This chapter discusses the Rawlsian project of public reason, or public justification-based 'political' liberalism, and its reception. After a brief philosophical rather than philological reconstruction of the project, the chapter revolves around a distinction between idealist and realist responses to it. Focusing on political liberalism’s critical reception illuminates an overarching question: was Rawls’s revival of a contractualist approach to liberal legitimacy a fruitful move for liberalism and/or the social contract tradition? The last section contains a largely negative answer to that (...) question. Nonetheless the chapter's conclusion shows that the research programme of political liberalism provided and continues to provide illuminating insights into the limitations of liberal contractualism, especially under conditions of persistent and radical diversity. The programme is, however, less receptive to challenges to do with the relative decline of the power of modern states. (shrink)
In this article, I shall contend that Rawlsian public reason liberalism (PRL) is in tension with non-anthropocentric environmentalism. I will argue that many reasonable citizens reject non-anthropocentric values, and PRL cannot allow them to be used as the justification for ecological policies. I will analyse attempts to argue that PRL can incorporate non-anthropocentric ideas. I shall consider the view, deployed by theorists such as Derek Bell and Mark A. Michael, that PRL can make a distinction between constitutional essentials and non-essentials, (...) and therefore ecocentric values can be employed when only non-essentials are at stake. I will also consider Simon Hailwood’s argument that PRL can incorporate concern for nature based on its ‘otherness’. I shall conclude that both positions fail to rebut the claim that PRL excludes non-anthropocentric viewpoints. I will consider the question of whether PRL’s exclusion of non-anthropocentric ethics is a problem, and I shall show that appealing to purely anthropocentric arguments leads to a variety of unpalatable conclusions. I will suggest that comprehensive liberalism can include non-anthropocentric concerns, and hence is superior from an environmental perspective. (shrink)
When is it legitimate for a government to ‘nudge’ its citizens, in the sense described by Thaler and Sunstein (2008)? In their original work on the topic, Thaler and Sunstein developed the _‘as judged by themselves’ (or AJBT) test_ to answer this question (Thaler and Sunstein 2008, p. 5). In a recent paper, Paul and Sunstein (2019) raised a concern about this test: it often seems to give the wrong answer in cases in which we are nudged to make a (...) decision that leads to what Paul calls a _personally transformative experience_, that is, one that results in our values changing (Paul 2014). In those cases, the nudgee will judge the nudge to be legitimate after it has taken place, but only because their values have changed as a result of the nudge. In this paper, I take up the challenge of finding an alternative test. I draw on my _aggregate utility account_ of how to choose in the face of what Ullmann-Margalit (2006) calls _big decisions_, that is, decisions that lead to these personally transformative experiences (Pettigrew 2019, Chapters 6 and 7). (shrink)
A number of philosophers from Hobbes to Mill to Parfit have held some combination of the following views about the Golden Rule: (a) It is the cornerstone of morality across many if not all cultures. (b) It affirms the value of moral impartiality, and potentially the core idea of utilitarianism. (c) It is immune from evolutionary debunking, that is, there is no good naturalistic explanation for widespread acceptance of the Golden Rule, ergo the best explanation for its appearance in different (...) traditions is that people have perceived the same non-natural moral truth. De Lazari-Radek and Singer employ all three of these claims in an argument meant to vindicate Sidgwick's ‘principle of universal benevolence’. I argue that the Golden Rule is the cornerstone of morality only in Christianity, it does not advocate moral impartiality, and there is a naturalistic explanation for why versions of the Golden Rule appear in different traditions. (shrink)
Within the small body of philosophical work on strikes, to participate in a strike is commonly seen as to refuse to do the job while retaining one’s claim upon it. What is the relationship, though, between liberalism and the right to strike? This is our main question.
