This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
WEST COAST DEBATE
PHILOSOPHER AND VALUE HANDBOOK VOLUME 9
American Political Philosophy
Edited by Matt Taylor, Jim Hanson, and Brian Simmonds Written and Researched by Audrey Mink, Brian Ward, Emily Cordo, Jeff Shaw, Keola Whittaker, Matt Stannard, Sarah Stone
PHILOSOPHERS JAMES MADISON ALEXANDER HAMILTON RALPH WALDO EMERSON JOHN DEWEY WOODROW WILSON FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT TOM HAYDEN HOWARD ZINN JOSEPH NYE, JR. RALPH NADER LANI GUINIER THEDA SKOCPOL bell hooks PETER SINGER
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 2
WEST COAST DEBATE
PHILOSOPHER AND VALUE HANDBOOK VOLUME 9
Edited by Brian Simmonds, Matt Taylor, and Jim Hanson Written and Researched by
Audrey Mink, Brian Ward, Emily Cordo, Jeff Shaw, Keola Whittaker, Matt Stannard, and Sarah Stone
About this Handbook The Philosopher and Value Handbook introduces you to arguments, values and philosophers. This volume focuses on American thinkers in philosophy and political theory who will be useful in Lincoln-Douglas value debates. Each chapter begins with an essay explaining the life, work, and ideas of each thinker. It concludes with evidence quotations that attack and defend the philosopher's ideas. Using the arguments in this Handbook We encourage you to read the briefs you will use. Highlight (underline) the key lines you will use in the evidence. Cut out our evidence, incorporate your and others¶ research and analysis and make new arguments. File the materials so that you can easily retrieve them for debate rounds. Practice reading the evidence outloud. Practice applying the arguments to your opponents¶ positions. Practice defending your arguments in rebuttal speeches. Use West Coast Handbooks as a Beginning We hope you enjoy our handbook and find it useful. In saying this, we want to make a strong statement that we make when we coach and that we believe is vitally important to your success: DO NOT USE THIS HANDBOOK AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR YOUR OWN RESEARCH. Instead, let it serve as a beginning. Let it inform you of important arguments, of how to tag and organize your arguments, and to offer citations for further research. Don¶t stagnate in briefs--build upon them by doing your own research. Use the essays to brainstorm research areas and use the evidence and bibliographies as a starting point for your exploration. In doing so, you¶ll use our handbook to become a better debater. Photocopying West Coast Handbooks Our policy gives you the freedom to use the handbook for educational purposes without violating the hard work that we put into the handbook. You can photocopy this handbook under the following circumstances: 1. You can make multiple copies of up to five pages of each West Coast handbook for a class handout. 2. You can make multiple copies of briefs that include evidence from this handbook as long as these photocopied briefs are significantly different from the ones in this handbook and include a significant number of pieces of evidence from sources other than a West Coast handbook. You may not electronically share or distribute this handbook with anyone other than those on your team. For other situations, you can also e-mail us at email@example.com and seek our consent.
ORDER WEST COAST HANDBOOKS 1. E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org 2. Visit the West Coast Web Page at www.wcdebate.com
You can also use the Order Form on the last page of this handbook; call us at 888-255-9133; fax us at 877781-5058; or write to West Coast Publishing; PO Box 8066; Fountain Valley CA 92728-8066 Copyright 2002 (minor update, 2003). West Coast Publishing. All Rights Reserved.
Visit our web page!
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 3
TABLE OF CONTENTS
JAMES MADISON ................................................................................................................................. 5 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 10 MADISON¶S IDEA OF A FEDERAL REPUBLIC MAKES FOR GOOD GOVERNANCE ..................... 11 FEDERALISM IS KEY TO STABLE AND PROSPEROUS GOVERNMENT ........................................ 12 MADISONIAN FEDERALISM IS JUST AN EXCUSE TO CURB REAL DEMOCRACY ...................... 13 MADISON WAS AN ELITIST WHOSE THEORIES FAVORED ONLY RICH LANDOWNERS .......... 14 ALEXANDER HAMILTON................................................................................................................. 15 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 19 FEDERAL CONSTITUTION AND STRONG CENTRAL GOVERNMENTS ARE NEEDED ................ 20 HAMILTON¶S ECONOMIC IDEAS WERE GOOD................................................................................ 21 HAMILTON WAS OPPOSED TO DEMOCRACY.................................................................................. 22 HAMILTON WAS AN ECONOMIC ELITIST ........................................................................................ 23 THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS ................................................................................................................. 24 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 29 THE ANTI-FEDERALIST VISION OF SMALLER GOVERNMENT IS SUPERIOR.............................. 30 ANTI-FEDERALISM GIVES RIGHTS AND PREVENTS DISCRIMINATION...................................... 31 AN ANTI-FEDERALIST GOVERNMENT WOULD BE UNSAFE AND INEFFECTIVE....................... 32 FEDERALIST THEORY PROTECTS INDIVIDUAL AND MINORITY RIGHTS .................................. 33 RALPH WALDO EMERSON .............................................................................................................. 34 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 39 BEAUTY IS THE HIGHEST VALUE ..................................................................................................... 40 POWER IS DERIVED FROM VIRTUOUS BEHAVIOR......................................................................... 40 MORALITY IS INNATE AND TRANSCENDENT................................................................................. 41 CIVIL LAWS MUST BE A REFLECTION OF TRUE, TRANSCENDENT JUSTICE ............................. 41 EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY LEGITIMIZES RUTHLESS POWER AND COMPETITION.................... 42 EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY IS IRRELEVANT TO EVERYDAY AND POLITICAL LIFE ................... 43 JOHN DEWEY ..................................................................................................................................... 44 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 49 TRUTH IS PROGRESSIVE AND EVOLVING ....................................................................................... 50 THERE ARE NO TRANSCENDENT MORAL TRUTHS ........................................................................ 51 DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY IS GENERALLY REMOVED FROM REALITY .......................................... 52 DEWEY¶S JUSTIFICATIONS FOR DEMOCRACY ARE FLAWED ...................................................... 53 DEWEY¶S POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY IGNORES HUMAN NATURE AND HISTORY ....................... 53 WOODROW WILSON......................................................................................................................... 54 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 59 WILSON PROMOTED PROGRESSIVE SOCIAL AGENDAS................................................................ 60 WILSONIAN THOUGHT HELPED CREATE INTERNATIONAL PEACE............................................ 61 WILSON SUPPORTED AMERICAN COLONIALISM AND IMPERIALISM ........................................ 62 WILSON¶S SOCIAL IDEAS WEREN¶T NOT PROGRESSIVE, BUT REPRESSIVE ............................. 63 FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT .................................................................................................................. 64 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 68 FDR¶S ECONOMIC LEGACY IS CRUCIALLY IMPORTANT .............................................................. 69 FDR¶S OVERSEAS POLICY WAS EXCELLENT .................................................................................. 70 THE NEW DEAL WAS BAD FOR THE ECONOMY, PROLONGING THE DEPRESSION .................. 71 FDR¶S ECONOMIC POLICIES WERE NOT TRULY EFFECTIVE ........................................................ 72 TOM HAYDEN..................................................................................................................................... 73 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................... 77 THE 1960s ACTIVISM OF SDS AND HAYDEN WAS POSITIVE......................................................... 78 HAYDEN¶S CRITICS ARE WRONG ± THE 60s WEREN¶T ABOUT MORAL RELATIVISM .............. 79 HAYDEN¶S POLITICAL AGENDA WAS SECONDARY: HE JUST WANTED TROUBLE ................. 80 HAYDEN SAID HE WANTED PEACE, BUT HE REALLY WANTED VIOLENCE ............................. 81
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 97 ISOLATION AND CONTAINMENT DON¶T WORK IN POLICY-MAKING ... 149 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www................................................................................................. 110 LANI GUINIER ......................................................................................................... ..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 120 THEDA SKOCPOL .................................................................................. 116 GUINIER¶S VIEWS AREN¶T BAD: THE MEDIA LIES TO US ABOUT THEM ................................................................. 89 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS UNJUSTIFIED .................................................................................................................................................. 137 HOOKS' CRITICISM IS INEFFECTIVE .................................................................. 88 DEMOCRACY DOESN¶T DELEGITIMIZE CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE ................................................. 91 JOSEPH NYE.................................................................................... 130 bell hooks............................................................................................... 107 GLOBAL FREE TRADE HAS HORRIBLE IMPACTS ....................................................................... 136 THE INTERSECTIONAL APPROACH IS BEST .............................................................. 82 BIBLIOGRAPHY ........... 138 MULTIDIMENSIONALITY IS SUPERIOR TO INTERSECTIONALITY................................ 131 BIBLIOGRAPHY . JR.................................................... Volume 9 Page 4 HOWARD ZINN............................................................................................................West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook............................................................................................................................................................... 140 BIBLIOGRAPHY ................................................................ 145 SPECIESISM IS THE NEW RACISM .... 148 THE INCLUSION OF ANIMALS AS WORTHY OF EQUALITY IS BAD .............................................................. 146 REJECTING THE CRITERIA OF RATIONALITY IS BENEFICIAL ...................................................... 129 MATERNALISM IS FLAWED .................................................................................................... 108 NADER¶S PHILOSOPHY HURTS DEMOCRACY.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 98 NYE¶S NOTION OF SOFT POWER IS WRONG ............................................................................................. 135 RACISM PERMEATES US CULTURE ............................................................................... 126 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY OF THE STATE IS GOOD . 129 MATERNALISM IS BAD FOR WOMEN ........................................................ 96 SOFT POWER AND DEMOCRACY PROMOTION ARE INCREASINGLY KEY ............................................... 87 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS JUSTIFIED ............................................wcdebate...................................... 101 BIBLIOGRAPHY ..................com ...................................................... 92 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................. 111 BIBLIOGRAPHY . 109 NADER¶S ANTI-CORPORATE AGENDA IS UNDESIRABLE . 121 BIBLIOGRAPHY ...................................... 147 RATIONALITY IS BEST STANDARD .......................................................................................................................................................... 90 NONVIOLENT RESISTANCE FAILS ............................. 127 SKOCPOL'S UNDERSTANDING OF MATERNALISM SHOULD BE ADOPTED .............................................................. 100 RALPH NADER .................................... 139 PETER SINGER .......................................................... 117 LANI GUINIER¶S IDEAS ARE GOOD FOR MULTIRACIAL DEMOCRACY ................................................ 118 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WON¶T HELP SOLVE RACISM OR PROMOTE DEMOCRACY ........................................................................................................................ 119 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WILL NOT BE EFFECTIVE ............................................................................................................................................... 106 EGALITARIAN CRITERIA OF JUSTICE IS BEST .............................................. 99 NYE¶S FOREIGN POLICY THINKING IS FLAWED ........................................................... 128 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY CANNOT CREATE CHANGE .........
Indeed. and the structure of representative government remain influential. and I have gladly availed myself of them on many occasions. As a result. is often placed into one or another ideological box. a nationalist or an advocate of states¶ rights. When the Articles of Confederation began to fail. or Democratic-Republican) of the time. and this is especially true when dealing with a thinker of Madison¶s depth. His idea on the separation of church and state. It is said that he is a liberal or a republican. and this is especially true when dealing with a thinker of Madison¶s depth. As a result. The problem as he saw it was too great a regional identification. standing 5" 4" and weighing about 100 pounds.James Madison was a unique member of the group known as the Founding Fathers. But taxonomies seldom do justice to individuals. he often split with co-author Alexander Hamilton on the issues of the day. a follower of the "court" party or of its "country" rival. both of his vice presidents passed on in office. But taxonomies seldom do justice to individuals. like the other leading figures of his generation. a follower of the "court" party or of its "country" rival. Reports that Madison and Clinton invented ³The Funk Bomb´ to contribute to the national defense are unverified. is often placed into one or another ideological box. as opposed to a myopic concern for individual states and localities. was that of ancient lawgivers like Solon and Lycurgus. when he served on the Virginia delegation in the Continental Congress. Madison was much younger than many of the other founders. There is no denying the usefulness of these labels. in fact. Most importantly.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Madison was original thinker given to philosophy. reasons of enlightened men crafting a document in the best interests of all. James Madison. a nationalist or an advocate of states¶ rights. he suggests in Federalist 38.wcdebate.com . No. one of the youngest. Madison scholars agree today ± what Madison and the boys wanted to do was (in Rosen¶s words) ³to circumvent the people. and I have gladly availed myself of them on many occasions. Madison didn¶t adhere devoutly to the party line of any of the three major factions (Federalist. Volume 9 Page 5 JAMES MADISON Every academic field has its schemes of classification. Madison eventually concluded that constitutional conventions were a necessary device for allowing those like himself--those whom he called 'the most enlightened and influential patriots'--to escape from the hold of democratic institutions. A Constitutional Convention was necessary ± but not for the reasons you might suspect. THE LIFE OF MADISON It is with this problem that James Madison enters the picture. We¶ll begin by examining the manner in which Madison busted onto the nation scene in 1780. including George Clinton. He stepped onto the political scene in 1780.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. even if just temporarily. Interestingly enough. Though he was a co-author of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. though. and then discuss the ideas he brought to the table. showing his freedom from dogmatism. There is no denying the usefulness of these labels. and scholarship on the American founding is no different. which he identified in THE FEDERALIST PAPERS as factionalism. president. and scholarship on the American founding is no different. James Madison. As COMMENTARY MAGAZINE¶s Gary Rosen put it: Every academic field has its schemes of classification. though: Madison was the smallest U. Madison feared no effective national government could be formed. men of "preeminent wisdom and approved integrity" who nonetheless were compelled to act outside the bounds of regular authority. who died in office in 1812. Seriously. the avoidance of oppression. Madison was an important figure in the early political life of the country.S. Without a predominant concern for the nation as a whole. anti-Federalist. It is said that he is a liberal or a republican." The example to follow. Madison wondered how a more effective national government might take shape. Not easily categorizable. like the other leading figures of his generation.
the majority is inherently self-interested.) What does the principle of reciprocity say? Let¶s get into that when we discuss the notion of majority tyranny itself before getting into what Madison thought that this condition might cause. Either they will become the next majority. As a skillful politician." He did so through placing both substantive and procedural limits on democratic majority rule of the country. Let¶s just say ³it worked´ and move on. republican Constitution only by means of an aristocratic coup of sorts´ writes Rosen ± a charge that Madison¶s critics then and now would jump all over. Volume 9 Page 6 ³Paradoxical as it may sound. This includes the existence of the electoral college and the bicameral legislature system. Thus. the majority will look to the long-term. especially if that mass had coincident interests. This might cause problems where the majority runs roughshod over the rights of the minority ± hence. like John Ashcroft. needs and desires. You often see a good soldier get rewarded with a plum position when his or her party takes power. MADISON ON THE POLITICAL SYSTEM As an author of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Majority group members will worry that the minority may attract defectors from the majority group. Madison's theory of representative democracy appealed to "the principle of reciprocity´ as a means of dealing with the unwashed heathen masses pillaging the rich.wcdebate. Madison seems to have concluded that America would get a sound. getting ahead of myself ± but I couldn¶t help it. where the House of Representatives is thought to represent the masses and the Senate the landed elite. Let¶s not belabor the point. What might that mean? Well. and hence have the power to govern. The majority voting bloc is probably not going to be together in unanimity until the end of time.´ Reciprocity is the notion that what one group does to another is reciprocal ± what goes around comes around. As a philosophically inclined individual. the self-interested majority worries that the minority may attract defectors from the majority and become the next governing majority itself. (Sorry. This does happen in politics all the time. ³Tyranny of the Majority. he was able to get what he wanted for that state. even though that person is unqualified and unworthy of the job. We¶ll examine the criticisms of Madison below. The idea is that they might use their power to stifle the rights of others. or will merely have the power to make life miserable for the people who made their lives miserable over the past however many years. The safeguards are based on what Madison termed ³the principle of reciprocity. one must take care to build in safeguards against this. Hence. after all. In organizing a republican democracy. MADISON ON THE TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY Madison worried about the overarching power of a powerful mass of people. Madison is famous for having sought to avoid "the tyranny of the majority. he had ideas about what the ideal state would look like. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. While he was hardly alone in this viewpoint ± Hamilton was another who worried about the majority of people rallying against the few who were elected to govern them ± Madison put the most effort into thinking about the philosophical implications. Madison is famous for his advocacy of a federal system with checks and balances to provide stability and satisfy most all interest groups.com .´ But here¶s where Madison¶s principle of reciprocity comes in: the majority might be self-interested. People will vote to actualize their own wants. but they aren¶t blind.
Speaking of potential for abuse. CRITICS OF MADISON People who criticize Madison (and generally Hamilton) do so on one basis: that he was an elitist who was interested in preserving the rights of wealthy white landowners and not much of anybody else. Again. a prominent issue in public life then as now was the role of religion. he had this to say: Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. In a memorandum entitled "Vices of the Political System" (1787) he express skepticism that religion could prevent oppression under a system of republican governance. The struggle continues to this day. He wrote in a pamphlet called MEMORIAL AND REMONSTRANCE a defense of these decisions. Knowing that most Americans didn¶t support granting the delegates to the Constitutional Convention the power to make a new government. published November 22. who betrayed his core constituency with Republican style policies to the tune of sweet re-election. The church. written in June 1785. and Madison had a key role to play in it all. is celebrated by Madison¶s acolytes as "the most powerful defense of religious liberty ever written in America. Will its effects be greater on them considered in an aggregate view? Quite the reverse. Power is to be kept as separated as possible among interest groups and even elected officials. he warned that it might become "a motive to persecution and oppression. MADISON ON RELIGION Madison had serious doubts about the role religion played in public life. This viewpoint manifested itself in 1784-85. This helps to explain his support for what we today call the separation of church and state. Their charges have serious merit. Even Madison¶s own words at the time provide a pretty damning indictment. While his father was an Episcopalian. he wrote "that neither moral nor religious motives can be relied on as an adequate control. If power is temporary and fluid." The debate raged on. The document. then the potential for abuse is minimized. They are not found to be such on the injustice and violence of individuals and lose their efficiency in proportion to the number combined together. where he argued that there was "little to be expected" from religion in a positive way. did best when it was unencumbered from the mandates of a state apparatus. he kept his religious beliefs largely private. as Madison consistently rejected tax support for religious institutions. 1787.´ wasn¶t as pessimistic about the social utility of the church. Could it "be a sufficient restraint? It is not pretended to be such on men individually considered. He consistently repeated these views in speeches of the time. Was the church a positive or a pernicious influence? How best to adapt to its power? The answers to these questions led to the modern notion of two separate spheres for church and state." Madison wrote." In the most famous of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. Volume 9 Page 7 So winning candidates don¶t have to ONLY pay attention to the majority. this is part of the logic of the federal system. Indeed. including one given at the Federal Convention on June 6. Madison reasoned. organic food labeling laws. he believed that separating the two institutions served religion best as well." Even Jefferson. In fact.wcdebate.com . 1787. Number 10. minority preference laws) that may either alienate their political support base ± or attract minority members. who warned of the deadly nature of a ³priest-ridden culture. with Jefferson and Madison on one side (though they split on many other issues.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. with Jefferson considering Madison an aristocrat) and men like Patrick Henry and his supporters on the other. They¶ll be voting on tons of issues (road building bills. The politician always has to be on the lookout ± just ask Bill Clinton.
having witnessed the first events of the French Revolution. and without which perhaps the wisest and freest governments would not possess the requisite stability. In a nation of philosophers.wcdebate. which John Marshall¶s Supreme Court seemed destined to enforce. which fortify opinion." Jefferson would fight Madison on many policies over which they differed based on these principles. frequent appeals would in great measure deprive the government of that veneration. the powerful. . If it be true that all governments rest on opinion. IN CONCLUSION Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Jefferson wrote a letter to Madison in 1789 as Jefferson was preparing to return to the United States after four years as ambassador to France. in proportion to the number with which it is associated. and little support in opposition to them can be gained to it from the unreflecting multitude. Jefferson asked his colleague "Whether one generation of men has a right to bind another?" He concluded. and its practical influence on his conduct. they are known to have a double effect. this consideration ought to be disregarded. that "no such obligation can be so transmitted. the mass of American people. when left alone. This "unreflecting multitude´ was. in Madison¶s view. . But a nation of philosophers is as little to be expected as the philosophical race of kings wished for by Plato. Madison replies? In order to promote stability of government. is contained in FEDERALIST PAPER NUMBER 49: As every appeal to the people would carry an implication of some defect in the government. And in every other nation. would be sufficiently inculcated by the voice of an enlightened reason. the people Jefferson feared and mistrusted. the third author of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS: ³the people who own the country ought to govern it. Madison wanted to deliver power into the hands of a ³better sort´ of people ± the rich. it is no less true that the strength of opinion in each individual. and acquires firmness and confidence. Jefferson¶s first principles included the idea that government was only just with the consent of the governed. to have the prejudices of the community on its side. . and attacked both Madison and Hamilton for it. and that bypassing that consent was unjust. Perhaps the defining quotation from this period and this viewpoint comes from John Jay. which should be declared "void and of no force. In order to stay away from factionalism and prevent the people from losing faith in government. this influential class of citizens will be turned against the plan. like man himself is timid and cautious. not particularly wealthy) might gang up and plunder the rich. and the summation of his argument.com . A reverence for the laws. Madison reasoned. All the most enlightened and respectable citizens will be its advocates. A plan adjusted to this idea will recommend itself. the government must continue to go about its business as usual. are antient as well as numerous. When Madison said ³tyranny of the majority. which time bestows on everything.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.´ Jefferson also battled with Madison and Hamilton over the ³implied powers´ doctrine. which Jefferson (and every sane person) thought were unconstitutional. while this doctrine effectively gave the governing bodies power to do whatever they thought was best.´ Jefferson was a staunch critic of this viewpoint. Volume 9 Page 8 We ought to consider what [is] right & necessary in itself for the attainment of a proper Government. Jefferson said that if the federal government was to violate its own laws. the most rational government will not find it a superfluous advantage. The reason of man.´ he meant that the majority of Americans (still rural farmers. When the examples. depend much on the number which he supposes to have entertained the same opinion. including the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798. Should we fall short of the necessary and proper point. the people must not be allowed or required to challenge every decision made by the ³better class of men´ ruling them. Jefferson believed that the federal government ought only have the powers expressly granted by the people. His final shot at Jefferson. the people possessed a "natural right" to reject the acts.
he had more influence than most any of them ± even Jefferson. the most based in a sense of ethics. they¶re worth checking out. When the examples. would be sufficiently inculcated by the voice of an enlightened reason. The reason of man. A plan adjusted to this idea will recommend itself. which time bestows on everything. the most rational government will not find it a superfluous advantage.´ The youngest of the founding fathers.wcdebate. and without which perhaps the wisest and freest governments would not possess the requisite stability. in proportion to the number with which it is associated. In a nation of philosophers. and its practical influence on his conduct. And in every other nation. . like man himself is timid and cautious. Should we fall short of the necessary and proper point.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. If it be true that all governments rest on opinion. depend much on the number which he supposes to have entertained the same opinion. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. His FEDERALIST PAPERS are the most philosophical. they are known to have a double effect. Even if you disagree with their ultimate conclusions. are antient as well as numerous. whose populist ideas lost out in the long run to Madison¶s aristocratic notions. . this consideration ought to be disregarded. which fortify opinion. A reverence for the laws. to have the prejudices of the community on its side. But a nation of philosophers is as little to be expected as the philosophical race of kings wished for by Plato. and acquires firmness and confidence. As every appeal to the people would carry an implication of some defect in the government.com . All the most enlightened and respectable citizens will be its advocates. and the most passionately argued. this influential class of citizens will be turned against the plan. Volume 9 Page 9 James Madison should be known for a lot more than being a short guy who had a wife named ³Dolley.We ought to consider what [is] right & necessary in itself for the attainment of a proper Government. frequent appeals would in great measure deprive the government of that veneration. . and little support in opposition to them can be gained to it from the unreflecting multitude. it is no less true that the strength of opinion in each individual. when left alone.
.html and http://www.html. David. Kans.gov/loc/madison/rosen-paper. 1776-1826: New York. 1997). N. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.Y.html. 10. Volume 9 Page 10 BIBLIOGRAPHY Banning. THE REPUBLIC OF LETTERS: THE CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN JEFFERSON AND MADISON. Irving.com . Gary. IF MEN WERE ANGELS: JAMES MADISON AND THE HEARTLESS EMPIRE OF REASON: Lawrence.org/dailys/11-15-00. 1995. Matthews. Meyers. 2000. FEDERALIST PAPER No. June 1997.com/federalist10." LIBRARY OF CONGRESS JAMES MADISON COMMEMORATION SYMPOSIUM. ed.com. http://federalistpapers. James Morton.gov/loc/madison/banning-paper. accessed April 22. ³Was James Madison an Original Thinker?´ LIBRARY OF CONGRESS JAMES MADISON COMMEMORATION SYMPOSIUM.html. 1981. under the name Publius. Marvin. 1787. Library of Congress.gov/loc/madison/hutson-paper. 1780-l792: Ithaca.loc. 2002.loc. Madison. 1912. Samples. 1995. 2001..loc. COMMENTARY MAGAZINE. James. 1941-61. 2001. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY.html and http://www. http://www. http://www. Hanover.gov/loc/madison/symposium. THE SACRED FIRE OF LIBERTY: JAMES MADISON AND THE CREATION OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC. Banning. March 16. Hutson.gov/loc/madison/hutson-paper.´ LIBRARY OF CONGRESS JAMES MADISON COMMEMORATION SYMPOSIUM. N. Beard. Rosen. ed.. THE MIND OF THE FOUNDER: SOURCES OF THE POLITICAL THOUGHT OF JAMES MADISON. 1995. Smith. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.H.. Richard K.html and http://www. Va.loc. THE LIFE OF JAMES MADISON: Indianapolis.gov/loc/madison/symposium..West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2001. November 15.html. http://www. ³James Madison: Federalist. "James Madison and the Social Utility of Religion: Risks vs. Mattern..html. Lancej. James Madison's "Advice to My Country" (Charlottesville. http://www.loc. University of Kentucky. November 22. Rewards.gov/loc/madison/symposium. March 16. John. James.cato.wcdebate. All of Madison¶s FEDERALIST PAPERS are available at http://federalistpapers. March 16. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. Charles historian. Brant. Lance. Z MAGAZINE. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute. Noam. Chomsky.html and http://www.loc.loc.
adversed to the rights of other citizens. It will be found.html. particularly. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY. I give Ms. who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion. as when he contemplates their propensity to this dangerous vice. equally the friends of public and private faith. np. is the latest convert to this cause. whether amounting to a majority or a minority of the whole. November 15. Clinton opposes the Electoral College only because Al Gore might lose the presidency despite getting a plurality of the popular vote.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Complaints are everywhere heard from our most considerate and virtuous citizens. The valuable improvements made by the American constitutions on the popular models. provides a proper cure for it.cato. However the election turns out. and of public and personal liberty. that the public good is disregarded in the conflicts of rival parties. for that prevailing and increasing distrust of public engagements. as they continue to be the favorite and fruitful topics from which the adversaries to liberty derive their most specious declamations. that some of the distresses under which we labor have been erroneously charged on the operation of our governments. Hillary Rodham Clinton. A FEDERAL REPUBLIC CONTROLS FACTIONALISM AND VIOLENCE James Madison. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute. on a candid review of our situation. but by the superior force of an interested and overbearing majority. But that philosophy contravenes the spirit of our Constitution as expressed by its primary author. not according to the rules of justice and the rights of the minor party. 2002. These must be chiefly. I understand a number of citizens. to contend that they have as effectually obviated the danger on this side. that our governments are too unstable. accessed April 22. http://federalistpapers. this amalgamation gave small and medium-sized states more leverage in presidential elections than they would have in a popular vote. effects of the unsteadiness and injustice with which a factious spirit has tainted our public administrations. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. that other causes will not alone account for many of our heaviest misfortunes. Among the numerous advantages promised by a well constructed Union. We should stick with Madison's idea of a federal republic and preserve the Electoral College.cato. and. p. 3.org/dailys/11-15-00. or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community. and confusion introduced into the public councils. which are echoed from one end of the continent to the other. of known facts will not permit us to deny that they are in some degree true. without violating the principles to which he is attached. By a faction.com . 2002. The friend of popular governments never finds himself so much alarmed for their character and fate. What about the Electoral College? Madison thought it embodied the "federal will" of the nation. 1787.com/federalist10. FEDERALIST PAPER No. both ancient and modern. However anxiously we may wish that these complaints had no foundation. Washington's newest celebrity. therefore. injustice. if not wholly. accessed April 22. 2000. THE ³FEDERAL WILL´ IS MANIFESTED BY THE AMERICAN ELECTORAL COLLEGE John Samples. none deserves to be more accurately developed than its tendency to break and control the violence of faction. have. http://www. November 15. 2. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY. cannot certainly be too much admired. Some will say Ms. np. The instability.html. proponents of pure democracy will call for the abolition of the Electoral College. indeed. at the same time. As Madison knew.org/dailys/11-15-00. and alarm for private rights. accessed April 22. or of interest. in truth. but it will be found. as was wished and expected. 2000. been the mortal diseases under which popular governments have everywhere perished. He will not fail. the evidence. p. Sen. 2002. Volume 9 Page 11 MADISON¶S IDEA OF A FEDERAL REPUBLIC MAKES FOR GOOD GOVERNANCE 1. November 22. He found that fair given the influence of large states in other areas. http://www. Her opposition to the Electoral College is entirely in step with her underlying philosophy of government: centralizing liberalism. MADISON¶S IDEA OF A FEDERAL REPUBLIC IS THE BEST GOVERNMENTAL POLICY John Samples. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute. to set a due value on any plan which. but it would be an unwarrantable partiality. By that he meant that the Electoral College included both the will of the nation as expressed in the popular vote and the will of the states in a federal system (every state large or small gets two electors). 10. James Madison. Clinton more credit than that.html.wcdebate. and that measures are too often decided.
10. If we abolish the Electoral College.html. Hence it is that such democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention. np. and they hoped strong states would limit an expansive central government. 2002. 1787. and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths. in almost every case. they would.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. np.com/federalist10. -. Does the advantage consist in the substitution of representatives whose enlightened views and virtuous sentiments render them superior to local prejudices and schemes of injustice? It will not be denied that the representation of the Union will be most likely to possess these requisite endowments. in many cases. Does it consist in the greater security afforded by a greater variety of parties. have erroneously supposed that by reducing mankind to a perfect equality in their political rights. which will rarely prevail over the immediate interest which one party may find in disregarding the rights of another or the good of the whole. is enjoyed by a large over a small republic. http://federalistpapers. p. Does it. that the CAUSES of faction cannot be removed.html. 1787.cato. FEDERALIST PAPER No. http://www. FEDERALIST PAPER No. 10. and their passions. in fine.html. be perfectly equalized and assimilated in their possessions. and render them all subservient to the public good.is enjoyed by the Union over the States composing it. again. November 15.wcdebate. MADISONIAN FEDERALISM SOLVES FOR BETTER DEMOCRACY John Samples. and there is nothing to check the inducements to sacrifice the weaker party or an obnoxious individual. Madison's point about federalism is also well taken. November 22. A common passion or interest will. PURE DEMOCRACY WOULD BE DIVISIVE AND FRACTIOUS: FEDERALISM IS BETTER James Madison. be felt by a majority of the whole. ought to be our zeal in cherishing the spirit and supporting the character of Federalists. The Founders feared the arbitrary exercise of political power. increase this security. a communication and concert result from the form of government itself. Theoretic politicians. accessed April 22. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 2000. And according to the degree of pleasure and pride we feel in being republicans. p.org/dailys/11-15-00. Volume 9 Page 12 FEDERALISM IS KEY TO STABLE AND PROSPEROUS GOVERNMENT 1. 3. A FEDERAL REPUBLIC IS MUCH BETTER THAN A DEMOCRACY James Madison. and that relief is only to be sought in the means of controlling its EFFECTS. at the same time. np. November 22. 1787. who have patronized this species of government. can such an adjustment be made at all without taking into view indirect and remote considerations. against the event of any one party being able to outnumber and oppress the rest? In an equal degree does the increased variety of parties comprised within the Union. FEDERALIST PAPER No.com . In the extent and proper structure of the Union. we will make it harder for the states to provide this essential defense of liberty. From this view of the subject it may be concluded that a pure democracy. Hence. And we will do so just as bold policy successes in the states have shown the value of these "laboratories of democracy. the extent of the Union gives it the most palpable advantage. in controlling the effects of faction." 2.com/federalist10. 2002. 2002. accessed April 22. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute.html. It is in vain to say that enlightened statesmen will be able to adjust these clashing interests. 10. consist in the greater obstacles opposed to the concert and accomplishment of the secret wishes of an unjust and interested majority? Here. The inference to which we are brought is. therefore. accessed April 22. we behold a republican remedy for the diseases most incident to republican government. http://federalistpapers. np. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY. accessed April 22. BECAUSE THE ENLIGHTENED WON¶T ALWAYS RULE. FEDERALISM IS BEST James Madison. http://federalistpapers. 4.com/federalist10. Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. p. their opinions. p. by which I mean a society consisting of a small number of citizens. who assemble and administer the government in person. that the same advantage which a republic has over a democracy. Nor. have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property. can admit of no cure for the mischiefs of faction. it clearly appears. November 22. 2002.
not only first. "the majority. nevertheless. In advocating a long term in order to give independence and firmness to the Senate. MADISON WANTED ARISTOCRACY." And again. the force. Madison urged: "In future times. then was the main object of government. men who from pride will support consistency and permanency. under the influence of their common situation. 31. -. NOT PEOPLE Charles Beard. historian. Governor Morris wanted to check the "precipitancy. 31. They were anxious above everything else to safeguard the rights of private property against any leveling tendencies on the part of the propertyless masses.or. was the great object to which their inquiries had been directed. In the tenth number of The Federalist. the protection of these faculties was the first object of government.wcdebate. 1912." While these extreme doctrines were somewhat counterbalanced by the democratic principles of Mr. but without any other sort of property. Mr. to give notice of the future danger. they will become the tools of opulence and ambition. changeableness. MADISON ADMITTED FAVORING INEQUALITY Charles Beard. 1912. -. historian. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. No agrarian attempts have yet been made in this country. but symptoms of a levelling spirit. 1912. Madison argued in a philosophic vein in support of the proposition that it was necessary to base the political system on the actual conditions of "natural inequality. hence.com . p. correctly stated the sound historical fact when he declared: "Life and liberty were generally said to be of more value than property. he added. Wilson.Such an aristocratic body will keep down the turbulence of democracy. and at the same time to preserve the spirit and form of popular government. Governor Morris." 3. he described these impending changes: "An increase in the population will of necessity increase the proportion of those who will labor under all the hardships of life and secretly sigh for a more equitable distribution of its blessings. from the protection of different and unequal faculties of acquiring property the possession of different degrees and kinds of property immediately resulted. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. the power will slide into the hands of the former. he contended. NOT DEMOCRACY Charles Beard. Madison warned the convention that in framing a system which they wished to last for ages they must not lose sight of the changes which the ages would produce in the forms and distribution of property. but second. Volume 9 Page 13 MADISONIAN FEDERALISM IS JUST AN EXCUSE TO CURB REAL DEMOCRACY 1. in a certain quarter." Uniformity of interests throughout the state. King also agreed that "property was the primary object of society. These will either combine.in which case the rights of property and the public liberty will not be secure in their hands. 31.." and Mr. An accurate view of the matter." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. in which case there will be equal danger on another side. it was the great merit of the newly framed Constitution that it secured the rights of the minority against "the superior force of an interested and overbearing majority. as we have understood have sufficiently appeared. would prove that property was the main object of society. p. According to the equal laws of suffrage. 2. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. a great majority of the people will not only be without land. and in his opinion. was impossible on account of the diversity in the faculties of men. historian.. in support of the argument for a property qualification on voters.aristocracy. having such coexistent passion or interest.If property. the unequal distribution of wealth inevitably led to a clash of interests in which the majority was liable to carry out its policies at the expense of the minority..West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. certainly it ought to be one measure of the influence due to those who were to be affected by the government. the mind or sense of the people at large. MADISON¶S VIEW PROTECTED PROPERTY. who urged that "the government ought to possess." Mr.. These may in time outnumber those who are placed above the feelings of indigence. and excess" of the representatives of the people by the ability and virtue of men" of great and established property -. in concluding this splendid piece of logic. from the influence of these on the sentiments and views of the respective proprietors ensued a division of society into different interests and parties. from which the rights of property originated. must be rendered by their number and local situation unable to concert and carry into effect schemes of oppression". p." Madison doubtless summed up in a brief sentence the general opinion of the convention when he said that to secure private rights against minority factions. in speaking on the problem of apportioning representatives. what is more probable.
wcdebate.'' which are property rights. branch. When the facts are stated clearly. or any government entity. whose views largely prevailed. as some historians do. James Madison.'' giving land to the landless. associated group. In the debates on the Constitution.'' To achieve this goal. Property has no rights. partnership. the property of landed proprietors would be insecure.'' he meant humans. the leading Framer of the constitutional system was an astute and lucid political thinker. In a current official document.'' a concept that doubtless would have shocked Madison and others with intellectual roots in the Enlightenment and classical liberalism -.pre-capitalist. June 1997. Volume 9 Page 14 MADISON WAS AN ELITIST WHOSE THEORIES FAVORED ONLY RICH LANDOWNERS 1. and ``secure the permanent interests of the country. by the late 19th century the founding doctrines took on a new and much more oppressive form. estate. we can appreciate the force of the doctrine that ``the people who own the country ought to govern it. if elections ``were open to all classes of people. and the rise of corporate forms of economic enterprise. trust. association. An agrarian law would soon take place.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Z MAGAZINE. p. the phrase ``rights of property'' means the right to property. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. 2.'' delivering power to a ``better sort'' of people and excluding ``those who were not rich. corporation or other organization (whether or not organized under the laws of any State). Z MAGAZINE. and the constitutional system generally. Madison pointed out that in England. A CONSENSUS OF MADISONIAN SCHOLARS AGREES HE WAS AN ELITIST Noam Chomsky. political power must rest in the hands of ``the wealth of the nation. 8. But the formulation is misleading. 8. ```Person' is broadly defined to include any individual. typically material property. offered only limited public participation in the political arena. Among Madisonian scholars. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 3. that these principles lost their force as the national territory was conquered and settled. his biographer observes. a personal right which must be privileged above all others.'' men who would ``sympathize sufficiently'' with property rights and ``be safe depositories of power over them.'' while the rest are marginalized and fragmented. When Madison spoke of ``rights of persons. Whatever one's assessment of those years. he urged. p. well born. MADISON WANTED TO PROTECT THE RICH MINORITY AGAINST THE MAJORITY Noam Chomsky. June 1997. 8. One may argue. Z MAGAZINE. sought to balance the rights of persons against the rights of property. Furthermore. It is the responsibility of government. there is a consensus that ``The Constitution was intrinsically an aristocratic document designed to check the democratic tendencies of the period. the native population driven out or exterminated. The system that he and his associates were designing must prevent such injustice. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. In both principle and practice. p.'' ``one of [the] favorite maxims'' of Madison's influential colleague John Jay. Madison declared. But the growth of the industrial economy. and anti-capitalist in spirit. ``to protect the minority of the opulent against the majority. June 1997.'' These conclusions are often qualified by the observation that Madison. CAPITALISM HAS SIGNIFICANTLY ALTERED THE WAY WE SHOULD SEE MADISON Noam Chomsky. led to a completely new meaning of the term. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology.com . or prominent from exercising political power. and is crucially different from others in that one person's possession of such rights deprives another of them.
Volume 9 Page 15 ALEXANDER HAMILTON Alexander Hamilton is probably best known as one of the authors of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. He would hold to this model in large measure for all his life. This model would have devices that would protect class and property interests. making one legendary speech where he attacked the states¶ rights ideas of William Paterson. In those papers. Due to Hamilton¶s inside connections. After Washington died.an aristocratic.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. He served as a Lieutenant Colonel under George Washington for four years during the Revolutionary War. Hamilton cited the British government as the best model for the new government -. Hamilton constantly rebuked him in public. He was the only delegate from New York to support the ratification of the constitution ± but he did so vociferously. an anti-federalist who would scrap mightily over those issues with Hamilton throughout their lives. While Jefferson was not necessarily a states¶ rights proponent in the way we understand these terms today. This is one of many issues that he and Thomas Jefferson would clash on. coercive. He saw centralization of authority as necessary to protect essential functions. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Hamilton first began to press the ideas that became extremely important in the formulation of the union ± he believed in a strong central government and a strong national bank. blackening Hamtilon¶s eye and ratcheting up tension between Hamilton and Adams ± not to mention Hamilton and Burr. Shortly before the presidential election of 1800. Burr then PUBLISHED a copy of it. an influential series of pamphlets arguing for a federal constitution to replace the Articles of Confederation. rebuke and scandal. THE LIFE OF HAMILTON Hamilton started his career with military action during the revolt against British colonialism. Either that. the letter contained some confidential cabinet information. Either way. HIS IDEAS Hamilton. and generally made himself a pain. were extremely important during the early days of the United States. the leadership of the Federalist Party split between Hamilton and John Adams. which Hamilton published (along with John Jay and James Madison) under the name Publius. making it available to the general public. But of all the political ideas and economic philosophy that Hamilton offered to the world. then his ideas. Hamilton signed the new American Constitution for his state. centralized union that would be a representative republic. Hamilton was politically active throughout his life. Hamilton wrote a scathing letter attacking Adams. One of those actions was to inflame Hamilton¶s feud with Aaron Burr as well. was vocally against states¶ rights. When the Constitutional Convention was convened. opinions that broke strongly from one notable politician of the era ± Thomas Jefferson. he did argue that the American government was being divided into a struggle between the ³aristocrats´ who fear and mistrust the people and the ³democrats´ who trust the people and consider them the most trustworthy repository of the national interest. or the fact that he was killed by political rival Aaron Burr in a duel. as an aristocrat.com . he also offered a life of tragedy. While Hamilton intended to closely control distribution of his missive.wcdebate. talked to cabinet members in attempts to undermine Adams¶s policy. After Adams was elected President. THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. famously serving as a delegate at the Constitutional Convention and encouraging the advance of federal power. his political rival Aaron Burr secured a copy for himself. Much of this is forgotten today. Let¶s start the process of remembrance with an exploration of his life. he was an influential figure in the early days of this country who is too often overlooked today.
One of Hamilton¶s lasting legacies is the creation of a national bank. In fact." and the "general welfare. Hamilton¶s logic: "[the government has] a right to employ all the means requisite.´ This kind of liberal constructionism is deeply at odds with what is called ³strict constructionism. the means are authorized. Volume 9 Page 16 As labels of the day went. Hamilton¶s basic argument is a qualified version of one used by Madison himself in the Federalist.com .West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.´ as is often claimed. Hamilton was the Federalist¶s Federalist. HAMILTON¶S ECONOMIC IDEAS His economic ideas were no less radical." one could think of him as one of the first ³big government liberals." Washington passed the Bank Bill in February of 1791.´ which argues that the federal government only gets to do what the constitution EXPLICITLY says it gets to do. This is perhaps the most concrete consequence of Hamilton¶s idea of implied powers. or not contrary to the essential ends of political society. The document argued for a system of protective duties designed to promote the interests of American businessmen and manufacturers. "implied powers. 44) that "wherever the end is required. Even then-President George Washington. they became relatively widespread in the early days of the United States.´ Because Hamilton¶s economic ideas were so influential. the legacy of Britain. he suggested the direct collection of federal taxes by federal agents ± a fairly radical stance in such an anti-tax climate. Hamilton¶s interpretation opens up the federal government¶s role considerably. duties and other legislation designed to shelter fledgling industries. As early as 1776. The Swiss economic historian Paul Bairoch (in his book ECONOMICS AND WORLD HISTORY) has argued that this shows America does not have its roots in so-called ³free trade. he claims. In 1781 he promoted the idea that a nonexcessive public debt would be a good thing." Ironically. impressive or important. allowing it to do things that many of the anti-Federalists opposed. This was also one of the most controversial agendas he advanced. every particular power necessary for doing it is included. The Opinion sees Hamilton flesh out his view of the implied powers of the constitution. and which are not precluded by restrictions & exceptions specified in the constitution. Because he advocated the constitutional doctrines of liberal construction. These doctrines meant that even if a role for the federal government was not explicitly stated. America probably would not have successfully industrialized at all if not for Hamiltonian policies of protective tariffs. Hamilton¶s staunch ally. was a vocal opponent of the national bank. and fairly applicable to the attainment of the ends of such power.´ These ideas were later codified in the decisions of Supreme Court Justice John Marshall. wherever a general power to do a thing is given. opposed the project and intended to veto the bill. it could be interpreted under on of the more broad clauses of the constitution ± such as the clause that says it¶s the job of the national government to ³promote the general welfare. He wanted to protect the working classes against what he saw as the onset of aristocracy and monarchy. we would call this viewpoint ³protectionism. (no. Madison (with strict constructionist logic) claimed that the national bank was unconstitutional since the constitution did not explicitly approve such an institution. Jefferson was considered a Democratic-Republican.wcdebate. Today. who always mistrusted the financier set (and the federal government). Hamilton had to work magic ± in the form of his now famous Opinion on the Constitutionality of the Bank ± in order to convince his longtime friend. They probably would not have agreed to the constitution if they had known some of the things he had in mind. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. His REPORT ON MANUFACTURERS (1791) was the first major departure from Adam Smith¶s WEALTH OF NATIONS (1776). shortened to Republican. Jefferson. or not immoral.
