of human rights and global justice, as well as people engaged in the practice of human rights, to engage in both foundational and applied issues concerning these questions. (shrink)
Economic disparities often translate into disparities in political influence, rendering political liberties less worthy to poor citizens than to wealthier ones. Concerned with this, Rawls advocated that a guarantee of the fair value of political liberties be included in the first principle of justice as fairness, with significant regulatory and distributive implications. He nonetheless supplied little examination of the content and grounding of such guarantee, which we here offer. After examining three uncompelling arguments in its favor, we complete a more (...) promising yet less explored argument that builds on the value of self-respect. We first inspect the conditions and duties that securing self-respect entails. We then look into how uneven allocations of the value of political liberties bear, expressively and due to the power imbalances they yield, on such conditions and duties. (shrink)
Rawls identifies only two arrangements, the liberal socialist regime and the property-owning democracy, as being compatible with justice. Both are market-based economies, suggesting that a just society must include the market. This article questions this idea by looking at three Rawlsian arguments in favour of the market. Two arguments, which link the market to certain basic liberties, are unsound because the market is shown to be nonessential in protecting these liberties. A third argument points at the instrumental value of the (...) market to make the least advantaged as well off as possible. It is based on an interpretation of the difference principle in which justice requires maximizing the position of the worst off within the most productive economic system. Although commonly accepted, this reading of the principle should be questioned, and thus the third argument is also inconclusive. (shrink)
¿Qué formas de gobierno son legítimas? ¿Qué principios deben regir la asistencia sanitaria y los impuestos? ¿Qué obligaciones tenemos con las generaciones futuras, así como con la naturaleza y los animales? ¿Qué protección merecen la libertad de expresión y las rentas mínimas? ¿Cuándo es permisible recurrir a la desobediencia civil, la secesión o la guerra? -/- Este libro es una introducción a las respuestas que la filosofía reciente, junto a las ciencias sociales, ha ofrecido a estos y otros asuntos políticos. (...) Escritos por destacados especialistas, los ensayos aquí reunidos abordan las grandes cuestiones que preocupan hoy a los filósofos, desde corrientes como el marxismo, el liberalismo y el republicanismo hasta temas como el feminismo, el nacionalismo, la justicia distributiva, la autoridad política y el Estado de derecho, pasando por el medio ambiente, las migraciones, la religión y los derechos humanos, entre otros. -/- Con un estilo claro y ameno, así como un enfoque analítico, esta obra recorre el pensamiento político actual centrándose no sólo en los principales argumentos y problemas que conforman la filosofía política contemporánea, sino también en los retos más urgentes a los que nos enfrentamos como sociedad. (shrink)
Este artículo analiza las principales aportaciones de Ronald Dworkin a la filosofía del derecho y a la filosofía política mostrando que provienen de una visión más amplia que integra el derecho y la moral. La exposición se divide en dos partes. La primera aborda los argumentos de Dworkin para rechazar el positivismo jurídico y presenta su idea de derecho. La segunda se centra en la fundamentación ética del liberalismo y en el criterio distributivo que propone Dworkin.
This paper develops a full account of Rawls's notion of a well-ordered society and uses it to address two luck egalitarian objections to his principles of justice. The first is an internal criticism which claims that Rawls's account of justice is better captured by a responsibility-sensitive egalitarian account. The second is an external objection according to which, regardless of the alleged inconsistency between Rawls's principles and his account of justice, we should reject those principles in favour of a responsibility-sensitive criterion (...) because it better captures our moral intuitions about distributive justice. The argument presented answers both objections by defending the value of well-orderedness and showing the difficulties of responsibility-sensitive egalitarian conceptions in realizing this ideal. (shrink)