Liberalism has a complicated and sometimes uneasy relationship with truth. On one hand, liberalism requires that truth be widely valued and widely shared. It demands that governments be truthful and that citizens have ready access to numerous truths. Some liberals even take facilitating the discovery and dissemination of truth to be part of the raison d’être of liberal institutions. On the other hand, liberalism is averse to proclaiming or enforcing truth. It detaches truth from political legitimacy and deems certain truths (...) unfit to serve as bases of government. Some liberals have even suggested that liberal theory must work “without the concept of truth.” How has liberalism come to both demand truth and eschew it? This introductory section provides the beginnings of an answer by surveying some of the origins and core elements of liberal thought. (shrink)
Contemporary societies are regulated by a complex system, which tends to be exhaustive, supported by growing social and technical interdependence. This system is composed of subsystems: global economic production, liberal political institutions and a social organization based on labour. As a whole, these three dimensions – political, economical, social – tend to compress contemporary life forms into a single way of life, primarily structured by systemic functionality. Although it admits variations of degree (or even, to some extent, qualitative differences), the (...) functional codes (of systems) guide actions daily and impose severe limitations on lifestyles, which are particularly noticeable when the struggle for survival, both economically and socially, mobilizes all of one’s time and energy. The means obliterate the ends, functioning obliterates meaning, survival obliterates the proper human “life”. At the political level, liberal thought masks the “malaise of modern civilization” resulting from these limitations by evacuating the question on forms of life to the private sphere, concurrently with the insistence on an abstract political ethic of the “just”, ultimately determining the form and functioning of the institutions, which overrides any and all ethics of “good”. (shrink)
John Rawls raises three challenges – to which one can add a fourth challenge – to an impartial spectator account: (a) the impartial spectator is a utility-maximizing device that does not take seriously the distinction between persons; (b) the account does not guarantee that the principles of justice will be derived from it; (c) the notion of impartiality in the account is the wrong one, since it does not define impartiality from the standpoint of the litigants themselves; (d) the account (...) would offer a comprehensive, rather than a political, form of liberalism. The narrow aim of the article is to demonstrate that Adam Smith's impartial spectator account can rise to Rawls's challenges. The broader aim is to demonstrate that the impartial spectator account offers the basis for a novel and alternative framework for developing principles of justice, and does so in the context of a political form of liberalism. (shrink)
Study on the "philosophy of history" of three mexican intellectuals in the 19th century./ Estudio sobre la "filosofía de la historia" positivista y liberal en tres intelectuales mexicanos del siglo XIX,.
L’Amérique et le monde sont en train de s’effondrer à cause d’une croissance démographique excessive, la plupart pour le siècle dernier, et maintenant tout cela, en raison des personnes du 3e monde. La consommation de ressources et l’ajout de 4 milliards d’euros supplémentaires vont effondrer la civilisation industrielle et provoquer la famine, la maladie, la violence et la guerre à une échelle stupéfiante. La terre perd au moins 1% de sa terre maximale chaque année, de sorte qu’il approche de 2100, (...) la plupart de sa capacité de culture alimentaire aura disparu. Des milliards vont mourir et la guerre nucléaire est presque certaine. En Amérique, cela est considérablement accéléré par l’immigration massive et la reproduction des immigrants, combinée avec des abus rendus possibles par la démocratie. La nature humaine dépravée transforme inexorablement le rêve de démocratie et de diversité en cauchemar de la criminalité et de la pauvreté. La Chine continuera à submerger l’Amérique et le monde, tant qu’elle maintiendra la dictature qui limite l’égoïsme. La cause profonde de l’effondrement est l’incapacité de notre psychologie innée à s’adapter au monde moderne, ce qui conduit les gens à traiter des personnes sans lien de parenté comme s’ils avaient des intérêts communs. L’idée des droits de l’homme est un fantasme maléfique promu par les gauchistes pour détourner l’attention de la destruction impitoyable de la terre par la maternité du 3e monde sans retenue. Ceci, plus l’ignorance de la biologie de base et de la psychologie, conduit aux illusions d’ingénierie sociale des personnes partiellement instruites qui contrôlent les sociétés démocratiques. Peu de gens comprennent que si vous aidez une personne, vous faites du mal à quelqu’un d’autre, il n’y a pas de déjeuner gratuit et chaque article que quelqu’un consomme détruit la terre au-delà de la réparation. Par conséquent, les politiques sociales partout sont insoutenables et une à une toutes les sociétés sans contrôle strict sur l’égoïsme s’effondreront dans l’anarchie ou la dictature. Les faits les plus élémentaires, presque jamais mentionnés, sont qu’il n’y a pas assez de ressources en Amérique ou dans le monde pour sortir un pourcentage significatif des pauvres de la pauvreté et les y maintenir. La tentative de le faire est la faillite de l’Amérique et de détruire le monde. La capacité de la terre à produire des aliments diminue chaque jour, tout comme notre qualité génétique. Et maintenant, comme toujours, de loin le plus grand ennemi des pauvres est d’autres pauvres et non les riches. Sans changements dramatiques et immédiats, il n’y a aucun espoir pour empêcher l’effondrement de l’Amérique, ou tout autre pays qui suit un système démocratique. (shrink)
