Distributive Justice

So, these are my notes from my presentation on Wednesday. They’re super boring, but hey my humor comes in the moment when I’m sleep deprived and low on coffee. Enjoy.

  • Distributive Justice
  • Julian Lamont and Christi Favor
  • Encyclopedia of Philosophy
  • Distributive justice deals with different distributions of benefits and burdens across society
  • Distributive justice identifies what is morally preferable and provides moral guidance
  • History
    • Most people stayed in the economic position they were born into
    • Economic benefits and burdens were seen as fixed
    • Realized this could be fixed by government
    • Now it’s a hot topic
    • Changes in policy of any kind affect economic distribution
  • Strict egalitarianism
    • Calls for the allocation of equal material goods to all members of society
    • People are morally equal
  • Difference principle
    • allows inequality in materials in order to raise the level of the least advantaged in the society
  • Luck egalitarianism literature
    • Considerate of responsibility and luck
    • Equality of opportunity
  • Desert-based principle
    • People deserve certain economic benefits
  • welfare-based principles
    • Should be designed and assessed according to how they affect welfare
    • Primary moral importance is the level of welfare of people
  • libertarian principles
    • Conflicts with the more important moral demands of liberty or self-ownership
    • Don’t see the market as a means to some desired pattern
  • Feminist critiques
    • Existing principles ignore the particular circumstances of women
    • More sensitive to the fact that women often have primary responsibility for child-rearing and on average, spend less of their lifetimes than men in the market
    • Interest in what difference the practical experience of gender makes to the subject matter or study of justice
  • Distributive principles
    • Vary in what is considered relevant to distributive justice, recipients, on what basis the distribution should be made
  • What I found interesting:
    • Crucially relevant to current political discussion
      • To inform decisions about our societies
      • No society conforms to one theory—not realistic
    • Recommendation: It’s interesting, but really long and in depth
    • Questions:

Inequality Class 8/31

In class on Friday, we did a video conference with Naomi De La Tour to talk about economic inequality. We mostly covered our educational experiences and what was our most important learning experience. Not surprisingly, most of us did not have rave reviews for the American education system. in my experience, our education system has valued our scores over us actually learning. Throughout high school, my math teachers would have us tutor lower math classes. The most startling thing about this experience was that they had no idea how to do math off of a calculator; we always had to do math without the calculator. This ended up creating a communication issue because I could not help the other student without the teacher’s help. Being able to discuss this with people who had gone to different schools, yet had had similar experiences was incredible. It really brought to life the fact that our education system is suffering. No one is learning; we had become cogs in the machine.