Volume 9 Page 17 Jefferson hated these economic ideas. punishable by fine and imprisonment. will only be more concentrated in each part. Aaron Burr had been a political rival of Hamilton¶s since at least 1777. There are a lot of Hamiltonians still around in American politics. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. more centralized government. Jefferson decried Hamilton¶s desire to increase the public debt. disputed the geographical distribution of the benefits (Jefferson thought farmers would get screwed. If some farmers lose out on their land and enterprises so that my friends and I can run the country. administering no relief to our real disease. I know he was smart. and consequently the more virulent. Twenty-five men were arrested and their newspapers forced to shut down as a result of this legislation ± including Benjamin Franklin's grandson. accusing him of engaging in a monarchical conspiracy." He referred (in his last letter on politics) to democracy as a ³disease. HAMILTON¶S OPPRESSIVE IDEAS Hamilton¶s notion of a strong national government did err on the side of oppression at times. At least he admitted it and didn't overtly destabilize the government." For those of you that don¶t speak Old Uptight American. my friends and I are rich. has been awarded him by a suffrage now universal. as should be clear. Perhaps the most balanced view came from Madison. and the moral qualities of integrity and honor in a captivating degree. then his closest aide.com . saying this behavior ³nourishes in our citizens vice & idleness instead of industry & morality. the translation from Old Uptight American: Hamilton preferred a more robust. Allegedly. at least he had SOME integrity and honor about him." Such publications were made high misdemeanors. when Burr sent a contemptuous letter to Washington about Hamilton. Hamilton¶s response: "It is a strange perversion of ideas.´ saying that "a clear sacrifice of great positive advantages. Benjamin Franklin Bache. "Men. confronting Washington with a list of 21 objections to Hamilton¶s proposed policies. where Hamilton repeatedly ripped Burr in public speeches. and as novel as it is extraordinary. If his theory of government deviated from the republican standard he had the candour to avow it. so get over it. And we¶re just going to get richer as the country grows. and many other things. His morals -.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. which is democracy. This is best evidenced by his warm support for the final form of the Alien and Sedition Laws of 1798. that men should be deemed corrupt & criminal for becoming proprietors in the funds of their Country.wcdebate. his customary colleague. the poison of which." This shows his opinion of the average American. Jefferson considered rich men who used their capital to invest in enterprises not their own (who we might today call venture capitalists) to be the lowest forms of life on earth. More on that in our final section. and the greater merit of co-operating faithfully in maturing and supporting a system which was not his choice.well. scandalous and malicious writing. That culminated in the elections season of 1804. editor of the Philadelphia DemocratRepublican Aurora. compared to Jefferson¶s continued desire to trust the public. he pardoned all of those convicted.) Hamilton constantly disputed Jefferson¶s claim that the general public should control government." he said. DENOUMENT We know about the scandal that ended up killing Hamilton. without any counterbalancing good. by a subdivision. here¶s a translation: yeah. These acts made illegal the publication of "any false. and everyone else knew it too. These laws were mostly used to silence dissent. (When Jefferson was elected. Perhaps his sternest rebuke to Hamilton came based on Jefferson¶s moral objections investment speculation. as much due to his belief in free speech as to his desire to stick his thumb in Hamilton¶s eye." Hamilton¶s ideas seemed to Jefferson to be a lot closer to King George III than to any American thinker." Again. Madison¶s final assessment of Hamilton was written in 1831: "That he possessed intellectual powers of the first order. "are reasoning rather than reasonable animals. Even sometime allies recognized the elitist tendency in Hamilton. which the urban elite would benefit). that¶s a price I¶m willing to pay.
my love for you and my precious children would have been alone a decisive motive. natural politicians. CONCLUSION When you learn about the so-called ³Founding Fathers´ in school. not the government's. And.´ Amazingly. A journalist reported to the country that Hamilton "could detail . . When Reynolds found out he demanded ³satisfaction´ . Hamilton admitted he had given James Reynolds money -. it was on. At that point. Reynolds had evidence. went to Hamilton's office to confront him." No word on whether he penned a similar missive to James Reynolds¶ wife. and by the press). And the money wasn¶t for speculation (though that is apparently how Reynolds used it ± proving Jefferson¶s maxim about the moral character of speculators). and while Clinton merely threatened to bash William Safire in the nose. Reynolds was a clever pimp who was now harboring some very destructive information on one of the highest officials in the country. James Reynolds. That¶s when it got weird.. Abraham Venable. without sacrifices which would have rendered me unworthy of your esteem. Volume 9 Page 18 But he crossed the line when he said (at an event attended by a Burr supporter.money. was bragging that Hamilton had given him money out of the treasury to play the stock market. it just ain¶t so ± and it¶s somewhat comforting that the politicians of days past were just as sleazy. he had more dirt on him that he wouldn¶t dish just yet. too. and sexually predatory as the ones we see today. is the final record from his life: "If it had been possible for me to have avoided the interview. greedy. motivated. Hamilton¶s note to his wife. the three congressmen were satisfied by Hamilton¶s explanation. One could make a strong case for Hamilton as the Bill Clinton of his day: both were extremely intelligent. Burr challenged Hamilton to a duel and killed him. when a pamphlet was published with the allegations. That happened in 1792. a still more despicable opinion" of Burr. It gets better. Three congressmen -. written directly before the duel with Burr. But the Burr scandal wasn¶t the only hot water Hamilton found himself embroiled in.wcdebate. It wasn¶t even the juiciest. and agreed to keep it quiet. Some Hamilton apologists insist that. That money had changed hands. But it was not possible. a shady character currently in jail.com . As historian Lisa Marie de Carolis noted. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. ³Mr. he did not intend to fire at Burr. As I hope this essay makes clear. They apparently did. Hamilton was technically born illegitimate.James Monroe.but he said it was his own money.. and Frederick Muhlenberg ± thought they had found evidence that Hamilton was misappropriating government funds. both saw their records tarnished by stunning sex scandals. that though he held "despicable" opinions of Burr.Adieu best of wives and best of Women. until July 1797. but a BRIBE. while Clinton was the child of a single mother. the public could be kept in the dark no longer. when Hamilton headed up the Treasury Department. you get the impression that they were these morally upstanding men of a bygone era where honor was protected at all costs. Monroe et. Hamilton was having an affair Hamilton with Reynolds' wife. Reynolds said that Hamilton could continue the affair so long as the money kept coming. Maria. though he showed up to the duel and took a pistol. al. in Sports Center parlance. Hamilton actually followed through with physical violence against a political rival. . .West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.
FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. Loyola University. 1993. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. Washington/London: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. Chomsky. New York/Oxford: Oxford University Press. ALEXANDER HAMILTON. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton. NATIONAL REVIEW. Chicago. October 19. 1991. Frisch. senior editor. University of Groningen. Noam.let. Miller. Elkins. 1999. http://odur. Lisa Marie. SELECTED WRITINGS AND SPEECHES OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON. ALEXANDER HAMILTON: PORTRAIT IN PARADOX.rug.2002. Lanham/New York/London: University Press of America. Gerald. Volume 9 Page 19 BIBLIOGRAPHY Beard. Stanley and Eric McKitrick. Stourzh. Stanford: Stanford University Press. Cooke. Frisch. Z MAGAZINE. ed.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00.zmag. New York and London: Columbia University Press. THE AGE OF FEDERALISM. 1961--79. Brookhiser. 13. Charles Scribner's Sons. 1964. ed. ALEXANDER HAMILTON AND THE IDEA OF REPUBLICAN GOVERNMENT. Department of Alfa-informatica. 1912.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2002. John C. ed.com . New York: Harper & Brothers.wcdebate. Richard. Jacob E. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology.org/chomsky/talks/9410-education. January 1995. ALEXANDER HAMILTON AND THE POLITICAL ORDER... Charles. 1970.htm. Mellon Lecture. Morton J. AMERICAN. p. Morton J. accessed May 1. Cooke. Noam. Chomsky. historian. New York: Harper & Row. 1997. accessed April 29. ALEXANDER HAMILTON. Harold C. THE REPORTS OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON. 1985. 1982. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 1959. de Carolis. Syrett.html. Jacob E. THE PAPERS OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON. New York: The Free Press. 1994 http://www. New York.
accessed May 2. would revive this dispute. This cause would exist among us in full force. and their constitution prevents the differences that neighborhood occasions. 2. November 14. 2002. For the Independent Journal. BECAUSE THE WORLD ISN¶T PERFECT. 1787.html. For the Independent Journal. p. We have a vast tract of unsettled territory within the boundaries of the United States. FEDERALIST PAPER # 6. November 15. November 14. accessed May 2. or only united in partial confederacies.com/federalist7. It has been the prudent policy of Congress to appease this controversy. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. vindictive. http://federalistpapers. STRONG NATIONAL GOVERNMENTS ARE NEEDED BECAUSE HUMANS ARE VINDICTIVE Alexander Hamilton. that it has from long observation of the progress of society become a sort of axiom in politics. and the dissolution of the Union would lay a foundation for similar claims between them all. was at all events an acquisition to the Confederacy by compact with a foreign power. From this summary of what has taken place in other countries. 2002. A dismemberment of the Confederacy.html. weaknesses and evils incident to society in every shape? 3. what reason can we have to confide in those reveries which would seduce us into an expectation of peace and cordiality between the members of the present confederacy. that vicinity or nearness of situation. np. and which usually went under the name of crown lands. by prevailing upon the States to make cessions to the United States for the benefit of the whole.com/federalist6. np. whose situations have borne the nearest resemblance to our own. constitutes nations natural enemies. To look for a continuation of harmony between a number of independent. the subdivisions into which they might be thrown would have frequent and violent contests with each other. Territorial disputes have at all times been found one of the most fertile sources of hostility among nations." 4. 1787. till it was relinquished in the treaty of peace. November 14. WE NEED A STRONG CENTRAL GOVERNMENT Alexander Hamilton. This has been so far accomplished as. p. accessed May 2. Perhaps the greatest proportion of wars that have desolated the earth have sprung from this origin. It is well known that they have heretofore had serious and animated discussion concerning the rights to the lands which were ungranted at the time of the Revolution. if these States should either be wholly disunited. http://federalistpapers. FEDERALIST PAPER # 6. was subjected to the jurisdiction of the king of Great Britain. p.html. So far is the general sense of mankind from corresponding with the tenets of those who endeavor to lull asleep our apprehensions of discord and hostility between the States. or through the submission of the Indian proprietors. especially as to all that part of the Western territory which. would be to forget that men are ambitious. under a continuation of the Union. however. Volume 9 Page 20 FEDERAL CONSTITUTION AND STRONG CENTRAL GOVERNMENTS ARE NEEDED 1. An intelligent writer expresses himself on this subject to this effect: "NEIGHBORING NATIONS (says he) are naturally enemies of each other unless their common weakness forces them to league in a CONFEDERATE REPUBLIC. A man must be far gone in Utopian speculations who can seriously doubt that. the others have contended that the rights of the crown in this article devolved upon the Union.wcdebate. extinguishing that secret jealousy which disposes all states to aggrandize themselves at the expense of their neighbors. 2002. For the Independent Journal. FEDERALIST PAPER # 7. and rapacious. For the Independent Journal. would be to disregard the uniform course of human events. This. and would create others on the same subject. unconnected sovereignties in the same neighborhood. FEDERALIST PAPER # 6. To presume a want of motives for such contests as an argument against their existence. it has been said. TERRITORIAL DISPUTES CAUSE STRIFE: STRONG NATIONAL GOVERNMENT IS NEEDED Alexander Hamilton. 2002.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.html. http://federalistpapers. The States within the limits of whose colonial governments they were comprised have claimed them as their property.com/federalist6. in the event of disunion. http://federalistpapers.com/federalist6. There still are discordant and undecided claims between several of them. and to set at defiance the accumulated experience of ages. np. 1787. UNION IS THE ANTIDOTE TO HOSTILITY BETWEEN NATIONS Alexander Hamilton.com . in a state of separation? Have we not already seen enough of the fallacy and extravagance of those idle theories which have amused us with promises of an exemption from the imperfections. either by actual possession. accessed May 2. 1787. to afford a decided prospect of an amicable termination of the dispute.
Hamilton envisioned a strong economy in which everyone could participate and profit. University of Dallas. They believed that everyone had an equal right to exercise his individual abilities to acquire property.html. As Lincoln repeatedly emphasized.htm. Hamilton's vision was dynamic and made use of all the possibilities of a young nation with unlimited resources and boundless potential. Department of Politics.com . http://odur. as it were. would benefit the nation as a whole in the long run.. http://www. accessed May 1. http://odur. They defined with tolerable distinctiveness. the prosperity of the institution . and that the equal right to employ unequal talents would necessarily lead to economic inequality.intellect. thus creating more jobs and income sources for a burgeoning population.did not mean to say all were equal in. The bank proposed by Hamilton would be a national institution run by a private board of directors. HAMILTON BELIEVED IN EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY. and which would incite fierce protest on the part of those who feared that Hamilton aimed to create an aristocracy.¶ This they said and this meant.2002. Private ownership. Landed wealth. University of Groningen. not only did the Founders¶ understanding of equality not include all kinds of equality (such as the equality of economic condition championed by the Progressives). The "authors of that notable instrument. steady. accessed May 1. as usual.rug. University of Groningen. Department of Alfa-informatica. as proprietors. their conception of human equality necessarily excluded equality of condition. and opened up wider vistas in international trade and domestic industrialization. Hamilton reasoned. and that it would unavoidably result from that very liberty itself. HAMILTON¶S SUPPORT OF THE WEALTHY DIDN¶T INTEND TO CREATE ARISTOCRACY Lisa Marie de Carolis.org/tii/students/GarveyEssay97Upham. opposed to the principle of equality. . "The Primacy of Property Rights and the American Founding.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2002. Industry would diversify labor.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. whereas paper wealth was fluid. 1997.let." Independent Institute Website. The accumulation of wealth was not Hamilton's goal. and the pursuit of happiness. 1997. np. pointing invariably to its true pole.let.. liberty. NOT FORCED EQUITY David Upham. He explained: "The keen. in their understanding. moral developments.htm. simply drawing on realities that he felt. would prevent the corruption which might result if the bank were run by government officials as was the Bank of England. and. 3. This was Hamilton's most controversial position about which he was quite frank. regulate banking practices around the country. Department of Alfa-informatica. Volume 9 Page 21 HAMILTON¶S ECONOMIC IDEAS WERE GOOD 1." Moreover. the equality proclaimed in the Declaration is not an equality in all respects. although not necessarily equitable." 2. . 1997. HAMILTON¶S NATIONAL BANK WAS AN ENGINE OF PROSPERITY Lisa Marie de Carolis.2002. among which are life. p." Hamilton explained that a national bank would provide a safe depository for government funds. As Alexander Hamilton stated in the constitutional convention: "It is certainly true that nothing like an equality of property existed: that an inequality would exist as long as liberty existed. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. was limiting and limited. abilities which were by nature unequal. in what respects they did considered all men created equal²equal in µcertain unalienable rights. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton. he wanted to encourage the use of private wealth for beneficial enterprises. and loan the government money in times of emergency. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton. of their own interest..independent. provide capital for investments and industry. accessed May 1. magnetic sense. Securing the support of the wealthy was only a first step in his complete economic picture. in the Directors of a Bank. Hamilton was. represented by the Virginia opposition. provide a uniform currency.rug. The Founders¶ attachment to economic freedom was in no way..wcdebate. Hamilton saw it as no less than an engine of national prosperity and a necessary ancillary to his overall plan. or social capacity.
every man had found it in the turbulence and follies of democracy. In the mind of Mr. the evils they had experienced flowed "from the excess of democracy. Volume 9 Page 22 HAMILTON WAS OPPOSED TO DEMOCRACY 1. shows conclusively that the members of that assembly were not seeking to realize any fine notions about democracy and equality. being independence. Randolph.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Z MAGAZINE. np. Z MAGAZINE.wcdebate. Madison." 4. He said there was the idea that your people are a great beast and that the real disease is democracy." or even influential. 3. p. as he believed the Bolsheviks intended." Mr. These ideas have become ever more entrenched in educated circles. HAMILTON BELIEVED DEMOCRACY WAS A GREAT BEAST. January 1995. but it is being caged. p. The basic attitudes coming into this century were expressed very clearly by Woodrow Wilson's Secretary of State. We may recall. Mellon Lecture. 2. historian. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. observed "that the general object was to provide a cure for the evils under which the United States labored. 2002. http://www. They feel.zmag. and that a good Senate seemed most likely to answer the purpose." Mr.org/chomsky/talks/9410education. which destroyed labour and independent thought for a decade. sometimes in chains of dogma and deceit. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. 1994. of course. Indeed. every page of the laconic record of the proceedings of the convention. It therefore became necessary to renew with much greater intensity the constant campaign to tame and cage that "great beast. Gerry. That's Hamilton. Restating the Doctrine without equivocation. October 19. in which privilege is enhanced by state power and the general population lack rights apart from what they can salvage on a (highly flexible) labor market. rolling back the threat posed by the "great beast" that keeps trying "to plunder the rich" (Alexander Hamilton and John Foster Dulles. Loyola University. p. HAMILTON SOUGHT TO PRESERVE THE POWER OF THE RICH Noam Chomsky. COMMON PEOPLE A MENACE Noam Chomsky. that some check therefore was to be sought for against this tendency of our governments. The beast may not yet be tamed.com . preserved to posterity by Mr. that. but now perceive that they can do better.html. as it was called. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology." and he confessed that while he was still republican. sometimes quite literally. The first are the rich and well born and the other the mass of the people who seldom judge or determine right. that they can dismantle the social contract that has been in some measure achieved." as Alexander Hamilton termed the "people" with horror and indignation as he was laying the foundations for state-guided industrial democracy. 13. Eighty years earlier Alexander Hamilton had put it clearly. speaking for a host of others)." in the terminology favored by leading planners -. 1912. Lansing warned of the danger of allowing the "ignorant and incapable mass of humanity" to become "dominant in the earth. perhaps rightly. that fear of democracy and freedom has always been one of the factors motivating the terror and sometimes outright aggression undertaken to eliminate "rotten apples" that might "spoil the barrel" and "viruses" that might "infect others. in advocating a life term for Senators. whatever cast it takes. HAMILTON THOUGHT THE ³WELL BORN´ SHOULD RUN THE COUNTRY Charles Beard. in passing. Robert Lansing. he "had been taught by experience the danger of the levelling spirit. Professor of Linguistics at MIT. HAMILTON FEARED DEMOCRACY AND FREEDOM Noam Chomsky. safeguarded on the one hand against the possibilities of despotism and on the other against the onslaught of majorities. accessed April 29. in offering to the consideration of the convention his plan of government. 13. but were striving with all the resources of political wisdom at their command to set up a system of government that would be stable and efficient. Chicago. 31. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. The architects of policy can move on to establish a utopia of the masters based on the values of greed and power.the main concern. January 1995. urged that "all communities divide themselves into the few and the many. an important victory. That's the hysterical and utterly erroneous reaction that's pretty standard among people who feel that their power is threatened. as Jefferson's fears and Bakunin's predictions were increasingly realised. p. in tracing these evils to their origin. the masters have long sought to contain popular struggles to expand the range of meaningful democracy and human rights. attitudes that led to Wilson's Red Scare. Hamilton.
Hume in particular was cautionary about the British system. Hamilton pointed out. the "invigorating principle" which would infuse the United States with the energy and international respectability he had envisioned. However. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton. with variations more suited to the United States' unique characteristics. the availability of which enables merchants to engage in more extensive trade enterprises. makes "country gentlemen" out of wealthy merchants. Mr. HAMILTON¶S GOVERNMENT IDEAS FOCUSED ON PROTECTING THE RICH Charles Beard. and in his opinion. whereas paper capital fosters a more international mentality. Volume 9 Page 23 HAMILTON WAS AN ECONOMIC ELITIST 1. In the tenth number of The Federalist. . 2.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. Hume emphasized the many evils of a credit-based economy. Madison argued in a philosophic vein in support of the proposition that it was necessary to base the political system on the actual conditions of "natural inequality. and a more diverse economy.No plan could succeed which does not unite the interest and credit of rich individuals with that of the state. p.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. He wrote in 1780: "The only plan that can preserve the currency is one that will make it to the immediate interest of the monied men to cooperate with the government in its support. and renders the stock holders largely idle and useless for everything but playing the market. 1912. the unequal distribution of wealth inevitably led to a clash of interests in which the majority was liable to carry out its policies at the expense of the minority. 1997." Landed wealth. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. Nevertheless. The House of Representatives. Mr. from which the rights of property originated. from the protection of different and unequal faculties of acquiring property the possession of different degrees and kinds of property immediately resulted. hence. from the influence of these on the sentiments and views of the respective proprietors ensued a division of society into different interests and parties. http://odur. he added. having such coexistent passion or interest. which in turn makes commodities cheaper and easier to procure. University of Groningen.. 1997. Hume contended. accessed May 1. HAMILTON IGNORED HUME¶S WARNINGS ABOUT THE SYSTEM HE FAVORED Lisa Marie de Carolis. the protection of these faculties was the first object of government. http://odur. Department of Alfa-informatica. HAMILTON RELIED ON THE WEALTHY ALLYING THEMSELVES WITH STATE POWER Lisa Marie de Carolis.rug. the convention safeguarded the interests of property against attacks by majorities. Hamilton needed big investors. Hume observed. Hamilton based his program primarily on the British model.let. and thus helps spread "arts and industry throughout the whole society. University of Groningen.com . Public credit was to become the pillar of Hamilton's fiscal reform package." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." 3. provide ready capital with the value and function of specie. The support and capital of the nation's wealthiest citizens would provide the foundation and security of his system. 2002. "was so formed as to render it particularly the guardian of the poorer orders of citizens. accessed May 1. 2002.wcdebate. in concluding this splendid piece of logic.htm. p. Department of Alfa-informatica. p.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00.let. Hamilton dismissed Hume's warnings and instead focused on the positive aspects of national credit. the continuing vitality of the British economy was enough to prove the efficacy of their system. he contended." Uniformity of interests throughout the state. but pointed out some advantages to a credit-based economy.rug. 31. it was the great merit of the newly framed Constitution that it secured the rights of the minority against "the superior force of an interested and overbearing majority. must be rendered by their number and local situation unable to concert and carry into effect schemes of oppression"." while the Senate was to preserve the rights of property and the interests of the minority against the demands of the majority. np. creates dangerous disparities in wealth. historian. Hume felt that the evils greatly outweighed the advantages. was impossible on account of the diversity in the faculties of men. Securities. indebts the nation to foreign powers. "the majority. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton.. np.htm. by the system of checks and balances placed in the government. warning that a funded debt necessitates oppressive taxes to pay the interest. In order to stimulate the economy.
many called for some kind of reform. it is important to keep in mind that terminology changes. Although far from universally read at the time ± the pamphlets were mostly published in New York ± a group of 85 documents which came to be known as the Federalist Papers came to be the most famous articulation of Federalist views. These papers. and partially to the fact that history has not glorified their accomplishments as it has the Federalists. supported a more direct democracy. Jay. Moreover.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. given that in today¶s lexicon ³federalism´ refers to the doctrine that the federal government should not encroach upon the proper powers of the states. or a great many other things that are matter of course for the federal government today. the Anti-Federalists are no mere moment in history. First. Although the new Constitution was passed largely the way that the Federalists hoped it would be. as opposed to the republican government that connected to the citizens only via mediating representatives. all connected to the desire to have independence from the tyrannical rule of the British monarchy. and the various potential pros and cons to such a political system. The contingent of people who felt that the proposed Constitution had too strong of a Central government were known as the Anti-Federalists. the Anti-Federalists were not as organized in their publications. Anti-federalists. The Confederation could not collect taxes. Anti-Federalist differ from the Federalist Papers in a few significant ways. Even though the Federalist Papers bore the same pen name. Viewing these and many other aspects of the Articles as deep flaws. There have been a variety of different approaches to that question over the years. the identity of the authors of the Anti-Federalist papers is not always known. there is not an established number to each document or speech that constituted Anti-Federalist contributions to the political debate. written by Alexander Hamilton. with that of the Anti-Federalists being one of the most extreme. They felt that the essence of democracy could only be carried out on a small scale. but it is not always conclusive which actual person lies behind what name. Therefore the issue of liberty was foremost in the minds of Americans when considering how to craft a government of their own.com . therefore. notably the Shays Rebellion that occurred in Massachusetts for half a year before it could be quelled. The American Revolution came about for a myriad of reasons. The inability of the federal government to take care of a lot of problems. James Madison.wcdebate. or Madison) is well documented. Contemporary readers might feel as if these terms are backwards. HISTORICAL CONTEXT The driving issues in early American political theory arose as a response to the treatment of the original colonies by Great Britain.´ advocated a much stronger central government than what the Articles provided. seemed to the Federalists a clear signal that a new Constitution was needed. This federalist camp by and large supported the proposed Constitution that was being debated at the Conventions. a great deal of writing was done by various political figures that advocated different positions on what direction the country ought to take. but instead have had a profound influence upon the entirety of American politics. and John Jay under the pseudonym ³Publius. amending the Articles required unanimity among the states. The first attempt was guided by the Articles of Confederation. support for it was by no means unanimous. regulate commerce. some of the major figures behind the movement. However. who did which paper (Hamilton. The Anti-Federalists also used pseudonyms borrowed from past figures from Rome (as well as other names). the benefits of which were lost in such a massive government. and back at the time of the signing of the Constitution the Anti-Federalists were those opposed to it on the grounds that it gave too much power to the federal government. During the time of various Constitutional Conventions. which established a very limited central government with strong powers left to the individual states. This is partially due to the less organized nature of the Anti-Federalists. Given their position in history as one of the main political groups at the time of the crafting of the Constitution. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Volume 9 Page 24 THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS Perhaps the greatest question that American political theory has struggled with is to what extent the power of the federal government should be limited. This essay will explore the context surrounding the Anti-Federalists. Secondly.
ideas. Volume 9 Page 25 WHO THEY WERE While the issue of which Anti-Federalist authors were behind the works of pseudonyms such as ³Brutus. To understand Anti-Federalists merely in terms of modern-day states-rights discourse would be in a sense misleading. direct democracy becomes simply unfeasible. Clinton authored some of the Anti-Federalist papers that were published under the name ³Cato. there are a host of different possible options to be argued for. Samuel Bryan. Since potential actions to be taken by Congress are almost never a black and white issue. Clinton despised Madison. and only samples a small part of the population.com . but they would also stress that said governing body has to be concerned with a vastly smaller area than the US currently is. while they share some of the same beliefs. and others. but when it was approved by the requisite nine states at the Convention in his very own state. some of the more important figures in the theory are well known. Today what we have is a republic. Clinton acquiesced. The inclusion of a Bill of Rights into the Constitution is owed in part to Patrick Henry.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. but took the post after his own Presidential ambitions were dashed.´ ³Old Whig. making most of the people¶s wishes going unheeded. it becomes all the more difficult for any group to get the policy they want. not the one in the Funkadelic Parliament. One such person is Patrick Henry. THE CASE FOR THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS So what is it that is positive about the theory of Anti-Federalism? The primary emphasis is upon promoting liberty and freedom. and later would become Vice President for both Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Especially given the US¶s self-proclaimed status as a melting pot of races. the problem of majority tyranny arises. cultures. Direct democracy of that sort is appealing to Anti-Federalists because it makes up for the myriad of shortcomings in the current system of ³representation´. that the government has. No. while he never supported the Constitution. While of course they all had minor differences. This is democracy at its most tenuous.´ Clinton did his best to block ratification of the Constitution. For one.´ or ³Federal Farmer´ may be an ongoing debate. This ensures that oftentimes the majority opinion does not even constitute over half of the population. Richard Henry Lee. one of his greatest criticisms of it was the lack of any explicit limitations upon the powers of the federal government. Henry did not support the Constitution that was eventually passed in 1787. where representatives are elected with the supposed task of voicing the opinions of all of the people in Congress. This is because when a regime is in control over a large enough populace. it was promised to be included by Congress shortly thereafter. Even were polling perfectly accurate. it is typically meant to designate the bureaucracy.wcdebate. Another prominent Anti-Federalist was George Clinton. There would be no way for common individuals to stroll onto the floor of Capitol Hill any time they wished and have a real voice in crafting national legislation. Anti-Federalism is an entirely different view of what government means than is considered in contemporary political discourse. But what liberties are being shoved aside in the current system? The premise behind AntiFederalism goes deeper than knee-jerk mistrust of the federal government. Henry associated the Federalist supporters with the kind of aristocracy that the Revolutionary War was meant to free America from. And it is true that Anti-Federalists would argue for a less massive government. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. George Clinton was the first governor of New York during the ratification of the Constitution. While the Bill of Rights was not included in the initial signing of the Constitution. Ironically he ended up Vice-President to Madison. When the words ³big´ or ³small´ are used to describe governments today. and so on. The closest way to understanding the will of the electorate ± polling ± is remarkably inaccurate. While his famous quotation in which he prefers liberty to life became one of the central rallying cries of the Revolution. one of the authors of the Federalist Papers. which the Bill of Rights provided (to some extent). or amount of control. There are a great many other important Anti-Federalist thinkers: James Winthrop. there is no way for Representatives to actually know the desires of the people they are voting for. Robert Yates. The first major premise in Anti-Federalism is that true government is only possible on a small scale. the thread running through them all was a mistrust of too massive a government.
THE CASE AGAINST THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS As pretty of a picture of an idyllic small town democracy this paints.wcdebate. Only that way can the desire to life a public life. many of the Anti-Federalists papers make explicit reference to Greek and Roman societies ± before they developed strong tyrannical central governments ± as being ideals insofar as democracy is concerned. The current controversy over money spent in campaigns is telling. What is to stop one state from deciding to use aggressive force against another to take. Once all private demands are met.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. which encompasses crafts. No one struggling to earn enough money to survive. Anti-Federalism dovetails nicely with one of the main tenets of Hannah Arendt¶s belief on the nature of politics. Finally. then one can spend their time caring for the polis (city). it would seem difficult to coordinate efforts. and Senators and Representatives were somehow able to represent the wishes of their constituents completely accurately.com . Volume 9 Page 26 Part of the problem stems from the type of people that are going to be the Representatives in a large republic. the highest type of human activity is what Arendt says the Greeks considered true ³action´: politics. First and foremost is a problem with security from threats both internal and external. be achieved. many Anti-Federalists charged that it was elite interests that motivated the structure of the government set up in the Constitution. How can a rich white Senator born into privilege know how difficult it is to be poor? It becomes difficult for any interest aside from the elite¶s to be advanced in government. The difference lies in the fact that our conception of politics is as a means to an end. But even if stringent campaign finance reform measures were to pass. this is often not the case. the arts. While it is certainly possible for a person of a different station to understand the situation of a common person. and without a strong federal ability to tax. Even if every state kept standing militias. on the other hand. Anti-Federalists desired the smaller town-hall type governments were individual could have a say and come to some consensus about issues that affected them and their town. but instead that understanding the rationale behind the Greek priority of action in the public realm sheds light on why AntiFederalists find value in pure democracy. and similar pursuits. Christopher Duncan explains why it is that Anti-Federalists place intrinsic value upon direct democracy. contends that the highest form of human existence lies in the participation in politics. The incapability of internal uprisings and the like to be dealt with a weak central government was arguably shown back as early as Shay¶s Rebellion. an important political theorist from this century. the type of person who is elected into office will never be the same type of person that she or he is supposed to represent. The same problems that were apparent at the time of the Articles of the Confederation are still present in a system that devolves a great deal of authority. AntiFederalists. Therefore the most glory came from being an honored statesman in the city-state. the political sphere and one¶s own relationship to it can be safely ignored. This is not to suggest that the Anti-Federalists merely wanted to copy the Greeks. one would have to not be tied to any sort of private concerns that would distract from that goal. The reason for this is because. Provided that a Senator votes the way someone theoretically would want them to. one can readily find fault with such a small-scale system of government. The Anti-Federalists argued that a result of that type of government would be that only the elite would have the capability to run for office. Indeed. such as food and shelter. say. There is the possibility of public appreciation of work. Anti-Federalists would still have a large problem with the massive republic that we live in today. people tend to be only concerned with issues such as representation insofar as they get what they want. This problem has gotten even more out of control given the importance of self-advertisement during campaigns. find that situation lacking. The next highest is work. let alone the middle class who spend a great deal of time working to (for example) put their kids through college. and therefore used slavery to divest themselves of the need to do tasks that they consider menial. But even if all of the things above were not true. there would still be cultural and economic barriers that would make it extremely difficult for anyone but the elite class to realize the goal of playing a role in the public sector. but it is often still private in nature. precisely because they see participation in politics as an end to itself. In other words. some economic resources? Threats from other countries are even more frightening. The lowest is that of labor. interestingly enough. Arendt. To achieve enough public recognition to get elected. and therefore be happy and free. have the time and resources to become a serious politician. The ancient Greeks despised labor. there is no way a national army Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. In fact. Therefore. She draws upon Greek culture in her book THE HUMAN CONDITION to explain the various degrees of human activity. whereby one toils to take care of private necessities.
RESPONSES TO SOME OF THE ATTACKS ON THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS While this list of problems might seem difficult for the Anti-Federalists to overcome. Strict laws governing the states are needed to keep them accountable for their environmental damage. environmental theory has taught that those situations are dangerous given the transitory nature of pollution. None could be performed during the Articles of Confederation. Environmental disputes were not much of a problem back in colonial times when the majority of the United States had yet to even be charted by European settlers. and so forth. Countries don¶t just go around attacking each other for land nowadays. There might not be any way to have stopped that discrimination throughout the country in the system promoted by the Anti-Federalists. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. the Federal Reserve ± all are functions that are distinctly national in character. In addition to security. rights. economic prosperity seems to be a direct result of a strong federal government. In that sense there likelihood of an attack against the US might decrease.wcdebate. Until the Supreme Court decision of Brown versus the Board of Education of Topeka. Volume 9 Page 27 could be built and maintained that would comport to the standards necessary to be competitive. Few would call the powers that the federal government claims right to now ³tyrannical´ by any means. Many authors claim that the federal government has proven to be selflimiting in such a fashion so as to avoid the pitfalls the Anti-Federalists predicted. A thriving economy is a necessary condition for a lot of other things. it is natural that uprisings like the Shay¶s Rebellion would occur during a country¶s birth pangs. These protections against discrimination apply to sexism and other forms of oppression through the Equal Protection amendment. With regard to the security issue. a brand new turn is taken in the relationship between individuals. schools wouldn¶t allow blacks the same educational opportunities. The 50 states retain a massive amount of control over criminal laws. is it not obvious that life and peace are more important? Being free from one¶s own government is hardly a concern when another country is invading.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. it is very possible that their mistrust of a strong central government was not merely reactionary fear stemming from their dealings with Great Britain. countries would no longer have cause to resent the US throwing its superpower weight around world affairs. Power over such things as taxation has certainly not spiraled into overwhelming tyranny. Having a national bank system. By passing amendments that protect rights not merely through limiting the power of the federal government but instead positively restricting certain behavior of the states and local governments. wars tend to start due to tensions over disagreements. This case was but the most visible of a massive effort by the federal government to outlaw a host of racist policies held by many States. Nor is there a complete disregard for the rights and powers of the states even within this system. This picture of rights flips on its head the problem envisioned by the Anti-Federalists of a tyrannical national government. but it is a huge issue now. While the Anti-Federalists sought to organize small like-minded communities. As for internal problems. and the government. A strong central government seems to be a prerequisite of peace and order. there are a variety of important tasks that can only be performed by the national government that seem integral to maintaining a healthy economy. The negative effects of industry in one county or state could most directly affect another area completely. One of the revolutions in the past hundred years has been the increasing role of the federal government as the protector of individual rights from state discrimination. issuing bonds. with those citizens lacking any method of recourse. While the fundamental motivation for the Anti-Federalists was the protection of liberty through democracy. Given how complex the economic system is today. Many authors specifically respond to some of these criticisms and explain why they might not seem as problematic as they seem.com . such as funding of the sciences and arts. hope is not lost yet. Even if there is some sacrifice of liberties in order to make those things possible. but there is less reason to believe such events would be a matter of course without a powerful federal government. one might question the incentive for other countries to attack the United States if it were more decentralized. internal commerce. The most famous example of this comes with the controversy concerning segregation in the South. Would the technological and cultural progress that has been made in the past two hundred years be possible in a country with decentralized governments? Yet another goal that has become of more importance in recent years that seems impractical without a strong central government is the protection of the environment.
The most skillful use of it will be to argue for a particular type of democracy that actually involves people. The American political tradition has always been a product of the dialectic of both of those movements. such as greater states rights in a particular area. but economic might is not necessarily the highest aim for a country. can be much more fundamental to human happiness than amassing material wealth. One thing that is important to keep in mind for the purpose of utilizing this theory in a debate round is that one does not necessarily have to advocate every thing that the Anti-Federalists would. it is logical that even without things like strong Supreme Court decisions it is still plausible that those problems would be voluntary dealt with by the states. instead of merely a republic where no one¶s interests but the very powerful are furthered. local. as Hannah Arendt suspects. but those are nothing more than glorified necessities taken too far. has many potential benefits and downfalls. Truly understanding the various twists and turns of American politics requires a grasp upon its roots in both the Federalist as well as Anti-Federalist traditions.wcdebate. Just because power would be devolved to a large degree does not mean that national laws would not work pending the acceptance of the majority of states. Even if the federal government has not proven to turn into a tyranny. the Constitution may have been promoted mainly by Federalists. there is little denying that politics in this country has become an affair of the rich and elite. Money alone cannot produce happiness. no political system is wholly comprised of one ideology or another. Volume 9 Page 28 Issues such as the environment and minority rights could be dealt with in a collective fashion. federal governments. and it can even create tensions in a society where the wealth is increasingly becoming concentrated in a small percentage of the population. Both theories have strong advantages and disadvantages that can be used to shed light on a variety of political issues in our own day and age. Perhaps the widespread depression exhibited in American society today is a result of the alienation felt towards one¶s fellow humans.com . as a political theory taken in general. CONCLUSION Anti-Federalism. The Federalist model did establish an effective system for pursuing one¶s private wishes. Instead. It can be used in its specific historical context to criticize or justify the Constitution. It is certain that the country would be less economically prosperous if it had developed more along AntiFederalist lines. it is natural to question just how successful the country is economically. As the lower class gets larger and poorer. its principles of maintaining a genuine democracy can be utilized to argue in favor of smaller changes. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. as well as a few other modifications to it are distinctly Anti-Federalist in nature. Participation in a public democracy. Given the swing in opinion towards protecting the environment and ending discrimination. Moreover. True happiness is found in one¶s civic existence. or to help argue for or against other political objectives that would affect the balance of power between the people and their state. excluding most people from participating in it in any meaningful way. no matter what the Gross Domestic Product statistics say.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and therefore in direct democracy. but its inclusion of a Bill of Rights.
FROM MANY. DIRECTIONS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. Ketcham. University of Chicago Press. Storing. WE THE PEOPLE: FOUNDATIONS. Murray. Ralph. Georgetown Press. Berns.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Penguin. Hannah.wcdebate. THE DEBATE ON THE CONSTITUTION: FEDERALIST AND ANTIFEDERALIST SPEECHES. Bernard. Bruce. 1997. Walter. 1958. Duncan. Northern Illinois University Press. Bailyn. Dolbeare. 1995. WHAT THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS WERE FOR. THE HUMAN CONDITION. Herbert. 1992. 1981. John Wiley & Sons. ARTICLES. Sinopoli. University of Chicago Press. Dry. Gordon. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 1992. THE ANTI-FEDERALIST PAPERS AND THE CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION DEBATES. 1969. Richard. 1987. Hoffer. THE RADICALISM OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION. Herbert. THE COMPLETE ANTI-FEDERALIST. inc. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT. AND LETTERS DURING THE STRUGGLE OVER RATIFICATION. A POLITICS OF TENSION: THE ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION AND AMERICAN POLITICAL IDEAS.com . 1993. Simon & Schuster. and Storing. University of Chicago Press. Kenneth. TAKING THE CONSTITUTION SERIOUSLY. 1986. Library of America. Volume 9 Page 29 BIBLIOGRAPHY Ackerman. Harvard University Press. THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS AND EARLY AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. Robert. Christopher. 1981. University of Colorado Press. Wood. Alfred Knopf. 1992. Arendt.
wcdebate. the manners. it was an opportunity to transform themselves and expand their circle of concerns while encouraging others to do the same. that their governments were changed from that of free governments to those of the most tyrannical that ever existed in the world. This is the theoretical thread that ties Anti²Federalist thought together. very diverse. It is the notion that the Constitution as a centralizing. The United States includes a variety of climates. Anti-Federalist Writer. cowardly. and more within the reach of every citizen. 3.com . In a large republic. and demand of them that they mind their own private business. be the climate what it may be. and of course are less protected. In a republic. we shall be convinced that it forbids that we should be one government. abuses are of less extent. Anti-Federalist Writer. and without virtue there can be no happiness. so also was that of the Romans. 170-171.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and in some opposite. of consequence. by oppressing his fellow citizens. but would be composed of such heterogenous and discordant principles. and. ³banish the citizens from the public realm into the privacy of their households. FROM MANY. 1997. great and glorious. and the representatives of one part will be continually striving against those of the other. the public good is sacrificed to a thousand views. and their interests. there can be no virtue. are in general lazy. In a large republic there are men of large fortunes. and consequently of less moderation. there are trusts too great to be placed in any single subject. each would be in favor of its own interests and customs. and that he may raise himself to grandeur on the ruins of his country. The productions of the different parts of the union are very variant. that it will ultimately. 2. it is subordinate to exceptions. the interest of the public is easier perceived. If we apply this remark to the condition of the United States. IT IS EMPIRICALLY SHOWN THAT ONLY SMALL GOVERNMENTS AVOID CORRUPTION Brutus. and vicious to an extreme´ are but his way of saying that without the sense of attachment and empowerment that comes with public participation. Both of these. and depends on accidents. he has interest of his own. If this be not the case. extended their conquests over large territories of country.´ History furnishes no example of a free republic. formed of representatives from the respective parts. p. it is true. GOVERNMENTS THAT RULE OVER SIMILAR PEOPLE OPERATE MORE EFFICIENTLY Brutus. The Grecian republics were of small extent. ultimately disempowering. a legislature. THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS AND EARLY AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. 1995. better understood. any thing like the extent of the United States. and interests of the people should be similar. Political participation for the Anti-Federalists became an end to be pursued as well as a means. turbulent. the people. This will retard the operations of government. 37. and their sentiments are by no means coincident. in process of time. sentiments. of consequence. FROM MANY.´ This would certainly be a torturous existence for a people who believed their individual chance for redemption was tied intimately to their shared public life. there will be a constant clashing of opinions. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT. document will leave them bereft of their power to save themselves. he soon begins to think that he may be happy. diverse. would not be too numerous to act with any care or decision. Agrippa¶s claims that ³freedom is necessary for industry´ and that ³in absolute governments. as would constantly be contending with each other. in the words of Hannah Arendt. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. In a small one. in many respects. and prevent such conclusions as will promote the public good. p. The laws and customs of the several states are. Professor of Political Science. Their manners and habits differ as much as their climates and productions. p. Volume 9 Page 30 THE ANTI-FEDERALIST VISION OF SMALLER GOVERNMENT IS SUPERIOR 1. SMALLER SCALE POLITICS ALLOW FOR HAPPINESS VIA A GENUINE PUBLIC SPHERE Christopher Duncan. 38. and the consequence was. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT. The question the Anti-Federalists worried about was not how we organize our polity for order and greatness but how we organize our polity for public happiness and political salvation. 1997. Self-government for the Anti-Federalists was not just a mechanistic device to ensure the safety of their fortunes.