América e o mundo estão em processo de colapso devido ao crescimento excessivo da população, a maioria no século passado, e agora tudo isso, devido ao povo do 3º mundo. O consumo de recursos e a adição de mais 4 bilhões de ca. 2100 desonram a civilização industrial e provocarão fome, doenças, violência e guerra em escala impressionante. A Terra perde pelo menos 1% de seu solo a cada ano, então, à medida que se aproxima de 2100, a maior parte (...) de sua capacidade de cultivo de alimentos desaparecerá. Bilhões morrerão e a guerra nuclear é quase certa. Na América, isso está sendo extremamente acelerado pela imigração maciça e reprodução de imigrantes, combinado com abusos possibilitados pela democracia. A natureza humana depravada inexoravelmente transforma o sonho da democracia e da diversidade em um pesadelo de crime e pobreza. A China continuará a sobrecarregar a América e o mundo, desde que mantenha a ditadura que limita o egoísmo. A causa principal do colapso é a incapacidade de nossa psicologia inata de se adaptar ao mundo moderno, o que leva as pessoas a tratar pessoas não relacionadas como se tivessem interesses comuns. A ideia dos direitos humanos é uma fantasia maligna promovida pelos esquerdistas para chamar a atenção da destruição impiedosa da Terra pela maternidade do 3º mundo. Isso, além da ignorância da biologia básica e da psicologia, leva aos delírios da engenharia social dos parcialmente educados que controlam as sociedades democráticas. Poucos entendem que se você ajuda uma pessoa que você machuca outra pessoa — não há almoço grátis e cada item que alguém consome destrói a terra além do reparo. Consequentemente, as políticas sociais em todos os lugares são insustentáveis e uma por uma todas as sociedades sem controles rigorosos sobre o egoísmo entrarão em colapso em anarquia ou ditadura. Os fatos mais básicos, quase nunca mencionados, são que não há recursos suficientes na América ou no mundo para tirar uma porcentagem significativa dos pobres da pobreza e mantê-los lá. A tentativa de fazer isso está faliu a América e destruindo o mundo. A capacidade da Terra de produzir alimentos diminui diariamente, assim como nossa qualidade genética. E agora, como sempre, de longe, o maior inimigo dos pobres é outros pobres e não os ricos. Sem mudanças dramáticas e imediatas, não há esperança para evitar o colapso da América, ou qualquer país que siga um sistema democrático. (shrink)
Estados Unidos y el mundo están en proceso de colapso por el crecimiento excesivo de la población, la mayor parte del siglo pasado, y ahora todo, debido a la gente del tercer mundo. El consumo de recursos y la adición de 4.000 millones más alrededor de 2100 colapsarán la civilización industrial y provocarán hambre, enfermedades, violencia y guerra a una escala asombrosa. La tierra pierde al menos el 1% de su suelo superior cada año, por lo que a medida que (...) se acerca a 2100, la mayor parte de su capacidad de cultivo de alimentos desaparecerá. Miles de millones morirán y la guerra nuclear es muy segura. En Estados Unidos, esto está siendo enormemente acelerado por la inmigración masiva y la reproducción de inmigrantes, combinado con los abusos que hacen posible la democracia. La depravada naturaleza humana convierte inexorablemente el sueño de la democracia y la diversidad en una pesadilla del crimen y la pobreza. China seguirá abrumando a Estados Unidos y al mundo, mientras mantenga la dictadura que limita el egoísmo. La causa fundamental del colapso es la incapacidad de nuestra psicología innata para adaptarse al mundo moderno, lo que lleva a las personas a tratar a personas no relacionadas como si tuvieran intereses comunes. La idea de los derechos humanos es una fantasía maligna promovida por los izquecenas para alejar la atención de la destrucción despiadada de la tierra por la maternidad del tercer mundo sin restricciones. Esto, además de la ignorancia de la biología básica y la psicología, conduce a los delirios de ingeniería social de los parcialmente educados que controlan las sociedades democráticas. Pocos entienden que si ayudas a una persona, dañas a otra persona, no hay almuerzo gratis y cada artículo que alguien consume destruye la tierra más allá de la reparación. En consecuencia, las políticas sociales en todas partes son insostenibles y una a una todas las sociedades sin estrictos controles sobre el egoísmo se derrumbarán en anarquía o dictadura. Los hechos más básicos, casi nunca mencionados, son que no hay suficientes recursos en Estados Unidos o en el mundo para sacar a un porcentaje significativo de los pobres de la pobreza y mantenerlos allí. El intento de hacer esto es la bancarrota de Estados Unidos y la destrucción del mundo. La capacidad de la tierra para producir alimentos disminuye diariamente, al igual que nuestra calidad genética. Y ahora, como siempre, el mayor enemigo de los pobres es otro pobre y no los ricos. Sin cambios dramáticos e inmediatos, no hay esperanza de impedir el colapso de Estados Unidos, ni de ningún país que siga un sistema democrático. (shrink)
Starting from the ‘Dewey Lectures’, Rawls presents his conception of justice within a contextualist framework, as an elaboration of the basic ideas embedded in the political culture of liberal-democratic societies. But how are these basic ideas to be justified? In this article, I reconstruct and criticize Rawls’s strategy to answer this question. I explore an alternative strategy, consisting of a genealogical argument of a pragmatic kind – the kind of argument provided by authors like Bernard Williams, Edward Craig and Miranda (...) Fricker. I outline this genealogical argument drawing on Rawls’s reconstruction of the origins of liberalism. Then, I clarify the conditions under which this kind of argument maintains vindicatory power. I claim that the argument satisfies these conditions and that pragmatic genealogy can thus partially vindicate the basic ideas of liberal-democratic societies. (shrink)
