Saturday, March 22, 2014

Exam #2 on Economic Justice (7 questions)

1- Compare Locke, Rousseau & Hegel's ideas of private property.
2- What is the true foundation of property according to Marx? Explain.
3- Do you agree with Freud that in "abolishing private property we deprive the human love of aggression of one of its instruments, but certainly not the strongest?" Explain either way.
4- Regarding market dynamics, contrast the views of Hayek & Friedman with that of Marx and Cohen.
5- What does Hayek mean by market systems as a "game?"
6- What does Marx mean by stating that money "appears as an inverting power"?
7- What's the lesson to be learned from the Rawls/Nozick dispute regarding economic distribution? Inform your answer with some of the ideas of equality & freedom analyzed in class.

Let's have this test ready for Tuesday, April 1. 
The test is to be handed exactly as the previous one.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

your turn #5

isaiah berlin

hi class, we've talked about lots of things these two weeks. here are some highlights:

1- benjamin constant's comparison between ancients and moderns. the point is that we've gained individuality at the expense of our political power & by political power constant means the "... excercising collectively but directly, several parts of the complete sovereignty (i.e, deliberating, forming alliances, voting laws, pronouncing judgments, etc). do you agree?

2- isaiah berlin's two concepts of liberty(let's take it as a model of subtle political argument in the sense we've defended the problematizing of ideas).

3- dworkin's idea of liberty (different obviously than that of berlin), i.e., liberty is only liberty to do whatever we wish so long as we do not infringe upon the rights of others.

4- h.l.a. hart's thesis of shift of moral standards. this seems kind of close to thomas kuhn's idea of scientific paradigm and michel foucault's idea of episteme. 

moving on to rights,

5- any coincidences between bentham & marx?

6- robert nozick's interesting reading "rights as side-constraints", a discussion which brought up the idea of kant's second formulation and a discussion about using people as means in the political context. needles to say, kant's political philosophy is influenced by his ethics (not viceversa).

7- as per hegel's idea of property (Eigentum) more food for thought, @ #51 from the elements of the philosophy of right, philosophie des rechts:
... since property is the embodiment of personality, (Zum Eigentum als dem Dasein der Persönlichkeit) my inward idea and will that something is to be mine is not enough to make it my property; to secure this end occupancy is requisite. The embodiment which my willing thereby attains involves its recognisability by others. The fact that a thing of which I can take possession is a res nullius is (nobody's property) a self-explanatory negative condition of occupancy, or rather it has a bearing on the anticipated relation to others.
so, for hegel, in a sense, Eingentum becomes a redundant embodiment of my will & freedom. in #46 hegel defines private property as "will becoming objective,"
Da mir im Eigentum mein Wille als persönlicher, somit als Wille des Einzelnen objektiv wird so erhält es den Charakter von Privateigentum...
Since my will, as the will of a person, and so as a single will, becomes objective to me in property, property acquires the character of private property.
go ahead!