Spring. or the opinion. and aggrandizement. p. 78." ONLY ANTI-FEDERALIST POLITICS ALLOW TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE MULTIPLICITY OF INTERESTS Christopher Duncan. Professor of Political Science. depends in a great measure on their limits. From this picture.wcdebate. 37-8. It is this stubborn persistence of racially polarized voting that confirms the enduring wisdom of and necessity for the Anti-Federalist view that representatives should be "made of the same stuff collectively as their constituents. useful or not. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT. p. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. were open to a good deal of ³relative´ interpretation). and any attempt to conflate the judgments of those independent entities had to be agreed to by them and the like associations involved in order to be legitimate. ONLY SMALLER LIMITED GOVERNMENTS ALLOW LIBERTY Cato. to whose contumely you will continually be an object²you must risque much. This moderation in governments." Thus. shared racial experience and the legacy of white hostility and bigotry constitute the compelling reason for majority-black districts as a necessary means to effectuate the Anti-Federalist insight that in order to guarantee liberty "like best represents like. Political liberty. In other words. Using an innovative mixture of campaign news stories and public opinion surveys of voters. or the opinion. Mr. Thus the mode of operation was consensual rather than majoritarian or adversarial. rather. ANTI-FEDERALISM STOPS RACIAL DISCRIMINATION James Etienne Viator. the phenomenon of white bloc voting makes race-conscious districting a properly narrow means to further the "compelling interest" in full freedom for black Americans -. where the mildness of the laws. 2000. The distinction here is once again of critical importance from a theoretical perspective. Volume 9 Page 31 ANTI-FEDERALISM GIVES RIGHTS AND PREVENTS DISCRIMINATION 1. on the score of consolidation of the United States. connected with their political distribution. If that latter clause is read correctly. from the vast extent of your territory. which accounts for the nine-vote decisionmaking threshold and the provisions for unanimity with regard to amendment that marked the Articles. too. is a government derived from neither nature. Furthermore. they have agreed to protect each other from external dangers to their collective²not individual²liberties. Locke remarks.the compelling interest of solving racial problems through representation in Congress by those who share a commitment to this unique interest in political liberty on account of their membership in the historically "raced" community. it should be clear that there was no such thing as the general welfare of the country. which produces this security. and observe. what can you promise yourselves. or at least in the opinion we have of security. and this racially biased voting excludes blacks from the fair and equal representation recommended both by the Anti-Federalists and Section 2 of the VRA. consists in security. there was a series of particular ³welfares´ that could only be considered general when in fact the question at issue was one of mutual concern as determined by the state itself. and by which you are to be conducted into a monarchy. Loyola University New Orleans School of Law. nor compact. beget a confidence in the people. into one government²impracticability in the just exercise of it²your freedom insecure²even this form of government limited in its continuance²the employments of your country disposed of to the opulent. 1997. 42. 2. and the complication of interests. 1995. Anti-Federalist Writer. whose ambition for power. into the hands of individuals. that transcended the local community and its own particular determinations about right and wrong. the science of government will become intricate and perplexed. the latter. and to work together. and too mysterious for you to understand. Communal welfare and justice were both the products of local political conversations. p. LOYOLA JOURNAL OF PUBLIC INTEREST LAW. which results in the continuing existence of white bloc voting. not on questions of the general welfare but on questions of mutual and general welfare. the great Montesquieu again observes. and this security therefore. FROM MANY. and the equality of the manners.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. other than those basic natural laws (but these. is best obtained in moderate governments. in that under the Articles of Confederation there was no ³truth or Platonic form. Associate Professor of Law. THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS AND EARLY AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. will oppress and grind you²where. Keith Reeves demonstrated the continued presence of bigoted attitudes among white voters.com . either limited or despotic. by indispensably placing trusts of the greatest magnitude.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 32
AN ANTI-FEDERALIST GOVERNMENT WOULD BE UNSAFE AND INEFFECTIVE 1. AN ANTI-FEDERALIST SYSTEM WOULD BE VULNERABLE TO FOREIGN ATTACK Robert Webking, Assistant Professor of Political Science, ³The Federalist: Government Power and Individual Rights,´ THE CONSTITUTIONAL POLITY, 1983, p. 9. The first of the advantages is the increased safety from foreign attack that comes with Union. ³Among the many objects to which a wise and free people find it necessary to direct their attention that of providing for their safety seems to be the first.´ Other nations must be prevented from having just causes for warring with the Americans and they must also be discouraged from attacking injustly on the pretext of trumped up charges. With the Union the Americans will be less likely to present just causes for war to foreign nations because there will be a single interpretation of the law of nations and of treaties. That single interpretation will not be dominated by the unjust desires of any part of the Union. Moreover, should the national government provide a just cause for war to a foreign nation it is far more likely that the dispute will be settled without recourse to war with one large nation than it would be with several smaller confederacies. Publius notes the reality that ³acknowledgements, explanations, and compensations are often accepted as satisfactory from a strong united nation´ when they would not be accepted from a weaker power. 2. THE ORDER THAT COMES FROM A FEDERALIST GOVERNMENT OUTWEIGHS LIBERTY Thomas E. Baker, Director of the Constitutional Resource Center, BYU JOURNAL OF PUBLIC LAW, 1999, p. 76. In any civilized society the most important task is achieving a proper balance between freedom and order. In wartime, reason and history both suggest that this balance shifts to some degree in favor of order - in favor of the government's ability to deal with conditions that threaten the national well-being. It simply cannot be said, therefore, that in every conflict between individual liberty and governmental authority the former should prevail. And if we feel free to criticize court decisions that curtail civil liberty, we must also feel free to look critically at decisions favorable to civil liberty. To conclude his historical exegesis, the Chief Justice brings us back one last time to Lincoln's dilemma to ask and answer rhetorically, "Should he, to paraphrase his own words, have risked losing the Union that gave life to the Constitution because that charter denied him the necessary authority to preserve the Union? Cast in these terms, it is difficult to quarrel with his decision." 3. ADVANCES IN CULTURE AND TECHNOLOGY MAKE ANTI-FEDERALISM IMPRACTICAL Larry D. Kramer , Professor of Law, New York University Law School, COLUMBIA LAW REVIEW, January, 2000, p. 291-292. The specific limits of federal power envisaged by the Founders in 1789 are gone, and any effort to roll back federal power to what it meant at the Founding would be foolish as well as utterly impractical. Even the harshest critics of New Deal jurisprudence acknowledge that changes in society, culture, and the economy require a different kind of national authority today, both practically and as an interpretive matter. Hence, notwithstanding any purported claims of fidelity to original intent, the limits on Congress proposed by today's advocates of judicially-enforced federalism in fact look nothing like any limits that existed when the Constitution was adopted. The question thus becomes, which process should determine the appropriate revised allocation of authority between the federal government and the states: constitutional politics or judicial edict? Mesmerized by the mantra "our Federal government is one of limited powers," the Justices assume that it necessarily falls on them to define new limits - some limits, any limits, even if those limits bear no resemblance to anything imagined by the Founders or observed in the past. But imposing novel judiciallydefined limits just for the sake of having judicially-defined limits is an ill-conceived formalism. In a world of global markets and cultural, economic, and political interdependency, the proper reach of federal power is necessarily fluid, and it may well be that it is best defined through politics. Certainly, as we have seen, this is more consistent with the original design than the Court's new made-up limits-for-the-sake-of-limits. Embracing the hurly-burly of politics while paying attention to how states protect themselves in that domain is a much "truer" interpretation of our Constitution.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 33
FEDERALIST THEORY PROTECTS INDIVIDUAL AND MINORITY RIGHTS 1. STRONG CENTRAL GOVERNMENT IS SELF-RESTRAINING Larry D. Kramer , Professor of Law, New York University Law School, COLUMBIA LAW REVIEW, January, 2000, p. 252-3. North Carolina lawyer-planter Archibald Maclaine, writing as Publicola, made the charge of Anti-Federalist duplicity even more explicitly: I find some people are so strangely infatuated, as to think that Congress can, and therefore will, usurp powers not given them by the states, and do any thing, however oppressive and tyrannical. I know no good grounds for such a supposition, but this, that the legislative and judicial powers of the state have too often stepped over the bounds prescribed for them by the constitution; and yet, strange to tell, few of those, whose arguments I am now considering, think such measures censurable - The conclusion to be drawn here is obvious - The objectors hope to enjoy the same latitude of doing evil with impunity, and they are fearful of being restricted, if an efficient government takes place. 2. A FEDERALIST GOVERNMENT ENSURES PROSPERITY AND INCLUSION OF MINORITIES Robert Webking, Assistant Professor of Political Science, ³The Federalist: Government Power and Individual Rights,´ THE CONSTITUTIONAL POLITY, 1983, p. 7-8. Publius¶ original argument about how a people can secure the advantage and avoid the disadvantage of majority rule rests upon a distinction between species of popular government. In a pure democracy, where people gather to rule themselves directly, he writes, the danger of majority faction is unavoidable. Such a form of government can exist with only a small territory, and in a small community it is virtually certain that there will be a majority with the same partial interest. In a republic, however, the problem can be avoided. The difference between a pure democracy and a republic is that in the latter the people do not rule directly, but through representatives. Representation yields a number of happy advantages for Publius, but the decisive one is size. A republic can be very much larger than a pure democracy, and because it is larger it can include a great variety of people with many different kinds of economic activities and, hence, a multiplicity of interests. The existence of many distinct interests means the existence of many interest groups or factions. The existence of many factions rather than merely two makes it likely that there will be no majority faction. All factions will be minority factions and each faction will be prevented from using the government unjustly by the fact of majority rule. ³Extend the sphere,´ Publius writes, ³and you take in a greater variety of parties and interests; you make it less probable that a majority of the whole will have a common motive to invade the rights of other citizens.´ 3. A FEDERALIST THEORY OF LEGAL RIGHTS STOPS DISCRIMINATION Daan Braveman, Dean and Professor of Law, Syracuse University College of Law, THE AMERICAN UNIVERSITY, February, 2002, p. 619. Perhaps the most significant breakthrough in the transformation process occurred in Brown v. Board of Education. In striking down state segregation, the Supreme Court dramatically altered the relations between the states and the national government, and made the federal courts the primary guardians of federal rights. In the years following Brown, the lower federal courts became the litigation forum for state school segregation cases, as well as actions challenging a wide range of other state activities, including zoning, reapportionment, police misconduct, and prison conditions. Notably, Brown was not decided in isolation but rather at a time when the world outside the courtroom was changing dramatically. The other branches of the federal government had a national and international agenda, which included the expansion of federal rights and a federal interest in protecting those rights from state deprivation. "A new spirit of nationalism" replaced the isolationism of the turn of the century and, as Judge Gibbons stated: "In the global village, deference to local solutions for problems that transcend local interests is a quaint anachronism." By the 1960s, the structure envisioned during Reconstruction was firmly established. Individuals had federal rights, federal remedies, and a federal forum to challenge state conduct that violated federal law.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 34
RALPH WALDO EMERSON
"It is one soul that animates all men." -Ralph Waldo Emerson INTRODUCTION Ralph Waldo Emerson surely epitomizes the uniqueness of 19th century American philosophy. Emerging at a time when American thought was struggling to forge its own identity, reflective of both the optimism and the cynicism of the American political experience, Emerson¶s transcendentalism is a spiritual and philosophical reflection of his time. But it is also an inspiring statement of the universality of human experience. By painting humans with broad brushstrokes as half-animal and half-divine, and by attempting to chronicle humanity¶s relation to the ³absolute,´ Emerson is the American Hegel. Emerson¶s work included poetry and personal essays as well as philosophy, and there is a heavy religious element in all of his writing. Nevertheless, his work contains important implications for political philosophy. In this essay I will attempt to explain his philosophy as a whole, but I will also pay special attention to the political implications of Emerson¶s work, along with the way in which these political elements can be used in value debate. EMERSON¶S LIFE AND TIMES Ralph Waldo Emerson was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1803, into a family whose male members were typically clergymen. He studied divinity at Harvard. Well-educated and taught to embrace open-mindedness as well as religion, Emerson was ordained a Unitarian minister in 1929. He was a good speaker, delivered a good sermon or two, but something was missing. ³He would begin his sermons with words from the Bible, but would gradually find himself discussing the unfathomable ideals found in nature,´ or abstract philosophy. He had problems trying to find ³his way back into the Bible to close the speeches.´ Although some of his parishioners liked his style, others did not. ³Stumbling for appropriate words at the bedside of a dying veteran of the American Revolution,´ the dying man reportedly told Emerson: ³Young man, if you don¶t know your business, you had better go home´ (www.litkicks.com). Although he had entered into the ministry with high hopes (and Unitarianism has always been a liberal and progressive religion, even back then), Emerson resigned from ministry and journeyed to England in 1832 following the death of his first wife, Ellen Tucker. She had died of tuberculosis after they had been married only eighteen months. This broke Emerson¶s heart and caused a deep spiritual crisis. His time in England was spent cultivating friendships and intellectual associations with people like William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, John Stuart Mill, and Thomas Carlyle. Needless to say, by the time he returned to America, Emerson had a newfound optimism, as well as a greater understanding of philosophy. He returned to America in 1834, but tragedy would strike at his optimism once again. That same year, Ralph Waldo¶s brother Edward died. To make matters worse, his brother Charles died in 1836. Emerson would be a haunted man the rest of his days. His writings and lectures contained dark clouds even in his most arduous attempts to celebrate the glory of humanity. By the time Charles had died, Emerson had remarried (his second wife was named Lydia Jackson), settled in Concord, and begun to publish essays about the human spirit, freedom and independence, and the undesirability of following tradition. Among these early essays was one of his greatest, ³Self-Reliance,´ a polemic about the necessity of complete individual freedom (http://www.pbs.org/wnet/ihas/poet/emerson.html, www.litkicks.com). Emerson co-founded a journal, and collected a group of fellow writers (both male and female; like his friend John Stuart Mill, Emerson believed in women¶s emancipation), and started a tradition known as the New England Transcendentalists. Expanding outside that small circle of colleagues, Emerson discovered one of the most influential thinkers of the 19th century, when he met and wrote a letter of recommendation for Henry David Thoreau. Two decades later, Emerson would again contribute to the intellectual history of America by promoting the work of poet Walt Whitman. Along the way, he promoted Buddhism and other eastern religions, opposed slavery, fought for women¶s equality, and remained a dedicated, if cynical, proponent of democracy.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
Emerson had a habit of characterizing important figures of his time as somehow transcendent.com . Brown. optimistic about humanity." In this section I will argue that it is possible to trace several complimentary (if sometimes contradictory) ideas in Emerson¶s writings. two brothers." where the things and ideas we contemplate exist in a state of unchanging consistency. Philosophers usually seek some kind of analytic understanding." Things changed. and politics. since ³-isms´ are usually systems. He influenced Henry David Thoreau and.. one of the most influential thinkers in the history of Western civilization. who he saw as intrinsically tied to the transcendent and divine. inspired civil disobedience advocates from Ghandi to Martin Luther King. Plato believed that the realm of "being" was absolute. he lost a spouse.wcdebate. But he remained. however. and lived through the Civil War. theology and poetry brought romanticism to America. Plato. immaterial. unchanging. must be a nonconformist. removed from day-to-day history. at least in principle. To understand transcendentalism.To be great is to be misunderstood. 2000. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. seemed to de-value understanding in favor of heavenly emotions. values. Ordinary humans could contemplate this world of spirit provided they shed their worldly concerns and concentrate only on philosophical ideals. non-linear thinking as an alternative to the dry. But humans could never really reach such a world. in doing so.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. he had his house burn down. Plato envisioned a realm of "perfect forms. he was even more a mystic than Plato. one must first and foremost understand its derivation from Platonism. and have great potential for debates over morality. However.. This mystical trust in human transcendence led many of Emerson¶s contemporaries to view him less as a philosopher than a divine seer of sorts. and Emerson was as anti-systemic as they come. a continent perhaps more ready for it that Europe had ever been. 1882." where matter. people and history existed. In this sense. Today. Volume 9 Page 35 Ralph Waldo Emerson died of pneumonia on April 27. a child. in contrast. Even to call it ³transcendentalism´ seems a stretch. Emerson. academic science of modernist philosophy. and his mystical vision of ³feeling´ or ³mood´ over logic as the basis of human understanding. EMERSON¶S IDEAS "Whosoever would be a man. p.A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds. was a degraded and corrupt reflection of "being. 669). This paradoxical figure would influence a certain strain of American thought well into the 20th century.. I will describe his Platonic conception of spirit as primary and matter as secondary. certain major themes stand out in his writings. LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY. living entities died. they could only contemplate it. and incorruptible. while the realm of "becoming. And his marriage of philosophy. even as they sought to reform the conditions of the time.. His life had never been as peaceful and content as his privileged New England upbringing might have predicted. Spring. He held Daniel Webster in such high esteem for Webster¶s opposition to slavery that he identified Webster as ³representative of the American continent´ (Thomas J. and perfection was unattainable. Emerson was the first major thinker in America to offer up non-Western. it is impossible to systematize or categorize Emerson¶s thinking. his differences from Plato (especially in Emerson¶s faith in humanity and democracy). As George Santayana characterizes him: Similarly. was the first major figure to posit a distinction between spirit and matter.
Emerson viewed emotion as the emanation of the divine. This was reflected in Emerson¶s faith in democracy. Emerson combined this idea of the essential unity of all things and creatures with a belief in the innate goodness of humanity. After all. Like Hegel.wcdebate. or walk abroad in the morning after meditating the matter before sleep on the previous night" (Emerson. the notion of a "unitary soul" uniting all humankind seems more "Eastern" than "Western. Transcendentalism. Emerson and the other transcendentalists turned toward the mystical world of the Romantics.´ and in doing so lose the spontaneous connection to creation and nature that Romantics saw as vital to a higher kind of understanding. the past is always swallowed and forgotten." as he puts it. Plato rejected human matters." including emotions such as love. on the other hand. He was very close. viewpoints.´ 2. based more on feeling than analysis. unlike Plato." he writes that he is "only an experimenter«with no Past at my back" (CW2: 188). This is apparent in Emerson's position against slavery. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Emerson did not believe history or human interaction were irrelevant. Since that connectedness is more real than the analytic separateness of individual thinking. This serves as a useful transition into Emerson¶s belief in the connectedness of all creatures and things. He means to be irresponsible to all that holds him back from his self-development. or doctrines. more than he trusted logic and analytic thought. That is why. Emerson¶s "epistemology of moods" is an attempt to construct a framework for encompassing what might otherwise seem contradictory outlooks. believed it impossible "to extricate oneself from the questions in which your age is involved. It is instructive to note that Emerson differed from Plato in a few important ways: 1. comprehensive understanding. higher understanding. Emerson. This way of thinking has been called Emerson¶s ³epistemology of moods. Emerson believed human beings and human endeavors were innately good.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. as the basis of genuine knowledge. come so close to any question as your spontaneous glance shall bring you. holds that all living creatures and things of the earth are united as something mystically higher and more whole than the sum of their parts. Emerson believed that it was possible to ³think too much. history." But the idea that we are all joined by one common soul has immediate and important political implications that give a strong metaphysical basis to the American political ideal of equality. at the end of "Circles.edu/entries/emerson/).com . it would make sense that a transcendentalist would value the ³spirit´ of emotion more than the analysis of individual thoughts. whilst you rise from your bed. He wrote: "Our spontaneous action is always the best. he did believe that a mystical spirit-reality existed and was the true inspiration for human greatness. Emerson trusted instinct and emotion. as its name implies. Like many of transcendentalism's central themes. a system of government Plato categorically rejected. "Intellect"). to being a pantheist. Emerson put forth a mystical sense of "vision. 3. Although. there is nothing stable to be responsible to: "every moment is new. Volume 9 Page 36 Emerson's transcendentalism was an optimistic version of Plato's distinction between spirit and matter. as corruptible facets of the realm of becoming. "the clangor and jangle of contrary tendencies" (CW3: 36). It was fortunate that Emerson believed history and human interaction were important. and in turn viewed the divine as an aggregate reflection of all creatures and things. because. as we shall see. in this respect. being and becoming. the coming only is sacred" (CW2: 189) (http://plato. politics and the like.´ Like the German and British Romantics. You cannot. transcends the old Aristotelian maxim that things cannot be both true and false. Emerson really means to "accept.stanford. which he saw as our connection to the divine. In the world of flux that he depicts in that essay. In other words. with your best deliberation and heed. Whereas Plato ultimately appealed to reason and a kind of logic to govern philosophical thought. I wish to concentrate on this last point a little more. As mentioned. Emerson believed contradictory premises were simply stepping-stones to a higher.
and the notion of morality transcending states and governments Second. critics sometimes contend that he glosses over many injustices that are on par with slavery. ³self-reliance´ is valuable to Emerson because he sees ³power´ as something that makes us human. In ³The American Scholar´ he argues that institutions and books do not reveal truth as well as can be revealed through our personal relationships with the divine² mediated. This is the most well-known of Emerson¶s philosophies. 2000. Because of this. Those arguing against Emerson can gain a great deal of ground by citing the numerous instances where his thoughts lead to mystical pronouncements instead of solid and warranted conclusions. divine virtue (which Emerson also calls ³beauty´). OBJECTIONS TO EMERSON As already noted. Brown. the necessity of self-reliance." some geniuses manage to serve large groups because they 'stand for facts. In his essay ³Self-Reliance. Emerson¶s philosophy strongly supports civil disobedience and the refusal to follow unjust laws. and the power of individual action. Emerson is part Plato (humans must understand the transcendent world in order to be good) and part Aristotle (humans must actually practice virtuous behavior to be in tune with the divine). and for thoughts. Some critics. such as rapid industrialization or capitalist exploitation. and it inspired Henry David Thoreau¶s entire essay ³Civil Disobedience. 669). LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY. This obsession with power has long been a rallying point against Emerson. First.´ The problem is that Emerson never really comes to terms with how his pronouncements on power (³Life is a search after power. Emerson was a strong supporter of civil disobedience against unjust laws.´ Emerson¶s embrace of civil disobedience comes from two areas of his philosophy: antimajoritarianism. since governments are not the ultimate source of morality.com . George Santayana among them. Obsession with power: As much as Emerson extolled the sins of slavery and patriarchy. but it also reflects Emerson¶s desire to be a truly ³American´ thinker at a time when Americans were confronting and conquering ³the frontier. doubt that it¶s even proper to call Emerson a philosopher.' ´ (Thomas J.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. morality is more important than obeying the law. of course. p.´ he declared) problematized his political stance against oppression.´ Emerson argues that Nature reveals moral truth. Insofar as human beings embrace their connection to transcendent. democracy offered a variation of the process by which other individuals act as "lenses through which we read our own minds.wcdebate. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and dependence on others as a natural indictment of that power. Emerson refused to see distinctions based on skin color or national origin as being more important than the common humanity that unites Black and white. Volume 9 Page 37 For Emerson. he also extolled the virtues of capitalism. critics fault Emerson on two levels: Inconsistency and lack of coherent foundation: Emerson was as much a mystic and poet as he was a philosopher. through Nature. Spring. This is true of every human being. This. Emerson¶s philosophy makes a very optimistic statement about human nature. presumably. however imperfect. Because he held an almost Nietzschian awe of power. Second. they will perform virtuously. or other distinct groups. "the otherest. In this way." Like friendship and reading. democracy. Implications for Debate First." As each person searches for the perfectly fitted lens. There are two more important political implications found in Emerson. This is another instance of the inconsistency cited earlier. explains his opposition to slavery and his position in favor of women¶s emancipation. was a method by which human beings could serve as "lenses through which we read our own minds.
Hegel (who believed all bad states of affairs would transcend into good things). on the other hand. compensate for his imperfect attempt to do justice to the paradoxical nature of human existence. while utilitarian ethics mandates an exclusive focus on consequences. his optimism about humanity and democracy. because it is a reflection of transcendent beauty and goodness. For example. As noted above.F. In this way. Volume 9 Page 38 Although critics accuse Emerson of justifying evil. This may be among Emerson¶s most ³Platonic´ philosophical notions. his stance often seems anti-foundationalist and anti-analytic. Emerson takes virtuous behavior to be among the highest ethical goods. It serves as an intrinsic justification for moral behavior. would probably call for a unity of intentions and consequences.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.com . Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. deontological ethics mandates the disregard of consequences. Emerson¶s eloquence. it may be reasonably replied that Emerson simply believes seemingly miserable situations (such as poverty) will ultimately culminate in human growth and transcendence. meaning that there will be a certain awkwardness involved in using his ideas for the sometimes-binaristic world of debate. exploitative systems (such as ruthless capitalism). Emerson is like John Stuart Mill (who believed capitalism would evolve into a just economic system) or G.W.wcdebate. It may even be an alternative to deontological or utilitarian modes of ethics. Transcendentalist ethics. Third. These ethical codes arguably allow one to escape from various moral responsibilities by assigning greater and lesser values to respective moral commands. Debaters interested in incorporating Emerson into their arguments should be cautioned that he is far from a systematic thinker. However. and his powerful statements against human bondage and majoritarianism. since all phenomena and actions are linked in some way.
J. 1959). Ralph Waldo. NATURAL HISTORY OF INTELLECT. 1981). WEALTH (New York: Scott-Thaw. Len and Myerson. Volume 9 Page 39 BIBLIOGRAPHY Allen. Emerson. 1978). 1995). 1900). Ralph Waldo. and Whicher. Alfred R.: Friends of the Dartmouth Library. 1903).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 1969). GROWTH. ed. A YANKEE IN CANADA. Ralph Waldo.Y. Ralph Waldo. Mifflin.H. Osgood and Company. Gay Wilson. Ralph Waldo. eds. INDIAN SUPERSTITION (Hanover. Huggard. Sealts Jr. Gordon Sherman.: Kennikat Press.wcdebate. 1954). REPRESENTATIVE MAN: RALPH WALDO EMERSON IN HIS TIME (New York: Oxford University Press. YOUNG EMERSON SPEAKS: UNPUBLISHED DISCOURSES ON MANY SUBJECTS (Port Washington. 1947) Emerson. N. 1982). 1966). eds. POWER. 1878).. eds. Emerson.com . 1990) Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. THE CONDUCT OF LIFE: NINE ESSAYS ON FATE. Emerson. ADDRESSES (New York: W. ed. 1978). OR THE MAN OF THE WORLD (Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Black.. Smith. 1866). EMERSON¶S ANTISLAVERY WRITINGS (New Haven: Yale University Press. EMERSON¶S NATURE: ORIGIN. APOSTLE OF CULTURE: EMERSON AS PREACHER AND LECTURER (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. Merton M. RALPH WALDO EMERSON: A BIOGRAPHY (New York: Viking Press. MEANING (New York: Dodd. Arthur Cushman Jr. Konvitz. Ralph Waldo. Stephen E. Emerson. Mead. POEMS. N. THE EARLY LECTURES OF RALPH WALDO EMERSON (Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Ralph Waldo. 1968). Robinson. 1938). Susan Sutton. William Allen. ed. 1941). NAPOLEAN. Emerson. David.. EMERSON ON EDUCATION: SELECTIONS (New York: Teachers College Press. THE TOPICAL NOTEBOOKS OF RALPH WALDO EMERSON (Columbia: University of Missouri Press. WITH ANTI-SLAVERY AND REFORM PAPERS (Boston. Haight. and Ferguson. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS (Westport: Greenwood Press. Emerson. Porte. AND OTHER PAPERS (Boston: Houghton. THE BEST OF RALPH WALDO EMERSON: ESSAYS. Gougeon. Joel. Ticknor and Fields. Milton R. McGiffert. Joel. EMERSON AND THE PROBLEM OF WAR AND PEACE (Iowa City: The University Press. FORTUNE OF THE REPUBLIC (Boston: Hougton..
A virtuous man is in unison with her works. POWER IS DERIVED FROM VIRTUOUS BEHAVIOR 1. 1986. 13. the sun as its candle. WE DERIVE POWER FROM BEING VIRTUOUS AND HONEST Ralph Waldo Emerson. Only let his thoughts be of equal scope. namely. and makes the central figure of the visible sphere. p. 1986. every departure from his own convictions. and bend her lines of grandeur and grace to the decoration of her darling child. BEAUTY IS THE ULTIMATE END OF THE UNIVERSE AND ALL ACTIVITY Ralph Waldo Emerson. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. associate themselves fitly in our memory with the geography and climate of Greece.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.wcdebate. The visible heavens and earth sympathize with Jesus. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. and this knowledge must inevitably determine his respect. 15. American transcendentalist philosopher. that every false word he has uttered. but he is entitled to the world by his constitution. Every heroic act is also decent. is one expression for the universe. This element I call an ultimate end. The world thus exists to the soul to satisfy the desire of beauty. We are taught by great actions that the universe is the property of every individual in it. Homer. the opinions. American transcendentalist philosopher. 1986. The presence of a higher.--the persons. And any one who will steadily observe his own experience will I think become convinced. Phocion. And in common life whosoever has seen a person of powerful character and happy genius will have remarked how easily he took all things along with him. and beauty. One measure of a man¶s character is his effect upon his fellow-men. He may divest himself of it. an act of truth or heroism seems at once to draw to itself the sky as its temple. For every man knows whether he has been accustomed to receive truth or falsehood² valuable opinions or foolish talking²from his brother. as most men do. 15. In private places. Every natural action is graceful. American transcendentalist philosopher. and the day. No reason can be asked or given why the soul seeks beauty. is that which is found in combination with the human will. are but different faces of the same All. in its largest and profoundest sense. Nature stretches out her arms to embrace man. and nature became ancillary to a man. 12. VIRTUOUS ACTS PLACE US IN UNISON WITH THE POWER OF NATURE Ralph Waldo Emerson. and causes the place and the bystanders to shine. out of deference to others has been a sacrifice of a certain amount of his power over other men. EMERSON¶S PROSE AND POETRY. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. p. he may creep into a corner. p. 2. if he will. Truth. The high and divine beauty which can be loved without effeminacy. It is his. Beauty. and the frame will suit the picture. Pindar. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. Every rational creature has all nature for his dowry and estate. 2000. only let his thoughts be of equal greatness. American transcendentalist philosopher. Volume 9 Page 40 BEAUTY IS THE HIGHEST VALUE 1. God is the all-fair. and goodness. 2. and abdicate his kingdom. Beauty is the mark God sets upon virtue. of the spiritual element is essential to its perfection. among sordid objects. Willingly does she follow his steps with the rose and the violet. that it to say. VIRTUOUS ACTS ARE BEAUTIFUL AND EXPRESSES THE RATIONALITY OF THE UNIVERSE Ralph Waldo Emerson.com . Socrates. p.
that an immoral contract is void. These laws execute themselves. justice. 72-73. It is not skill in iron locomotives that marks so fine civility as the jealousy of liberty. in each other¶s actions. 1986. a sure sign of the shallowness of our intellect. p. THE TRUE SOURCE OF MORALITY IS IN THE UNWRITTEN LAWS OF HUMANITY¶S RELATIONSHIP WITH THE UNIVERSE AND EACH OTHER Ralph Waldo Emerson. The sentiment of virtue is a reverence and delight in the presence of certain divine laws. CIVIL LAWS MUST BE A REFLECTION OF TRUE. I cannot think the most judicious tubing a compensation for metaphysical debility. 362. yet we read them hourly in each other¶s faces. 2000. fear. interact. pp. or spoken by the tongue.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. American transcendentalist philosopher. muscular force. it is not to be presumed that they can so stultify themselves as to command injustice. EMERSON¶S PROSE AND POETRY. at every hazard. I cannot accept the railroad and the telegraph in exchange for reason and clarity. 2. The intuition of the moral sentiment is an insight of the perfection of the laws of the soul. in our own remorse. American transcendentalist philosopher. 1986. American transcendentalist philosopher. The sense of injustice is blunted. For virtue is the very self of every man.wcdebate. and not subject to circumstance. man. and that an immoral statute is void. What is the use of admirable law-forms and political forms. love. It perceives that this homely game of life we play. I question the value of our civilization. when a bad act of Congress finds a willing commissioner? 2. for. appetite. and no judge exerts original jurisdiction. when I see that the public mind has never less hold of the strongest of all truths. if all the guarantees provided by the jealousy of ages for the protection of liberty are made of no effect. and God. He who does a good deed is instantly ennobled. p. if judges only quote authorities. TRANSCENDENT MORAL LAWS EXIST IN HUMAN INTUITION Ralph Waldo Emerson. EMERSON¶S PROSE AND POETRY. LAWS WITHOUT TRANSCENDENT JUSTICE ARE USELESS Ralph Waldo Emerson. if its opinions are the political breath of the hour? And what is the use of constitutions. These laws refuse to be adequately stated. TRANSCENDENT JUSTICE 1. p. WE HAVE A DUTY TO BREAK IMMORAL LAWS Ralph Waldo Emerson. if a hurricane of party feeling and a combination of monied interests can beat them to the ground? What is the use of courts. An immoral law makes it a man¶s duty to break it. Thus in the soul of man there is a justice whose retributions are instant and entire. The child amidst his baubles is learning the action of light. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. principles that astonish. They will not be written out on paper. They are out of time. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. but are simply declatory of a right which already existed. as laws do not make right. 361. under what seem foolish details. It is therefore a principle of law. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. 73. American transcendentalist philosopher. out of space. They elude our persevering thought. motion. or recurs to first principles? What is the use of a Federal Bench. 2000. gravity. Volume 9 Page 41 MORALITY IS INNATE AND TRANSCENDENT 1. and in the game of human life. covers.com .
EMERSON GLORIFIED POWER AND ELITISM Daniel Aron. Professor of English at Washington University of Saint Louis.´ as his editors call it²is therefore less an apology for Laissez-faire capitalism than an attempt like Henry Adams¶s sixty years later to plot the lines of force that were remaking contemporary society.´ Here he reiterates his preference for the ³bruisers´ and ³pirates. in its room. ³marry Right to Might. and the successful men who understand the laws of Nature and respond to the godhead within themselves. In these essays and elsewhere.´ the ³men of the right Caesarian pattern´ who transcend the pettiness of ³talkers´ and ³clerks´ and dominate the world by sheer force of character. 1999. he was also outlining a code of behavior that the superior man must follow.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Emerson the seeker of unity is at pains to assimilate the new forces to a cosmic and social teleology²to survey history for the perspective of the ³over-god´ of the Channing ode and.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. who convert ³the sap and juices of the planet to the incarnation and nutriment of their design.´ are unconsciously fulfilling the plan of a benevolent providence. ³Life is a search after power. 3. Volume 9 Page 42 EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY LEGITIMIZES RUTHLESS POWER AND COMPETITION 1. in doing so. EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY LEGITIMIZES UNCHECKED CAPITALIST EXPLOITATION Robert Milder.com . Professor of English at Washington University of Saint Louis. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS. Emerson¶s respect for power and its achievements is even more glowingly expressed in two others essays. Emerson was not only synchronizing the predatory practices of the entrepreneur with the harmony of the universe and permitting merchants (as Bronson Alcott shrewdly said) to ³find a refuge from their own duplicity under his broad shield´. EMERSON SAW CAPITALIST IMPERIALISM AS THE UNFOLDING OF DIVINE WILL Robert Milder. philosopher. and to conspire with the new works of new days. 68. not to block improvement. and sit till we are stone. Emerson was not ³co-opted´ by liberal capitalism so much as he hastened to join it. ³The Young American´ (1844)²Emerson¶s ³battle cry for the new era of industrial expansion and manifest destiny. 90. 68-69.´ Emerson can associate capitalism with ³amelioration in nature. which alone permits and authorizes amelioration in mankind. information (and) science. since aligning himself with the divinely empowered forces of the age was always the condition for a living philosophy.´ 2. The political corollary to this belief is an almost unmitigated laissez-faire: ³Trade is an instrument of that friendly Power which works for us in our own despite«Our part is plainly not to throw ourselves across the track. 1999. 1962. p. which displaces the ³physical strength´ of kings and aristocrats and ³installs´ the enlightened forces of ³computation. The difference is that where Adams the ironist would dwell on multiplicity and a vertiginous acceleration of energies without immanent purpose or foreseeable end.wcdebate. By emphasizing the ³anti-feudal power´ of trade.´ Implicit in his words are the notion that the civic world is part of nature and subject to its processes and that advancement occurs by cooperating with these processes rather than directing them toward immediate human ends. but to watch the uprise of successive mornings.´ he announces. THE CAMBRIDGE COMPANION TO RALPH WALDO EMERSON. THE CAMBRIDGE COMPANION TO RALPH WALDO EMERSON. combination. p. and sketching the ideal political economy under which the superman might best exercise his uncommon talents. ³Power´ and ³Wealth. pp.
Empty. in his 1888 essay. 1962.´ Emerson¶s ³special capacity for moral experience´²which for James meant Emerson¶s ³ripe unconscious of evil. perpetually untested by the ³beguilements and prizes´ of experience. or Beauty? He could not.´ sealed off. and the consciousness of that incapacity was so lively within him that he never attempted to give articulation to his philosophy. For if the understanding is rejected because it cannot grasp the absolute.´ the ³achromatic picture´ his environment presented him. the emptying of his whole heart and mind to make room. 2. could be ³condensed into the single word Concord. Professor of English at Michigan State University.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.´ It was no surprise.´ ³We get the impression. by its very definition. EMERSONIAN MYSTICISM VOIDS ALL REASON AND UNDERSTANDING George Santayana. Benefit. Did he know what he meant by Spirit or the ³Over-Soul´? Could he say what he understood by the terms. EMERSON AND POWER. or even of a definite conception of ultimate truth. is the surrender of a category of thought because we divine its relativity. the imagination and all its works²art. is not representable by any specific faculty. ³Emerson¶s personal history. James writes (and he means Boston to stand for Emerson). and having there beheld the transfigured reality. The deeper he went and the more he tried to grapple with fundamental conceptions. This effect was by no means due to the possession on the part of Emerson of the secret of the universe. the foul. Boston existed serenely. and conscience must follow after: for all these are human and relative. As far as James was concerned. 32. its rewards and consolations. descended again to make authoritative report of it to the world. Common sense and poetry must both go by the board. ³enacted a series of experiments in the void. He was not a prophet who had once for all climbed his Sinai or his Tabor. the poetic and moral categories no less than the physical. Mysticism will be satisfied only with the absolute. p. p. and all the condensation in the world will not make it look rich. worship²must presently be rejected for the same reason. as he thinks. must share this reproach. vacant²the image is invoked repeatedly in Henry James¶s and Santayana¶s portrayals of Emerson.wcdebate. the whole ³Concord school´ had.´ and no surprise that there was ³a certain inadequacy and thinness in (Emerson¶s) enumerations´ and ³quaint animadversions. as Matthiessen notes. p. 31.´ He continued. philosopher.´ his inability ³to look at anything but the soul´²was the result of his coming to maturity in a community that ³had to seek its entertainment. TRANSCENDENTALISM PLACES ITSELF ABOVE ORDINARY HUMAN EXPERIENCE Michael Lopez. 4. Nature. By attacking the authority of the understanding as the organon of knowledge. by substituting itself for it as the herald of a deeper truth. EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY LACKS ANY SPECIFIC CONTENT OR DEFINITION George Santayana. Emerson¶s memory evoked an unforgettable series of ³impressions´ of New England¶s cultural barrenness. Far from it. Emerson¶s limited moral world was. 32-33. the base. p. the vaguer and more elusive they became in his hands. 1962. so constantly on his lips.´ he recalled. 1996. Volume 9 Page 43 EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY IS IRRELEVANT TO EVERYDAY AND POLITICAL LIFE 1. As every new category. to associate Emerson with the ³terrible paucity of alternatives. like the ³New England (of) fifty years ago. almost exclusively in the moral world. with something of the movement of the gills of a landed fish. the imagination thus prepares its own destructing. Professor of English at Michigan State University. as we have said. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. EMERSON AND POWER.´ James concludes. God. it must be approached through the abandonment of all. panting for sensations. dogma. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS. 1996. however. ³like a ministry without an opposition. an island above the extremes of common human experience. 35. philosopher. the mystic is obliged in the end to give them all up.com . for God. Mysticism. ³of a conscience gasping in the void. For James.´ The ³decidedly lean Boston´ of Emerson¶s day was self-enclosed. that his eyes were ³thickly bandaged´ to all ³sense of the dark. so that the end of his purification is the atrophy of his whole nature. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS. At bottom he had no doctrine at all. then. and as the absolute. EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY IGNORES THE EVILS OF THE REAL WORLD Michael Lopez.´ 3. Law.
and Dewey grew up listening to local customers at the store discuss politics and culture. because they have waited upon some power external to themselves and to nature to do the work they are responsible for doing. it may very well have been his youth in Burlington that inspired that trust. He was beginning to realize that what separated these extremes was not so much the "natural talent" of students as the philosophical commitments of the instructors and administrators. from base "vocational" education to higher forms of learning. For Dewey. From a very early age. Dewey possessed an unreasonable utopian trust in communities. By now. Dewey enrolled in the philosophy graduate program at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Not surprisingly. Dewey stayed in Burlington after graduating from the public schools. most students would take advantage of the opportunities afforded them. LIFE AND WORK John Dewey was born in Burlington. Burlington possessed paradoxical traits (and in many ways. Maryland. he received his PhD. Students were herded in and out of classrooms. the son of a grocer. Dewey would come to reject the small town provincialism of Burlington in favor of the changing and growing national community that characterized the second half of the 19th century. Dewey has influenced famous contemporary thinkers such as Richard Rorty and Donald Davidson in the area of philosophy. John Dewey witnessed the kind of community participation that would inspire his views on society. At the same time. and these divisions were often based on students' economic circumstances rather than any useful distinctions. in philosophy. and enrolled at the University of Vermont. In the fall of 1882. and taught high school for three years. and received an appointment from the University of Michigan to teach philosophy and psychology. and the belief that humans can progress and improve themselves over time. If. What makes Dewey uniquely American is his pragmatism. and grow accordingly. Volume 9 Page 44 JOHN DEWEY "Men have never fully used [their] powers to advance the good in life. After examining Dewey¶s interesting life. rather than seeing them as defects to be corrected or workers to be trained. on October 20." ²John Dewey INTRODUCTION This essay will explore the life and thought of John Dewey. from the naive provincialism of small town public schools to the progressive possibilities of advanced study in philosophy. taught to memorize proofs and facts and histories. I will attempt to explain both the philosophy of pragmatism and Dewey¶s educational philosophy. 1859.wcdebate. Dewey's father owned a general store in the small Vermont community. along with some ideas about how Dewey can be used in value debate. He graduated in 1879. as well as countless teachers and educational theorists. politics and education. In 1894. at the age of twenty. He would come to understand that if teachers and administrators believed in students. the young scholar had experienced a wide range of educational models. the ultimate test of a theory or idea was whether it ³worked´ for ordinary people applying the theory or idea. Dewey left public school teaching in favor of exploring the alternatives that might be available. and expected to regurgitate them faithfully. Two years later. These early teaching experiences no doubt forced Dewey to realize that something was not quite right with the education system in America.com . a distinctively American pragmatist philosopher. There seemed to be different "tracks" for different students. Dewey was appointed professor of philosophy and chair of the department of philosophy. Vermont. still does): It was both a local intellectual center and a community of simple farming and trade. the primacy of collective and community activity over individual reflection. saw students as valuable in and of themselves. A brief synopsis of some general objections of Dewey follows. It was at Chicago where Dewey would begin experimenting with Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Both of these philosophies stem from particular assumptions such as the vitality of experience and usefulness. Dewey held that transcendent ³truths´ were not as important as the collective experience of ordinary human beings. psychology and pedagogy at the University of Chicago. as some critics have charged.
of Dewey's achievements came in 1937 when he chaired the "Dewey Commission. At a gathering of Trotsky's defenders. he offered a notion that was both politically radical and educationally sound: Education must occur through real. removed from everyday experience. engaged to the child by teachers who visibly value the child. and concerned with social justice." and Dewey replied "If more socialists were like you. Humans. Dewey sees mental reflection as part of the sum of human experience). he was viewed by leftists as fair. "Truth" for pragmatists is not determined in reference to absolute metaphysical principles." and what coheres with the genuine experience of living subjects. Pragmatism holds that there is no such thing as "absolute certainty. few philosophers are more misunderstood. brought national fame to the young man from Burlington. He believed that shared experiences were always more important than ideological doctrines.net/tzaka/deweynew. or appeals to the truth of scripture. He influenced teachers and educational theorists all over the world. and these experiments. This near-certainty results not from an abstract examination of a theory or idea." This exchange speaks volumes about Dewey's philosophy and politics. I might be a socialist. along with his prolific and rigorous essays in philosophy and psychology.fred.edu/~mafjerke/dewey. but rather in reference to what "works. who by all accounts represented exactly the kind of "old school" traditionalism Dewey opposed.augie." in theory or practice. both as a race and as individuals. and he would produce a body of work nearly unmatched in the history of American philosophy.org/history/1997/may1997/dewey. James and Peirce believed that theoretical soundness was not a matter of adherence to some kind of transcendent logic. In 1904. ethics. This explains why. and sees nature as constantly changing.htm) Perhaps one of the most significant. His writings and experiments enjoyed free reign and institutional encouragement. (http://inst. "A thing is its history" for Dewey. genuine experience. and that history is lived experience (Gordon L.shtml). The fact that he could share such honest and sincere humor with one of the most dogmatic ideologues of the 20th century underscores Dewey's commitment to pluralism. and education. Ziniewicz. Dewey sees humans as part of nature. This will become important later. I might be a liberal." an effort to clear Soviet revolutionary leader Leon Trotsky of Josef Stalin's charges that Trotsky was a counterrevolutionary sabuteur. Dewey believes that what constitutes "human nature" is a history of experience. A collection of anti-Stalinist left activists and anti-capitalist figures asked Dewey to chair the commission because.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. politics. To them. when we see how strongly Dewey believes in cooperation instead of competition. which did not stop Stalin's agents from assassinating Trotsky in Mexico a short time later (wsws. although Dewey was no socialist. Dewey believes that history and experience are collective as well as individual. Dewey and Trotsky shared a laugh when Trotsky reportedly said "If more liberals were like you. Dewey's commission cleared Trotsky of all of Stalin's charges. John Dewey died on June 1. impartial. also have a history of change. Dewey left the University of Chicago to become a professor of philosophy at Columbia University in New York City.wcdebate. and allow the child to participate in his or her own education. William James was more concerned about people's personal religious experiences than with the various logical "proofs" for God's existence. www. and despite this impact. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Like existentialists.html). concerning the philosophy of religion. as part of nature. He wrote essays and books about epistemology.com . 1952. However. But unlike existentialists. Similarly. No other 20th century American philosopher has enjoyed a greater impact on the day-to-day workings of the system. Humans may. but through a contemplation of the consequences of behaving as if the theory or idea were true. Volume 9 Page 45 his progressive theories of education. the experiments and the progressive thinking also brought Dewey directly into conflict with University of Chicago President William Rainey Harper. Dewey's role in vindicating Trotsky is important because it shows how his concern for justice and solidarity overrode his differences with the communists. DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY OF PRAGMATISM Dewey's metaphysical assumptions naturally lead to an embrace of the kind of pragmatism advocated in the 19th century by William James (1842-1910) and Charles Saunders Peirce (1839-1914). and least known. John Dewey would stay at Columbia for the next 47 years. reach near-certainty about theories or ideas. through experience and reflection (in fact.