Can a liberal state exclude illiberal immigrants in order to preserve its liberal status? Hrishikesh Joshi has argued that liberalism cannot require a commitment to open borders because this would entail that liberalism is committed to its own demise in circumstances in which many illiberal immigrants aim to immigrate into a liberal society. I argue that liberalism is committed to its own demise in certain circumstances, but that this is not as bad as it may appear. Liberalism’s commitment to its (...) own demise is merely a reflection of the fact that it must take into account the rights of outsiders, not just the rights of existing citizens, and of the fact that circumstances of injustice can sometimes leave liberal societies with no correct choice. (shrink)
The idea that healthcare should become more person-centred is extremely influential. By using recent English policy developments as a case study, this article aims to critically analyse an important element of person-centred care, namely, the belief that to treat patients as persons is to think that care should be ‘co-produced’ by formal healthcare providers and patients together with unpaid carers and voluntary organizations. I draw on insights from political philosophy to highlight overlooked tensions between co-production and values like equality and (...) liberty. Regarding equality, I argue that co-production compounds both problems of gender inequality in the distribution of care labour and the challenges associated with securing equal access to care. Turning to liberty, I identify important commonalities between co-production and republicanism in political philosophy, given their shared insistence on common citizens’ civic virtue. Then, I use against co-production some liberal arguments against republicanism, to highlight a problem of over-demandingness. In bringing my argument to a close, however, I wish to caution against hastily rejecting co-production as a policy programme. (shrink)
The modern concept of ideology was established by the liberal politician and philosopher Destutt de Tracy, with the objective of creating an all-embracing and general science of ideas, which followed the sensualist and empiricist trend initiated by Locke that culminated in the positivism of Comte. Natural selection and immunity are two key concepts in the history of biology that were strongly based on the Malthusian concept of struggle for existence. This concept wrongly assumed that population grew faster than the means (...) of existence. This “natural” law contained implicitly the idea that the poor and least gifted would not survive. This idea led to the progressive development of the concept of natural selection, whose definitive version was given by Darwin. Mechnikov took the concepts of struggle for existence and natural selection and conceived infectious diseases as a struggle between a host and its invader, the so-called phagocytosis theory. This theory created the necessity to possess mechanisms to discriminate between the own and the foreign, and led to the conception of the immune self. These concepts were not developed from ideas coming from perceptions or sensations, but from ideas coming from their values: individual interest, inevitable inequality, property, utility and profit. Values are ideals that constitute an ideological matrix which exerts a numinous activity and influence the development of our future actions. In consequence, science and its practice cannot avoid and ignore the values that drive them and impulse them towards certain directions. (shrink)
Public spaces are often sites of contention between competing conceptions of the good life. The potential for such conflicts increases in diverse societies where different ethnic, religious and cultural groups compete for space and representation in the public sphere. A paradigmatic example is the conflict between multiculturalism and conservatism towards the function and character of public spaces. A clear criterion is necessarily, in such conflicts, to determine which conception may be legitimately crowded-out, and which may prevail. The paper examines two (...) strategies to justify such a criterion: a liberal approach and a perfectionist approach. According to the liberal approach, public spaces should reflect the pluralism of values in society, by combining multiplicity and coherence of values. Yet pluralism is too ambiguous a concept to determine, in practice, which conceptions of the good can legitimately be crowded-out, both physically and metaphorically, from the public sphere. Perfectionism, an ethical approach grounded in human developmentalism, holds that the good life is a life of developing and exercising our human capacities. This approach yields a substantive account of public space regulation: public spaces should promote the development and exercise of our human capacities. On this account, we can approach the conflict between competing claims on public spaces by asking whether crowding-out might harm the potential development and exercise of our capacities. The perfectionist approach also provides a finer distinction between different types of conservatisms, such that we may differentiate between conservatism that may be legitimately crowded-out from the spatial sphere, and conservatism which may prevail. This paper argues that a perfectionist approach—one which is explicitly committed to a view of the good life—is both necessary and timely. (shrink)
La responsabilità verso la terra e tutte le forme di vita è lo strumento per riconoscere l’ambivalenza bene/male presente in ogni uomo, decostruire l'antropocentrismo, proporre una paideia non violenta. Nell'uscita dall'antropocene, dal collettivismo spersonalizzante e dall'era dei diritti, l’unico modo per portare rispetto a tutti i viventi e alla madre Terra è il percorrere la via verso l'autopurificazione ed il ri-conoscimento del sacro che pervade le nostre vite.
