Justice

3,644 views

Published on

Justice

Published in: Business

Justice

  1. 1. Justice, I: Plato and Rawls
  2. 2. Introduction, 1 <ul><li>All of us have been the recipients of demands of justice. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>My daughter protesting, “Daddy, it’s not fair for you to get a cookie at night and I don’t.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>All of us have also been in the position of demanding justice. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>I told the builder of my house that, since he replaced defective windows for a neighbor, he should replace my defective windows. “It’s only fair. You did it for other people in the same situation.” </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Introduction, 2 <ul><li>Consider the opening paragraph’s of John Rawls’ classic A Theory of Justice (1971): </li></ul><ul><li>Justice is the first virtue of social institutions, as truth is of systems of thought. A theory however elegant and economical must be rejected or revised if it is untrue; likewise laws and institutions no matter how efficient and well-arranged must be reformed or abolished if they are unjust. Each person possesses an inviolability founded on justice that even the welfare of society as a whole cannot override. For this reason justice denies that the loss of freedom for some is made right by a greater good shared by others. It does not allow that the sacrifices imposed on a few are outweighed by the larger sum of advantages enjoyed by many. Therefore in a just society the liberties of equal citizenship are taken as settled; the rights secured by justice are not subject to political bargaining or to the calculus of social interests. The only thing that permits us to acquiesce in an erroneous theory is the lack of a better one; analogously, an injustice is tolerable only when it is necessary to avoid an even greater injustice. Being first virtues of human activities, truth and justice are uncompro­mising. </li></ul><ul><li>These propositions seem to express our intuitive conviction of the primacy of justice. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Overview <ul><li>Part One: </li></ul><ul><li>Plato: Models of Justice </li></ul><ul><li>Distributive justice </li></ul><ul><li>Part Two: </li></ul><ul><li>Retributive justice </li></ul><ul><li>Justice and reconciliation </li></ul><ul><li>Justice and War </li></ul><ul><li>Justice and Peace </li></ul>
  5. 5. Plato <ul><li>In Plato’s Republic , we find an analysis of four distinct conceptions of justice: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Athenian </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conventional </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cynical </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Platonic </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. The Athenian Conception of Justice: Justice as Honesty in Word and Deed <ul><li>Cephalus, an Athenian elder, presents the first view of justice. </li></ul><ul><li>According to this first definition, justice is ”to speak the truth and to pay your debts” and honor the Gods. </li></ul><ul><li>Socrates objects: aren’t there times when it’s better not to tell the truth and pay debts? If so, this is not a good definition of justice. </li></ul>
  7. 7. The Conventional View of Justice as Helping Friends and Harming Enemies <ul><li>Polemarchus states that the just man is the one who helps his friends and harms his enemies. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ And are enemies also to receive what we owe to them? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ To be sure, he said, they are to receive what we owe them, and an enemy, as I take it, owes to an enemy that which is due or proper to him -- that is to say, evil. “ </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. The Cynical View of Justice Might Makes Right <ul><li>Thrasymachus: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Listen, then, he said; I proclaim that justice is nothing else than the interest of the stronger.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>This view carries over into the present day as legal positivism and Realpolitik . </li></ul>
  9. 9. Plato’s Concept of Justice <ul><li>Question to Glaucon and Adiemantus: Why be just, apart from reward and punishment? </li></ul><ul><li>Justice as harmony </li></ul><ul><ul><li>of the soul (internal) and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>of the state (external) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>the just soul and the just man will live well </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>he who lives well is blessed and happy </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The just man is happy </li></ul></ul></ul>
  10. 10. The Ring of Gyges <ul><li>According to the tradition, Gyges was a shepherd in the service of the king of Lydia ; there was a great storm, and an earthquake made an opening in the earth at the place where he was feeding his flock. Amazed at the sight, he descended into the opening, where, among other marvels, he beheld a hollow brazen horse, having doors, at which he stooping and looking in saw a dead body of stature, as appeared to him, more than human, [ 359e ] and having nothing on but a gold ring; this he took from the finger of the dead and reascended. Now the shepherds met together, according to custom, that they might send their monthly report about the flocks to the king; into their assembly he came having the ring on his finger, and as he was sitting among them he chanced to turn the collet of the ring inside his hand, when instantly he became invisible [ 360a ] to the rest of the company and they began to speak of him as if he were no longer present. He was astonished at this, and again touching the ring he turned the collet outwards and reappeared; he made several trials of the ring, and always with the same result -- when he turned the collet inwards he became invisible, when outwards he reappeared. </li></ul>