Moreover. where we learn from and with other people.xrefer. First. I reconsider the original idea. his collectivism stems directly from his belief in the universality of experience as the arbiter of knowledge. Dewey supports community ideals because. Dewey's philosophy is an affirmation of humans as part of an ever-changing natural world. I may work well under the pressure of the last minute. as a result of collective experience. my experience may contradict the advice of my parents and teachers. I do not learn things merely by self-reflection. Abstract principles are only valuable insofar as they cohere to our experiences of and in this ever-changing natural world. What counts as 'testing' may vary with the 'felt difficulty' in need of resolution-testing may occur in a chemistry laboratory. or religious experience. that I should adhere to my schedule and not put things off until the last minute. indeterminate situation into one that is sufficiently unified to enable warranted assertion or coherent action. Second.but in all cases there is a social context. my lived experience is more important than logic or metaphysics in determining the truth or falsity of a claim. and begin to think that procrastination might be bad after all. experience can be active or passive. and so on. I may have the idea that procrastination is an undesirable character trait. It may even include mystical. (http://www. The journey to higher levels of understanding has no end. emotional. I no longer have sound reason to hold it true. until the inevitable time that my last-minute miracle doesn't happen. I fail. as already stated. test." In fact. At that point. What is required in all cases is the application of intelligent inquiry. mediating both the terms of the initial problem and its solution. and through trial and error reach a higher stage of understanding. IBID) Many scholars refer to these pragmatic ideas as John Dewey¶s ³instrumentalism. rigorous meditation on ideas and things. When my experience no longer verifies it. because my teachers warn me about it. The best political world is one that maximizes the strength of communities.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and the knowledge that is the object of inquiry is.com/entry/551811) Finally. instrumentalism holds that humans encounter problems and exercise mental inquiry to solve those problems. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. experience is not (as it was for the empiricists). to the maximum benefit of all participants.´ In sum. I may have this idea because my parents kept pounding it into my head. however. I could never consider it "true. I am part of the world). the example shows that theories and ideas change. My experiences include the stories and experiences of other people. which we'll examine in the next section. (Ziniewicz. There are many reasons for this beyond mere progressive political sentiment. Part of this experience is our membership in a community. As long as those things add to my understanding of the way the world works (and remember. It includes long-term. pragmatically speaking.wcdebate. in legislation that changes some functions of a government . But unless the "procrastination is bad" idea is validated by my lived experience. just as available in matters of morals and politics as in matters of physics and chemistry. and includes reflection as well as interaction. Volume 9 Page 46 For example. For Dewey. My lived experience tells me that it is okay to procrastinate. "community ideals" are those ideas and principles that a community develops over time. Dewey insisted. Rather. Thus. and being in turn transformed by the inquiry. propose and oppose. the simple reception and contemplation of external data. In summary. Dewey is a strong proponent of collectivism and cooperation.com . my teacher tells me it's obvious I wrote it the night before. as there is no absolute certainty: Dewey's 'instrumentalism' defined inquiry as the transformation of a puzzling. This explains Dewey's strong support of schools and progressive education. They experiment. My assignment is poorly written. I hold something true as long as my experience verifies it. we achieve more cooperating with others than we achieve on our own. This example illustrates two important aspects of Dewey's pragmatism. I may be talented enough to pull off last-minute miracles. then they are valuable parts of the way I know things. Finally. At least. the self-correcting method of experimentally testing hypotheses created and refined from our previous experience. in imaginative rehearsal of conflicting habits of action.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 47
DEWEY¶S VIEWS ON EDUCATION ³Education is not a preparation for life; Education is life itself.´ ²John Dewey As might be suggested by his pragmatism, John Dewey believed education must be informed by genuine experience, constant interaction, and community values. Although he did not reject the notion that some individuals may be more motivated than others to learn, he nevertheless believed that one's environment was a huge determining factor in one's educational development. In many ways, then, Dewey's theory of education was a direct result of his pragmatist philosophical perspective. (www.infed.org/thinkers/et-dewey.htm) One of the most significant differences between traditional educational approaches and Dewey's "progressive" views of education was his perspective on the role of teachers. Dewey did not view instructors as absolute authorities imposing ideas and practices on students. Rather, he saw teachers as facilitators, guiding students through the learning process, and he believed this ought to be done as democratically as possible. Contrary to the picture some critics have painted of Dewey, he did not believe in some kind of simplistic (and utopian) democracy where students have as much authority as teachers. He simply believed that much more democracy was possible in the classroom; that students could be taught the virtues of democracy by learning to participate, in feasible ways, in their own educational experiences. Dewey rejected the "checklist" rigor of individual assignments and isolated studies in favor of group learning, discussion, and genuine experiences. If students are learning about agriculture, Dewey would rather students visit a farm and share in some of the farm work than just read about farms in a book. If the subject was politics and government, Dewey would prefer that students form their own governments and raise issues and solicit votes than merely listen to a lecture on how governments function in a democracy. OBJECTIONS TO DEWEY Critics of John Dewey¶s philosophy include both philosophers opposed to pragmatism, and political activists opposed to the soft, utopian ³liberalism´ of Dewey¶s political positions. Objections to pragmatism usually come in the form of metaphysical assertions that the truth of a claim is not dependent upon the experiential validation of that claim. To cite the example I used in the section on pragmatism, those opposed to Dewey would argue that the statement ³You should not procrastinate´ has a truth-value independent of my verification of that statement with my own experience. However, more strongly worded objections come from the political side. Primarily, Dewey is charged with having utopian aspirations regarding cooperation and progressivism, but at the same time ignoring real-world barriers to his utopia. Conservatives, for example, charge that Dewey believes all citizens (and particularly students, in regards to his educational philosophy) have the same basic abilities, or the same potential for genius; that Dewey seems to believe that all differences come from the environment. Conservatives believe that people have different abilities, and that perceived ³inequalities´ in society are really just the result of the cold, hard fact that some people are more talented and industrious than others. More criticism comes from those to the political left of Dewey, such as Marxists. For them, Dewey is a ³liberal´ in the negative sense of the term. He believes everyone can ³get along,´ even though Marxists believe that there can be no reconciliation between the ruling class and the working class. Thus, Dewey offers a vision of universal enlightenment and progressive, community virtues, but offers no material means of getting to such a world. The desire that we all get along and progress together is not enough.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 48
IMPLICATIONS FOR DEBATE Dewey¶s educational philosophy is in a class by itself, and any value debate topic dealing with education should inspire a great deal of research on Dewey¶s ideas. But in this section I will concern myself only with his general philosophy. The following main points suggest ways in which debaters can incorporate the ideas of John Dewey: Democracy: Obviously, Dewey is a strong proponent of democracy, for unique reasons. Dewey believes that we learn, both individually and collectively, through experimentation and the consideration of all ideas and possibilities. For Dewey, the clash of ideas and approaches found in a healthy democracy is the paradigm example of a progressive society. Necessity of Experience rather than Idealism: Dewey provides a solid answer to philosophers such as Plato, Hegel, Ayn Rand, Leo Strauss, and other thinkers who believe that the ³Truth´ is a transcendent set of principles simply waiting to be discovered. Rather, Dewey believes, we ³make the truth,´ not in some relativistic sense, but through genuine human experience. Moreover, Dewey would accuse these idealist and objectivist philosophers of being foundationally anti-democratic. A natural conclusion to Dewey¶s philosophy is that our collective notions of truth ought to be decided democratically. The idea that ³Truth´ emanates from on high is contrary to the notions of progressive, participatory democracy. Cooperation versus Conflict: Obviously, Dewey believes that we learn more together than we do apart, and that we achieve more when we unite around common goals than when we compete with one another. He rejected the notion of competition in academics and embraced the idea that we can learn cooperatively, helping each other out, learning from common struggles. CONCLUSION John Dewey represents something very important about American philosophy. Instead of being concerned about what is ideally true, metaphysically true, logically true or mathematically true, Dewey was concerned about the truth of what works for people in their everyday lives. This is radically democratizing, and wholly appropriate to a people who, at least in principle, rejected the divine right of kings and the assumptions of aristocracy. It is appropriate to an experiment in democracy amidst pluralism and uncertainty. Debaters wishing to incorporate Dewey's ideas ought to research both the foundations of his pragmatism, and the implications of his pragmatism on his educational theories. Although these two aspects of his philosophy are intimately related, the literature is divided rather distinctively. Debaters might also contemplate the fact that, as they search the library for Dewey's works, they might well be using the Dewey Decimal System, devised by John Dewey to catalogue books in libraries. In many ways, Dewey would be a strong advocate of academic debate. Like the participatory models of education he advocated, debate is an exercise in empowering, involved activity. It is student-centered and relies on the students experimenting, succeeding and failing, and learning from each exchange. In fact, understanding why debate is educational for you can help you understand exactly the kind of education that Dewey wanted for students. At the same time, debaters should be aware that objections to pragmatism are important. Dewey and his followers talk about the importance of democracy and participation, but they seem unable to suggest ways to dismantle the very real power structures that block these possibilities. Perhaps creative debaters can synthesize Deweyan pragmatism with effective political strategies for actually opening up the real, material possibility of change in a world where, despite Dewey's efforts, elitism still remains.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 49
BIBLIOGRAPHY Baker, Melvin C. FOUNDATIONS OF JOHN DEWEY¶S EDUCATIONAL THEORY (New York: Atherton Press, 1966). Campbell, James. UNDERSTANDING JOHN DEWEY: NATURE AND COOPERATIVE INTELLIGENCE (Chicago: Open Court, 1995). Dewey, John and James Hayden Tufts. ETHICS (New York: H. Holt, 1936). Dewey, John. A COMMON FAITH (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1960). Dewey, John. ART AS EXPERIENCE (New York: Minton, Balch & Company, 1934). Dewey, John. ESSAYS IN EXPERIMENTAL LOGIC (New York: Dover Publications, 1953) Dewey, John. EXPERIENCE AND NATURE (La Salle, IL: Open Court Publishing Company, 1958). Dewey, John. FREEDOM AND CULTURE (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1939). Dewey, John. HOW WE THINK (Boston: D.C. Heath, 1910). Dewey, John. INDIVIDUALISM OLD AND NEW (New York: Minton, Balch & Company, 1930). Dewey, John. LECTURES IN THE PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1899). Dewey, John. LECTURES ON ETHICS, 1900-1901 (Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press, 1991). Dewey, John. LIBERALISM AND SOCIAL ACTION (New York: Capricorn Books, 1963). Dewey, John. THE CHILD AND THE CURRICULUM, AND SCHOOL AND SOCIETY (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1956). Dewey, John. THEORY OF THE MORAL LIFE (New York: Irvington Publishers, 1980). Dewey, John. DEMOCRACY AND EDUCATION: AN INTRODUCTION TO THE PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION (New York: The Macmillan company, 1916). Gavin, W. J. CONTEXT OVER FOUNDATION: DEWEY AND MARX (Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1988). Haskins, Casey, and Seiple, David I.. DEWEY RECONFIGURED: ESSAYS ON DEWEYAN PRAGMATISM (Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1999). Nissen, Lowell. JOHN DEWEY¶S THEORY OF INQUIRY AND TRUTH (The Hague: Mouton, 1966). Popp, Jerome A. NATURALIZING PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION: JOHN DEWEY IN THE POSTANALYTIC PERIOD (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1998). Schilpp, Paul Arthur. THE PHILOSOPHY OF JOHN DEWEY (La Salle, IL: Open Court, 1951). Soneson, Jerome Paul. PRAGMATISM AND PLURALISM: JOHN DEWEY¶S SIGNIFICANCE FOR THEOLOGY (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1993).
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
freedom is a resolute will operating in a world in some respects indeterminate. Social conditions interact with the preferences of an individual (that are his individuality) in a way favorable to actualizing freedom only when they develop intelligence. and resolute.´ are not a hindrance to freedom. but a necessary factor in coming to be effectively that which we have the capacity to grow into. 3. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. like mathematics. 1991. just as the art of painting requires paint. and that the gift operates by a kind of spontaneous combustion. 1968. the power to think requires even more conscious and consecutive attention. Judgment or responsibility depends upon the balance between the subject and the predicate. If the other arts have to be acquired through ordered apprenticeship. In its reality. American pragmatist philosopher. and you have freedom. 296. It requires favorable objective conditions. In obligation. brushes. between the natural self and the ideal self. and the emphasis is on the other side of the identity between the two. however. Volume 9 Page 50 TRUTH IS PROGRESSIVE AND EVOLVING 1. But we appear to assume that ability to think effectively in social. 298. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. the explicit thing. In the idea of responsibility that unity of the natural and the ideal self (that it is the business of the natural self to become the ideal self and of the ideal self to be realized in the natural self) is the prominent thing. PRODUCING CHANGING CONCEPTIONS OF MORALITY John Dewey. is the most difficult occupation in which man engages. Carry that identity farther. The most important problem in freedom of thinking is whether social conditions obstruct the development of judgment and insight or effectively promote it. 2. Thinking. FREEDOM CONSISTS IN RECOGNIZING AND ADAPTING TO CHANGE John Dewey. and canvas.com . In other words. but upon the whole we act as if that were true. We take for granted the necessity of special opportunity and prolonged education to secure ability to think in a special calling. 1968. Few would perhaps defend this doctrine thus boldly stated. 89. but power of vision and reflection. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. ADAPTING TO SOCIAL CONDITIONS DETERMINES OUR ABILITY TO THINK WELL John Dewey. alert. The actual self is not complete as long as it is stated simply as given. p. p. p. Constant and uniform relations in change and a knowledge of them in ³laws. American pragmatist philosopher. not abstract knowledge and abstract thought. the element of tension or resistance between the two is perhaps the more emphasized. That is the basis of responsibility. because open and moving toward a new future.wcdebate. No more than any other art is it developed internally. desire and purpose more flexible. For these take effect in making preference. American pragmatist philosopher. But the necessary unity between the two is involved. LECTURES ON ETHICS. Freedom has too long been thought of as an indeterminate power operating in a closed and ended world. SOCIAL CONDITIONS INTERACT WITH INDIVIDUALS. The point of simple tension between the two has been passed. It is complete only in its possibilities. the possible self does not represent a remote. Freedom is the equivalent of the reality of growth. abstract possibility but is the possibility of the actual self. Make it not merely an identity in conception but in action.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. political and moral matters is a gift of God.
American pragmatist philosopher.´ 2. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. 139. p. 1968. which for us monopolizes the title of reality. they became hindrances and annoyances as the effects of new methods. Since it is a certain kind of object which we want. Since it is only genuine and sincere things. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. Since actual.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. It lacks the hallmark of value. p. this identification of truth and ³reality´ is sound and reasonable: rationalistically. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. in command of capital. our being uniquely what we are and not imitators and parasites of others. Adapted well enough to the localized and fixed conditions of that earlier age. American pragmatist philosopher. For ordinary purposes. I sum up by saying that the possibility of freedom is deeply grounded in our very beings. 48-49. American pragmatist philosopher. in the problem of personal freedom. Volume 9 Page 51 THERE ARE NO TRANSCENDENT MORAL TRUTHS 1. pp. perfectly real. American pragmatist philosopher. 2. BUT CHANGE IN RESPONSE TO HISTORICAL CIRCUMSTANCES John Dewey. MATERIAL MEANS TO ATTAIN CHOICE John Dewey. explains the otherwise paradoxical fact that the slogans of the liberalism of one period often become the bulwarks of reaction in a subsequent era. We are all children who saw ³really and truly. ABSTRACT FREEDOM IS NOT ENOUGH: WE NEED THE MATERIAL AND ECONOMIC MEANS TO BE FREE John Dewey. the other phenomenal and kept continually on the jump because otherwise its own inherent nothingness would lead to its total annihilation. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. this possibility has to be actualized. 297-98. the true kind. FREEDOM REQUIRES THE OBJECTIVE. the truth and the realness of things are synonymous.wcdebate. it leads to the notion of the duplicate versions of reality. while it is. But the absolutistic logic of rigid syllogistic forms infected these ideas. It is one with our individuality. much less a deviation or excrescence. teleologically. that is for practical purposes. MORAL AND LEGAL RULES ARE NOT FIXED AND TRANSCENDENT. one absolute and static because exhausted. use of coal and steam. The movement of emancipation expressed itself in principles of liberty in use of property. needing to be constantly tested by the way in which they work out in application to concrete situations. pp. and freedom of contract. The notion that men are equally free to act if only the same legal arrangements apply equally to all² irrespective of differences in education. The latter merely liberates force and ability as that happens to be distributed by past accidents of history. effective. and are not found in the original and isolated constitution of human nature. Pragmatically. VALUES ARE DEPENDENT UPON REAL WORLD CONSEQUENCES AND CIRCUMSTANCES John Dewey.com . For the conditions that form political and economic liberty are required in order to realize the potentiality of freedom each of us carries with him in his very structure. 1968. whether moral or psychological. and. it can only be actualized through interaction with objective conditions. But like all other possibilities. as facts have demonstrated. which were embodied in a mass of legal decisions. rights and demands are products of interactions.´ A reality which is taken in organic response so as to lead to subsequent reactions that are off the track and aside from the mark. like all others. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. There was a time in the eighteenth century when the great social need was emancipation of industry and trade from a multitude of restrictions which held over from the feudal estate of Europe. 1968. Failure to recognize that general legal rules and principles are working hypotheses. one which will be as favorable as possible to a consistent and liberal or growing functioning. is not good reality. FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY REQUIRE MATERIAL EQUALITY 1. things which are good for what they lay claim to in the way of consequences. mere elimination of obstructions is not enough. existentially speaking. 1968. which we want or are after. 281. The question of political and economic freedom is not an addendum or afterthought. that is. and the control of the social environment which is furnished by the institution of property²is a pure absurdity. morally they alone are ³real. it is this kind. emerged.
S. 114. p. 2. by the informal learning that went on in the home and in the local community and wanted to forge a link between this sort of learning and learning at school. its adherents have been towed along in the wake of the more aggressive and dominant forces of plutocratic reaction. it has been duplicated in every serious crisis convulsing the United States since that time. p. for it slurs over the dualism between the teacher¶s position as an authority and the legitimate demand for ³participation. which was almost as idealistic as his conception of democracy. Certainly a philosophy like instrumentalism. This disparity between teacher and taught²especially in the primary school²makes talk of ³democracy in education´ problematic. 1975.com . Instead of playing a directing role. 256. However. JOHN DEWEY RECONSIDERED. 251.´ This led him to oversimplify the dualism between what he called ³internal conditions´ and what is the result of social influences.´ A teacher is not just a leader in a game. without examining the requisite objective grounds for the hypothetical belief. DEWEY¶S EDUCATIONAL THEORIES IGNORED SOCIAL CONDITIONS R. as by Dewey. professor of the philosophy of education at the University of London. some suggestion of participation in decisionmaking. Marxist philosopher and activist. an authority on some aspect of the culture. at least in broad outline. DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY HAS BEEN DISPROVEN BY 20TH CENTURY HISTORY George Novack. who is society¶s agent for the transmission and development of its cultural heritage. Dewey was impressed. Peters. Marxist philosopher and activist. for it combined a conception of the child. to some extent. 115. to have interpreted their meaning. Their perplexity and powerlessness was first exhibited in the First World War. Dewey¶s treatment of the psychological principle was equally unsatisfactory. DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION IS FLAWED 1.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. professor of the philosophy of education at the University of London. Just as ideas have no validity before all the returns are in but must be tested afresh in each instance. PRAGMATISM VERSUS MARXISM. should have done no less. and thereby to have helped influence the course of events in a progressive direction. Dewey¶s view of the teacher. the record shows that at every critical turn of American history in the twentieth century. the growth and outbreak of these upheavals. Any philosophy which had not lost contact with the realities of social life should have been able to foresee. Dewey¶s theory of ethics suffers from the same faults as his theory of knowledge.S. unless ³democracy´ is watered down to mean just multiplying shared experiences and openness of communication. JOHN DEWEY RECONSIDERED.wcdebate. p. The most it can offer is a reasonable assumption or hopeful expectation that this way may be better than that. 2. If ³democracy´ is to include. to have prepared and equipped people to cope with them. p. Deweyism has been caught off guard and overwhelmed by the sweep of events. which claims to be so realistic and practical. we are then confronted with current tensions underlying the question of how much ³participation´ is compatible with the freedom and authority of the teacher. is also unsatisfactory. 1977. as it usually does. Volume 9 Page 52 DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY IS GENERALLY REMOVED FROM REALITY 1. DEWEY¶S MORAL PHILOSOPHY HAS NO OBJECTIVE BASIS George Novack. like a football captain. so moral judgments have no verifiable value or weight in advance of their results in action. but pupils come to a teacher because they are ignorant. But he did not ask the questions ³which home?´ and ³which local community?´. 1977. and he or she is meant to be. Peters. In a game most of the participants know how to play. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Instrumentalist morality goes from case to case and from one step to the next without reaching any general standards of right or wrong and what makes them so. 1975. for sociologists have catalogued the vast disparities that exist between homes in this respect. PRAGMATISM VERSUS MARXISM. DEWEY FAILS SYNTHESIZE THE TEACHER¶S ROLES AS PARTICIPANT AND AUTHORITY R. with a too limited view of what he called ³the social medium. as I have reiterated.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 53
DEWEY¶S JUSTIFICATIONS FOR DEMOCRACY ARE FLAWED 1. DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY OF DEMOCRACY IS MYSTICAL AND IMPRACTICAL R.S. Peters, professor of the philosophy of education at the University of London, JOHN DEWEY RECONSIDERED, 1977, pp. 114-115. Dewey himself never paid much attention to institutional issues. This was not just because he lived before the days when ³participation´ became an issue. It was also because his attitude towards the democratic way of life was semi-mystical. ³When the emotional force, the mystical force, one might say, of the miracles of the shared life and shared experience is spontaneously felt, the hardness and concreteness of contemporary life will be bathed in a light that never was on land or sea.´ I wonder if he always felt like this about sitting on committees! 2. DEWEY¶S BELIEF IN DEMOCRACY IS BASED ON MYSTICAL, RELIGIOUS NOTIONS George Novack, Marxist philosopher and activist, PRAGMATISM VERSUS MARXISM, 1975, p. 291. Dewey derived his basic stance toward democracy not, as he contended, from a scientific investigation of the history of society and a realistic analysis of American conditions, but rather from a tradition that was rooted in the mystical equality promised by the Christians. He accused the dualistic idealist philosophers of Greek and modern times of ³operating with ideal fancies´ instead of dealing with the given facts. Yet he committed the same error of metaphysical abstraction in the pivotal question of his whole philosophy: the origin, meaning, and application of democracy. He approached democracy not in its concrete manifestations throughout class society, but as an abstraction to be stuffed with the content he preferred to give it. Democracy to him was less a historical phenomenon than a secular religion. DEWEY¶S POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY IGNORES HUMAN NATURE AND HISTORY 1. DEWEY IGNORES NATURAL DIFFERENCES AND INEQUALITIES Anthony Flew, professor of philosophy at the University of Reading, JOHN DEWEY RECONSIDERED, 1977, p. 87. But even if we do concede that this opposite tendency really is implicit in the original insistence upon maximum ³interplay with other forms of association,´ there is no getting away from the truth of Bantock¶s contention that ³there are strong pressures of equality of outcome in the work of John Dewey;´ for if associations are good and democratic in so far as their members share numerous and varied interests, and if education for democracy is to be a matter of concentrating on the development of various but always shared interests, then the variety of those shared interests, and the scope for independent individual development, necessarily must be limited correspondingly. It must, that is to say, be limited by and to whatever happens to be the maximum attainable either by the least richly talented or by the modal majority. Maybe Dewey himself would have been unhappy about the full force of these implications. But he never comes to terms in this context with the truth that people vary enormously in all natural endowments. 2. DEWEY IGNORES CLASS CONFLICT George Novack, Marxist philosopher and activist, PRAGMATISM VERSUS MARXISM, 1975, pp. 250-51. Dewey refused to believe that class conflict arises from deep-seated, compelling, and ineradicable causes in the capitalist system. It was an occasional and subordinate phenomenon that could be overcome by joint effort, good will, mutual give and take. He therefore looked to different agencies and means than the Marxists for achieving the desirable ends of a better life. He wrote: ³That work can be done only by the resolute, patient, cooperative activities of men and women of good will, drawn from every useful calling, over an indefinitely long period.´ In other words, class collaboration is the preferable means of social reformation, political action, and moral improvement. Class struggle goes in the wrong direction and gives disastrous results.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 54
When most of us think of Woodrow Wilson, we don¶t necessarily think ³philosopher´ -- but that¶s what this visionary president of the United States was. Best remembered as the progenitor of the League of Nations (the precursor to today¶s United Nations) and of the fourteen point program for peace, Wilson¶s name is also invoked by students of international relations theory today in the context of so-called ³Wilsonian idealism´ -- the notion that an interventionist American foreign policy can spawn positive changes in other countries and cultures. This, for better or for worse, is the former president¶s predominant legacy: the liberal internationalism that continues to inform American foreign policy under most Democratic presidents (and some Republicans, such as the first George Bush). Like most historic ³truths´, these simple summations contain quite a bit of accuracy and a little sleight-ofhand. The veracity of these statements depend on one¶s political perspective, on one¶s position in the world, and various other factors. I will try to present diverse perspectives on the life, work and thoughts of this embattled and interesting president. Though perspectives differ on his ideas -- and the efficacy of those views in a swift and fierce world -- it cannot be denied that those views have had a major impact on American and global visions of justice. THE LIFE OF WOODROW WILSON Thomas Woodrow Wilson was born in 1856 in Staunton, Virginia, and grew up during and immediately following the Civil War. His father was a Presbyterian minister, and at times taught college courses. He was inspired by his father¶s religion and love of education. Young Woodrow Wilson first went to Davidson College in North Carolina, but was forced to withdraw due to illness. He graduated what was then the College of New Jersey (and what later became Princeton University) and went on to get his law degree from the University of Virginia in 1879-80 and passed the Georgia bar in 1882. His law practice floundered, though, prompting a career change into government and politics. He returned to school in 1883, studying government and history at Johns Hopkins University. His book Congressional Government was accepted as his dissertation in 1885, and led to his receipt of the Ph.D. degree in political science from Johns Hopkins. To this day, Wilson is the only U.S. president to hold a Ph.D. proving that most presidents just aren¶t too smart. But Wilson was, teaching at Bryn Mawr College, Wesleyan University and Princeton University. After an accomplished career as an author and essayist, he was named president of Princeton University in 1902. From there, politics was a natural step. In 1910, Wilson won the Democratic nomination for governor of New Jersey, subsequently winning the election by a wide margin. His agenda was a progressive one: he focused on preventing the public¶s exploitation by monopolies and trusts. This earned him serious popularity with the masses, and just two years later he accepted the Democratic nomination for president. Wilson called his platform the "New Freedom" platform, and gave keen attention to stimulating the American economy. Again, he earned a landslide victory, winning the presidency with 435 electoral votes out of a possible 531. His brother wasn¶t a governor, and he did not have to cheat to win. True to his word, Wilson followed through on a domestic agenda based on busting corrupt trusts. To this end, he created a dramatic array of economic reforms. He pushed through the Underwood Act (which reformed tariffs and instituted a progressive income tax) and the Federal Reserve Bill (which established our modern banking system, creating new currency and establishing the twelve Federal Reserve banks and their board of governors) in 1913. Yes, we can partially blame Alan Greenspan on Wilson. He also established the Federal Trade Commission in 1914 to restrict "unfair" trade practices.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook, Volume 9 Page 55
These economic reforms show Wilson¶s brand of liberalism: create reforms that stabilize a functioning market economy and offer marginal protections for the poor, while promoting international trade to enrich the wealthy. You can see the economic legacy of Wilson in today¶s New Democrats. THE WAR YEARS Some of the controversy surrounding Wilson¶s ³idealism´ involves the way he handled American involvement in World War I, which began in 1914. Wilson, despite growing pressure from allies like Britain (who were losing an entire generation of young men), resisted American involvement in Europe¶s war. In fact, he ran for reelection in 1916 with the slogans "he kept us out of war" and ³peace without victory.´ Conventional wisdom holds that escalation of submarine warfare by Germany forced Wilson¶s hand in declaring war -- the sinking of the passenger liner Lusitania is often cited. It may be, however, that these events came at the same time a revolution in Wilson¶s thinking was brewing --a revolution that would inspire his ideas on how to make peace. Some critics believe that Wilson, despite his public pronouncements, had already decided to enter the fray. They point to that fact that he created the U.S. government¶s first major state propaganda agency (the Committee on Public Information, also called the Creel Commission). The population of the U.S. didn¶t favor war at the time, and the theory goes that Wilson intended to change their minds. At any rate, he asked Congress for a declaration of war in April 1917. This turn of events led the United States into the fight, and led to Wilson¶s famous efforts at peace -- culminating in the Fourteen Points Address of 1918, which we¶ll discuss below. The critics on the right accused Wilson of thinking wrongly that the United States owes an obligation to the rest of the world -- that instead of intervening to help other nations, we should tend to our own business. The critics on the left had then and have now a radically different take: that not only are their few if any places where American intervention can help the rest of the world, the impulse to intervene is itself a pernicious manifestation of liberal internationalism that desires to control the rest of the human community. This type of thinking reveals itself at home, too, when people opposing governmental policies must also be controlled through imprisonment. Historians such as Howard Zinn point to the Sedition Acts that were used to jail opponents of the war. He criticizes the administration for passing such legislation and the Supreme Court for failing to challenge it on a constitutional basis: This shows the irony of liberalism: Wilson supported many progressive social agendas (women received the right to vote when he was in office, for example), but when one¶s own power and decision-making are challenged, that commitment to social progress sometimes flies out the nearest window. Domestic policy aside -- and it was not an insignificant part of Wilson¶s presidency -- most people remember Wilson for his foreign policy, specifically the role he played in the ending of World War I. Let¶s turn to his ideas on that front now.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate.com
Wilson had this to say about the end of the ³war to end all wars´: ³We entered this war because violations of right had occurred which touched us to the quick and made the life of our own people impossible unless they were corrected and the world secured once for all against their recurrence. determine its own institutions. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. we see the ideas he held most dear in both promotion of peace and economic justice. A free. Absolute freedom of navigation upon the seas. of all economic barriers and the establishment of an equality of trade conditions among all the nations consenting to the peace and associating themselves for its maintenance. the Versailles Treaty was signed with Germany during the Paris Peace Conference. except as the seas may be closed in whole or in part by international action for the enforcement of international covenants. alike in peace and in war. How to establish justice? The first five points hold up remarkably well in today¶s political climate. and absolutely impartial adjustment of all colonial claims. however. therefore.one largely supported by both political parties in the United States. be assured of justice and fair dealing by the other peoples of the world as against force and selfish aggression. the Europeans considered Wilson a key factor in making peace -. skeptical of the League of Nations. Still.com . and for our own part we see very clearly that unless justice be done to others it will not be done to us. and particularly that it be made safe for every peace-loving nation which. open-minded. The removal. openly arrived at. including the internationalist tendencies favoring collective security that are even today rejected by many Republicans who favor the big-stick. II. In fact.´ Wilson said.he was awarded the 1919 Nobel Peace Prize. IV. All the peoples of the world are in effect partners in this interest. III. Adequate guarantees given and taken that national armaments will be reduced to the lowest point consistent with domestic safety. they might have been written after the Gulf War by George Bush or Bill Clinton. unilaterist school of ³diplomacy.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. that the ideas behind the league have lost their relevance.´ That doesn¶t mean. wishes to live its own life. There. Before presenting the fourteen points themselves. so far as possible.´ One can see in these first several points the framework for establishing what we would call today a ³neoliberal´ economic order -. a new Republican Congress in the United States rejected the peace negotiated under Wilson. is nothing peculiar to ourselves. and a colonial system that would provide raw materials and labor for the trading system) and an international market that today we might call globalized. FOURTEEN POINTS The best single summary of Woodrow Wilson¶s political philosophy came in his Fourteen Points Address to Congress. outside territorial waters. where he promoted his plan for peace in Europe.wcdebate. Open covenants of peace. the removal of all economic barriers to trade. Volume 9 Page 56 THE IDEAS OF WOODROW WILSON In 1919. like our own. ³I. It is that the world be made fit and safe to live in. after which there shall be no private international understandings of any kind but diplomacy shall proceed always frankly and in the public view. What we demand in this war. A separate peace had to be negotiated between the United States and Germany. based upon a strict observance of the principle that in determining all such questions of sovereignty the interests of the populations concerned must have equal weight with the equitable claims of the government whose title is to be determined. an international regime managing trade. However. Why was the peace negotiated by Wilson so controversial at home? Many of his ideas were quite ahead of their time. V. The prime points of this neoliberal order include free trade (absolute freedom of navigation.
and even if we can. The right has a somewhat different slant. These thinkers claim that it¶s a fallacy to presume we can effectively promote those institutions worldwide.com . Some see him as a man who naively believed one powerful country could bring peace to the world. Overseas.) From another right-wing perspective. This shows that he believed in government as a positive force for change in economics as in foreign policy. in my estimation. this vision is what¶s behind today¶s U. But that¶s another story. stabilized the economy with numerous reforms that foreshadowed big-government liberalism. We¶ve talked a bit about the left¶s criticism of Wilson as a Machiavellian liberal who wanted to build a world he and his country could control. His ideas have impacted today¶s Democratic party in at least two major ways.N. and established the progressive income tax. Volume 9 Page 57 View this in the context of his domestic economic policy: Wilson established the Federal Reserve Bank. -. they would argue. for example). to see Wilson at once as overly idealistic and overly cynical. including evacuation of conquered lands. a ³consensus´ to Horowitz means something different than what it does to the rest of the world. But the fourteenth point was the most controversial to the Republican Congress Wilson faced at home. was quoted in a Cato publication as concluding: Of course. DEBATE APPLICATION Motives are a difficult thing to ascertain in any human being. etc. the nation-building activities have bad tradeoffs. One scholar on inter-American affairs. A general association of nations must be formed under specific covenants for the purpose of affording mutual guarantees of political independence and territorial integrity to great and small states alike. Points six through thirteen establish the territorial settlements following the conflict. As the far-right author David Horowitz wrote this February: (Of course. both in domestic and foreign policy. is Wilson¶s legacy. As long as the United States can protect itself with the most powerful military in the world. groups like the Cato institute toe a more isolationist line. to examine the policies Wilson favored rather than muddy the water with simple labels like ³idealism. Take the example of Latin America. It is possible. while maintaining other kinds of dominance (economic. then. Lowenthal. but made more of these policies¶ effects on the nations in question rather than the impact they had on the United States. the establishment of an independent Polish state. Abraham F. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and work together toward common goals. Wilson would argue that promoting ³justice´ (through institutions like American democracy) abroad is the best way to get peace.a collective body for the nations of the world to gather and discuss problems. preferring to think of Wilson as a meddlesome tinkerer who bumbled into trouble by trying to do too much good overseas.wcdebate. where Wilson once refused to acknowledge non-democratic governments. Others see him as a man who wanted to bring ³peace´ to rich nations and rich men living within them.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. A more concrete term we can grab onto might be ³liberalism´: the belief that government economic or social interventions are necessary to build a just world. Many left-wing thinkers have taken a similar angle. given the myriad factors at play in the formation of one¶s thinking. they argue.´ which mean different things to different people. Not even the mainstream right takes him seriously.´ As we¶ve talked about. he sought to promote trade as a path to peace. Wilson is important to understand as a precursor to today¶s modern liberal politicians. why blunt the focus of American foreign policy by taking on multiple ³humanitarian´ missions? This kind of misguided internationalism. solve disputes. it¶s overly simplistic to say that only the right favors this line of analysis. It is better. and arguably the one with the most historic staying power: ³XIV.
000 miles by rail around the country. he fell ill and never fully recovered. For these reasons. was interventionist by nature. One can see Bill Clinton¶s economic policy¶s roots in Wilson. Harding in 1920.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Cox took the Democratic nomination and was beaten by Warren G. He never saw most of the impact his ideas would have on the world. D. it is possible to see both Bush¶s and Clinton¶s attacks on Iraq. his dogged pursuit of the Versailles Treaty necessitated traveling 8. Since Wilson was unable to campaign for the presidency. He passed the Family Leave Act as a domestic reform to marginally benefit working Americans while vigorously pursuing free trade agreements abroad. either).C.com . Overseas. Volume 9 Page 58 Economic policy: unlike his Republican successors such as Calvin Coolidge. CONCLUSION: THE LEGACY OF WOODROW WILSON When Wilson was president. He believed the government should take an active role in stimulating the economy through establishing necessary regulations at home.wcdebate. for example. despite his initial reluctance to get involved in World War I. as Wilsonian in nature -. he backed the free trade policies that modern Democrats fall over themselves to back. but then pursued his own policies after employing substantial spin from his propaganda agency. Wilson didn¶t believe in ³laissezfaire´ (let it be) economics. This can be explained by the American public¶s marked opposition to the war: he knew from polls what a winning election issue would be. After this effort. Foreign policy: Wilson. Wilson retired to Washington.the defense of a nation from an attack by an autocratic and oppressive neighbor (though Wilson wouldn¶t have been a fan of Kuwait¶s oppressive monarchy. James M. where he died in 1924. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www..
Lloyd. Herbert. Rhodes University.htm. Louis. 1971. 2000.org/Sustainers/content/2000-05/07zinn. John Morton. CAMPAIGNS FOR PROGRESSIVISM AND PEACE.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2000. 2002. 1991 Zinn.wcdebate. Daniels. Ambrosius. available online at http://www.ufl. p. accessed April 22. PBS documentary. Addison-Wesley Pub Co. AMERICA'S RESPONSE TO WAR AND REVOLUTION.africa. 1913-1921. WOODROW WILSON AND THE POLITICS OF MORALITY. 2002. WOODROW WILSON: A PENGUIN LIFE. May 7.com . Arthur.pbs. Cambridge University Press.zmag. University of California Press. 1990 AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. THE NEW FREEDOM. Blum. WOODROW WILSON AND THE AMERICAN DIPLOMATIC TRADITION: THE TREATY FIGHT IN PERSPECTIVE.html.htm. accessed April 22. 1998 Chomsky. 1995 Kuehl. Princeton University Press. November 1994. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. Josephus.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. Z MAGAZINE NETWORK DAILY COMMENTARY. 2002. 1956 Rowen. 1980 Link. Greenwood Publishing Group. University of Arizona Press. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit. Princeton University Press. Princeton University Press. Oxford University Press. Z MAGAZINE. 1965 Link. 2001. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. Kent State University Press. Warren and Lynne Dunn. Viking Press. 2. Noam. http://www.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. No. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Korwa G. Professor Emeritus of History at Boston University. Arthur. South Africa. Political Studies Department. Gilderhus. 1920-1939. Auchincloss. PAN AMERICAN VISIONS: WOODROW WILSON AND THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE. TO END ALL WARS: WOODROW WILSON AND THE QUEST FOR A NEW WORLD ORDER. 10. THE LIFE OF WOODROW WILSON. Howard. Vol. WOODROW WILSON: A LIFE FOR WORLD PEACE. 1997 Levin. KEEPING THE COVENANT: AMERICAN INTERNATIONALISTS AND THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS. 1998. Volume 9 Page 59 BIBLIOGRAPHY Adar. accessed May 1. http://web. Mark. Thomas. 1986 Knock. Norman Gordon. WOODROW WILSON AND WORLD POLITICS. 2.
Vol. 3. Wilson matters as the person who led the United States into global geopolitics. Historian. 2. 1998. np. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. 2002. some of which had to wait a long time to come back. Mulder. PBS documentary. with Cold War prism taking a centre stage. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. Wilson matters as someone who followed a progressive political agenda and who established a model for subsequent possibilities. http://web. The direct election of United States senators. p. WILSON¶S LEGACY INCLUDES MANY PROGRESSIVE AGENDAS Ira Katznelson. PBS documentary. 2002. Vice-President Nixon in his report to Eisenhower explained that "the course of Africa's development.html. available online at http://www. WILSON SUPPORTED MANY PROGRESSIVE AGENDAS Ira Katznelson. The period of his presidency was a period therefore of extraordinary new assertion of governmental capacity in the United States. THAT PROMOTED COLONIALISM Korwa G.wcdebate. PBS documentary. 2002. Wilson matters as the first modern president. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit.htm. 2001.. 2. and women¶s suffrage. the US welcomed decolonization and independence in Africa in the 1960s. emerging American national interests became defined in terms of combatting communism in Africa and other parts of the world. Historian. as well as presidential ambition. np. accessed May 1. Adar.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. After his visit to Africa. 4. such concerns were evident even prior to much of Africa's independence.pbs. Wilson's also important as the president who presided over a number of major constitutional changes.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. 2. Political Studies Department. IT WASN¶T WILSONIANISM. np. Indeed. However. p. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.ufl. South Africa.could well prove to be the decisive factor between the forces of freedom and international communism".pbs.html. accessed May 1. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. I see Wilson's life as tragic in the sense that he obviously lost on the League. p. 2001. available online at http://www. WILSON¶S CONCEPTS OF POWER AND SOCIAL JUSTICE ARE STILL USEFUL John M. Rhodes University. He's not tragic however in the larger scope of American history because what he did was to help us understand the complexity of power both domestically and internationally in ways that we are still working with. available online at http://www.pbs. accessed April 22. No.html.. p. accessed May 1.com . Volume 9 Page 60 WILSON PROMOTED PROGRESSIVE SOCIAL AGENDAS 1. 2001. BUT THE COLD WAR. prohibition. In the spirit of Wilsonianism.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2002.africa. np. Historian. The Wilsonian concepts of how political power should be used on behalf of social justice are still defining assumptions for twentieth century American political life.