My aim in this paper is to chart what I see as parallels between the ontology of self in Charles Taylor’s work and that of various Buddhist ‘no-self’ views, along with parallels between Taylor’s commitment to reviving republican ideas and some aspects of Buddhist ethics. I see key resemblances and overlaps at the level of metaphysics as well as ethics. For Taylor, the sorts of atomistic accounts of self that have come to be accepted as natural and unquestionable in the (...) West are deeply misguided. The dominant Hobbesian-Lockean procedural picture of selfhood blinds us to the intrinsic relatedness of self to others and has profoundly negative consequences for the kinds of shared conceptions of the good necessary for viable and functioning democracies to survive and flourish. For Taylor, we thus need to retrieve and rearticulate a more accurate understanding of the self (Taylor 1985a, c, d, 1989, 1995a, b, 2003). This conception acknowledges that the self is located in a web of locution, conversation, and social interconnectedness, a sense that gives rise to an expanded notion of our moral and political duties. I argue that such an understanding of the self and ethics has strong resemblances to the kinds of views of the self and ethics as articulated by various schools of Buddhism. Conceptions of anātman or no-self and pratītyasamutpāda (interconnectedness) similarly broaden the scope and domain of our moral concern to be more inclusive by interrogating perspectives that conceive of the self as a separate and isolated individual. This is illustrated by many Buddhist schools of philosophy, which argue that a more accurate understanding of the self as empty of inherent and separate existence leads to adopting a more compassionate ethical stance towards others. I would suggest that, along the same lines, this understanding is required for a sustainable future for not only our communities, but that of an increasingly interrelated and interdependent world. (shrink)
La pregunta si Wittgenstein fue un filósofo liberal ha recibido menos atención que la de si fue un filósofo conservador, pero, como Robert Greenleaf Brice ha defendido recientemente, hay muchos indicios de liberalismo en algumas de sus observaciones, y algunos filósofos, como Richard Eldridge, han sostenido que hay un cierto tipo de liberalismo que se sigue de la filosofía de su última etapa. Richard Rorty ha sacado también conclusiones liberales a partir de la perspectiva filosófica que se basa en la (...) obra de Wittgenstein y Alice Crary ha sugerido que las lecciones aprendidas de su propria interpretación de Wittgenstein "reflejan en formas de vida social que incorporan los ideales de la democracia liberal". (shrink)
This article defends the thesis that, in light of the postulates of liberal ethics, it is not possible to put forward universal arguments in support of any form of marriage. The existing forms of marriage should be either deemed unjust or founded on specific arguments recognized within a particular political community and determining the understanding of justice in a particular society. It defends the thesis that the requirement of universality, and consequently of impartiality, is not met, since behind every form (...) of marriage there is a certain “minimum” anthropological approach. Marriage is discussed as a privilege granted to particular groups by the political community. The comments are made with reference to the discussion between Krzysztof Saja and Tomasz Sieczkowski concerning the problem of discrimination against same-sex couples in Polish legislation. (shrink)
This paper argues that Kant’s distinction between “civil union” and “ethical community” can be of great value in dealing with a problem that causes considerable trouble in contemporary political and social philosophy, namely the question of the normative significance and role of religion in political and social life. The first part dwells upon the third part of Kant`s Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason with the intention of exposing the general features of ethical community. It highlights the fact that (...) Kant considers publicity, and indeed public authority, to be constitutive of the ethical community. The second part discusses his argument that we have a unique ethical duty to enter into an ethical community. This discussion clarifies the constitutive purpose of ethical community and sets forth why Kant thought that the ethical community should have a religious form. The third part presents an account of the constitutive purpose of the state in light of the Doctrine of Right. Throughout these steps, as is concluded, the essentials of a model for the relations between law, ethics, and religion emerge, which shows the way in which both religious and secularist worries can be met on a principled basis. (shrink)
The currently used humanity model is chaotic, devoid of logic or coherence. In Part 1 of this two-part paper, we examined human traits of a scientific model in absence of ‘born sinner’ starting point. We demonstrated that the so-called ‘viceroy model’ that is characterized as scientifically sustainable can replace the existing models that are based on fear and scarcity. Part Two of the paper deals with adequate definition of moral campus that conforms to the viceroy model. In this paper, it (...) is shown that the talk of morality or a moral compass is aphenomenal in absence of strict necessary and sufficient conditions. It also follows that natural justice can only be followed after defining the term ‘natural’ with the same scientific rigor as that of the viceroy model. Once these terms are consistently defined, one is well poised to talk about inalienable rights, moral compass, environmental sustainability, and humanity. The immediate consequence of this model is the demonstration that currently used governance models, such as democracy, is inherently implosive and must be replaced with a new model that is in conformance with the scientific definition of ‘natural’. This emerging model is free from inconsistencies and will remain effective as a governance tool that optimizes individual rights and balances with the right of the state as well as a Creator. It is concluded that this model offers the only hope of maximizing individual liberty without compromising universal peace and natural justice. At this point, morality and legality become equivalent to each. The implications of this paper are overwhelming, making all current judicial actions immoral, in essence repudiating the entire Establishment as little more than a mafia entity, bringing back ‘might is right’ mantra, packaged as ‘social progress’. The paper finally shows how a standard that is necessarily and sufficiently universal can become impetus for a true knowledge. (shrink)