  11. 11. The Ring of Gyges <ul><li>Whereupon he contrived to be chosen one of the messengers [ 360b ] who were sent to the court; where as soon as he arrived he seduced the queen, and with her help conspired against the king and slew him, and took the kingdom. Suppose now that there were two such magic rings, and the just put on one of them and the unjust the other; no man can be imagined to be of such an iron nature that he would stand fast in justice. No man would keep his hands off what was not his own when he could safely take what he liked out of the market, [ 360c ] or go into houses and lie with any one at his pleasure, or kill or release from prison whom he would, and in all respects be like a God among men. Then the actions of the just would be as the actions of the unjust; they would both come at last to the same point. And this we may truly affirm to be a great proof that a man is just, not willingly or because he thinks that justice is any good to him individually, but of necessity, for wherever any one thinks that he can safely be unjust, there he is unjust. [ 360d ] For all men believe in their hearts that injustice is far more profitable to the individual than justice, and he who argues as I have been supposing, will say that they are right. If you could imagine any one obtaining this power of becoming invisible, and never doing any wrong or touching what was another's, he would be thought by the lookers -- on to be a most wretched idiot, although they would praise him to one another's faces, and keep up appearances with one another from a fear that they too might suffer injustice. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Types of Justice <ul><li>Distributive Justice </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Benefits and burdens </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Retributive Justice </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Criminal justice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>See Lecture #2 on theories of justice </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Distributive Justice <ul><li>The central question of distributive justice is the question of how the benefits and burdens of our lives are to be distributed. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Justice involves giving each person his or her due. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Equals are to be treated equally. </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Goods Subject to Distribution <ul><li>What is to be distributed? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Income (income tax) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wealth (inheritance tax) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Opportunities (equal opportunities) </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Subjects of Distribution <ul><li>To whom are good to be distributed? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Individual persons </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Groups of persons </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Classes </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Bases for Distribution <ul><li>On what basis should goods be distributed? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Equality (Amartya Sen) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Merit (Hillel Steiner) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Free market transactions (Nozick) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many standards (Walzer, David Miller) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maximizing individual needs or desires </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to make best use of the goods </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Strict Egalitarianism <ul><li>Basic principle: every person should have the same level of material goods and services </li></ul><ul><li>Criticisms </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Unduly restricts individual freedom </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>May conflict with what people deserve </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. John Rawls <ul><li>Rawls’s A Theory of Justice (1971) has set the stage for contemporary discussions of justice. </li></ul><ul><li>Justice as Fairness </li></ul>
  19. 19. A Theory of Justice <ul><li>Each person is to have an equal right to the most extensive total system of equal basic liberties compatible with a similar system of liberty for all. </li></ul><ul><li>Social and economic inequalities are to be arranged so that they are both: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>to the greatest benefit of the least advantaged, consistent with the just savings principle, and </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>attached to offices and positions open to all under conditions of fair equality of opportunity. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>#1 must be satisfied prior to 2, and 2b prior to 2a </li></ul>
  20. 20. The Difference Principle <ul><li>If a system of strict equality maximizes the absolute position of the least advantaged in society, then the Difference Principle advocates strict equality. </li></ul><ul><li>If it is possible to raise the position of the least advantaged further by inequality of income and wealth, then the Difference Principle prescribes inequality up to that point where the absolute position of the least advantaged can no longer be raised. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Critics of the Difference Principle <ul><li>Strict egalitarians: don’t treat anyone differently </li></ul><ul><li>Utilitarians: doesn’t maximize utility </li></ul><ul><li>Libertarian: infringes on liberty through taxation, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Desert-based theorists argue to reward hard work even when it doesn’t help the disadvantaged </li></ul><ul><li>Does not provide sufficient rewards for ambition </li></ul>
  22. 22. Resource-Based Approaches: Ronald Dworkin <ul><li>People should be made to accept the consequences of their choices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>people who choose to work hard to earn more income should not be required to subsidize those choosing more leisure and hence less income </li></ul></ul><ul><li>People should not to suffer consequences of circumstances over which they have no control </li></ul><ul><ul><li>people born with handicaps, ill-health, or low levels of natural endowments have not brought these circumstances upon themselves </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Welfare-Based Approaches <ul><li>Seeks to maximize well-being of society as a whole </li></ul><ul><li>Utilitarian in inspiration: it seeks to maximize welfare for everyone. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Desert-Based Approaches <ul><li>People should be rewarded for their: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Actual contribution </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Effort </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Seeks to raise the overall standard of living by rewarding effort and achievement </li></ul><ul><li>May be applied only to working adults </li></ul>
  25. 25. Conclusion <ul><li>Distributive justice attempts to answer the question of how goods and opportunities in society can be distributed fairly. </li></ul>

×