For Wilson.wcdebate. the momentum on the issues of democracy and human rights was evidenced with the appointment of Eleanor Roosevelt to Chair a Commission on Human Rights. Although the United States did not become a contracting party to the League. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. PBS documentary. 2002. with African countries which were independent at the time as well as India and the socialist countries taking the lead. 3. Rhodes University. accessed May 1. Adar. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit. 2. Wilsonianism not only challenged dictatorial and authoritarian systems worldwide but it also helped oppressed people become aware of their rights. 2001. In this respect. I see it at least more in terms of a process than I do in terms of a product. Wilsonianism had a global impact. np.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. limited government. WILSONIAN THINKING HELPED PAVE THE WAY FOR DECOLONIZATION OF AFRICA Korwa G. The results of Roosevelt's Commission were the establishment of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and its corollaries the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic.ufl. 4.N. 1998. 2. WILSON¶S IDEAS WERE VICTORIOUS EVEN THOUGH HIS POLICIES WEREN¶T Jay Winter.com .pbs. np. The idea of universal morality was central for Wilson.htm. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON.africa. 2. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit. Political Studies Department. p. Political Studies Department. 2. the realization of individual freedom. he argued. accessed April 22. This idealism culminated in the formation of the League of Nations in 1919. AND HAD A GLOBAL IMPACT Korwa G. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. He left his stamp upon the way in which American foreign policy has been formulated throughout the 20th Century and the paradox is that a man whose vision was repudiated by the political leadership of his time managed to achieve a way of framing the language of American foreign policy throughout the 80 years since his death. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. np. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.html. Adar. p. Historian. Moreover. np. PBS documentary. to involve himself in great affairs and to try to find ways in which to work out the problems created by those great affairs. South Africa.ufl.html. If one wants to talk about Wilson¶s legacy. Such thinking would go on to inform the founding fathers of the United Nations. he was never evasive in that way. 2002. http://web. Thus. No. accessed April 22. Vol. p. 2002. For the colonized peoples of Africa. available online at http://www.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. 2001. Wilsonianism emerged as a distinct policy philosophy at the end of the First World War. WILSONIAN PHILOSOPHY HELPED CREATE THE U. http://web. Wilsonianism was not only internationalised but also institutionalised. democracy and human rights (or self-determination in general) was equated with the absence of colonialism. South Africa. WILSON¶S IDEAS HELP CONTROL POTENTIAL INTERNATIONAL ANARCHY John Morton Blum.pbs. p. The UN system tangibly paved the way for the process of decolonization in Africa through the UN General Assembly resolutions. Vol.htm. In his view.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. would promote America's long term interests. Rhodes University. Historian. 1998. It was within this philosophical context that he advocated for the need to make the world safe for democracy.africa. Social and Cultural Rights. What Wilson was capable of was as a president. available online at http://www. and legitimacy of power held the key to both international peace and the emancipation of humanity from injustice. Wilson¶s ideas were victorious even if his policies weren¶t. It isn¶t the League of Nations but the importance of thinking through a way to the control the potential anarchy and the relations of states. accessed May 1. In his foreign policy pronouncements vis-a-vis the European colonial powers President Woodrow Wilson advocated for the pursuit of democracy and human rights conceptualized within the context of selfdetermination for the colonized peoples. This.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. Volume 9 Page 61 WILSONIAN THOUGHT HELPED CREATE INTERNATIONAL PEACE 1. the crucial priority was the need to establish people-oriented internal and international democratic institutions that would act as the custodians of democracy and human rights as conceptualised within the general rubric of self-determination. One of the central concerns at the time was how to avoid war and conflict in general. 2002. No.
S. and to accept the rule of private power. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. It hasn't been easy. the one partial exception to the array of horror chambers that Washington has maintained in the region. movement from authoritarianism to democracy tends to reflect a more broadly based consensus than is currently the case in Haiti. trusting that "the United States. domestic and foreign. recognized that the U. Hakim also surely knows the nature of the "consensus" at home. but Administration officials said they persuaded him to accept them. p.wcdebate. despite its rhetoric of democracy.. Hakim observes.N. reported in Foreign Policy that negotiations had stalled because of Washington's insistence on maintaining the power of the security forces. "in most Latin American countries. He took a kind of an American liberalism and essentially tried to create a form of world institutions: self-determination. witness the case of Guatemala. "At first. Z MAGAZINE. November 1994."Aristide's unwillingness to "broaden the political base" has become a kind of mantra. revealed by the belief of half the population that the political system is so rotten that both parties should be disbanded. the head of the OAS/UN mission through December 1993. the phrase conceals a grain of truth. 2. it will be under conditions designed to discredit him and further demoralize those who hoped that democracy might be tolerated in Haiti. France. The Haitian military. accessed May 1.com . Martin observed.pbs. 2002. This was one of the successes of the educational program designed for the "doctrinaire monomaniac. rejecting Aristide's plea to reduce them along lines that had proven successful in Costa Rica. the consensus is "broadly based" in the sense that sustained terror and degradation. Whether Aristide is allowed to return in some fashion is anyone's guess at the time of writing. Aristide has been unwilling to shift power to the "enlightened" sectors of foreign and domestic Civil Society and their security forces. If he is.html. was ambivalent about that power shift" to popular elements represented by Aristide. Volume 9 Page 62 WILSON SUPPORTED AMERICAN COLONIALISM AND IMPERIALISM 1." so the New York Times reported on the eve of the invasion. He still keeps his allegiance to the general population and their organizations -. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. WILSON FAILED BECAUSE HE TRIED TO APPLY AMERICAN PRINCIPLES TO THE WORLD Walter LaFeber. As discussed here in July. PBS documentary. much of it organized right where Hakim speaks. The military and police forces were established during Woodrow Wilson's invasion as an instrument to control the population. or by its traditional master. Consider Peter Hakim. While Aristide was elected by a two-thirds majority. The Europeans knew this. It seems to me that Wilson failed because he tried to apply American principles to the world. unlike the U. Father Aristide resisted having so many former soldiers in the police force. It is intriguing to watch the process at work. open trade. 2001. p. was its friend and protector. And he knows full well what efforts are made to broaden government to include authentic representatives of the overwhelming majority of the population in Latin America. They were proven right.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. on a par with "Wilsonian idealism. Ian Martin.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy.S. The Europeans knew that Wilson¶s principles had problems. and Canada." Like many other mindless propaganda slogans. available online at http://www. Historian. WILSON¶S ³IDEALISM´ CONTINUES TO JUSTIFY HORRIBLE TRAGEDIES IN HAITI Noam Chomsky. we should look carefully at the plans for the security forces and the economy. That is to continue. and the world did not want the American principles. Washington director of the Inter-American dialogue. and have been kept in power by U. 10. well-informed about the hemisphere and far from a ranting ideologue. To evaluate what lies ahead. aid and training for that purpose since. just now attaining the proper broad consensus after many years of education. The generals continued their resistance to a diplomatic settlement. the things that Americans had evolved over threehundred years and incidentally in the process of which we had killed six hundred thousand of each other in the Civil War because it hadn¶t worked too well." It is true enough that from the southern cone to Central America and the Caribbean. As the matter is now rephrased. has taught people to abandon hope for freedom and democracy. np.who could teach some lessons to their kindly tutors about what was meant by "democracy" in days when the term was still taken seriously. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Apple. WILSON¶S PHILOSOPHY INCLUDED RACISM AND WAR-MONGERING Howard Zinn. http://www. As for Woodrow Wilson.org/Sustainers/content/2000-05/07zinn. "For two centuries. one of those Wilson sent to prison. 2002. the American forces who are trying to impose a new order will confront a complex and violent society with no history of democracy. 3. With the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War. Professor Emeritus of History at Boston University. shouldn't we remind his admirers that he insisted on racial segregation in federal buildings. however. followers of General Cedras and the former Tontons Macoute retain their homicidal tendencies. sent an occupation army into Haiti and the Dominican Republic. but his behavior was often very paternalistic. WILSON¶S RHETORIC WAS PRO-DEMOCRATIC. Z MAGAZINE NETWORK DAILY COMMENTARY.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. BUT REPRESSIVE 1.htm. very unsympathetic with and having very little patience for the messiness of democracy. if at times secondary. No. p. PBS documentary. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. 2. The linking of such Wilsonian precepts with foreign policy practice. is that his rhetoric was pro-democratic." he wrote. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. 2002. leaving concerns for democracy and human rights aside. US policy makers consistently followed the dictates of realpolitik in the era of the Cold War. May 7. 2002. np. BUT HIS SOCIAL POLICIES WEREN¶T Victoria Bissell Brown. also occupying an important place in the pantheon of American liberalism.ufl. p. Should we not bring forward as a national hero Emma Goldman.africa.wcdebate.htm.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.com . In the current era.which the homicidal maniacs in the slums have cleverly concealed. the question emerges as to the resonance of such Wilsonian principles in US foreign policy towards Africa. or Helen Keller. has been an altogether different story. http://web. We might understand this as another small contribution to the broader project of revising the history of Western colonialism so as to justify the next phase. WILSON¶S IDEAS JUSTIFY VICIOUS COLONIALISM Noam Chomsky. but it is a novelty to see Napoleon's invasion. 2. accessed May 1. Vol. "Like the French in the 19th century. to say nothing about their weapons" -. Z MAGAZINE. Rhodes University. 2. South Africa. very controlling. who reviewed the lessons of history. the noise of democracy. He wasn¶t always comfortable with the fact that democracy is a noisy and messy business. Backers of President Aristide. Volume 9 Page 63 WILSON¶S SOCIAL IDEAS WEREN¶T NOT PROGRESSIVE. He saw democracy as a tool for creating harmony. WILSONIAN POLICIES AREN¶T IDEALISTIC: JUST THE SAME OLD REALPOLITIK Korwa G. available online at http://www.zmag. Political Studies Department. 2000. p." One takes for granted that the vicious terror and racism of the Wilson administration and its successors will be transmuted to sweet charity as it reaches the educated classes. 1998. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. accessed April 22. Adar. who fearlessly spoke out against the war? 3. p. W. civilized mediation. "Perspective" on what is taking place was provided in the New York Times by R. themes within the rhetoric of American foreign policy toward Africa since the end of World War II. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit. and put anti-war protesters in prison.html. conditions are now in place for the tangible and coherent pursuit of an American foreign policy based on democracy and human rights. 2001. The principles of democracy and human rights have been persistent. Historian AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. np.pbs. brought our country into the hell of World War I. one of the most hideous crimes of an era not known for its gentleness. November 1994. like the Marines who occupied Haiti from 1915 to 1934. 10. accessed April 22. np. "political opponents in Haiti have routinely slaughtered each other. that he bombarded the Mexican coast. His greatest contradiction from my point of view. portrayed in the same light.
but we¶ll get to that below. he was perhaps the living embodiment of that ³rugged individualism´ and ³pulling yourself up by your bootstraps´ stuff that conservatives like to bluster about. and it happened 70 years ago.but there are certainly things we can all now (hopefully) agree on as grievous acts on FDR¶s part.and academic articles from scholars and think tank employees slathering over why the New Deal was unconstitutional. Only recently has there been mass outcry about this mass violation of human rights. Debilitated by a youthful bout with polio. This isn¶t to say that there aren¶t legitimate criticisms of FDR.com . I say with a smirk. The New Deal included massive government spending to create jobs and the creation of the Civilian Conservation Corps.according to Gentile standards. it is certainly remarkable that the enmity exists more than two generations later in this country. though. the majority of it is due to the success of FDR¶s liberal social programs.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Leuchtenburg. the charming and affable voice behind the Fireside Chats. Another element is that most American of traits.wcdebate.but no one accused the far right of being rocket scientists. In fact. (³But I didn¶t know FDR was Jewish!´ you say. Volume 9 Page 64 FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT Of all the former presidents the United States has seen leave office in the past 100 years. Whatever the roots of the anti-FDR sentiment. perhaps none (even including Richard Nixon or Bill Clinton) has inspired such virulent criticism and simultaneously vociferous defense as Franklin Delano Roosevelt. There¶s no way to anger a political opponent than by passing popular and effective legislation. except Werner von Braun. a horrific violation of civil liberties and a betrayal of what would appear to be FDR¶s own principles. you¶ll see conspiracy theorist websites devoted to decrying Roosevelt¶s influence on the country -. All this should tell you that Roosevelt had a monumental impact on American life. anti-Semitism. and was generally beloved by the public. It wasn¶t. That¶s not to say the left doesn¶t have problems with FDR. but the threat of a good example of liberalism is still pretty threatening to these people. agree on this. anyway. a bone thrown to the masses who demanded an alternative to the capitalism that was starving them in droves (in their view). of course -." according to Communist leader Earl Browder. If one can inspire vitriol of this nature from both sides of the American political spectrum. neither the left nor the right felt they had to restrain themselves when criticizing FDR: FDR was "carrying out more thoroughly and brutally than even Hoover the capitalist attack against the masses. William E. popularly known as FDR. at the Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University. Even today. which tells you we have a ways to go yet in this country. Many saw the New Deal as a cop-out. one has doubtless done something right. which proved that private industry isn¶t the only way to create jobs. FDR nevertheless rose to great heights as a statesman. The best example: the massive internment of Japanese Americans in concentration camps. The architect of the New Deal. So what¶s up with the bitterness? Well. Historians. ROOSEVELT¶S IMPORTANCE As I said above. Why the hatred from the right wing? After all. from right to left to centrist. even people that hate Roosevelt acknowledge his importance. He was elected to an unprecedented four terms. Roosevelt isn¶t just the man who pulled the country out of the Great Depression. while American fascist William Dudley Pelley called him the "lowest form of human worm ." (Told you so about the anti-Semitism).not a bad record for a man who left office nearly 70 years ago. What is legitimate depends on what side of the political discourse you come down on.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. FDR is feted by liberals and reviled by conservatives to this day -. the first president to truly take his case directly to the people. said that ³The presidency as we know it today begins with Franklin Delano Roosevelt. It also says something about the limits of mainstream liberalism. He wasn¶t -. He passed important legislation.) We¶ll discuss how that applies in a bit.
The enjoyment of the fruits of scientific progress in a wider and constantly rising standard of living. too. as failing to meet the needs of the public. In his famour ³Four Freedoms´ speech.began with FDR and his legislative ideas.com . FDR recognized this. The right see him as having betrayed capitalism for a more socialist model. The basic things expected by our people of their political and economic systems are simple. sewing clothes for 16 hours a day for pennies a day (due to no child labor laws and no minimum wage). the government had no rhetorical or actual commitment to the average working person. Security for those who need it. The four freedoms which give the famous speech its name are listed here: One would think that this made FDR a pacifist. In order to understand these. This is not quite true. and you have to put your 10-year-old to work in a factory. The inner and abiding straight of our economic and political systems is dependent upon the degree to which they fulfill these expectations. from his leadership in World War II to his economic ideas to his intangible inspirational qualities. This is also why the right sees him as a betrayer of unfettered capitalism -. or at the very least an advocate of disarmament. The preservation of civil liberties for all. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. someone making a union-won family wage who can provide for his or her family and even be a little bit comfortable. These are the simple." But believe it or not. Volume 9 Page 65 There are many reasons for this.where significantly more power rests in the hands of the executive branch -. the basic things that must never be lost sight of in the turmoil and unbelievable complexity of our modern world. This is why the left sees Roosevelt as a betrayer of social revolution. as we will see later. foregoing more revolutionary change for institutional reform. someone had to do something fast to preserve the positive aspects of the old order. ROOSEVELT¶S IDEAS Much is made of Roosevelt¶s social and economic reforms. The ending of special privilege for the few. They are: Equality of opportunity for youth and for others.wcdebate. Jobs for those who can work. ECONOMIC POLICY: THE DEFENDERS The left saw FDR as a sellout who saved capitalism as we know it when it was on the brink of collapse. FDR saw the economic system of the early 20th century as too harsh. Leuchtenberg continued. he included economic rights in that list. If you¶re starving. Unlike most every other president. For there is nothing mysterious about the foundations of a healthy and strong democracy. it is important to understand the ideology behind them. He figured if America as we knew it was to survive intact. FDR laid out exactly to what he thought humans ought to be entitled: Certainly this is no time for any of us to stop thinking about the social and economic problems which are the root cause of the social revolution which is today a supreme factor in the world. some of that sentiment stems from the same root. surpassed only by the legendary Abraham Lincoln. The thing they both agree on is that a fundamental shift occurred during his time in office. He noted ³so powerful an impression did FDR leave on the office that in the most recent survey of historians he was ranked as the second greatest president in our history. Many believe that today¶s so-called ³imperial presidency´ -. Perhaps the best manifestation of these ideas came from the man himself.´ This did not stop some of his contemporaries from referring to FDR as "that megalomaniac cripple in the White House. and perhaps they are right.and perhaps they are right. Before. say. He also thought there were certain fundamental rights to which humans were entitled.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. you¶re a lot more susceptible to someone preaching overthrow of the existing system than.
the Rural Development Administration (formerly the Farmers Home Administration). and labor relations to prevent market failures and offer governmental support of certain businesses in danger of failure. unemployment insurance. the physically handicapped. the conservative economic theorist. the Social Security Administration. the Securities and Exchange Commission. such programs as massive relief programs for the unemployed. industry. historians have taken a positive view of the New Deal´ -. Volume 9 Page 66 In January 1935. The reason was not that Roosevelt was revolutionary economic thinker himself -. who admits that ³In the construction of the American regulatory and welfare state. 3). and the creation of Social Security with its old-age pensions. the National Labor Relations Board.but. the expanded federal regulation of agriculture. Higgs and the like paint FDR as a big-government liberal who created federal agencies for their own sake and no other. wrote William Barber in his book DESIGN WITHOUT DISORDER. and who continued to adopt laissez-faire policies that deepened the depression until 1932. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.Barber says he was "an uncompromising champion of consumer sovereignty" -. and labor relations. pathological anti-communist who saw such things as laws against child labor as a sign of the creeping red tide. Aside from the governmental influx of capital to boost the economy. He also promoted expanded federal regulation of agriculture. finance. from the day he is born.´ He does not say this as a compliment.instead. All of these were first established under Franklin Roosevelt.but he was more a "laboratory affording economists an opportunity to make hands-on contact with the world of events" (p. industry. The FDR years.wcdebate. FDR emphasized his commitment to social security this way: "I see no reason why every child. Social Security. unemployment insurance and aid to families with dependent children. the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. he doesn¶t mention that Kershner was a paranoid. Specifically. the aged poor. and the blind.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Higgs breaks out the organizational chart of the federal government. As evidence. the physically handicapped. but no one heard it from the President before then. and the blind are not beneficent ideas designed to make the functioning of government and economy more humane. FDR is best known for promoting what is known as ³the welfare state. the FDR experimentation resulted in an "Americanized version of Keynesian macroeconomics" which relied on government stimulation of private industry. Cradle to the grave . he was a man with certain values (expressed above) that was willing to listen to professional economists about how to achieve those values. these policies are a power grab by liberal economists! Of course. It¶s also pretty interesting how he skips over free-market conservative Herbert Hoover. Nope. who was president when the Great Depression started in 1929. pensions for the elderly. the Federal Housing Administration. were "a watershed in economic policy and in economic thinking" (p.from the cradle to the grave they ought to be in a social insurance system. the Rural Utility Service (formerly the Rural Electrification Administration). Higgs writes. and income supplements for dependent children in single-parent families. the establishment of a legal minimum wage. there are lots of people that won¶t let 70-year-old policies go. no one looms larger than FDR. to him.com . He explained his rationale in the Four Freedoms speech: ECONOMIC POLICY: THE CRITICS As I mentioned. when voters unceremoniously dumped him in favor of FDR. the establishment of a legal minimum wage. and was arguing in the 1950s and 1960s along with Joe McCarthy that Communists were infiltrating the American government. 2). One of them is Robert Higgs. Sure. the Farm Credit Administration.´ This imprecise term covers a variety of reforms that constitute a safety net for the poor and otherwise disadvantaged. the aged poor. Things we take for granted today include: relief programs for the unemployed. finance." You may have heard this ³cradle to the grave´ rhetoric before. He had his own ideas -. shouldn't be a member of the social security system. He points to such agencies as the Export-Import Bank. ³with few exceptions.
his wife ran off with a traveling salesman. This nonsense about Roosevelt and about Jews continues to this day among the racist right. ³Each in its own fashion. being a victim of race-baiting himself. including Henry Ford. financing. To his credit. No similar policies were enacted for Americans of German or Italian descent. One would think. but virtually alone among prominent Americans (many of whom. say. ³interferes with the effective operation of the free market. only sometimes. by the way. United States. vanden Heuvel has noted.)´ Sometimes. so even (gasp!) the middle class and below can attend universities. that old people with no family can rely on Social Security checks rather than cat food in order to eat? WAR POLICY It¶s unfortunate that we have to sum up FDR¶s World War II actions in so short a space.´ playing to racist notions of wealthy Jews running the government. The legal precedent that justified this vile act. No act of espionage by any Japanese American was ever proven. regulating.000 loyal Americans of Japanese descent to prison camps for years. narratives end with perfect poetic justice.com . Famously. it seems the argument here is that NO federal agency is EVER justified in helping to stimulate the economy or to ameliorate the effects on a market collapse on average people. (Which he was there. Charming. And what about all those that got their jollies in hating Roosevelt? My favorite story is this one. and didn¶t think Roosevelt should be sticking his nose in Hitler¶s business as the German leader committed the most horrific act of the 20th century. was upheld by the Supreme Court and stands a valid legal precedent to this day.´ and called his policies ³the Jew Deal. that students have their college loans federally provided. and one can certainly debate about the impacts of some of them. Leuchtenberg: ³In Kansas a man went down into his cyclone cellar and announced he would not emerge until Roosevelt was out of office. insuring. vanden Heuvel argues. isn¶t it a good rather than a bad thing that farmers get subsidies that help family farms stay afloat. Their property was seized. this much is undeniable. Korematsu v. Volume 9 Page 67 and the Tennessee Valley Authority as ³the offspring of the New Deal´ and argues that they are pernicious in their effects.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. FDR signed Executive Order 9066. the ONLY) political leader to stand against Hitler from the very beginning. which consigned over 100. too. this was not the case. but that¶s the way it is. who didn¶t see the murder of European Jews as any of out business. Even if you¶ve got a problem with. including Holocaust deniers like David Irving and his ilk. though the U. Considering that this made him alone not only among the political leaders of the world. The vast majority of it was never returned. it certainly serves as a major mark in Roosevelt¶s favor. told by William E. each renders the economy less productive than it could be-and all in the service of one special interest or another. The nutty right spread rumors that Roosevelt¶s real name was ³Rosenfeld. who praised Hitler and continued to trade with Nazi Germany AFTER World War II began). William J.´ Regardless of how one feels about each of these individual agencies.wcdebate. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. the Export-Import Bank. was at war with them. It also helps to explain the hatred of FDR by the anti-Semitic right. FDR would have seen the folly in his most shameful act of the war. and thereby diverting resources from the uses most valued by consumers.S. By subsidizing.´ he writes. Sadly. FDR was the first (and. Love him or give in to insane and illogical hatred of him. CONCLUSION FDR might be the most important president of the 20th century.
Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. Volume 9 Page 68 BIBLIOGRAPHY Burns.independent.htm.htm. http://www. 1935.html. 2002. Boston: South End Press. accessed May 02.org/wgbh/amex/presidents/nf/resource/fdr/primdocs/socsecspeech.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. William E.shtml.NET BOOK REVIEW . Department of History. Namorato. accessed May 5.net/bookreviews/library/0024. 1985. Robert. EH. THE FREEMAN. July 1997. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Higgs. THE JUGGLER: FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT AS WARTIME STATESMAN.´ Jan.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. FDR: THE NEW DEAL YEARS 1933-1937. http://newdeal.washingtonpost. New York: Random House Publishing. Warren F. Michael V. Leuchtenburg. DETERRING DEMOCRACY..wcdebate. Roosevelt. Jr. Franklin Delano. 1979. University of Mississippi . Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. ³A Message to the Congress on Social Security.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs.feri.ECONOMIC HISTORY. Franklin Delano. Schlesinger. September 1998. 1991. 1986. Mead and Company Publishers. Robert.org/chat/chat03.com . 2002. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. Kimball. 1932-1945. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. ROOSEVELT AND AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY. 17. FRANKLIN D. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. New York: Dodd. ³Purposes and Foundations of the Recovery (Fireside Chat)´. July 24. THE COMING OF THE NEW DEAL.eh. http://www. Oxford University Press.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears. 1933. Hugh Gregory. 2002. 1970. 2002. accessed May 10. Chomsky. FDR'S SPLENDID DECEPTION. accessed May 1. Gallagher.pbs.1987. Roosevelt. accessed May 9. James MacGregor. Dallek. Arthur M. Davis. 1959. Kenneth S.html. http://www. ROOSEVELT: THE SOLDIER OF FREEDOM. 2002. http://www. 1992. Noam.
EH.1987. IN JUST A FEW WEEKS. "but anywhere seems better than where they have been. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. p. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. Leuchtenburg. FDR WAS KEY TO SOCIAL JUSTICE FOR THE DISADVANTAGED William E.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Overnight. Roosevelt himself.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears." noted one business journal. the spirit of the country seemed markedly changed. Roosevelt listened to and responded to their suggestions.NET BOOK REVIEW . was a "laboratory affording economists an opportunity to make hands-on contact with the world of events" (p. Gone was the torpor of the Hoover years. np. FDR REPRESENTED A WATERSHED IN ECONOMIC THINKING Michael V. FDR TRANSFORMED THE NATION¶S ECONOMIC OUTLOOK William E. everyone was joyous.. Starting in the spectacular First Hundred Days. Similar to his earlier study.Happy days are here again. Leuchtenburg.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3." Again and again. where trading resumed on March 15.htm..washingtonpost. Washington seemed like Cambridge on the morning of the Harvard-Yale game: "All the shops were on display. the end result was an "Americanized version of Keynesian macroeconomics" which became part and parcel of governmental policy by the end of the 1930s. responding to left-wing critiques of FDR. and in the New Deal that continued throughout.shtml. years after it had become a fixture in other lands. observers resorted to the imagery of darkness and light to characterize the transformation from the Stygian gloom of Hoover's final winter to the bright springtime of the First Hundred Days.wcdebate." On the New York Curb Exchange. http://www. http://www.htm. In this sense. Only a few weeks after Roosevelt took office. Roosevelt rested his legislative program on the assumption that government should actively seek social justice for all Americans. In the case of Franklin Roosevelt.just where they are going. too.1987. not least those who are disadvantaged. the Rooseveltian years were "a watershed in economic policy and in economic thinking" (p. July 1997. He provided those with more learning and understanding of economic matters an opportunity to develop their ideas. Department of History. accessed May 1. Roosevelt's Washington.. the stock ticker ended the day with the merry message: "Goodnite. the political paralysis. 2002.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears. It was not just for the day as it was in Cambridge.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. in Barber's opinion.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Designs Within Disorder concentrates on what economists were saying during the New Deal.. 2. was "an uncompromising champion of consumer sovereignty" (p. accessed May 5. Roosevelt brought the Welfare State to America. p. After much experimentation. p. how Franklin D. The historian James T.net/bookreviews/library/0024. 1). Barber believes that professional economists had a president who was willing to listen to them and who was a "consumer" of what they had to offer. Patterson. University of Mississippi . np. the notion of the State got little attention in America before FDR. crowds moved excitedly.ECONOMIC HISTORY. 2002. 2). accessed May 5." 3. has written: ³Roosevelt was no hard-eyed merchandiser. in the offices there is a feeling of hope reborn.eh. There was something in the air that had not been there before. and the ultimate impact these economic thinkers had on long-term federal economic policy.com . his opportunism was grounded in social concern and conscience. without which the New Deal would indeed have been mindless and devious. Volume 9 Page 69 FDR¶S ECONOMIC LEGACY IS CRUCIALLY IMPORTANT 1. np. gone.washingtonpost. 3). Namorato. 2002. one eyewitness later remembered. . in short. http://www. "The people aren't sure. Although not a great economic thinker. In the homes on the streets. Although European theorists had been talking about der Staat for decades.
FDR HELPED PROMOTE SOVEREIGNTY FOR COLONIZED PEOPLES Korwa G. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. p. http://www. Wilson's intellectual heir. Political Studies Department. FDR¶S LEGACY IS THE ABOLITION OF INTERNATIONAL ISOLATIONISM William E. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. Wilsonian precepts resonated clearly in the messsage of the Atlantic Charter which. it had refused to participate in either the League of Nations or the World Court.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. it is framed with perfect futility.africa. South Africa. Never before had a president been given the opportunity to lead his people to a triumph of these global dimensions. late in his second term. 1998. 2. and it seems improbable. Leuchtenburg. accessed April 22.washingtonpost. Roosevelt made full use of his executive power in recognizing the USSR. No. a position he was said to prefer to all others. http://www.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. the United States was firmly committed to isolationism. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit. can now escape from the compelling fact that if it is not framed with reference to the world. Roosevelt had wide latitude to demonstrate his executive leadership by guiding the country through a victorious struggle against the fascist powers. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY.htm. Roosevelt. 2002. So far had America come by the end of the Roosevelt era that Henry Stimson was to say that the United States could never again "be an island to herself. FDR¶S INTERNATIONAL ROLE WAS FIRST-RATE William E. "His role in insuring the downfall of Adolf Hitler is alone enough to earn him a respected place in history.htm. Roosevelt not only supervised the mobilization of men and resources against the Axis but also made a significant contribution to fashioning a postwar settlement and creating the structure of the United Nations.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3.com .com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears. 2002. 2. Volume 9 Page 70 FDR¶S OVERSEAS POLICY WAS EXCELLENT 1. "He overcame both his own and the nation's isolationist inclination to bring a united America into the coalition that saved the world from the danger of totalitarian conquest. although promulgated by Franklin D. providing aid to the Allies and leading the nation toward active involvement in World War II. given the nature of nuclear weapons. that such a circumstance will ever arise again. Roosevelt's high place rests also on his role in leading the nation to accept the far-ranging responsibilities of world power. np. p. manifestly indicated US dissatisfaction with the lack of sovereignty for colonised peoples. Rhodes University.1987. accessed May 5.wcdebate. p.1987." Robert Divine has concluded.ufl. accessed May 5. Vol. President Wilson's global campaign as the champion for the silent majority also set the stage for a United States democracy and human rights foreign policy in the twentieth century. in any sector of our national life." 3. http://web. 2002. When he took office.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears. np.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. Leuchtenburg. As a wartime president. and. As commander-in-chief. Adar.washingtonpost." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 2. crafting the Good Neighbor Policy.htm. Denied by Congress the discretionary authority he sought. np. No private program and no public policy.
But however significant his legacies. and direct government participation in productive activities.independent. never recovered enough to restore the high levels of production and employment enjoyed in the 1920s.independent.html. 2. np. By wheeling and dealing. 2002. Despite its economic illogic and incoherence. the root cause of the prevailing malaise was the continuation of the depression. accessed May 02. With its bewildering. The irony is that even if Roosevelt did help to lift the spirits of the American people in the depths of the depression-an uplift for which no compelling documentation exists-this achievement only led the public to labor under an illusion. especially during the congressional sessions of 1933 and 1935. 2002. np. and hence overall private economic activity.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs. THE FREEMAN. and hostility among businessmen and investors that private investment.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. p.com . Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Roosevelt deserves no reverence. THE FREEMAN. In this madness. FDR and Congress. np. accessed May 02. he prolonged the depression and fastened on the country a bloated. Coming into power at a time of widespread destitution. stop bureaucratic centralization in Washington²the depression might have passed into history before his next campaign in 1936. by taxing and spending. The government¶s own greatly enlarged economic activity did not compensate for the private shortfall. In the face of the interventionist onslaught.´ and eventually ³no political boss could compete with him in any county in America in the distribution of money and jobs.html.html. p. But instead. 2002. Volume 9 Page 71 THE NEW DEAL WAS BAD FOR THE ECONOMY. he was an exceptionally resourceful political opportunist who harnessed the extraordinary potential for personal and party aggrandizement inherent in a uniquely troubled and turbulent period of American history. September 1998. accessed May 02. embraced interventionist policies on a wide front. ROOSEVELT¶S LEGACY IS TO TRAMPLE ON LIBERTY Robert Higgs. PROLONGING THE DEPRESSION 1. uncertainty. high unemployment. by ranting against "economic royalists" and posturing as the friend of the common man. In fact. the New Deal did prolong the depression. intrusive government that has been trampling on the people¶s liberties ever since. THE NEW DEAL PROLONGED THE DEPRESSION Robert Higgs. p.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs. the New Dealers had a method. Between 1929 and 1939 the economy sacrificed an entire decade of normal economic growth. balance the budget. fear. After all.2 Without capital accumulation. which would have increased the national income 30 to 40 percent. Rather. http://www.´ 4. incoherent mass of new expenditures. September 1998. 2002. FDR¶S POLICIES ACTUALLY PROLONGED THE DEPRESSION Robert Higgs.independent. the New Deal served as a massive vote-buying scheme. taxes. 3. But for all his undeniable political prowess. accessed May 02. http://www. http://www. THE NEW DEAL WAS A MASSIVE VOTE-BUYING SCHEME Robert Higgs. regulations. ³it was always easy to interest him in a plan which would confer some special benefit upon some special class in the population in exchange for their votes. he got himself elected time after time. as many observers claimed at the time. Flynn said of FDR. p. THE FREEMAN.1 billion. and business failures. the Roosevelt administration recognized that the president and his Democratic allies in Congress could appropriate unprecedented sums of money and channel them into the hands of recipients who would respond by giving political support to their benefactors. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. http://www. As John T. September 1998. THE FREEMAN. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. maintain a sound currency.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs.wcdebate.html. September 1998. He was no hero. the American economy between 1930 and 1940 failed to add anything to its capital stock: net private investment for that eleven-year period totaled minus $3. Had Roosevelt only kept his inoffensive campaign promises of 1932²cut federal spending. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review.independent. no economy can grow. the New Deal created so much confusion. np. subsidies. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review.
Department of History. 3.splendidly eternal for romance." Try as they might.owing to his engraving upon the public consciousness the sense that men were indeed equal. In the end.html." But that is only the carping of trivial minds.. through Roosevelt and Truman.net/bookreviews/library/0024. 2. Barber takes his argument through the later 1930s." Roosevelt and Lucy Mercer "were persons even grander on the domestic stage than they would end up being on the cosmic one. individuals like Galbraith left the New Deal.NET BOOK REVIEW .zmag.. DIDN¶T ADDRESS INEQUITY Noam Chomsky. Namorato.." His "enormous bulk" stands between us "and all prior history. [We are] as homesick as Alsop for a time when America was ruled by gentlemen and ladies.NET BOOK REVIEW ." He left us with "nostalgia" that is "aching.." so much so that "ten years went by before a Commerce Department economist grew curious about the distribution of income and was surprised to discover that its inequality had persisted almost unchanged from Hoover." etc.org/chomsky/dd/dd-c02s03. DETERRING DEMOCRACY. Namorato. Chapter 2. a secret love affair. Keynesianism took hold after 1945 only after it had infiltrated the universities (p. and the immediate post-war era. Department of History..a wasteland. this demeanor as the aristocratic style. 2002. indeed revere. EH. 2002. University of Mississippi .endearingly exalted. Barber credits Roosevelt with so much in terms of providing economists with an opportunity to influence policy. including many of the poor and working class. Galbraith in the Office of Price Administration helped to mobilize America's wartime economy. accessed May 1. how the president barely tolerated Thurman Arnold and his anti-trust movement.ECONOMIC HISTORY. Somehow. Finally. Still.shtml.. July 1997. FDR. 1992. 2002. DESPITE ESTABLISHMENT HISTORIANS. Franklin Delano Roosevelt attained similar heights among large sectors of the population.. The aura of sanctity remains among intellectuals who worship at the shrine. EH. and how people like John K. Reviewing a laudatory book on FDR by Joseph Alsop in the New York Review of Books. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. in his last chapters. Those of us who were born to circumstances less assured tend to think of..... Barber details how Hopkins brought in young academics sympathetic to this approach.shtml. Roosevelt took such complete command that he "left social inquiry.. University of Mississippi .. who praised "the encomium that Murray Kempton justly bestowed on Roosevelt. In fact.ECONOMIC HISTORY.." whatever the record of economic reform and civil rights may show.com . but the president himself is seldom even mentioned.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. left-liberal social critic Murray Kempton describes the "majesty" of Roosevelt's smile as "he beamed from those great heights that lie beyond the taking of offense. Barber concluded that the Full Employment Act was more of a victory for the opponents of the Keynesian approach than one would have suspected. by Noel Annan. The important fact is that Roosevelt brought us "comfort. however. THE ECONOMISTS SHOULD GET THE CREDIT. Seeing Harry Hopkins' appointment as Secretary of Commerce as a turning point towards official acceptance of Keynesianism.. accessed May 1.wcdebate.. no less analyzed in terms of his own thinking on what these economists were telling him and his close advisors. 171).eh. http://www. "in the grandest style. etc. World War II." and met the great crisis in their lives. who placed their trust in him.." "That Roosevelt was the democrat that great gentlemen always are in no way abated his grandeur. FDR SHOULD NOT GET CREDIT FOR KEYNESIAN ECONOMICS Michael V.eh. the spinners of fantasy could not even approach such heights in the Reagan era. Roosevelt is lost amidst the intellectual environment that Barber has created. NOT FDR Michael V. accessed May 1. There was one published reaction. http://www.net/bookreviews/library/0024. Volume 9 Page 72 FDR¶S ECONOMIC POLICIES WERE NOT TRULY EFFECTIVE 1. http://www. July 1997. Finally. [His blend of elegance with compassion] adds up to true majesty.
he was best known for his 16-year marriage to actress Jane Fonda. He was elected to the state Assembly in 1982 -. they participated in many controversial events demonstrating their opposition to the Vietnam War. Hayden continued with his activism. Students for a Democratic Society. So. ³he was regarded warily as an invader and outlaw by his fellow lawmakers. the 7th U. Born December 11.and when he was elected as a state assemblyman 20 years ago. his life. he was a prominent defendant in the Chicago Seven trial.it is possible to sum up the academic debate surrounding them.Hayden was convicted of intent to riot at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. he has lived in Los Angeles since 1971. The other defendants. Hayden decided to run for elected office. TOM HAYDEN¶S LIFE Regardless of your opinion of Hayden as an activist or as a person. he was arrested as a member of the "Chicago Seven" for inciting a riot at the Democratic National Convention. It wouldn¶t hurt to have a gander at what they have continued to do in the ensuing decades. While it¶s certainly impossible to sum up either the SDS or Hayden in just a few pages -.´ The freedom riders were a group of mostly white students from the north who traveled to the American south in efforts to assist racial desegregation the South. even those ³intent to riot´ convictions were overturned by a federal appeals court. Along with four other defendants -. Later. let¶s examine one of the most fascinating periods of recent American history.wcdebate."´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Hayden -. District Judge Julius Hoffman.committed to the Socratic and Platonic tradition of logic and rhetoric -. the Los Angeles Times reported. wrote the national correspondent of The Atlantic. As his own website (www.tomhayden. There are those who consider them to be heroic protestors.the issues they tackled ranged from the war in Vietnam to racial injustice to anti-nuclear politics to American economic inequity -. there are two camps that feel strongly as regards Hayden and SDS. some of whom even tried to expel him from the Legislature as a "traitor.Jerry Rubin. Who is right? Well.S. you¶ve gotta admit he¶s led a pretty interesting life so far. Together. Basically. Nicholas Lemann. One of those movements.S. in order to answer that question. Rennie Davis and David Dellinger -. Abbie Hoffman. were acquitted of additional conspiracy charges. "Tom Hayden changed America". challengers of the status quo and defenders of the downtrodden -. Far from it: Hayden welcomes the dialogue. his ideas. anti-American louts who have frayed the fabric of the blue jeans of American life. and whether some of the political movements of the time were benevolent or detrimental. That court based its decision on procedural errors by U.com) admits. who were not convicted. As some former radicals did. we¶ll have to take a look at Hayden. And unlike me.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Circuit Court of Appeals. Undaunted by his legal trouble.com . In 1968. All the defendants.does not shy away from nor roll his eyes at debates on the impact of the 1960s. though. 1939. with that said. and what he and those inspired by him did during the 1960s. which he sees as necessary for a rich and stable intellectual culture. In 1969 and 1970.and those who consider them to be troublemaking. He later served as a ³freedom rider. including Froines and Weiner. Volume 9 Page 73 TOM HAYDEN It says a great deal about American academic thinking that we are still arguing about the 1960s. were John Froines and Lee Weiner. had a charismatic and thoughtful leader named Tom Hayden who has continued (as an activist and as a California state legislator) to work for change in the American political arena.
politician. He has an infant son with Williams. While he didn¶t pass much legislation -. At least one prominent political figure. (Look it up. author. IDEAS OF TOM HAYDEN Perhaps the most important item to read in studying the ideology of this and other radical organizations is the Port Huron Statement. too. wrote Sacramento Bee columnist Dan Walters.he sponsored numerous bills. he was given kudos by the Sierra Club and the California League Conservation Voters for backing protection of endangered species and proenvironment record.remember. While a state legislator. He backed pro-labor. Hardly a single issue activist or politician. As one might expect given the racial intolerance prevalent in America at the time -. Hayden never decried the existence of the political system as such. Hayden recognized that power could not truly be challenged without alliances between various progressive groups. as he was elected to the state Senate in 1992. fought for reform of the K-12 educational system. hailed by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference for his civil rights achievements.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.his radical views often polarized even friendly legislators -. and more. Volume 9 Page 74 This didn¶t stop him.´ using rhetoric reminiscent of early American rabble rousers such as Thomas Paine. That includes student groups. Hayden was called the "legislator of the year" by the American Lung Association for taking on the tobacco industry. husband of actress. He is currently married to the actress Barbara Williams.com . again husband of different actress. he was "the conscience of the (California State) Senate". Hayden wrote the Port Huron Statement while a student at The University of Wisconsin. the founding document of Students for a Democratic Society. What kind of action? Well. and on and on.not necessarily the hard Marxist leaning of various communist groups. anti-sweatshop legislation -which you might expect of a former 1960s radical. and other activists of various stripes. Recognizing that this would require revolutionary change. he credits that issue as one of the factors inspiring the SDS movement: SDS moved from a mere problem identification mode to a serious institutional analysis of American politics. the culmination of seven consecutive electoral victories representing the west side of Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. the SDS had socialist leanings -. but a general desire for leveling the economic playing field in the United States. Activist. his tenure as a state senator was not the first time Hayden had influenced legislative agendas. Even in his youth. has said that Hayden ³created the blueprint for the Great Society programs´ of Lyndon Baines Johnson during his tenure as an advocate for the working poor. Until he was forced out by term limits. Unlike many of his fellow radicals. convict with his sentence overturned.wcdebate. even when he wasn¶t married to Barbarella. African-Americans and Latinos and Holocaust survivors. convict. of course. Hayden also has two grown children from his earlier marriage to Fonda. Then statement encouraged other students to research and understand the world at large. workers. lots of different kinds. activist. former husband of actress. kids). presidential assistant Richard Goodwin. But mainstream groups honored him. Hayden fought against university tuition increases. to take action. Indeed. It¶s been a tumultuous ride for Hayden. Like many of the so-called New Left groups of the time. and decried the prominence of special interest waste and abuse of power in California politics.Hayden decried the injustice of the discrepancy in material wealth and economic opportunity between the white and black communities. The conclusion of the Port Huron Declaration reads: Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. including legislation on behalf of women. the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was still two years away -. which was written by Tom Hayden in 1962. the SDS got its name from a desire for what they termed ³true democracy. praised by the Jewish National Fund for his support of Israel. In fact.