Typically, we think of republicans and liberals as being suspicious of paternalistic law. But in this paper, I argue that enactment of paternalistic law is actually demanded by republican and liberal values, and that enacting certain paternalistic laws is one way that the republican or liberal state performs its core function. As I explain it, this core function is to create and to maintain conditions of right-conditions of freedom, non-domination, justice, etc.-among persons capable of making legitimate second-personal claims on one (...) another. I argue, though, that individual persons are capable of making legitimate second-personal claims on themselves, in precisely the way that calls for state intervention. In other words, I argue that paternalistic law is demanded by considerations of right. (shrink)
For Alexis de Tocqueville, a faithful son of the Enlightenment, the priority given to the individual in the pursuit of truth represents the starting point of an inexorable march of equality towards individual autonomy. In other words, in agreement with the historicist movements of the 19th Century, Tocqueville interprets history as a dialectical progress: History understood as progress in the Hegelian sense, whose becoming unfolds in virtue of a steady and unalterable progress towards a better society-civilization as a creation of (...) the illustrated man. However, while for Hegel progress obeys a reason understood as self-knowledge, Tocqueville understands it as a balance between antagonisms: liberty-individual-democracy. In other words, the Tocquevillian dualism, expressed in the permanent tension between antagonisms equality vs. freedom, the individual vs the citizen–, leads towards a new class of dialectics of liberty. In this sense, the aforementioned triad represents, precisely, the tension that reveals itself as problematic, given that, ultimately, the elements that compose it arise antithetically. (shrink)
This paper is a part-review analysis into the modern conception of both the word and Jihād and the violent nature of Islam. In order to develop an overarching modern theory of Jihād, current opinions and general argumtations in the literature are examined. Two theories have emerged in defining Islam and the role of Jihād in Islam. The first is that of the so-called Muslim apologists; scholars who define Jihād as mainly a personal struggle, and whose physical application (warfare) is only (...) in self-defence of the Islamic community. The second sponsors the concept of ‘offensive’ Jihād: that Islam is imperialistic and has a vision of global domination. The stark contrast in the divisions that the scholarship have are indicative of two opposing parties, likely each basing their respective policy positions on beliefs on the nature of Islam as a violent of peaceful ‘religion’. (shrink)
There is widespread agreement among both supporters and opponents that affirmative action either must not violate any principle of equal opportunity or procedural justice, or if it does, it may do so only given current extenuating circumstances. Many believe that affirmative action is morally problematic, only justified to the extent that it brings us closer to the time when we will no longer need it. In other words, those that support affirmative action believe it is acceptable in nonideal theory, but (...) not ideal theory. This paper argues that affirmative action is entirely compatible with equal opportunity and procedural justice and would be even in an ideal world. I defend a new analysis of Rawlsian procedural justice according to which it is permissible to interfere in the outcomes of procedures, and thus I show that affirmative action is not morally problematic in the way that many have supposed. (shrink)
In contemporary positive law there are legal institutions, such as conscientious objection in the context of military service or “conscience clauses” in medical law, which for the sake of respect for judgments of conscience aim at restricting legal obligations. Such restrictions are postulated to protect human freedom in general. On the basis of Thomas Aquinas’ philosophy, it shall be argued that human dignity, understood as the existential perfection of a human being based on special unity, provides a foundation for imposing (...) limitations on the scope of legal obligations in general. Human freedom plays a crucial role in understanding dignity as perfection based on the special individuality of a personal being, which in turn is based on the free choice to pursue a unique way of life. Therefore, Aquinas’ argumentation is, at its core, liberal – the perfection rather than the imperfection of a human being underlies the requirement to limit legal obligations. Dignity understood as the special unity of a person also provides the basis for limiting obligations in the case of conscientious objection; however, in that case, such limitations aim at safeguarding internal integrity rather than the individualisation of a given way of life. _This project was financed with funds from the National Science Centre allocated on the basis of the decision number DEC-2013/09/B/HS5/04232._. (shrink)
In this article I try to prove that John Rawls, in his lectures published in _Political Liberalism_ and later works, recommended the independence of one’s world-view and politics, and that at the same time he allowed the existence of non-conflicting factual truths in politics. His reflections on the problem of truth in the political realm are closely related to his reflections on reason, not only the public one. Thus, the aim of this article is to present and analyze Rawls’ understanding (...) of reason and the place and function of truth in politics. (shrink)
The article is a philosophical reflection of the current status of the humanities in Slovakia. In many areas of our society there is an evident deficit in humanities-science knowledge, reflected also in parliamentary election results in 2016 and having serious consequences on our society. The article therefore suggests the possibility of transposing knowledge of the humanities, particularly philosophy, in the educational process appropriate to the character of a pluralistic liberal democracy in the 21st century.
