Should the current members of a community compensate the victims of their ancestor’s emissions of greenhouse gases? I argue that the previous generation of polluters may not have been morally responsible for the harms they caused.I also accept the view that the polluters’ descendants cannot be morally responsible for their ancestor’s harmful emissions. However, I show that, while granting this, a suitably defined notion of moral free-riding may still account for the moral obligation of the polluters’ descendants to compensate the (...) current victims of their ancestors’ actions. A concept of transgenerational free-riding is defined. Objections to the idea of using free-riding as part of a theory of justice are rejected. Two different views of moral free-riding are contrasted, with consequences for the amount of compensation to be exigible from the polluters’ descendants. Some final considerations are devoted to the possible relevance of this free-riding-based view for other issues of historical injustice. (shrink)
This report by the WHO Consultative Group on Equity and Universal Health Coverage addresses how countries can make fair progress towards the goal of universal coverage. It explains the relevant tradeoffs between different desirable ends and offers guidance on how to make these tradeoffs.
In this article, we explore the implications of a Rawlsian theory for intergenerational issues. First, we confront Rawls's way of locating his `just savings' principle in his Theory of Justice with an alternative way of doing so. We argue that both sides of his intergenerational principle, as they apply to the accumulation phase and the steady-state stage, can be dealt with on the bases, respectively, of the principle of equal liberty and of the difference principle. We then proceed by focusing (...) on the implications of applying maximin to his steady-state stage. One central claim is that, in principle, Rawlsians should consider not only generational dissavings, but also generational savings, as unfair. This principle suffers a series of exceptions on which we focus in the fourth section of the article. In some cases, growth can be maximin compatible. (shrink)
Pain, suffering and positive emotions in patients in vegetative state/unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (VS/UWS) and minimally conscious states (MCS) pose clinical and ethical challenges. Clinically, we evaluate behavioural responses after painful stimulation and also emotionally-contingent behaviours (e.g., smiling). Using stimuli with emotional valence, neuroimaging and electrophysiology technologies can detect subclinical remnants of preserved capacities for pain which might influence decisions about treatment limitation. To date, no data exist as to how healthcare providers think about end-of-life options (e.g., withdrawal of artificial nutrition (...) and hydration) in the presence or absence of pain in non-communicative patients. Here, we aimed to better clarify this issue by re-analyzing previously published data on pain perception (Prog Brain Res 2009 177, 329–38) and end-of-life decisions (J Neurol 2010 258, 1058–65) in patients with disorders of consciousness. In a sample of 2259 European healthcare professionals we found that, for VS/UWS more respondents agreed with treatment withdrawal when they considered that VS/UWS patients did not feel pain (77%) as compared to those who thought VS/UWS did feel pain (59%). This interaction was influenced by religiosity and professional background. For MCS, end-of-life attitudes were not influenced by opinions on pain perception. Within a contemporary ethical context we discuss (1) the evolving scientific understandings of pain perception and their relationship to existing clinical and ethical guidelines; (2) the discrepancies of attitudes within (and between) healthcare providers and their consequences for treatment approaches, and (3) the implicit but complex relationship between pain perception and attitudes toward life-sustaining treatments. (shrink)
La présente contribution vise à offrir au lecteur une présentation de la doctrine suffisantiste de la justice, de ses justifications générales et spécifiques et de son articulation possible avec d’autres théories de la justice. Elle explore certains aspects plus particuliers tels que la place de la responsabilité en son sein, son applicabilité au domaine intergénérationnel ou son positionnement par rapport à la question des « vies-complètes ». Elle montre aussi en quoi, quelles que soient les faiblesses possibles de cette doctrine, (...) elle présente des caractéristiques la rendant non redondante, en particulier par rapport à l’égalitarisme du leximin.This paper aims at presenting sufficientarianism, its justifications, specificities and the ways in which it can be combined with other theories of justice. We also explore more specific dimensions such as the place of responsibility-sensitivity, the doctrine’s application to the intergenerational realm or its interest for « complete-life » questions. We show to what extent, despite some weaknesses, it is not redundant when compared to or combined with leximin egalitarianism. (shrink)
In this paper, the author offers a synoptic view of different theories of intergenerational justice, along two dimensions (savings/dissavings) and three modalities (prohibition, authorisation, obligation). After presenting successively the indirect reciprocity, the mutual advantage, the utilitarian and the Lockean approaches, special attention is given to the egalitarian theory of intergenerational justice. Two key differences between the egalitarian view on intergenerational justice and the sufficientarian interpretation of sustainability are highlighted.