Volume 9 Page 75 While Hayden has never focused on one issue to the exclusion of all others. When he was interviewed by the journal NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. Bloom continuously asserts that higher education has failed democracy. symbolized by the presence of the Bomb. insists Hayden to this day. that Hayden and SDS defended a multidisciplinary activism that recognized the need for progressive groups of all stripes to come together toward overlapping goals. Just because it isn¶t your morality. as long as we have a US Constitution there will be the possibility of strikes or Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Hayden expanded upon this defense of his philosophy: NPQ: In Bloom's mind. HAYDEN: Bloom has it backwards.or contaminated by. there was tension in this: many labor groups distrust environmentalists because of perceived inattention to the cause of workers. It's an institution that is a full participant in our democratic society. and millions of abstract "others" we knew more directly because of our common peril. Pursuit of knowledge is then eclipsed by the needs of the moment and the opinion of the masses. He responds to the charges of people such as Allan Bloom and David Horowitz thusly: What Bloom and others see as moral relativism -. improving cultural literacy or improving the quality of life. Rather than moral relativism. The 1960s radicals were not defending Vietnamese (or Chinese.Hayden sees as merely a shift in morals. on the cowardly silence of the intellectual community in the 50s. and some of the charges they have levied against Hayden.they argue that the student movements essentially defended the right of societies to choose communism -. then.´ It seems. Naturally. when the current preoccupations of a democratic society become the primary concerns of the university. might die at any time. it is certainly possible to decide based on his activist priorities which are the most important to him.they were defending their own brand of moral claims. or Soviet) communism -.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.. pacifism and the avoidance of war were a pressing concern for Hayden: as he wrote then. of course. Higher education is fully integrated into .wcdebate. ³the enclosing fact of the Cold War. one would hardly be given to support any of the prevailing agendas that Hayden or his allies would.com . even people that consider themselves ³progressive´ on one or more issues might not be given to the kind of movement-building that SDS advocated. We live in an economy and a culture where ideas are not separate from improving productivity. on the failure of the university to stand as a critical institution representing inquiry. higher education is not separate from democracy. the Vietnam War provided his activist awakening. the SDS. if one is not progressive at all. Especially because of the nuclear age. It is not Plato's cave. on the remoteness of the curriculum from the real dilemmas of life.of turning a blind eye to oppression if it suits their political ends. Like many of his vintage. Hayden might say. that the United States should not engage in what the SDS felt were immoral activities. As a result. This man who makes so much of being able to distinguish between shadow and substance in Plato's cave becomes blind to the fact that the anguished cry of the students in the 60s was not so very different from Bloom's own lament. the university loses the critical detachment necessary to preserve and pass on the core values of Western civilization. Thus. Let us turn to the latter group now. Quite the opposite is true. and our friends.. and indeed the 1960s in its entirety. The editorials I wrote from 1957 to 1961 in the Michigan Daily were based on Cardinal Newman's concept of the university as a community of scholars. doesn¶t mean there isn¶t a moral system behind it. And. for example. THE CHARGE OF MORAL AND CULTURAL RELATIVISM Conservative academics interesting in revising history have tried to give a black eye to the 1960s student movements by accusing them of moral and cultural relativism -. but it seems difficult for him to comprehend that. brought awareness that we ourselves. at least in the United States. this was actually the mirror image of the moral absolutism that Bloom and his allies defended. depending on how we view it American society.
Hayden told the group: "Anything that intensifies our resistance«is in the service of humanity. they might be criticized for methods -.is not something we will concern ourselves with here.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. The Weathermen are setting the terms for all of us now. others maintain that Hayden and SDS were supporters of violent groups. Nevertheless. Many say that the riot was something the SDS planned all along -. it is worth reporting and considering that Hayden and SDS were certainly on the edge of the debate.such as a willingness to riot at the Democratic National Convention. CONCLUSION -. it¶s this: he isn't afraid to change with the times. Volume 9 Page 76 other disruptive activity any time the component members of an institution are treated like numbers or feel their point of view is not represented. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. He is unafraid of a vigorous and public discussion on policies.and the vexing corollarly question.com . who refused to rule out violence as a political tactic. However.not unlike many members of the debate community. The question of whether violence is justified as a political tactic -.HAYDEN AND DEBATE If there is one thing that we can say about Tom Hayden. whether it is justified in an advanced democracy which generally protects freedom of speech -.wcdebate. Critics cite Hayden¶s speech to the radical group The Weathermen. that was the basis of the government¶s case against the Chicago Seven. According to observers." This would seem to be at least a tacit endorsement of the group¶s tactics. even if they weren¶t violent themselves. philosophies and ideas -. at the Weathermen¶s Days of Rage gathering. Because of the overturned conviction.certainly. OTHER CRITICISMS OF HAYDEN Even if individuals agreed with the goals of the SDS. this is far from undisputed.
activist and former California state legislator. Radosh. 2002.com/columnists/radosh/2001/rr11-27-01. Port Huron Statement. December 5. New York: Random House. 20. 1966 (pb New York: Signet. 1972. FRONTPAGE MAGAZINE. activist.org/taemj97s. Tom. May/June 1997. Volume 4. Horowitz. Tom Hayden. David. November 27. MISSION TO HANOI.html. 1966. 1988. Rinehart and Winston. 2002. Hayden. THE LOVE OF POSSESSION IS A DISEASE WITH THEM. Herbert with prefaces by Staughton Lynd and Tom Hayden. http://www.htm. New York: New American Library. http://www. Staughton & Thomas Hayden. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. REUNION: A MEMOIR.frontpagemag. B1.msu. New York: International Publishers. p. accessed May 2.theamericanenterprise. Hayden. 1962. Tom. 1967).htm. former radical. Fall 1987. Tom. WASHINGTON POST. Chicago: Holt.com . Ronald. 2002. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. Tom. #4.edu/~hst306/documents/huron.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Lynd.matrix. author of Commies: A Journey Through the Old Left. accessed May 2.wcdebate. Volume 9 Page 77 BIBLIOGRAPHY Aptheker. accessed May 1. 2001. The Other Side. http://coursesa. p. activist and former California state legislator. the New Left and the Leftover Left. Hayden. 1999. Hayden.
wcdebate. AND HAVE MORE IMPACT Tom Hayden. is the pepper spray helping you relive your youth? My response was that it beats taking Viagra. yet the message of our society is that there is no viable alternative to the present. np. calling on us not to be "good Germans. the bureaucracies. B1. being gassed myself.com .the vast majority of our people regard the temporary equilibriums of our society and world as eternally-functional parts. we hope. p. THE 1960s WERE THE UNIVERSTIES¶ FINEST MOMENT Tom Hayden. THE NEW MOVEMENTS ARE LIKE THE NEW BOSTON TEA PARTY Tom Hayden. 1999. hundreds of Americans per week were coming home in body bags. Our world is guided by the sense that we may be the last generation in the experiment with living.edu/~hst306/documents/huron. Port Huron Statement. http://coursesa. environmental protection and human rights? Are American democratic values and middle-class interests secondary to those of transnational corporations? As a grass-roots movement seeking the overthrow of what it sees as an oppressive system. activist. I have to say I am glad to have lived long enough to see a new generation of rebels accomplish something bigger here in 1999 than we accomplished in Chicago in 1968 with our disruptive protests at the Democratic National Convention. Based on five days of joining in protests. 2002. They are the exact opposite of Nazi storm troopers.html. on the contrary. and a commitment to social experimentation with them.msu. and to this day I am astounded by the fact that of nearly 1000 academic articles written for leading political science journals during the 60s.. December 5. 4. But we are a minority . that something can be done to change circumstances in the school. do they not as well produce a yearning to believe there is an alternative to the present. sitting on cold pavements and hard floors. WASHINGTON POST. others today. #4." That's what Bloom doesn't understand. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. p. The search for truly democratic alternatives to the present. They were.. B1. 2. activist. Volume 4. On the contrary. 1962. at once the spark and engine of change. marching. paralyzing policy discussion. np. activist. Fall 1987. accessed May 2. Do the Clinton administration's investor-based trade priorities benefit America's interest in highwage jobs. accessed May 2. and those who did so should be blessed in our history.matrix. In this is perhaps the outstanding paradox: we ourselves are imbued with urgency. THE NEW MOVEMENTS CONTINUE THE LEGACY OF THE 60s. only one was about Viet Nam. WASHINGTON POST. http://coursesa. activist and former California state legislator. the workplaces.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.edu/~hst306/documents/huron. activist. 1962. WE MUST CONTINUE TO EXPERIMENT TOWARD TRUE DEMOCRACY Tom Hayden.matrix. My serious take on the question might surprise you. The American political system is not the democratic model of which its glorifiers speak. p. not that of their opponents. 2002. the government? It is to this latter yearning. p. Seattle '99 was more like the Boston Tea Party than the days of rage we knew in the late '60s. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 20. is a worthy and fulfilling human enterprise. We were spending $30 billion a year on death and destruction. For the first time in memory. THE AMERICAN POLITICAL SYSTEM ISN¶T REALLY DEMOCRACY Tom Hayden. 3. the patriotism of the corporate globalizers is in question. 5.but might it not better be called a glaze above deeply-felt anxieties about their role in the new world? And if these anxieties produce a developed influence to human affairs. 1999. December 5. Port Huron Statement. and consolidating the irresponsible power of military and business interests. In actuality it frustrates democracy by confusing the individual citizen.html.. one can argue that the finest moment of the university was when students and faculty stopped the university's business-as-usual during a time of national crisis. Professors at Columbia and Berkeley were among the intellectual architects of that war. one which moves us and. One reporter even asked me. It was honorable to protest that situation. Some would have us believe that Americans feel contentment amidst prosperity . p.msu. that we direct our present appeal. Comparisons between the World Trade Organization protests here and the protest movements of the '60s became a media micro-industry last week. Volume 9 Page 78 THE 1960s ACTIVISM OF SDS AND HAYDEN WAS POSITIVE 1.
Volume 9 Page 79 HAYDEN¶S CRITICS ARE WRONG ± THE 60s WEREN¶T ABOUT MORAL RELATIVISM 1. 20. p. That omission is another reason why his book is so baffling. thinking stopped with the moral indignation over the Vietnam War and racial injustice.com . 2. p. Volume 4.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. If there has been an erosion of general education. #4. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. and they say those things loudly on the edge of the Oakland ghetto. the president of Yale. and Bloom knows that. She was deploying a network of informants who notified parents of the white girls who were seen socializing with black men in the student union. NPQ: Bloom argues that. the 60s introduced morality into an amoral society and a materialistic university. let's also not forget the 60s are over. At my university. #4. Volume 4. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. #4. Furthermore. HAYDEN¶S CRITICS HAVE MANY MORE MORAL PROBLEMS THAN HE DOES Tom Hayden. 3. how should we regard the official claim that the US was in Viet Nam to stop Chinese communism? Speaking of moral relativism. Fall 1987. One week after the Kent State shootings. Does Bloom have a point? Hayden: Of course he has a point. p. He complains that students become economics majors prematurely and they all go to university with fantasies about becoming millionaires.the legitimacy of questioning everything . That was the University of Michigan in 1960. Was that a worthy undertaking by a university leader? Absolutely.then of course one of the occasional consequences will be rebellious behavior. Kingman Brewster. They spent an entire week involved in the process of lobbying the government to terminate the war. but it's confused because the cloistered community of scholars Bloom describes has not existed for many centuries. but it can't improve on a black admission rate of 5% or 6%. To view the 60s as mindless because many of us followed C. Wright Mills and Albert Camus rather than Allan Bloom's prescriptions is wrong. the most traditional US Secretary of Education we have ever had. led one thousand Yale students to Washington in protest. Fall 1987. If we accept Bloom's Platonic model . Did that damage Yale? Did it morally and intellectually cripple the thousand students who participated? I think not. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. and it's not anti-intellectual to revolt against those attitudes. #4. ALLAN BLOOM¶S FOCUS IS CONFUSED: HE SELECTS THE WRONG ISSUES Tom Hayden. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. activist and former California state legislator. in the 60s. But far from being a time which gave birth to moral relativism. Fall 1987. How was that caused by the 60s? Those attitudes obviously result from the drive of the marketplace and the tendency of the university to provide for the immediate professional needs of society. the university will unfortunately reap a whirlwind. Volume 4. the whitest universities elitists could want and the income base of the people attending our universities is safely affluent. Fall 1987. I'll give another example. p. The 60s were an intellectual and intensely introspective decade. Volume 4. And it did. or Morningside Heights. We have the most conservative president we have ever had. that erosion comes from turning the university to the specialized uses of society. 20. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. 20. how are we to interpret Edward Teller's views on limited nuclear war? If academic leaders proclaim that the university is doing the best it can. activist and former California state legislator. to be much more accurate about the 60s than Bloom. BLOOM IS WRONG ± HIS IDEA OF THE UNIVERSITY HASN¶T EXISTED FOR CENTURIES Tom Hayden.wcdebate. 20. activist and former California state legislator. That administrative behavior deserved a revolt. 4. What would Bloom make of that situation? His focus is so confused because he chooses his events so selectively. Speaking of mindlessness. the Dean of Women was not encouraging reading in Greek tragedy. THE 1960s WEREN¶T ABOUT RELATIVISM: THEY INTRODUCED REAL MORALITY Tom Hayden. activist and former California state legislator.
The picture of a black man in chains was a made-to-order script for the radical melodrama. everybody knew it meant a confrontation with the Chicago police that could prove bloody. Hayden and the protesters provided the push and the party rule changes that pushed the antiwar candidacy of George McGovern and propelled the party¶s left wing into power.com . former radical. http://www. May/June 1997. which soon became the largest student organization of the New Left. it "radicalizes them. Seale was so obstructive that the judge ordered him bound and gagged. May/June 1997. he said more than once.htm.theamericanenterprise. The now-famous pictures of demonstrators being bloodied by police.org/taemj97s. Volume 9 Page 80 HAYDEN¶S POLITICAL AGENDA WAS SECONDARY: HE JUST WANTED TROUBLE 1. Because of such considerations." as Mao¶s Red Guards had done during the cultural revolution in China. and the chaos on the convention floor. One of the conspirators. 2. May/June 1997. 3. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. HAYDEN LURED PEOPLE TO CHICAGO FOR THE EXPRESS PURPOSE OF RIOTING David Horowitz. But that was enough to generate trouble²Hayden¶s real agenda. When the dust cleared in Chicago.theamericanenterprise.org/taemj97s. Jerry Rubin. This fit with the general strategy Hayden had laid out in private discussions with me. Hayden and seven other radicals. http://www.wcdebate.htm. Four years later. Ramparts editor-in-chief Warren Hinckle decided to participate by publishing a "wall paper. HAYDEN AND SDS ONLY WANTED TO STIR UP TROUBLE David Horowitz.org/taemj97s. Hayden¶s plans attracted only two or three thousand people to Lincoln Park. HAYDEN PROPELLED THE LEFT WING DEMOCRATS INTO POWER David Horowitz. During the riots that followed the assassination of Martin Luther King. including the Black Panthers¶ Bobby Seale. accessed May 1. http://www.htm. were indicted for conspiring to create a riot. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. 2002. the defendants created a near-riot in the courtroom itself. 2002. former radical. The ensuing melee changed the shape of American politics. former radical. As principal architect of the Port Huron Statement in 1962." The trick was to maneuver the idealistic and unsuspecting into situations that would achieve this result. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. accessed May 1. accessed May 1. During the trial. A radical street protest would put people¶s lives at risk. Chicago¶s Mayor Daley had recently ordered his police to shoot looters.theamericanenterprise. When people¶s heads are cracked by police. 2002. Tom Hayden had helped launch Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). admitted a decade later that the organizers had lured activists to Chicago hoping to create the riot that eventually took place. destroyed the presidential chances of Hubert Humphrey and moved the Democratic party dramatically to the left. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. When he called for a demonstration at the 1968 Democratic national convention to protest the Vietnam War.
He recruited the Yippies. Hayden¶s duplicity continued throughout the event. author of Commies: A Journey Through the Old Left. We¶re gonna barbecue us some pork!" Once the violence started. Wednesday. showed the possibility of a true democratic radicalism." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. 5. http://www. 2002.htm. and you check around and you got your piece. 2002.com . 2002. According to Hayden¶s own retrospective account. PREACHING PACIFISM. http://www. May/June 1997. Hayden proposed to them that "It might be useful if someone were to fire-bomb police cars." You won¶t find this in Hayden¶s own memoir. Hayden defiantly incited the crowd to "make sure that if blood is going to flow. It is therefore good that Ayers reminds us of Hayden¶s speech to the Weatherman at their Days of Rage. one of SDS¶s first leaders.frontpagemag.com/columnists/radosh/2001/rr11-27-01. We are so often told by Gitlin and others that Tom Hayden. Some would like to separate the rest of the so-called moderate New Left from the Weatherman. BUT HE REALLY WANTED VIOLENCE 1. 2002. has condemned Ayers as a "failed terrorist. the New Left and the Leftover Left. assuring everyone that his intentions were nonviolent.theamericanenterprise. 2001.htm. The Weathermen are setting the terms for all of us now. which had issued a call for "armed struggle" in American cities. HAYDEN WAS A GUERILLA BOMBTHROWER David Horowitz. accessed May 1.theamericanenterprise.org/taemj97s. Hayden then went to the most radical elements in the Left²those who actively advocated violence as a political tactic²and proposed that they provoke a conflict with the police who would be at the demonstration. Hayden gave Bobby Seale a platform in Lincoln Park. later told me with somebitterness that Hayden had been "extremely deceptive" in outlining his agenda for the gathering. November 27. Having secured pacifist cover.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. he warned one group in New York that "they should come to Chicago prepared to shed their blood. Rennie Davis. HAYDEN ADVOCATED VIOLENCE Ronald Radosh." and accuses him of responsibility for destroying what he saw as becoming a mass democratic Left. May/June 1997. and on Tuesday. As one of the Weather leaders told me later. Volume 9 Page 81 HAYDEN SAID HE WANTED PEACE. accessed May 1. and Saturday. former radical. Hayden also met before the convention with the Weatherman faction of sds.org/taemj97s. former radical. you got to down that pig in defense of yourself. At the event.wcdebate.theamericanenterprise. HAYDEN TRIED TO MAKE BLOOD FLOW ALL OVER THE CITY David Horowitz. causing the radical historian Staughton Lynd to comment that "on Monday." Anyone who knew Tom knew that the bombthrower was the real Hayden.org/taemj97s.htm. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. that he expected 25 people to die. accessed May 2.htm. a member of mobe. it will flow all over the city. former radical. when Hayden told the rioters "Anything that intensifies our resistance«is in the service of humanity. HAYDEN REALLY ADVOCATED FIREBOMBING COP CARS David Horowitz. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. the pacifist group that issued the call to the Chicago demonstration. Hayden gave the New Left the alternative of entering into the nation¶s democratic political structure and waging a serious political fight for left-wing social policies within the two-party system." and he told his co-organizer. and Friday [Hayden] was a National Liberation Front guerrilla. a group organized by Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin. http://www. FRONTPAGE MAGAZINE. Thursday. Todd Gitlin. Sid Peck. he«was on the left wing of the Democratic party. 3. but it gives the lie to those who argue that there is simply no connection between the early humanist New Left and the later Weathermen. who alarmed Chicago officials by immediately threatening to put lsd in the Chicago water supply. accessed May 1. May/June 1997. and Seale addressed the crowd with the suggestive exhortation that "If a pig comes up to us and starts swinging a billy club." 4. http://www. who wrote the famed SDS Port Huron statement in the movement¶s early days.
this essay will engage each of these values in the context he provides. 507 5 Zack Stenz. The second way that Zinn¶s historical methodology challenges the dominant orthodoxy is that it describes history from the standpoint of the oppressed. ³Zinn and the Art of History. to Zinn¶s personal background 1 Interview of Howard Zinn by Robert Birnbaum. p. http://www. p. the character flaws of our leaders. he actively engages it.2 One of Zinn¶s primary arguments against this approach is that the disinterested and ³rational´ approach to history facilitates a distance between the historian and the subject matter that leads to complicity with evils in history: It is precisely by describing the brutality of war. p. and the lies propagated by ³politicians. and an autobiographical commentary on politics and history. he tells the narrative of history from the bottom up. Volume 9 Page 82 HOWARD ZINN Howard Zinn is a historian and activist to take note of by any measure. accessed May 11. April 18-24 1996. rather than shying away from controversy. scientific (i. Most United States history is told from a perspective that puts the government and politicians at the center.htm 2 Howard Zinn. These books have a vested interest in making their version of history appear definitive.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. THE ZINN READER: WRITINGS ON DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. 2002. that students can be taught to think critically about the world that they live in..com/papers/sonoma/04. A PEOPLE¶S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES. A PEOPLE¶S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES. and rational (unemotional). the church.html Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. p. There are four ways in particular that Zinn¶s historical methodology radically different from the norm: he recognizes (and even embraces) the bias in perspective that is a natural part of historiography. but almost universally accepted. from the author¶s perspective. ³Howard Zinn brings his passion for history to Sonoma County´ in The Sonoma Independent. objective. either nationally or in terms of his own life. 506 4 Zinn. In contrast.18. it makes them appear more credible and authoritative than their competitors.1 In addition to his historical writing. 503-506 3 Zinn. from the perspective of those who have been disempowered throughout each era. Zinn is not only prolific but is considered one of the most accessible modern historical writers. he integrates the concepts of historiography with activism. no date.´ Zinn critiques what he sees as the sometimes unspoken. ³Zinn is a champion of the notion that historical change occurs more through mass movements of ordinary people than through the wisdom and insight of so-called Great Men. and ignores the daily lives of ordinary citizens. He received his Doctorate in history from Columbia and is a Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. because.wcdebate. I will address each of these in turn.´5 This is due. THE ZINN READER. that is. [and] popular leaders. narrowly tailored to one academic discipline. has sold more than 800. the mass media. such as history textbooks used in schools. Because many of them are framed in terms of their historical context.96/books9616. neutral).000 copies. History has traditionally been told as though there was an objective truth waiting to be discovered and written. spoken word CDs. There are a number of different values and philosophical arguments that Zinn writes about. His progressive history text.org/index23. The author of more than 15 books. 1997. 2002. within the context of history. Howard Zinn takes an entirely different approach to the writing of history. revolutionized the way history is told.com . in part. In his essay ³The Uses of Scholarship. This is particularly the case in texts that claim to be at all comprehensive.e. rules for ³good´ scholarship.metroactive. accessed May 12.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. np. he has authored several plays. THE ZINN READER. http://howardzinn. These are that writing should be disinterested.´4 for example. CRITIQUES OF HISTORIOGRAPHY Zinn¶s seminal text.
Z MAG. This makes him simultaneously one of the most loved and hated historians of this era. he does not identify with those who argue that hard work is all that is needed to get ahead. http://howardzinn. ³[D]espite his popularity. The book is organized into nine sections. Zinn's brand of "bottom-up" history has been reviled by political conservatives. and at a young age was influenced by the writing of Charles Dickens.´8 Despite being someone who might be described as having ³pulled himself up by his bootstraps´ to raise from a working class background to a famous intellectual. particularly former Supreme Court Associate Justice Abe Fortas. YOU MUST ACCEPT PUNISHMENT IF YOU COMMIT CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE This fallacy derives from the glorification of Socrates¶ decision to accept his unjust death sentence. A PEOPLE¶S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.com . which favors the rich.wcdebate. AND DEMOCRACY: NINE FALLACIES Zinn writes extensively. and ³when 6 7 Stenz. such as his retelling of the colonization of North America from the perspective of indigenous peoples. the guardians of the old order will spring to the attack. One of his lesser known books. Volume 9 Page 83 with the civil rights movement and the labor movement. who were engaged in non-violent civil disobedience. he won a New Deal job as an apprentice shipfitter. Upton Sinclair. Zinn came from a working class background. from his role as a professor. np. Third. each of which refutes one of the primary arguments made by opponents of civil disobedience. Instead. At age eighteen. Marx. Zinn does not shy away from controversy in either his historical writing or his commentary on modern political events in magazines such as THE PROGRESSIVE. Despite the benefits of that job. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. his youth heavily influenced his perspective on class in the United States: ³If you look at the laws passed in the United States from the very beginning of the [A]merican republic down to the present day. and he confesses that he isn't surprised«. Zinn explained: ³I could see history being made before my eyes by ordinary people who are never written about in the history books. Zinn argues that if one is punished for breaking an unjust law. p. 1998. you'll find that most of the legislation passed is class legislation which favors the elite. 2002.´7 In addition to these issues of racism. p. he is a proponent of progressive social and economic policy. Stenz. as well as many essays about his specific experience at Spelman. which was painful. in part because of his commitment to stirring up controversy. and closely related to the last point."Whenever you introduce a new view of historical events.org/index23. physically demanding.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. in nearly all of his books. Zinn is well known for integrating his own personal advocacy and activism with his writing. and others. np. to take a position as the chair of the history and social sciences department at Spelman College. You'll find huge subsidies to corporations all through [A]merican history. lived in tenements. accessed May 12. John Stienbeck. Some of these fallacies are specific to the role of the court system in ensuring justice. Inspired by his students. MOTHER JONES. anarchist.´6 His perspective is that revolutionary and even utopian ideas are crucial for shaking up the stronghold conservatives have over academia. then the punishment itself is unjust.htm Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. to a great degree. however. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn. and prohibited union membership. he participated in extensive protest with his students. Finally. the role socioeconomic class played throughout history greatly effected Zinn." Zinn says. and his next job as an Air Force bomber. In 1956 Zinn moved his wife and children to Atlanta. about the role of social protest and civil disobedience within democratic societies. and anti-fascist writers. and as a result eventually wrote the book DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY (his treatise on civil disobedience). 8 Howard Zinn. Georgia. This is the perspective of much of his historical writing (A PEOPLE¶S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES includes lots of infrequently taught labor union history) as well as the chapter of his memoir called ³Growing Up Class Conscious´ from YOU CAN¶T BE NEUTRAL ON A MOVING TRAIN. is focused specifically on this topic. a ³Negro college´ in a deeply segregated area. However. and various communist. during the depression. This stems. NONVIOLENCE. but extends to all of his writing. particularly the United States. December 3. but I will focus on those concerning the role of the social protester.
In a theoretical sense. 45 11 Howard Zinn. Self-defense is by its nature focused. 1968. In any humanist philosophy. p. he points out that the severity of the protest must be weighed against the severity of the injustice: ³Would not any reasonable code have to weigh the degree of violence used in any case against the importance of the issue at stake? Thus. because it is counterviolence directed only at a perpetrator of violence«.. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. and Thoreau²who argue for the benefits of nonviolence. desegregation). may be morally defensible. a massive amount of violence for a small or dubious reason would be harder to justify than a small amount of violence for an important and a clear reason.g. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. Perhaps the most obvious example were the ³sit ins´ in the segregated South which violated laws against trespassing. This principle would also proscribe any solution to injustice resulting not from unjust laws. but the failure of the government to enforce just laws (e. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. This would include violating curfews. Planned acts of violence in an enormously important cause (the resistance against Hitler may be an example) could be justifiable.. Zinn writes. On the one hand. is useful in answering quotations from Martin Luther King Jr. he sees the ultimate end of civil disobedience. a distinction must be drawn between violence against people and violence against property. the reason this principle is invalid is that it fails to distinguish between important and trivial laws in the context of preventing massive injustice. it treats protest like a game to argue that protesters should accept the penalty for losing instead of continuing their protest to the end.wcdebate. the more it is aimed carefully at either a foreign controlling power. but instead finds a middle ground between violence and nonviolence. etc.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. when the segregation was not a public law but a decision by a private business owner.´10 The litmus test for determining the legitimacy of violence in civil disobedience has to do with the degree to which it is discriminating: Violence might be justifiable as it approaches the focusing and control of surgery. 48 10 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. This argument. and progress generally. injustice is sanctioned and perpetuated. On the other hand. for example.. 1968. Zinn argues that all things being equal. Zinn distinguishes between different levels of violence. p. Generally. by Zinn. Moreover. even thinkers like Gandhi and Thoreau at times defended the use of violence when no other option was available. Volume 9 Page 84 unjust decisions are accepted. as being a nonviolent world. 1968. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE MUST BE LIMITED TO LAWS WHICH ARE THEMSELVES WRONG Statists argue that violating laws other than those which are directly unfair is unjustified. blocking streets.com . nonviolence is better than violence.´ which Zinn argues are taken out of context when they are characterized as arguing that protesters must accept the punishment for their acts of civil disobedience. p.´9 In fact. in his essay ³Letter From A Birmingham Jail. most of the people who respond to this argument are people²such as Malcom X and Ward Churchill²who explicitly espouse levels of violence that may be difficult to defend. in the course of a protest. One virtue of Zinn¶s writing is that he does not explicitly encourage violence. Furthermore. Martin Luther King Jr. Revolutionary warfare. or a local tyrannical elite. 29 Howard Zinn. Zinn outlines several situations which demonstrate the inanity of this principle. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE MUST BE ABSOLUTELY NONVIOLENT There are a plethora of excellent theorists²including Gandhi. Unfortunately.11 9 Howard Zinn. Zinn points out.
But stability and order are not the only desirable conditions social life. 2002. particularly for a United States historian. social. This is certainly true at times. and when the target of the violence is directly responsible for the oppression. Many conservative historians. Thus. they maintain peace and stability. p.´14 It is in these instances that civil disobedience is justified. in various terms.18. In these situations. The second justification for the argument that the law (at least in a democracy) has intrinsic value. 371 14 Zinn. have ³µcharacterized A People's History as a ³Hate America´ book. she is justified in violating laws²even if that lawlessness leads to social instability²to fight to stop the injustice. It is hard to imagine how anyone could read Zinn¶s articles or book chapters about the civil rights or labor movements without sensing the strong sense of pride he feels in American people.com . There is no better example of such a case than in the civil rights movement in the United States. and must therefore be followed. as when it forbids rape and murder or requires a school to admit all students regardless of race or nationality. 370-371 15 Zack Stenz.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. the majority denies basic principles of justice to the minority for the sake of the majority¶s benefit. µBut«while it's true that I take a very critical view of the United States government in history.html 13 12 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. even civil disobedience that has good intentions is unjust. stability. Zinn argues that there is a substantial difference between loyalty to the government of a country and loyalty to the country itself.wcdebate. http://www.metroactive.96/books9616. It is too simplistic to argue that because democracy is majoritarian. as we have seen throughout history. but it may not bring justice. April 18-24 1996.¶´ 15 This demonstrates the fundamental distinction Zinn draws between how conservatives define patriotism and how he defines it.´12 The most important question then becomes: when the law does not serve the cause of justice. Absolute obedience to law may bring order temporarily. when it protects the rich and punishes the poor. and will therefore be just. or anything else. Chaos and violence are not. thus represents the common sentiment of what is just. There is also justice«. The problem with this view is that it places stability at a premium while ignoring the price of that stability: ³Surely. ³Howard Zinn brings his passion for history to Sonoma County´ in The Sonoma Independent. p. THE ZINN READER.com/papers/sonoma/04. Often. is that law is created by the people. There are two primary differences First. then law and justice are opposed to one another. Nevertheless. THE ZINN READER. 370-371 Zinn. as Zinn writes: ³The law may serve justice. be it material. do citizens have a greater obligation to ensure lawfulness or justice? Zinn writes: Thus. it will protect whatever the majority sees as just. the minority is structurally precluded from using the law to advance their rights. THE ZINN READER. RULE OF LAW HAS INTRINSIC VALUE / DEMOCRACY MAKES PROTEST UNNECESSARY There are two primary justifications for the argument that the law has intrinsic value and that. therefore. accessed May 11. Zinn¶s argument is that limited violence is justified when the oppression being fought is extreme. thus making civil disobedience unjustified. But when it sends young men to war.¶ what was considered Zinn. Zinn argued that ³the great writers could see through the fog of what was called µpatriotism. civil disobedience may be the only possible method for fighting for justice. and order are desirable. and she sees no other effective method. when an individual sees injustice in the world around her.¶ Zinn says. PATRIOTISM AND OPTIMISM Zinn is frequently criticized for not being sufficiently patriotic. I take a very positive view toward the mass movements of people in America who have fought to make the country a better place. peace. The first of these arguments is that regardless of whether the laws are just or unjust. when there are no other viable means of successful protest. and in these cases it is irrefutable that the law ought be followed. p. Volume 9 Page 85 In essence.
http://www.wcdebate. ³Artists of Resistency.com/papers/sonoma/04.html 17 Howard Zinn. to show people in the present day that they can fight back and win.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. far from being unpatriotic. in which the government is overwhelmingly bad and cannot be resisted.96/books9616. but the people and the social movements that have fought for justice for all people. he writes history from a perspective which demonstrates the gains that have been made by social movements since the government was established.html 16 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.html 18 Zack Stenz. by Mark Twain: Similarly. http://www.´ THE PROGRESSIVE. 2002.org/zinn0701. As he argues in his examination of civil disobedience. but they haven't shown what people have done to resist these policies.´ THE PROGRESSIVE. Volume 9 Page 86 loyalty. They've done a very good job of illuminating the various bad policies of the American government. accessed May 11. is actually one of the best ways of being a patriot. challenging unjust governmental policies is an integral part of being a citizen of a democracy.progressive. by protesting we strengthen and engage in the true democratic spirit of America. in contrast to the perception of his critics. accessed May 11. His optimism leads him to take a more balanced approach: ³the left hasn't balanced its act very well«.org/zinn0701. he quoted from the satire A CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING ARTHUR'S COURT.com . ³Howard Zinn brings his passion for history to Sonoma County´ in The Sonoma Independent. 2002. Zinn feels that the real.¶´ 16 To demonstrate the distinction. However. attempt to describe a world of oppressive futility. The second aspect of Zinn¶s redefinition of patriotism is his insistence that criticizing the government. accessed May 11.18. ³Artists of Resistency. eternal part of what makes America America is not the government. And that's a critical thing to do. Thus. Instead. Zinn is not purely critical of the United States government and its leaders. Howard Zinn. April 18-24 1996.´18 One important aspect of Zinn¶s writing is that it does not. often successfully. Only by exercizing the right (and duty) to protest do we as individuals truly participate in democracy. July 2001. July 2001. http://www.progressive.metroactive. 2002.
http://www. New York: Seven Stories Press. 1964 FREESPEECH. Howard. Accessed May 17. Volume 9 Page 87 BIBLIOGRAPHY Churchill.wcdebate. Howard. 2000 Zinn.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.howardzinn. Winnipeg: Arbeiter Ring Publishing.htm HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. New York: Vintage Books. 1968 Zinn. 1991 Zinn. New York: Seven Stories Press. 1997 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. New York: Signet Books. 2002 Zinn. YOU CAN¶T BE NEUTRAL ON A MOVING TRAIN: A PERSONAL HISTORY OF OUR TIMES. Howard. 1994 Zinn. AND THE FIGHTING SPIRIT OF LABOR'S LAST CENTURY. 2000 Zinn. Accessed May 17.org/bios/homepage. PACIFISM AS PATHOLOGY : REFLECTIONS ON THE ROLE OF ARMED STRUGGLE IN NORTH AMERICA. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY: NINE FALLACIES ON LAW AND ORDER.zmag.com .cfm?authorID=97 Zinn. New York: Seven Stories Press. Ward. Howard. MUSICIANS.freespeech. New York: Seven Stories Press. New York: Harper Perennial. 2001 Zinn. Boston: Beacon Press.org/ HOWARD ZINN¶S ZNET HOMEPAGE. Howard. TERRORISM AND WAR (OPEN MEDIA PAMPHLET SERIES). Howard. THE ZINN READER: WRITINGS ON DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. Howard. THREE STRIKES: MINERS. 1999 Fortas. DECLARATIONS OF INDEPENDENCE : CROSS-EXAMINING AMERICAN IDEOLOGY. Accessed May 17. et al. A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES: 1492 TO PRESENT. Boston: Beacon Press.ORG. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. HOWARD ZINN: ON HISTORY. SALESGIRLS. http://www. 2002. New York: Harper Perennial. 2001 Zinn. HOWARD ZINN ON WAR. 2002. Abe. http://free.org/evolution/articles. 2002. Howard. Howard.
And what it does is declare a willingness to decide when laws are consonant with morality and when laws are immoral and support terrible things like war or racism or sexism. It's always taken the actions of citizens and actions of civil disobedience to bring these issues to national attention and finally force the President and Congress and the Supreme Court to begin to move. and indiscriminate violence turns people (rightly) away. December 3. limited. If you go back a hundred and fifty years ago to the middle of the nineteenth century. It hasn't been Congress or the President or the Supreme Court who have initiated acts to remedy racial inequality or tho do something about the government going to war or about economic injustice. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Sometimes though it's the law itself that's disobeyed. aimed carefully at the source of injustice. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn.htm I think that the history of the United States indicates that when we have had to redress serious grievances. 1998. And in a number of cases. and preferably directed against property rather than people. 1998. They broke into courthouses and into jailhouses to rescue escaped slaves.org/index23. to the 1850s.com . And so laws that sustain injustice should be disobeyed. All this is to suggest what criteria need to be kept in mind whenever civil disobedience. 2002. to disorder. The Fugitive Slave Act required the federal government to aid southern slave owners in bringing escaped slaves back to the South. they gathered together in committees. Volume 9 Page 88 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS JUSTIFIED 1. in situations of urgency where very vital issues are at stake.htm The principle of civil disobedience doesn't state as a universal that you must always disobey the law (laughter). p. You were talking about this going on for hundreds of years. One is the moral reason: that violence is in itself an evil.org/index23. may move from mild actions. juries acquitted them. sometimes the law that is disobeyed is a law against trespassing or a law against picketing and people will commit civil disobedience and trespass as the sitdown strikers did in the United States in the 1930s when they took over factories or as the black protesters did in the civil rights movement in the United States when they sat down in lunch counters and refused to move. free black people. http://howardzinn. The other is the reason of effectiveness: The purpose of civil disobedience is to communicate to others.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. that has not been done by the three branches of government that are always paraded before junior high school students and high school students as the essence of democracy. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS NECESSARY FOR JUSTICE Howard Zinn. Because juries recognized the morality of what they were doing even though they had broken the law. 1968. manifested itself in many acts of civil disobedience against the Fugitive Slave Act that had been passed in 1850. white people. And in the 1850s. and other means have been exhausted. or in) self-defense. accessed May 12. to overt violence: it would have to guarded.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. http://howardzinn. you'll see that it wasn't Lincoln who caused the anti-slavery sentiment in the country to grow. 2002. when they were brought up on charges and put on trial. There are two reasons for such criteria. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE MAY BE JUSTIFIED BY SPECIFIC CRITERIA Howard Zinn. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE DENIES THAT LAWS ARE ALWAYS MORAL OR CORRECT Howard Zinn. accessed May 12. Well people in the North. But the idea of civil disobedience is that Law is not sacrosanct. And they used certainly acts of civil disobedience. injustices of all sorts.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE.wcdebate. December 3. 2. What it does do is refuse the universal principle that you must always obey the law. Lincoln was reacting to the growth of the movement that became stronger and stronger from the 1830s to the outbreak of the civil war. escaped slaves. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn. black people. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. and so can only be justified in those circumstances where it is a last resort in eliminating a greater evil. 3. 48-49.
http://howardzinn. their calls for war. and justice. Victor Considerant pointed out) and we have lost our freedom. she responded quietly. 2002. that is responsible for the terrible violence of our century. or finally. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn. ³It¶s not God¶s law. in their appeals to patriotism. DEMOCRATIC LAW IS NOT SACROSANCT. by the very government that condemned John Brown to death for seeking a less costly means of emancipating the slave.wcdebate. when Dan went underground. a devastating war waged.that wealth dominates the electoral process (see Murray Levin¶s meticulous study. but how much of an audience we can speak to depends on how much money we have).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. IT MAY BE VIOLATED ON BEHALF OF JUSTICE Howard Zinn. we have found it necessary to go outside ³the proper channels´ at certain pivotal times in our history. The disobedience of conscientious citizens. Or perhaps we should say ³ignore man-made law. that the moment we have cast our ballots. p. the law of the politicians´ to obey the higher law²what Reverend Coffin and Father Berrigan would call ³the law of God´ and what others might call the law of human rights. has been directed to stopping the violence of war. for Michels¶ ³iron law of oligarchy´ operates to keep us at the mercy of powerful politicos in both parties. we have freedom to speak. accessed May 12. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. Undemocratic because it divests you as an individual and the right to make a decision yourself about what is right or wrong and it gives all of that power to that small band of legislators who have decided for themselves what is right and what is wrong. Kennedy Campaigning). 1968. that the two-party system is_only slightly less tyrannical than the one-party system.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Historically. the representative takes over (as Rousseau. freedom. Volume 9 Page 89 DEMOCRACY DOESN¶T DELEGITIMIZE CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE 1. (Daniel Berrigan¶s elderly mother was asked by a reporter. Surely. p. PROTEST IS NECESSARY WHEN VOTING FAILS TO PROMOTE JUSTICE Howard Zinn. it is obedience to governments. 1998. And the rights of even a portion of the laboring population were secured only by extra-legal uprisings in a wave of violent labor struggles from 1877 to 1914. and before him. 400-401. Slavery probably could not he ended without either a series of revolts by blacks. once referred to the biblical Genesis of the human race and the bite into the forbidden apple: ³Human history began with an act of disobedience and it is not unlikely that it will be terminated by an act of obedience. 3. We have been naive in America about the efficacy of the ballot box and representative government to rectify injustice. THE ZINN READER: WRITINGS ON DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. We forget what the history of American politics has shown repeatedly: that there is only the vaguest connection between the issues debated in an election campaign and those ultimately decided by the government. 2.com . 65-66.´) The truth is so often the total reverse of what has been told us by our culture that we cannot turn our heads far enough around to see it. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. the principles of peace. We forget (hence all the emphasis in recent years on voting rights for the Negro) how inadequate is the ballot. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. how she felt about her son defying the law.htm So the Law should not be given the holy deference which we are all taught to give it when we grow up and go to school. The result of all this is that most of us²when we are honest with ourselves²feel utterly helpless to affect public policy by the orthodox channels. We forget that the information on which the public depends for judging public issues is in the hands of the wealthiest sections of the (true.. thinking about nuclear war. and again during the sit-down strikes of the 1930¶s. The psychologist Erich Fromm. December 3. 1997.org/index23. and it's a profoundly undemocratic idea to say that you should judge what you do according to what the law says. So to me the idea of civil dissobedience is to really enhance democracy. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. ironically. The feeling is justified. for the most part nonviolent. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE ENHANCES DEMOCRACY Howard Zinn.