This article tries to analyze the meaning and relevance of the concept of solidarity as compared to the concept of justice. While ‘justice’ refers to rights and duties , the concept of solidarity refers to relations of personal commitment and recognition . The article wants to answer the question whether solidarity and liberal justice should be seen as mutually exclusive or whether both approaches should be regarded as complementary to each other. The paper starts with an analysis of liberal theories (...) of justice which are followed by an analysis of the descriptive and a moral understanding of the concept of solidarity. The importance of solidarity lies in its relational aspects, particularly its emphasis on cooperation and commonality. The paper argues that while solidarity is more fundamental than justice, both concepts are important for the arrangement of health care practices. The paper gives special attention to the concept of decent care, reflective solidarity and humanitarian solidarity which is seen as fundamental for all health care policies and care practices. (shrink)
This paper aims at evaluating the compatibility of coercive climate policies with liberal neutrality. More precisely, it focuses on the doctrine of state neutrality as associated with the " harm principle ". It argues that given the difficulty of attributing causal responsibilities for climate harms to individuals, the harm principle doesn’t work in this case, at least if one endorses a liberal atomistic ontology. Furthermore, the definition of what constitutes climate harms implies making moral assumptions, which makes it impossible to (...) justify climate policies in a neutral way. Finally, the paper shows another consequence of applying neutrality to the case of climate change, that is the risk of a shift from political forms of decision-making to technocracy. Focusing too much on liberty of choice may be to the detriment of political freedom. The paper concludes that climate change is an intrinsically moral issue and that it should be the occasion of a political debate about our current values and lifestyles. It should not be reduced to a mere question of carbon metric. (shrink)
What we here show is two-fold. First, there is in certain sectors of the legal community a trend to pronounce negatively on the epistemic credentials of religious belief: many hold that religious belief as such is simply irrational. Our second claim is simply that religious belief need not be irrational: it is perfectly possible for religious believers to have epistemically justified religious beliefs. We discuss here several implications of our two-fold claim. The most important of these is simply that religious (...) citizens’ religious beliefs cannot be barred from the public square for any epistemological reason. (shrink)
It is Chantal Mouffe’s contention that the central weakness of consensus-driven forms of liberalism, such as John Rawls’ political liberalism and Jurgen Habermas’ deliberative democracy, is that they refuse to acknowledge conflict and pluralism, especially at the level of the ontological. Their defence for doing so is that conflict and pluralism are the result of attempts to incorporate unreasonable and irrational claims into the public political sphere. In this context, unreasonable and irrational claims are those that cannot be translated into (...) universalizable terms. However, for Mouffe, it is this intentional exclusionary act itself that is detrimental to a well- functioning democratic polity. It is only through the inclusion of a diverse body of subject positions that a democratic polity can be said to be truly representative of the polity, and therefore constitute a functioning and inclusive democracy. -/- This paper will examine Mouffe’s account of agonistic pluralism. In doing so, it will demonstrate that instead of being a source of instability within the democratic discourse and therefore relegated into the private non-political sphere, passions and values that are constitutive of these subject positions ought to be incorporated into the public political sphere. Mouffe’s rationale for doing so is that it is precisely through their incorporation that citizens will retain their allegiance to the democratic polity. However, as part of this examination, this paper will also draw attention to an under-developed aspect of Mouffe’s account of agonistic democracy, specifically problems regarding both participation and exclusion. Whilst Mouffe does provide a robust counterpoint to both Rawls’ political liberalism and Habermas’ deliberative democracy, it is my contention that she fails to explain adequately what it is that persuades participants to act democratically and adhere to the requirements of agonal respect, nor what should happen when the ethico- political principles of liberty and equality are not accepted. (shrink)
Public justification-based accounts of liberal legitimacy rely on the idea that a polity’s basic structure should, in some sense, be acceptable to its citizens. In this paper I discuss the prospects of that approach through the lens of Gerald Gaus’ critique of John Rawls’ paradigmatic account of democratic public justification. I argue that Gaus does succeed in pointing out some significant problems for Rawls’ political liberalism; yet his alternative, justificatory liberalism, is not voluntaristic enough to satisfy the desiderata of a (...) genuinely democratic theory of public justification. So I contend that—pace Gaus, but also Rawls—rather than simply amending political liberalism, the claims of justificatory liberalism bring out fatal tensions between the desiderata of any theory of liberal-democratic legitimacy through public justification. (shrink)
Liberal democracies deal poorly with states of emergency because they underestimate the corrosive effect of arbitrary coercion on established liberal democratic values. Far from protecting the rights of citizens, arbitrary emergency measures undermine citizens’ rights.