Different sort of people are interested in personal identity. Philosophers frequently ask what it takes to remain oneself. Caregivers imagine their patients’ experience. But both philosophers and caregivers think from the armchair: they can only make assumptions about what it would be like to wake up with massive bodily changes. Patients with a locked-in syndrome suffer a full body paralysis without cognitive impairment. They can tell us what it is like. Forty-four chronic LIS patients and 20 age-matched healthy medical professionals (...) answered a 15-items questionnaire targeting: global evaluation of identity, body representation and experienced meaning in life. In patients, self-reported identity was correlated with B and C. Patients differed with controls in C. These results suggest that the paralyzed body remains a strong component of patients’ experienced identity, that patients can adjust to objectives changes perceived as meaningful and that caregivers fail in predicting patients’ experience. (shrink)
Should the foreign debt of the world’s poorest countries be cancelled? In this essay, I am concerned with whether a generational perspective makes a difference in answering this question. I will show that it does, and that alternative accounts of repayment obligations are possible. I argue that a distributive theory of justice is not only appropriate to address the challenges to justice raised by long-term sovereign indebtedness, but that it is also superior to the solution offered by the odious debt (...) doctrine.Unlike the odious debt doctrine, a distributive view is capable of taking intoaccount the separateness of generations. More speciﬁcally, I also argue thatthe need to preserve creditors’ incentives to lend to the poor in order toensure that the latter keep having access to credit for important development purposes requires the adoption of a narrow, problem-speciﬁc view, which focuses on the distributive impact of the loan transaction, rather than a broad distributive view, which looks at the general distributive situation of the two descendent communities. (shrink)
What should maximin egalitarians think about seniority privileges? We contrast a good-specific and an all-things-considered perspective. As to the former, inertia and erasing effects of a seniority-based allocation of benefits from employment are identified, allowing us to spot the categories of workers and job-seekers made involuntarily worse off by such a practice. What matters however is to find out whether abolishing seniority privileges will bring about a society in which the all-things-considered worst off people are better off than in the (...) seniority rule's presence. An assessment of the latter's cost-reduction potential is thus needed, enabling us to bridge a practice taking place within a firm with its impact on who the least well off members of society are likely to be. Three accounts of the profitability of seniority privileges are discussed: the “(firm specific) human capital”, the “deferred compensation” and the “knowledge transfer” ones. The respective relevance of “good-specific” and “all-things-considered” analysis is discussed. It turns out that under certain circumstances, a maximin egalitarian case for seniority privileges could be made. Senior: Do you know that they are planning layoffs? Of course, it is only fair that they lay-off the newcomers first! After all, I have been loyal to the company for many years. Junior: Did I choose to be a newcomer? Footnotes1 Many thanks to two anonymous referees, to P.-M. Boulanger, B. Cockx, C. Fabre, L. Jacquet, E. Lazear, I. Robeyns, G. Vallée, Y. Vanderborght, Ph. Van Parijs, V. Vansteenberghe and J. de Wispelaere for their help and critical comments. Earlier versions of this paper were presented in Louvain-la-Neuve, Ghent, Montevideo and London. I am very grateful to these audiences. Special thanks to G. Brennan for his extensive and extremely valuable comments on earlier drafts of this paper. The usual disclaimers apply. (shrink)
This Introduction tells the story of intergerational justice and how it has influenced philosophers and political thinkers throughout history. The Introduction goes on to discuss the aims of the book, which is to offer a sustained discussion of intergenerational justice as seen by practical philosophers. The first part of the book focuses on the way in which various schools of thought in moral and political philosophy approach the domain of intergenerational justice, while the second part focuses on more specific aspects, (...) such as how these theories address the question of motivation, how they deal with demographic fluctuations, or how they can be applied to real-world issues such as climate change. (shrink)
In this introduction, the author briefly presents the way in which Clayton, Segall and Lippert-Rasmussen deal with what egalitarianism has to say about non-discrimination in hiring. Parallels and differences between their approaches are stressed.
Background: Spasticity following a stroke occurs in about 30% of patients. The mechanisms underlying this disorder, however, are not well understood. Method: This review aims to define spasticity, describe hypotheses explaining its development after a stroke, give an overview of related neuroimaging studies as well as a description of the most common scales used to quantify the degree of spasticity and finally explore which treatments are currently being used to treat this disorder.