It must be prepared to prevent this by the use of planning. Especially if the civil disobedience involves violence or a breach of public order prohibited by statute or ordinance. and restrained law enforcement.com . A citizen cannot demand of his government or of other people obedience to the law. It is the state¶s duty to arrest and punish those who violate the laws designed to protect private safety and public order. always involve the danger that they may erupt into violence. he should be punished by fine or imprisonment. This is true in many instances of refusal to submit to induction. as well as practical wisdom.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. must be identified. police and citizens must be tolerant of mass demonstrations. It was true in the case of Mrs. Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. charged. in accordance with the provisions of law. However careful both sides may be. so each individual is bound by all of the laws under the Constitution. It is not merely government that must live under law. Vivian Kellems. Just as we expect the government to be bound by all laws. of course. it is the state¶s duty to arrest the dissident. Volume 9 Page 90 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS UNJUSTIFIED 1. He may be passionately inspired. and as a matter of good sense. does not confer immunity for law violation. He may. Each of us must live under law. This is the dangerous potential of mass demonstrations. Police must be trained in tact as well as tactics. and convicted. and at the same time claim a right in himself to break it by lawless conduct. and civil disobedience may turn into riot. We are a government and a people under law. or both. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. This is very different from the kind of civil disobedience which is not engaged in for the purpose of testing the legality of an order within our system of government and laws. Law violation or intemperate behavior by one demonstrator may provoke police action. He cannot substitute his own judgment or passion. however large and inconvenient. No city should be expected to submit to paralysis or to widespread injury to persons and property brought on by violation of law. The motive of civil disobedience. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE MAY SPIRAL OUT OF CONTROL. ordered. GOOD MOTIVATIONS FOR CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE DO NOT MAKE IT JUSTIFIED Abe Fortas. 70-71. He may be motivated by the highest moral principles. 1968. and controlled. to make every effort to provide adequate facilities so that the demonstration can be effectively staged. so that it can be conducted without paralyzing the city¶s life. be right in the eyes of history or morality or philosophy. Just as our form of life depends upon the government¶s subordination to law under the Constitution. whatever its type. civil disobedience is prompted by both motives²by both a desire to make propaganda and to challenge the law. whatever their object. He cannot pick and choose. indeed. 64-65. 1968. and any move that they may make toward violence must be quickly countered. The city must perform this duty. p. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 62-63. Both of these are essential. a young man may be advised by counsel that he must refuse to report for induction in order to challenge the constitutionality of the Selective Service Act. it is the city¶s duty under law. Agitators and provocateurs. Thoreau was an inspiring figure and a great writer. free of punishment or penalty. But at the same time. but which is practiced as a technique of warfare in a social and political conflict over other issues. and to provide protection for the demonstrators. An enormous degree of self-control and discipline are required on both sides. teach us that city officials. there is always danger that individual. 3. Intemperate or hasty retaliation by a single policeman may provoke disorder. These are not controlling. isolated acts of a few persons will overwhelm the restraint of thousands. JUSTIFYING ITS RESTRAING Abe Fortas. but his essay should not be read as a handbook on political science. Demonstrators must be organized. p. Frequently. however peacefully intended by their organizers. CITIZENS SHOULD NOT VIOLATE THE RULE OF LAW FOR THE SAKE OF PROTEST Abe Fortas.wcdebate. so it also depends upon the individual¶s subservience to the laws duly prescribed. 2. These mass demonstrations. For example. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. our Constitution and our traditions. who refused to pay withholding taxes because she thought they were unlawful and she wanted to protest the invasion of her freedom as a capitalist and citizen. 1968. Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. If he is properly arrested. persuasion. Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. unless the law is invalid in general or as applied. p. however noble. But despite this. for the rules of law. Let me first be clear about a fundamental proposition.
but has little chance when cause and effect are separated. np.. 2002. In either event ² mere ineffectuality or suicide ² the objective conditions leading to the necessity for social revolution remain unlikely to be altered by purely pacifist strategies. 2001. Pacifist praxis (or. Australia. 3. or. leaves its adherents with but two possible outcomes to their line of action: To render themselves perpetually ineffectual (and consequently unthreatening) in the face of state power. after a short flowering. np. in practical terms. Bomber pilots show little remorse for the agony caused by their weapons detonating far below. 44 Absurdity clearly abounds when suggesting that the state will refrain from using all necessary physical force to protect against undesired forms of change and threats to its safety. NONVIOLENCE VERSUS CAPITALISM.e. p.au/arts/sts/bmartin/pubs/01nvc/nvcall. The aftermath of the Iranian revolution was equally disastrous.uow. 2001. Accessed May 17. In El Salvador in 1944.wcdebate. While this approach explains some aspects of the power of nonviolent action.com . pacifism and its attendant sacrifice of life cannot even be rightly said to have substantially impacted the level of evident societal violence. violence has been an integral requirement of the process of transforming the state. The fallacy of such a proposition is best demonstrated by the nazi state¶s removal of its ³Jewish threat. Associate Professor in Science. To make themselves a clear and apparent danger to the state. NONVIOLENCE FAILS IN THE CONTEXT OF MODERN CONFLICTS Brian Martin. Perhaps more worrying are the dispiriting aftermaths following some short-term successes of nonviolent action. more appropriately. but variations do little to alter the crux of the situation: there simply has never been a revolution. http://www. Australia. brought into being on the basis of the principles of pacifism.au/arts/sts/bmartin/pubs/01nvc/nvcall. in which case they will likely be largely ignored by the status quo and self-eliminating in terms of revolutionary potential. Nonviolent action is not guaranteed to succeed either in the short term or long term. 2001. In every instance. Nonviolent tacticians imply (perhaps unwittingly) that the ³immoral state´ which they seek to transform will somehow exhibit exactly the same sort of superior morality they claim for themselves (i. while managers of large international banks have little inkling of the suffering caused by their lending policies in foreign countries. Professor of Ethnic Studies and Coordinator of American Indian Studies at University of Colorado. History is replete with variations on these two subthemes. p. NONVIOLENCE DO NOT CREATE SUSTAINABLE VICTORIES Brian Martin.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. The new Islamic regime led by Ayatollah Khomeini was just as ruthless as its predecessor in stamping out dissent.uow. at least a relative degree of nonviolence). PACIFISM AS PATHOLOGY. Technology & Society at the University of Wollongong. The mass suffering that revolution is intended to alleviate will continue as the revolution strangles itself on the altar of ³nonviolence. it is inadequate on its own. in which case they are subject to physical liquidation by the status quo and are self-eliminating in terms of revolutionary potential. p. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. the induced starvation of whole populations and the like.edu. There was a military coup later in 1944. Moral persuasion sometimes works in face-to-face encounters. http://www.html The consent theory of power Gandhi approached nonviolent action as a moral issue and. ³ Violent intervention by others divides itself naturally into the two parts represented by Gandhi¶s unsolicited ³windfall´ of massive violence directed against his opponents and King¶s rather more conscious and deliberate utilization of incipient antistate violence as a means of advancing his own pacifist agenda. or even a substantial social reorganization. the successful nonviolent insurrection against the Martínez dictatorship did not lead to long term improvement for the El Salvadorean people. As these conditions typically include war.´ 2. NONVIOLENCE VERSUS CAPITALISM. 2002. Volume 9 Page 91 NONVIOLENT RESISTANCE FAILS 1. if followed to its logical conclusions. Accessed May 17.html It is important to note that not all uses of nonviolent action lead to long-lasting. NONVIOLENT STRATEGIES ARE UNABLE TO EFFECTUATE CHANGE Ward Churchill. and continued repression in following decades. Associate Professor in Science. as a means for persuading opponents to change their minds as a result of their witnessing the commitment and willing sacrifice of nonviolent activists.edu. was crushed in the Beijing massacre. worthwhile change. pseudo-praxis). Technology & Society at the University of Wollongong. The 1989 prodemocracy movement in China.
bald white establishment guy. All the while. The fact that Nye is neither a lifelong government official nor a lifelong academic may have some influence on his thinking. Jr. But the guy is a pretty sharp old. You might think that Nye is merely another old. Nye grew up on a farm in Northwest New Jersey.wcdebate. he is an intriguing thinker who appears to approach each problem as a fresh challenge. serving as an editorial board member of Foreign Policy and International Security magazines.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Nye is currently Dean of Harvard University¶s Kennedy School of Government. Joseph Nye. he is at least apparently willing to try to step outside that rigid intellectual framework as he explores the issues of today. and Nye¶s likely got it. and a graduate of the Ph. Joseph Nye. to the extent that Nye is reluctant to adopt the ideological fabric of any particular pigeonhole. Name a qualification that holds weight in the policy wonk world. THE LIFE OF JOSEPH NYE. He stayed on in that capacity from 1977-1979. It¶s hard to imagine the left cozying up to him very much. doing his post-graduate work at Oxford University. JR. and received his bachelor¶s degree in an interdisciplinary major from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University in 1958. He fluttered between governmental work and university work over the next several years. after which he returned to Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government to teach. After Jimmy Carter won the 1976 presidential election. he asked Nye to serve as deputy undersecretary in charge of Carter's nonproliferation initiatives.D program in government at Harvard.com . When Cyrus Vance was appointed secretary of state. bald white guy that has worked in the government and worked with universities. you¶d sort of be right. and his viewpoints are refreshing in their lack of ideological predisposition. If we are to think of American politics in terms of the left wing and the right wing. Written for the heavy-hitter journals? Check. Jr. Speaking of his upbringing and intellectual culture. JR. Nye was recruited to join his transition team as a consultant on nuclear proliferation. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Intellectual chops that are unquestioned? Check. Longtime professor? Check. I wouldn¶t want to wash my car while that seagull is flying overhead. Well versed in foreign policy. Just look at the wide variety of sources that have praised his work: from Machiavellian realists like Henry Kissinger to loose cannons like George Soros. is one of the most influential modern voices in American governance and political science. Volume 9 Page 92 JOSEPH NYE. those are some big outstretched wings. he is also an influential thinker on the domestic scene. And. Nye kept up his prolific writing on international security issues. He has written more than one hundred articles in professional journals. let¶s look at where Nye has come from in order to understand where he is today. While he is certainly a product of his upbringing and intellectual culture. The further right won¶t like his reluctance to use American power in every situation. He seems decidedly less dogmatic than a great deal of his contemporaries who have spent their entire careers in the Beltway or the Ivory Tower. He is a Rhodes Scholar. from the Democratic establishment sources like Strobe Talbott and Madeleine Albright to academics of all kinds. was born in 1937. and imagine the wings praising Nye as belonging to some giant bird. However. That¶s not to say there is something in Nye for everyone. well.
But if I get you to want what I want. NYE ON INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS While technically Nye falls under the school of ³realism´ in international relations. It¶s only for a truly dramatic event (like the terrorist tragedy on September 11. then. "Hard power is when I coerce you--if I the use a carrot or a stick to get you to do something you otherwise wouldn't do.´ Nye wrote an insightful article with a global focus in the Guardian on March 31.always reacting to emerging situations rather than viewing emerging phenomena through a fixed lens. that's hard power. diplomacy and other channels in an attempt to exert influence over the other state. Nye coined the marvelously efficient phrase ³soft power´ to refer to those non-military forms of exerting influence -. That¶s true of most adversaries in addition to traditional allies like Japan. especially in the face of competing and potentially adversarial powers? The answer is a question of containment vs. then the United States must not isolate china.cultural. 2002. Containment is a more hawkish strategy. might turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy. which included the following: Soft power is an important concept to understand." This has not changed since September 11. That said. where one uses foreign policy tools to isolate an adversarial power. despite the United States so-called ³war on terrorism. Bush did by imposing steel tariffs recently) in response." Nye has said. We¶re going to either negotiate with them or flex our own economic muscles (as George W. Nye is a realist who does seek to advance American interests through the policies he advocates. though the Taiwanese don¶t agree) or Japan. Take.com . War is an impractical and problematic means of enforcing American interests and desires. Will this strategy work? No one can be certain. other measures (such as the multilateral United Nations oil embargo and other sanctions) are really more effective with less of an opportunity cost. Nye is not. his views of power and global politics is much more nuanced than the big-stick diplomats that dominate the scene today. the case of China.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. An attempt to treat China as a threat. ³If China can be brought into a network of rule-based relations. Volume 9 Page 93 As Nye himself has observed This lack of a fixed plan mirrors his thinking -. engagement. but it is clearly better than the containment strategy . If we disagree with Japan¶s trade policy. Nye¶s idea is that a strong China is better for the world community than a weak China. does one secure American interests. economic. for example. If that is true. China will be a force in the new century. While Bush has been threatening to invade Iraq almost constantly for the last year. that's the ultimate because it costs me almost nothing but I get the outcomes I want. "Soft Power is your ability to attract others to get the outcomes you want. Engagement is where a nation continues to interact with the adversarial power through trade.wcdebate. as should be clear. and I don't have to use a carrot or a stick. given that a weak China would be more given to lash out to shore up its power -. Nye reasons. particularly in the post Cold War world. in fact. How.. Nye is usually an advocate of engagement. such an evolution may continue. It would be one of Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. for example. 2001) that will of necessity engender a military response.especially against American allies like Taiwan (an island nation that China considers a part of its country.. considering it a ³solution´ that is often actually creates worse problems. we aren¶t going to invade them. etc. Nye is a believer in war as a last resort. He meditates on the differences between soft and hard power in his book THE PARADOX OF AMERICAN POWER: WHY THE WORLD'S ONLY SUPERPOWER CAN'T GO IT ALONE. An emerging power with one billion citizens and a growing economy. a hawk per se.
While he surely agrees with virtually none of their prescribed solutions (calling anti-free trade protesters ³demagogues in the street´). While himself an advocate of a globalized economy and free trade ± believing that the rising tide of economic growth lifts all boats. such as China. Nye knows what kind of policies led to increased tensions during that period in history. even the poor ± he is one of the few mainstream analysts who has attempted to seek out ways to assuage the concerns of protesters. Nye wrote on ³Globalization's Democratic Deficit: How to Make International Institutions More Accountable. Rather than isolating other nations. He reasons that if decisions are made out in the open.´ he wrote. in his view. NYE ON GLOBALIZATION Neither a demagogue nor a radical. and the World Trade Organization.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.wcdebate. that might satisfy the majority of the populace and confer a legitimacy on those institutions they haven¶t seen yet. Volume 9 Page 94 history's tragic ironies if domestic politics leads to an unnecessary Cold War in Asia that will be costly for this and future generations of Americans. we should be using our influence in a positive manner. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. it will help allay the fears of most Americans and other world citizens. It should be noted that this falls right in line with his idea of soft power: the ³big stick´ approach is a counterproductive one.com . he at least has attempted to address the flaws in the system some have identified. In an article for FOREIGN AFFAIRS. As an intellectual who lived through the darkest moments of the Cold War. an establishment journal that some call the most influential in the world. the International Monetary Fund.´ He sets out a program of action for increasing transparency and democratic accountability for actions at organizations such as the World Bank. He is keen on avoiding that kind of situation with other powers. Nye takes the line on globalization that you might expect from an establishment centrist. While Nye recognizes this probably won¶t satisfy everyone. especially the radical left. and that citizens might have better opportunities to influence those decisions.
by this unwieldy and counterproductive arrangement. America keeps itself in the news in a negative manner due to the annual rapes of young Okinawan girls committed by American servicemen. many take issue with Nye¶s notion of the American national interest -and his assumption that advancing the American national interest is in the interest of the world at large. for example. This entails both the United States maintaining a military presence in Asia (predominantly on the island of Okinawa) and the United States continuing to exert influence over Japan in international relations. is engendering a ³blowback´ -.´ Imperial overstretch is where an empire (like the United States) tries to project power into too many places. people looking for a role for the American military (or even ³soft power´) will probably find an indispensable role for it. Critics of this policy. However. security relationship. if you go looking for enemies. The mainstream left criticizes Nye¶s optimism about the positive influence of American soft power and the stabilizing character of the American military presence overseas. Johnson argued in his 2000 book of the same name. Take. This type of self-justifying behavior. The American military bases on the island are the subjects of constant protests from the locals. Just look at Okinawa. Perhaps there is a reason that Henry Kissinger has praised Nye despite their differences? IN CONCLUSION It¶s always difficult to analyze a scholar¶s impact while that scholar is still producing materials ± especially when that scholar is as prolific as Nye continues to be. and any military utility of these bases is speculative at best. Even open-minded. critics say. Volume 9 Page 95 CRITICS OF NYE Critics of Nye fall into several different categories. As the old Chinese proverb goes. Similarly. on too many fronts. Nye is a staunch defender of the Japan-U. For example. including the Japan Policy Research Institute (headed by the noted Asian scholar Chalmers Johnson) argue that the American military presence is more destabilizing than anything.´ No matter how you slice it. critics would say that the lens he uses to evaluate such phenomena is fundamentally corrupted. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. even if the ³soft power´ phenomenon is true. and he continues to write for the most influential periodicals in print and on-line. and that Nye misanalyses available data from polls and opinion surveys. thus preventing a war that is damaging to American (and world) interests. Johnson argues. not enhanced. the JPRI and Johnson claim that the American military presence overseas.S. The difference between Nye and his critics is that Nye believes American influence is generally benign or positive. Further left. it is possible to sketch out the general precepts that Nye values ± and to watch as his thinking continues to evolve.S. His most recent book was just published this year. There is no better example of this blowback. American credibility is diminished. They have a common denominator -the term ³power. While Nye might say that the United States should continue to maintain a forward presence in Asia in order to prevent a power vacuum in the region. that the arrangement is contributing to ³imperial overstretch´ rather than ³soft power.S. Instead. It is more likely.wcdebate. No great radical thought here: everyone from the establishment to Noam Chomsky agrees on that. you will probably find them.-Japan relationship. liberal internationalist thinkers like Nye -. and in Japan particularly. than the U. according to Johnson.com .are still trapped by the paradigm of American imperialism in the view of these critics.unintended and unpredictable consequences which threaten security instead of enhancing it. you can be sure this scholar will have something to say about it. This lens seeks threats in the world for the United States to solve. Nye¶s defense of the U. serves to perpetuate the hegemonic imperialism of the United States just as much as the more realpolitik theorists.-Japan arrangement might be just such an example of overstretch.who take a broader view of the American national interest -. the distinction between soft power and hard power. Where there is a foreign policy crisis that affects the United States. critics say. the United States is going to be extending its influence on the world in a manner designed to advance its interests.
Joseph S. Joseph S.: Brookings Institution Press. 2002. Number 1.html. (New York: The Free Press.´ CURRENT (September 1999).jpri. http://www. January 1998. Jr.C. JPRI CRITIQUE. http://www. Joseph S. ³Military Deglobalization?´ FoREIGN POLICY (Jan.uk/Print/0. Jr. GOVERNANCE AMID BIGGER. THE OBSERVER. Keohane]. Jr..html. ³Globalization: What's New? What's Not? (And So What?)´ [co-authored with Robert O. Nye. Nye.. Donahue (Washington. August 2001) Nye.org/jpri/public/crit5. Nye.. Jr. NUCLEAR ETHICS. Joseph S... 1986). Joseph S. ³The US and Europe: Continental Drift?´ INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS (January 2000). UNDERSTANDING INTERNATIONAL CONFLICTS: AN INTRODUCTION TO THEORY AND HISTORY. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.. co-edited with Philip D. Jr. accessed May 1. Bound to Lead: THE CHANGING NATURE OF AMERICAN POWER. (New York: Longman. 1985).. THE PARADOX OF AMERICAN POWER: WHY THE WORLD'S ONLY SUPERPOWER CAN'T GO IT ALONE (New York: Oxford University Press. Nye. Joseph S. 1997).4384507.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Nye. Joseph S. co-edited with Elaine Ciulla Kamarck (Hollis Publishing. 3d ed. coauthored with Graham Allison and Albert Carnesale (New York: Norton. Nye. (New York: Basic Books.. 2001). 1990). Zelikow and Davic C. ³Redefining America's National Interest: The Complexity of Values.3858. Nye.co. 2000. Jr. Joseph S.. Joseph S.. accessed May 5. Nye. Jr. co-edited with John D. FOREIGN POLICY (spring 2000). 1999) Nye..com . DOVES AND OWLS: AN AGENDA FOR AVOIDING NUCLEAR WAR. 2002. Jr. March 31.observer. Nye.com? Governance in A Networked World. GOVERNANCE IN A GLOBALIZING WORLD. HAWKS. Joseph S. democracy.. Jr. Joseph S. Joseph S. 2002. Joseph S. Jr.wcdebate. Volume V. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.1.00. WHY PEOPLE DON¶T TRUST GOVERNMENT. Jr. Nye. D. Jr. 2000). Volume 9 Page 96 BIBLIOGRAPHY Japan Policy Research Institute. Jr. January 2002) Nye.. King (Cambridge: Harvard University Press.. BETTER MARKETS (Brookings Institution Press.-Feb. Joseph S. Nye. Jr.
Protest organizers such as Lori Wallach attributed half the success of the Seattle coalition to "the notion that the democracy deficit in the global economy is neither necessary nor acceptable.3858. Jr. the Soviet Union lost much of its soft power after it invaded Hungary and Czechoslovakia. Volume 9 Page 97 SOFT POWER AND DEMOCRACY PROMOTION ARE INCREASINGLY KEY 1. March 31.html. However. Washington. http://www. pluralism. and the Scandinavian states have political clout that is greater than their military and economic weight because of their support for international aid and peace-keeping. 2002.. Nye. economic. http://www. Imperious policies that utilised Soviet hard power actually undercut its soft power.3858. accessed May 1. Soft power is not simply the reflection of hard power. 2002. whereas others accept the benefits of international markets but worry that globalization is destroying democracy. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.military. And countries like the Canada. FOREIGN AFFAIRS. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. THE OBSERVER. and soft . It is becoming difficult for international economic organizations to meet without attracting crowds of protesters decrying globalization. 2002.4384507. These protesters are a diverse lot. 2002.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Quebec City. environmentalists concerned about ecological degradation and anarchists who object to all forms of international regulation. coming mainly from rich countries. http://www.. 3. and autonomy. Jr.. Conversely. leadership in the information revolution and soft power will become more important in the mix.00. Jr. They have included trade unionists worried about losing jobs and students who want to help the underdeveloped world gain them.00. accessed May 2. SOFT POWER DOESN'T DEPEND ON HARD POWER Joseph S. Nye. if current economic and social trends continue. GLOBALIZATION SHOULD BE MORE DEMOCRATIC Joseph S.uk/Print/0.3858.uk/Print/0. Nye. Some reject corporate capitalism. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. are industrial economies analogous to parts of the West in the mid-twentieth century.uk/Print/0.co. These dimensions of power give a strong advantage to the United States and Europe. THE OBSERVER. all three sources of power . finding some way to address its perceived democratic deficit should become a high priority. In such a variegated world. Seattle.html.observer.observer. Power in the global information age is becoming less coercive among advanced countries.4384507.foreignaffairs.C.com .co. Some protesters claim to represent poor countries but simultaneously defend agricultural protectionism in wealthy countries. 4.observer. Of all their complaints. even though its economic and military resources continued to grow. accordingly. Nye. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.. India. July/August 2001. Other countries. such as China. SOFT POWER IS MORE IMPORTANT NOW THAN EVER Joseph S. the Netherlands. 2002. http://www. Much of Africa and the Middle East remains locked in pre-industrial agricultural societies with weak institutions and authoritarian rulers. PLURALISM AND AUTONOMY INCREASE SOFT POWER Joseph S. Prague. accessed May 1. and Brazil. 2002.html. THE OBSERVER. accessed May 1.wcdebate. 2002.. But most of the world does not consist of post-industrial societies. and their coalition has not always been internally consistent. and those whose credibility is enhanced by their domestic and international performance.remain relevant.4384507. those with the most access to multiple channels of communication. 2. Jr. and that limits the transformation of power. LIBERALISM. The countries that are likely to gain soft power are those closest to global norms of liberalism." For globalization's supporters. this last concern is key. March 31. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. March 31. The Vatican did not lose its soft power when it lost the Papal States in Italy in the nineteenth century.00.html. D.co.org/articles/Nye0701.
. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be. p.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. No one knows for certain what China's future will be. 2002. 1998.´ June 22. Nye. Jr. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be.´ June 22. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be. he argued that such a course would make the world more dangerous. Three times in two weeks. ISOLATING OTHER COUNTRIES IS BAD POLICY Joseph S. p. Nye. Jr. If we treat China as an enemy now. we are guaranteeing ourselves an enemy. Democrats looking forward to the year 2000. split over how to handle human rights during Clinton's trip.nyu.nyu. 2002. 3. But the current debate between containment and engagement is too simple. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Nye. 2002.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. a crude policy of containment would not work. particularly given the fact that nationalism is rapidly replacing communism as the dominant ideology among the Chinese people. 1998.html. Containment has three fatal flaws. and illegal technology transfers to build campaign issues. np. p. In an election year. containment is mistaken because it discounts the possibility that China can evolve to define its interests as a responsible power. http://www. Only if China's future behavior becomes more aggressive could such a coalition be formed.html. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be. Clinton defended his trip in a recent speech. Moreover. only China can produce an effective containment policy. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government. Jr. 1998. historians have known that great wars are often caused by the rise of new powers and the fears such change creates in established powers. the House of Representatives rebuked the president over China. but it makes no sense to throw away the more benign possibilities at this point.´ June 22. np. Nye. http://www.. http://www. while engagement can be reversed if China changes for the worse. 2002. it exaggerates current and future Chinese strength.wcdebate. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government.html. Pessimists about China's future and about America's continuing strength argue for a policy of containment analogous to our response to the Soviet Union after World War II. New powers can be accommodated if they can be persuaded to define their interests in responsible ways. accessed May 3. A POLICY OF CONTAINMENT SIMPLY WILL NOT WORK Joseph S. China's neighbors do not see it as a current threat in the way the Soviet Union's neighbors did during the Cold War. China lacks the capacity to project military power much beyond its borders. America's edge will continue to persist. Washington's current hysteria about China is largely driven by domestic politics.html. accessed May 3.. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government. p. which had an expansionist ideology and conventional military superiority in Europe. http://www. Second. Ever since Thucydides and the ancient Greeks.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. First. the United States could not now develop a coalition to contain China even if we tried.com . as a quick survey of Asian capitals makes clear. Republicans seize on allegations of campaign finance scandals. accessed May 3. I agree. For one thing. In that sense.nyu. CONTAINMENT HAS THREE FATAL FLAWS Joseph S.nyu. EVEN IF CHINA RISES AS A GREAT POWER. Third. Unlike the Soviet Union. in the new dimensions of military strength in the information age.´ June 22. accessed May 3. 2. WE CAN ACCOMODATE THEM Joseph S.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. Jr. Volume 9 Page 98 ISOLATION AND CONTAINMENT DON¶T WORK IN POLICY-MAKING 1. Containment is likely to be irreversible.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. Disagreeing with those who want to isolate China. 1998. It would be a pity if domestic politics caused Americans to lose sight of our long-term strategic interest in East Asia. 4. That is the overarching question the United States faces in its relations with China.. But it is not true in every case. np. np. Isolating other countries is bad policy.
More ancient still. and at a greater philosophic remove.org/2-2/whunt. No.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. quantifiable and direct while µsoft¶ power was subjective. He implies that it is superior to µhard¶ power because it relies on uncommanded loyalties. In this context. This was observed in the tension between realpolitik and idealism which analysts have long detected in America¶s relations with other powers. relies on the force of ideas rather than the force of arms. µSoft¶ power was associated with the relative strength of the American economy in relation to its competitors. Nye and Owens (1996) examine this from a geopolitical perspective. 2. Nye clearly sees µsoft¶ power as the way of the future. as did advances in communications technology. or to be more precise. it was further assumed. Entrepreneurial dynamism. p. The first was readily understandable because it spoke to the traditional role of the state which was to provide for security of the person as well as the security of property. it approximates an anglo-American form of capitalism.) Assumed here was a technologically-driven view of American intervention. JANUS HEAD Vol. had given the United States a "dominant battlespace knowledge"-. No.cfm. Mount Allison University. situational awareness of military field operations exceeds that of all other nations combined.. in areas where there is not an obvious national interest at stake. direct broadcasting and a high speed µsystem of systems. with coercive measures on one side of the divide and co-operative ones on the other. put many of the beliefs about µsurgical¶ intervention. In the study of transnational relations. NYE¶S SOFT POWER JUST SEEKS TO PROJECT CAPITALISM Wayne Hunt. Mount Allison University. p. No. in his phrase. a µparadigm shift¶ as some enthusiasts would have it. np. In his view of the world there is a subtle but implicit business orientation in which the notion of µsoft¶ power takes on entrepreneurial boldness. 2. JANUS HEAD Vol. real-time. (Operation Allied Force. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. an idealized version of what this form of capitalism represents. and on the other there were those who looked to what ought to be. "a force multiplier in American diplomacy.janushead.. The terms originate with Joseph S. unquantifiable and indirect. the strategic balance between µhard¶ and µsoft¶ power has been much commented upon. µSoft¶ power. accessed May 1.org/2-2/whunt. by contrast. µhard¶ power was about ends and the bottom-line criteria necessary to achieve those ends while µsoft¶ power was about process and the means to an end. insisting that it can be a force for good throughout the world.wcdebate. Fall.janushead.cfm. Jr. 1999. http://www. 2. accessed May 1. 2. Allied to this was a bifurcated view of the nature of public action. Thus µsoft¶ power can work in tandem with µhard¶ power. As such it allows for the free play of creative instincts. 1999. 4. by contrast. was tied to the ability to innovate. Volume 9 Page 99 NYE¶S NOTION OF SOFT POWER IS WRONG 1. His concern is with the present and the way in which the future can be brought to the present. 2002. the state-sanctioned application of force comes under the definition of µhard¶ power. 2. According to Nye. On the one hand there were those who engaged with the world as it is. This assertion rested on the strategic argument that America¶s capacity for accurate. 2.org/2-2/whunt. accessed May 1. was the contrast between authority and liberty.cfm. In Nye¶s writings this longer scholarly tradition goes unremarked upon. http://www.as Operation Desert Storm and Operation Desert Fox presumably demonstrated. Fall. 2. 2002." Space-based surveillance. In short. np. p. Mount Allison University. Fall 1999. to the test. 2002. µHard¶ power was objective. SOFT POWER STILL DEFENDS AMERICAN TECHNOSTRATEGIC INTERVENTION Wayne Hunt.com . as.¶ he argued. The second seemed to indicate a larger transformation. NYE¶S VIEW OF SOFT POWER IGNORES HISTORY Wayne Hunt. The comparative dimension was critically important. np.. Involved as well were competing conceptions of political community.janushead. JANUS HEAD Vol. Nye. http://www. Mainstream Hollywood movies as well as sophisticated advertising techniques came into this category. Included in this first definition are the ethical values which have been injected into the international arena by a number of mediating institutions. as do the requisite material conditions necessary to sustain this force. But on closer inspection these categories seemed to take on an older dimension.
AND JAPAN Japan Policy Research Institute.there are more options for our country to follow and more spokespeople to advocate them. aspirations that would not surprise any reasonably studious 15-year-old. So we get nuggets such as "countries that are well-placed in terms of soft power do better. one of the principal architects of last year's revised Security Treaty. 2002. 2002. Security relationship"-40. so they say. Security Treaty. Both authors argue that we cannot retreat from most or all of our present involvements. Most likely." JPRI's reading of the same statistics is far less sanguine.com . Number 1. JPRI CRITIQUE. That may not have been how it seemed at the time. Today. http://www. respondents gave the Middle East top billing.S.html.S. 2002. Confusing situations produce squadrons of deconfusers.S. p. so that this should be taken as the basis for decision.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.-JAPAN RELATIONSHIP IS FLAWED Japan Policy Research Institute. perhaps even a superduper power. Feb. 3. it should tell us that we have become an unwelcome army of occupation rather than of liberation. Volume V. B1.S.jpri.jpri. Only 26% of the U. In some respects. In Japan. 69% of the Japanese named the Korean Peninsula. 982 responded. outvote their 'guests' by two to one in calling for a reduction of troops must tell us something. uncertain economic trends and many other crosscurrents -. Volume 9 Page 100 NYE¶S FOREIGN POLICY THINKING IS FLAWED 1. of course. There is a further statistic that should give both sides pause.1. investment adviser. Volume V. in a world with such diverse developments -Muslim hostility. respondents think that the U. for failing to make up our mind. and that if security is the air we breathe (to use Professor Nye's tired analogy). 1. military presence reduced. increased Chinese potency. whereas 58% of U. he argues that it is not just hard power (guns.S. these books definitely differ. Moreover. Joseph Nye. matters are much harder to figure out. While approximately half of both Japanese and U. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH. The latter's little treatise is long on cliches and short on substance. January 1998. http://www. military presence in Asia should be maintained-which Joseph Nye cites as evidence of "the broad public support in both countries for the reaffirmation of the Japan-U.4% of the Americans want the U. JPRI CRITIQUE.org/jpri/public/crit5. is that Mead has written a valuable book while Nye's effort is feeble.1. When respondents were asked which nations or regions they believed might pose a military threat to their own country. NYE¶S EFFORTS AT EXPLAINING THE POST-SEPTEMBER 11 WORLD ARE FEEBLE Joseph Losos. money) but also soft power (what anybody else calls influence) that counts. The chief difference. or simply drifting from one crisis to the next. But in working out our strategy. to put the matter bluntly. tried to put a positive spin on the poll's results. and professors Joseph Nye and Walter Mead have come forward to explicate our condition and prescribe programs of policy.952 people were interviewed.. accessed May 5. NYE SEVERELY MISANALYZES THE DATA ± U. Thus. our freedom to do just what we want is limited. 27. these books are similar. January 1998. respondents believed that the Korean Peninsula posed a military threat.S.S." Throughout the book there are tables that propose desirable projects. accessed May 5.S. the air surrounding Japan's American bases is decidedly unhealthy.S.org/jpri/public/crit5. and the fact that the 'hosts. While he acknowledged "some perception gaps between the two countries on military cooperation. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate. and this is especially so now that we have entered the Age of Terror and anti-terror. but despite the immense might that that implies. is in itself a choice.' the Japanese. Last November 30. Both make the same basic assumption: The United States is the world's only superpower. the Yomiuri published the results of an opinion poll it had commissioned from the Gallup organization concerning Japanese and American attitudes toward the Japan-U. but commentators are notorious hindsight experts." he professed to believe that the poll reveals "Japan and the United States share common interests in the Asia-Pacific region. Number 1. NYE IS WRONG ABOUT COMMON INTERESTS BETWEEN U. and a rather bad one. These are sizeable percentages. 2. In an accompanying article. ST.S. planes.9% of the Japanese and 20. mainly over details for implementing new defense cooperation guidelines. So much for some of those shared common interests. Yet we must choose.html. in the U.
I will conclude with some thoughts on using Ralph Nader¶s writings in debate rounds. in fact. He attempted to get the administration to ban the spraying of DDT on campus trees. He has been a thorn in the side of corporate power and governmental corruption for nearly forty years. Guided by such values. After exploring his life. but wishes he were not. At the time. Ralph Nader recalls. environmental perils. He researched automobile safety anyway. The book contained a theme that. Ralph Nader had closely read the classic journalistic muckrakers of his day as well as several years of the Congressional Record. from his student activist days to his two presidential runs. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. he entered Princeton University. By 1965. By age 14. ²Ralph Nader. This essay will explore both the philosophical foundations and the practical political implications of Ralph Nader¶s work and thought. and more than twice that amount of permanent disabilities incurred in automobile accidents. took issue with the assumption. finding these endeavors unsuccessful. we can better use our wealth and power to benefit all Americans. he had expanded the article into a devastating book. Lebanese immigrants who owned a restaurant in the small town of Winstead. Applied beyond our borders. but wishes there were others like him. The automobile industry spent millions in "public service" propaganda blaming "the nut behind the wheel" for auto fatalities. and so on. would encourage patrons at his restaurant to participate in informal political debates. where he would have the opportunity to test his father's enthusiasm for public protest. Ralph Nader is one of a kind. and then his political project. Nathra. from the preface to Crashing the Party Among contemporary political figures. people who devote their lives to working for reforms and exposing corruption within all power centers. assets and conditions are never for sale. he wishes that contemporary American politics was full of Ralph Naders.wcdebate. is almost uniquely attributable to Nader in American politics: corporations habitually blame consumers for defects in their products. just as all perpetrators tend to blame the victims. can provide wondrous opportunities to improve our country. At age 17. and like most immigrants they experienced some dissonance upon coming into the country and witnessing both great acts of public good and objectionable acts of elitist exploitation.com . Nader. and simultaneously brings other radical thought into the mainstream. Connecticut. Such policies strengthen noncommercial values.000 automobile deaths every year in America. "The Safe Car You Can't Buy. Nader entered Harvard Law School in 1955." in THE NATION. UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED: THE DESIGNED-IN DANGERS OF THE AMERICAN AUTOMOBILE. He had to do most of this on his own. He immediately developed an aversion to the corporate orientation of both the courses and the professors' ideologies. there were nearly 50. as Harvard Law School didn't offer such courses and the professors were enthusiastically uninterested. and in 1959 published his first article. and infectious diseases that threaten to jeopardize directly our own national security as well as that of the rest of the world. and. and justified his position with painstaking research and eloquent prose. Nader wanted to study the legal issues involving food production and automobile safety. came to the defense of small business owners being abused by larger businesses. Nader believed--and would continue to believe--that car companies simply didn't believe safety was worth the cost. Nathra and Rose had strong opinions about democracy. just as the rich blame the poor for being poor.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Volume 9 Page 101 RALPH NADER Great societies must have public policies that declare which rights. An excellent student. which. of course. resigned himself to studying Chinese and preparing for law school. these values can help us astutely wage peace and address the extreme poverty. in a larger sense. oppression. I will try to explain his philosophy. illiteracy. nourished by public enlightenment and civic participation. Nader radicalizes the Jeffersonian tradition of democratic participation. NADER¶S LIFE AND WORK Ralph Nader was born in 1934 to Rose and Nathra Nader.
innovative development in American politics at the time.. draws upon the American political tradition in much the same way as any social movement. when he founded Common Cause." ²Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter Ralph Nader is not a philosopher. should corporations be held to the same standard as politicians? There are several sensible reasons for this. fought for increased water quality. it is also a contemporary application of Jeffersonian democracy to conditions he and the other founders could not necessarily have foreseen: The inspiration came directly from Thomas Jefferson. There are two basic philosophical premises behind Nader¶s politics. Of course. in mandatory seat belts and air bags).´ despite the best efforts of conservatives and moderates to paint him as such. in a democracy. (http://www. reforms in the Food and Drug Administration. Nader has continued to organize grass roots activists against corporate power and irresponsibility. Bush in 2000. By campaigning to the "left" of Gore politically. (http://bostonreview. author of the famous Federalist No. albeit reluctantly. It represented a creative attempt to reclaim Jefferson's faith in "the people themselves. In fact. This is Jeffersonian democracy at its most extreme. Nor could James Madison. and shareholders. the democratic "experiment" is about checking excessive power.wcdebate.edu/BR18. consumers. Nader spent the rest of the 1960s expanding his project to include the creation of various task forces and groups of young advocates dedicated to consumer safety and rights. enduring change will require an institutionalized shift of power from corporations and government to ordinary Americans. who had written. could not have envisioned how moneyed special interests. indistinguishable from typical liberal democrats. First and most importantly. it is argued. Nader's "Raiders. While other activists dedicated themselves to ending the Vietnam War. procedural complexities and the brute size of the nation would erode the sinews of government accountability. Education and Welfare. most contemporary followers of politics identify Nader with his 1996 and 2000 Presidential runs on the Green Party ticket. contrary to his predictions.html) THE PHILOSOPHICAL BASIS OF NADER¶S POLITICS "In a democracy. Many hold him uniquely responsible for Democratic candidate Al Gore's loss to George W. In 1969 he and his comrades formed the Center for Study of Responsive Law.mit.´ and as such. based on their tendency towards theory at the expense of action. some decades later. of course. simply a distrust)."the public interest" -was a bold. which he exploited in order to launch a career of public service and anti-corporate activism. This is why it is grossly over simplistic to view Nader as merely a proponent of greater government control.html) Nader¶s second philosophical premise is that power tends to corrupt unless it is checked by a wide array of citizens.com . Nader¶s philosophy can be summed up as ³citizen empowerment. official secrecy. and a plethora of other causes." as they came to be called. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." But Jefferson. but. the highest office is the office of citizen.2/nader. as the quotation below explains. would have a similar idea in 1970. a former Secretary of the Department of Health. First. workers. A statement Nader made in 1993 sums up his political perspective: What neither Clinton. then. Because of UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED. the people are the ultimate authorities.org/history/bollier_chapter_3. Why. virtually none have a serious agenda to strengthen Americans in their key roles as voters. 10 essay. Nader took voters away who would have voted for the centrist Democrat Gore.. The creation of a citizens' lobby to represent the people as a whole -.nader. Throughout the next thirty years. and General Motors' attempt to discredit Nader assured his fame. taxpayers. have predicted how competing special-interest factions might not yield the public good. Since the 2000 campaign. Volume 9 Page 102 The book launched the consumer rights movement. He is also not a ³radical revolutionary. he seems to have an inherent distrust of academic intellectuals (not a hostility. "I know of no safer depository of the ultimate powers of society but the people themselves. While politicians have now made an art of populist symbolism. Nader believes that ordinary people must make both corporations and governments more accountable.nor most other Democratic Party proponents of change seem to realize is that significant. Congress enacted tougher automobile safety laws (eventually culminating. a good government lobby that focused primarily on procedural reforms such as campaign finance reform and government ethics." John Gardner.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.
Nader is none of these.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. He does not call for the end of corporations or market economies. sellers need consumers. 4. He sees the democratic process as little more than a joke if elections come down to who has the most money. NADER¶S POLITICAL PRINCIPLES ³When I was in law school. the kinds of "checks" which defenders of corporate power claim exist are not really effective. and frequently more power than. and also increase the number of things people vote for and against. citizens do not have the kind of information that voters in political elections possess. wealth is a social creation: capitalists need laborers. referred to Nader as an anti-capitalist. Facilitate voter initiatives: Nader wants to make it easier to vote. a communist. p. are available to the highest bidder. 56 Over the past two presidential races. So corporations need to be accountable because corporations could. and increasing public financing of elections. Reclaim the public airwaves: Nader is very concerned that radio and television waves. Finally. 1999. 3. The classic argument is that citizens "vote with their dollars. many on the anti-capitalist left see Nader as wanting to "save" corporations and capitalism by forcing reforms that smart corporate executives would favor as a way to make themselves look better. and the resources extracted from the earth do not belong to any one individual in some a priori sense. rather. most recently. 2. Ralph Nader has tended to stress the following points as a political program: 1. we had a joke that at Harvard they teach you how to distort the law of contracts and contract the law of torts. giant corporations. limiting the amount of money people can spend on political campaigns. sometimes stretching centuries into the future. and discourage ³career politicians´ who tend to become cynical and greedy. In fact. literally. not exist without the collective masses that sustain them. Second. Little did I know then that in 1999 this very thing would be occurring. over the past few decades. Some less-than-eloquent critics have. a socialist. Since most corporate decisions are made behind closed doors. Reform our corrupt campaign finance system: Nader is a strong proponent of viable campaign finance reform. and since advertising does not normally reveal the truth about the production process.wcdebate. He was instrumental in encouraging ³public access´ laws Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." Aside from the fact that this means people with a million dollars get a million votes. Wealth is not generated through the individual actions of individual innovators. Such an argument assumes what many capitalist apologists assume without proof: that citizens possess near-perfect information about public and private transactions and the effects of corporate decisions.´ ±Nader.com . And. checks must exist on corporate power because the classic individualist metaphors of entrepreneurship and hard work hardly do justice to the corporate juggernauts. even a Stalinist. All of these reasons provide sound philosophical justification for an increased watchdog role on the part of concerned citizens. and the use of referendums and initiatives to increase public control over the lawmaking process. They can make decisions that have far-reaching environmental and economic effects. torts and contracts. which should belong to everyone. "above" the laws of most nations. Corporate law firms are composed of lawyers who have forgotten what it means to be a professional and who are themselves losing their independence. Set term limits for Members of Congress: Term limits allow the system to constantly rejuvenate and reinvent itself. They can control resources and make large-scale decisions about production and distribution. to institutionalized. He is in favor of more accessible voter registration. the multinational status of many corporations makes them. who warned about corporate law firms losing their independence to corporate clients by becoming mere adjuncts to the corporation's priorities. Term limits would increase opportunity for ordinary citizens to participate in government. literally. They are not heeding the warnings of Justice Louis Brandis and Henry Stimpson and Ella Herue. any elected or appointed political leader. We are losing the two great pillars of American law. WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF LAW AND POLICY. Volume 9 Page 103 Corporations have as much power as.
Democrats. but the Green Party's current plans.com . we should settle for checks on that drift rather than try to get everything.´ we end up with nothing (or. his ideas clearly include tougher regulations. Even many non-libertarians favor measures such as tax incentives rather than regulatory schemes to make corporations behave better. Most of these platforms stem from the overarching desire on Ralph Nader¶s part to increase citizen empowerment. Bush. could frustrate Democrats in Wisconsin and around the country even more. 2002) The argument is that we must be willing to compromise. but if they are threatened with punishment. to accept some of what we want. and more restrictions on what people can do with their money. including candidate Jim Young for governor. say Greens end up hurting the very causes that they support by playing the spoiler in many races.wcdebate. It places in question Nader¶s whole philosophy of stubborn and dogmatic insistence that only his platform is viable and democratic.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. shareholders possess minimal power compared to the day-to-day power of corporate executives. It is much more fruitful to concentrate on the pragmatic implications of Nader¶s beliefs than to question whether democracy and citizen empowerment are good things. many people are angry that Nader¶s dogmatic and ³purist´ run for the presidency in 2000 supposedly cost the Democrats the White House. while Gore and the Democrats may not have been as faithful to Nader¶s ideals as the Greens were. Democrats respond that. At present. Of course." In Wisconsin. Although Nader is not simply a pro-government liberal. The idea is that people respond favorably to carrots (rewards). Along the same lines. especially liberal Democrats. One must assert and prove not only that capitalism is desirable. if successful. and often makes things considerably worse. Green Party activists say they have learned a lot since 2000. libertarians claim. as recent events demonstrate: The Capital Times (5/21. " Ralph Nader's 2000 Green Party presidential run angered many Democrats. The problem here is not merely one election. but also that elitism is desirable. or voting for Nader: Sam Smith is right when he points out that the liberal establishment in the Democratic Party--which includes the current congressional leaders of the party--''yawned as the Clintons disassembled their own cause and became incensed when Ralph Nader dared to defend it. He believes that ordinary people are not stupid. This is because those people believe that. many people advocate pollution trading permits rather than strong regulations against pollution. May 21. and they are planning to run a candidate for every statewide office in Wisconsin. 2002) Another source of objection to Nader¶s ideas is found in libertarian philosophies. May 7. "the Green Party has a dozen chapters around the state. as some would say in reference to Bush. since they alienated the voters who ended up either not voting at all. Volume 9 Page 104 requiring cable companies to devote some of their stations to public use. at a time when many citizens seem to be drifting to the right. 5. they simply find ways around the tough regulations rather than ways to comply with them. He would like to see much more of this. Regulations fail. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. especially when they are given a chance to participate in the large-scale affairs that determine so much in their lives. worse than nothing!). Nader supporters responded that the Democrats had themselves to blame for the election loss. This is an ongoing argument. OBJECTIONS TO NADER To answer Ralph Nader's underlying political philosophy is difficult. Steverman) reports. Create shareholder democracy: Nader wants shareholders in corporations to have greater power over corporate decision-making. if we hold out for ³everything. only four of which existed before the 2000 election.'' (VILLAGE VOICE. they were still comparatively closer to those ideals than were the Republicans and George W." (THE BULLETIN'S FRONTRUNNER. because people respond better to self-management than hierarchical management. Libertarians generally believe that regulation of the market never yields the results intended. To begin with. higher taxes for corporations.