This is a book about the harms of oppression, and about addressing these harms using the resources of liberalism and Kantianism. Its central thesis is that people who are oppressed are bound by the duty of self-respect to resist their own oppression. In it, I defend certain core ideals of the liberal tradition—specifically, the fundamental importance of autonomy and rationality, the intrinsic and inalienable dignity of the individual, and the duty of self-respect—making the case that these ideals are pivotal in (...) both understanding and counteracting oppression. I argue that if we take these ideals seriously then it follows that people who are oppressed have an obligation to themselves to resist their own oppression. (shrink)
According to the commonsense view of civic virtue, the places to exercise civic virtue are largely restricted to politics. In this article, I argue for a more expansive view of civic virtue, and argue that one can exercise civic virtue equally well through working for or running a for-profit business. I argue that this conclusion follows from four relatively uncontroversial premises: (1) the consensus definition of “civic virtue”, (2) the standard, most popular theory of virtuous activity, (3) a conception of (...) the common good widely shared by liberal political philosophers, and (4) the mainstream economic theory of for-profit business. (shrink)
Grenzen produzieren Widersprüche, sie sind die Bruchlinien unserer Gesellschaft. Francesca Falk zeigt nun, dass Grenzen vor allem Instrumente sind, die Gewalt produzieren und legitimieren. Grenzen beherrschen die gesellschaftlichen und politischen Debatten und inspirieren zahlreiche wissenschaftliche und künstlerische Arbeiten. Globale Probleme erhalten an Grenzen eine mediale Sichtbarkeit. Das Thema der Grenz- und Migrationspolitik wird in einem Rückgriff auf die Bildlichkeit der politischen Theorie mit und gegen Michel Foucault, John Locke und Thomas Hobbes diskutiert. Auf diese Weise gelingt es, Grenzen in ihrer (...) geschichtlichen Veränderlichkeit und ihrer Kontingenz darzustellen. (shrink)
In this article we present a conceptual overview of relevant interpretations of what state neutrality may imply; we suggest a distinction between inclusive neutrality and exclusive neutrality. This distinction provides a useful framework for understanding the several positions as presented by the parties in the Lautsi case. We conclude by suggesting a solution of the Lautsi case that might provide a more viable solution.
The is a brief response to Matthew Bruenig's "Rethinking Noncombatant Immunity." I argue, contra Bruenig, that political liberalism does not raise any special problems for the view that non-combatants should not be directly targeted by another country's military.
A critical discussion of Toula Nicolacopoulos' 'The Radical Critique of Liberalism'. I analyse her methodology of 'critical reconstructionism' and argue that considerations about the epistemic status of the inquiring practices leading to the formulation of liberal political theory need not affect the viability and desirability of liberal political practice, especially if we adopt a historically-informed realist account of the foundations of liberalism.
In this chapter, I argue that Karl Popper was a communitarian philosopher. This will surprise some readers. Liberals often tout Popper as one of their champions. Indeed, there is no doubt that Popper shared much in common with liberals. However, I will argue that Popper rejected a central, though perhaps not essential, pillar of liberal theory, namely, individualism. This claim may seem to contradict Popper's professed methodological individualism. Yet I argue that Popper was a methodological individualist in name only. In (...) fact, methodological individualism faded from Popper's vocabulary as he moved institutions and situational analysis more firmly to centre-stage. Popper's focus on institutions and situations constitutes what I call his communitarianism. If my interpretation is correct, then theorists in the socio logy of scientific knowledge and communitarian epistemology should reconsider their long-standing distrust of Popper's philosophy. Indeed, they may have much to gain by treating Popper as a friend rather than a foe. (shrink)
In September 2007, more than 100 philosophers came to Prague with the determination to approach Karl Popper's philosophy as a source of inspiration in many areas of our intellectual endeavor. This volume is a result of that effort.