This chapter explores the specificities, strengths, and weaknesses of the idea of reciprocity as a basis for intergenerational obligations. Three models are presented: descending, ascending, and double reciprocity. Each of these three models is tested against three objections. The first objection asks why having received something from someone would necessarily entail the obligation to give back. The second objection questions the ability of each model to justify the direction of reciprocation. A final objection looks at the extent to which reciprocity-based (...) views adjust the content of our obligation to the fluctuations in population size. (shrink)
For maximin egalitarians, the intergene rational context raises a threefold challenge. First, doesn't intergenerational maximin simply require a prohibition on dissavings, as a commutative conception of justice based on indirect reciprocity does ? Second, shouldn't we take seriously the aggregative worries of utilitarians in order not to remain eternally stuck into misery. Thus, shouldn't we abandon maximin ? Third, don't we find ourselves in a context where standard egalitarianism and maximin egalitarianism would coincide ? The A. provides a negative answer (...) to each of these three questions. He indicates in particular the extent to which maximin egalitarianism does not simply amount to a non-dis-savings rule. He stresses the way in which we should think about intergenerational justice in a properly distributive manner and he examines the way in which we can deal with the « aggregative challenge ». (shrink)
This paper provides a comparative analysis of the way in which, as well as the extent to which, two key variables potentially allow for the development of more left-wing versions of libertarianism and hobbesianism. It turns out that hobbesianism, while disposing of ways to extend the scope of what should be seen as the “cooperative surplus”, is in trouble when it comes to justifying “equal division” as a general rule to divide up such a surplus. In contrast, libertarianism can meaningfully (...) rely on strategies extending the notion of external resources as well as on an equal division rule. We then explore what this entails with respect to the capacity of such theories to offer more redistributive versions than their standard forms. We also briefly look at how to map such left-wing versions, and especially left-libertarianism, once they are compared with other theories such as luck egalitarianism or sufficientarianism. (shrink)
Doit-on attendre des membres actuels d'une communauté qu'ils compensent les victimes des émissions de gaz à effet de serre causées par leurs ancêtres? Nous défendons l'idée que les générations précédentes de pollueurs peuvent très bien ne pas être mo-ralement responsables des dommages qu'elles ont causés. Et nous acceptons aussi la position selon laquelle les descendants d'une génération de pollueurs ne sauraient être tenus pour res-ponsables des dommages engendrés par leurs ancêtres. Il n'en subsiste pas moins que même si l'on effectue (...) ces deux concessions, il reste possible de défendre l'idée d'obligation des des-cendants d'une génération de pollueurs à compenser les victimes actuelles des actions de leurs ancêtres, et ce sur base d'une notion morale de free-riding transgénérationnel. Une définition est proposée et des objections au recours à une telle notion sont rejetées. Suit une comparaison de deux logiques possibles sous-tendant l'utilisation d'un concept de free-riding dans le cadre d'une théorie de la justice, ainsi qu'un examen de leurs implications pratiques. (shrink)
Axel Gosseries1 | : À la suggestion de Jefferson,3 nous nous proposons de prendre au sérieux la comparaison entre nations et générations dans le cadre d’une théorie philosophique de la justice et de la démocratie préoccupée par nos devoirs envers les membres d’autres générations. Nous nous concentrons ici sur trois des caractéristiques propres aux relations intergénérationnelles, à travers une comparaison avec des situations internationales spécifiques. La première a trait à l’immobilité temporelle des personnes au delà de la période s’étendant de (...) leur naissance à leur mort. Cette immobilité rend certaines ressources qui sont spécifiques à des périodes données, inaccessibles aux générations des autres périodes, ce qui peut importer pour certaines théories de la justice. Nous nous intéressons ensuite au caractère enclavé de chaque génération. La transmission intergénérationnelle des biens dépend alors de la collaboration tant passive qu’active des générations de transit. Nous montrons en quoi cela importe pour la définition de nos obligations de justice intergénérationnelle. Enfin, nous insistons sur le caractère unidirectionnel de l’écoulement du temps — cette fois à travers l’analogie avec les nations riveraines d’un fleuve — et son effet sur la distribution temporelle des coûts et bénéfices, et des vulnérabilités. Nous en examinons les implications normatives possibles pour la définition de la juste distribution du pouvoir entre générations. À travers ces trois illustrations, nous espérons montrer la pertinence de cette approche anatomico-analogique pour la compréhension de ce que nous devons aux autres générations, et en particulier aux générations futures. | : Following Jefferson’s suggestion, I take seriously the promises of a comparison between nations and generations, as part of a philosophical theory of justice and of democracy concerned with our obligations towards members of other generations. I focus here on three of the features that are specific to intergenerational relations, through a comparison with corresponding international situations. The first feature has to do with people’s temporal immobility beyond the lapse of time that extends from their birth to their death. Such immobility renders some period-specific resources inaccessible to generations from other periods, which may have implications for some theories of justice. The second feature that I look into is the period-locked nature of the members each generation. The intergenerational transfer of goods to future generations then depends on the passive as well as active collaboration of transit generations. I show why and to what extent this matters to the definition of our intergenerational obligations. Finally, I insist on the one-directional feature of time’s passage — through an analogy with the situation of riparian nations along a river — and on its effect on the temporal distribution of costs and benefits, as well as of vulnerabilities. I explore the potential normative implications of such one-directionality for the definition of a fair distribution of power between generations. Through looking at these three features and closely examining their implications, I also hope to stress the relevance of an anatomico-analogical method for the understanding of what we owe other generations, and especially future ones. (shrink)