One side argues that capitalism is necessary because it maximizes individual freedom. Greater participation by third parties and citizens¶ movements can help this happen. Nader eschews elitism. Debaters may even be able to argue that the ideas of people like Nader are essential to capitalism¶s survival. in the strongest democratic traditions. Democracy must be participatory: More than any other idea. not merely philosophically. government is the people. since it¶s what we have. either-or. it remains to be seen whether advocates of Nader¶s ideas can articulate the sense in which citizen empowerment differs from traditional advocacy of government intervention. and that we should explore those alternatives by broadening the political arena. Ralph Nader inspires three main ideas with immediate and far-reaching implications on value debate: Capitalism can exist with checks and balances: Traditional value debates about capitalism and its alternatives tend to be very black-and-white. and even update their files with the daily news reports about Nader and his movement.wcdebate.com . exploitation and imperialism. Were it up to him. most of the objections to Nader¶s ideas work well within the general framework of libertarianism and belief in a minimal state. Writing about a living person is a lot different than writing about a long-dead philosopher. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. while the other side emphasizes the problems of selfishness. and that lesson might itself serve as a reminder that alternatives must be pragmatic. but with many historical examples of the disasterous effects of unchecked power among governments and corporations. his stubborn insistence that the people not compromise with those in power cost him a great deal of credibility in 2000. However. debaters might argue that political and economic alternatives exist. After all. Ralph Nader continues to make news every day. but he argues that. since such ideas prevent the excesses that fuel the anti-capitalism movement. we should keep it in check. Debaters wishing to explore more about Ralph Nader can do many things: read his books.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. He might also open the door to more radical alternatives to the kind of politics and economics we seem destined to accept in the status quo. it would be citizens making the news instead of corporate news agencies. Unlike so many of our sources. Alternatives to capitalism and globalization can be explored through a widening of the political arena: Conversely. Volume 9 Page 105 Overall. CONCLUSION Ralph Nader is currently America¶s loudest and most passionate advocate of citizen participation and greater corporate accountability. and not just theoretically attractive. read commentary about him. IMPLICATIONS FOR DEBATE In my mind. Nader is no fan of capitalism. Ralph Nader advocates the notion of citizen participation and a breaking down of the distinctions between government and people. At the same time.
1972). 1982). Nader. TAMING THE GIANT CORPORATION (New York: Norton. Ralph. Katherine. Dan M. Ralph. Isaac. Ralph Nader Congress Project. Nader.] (New York: Grossman. Ralph. 1996). 1974). Hays. Nader. Nader. 2000). Ralph. Nader. THE CONSUMER AND CORPORATE ACCOUNTABILITY (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK (Chicago: Regnery Gateway. 1975). Ralph. McCarry. 1977). Nader. NADER AND THE POWER OF EVERYMAN (New York: Grosset & Dunlap.: Prentice-Hall 1972). Nader. Ralph. THE MADNESS ESTABLISHMENT: RALPH NADER¶S STUDY GROUP REPORT ON THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF MENTAL HEALTH (New York: Grossman Publishers.wcdebate. UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED: THE DESIGNED-IN DANGERS OF THE AMERICAN AUTOMOBILE [Expanded ed. 1997).com . Franklin D. Burt. RULING CONGRESS: A STUDY OF HOW THE HOUSE AND SENATE RULES GOVERN THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS (New York: Grossman Publishers. Ralph. 1976). Charles.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 1972). NO CONTEST: CORPORATE LAWYERS AND THE PERVERSION OF JUSTICE IN AMERICA (New York: Random House. Nader. 1973). Ralph. 1986). Volume 9 Page 106 BIBLIOGRAPHY Buckhorn. Martin's Press.J. RALPH NADER¶S PRACTICING DEMOCRACY 1997: A GUIDE TO STUDENT ACTION (New York: St. 1975). THE RALPH NADER READER (foreword by Barbara Ehrenreich (New York: Seven Stories Press. N. CITIZEN NADER (New York: Saturday Review Press. 1973). NADER: THE PEOPLE¶S LAWYER (Englewood Cliffs. CRASHING THE PARTY: TAKING ON THE CORPORATE GOVERNMENT IN AN AGE OF SURRENDER (New York: Thomas Dunne Books/St. THE BIG BOYS: POWER AND POSITION IN AMERICAN BUSINESS (New York: Pantheon Books. CORPORATE POWER IN AMERICA (New York: Grossman. Chu. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. THE MENACE OF ATOMIC ENERGY (New York: Norton. Ralph. Nader. Gorey. Robert F. 2002). Martin's Press.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 56. political activist. schools. p. artificial intelligence. subsidize companies ripping minerals from federal lands. and genetic engineering are added to the stresses of conventional chemical. mass famines. p. Smith¶s ³invisible hand´ of 1776 has been joined two centuries later by the ³invisible atom. Corporate welfare programs siphon funds from appropriate public investments. If people think more about how major business executives work. p. If we were to use the people's yardsticks to report on the state of the economy. then those executives may think harder about how their work affects people. 2000. Homelessness and poverty are affecting large numbers of families and people than ever before. I think that the level of injustice in our society is partly a reflection of expectation levels. Volume 9 Page 107 EGALITARIAN CRITERIA OF JUSTICE IS BEST 1. political activist. and marketing technologies. discounted insurance and other benefits conferred by government on business²is a function of political corruption. totaling record amounts of consumer debt.having accepted their condition and resigned. 521. political activist. The data one would use is arguably nonexistent.profits are up. If someone were to ask how much injustice exists in society. 1999. THE CRITERIA FOR JUSTICE SHOULD BE THE CONDITION OF THE POOR AND OPPRESSED Ralph Nader. perpetuate anti-competitive oligopolistic markets. bailouts. injure our national security. what Congress hears is that our economy could not be better. and public utilities are in extreme disrepair. 13 Corporate welfare²the enormous and myriad subsidies. This is very far from the way modern corporations plan to reduce risks through market power and to get the public to help pay their costs through tax breaks and other subsidies. giveaways. To introduce more managerial foresight and honesty. THE BIG BOYS. When Alan Greenspan reports to Congress every few weeks on the state of the economy. the stock market is up. WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF LAW AND POLICY. CORPORATE POWER THREATENS THE PUBLIC GOOD 1. pampered executives can distance themselves from everyday life. we would begin to see that twenty-five percent of children grow up in poverty and that this is the highest in the western world. Adam Smith knew that the ideology of the ³invisible hand´ was an idealization quite removed from market reality. 2. We are then at a point where such a question cannot be answered without a firm understanding of our past.´ the ³invisible currency. WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF LAW AND POLICY.´ and the ³invisible bureaucrat. tax loopholes. he uses oligarchic indicators that imply the economy could hardly be better . p. Yet. and weaken our democracy. Poor or oppressed persons are often downtrodden .´ the ³invisible pollutant. If the larger society has a higher expectation level.wcdebate.´ Working at high levels of abstraction. debt revocations. limiting their ability to deal with reality. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. ELITE CONTROL OF THE CRITERIA FOR JUSTICE ENSURES FURTHER INJUSTICE Ralph Nader. then we become very uneasy with the state of affairs.´ the ³invisible gene. There are a record number of consumers filing bankruptcies and living beyond their means in order to subsist. how would you respond? The criteria for analyzing a just society is very primitive and unclear. loan guarantees. political activists. 1986. CAPITALISM REQUIRES CHECKS AND BALANCES Ralph Nader and William Taylor. 1999. 56. Eighty percent of the workers in the bottom eighty percent of the job force have seen their wages decrease since 1973 when adjusted for inflation. 2. enable pharmaceutical companies to gouge consumers. CORPORATE WELFARE SIPHONS FUNDS FROM OTHER PRIORITIES Ralph Nader. inflation is down. CUTTING CORPORATE WELFARE. If the oligarchy controls the yardsticks by which we measure progress and justice. then they also control agendas and that is what is happening. those at the peaks of corporate power need to have their thoughts and actions better known to the public. and unemployment is down.com . The need for distance grows more insistent every day²the mounting challenges of doomsday weapons. production. clinics.
provide a decent standard of living to their employees. political activist. citizenbased initiatives generally succeed only if they generate public debate and receive widespread support. The process by which a policy is developed and enacted often yields insights into who stands to benefit from its enactment. Secrecy. the North American Free Trade Agreement) and an expansion of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). political activist. Narrow. GLOBAL FREE TRADE UNDERMINES LOCAL.S.com . The Fortune 200¶s GATT and NAFTA agenda would make the air you breathe dirtier and the water you drink more polluted. THE CASE AGAINST FREE TRADE. Enactment of the free trade deals virtually ensures that any local. 3. multinational corporations are working hard to expand their control over the international economy and to undo vital health.´ This sort of threat is extremely powerful²communities already devastated by plant closures and a declining manufacturing base are desperate not to lose more jobs. By contrast. GLOBALIZATION UNDERMINES HEALTH. and land. 1993. 3. If you do.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. depress wage levels. in the halls of the U. safety. They are looking to circumvent the democratic process altogether. THE CASE AGAINST FREE TRADE. 1993. state. Congress. p.S. the U. An unprecedented corporate power grab is underway in global negotiations over international trade. or even at the United Nations. or limit their pollution of the air. for example. the U. will be met with the refrain. in a bold and brazen drive to achieve an autocratic far-reaching agenda through two trade agreements. Operating under the deceptive banner of ³free´ trade. and implementation of the trade agreements is designed to foreclose citizen participation or even awareness. p. AND WORKERS¶ RIGHTS Ralph Nader. p. 1993. THE ENVIRONMENT. The megacorporations are not expecting these victories to be gained in town halls. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. GLOBALIZATION HURTS DEMOCRACY AND PROMOTES AUTOCRATIC SECRECY Ralph Nader. ³You can¶t burden us like that. Capitol.wcdebate. adoption. abstruseness. called the Uruguay Round. It would cost jobs. we won¶t be able to compete. We¶ll have to close down and move to a country that offers us a more hospitable business climate. 6. corporate lobbyists roam the corridors before a budget or tax package is to be voted on. THE CASE AGAINST FREE TRADE. state offices.S. Every element of the negotiation. and environmental protections won by citizen movements across the globe in recent decades. and make workplaces less safe. political activist. AND NATIONAL SOVEREIGNTY Ralph Nader. hoping to insert a special tax exemption or subsidy in the dark of night and have it voted on before the public (or even most Congressional representatives) know it exists. and unaccountability: these are the watchwords of global trade policy-making. STATE. private interests inevitably prefer secrecy. It would destroy family farms and undermine consumer protections such as those ensuring that the food you eat is not compromised by unsanitary conditions or higher levels of pesticides and preservatives. water. Volume 9 Page 108 GLOBAL FREE TRADE HAS HORRIBLE IMPACTS 1. 2. and they know all to well from experience that threats of this sort are often carried out. 1 Citizens beware.-Mexico-Canada free trade deal (formally known as NAFTA. or even national effort in the United States to demand that corporations pay their fair share of taxes.
ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. is not considered adequate to achieve the ³public interest´ or the ³common good. economic. which has been and remains in vogue in Western thought. individualistic nation. 1982. In this regard. and it does not square with the common view of the nature of the public interest. on our daily lives. 2. Testimony is often given on behalf of the ³public interest´ before congressional committees and federal regulatory panels. and consumers.S. Burt. and their ideology would have immense impact on political and economic activities and society as a whole. away from the individual and into the hands of the government and ³public interest´ groups. But it is a radical departure from U. In some cases. p. state. This is a distinct political ideology. where more decisions will be made by a few to affect the many. NADER¶S POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY WOULD CULMINATE IN TOTALITARIANISM Dan M. 20 What is clear is that Mr. It embodies an inherent distrust of traditional political and social organizations to represent the public adequately and to wage the fight for the ³common good. Burt.com . ³PUBLIC INTEREST´ ADVOCACY UNDERMINES DEMOCRACY Dan M. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. and local governments. 1982. with its heavy reliance on individual choice. p. employers. ³Public interest´ advocacy has become one of the signs of our times.´ 2. President of Capital Legal Foundation. Burt. 1982. Mr. Government would have an especially large influence on the functioning of the economy and. Nader and his network distrust the current political and economic system in the United States. and the economic votes we make every day with our money at the cash register. Ralph Nader seeks nothing less than a transfer of power in America. 1982. 20 Instead. And it has been and would be a government they run. SEC. a new elite of un-elected. President of Capital Legal Foundation.´ NADER IS ELITIST AND TOTALITARIAN 1.´ ³Public interest´ groups seek an alternative means of influencing decision-making in both government and industry. NADER¶S ADVOCACY DESTROYS INDIVIDUAL CHOICE AND THE DEMOCRATIC PROCESS Dan M.wcdebate. and seek to change it. President of Capital Legal Foundation. p.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Volume 9 Page 109 NADER¶S PHILOSOPHY HURTS DEMOCRACY 1. ³Public interest´ advocates would become new power-brokers. at the bank. Our diverse. This most often takes the form of intervention in the regulatory processes of the federal. In sum. Nader and his groups seek a greater politicization of life in America. America would become a more centrally governed and less free. President of Capital Legal Foundation. government would probably become more authoritarian or even totalitarian by encroaching more on our private lives as workers. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. Burt. In other words. NADER¶S ADVOCACY TRANSFERS POWER FROM INDIVIDUALS TO ELITES CLAIMING TO SPEAK IN THE ³PUBLIC INTEREST´ Dan M. political tradition of the last 200 years. in turn. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. 8. They do not put much faith in the democratic process that has been America¶s unique tradition for the past 200 years²that is. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. EPA and similar agencies do²the ³public interest´ groups would appear to want more politicization of life in America. the groups elect to fight the issues out before the courts. the political votes we cast regularly at the ballot box. professional ³public interest´ advocates would acquire a substantial amount of power to make decisions in both the private and public sectors. or in the investment markets. 135 In place of our system of modified and limited individual choice and private enterprise²we certainly recognize and welcome much of what FDA. de-centralized political. and social system. p.
Everyone knows about Nader's furious opposition to global trade agreements. 2. 2000. the Nader campaign intends to raise $5 million dollars. he said.like the laws of every market economy -.corporate influence.) Similar fears led Nader to condemn South Africa's new constitution. 2. the one that ended apartheid. the product of freedom to acquire and strive and create for personal gain." (Most African countries would be delighted to attract a bit of foreign investment. Cohen. must be bad for the world. He isn't like you and me." The campaign will have similar themes to the effort of four years ago.000 votes and finished in fourth place.it grants corporations some legal status as individuals. The North American Free Trade Association treaty means "we're exporting jobs--probably about 350. 2000. had it right when he characterized the Nader reason-for-being as "irritating others for the public good. March 6. THE MILITANT. prevent patients from getting drugs that might give them a decent life and prevent a moderate who gets along with business from becoming president.000. Nader now apparently believes that whatever is good for General Motors. July 25. A-19. healthiest. NADER¶S ANTI-CORPORATE RHETORIC OVERSIMPLIFIES THE ISSUES Paul Krugman. PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. p. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. or Pfizer." Nader will invoke "the message of last year's Seattle demonstrations against the WTO. most prosperous nation in the world. p. now vying for the Reform Party presidential nomination." But you can't create a public good until you recognize the reality of a private good. PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. concentrated corporate power and the excessive disparities of wealth. Because multinational corporations go their amoral way.000" to Mexico. To block opportunities for corporate profit he is quite willing to prevent desperately poor nations from selling their goods in U. Those demonstrations were led by union officials and liberal and environmental activists. p. Newt Gingrich disgusted many people when.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Nader's 1996 campaign was marked by nationalist themes. Nader presented his campaign as a "pull to the left" for the Democratic Party. columnist. NADER IGNORES THE CONTRIBUTIONS CORPORATIONS MAKE TO OUR PROSPERITY Laurence D. That's the problem with Ralph. Professor of Economics at MIT. it seems to be not consumer protection but general hostility toward corporations. because -." At the same time.S. columnist.com . In 2000. Michael Kinsley.000 to 400. or any corporation.wcdebate. But it is less well known that he was equally adamant in opposing a bill removing barriers to Africa's exports -.I'm serious -. He complimented rightist politician Patrick Buchanan. Ralph Nader published an article attributing those same shootings to -. Professor of Economics at MIT. THE HARTFORD COURANT. October 22. 2000. Nader says he will concentrate on "democracy. C3. If you look for a unifying theme in all these causes. Volume 9 Page 110 NADER¶S ANTI-CORPORATE AGENDA IS UNDESIRABLE 1. markets. July 25. 3. although limiting his campaign spending to under $5. editor of Slate. According to the February 21 Green Party news release announcing Nader's bid. who put forward economic nationalist slogans that drew favorable comment from Buchanan. we are the happiest. But several days before Gingrich spoke.a move that Africans themselves welcomed. NADER IS A NATIONALIST WHO EXPLOITS AMERICANS¶ FEAR OF IMMIGRANTS Patrick O¶Neill. At times Nader's hostility to corporations goes completely over the edge." reads the statement. but which Nader denounced because of his fear that African companies would be "run into the ground by multinational corporations moving into local economies. p. in 1996 he "received nearly 700. in his first major speech after leaving Congress." The Green Party's press release states that "Nader's advisors claim that his campaign will help turn out the vote and could assist the Democrats in taking back Congress. NADER PRACTICES A RHETORIC OF FEAR AND OVERSIMPLIFICATION 1. because insurance companies have to say no to some doctors sometimes. 2000. NADER¶S OPPOSITION TO TRADE AGREEMENTS HURTS DEVELOPING NATIONS Paul Krugman. saying he has "learned a lot in the last few years about corporate power. A-19. he blamed liberalism for the Columbine school shootings. because chemical companies have to put their gunk somewhere.
And even then and immediately thereafter.´ Guinier¶s version of affirmative action. you didn¶t get to vote.´ Just one problem: Guinier had never advocated quota-based hiring. GUINIER¶S THOUGHT Guinier doesn¶t just talk about affirmative action ± far from it. if you can¶t vote. places dealt with the issue in a straightforward manner: if you were black. That¶s not just me being partisan. write manifold articles on the subject of race in the United States. it wasn¶t until the mid-1960s that African Americans had the right to vote. many places in the North). So the first wave of voting rights laws dealt with these Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. but it was a very useful. she OPPOSED quotas ± they went contrary to her notion of ³confirmative action. Guinier was unjustly denied her rightful post as Assistant U. they claimed.com .´ What do we learn from reading the work of Lani Guinier? What do we learn from the fact that her nomination was torpedoed? To answer the first question. which also had elections? Any democratic theory worth its salt has to acknowledge that an inability to vote equals an inability to call one¶s government a legitimate and functioning democracy. Period. including slavery. alliterated metaphor that served partisan purposes at the time. In the South (and. it isn¶t a true democracy to you. though. two: Quota Queen. Attorney General for Civil Rights because. and publish books. For them.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. a ³quota queen. to be fair. After all. Let¶s start with what white citizens of this country take as a given: voting rights. can it be said (really) that slaves were living in a functional democracy? How about a non-member of the communist party under the Soviet Union. As for the second proposition -. the politicians who control the nomination process preferred to keep the tensions under wraps.What do we learn from the fact that her nomination was torpedoed? ± we learn that being an insightful critical thinker instead of a partisan demagogue is a sure way to avoid public service at a high level. or create new forms of discrimination? These are questions without easy answers. she believed in quotas for minority hiring in order to make up for the problems caused by systematic racism for the past 200 years in this country.´ Guinier continues to teach law at Harvard Law School. the right wing said. We get to watch as one of the best legal minds in America grapples with issues to which there are no easy solution: to what extent does the pact inform today? What kind of remedies are effective for centurieslong discrimination? How can we ensure those remedies don¶t inflame the problem. In fact. Guinier's intellectual honesty made her politically unacceptable. Volume 9 Page 111 LANI GUINIER Lani Guinier was unjustly passed over in one of the most highly publicized confirmation hearings ever. such a right was not truly meaningful. we get to inspect the ideas of one of the most forward-looking thinkers on race in America. For understandable political reasons. As the woman herself said in a subsequent interview on the topic: ³Because we are in a sound-bite culture. we define you by no more than three or four words-in my case. Voting rights are the essential element of a democracy.wcdebate. She was.S. It had nothing to do with what I had written. That didn¶t stop the hounds once they had been released. right? During and prior to the Civil War. She examines all kinds of issues relevant to racial politics in this country. Now. As Mark Tushnet has written: ³Guinier's nomination to head the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division foundered because she understood those tensions and her work makes them apparent.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. The only question was how to actualize this? In the past. minorities often have a problem electing what voting rights law calls "representatives of their choice. You vote for Ralph Nader because he says he¶ll challenge corporate rule. As Tushnet notes. of course.mostly Republicans -. this ³turned out to be something between a very bad thing and a disaster for racial minorities. and you headed to the polls in Florida. So. it has another value: an instrumental value.wcdebate. The result is that you get one minority representative. Harvey Gantt. What is the solution? Some suggested establishing "majority-minority" districts so that minorities would be assured of candidates that reflected their interests. people -.discovered techniques that would guarantee the election of some members of racial minorities while actually reducing the chances that the views of those representatives would prevail in the legislature. we ought to defend it for minorities. Something between a very bad thing and a disaster. Plus. but they have the same result: the legislature has the "right number" of minority representatives. if you go to vote. Particularly as it became easy to use computer technology to draw district lines. alternatively. The Voting Rights Act Amendmnts of 1982 recognized that this was a problem. if you¶re one of the 90 percent of African Americans that voted for Al Gore. your parents (and certainly your grandparents) might remember a time when Black Americans didn¶t even have the lip-service right to vote. if the right to vote represents full citizenship. this is far from an issue we¶ve left behind. though. and stacking. and created a right to select representatives of choice. whites have gerrymandered districts so that minorities couldn¶t overwhelm the white majority and elect candidates of choice. And depending on how old there are. The thing is. Again. is that concentrating minorities in certain districts means that OTHER districts can effectively IGNORE their interests altogether. and some guy has a pit bull that snarls at you every time you approach the polls ± do you REALLY have the right to vote? Or.´ The other problem. You sue your vote to elect people who will do the things that you want done. Cracking and stacking are more complicated. the votes of minorities can be trumped by the White Folks Vote. For example. You vote for Jesse Ventura because he says he¶ll battle special interests. The techniques are known in the voting rights field as packing. is an excellent candidate who is notably NOT insane. You vote for Jesse Helms because you¶re a psychotic racist (hey. you can guarantee the election of a minority representative by packing as many members of that minority as possible into a single district. Helms despite the fact that the Black man who keeps running against him. The problem is that in other districts. it takes all kinds). Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. cracking. and a slew of representatives who owe nothing to minority constituents. Hence. indeed. Volume 9 Page 112 ³formal exclusions´ from the franchise: they FORCED states to allow Black Americans to vote. white people keep electing the aforementioned Mr.´ After all. We had to deal with it in the LAST presidential election. racial minorities are so few in number that candidates can simply disregard them. and they are regularly outvoted. and Jeb Bush¶s thuggish state troopers told you to turn around and drive home ± do you really have the right to vote? As you can see. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 made sure of that.com . imagine you are a member of a minority group (and maybe you are): are your interests being taken into account? Since white folks are the majority in many places.
it doesn¶t work that way. There would be problems with identifying these policies. what is a filibuster but a minority veto ± enacted by a minority of one.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. even though he spent 30 years trying to screw them sideways ± in a close election.com . the first of which is just logical: if the majority votes to legalize cannibalism ± or to legalize discrimination against homosexuals (as my hometown of Canby. stupid things. or political) ± because they may be the MAJORITY in four years. every interest group is up for schmoozing ± even traditional enemies. legislators can get concessions on another. but let¶s review some of the high points here. Guinier has many ideas for transformation of the current situation. not all of which involve modifying affirmative action. the tribes Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Similarly. There are a couple of reasons why. They will vote to advance their own interests. there needs to be some check on that abuse. People are self-interested. Hence. This is one major reason both parties talk about bipartisanship: they want to appeal to voters of the other political party. and that includes affirmative action. economic. why don¶t poor people just vote to take all the money from rich people through taxation? Well. a structural reform might be adopted where passing some policies might require a greater margin than a simple majority ± it might take a two-thirds majority to pass policies that could systematically have a negative effect on minorities. (³Give us labor provisions in the FTAA bill. some might say there is nothing more democratic than majority rule. Guinier borrows the title of her book from James Madison. Oregon did in the 1990s) or to do other unconstitutional. The second reason is that those are the principles the Republic was founded on. Sound radical? Ever heard of the filibuster in the Senate? That¶s an example of how. Just because you¶re in the majority now doesn¶t guarantee that you will ALWAYS be. you see things like former Washington Senator Slade Gorton cozying up to Indian tribes.´ This topic is covered in great detail in the Madison essay. Reagan was re-elected primarily with the votes of traditional Democrats. That¶s why we have three branches of government ± to stop excesses and abuses of power by those who reach past their intended authority.´) After all. for example. but because it¶s just as integral to the thinking of Lani Guinier as anything else. or we¶ll filibuster and block the bill which brings the pork barrel project to your district. So. but there¶s another reason.wcdebate. by merely threatening a filibuster on a certain bill or resolution. Volume 9 Page 113 Enter Lani Guinier. For example. Some involve changing the internal decision-making structure of state and local legislatures. It could provide them a valuable commodity (a small voting block) where they could trade votes in exchange for other favorable legislation. there¶s the well-established propaganda system. That includes people living in a democracy. every vote counts. SOME OF GUINIER¶S SOLUTIONS We started out discussing voting rights law not just because it¶s an important subject that often gets short shrift. usually Ted Kennedy? GUINIER AND THE TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY Now. Since every vote counts. you don¶t want to totally ignore the minority (whether racial. of course ± but even requiring a super-majority on all legislation might help minority constituencies. for one thing. Total majority rule. and you¶ll be in big trouble. whose theory of representative democracy appealed to "the principle of reciprocity. When you¶re in power. too: voters and politicians have to think about the long term. This is especially true in close races or districts where there is an even split in political opinion. And nice as that sounds.
and neither race nor class should not be a determining factor in discussions. if you need a 40-hour a week job and/or don¶t get enough to eat. with its specific mission in mind. and carry out the criteria that are adopted? Do their decisions support the institution as a public place? Are graduates contributing back to the institution and the society it serves? This continual review process would involve. Hence. There is a reason. a left-wing critic of Guinier. college administrators. give feedback on. try to actively undermine their interests. etc. rather than just in name. That¶s why she¶s so concerned with voting rights reform: if minorities can be represented in fact. we need to admit that those merit-based criteria exclude certain people ± you¶re not going to get as good grades as other kids. Guinier's political views in no way support her designation as a "quota queen.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. seeing what is working and what is not. programmatic change) thinker. And it would ask several important questions to guide such efforts: Are admissions processes consistent with the institution's purposes? Do they award opportunity broadly? Do they admit people who demonstrate competence and potential under a range of relevant measures? Are the relevant stakeholders involved in helping formulate. However. to revamp their admissions policies based on various factors: Practicing confirmative action. Guinier asks. but many liberals consider Guinier a fairly ³conservative´ (in the sense of being careful and wary to offer wild. and would include an assessment of what contributions society as a whole can expect from the student or worker after the preference policy assists them. and so poor whites are also considered in programs like jobs and university admissions. has thoughts I feel are worth considering: Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and is relatively easy to understand. crush their economic infrastructure. You might be surprised. This is a flaw Guinier finds in traditional affirmative action. and abrogate their constitutionally guaranteed treaty rights).´ This includes modifying preference policies to consider class ± so minorities that are truly disadvantaged get the most preferences. More often. Her rationale for these reforms is simple. The best strategy lies in other means. presumably.com . (He tried to take away their fishing rights. health care projects. their interests will be better served by legislators. Guinier writes: So a policy of ³confirmative action´ would include economics as a decision calculus. because he controls appropriations money for their environmental restoration projects. usually. What does confirmative action entail? It entails a merit-based approach that is continually evolving. each institution would. Volume 9 Page 114 don¶t want to blast Gorton with both barrels when he¶s in office. regularly review and seek feedback on its admissions program.she believes a quota of minorities taken as representatives of the minority races as a whole will not truly give minorities a fair chance. This doesn¶t always happen that way. The conservative critics are relatively easy to understand: we should all be evaluated on an individual basis. GUINIER AND AFFIRMATIVE ACTION As noted above.wcdebate. people like Gorton just ignore their traditional enemies altogether ± or worse yet. after all. If admissions policies and employment opportunities are truly to be merit-based. This is your basic Ward Connerly school of thought. Guinier recognizes this. Stephen Steinberg." Guinier's books and law review articles support only one conclusion -. though. that Indian tribes hate him so much. for example. SOME CRITICS Critics of Guinier fall into basically two categories: the conservative and the liberal. That means includes continually updating affirmative into new policies that Guinier calls ³Confirmative Action.
wcdebate.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Volume 9 Page 115 CONCLUSION Whether you agree or disagree with Lani Guinier¶s ideas -.and whether you disagree with her from the left or the right ± you have to admit her ideas are provocative. economically viable future should check out her work.com . People that are interested in building a more racially just.
Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press." KENTUCKY LAW JOURNAL 86.. by Robert Richie and Steven Hill.edu/BR19. No. 1998. "Reframing the Affirmative Action Debate.mit. http://bostonreview. 5. Vol.com . Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute. March 1991. January 8. 1-16. "Lessons and Challenges of Becoming Gentlemen. Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitutional Law at Georgetown University Law Center.edu/BR25. Steinberg. New York: Simon & Schuster. BOSTON REVIEW June/September 1994. Guinier. Guinier.6/steinberg.mit." In REBELS IN LAW: VOICES IN HISTORY OF BLACK WOMEN LAWYERS. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.html. accessed May 1. Tushnet. Lani. "President Clinton's Doubt." NEW YORK UNIVERSITY REVIEW OF LAW AND SOCIAL CHANGE 24. Lani Guinier's Certainty. 1998. "Don't Scapegoat the Gerrymander. Jr." THE NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE. Lani.html. Lani. THE TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY: FUNDAMENTAL FAIRNESS IN REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY. 1998. http://bostonreview.wcdebate. Guinier. 2002. p. 1077-1154. Foreword to REFLECTING ALL OF US: THE CASE FOR PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION. December 200/January 2001. "The Triumph of Tokenism: The Voting Rights Act and the Theory of Black Electoral Success.3/tushnet. Lani. 2002. 1995. Guinier. 36-37. Stephen. New York: Free Press.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Guinier.html. 1999. Guinier. Mark. 1994. Volume 9 Page 116 BIBLIOGRAPHY Connerly. 1998. accessed May 1. p. http://bostonreview. 2002. Smith. Lani. December 200/January 2001.6/connerly. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW. Guinier. p. Boston: Beacon. p.edu/BR25. Lani.mit. BOSTON REVIEW. edited by J. 505525. accessed May 1. Lani." MICHIGAN LAW REVIEW. LIFT EVERY VOICE: TURNING A CIVIL RIGHTS SETBACK INTO A NEW VISION OF SOCIAL JUSTICE. Lani. Guinier. Ward. C. 89.
the white minority in South Africa. I wrote instead about the political exclusion of the black minority in local. Another media tactic against Guinier was to dub her a "quota queen. color-coded ballots. p. EXTRA!. Nor did I write. she stated that "the enforcement of this representational right does not require legislative set-asides. rather than to the political firestorm that raged around them -. Clinton's nominee as assistant attorney general for civil rights. July/August 1993. July/August 1993. p. In the media smear campaign against Lani Guinier. electoral quotas or 'one black. both wrote separate columns on the same day in the Washington Post (7/15/93). so the majority at any moment will be just a transitory coalition of minorities. Volume 9 Page 117 GUINIER¶S VIEWS AREN¶T BAD: THE MEDIA LIES TO US ABOUT THEM 1.wcdebate. after the nomination had already been killed -. 3. The problem is that Guinier is an opponent of quotas to ensure representation of minorities. CONSERVATIVES ARE HYPOCRITICAL WHEN THEY CHALLENGE GUINIER¶S VIEWS Lani Guinier. about the need sometimes to disaggregate the majority to ensure fair and effective representation for minority interests." But once the stereotype was affixed to her. praising ideas remarkably similar to mine. he admitted in an interview with Extra!. county and municipal governing bodies in America. two votes' remedies. tyrannical majorities can best be prevented by the multiplication of minority interests." 2. EXTRA!. p. there was seemingly no way she could dispel it: "Unbelievably." reporter David Margolick wrote -"everyone" including himself. Professor of Law at Harvard University. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting." columnist Ray Kerrison wrote in the New York Post (6/4/93). GUINIER IS THE OPPOSITE OF A ³QUOTA QUEEN´ Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas . George Will and Lally Weymouth." a phrase first used in a Wall Street Journal op-ed (4/30/93) by Clint Bolick. THE MEDIA ADMITS THEY ARE BIASED AGAINST GUINIER Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas . Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. her views were not only distorted. The racially loaded term combines the "welfare queen" stereotype with the dreaded "quota." In my law review articles I had expressed exactly the same reservations about unfettered majority rule. who after centuries of racial oppression are still excluded. July/August 1993." George Will wrote: "The Framers also understood that stable." a buzzword that almost killed the 1991 Civil Rights Act. 3. injecting further distortions into the process.which appeared on the day her nomination was withdrawn (6/3/93) -.a process known as "race-conscious districting. 3. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. How could Guinier's positions be distorted so thoroughly? Part of the problem was simple laziness: Rather than doing research into Guinier's record. a Reagan-era Justice Department official. No one who had done their homework seriously questioned the fundamentally democratic nature of "my ideas." In reality. One of the most prominent themes of the attack on Guinier was her supposed support for electoral districts shaped to ensure a black majority -. The difference is that the minority that I used to illustrate my academic point was not. she has criticized race-conscious districting (Boston Review. but we brand as "divisive" and "radical" the idea of providing similar remedies to include black Americans. In sharp contrast to her media caricature as a racial isolationist.there still was not a single quote from any of her writings. some of us feel comfortable providing special protections for wealthy landlords or white South Africans.com . the woman known as the 'quota queen' claimed she did not believe in quotas. EXTRA!." An entire op-ed in the New York Times -. EXTRA!.on June 4. as it was for Lally Weymouth. 4. but in many cases presented as the exact opposite of her actual beliefs. 3. When the New York Times finally devoted an article to her views. 9-10/92) because it "isolates blacks from potential white allies" and "suppresses the potential development of issue-based campaigning and cross-racial coalitions. Guinier is the most prominent voice in the civil rights community challenging such districting. "Almost everyone is relying on reconstructions by journalists and partisans. as George Will did. about the minority of wealthy landlords in New York City. Apparently. In an article in the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review (Spring/89)." Indeed. two conservative columnists.was based on the premise that Guinier was in favor of "segregating black voters in black-majority districts. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. THE MEDIA DISTORTS GUINIER¶S VIEWS TO THE EXTREME Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas . many journalists preferred to simply repeat the charges of ideologically motivated opponents. Lally Weymouth wrote: "There can't be democracy in South Africa without a measure of formal protection for minorities. 3.Yet these same two journalists and many others condemned me as anti-democratic.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. p. July/August 1993.
wcdebate. 6/14/93). in a multiracial democracy. Guinier stated that "authentic representatives need not be black as long as the source of the authority. p.minerscanary. Many commentators painted Guinier as a racial polarizer who implies that "only blacks can represent blacks. she was critiquing it. because it takes lessons from both the testocracy as well as affirmative action to confirm a set of experimental and pragmatic actions that begin to link (ad)mission practices for all students to the broad mission and public character of higher education in a multiracial democracy.shtml. That focus. Professor. np. p. but to ³lift as we climb. 2002. EXTRA!. we should seek to reconfirm the democratic role of higher education in a multiracial society by re-connecting admissions processes to the public mission of both public and private schools. But in a Michigan Law Review article (3/91). even as it demands clarifying and explicitly stating our institutional objectives. Dynamic merit involves a commitment to distribution of opportunity not only at birth but also through one¶s life. 3. Professor. who carry a commitment to contributing back to those who are less fortunate. THE CHARGES OF REVERSE RACISM AGAINST GUINIER ARE LUDICROUS Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas .org/mainart/confirmative_action.minerscanary. she was not endorsing the concept of authentic representation. http://www. If we are to move beyond the present polarization in a manner consistent with the commitments to fairness and equality that both positions endorse. Merit. each of us is then obligated not only to succeed as individuals. while keeping firmly in mind the democratic purposes of higher education and the specific mission of most institutions of higher education. Harvard Law School. accessed May 1. In other words. between claims of individual desert based on past opportunities and individual contributions based on future societal needs. AND SHOULD INCLUDE POOR WHITES Lani Guinier. And she was repeatedly charged with believing that only "authentic" blacks counted. can be chronicled with the proper instruments. 2002. like one¶s family tree or family assets.´ Merit becomes a forward-looking function of what a democratic society needs and values rather than a fixed." as George Will put it (Newsweek. June 14. It is changing and manifests itself differently depending on how you look at it. we confirm the benefits of affirmative action² but not simply to people of color²by re-casting merit as a practical term that is intimately connected with each institution¶s specific mission. np. allows us to reconsider the relationship between individual merit and operational fairness. in turn. 3. ADDRESS DELIVERED BEFORE THE NATIONAL URBAN LEAGUE¶S STATE OF AMERICA 2000 CONFERENCE. we must more carefully explore how to measure and what to call merit. In doing so. A first step is to view ³merit´ as a functional rather than generic concept. 2000. It is contextual and resistant to standardized measurement.shtml. accessed May 1.org/mainart/confirmative_action. In this fuller accounting of the democratic values of publicly supported institutions. in other words. http://www.com . Our commitment to democratic values benefits from studies like the one at the University of Michigan. Volume 9 Page 118 LANI GUINIER¶S IDEAS ARE GOOD FOR MULTIRACIAL DEMOCRACY 1.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. describing it as a "limited empowerment tool. I tentatively call this a process of confirmative action." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. which showcase the experience of people of color and many women. It requires modesty in our beliefs about what we can measure in human beings. ADDRESS DELIVERED BEFORE THE NATIONAL URBAN LEAGUE¶S STATE OF AMERICA 2000 CONFERENCE. becomes future-oriented and dynamic. 2000. quantifiable and backwards-looking entity that. legitimacy and power base is the black community. July/August 1993. and what constitutes fairness for all. AFFIRMATIVE ACTION AIDS DEMOCRACY. ³CONFIRMATIVE ACTION´ IS A COMMITMENT TO DEMOCRACY Lani Guinier. 2. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. p. June 14. Harvard Law School." But more important.
The next step in fulfilling America¶s promise is to create a colorblind state. and that those failures must result from a more deeply-rooted racism than Guinier is willing to acknowledge. For its entire history.html. The English Department is also enjoying a renaissance. The substantive failures of policy can be eliminated by following the indirect strategy of using the right procedures. accessed May 1. BOSTON REVIEW June/September 1994. Sturm and Guinier ignore this fundamental reality.edu/BR25." Sturm and Guinier implicitly concede that preference proponents cannot carry the day while traditional measures of merit prevail. Its efforts to create a student body with the right mix of skin colors have polarized it into two schools. While the City College administration shared their concerns about racial equality and merit.6/connerly.html.6/connerly. http://bostonreview. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Unfortunately. 2002.html. in which what one group wins necessarily comes at the expense of another group.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Volume 9 Page 119 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WON¶T HELP SOLVE RACISM OR PROMOTE DEMOCRACY 1.wcdebate. etc. Students admitted based on their prior academic performance continue to succeed. accessed May 1.edu/BR25. 4. attracting topflight students from around the world. 2. December 200/January 2001. and refreshing. 2002. is develop procedures which will allow all of us to work together to find the policies which will do that. it was surprising. Thus. 3. City College¶s School of Engineering remains one of the best schools in the country. public policy could generate gains for everyone. Hispanic. American governments at all levels have sorted us into categories based on our skin color: slave. accessed May 1. Instead.3/tushnet. What is most striking about Guinier's work. Unfortunately. All we need to do. Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute. It is a long and sordid history.edu/BR25. http://bostonreview. given these tensions. December 200/January 2001.com . according to Guinier's optimistic vision. BOSTON REVIEW. is how optimistic and fundamentally conservative she is. Which invites the pessimist to reply that the failures of policy show that the principle of reciprocity really doesn't work on matters of importance to African Americans. EMPIRICALLY. Caucasian. they mount a frontal assault on the "prevailing selection procedures" of American society: academic standards measured by paper-and-pencil tests. City College of New York embarked on precisely the same social experiment advocated by Sturm and Guinier today: open admissions. 2002. In 1970. Thus. 2002.edu/BR19. BOSTON REVIEW. http://bostonreview.that society is not so racially polarized. one for which we should all be ashamed. Their prescription of emphasizing race anew merely resurrects the worst of our history. the history of City College¶s experiment highlights the inherent problems in sacrificing merit on the altar of race. people -.mit. http://bostonreview.perhaps most particularly whites -. Indian. SORTING PEOPLE INTO CATEGORIES AS GUINIER DOES IS RACIST Ward Connerly. accessed May 1.have mistakenly seen politics as a zero-sum game.html.mit. GUINIER¶S IDEAS LEAD TO RACIAL POLARIZATION Ward Connerly.6/connerly. Both departments¶ alumni often proceed to top graduate programs in the country. we ought to believe -. Nor do we lack for evidence about how their proposal would work. City College¶s experiment has failed. free black.apparently in the face of the failures of public policy -. Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute. December 200/January 2001. their argument is not at all new. octoroon. GUINIER IGNORES THAT RACISM IS TOO DEEPLY ROOTED FOR HER PROPOSALS Mark Tushnet. Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitutional Law at Georgetown University Law Center. she proposes. Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute.mit. BOSTON REVIEW. For her.mit. to see Susan Sturm and Lani Guinier propose "shift[ing] the terrain of the debate. GUINIER¶S IDEAS WERE TRIED AND FAILED 30 YEARS AGO Ward Connerly.
html. Therefore±alas. have the resources to pay for expensive prep courses.com . December 200/January 2001. Against this background.edu/BR25. Sturm and Guinier declare that "it is time to shift the terrain of debate. 2002. 3. accessed May 1. Is so-and-so a "team player"? Does she do her job well? Does he have good communication skills? Does she make the tough decisions? Does he demonstrate leadership? Such judgments are easily tainted by personal prejudices.edu/BR25. Is this not the lesson of Bill Clinton¶s ill-fated proposal to "end welfare as we know it"? 3. Indeed.html. Volume 9 Page 120 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WILL NOT BE EFFECTIVE 1. especially when the people doing the evaluations are white and male and the people being evaluated belong to stigmatized groups.6/steinberg.6/steinberg." as Sturm and Guinier write in their opening sentence. rather than scores on "paper-andpencil" tests.wcdebate. accessed May 1. To be sure.mit. the "testocracy" that is used to assess merit is neither fair nor functional. THE SOLUTION IS TO MEND AFFIRMATIVE ACTION. two troubling questions arise. but they end up acquiescing to the reversal of hard-won gains and falling back on reforms that are unlikely to be enacted in the foreseeable future. even if enacted. 2002. However. Sturm and Guinier also make a compelling case that it would be fairer and more productive to judge applicants on the basis of performance criteria. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW. is that they implicitly advocate these reforms as a surrogate for affirmative action policy. December 200/January 2001.mit.6/steinberg." The entire thrust of their argument is to explore alternatives to affirmative action that will broaden access of minorities and women to jobs and universities. Though they do not say so explicitly. there are compelling arguments for abandoning standardized tests that favor privileged groups who. Nor will Sturm and Guinier get the concessions they are bargaining for. Instead Sturm and Guinier make a case for overhauling the selection process that evaluates candidates for jobs and college admissions. They may tell themselves that they are driven by realpolitik. December 200/January 2001. they seem resigned to the fact that the Supreme Court. are Sturm and Guinier capitulating to the anti-affirmative action backlash and prematurely throwing in the towel for the sake of an illusory consensus? Second.html. Sturm and Guinier could have concluded that the case against affirmative action is specious and therefore affirmative action should be upheld.mit. http://bostonreview. First. At first blush." 2. affirmative action has been under sustained assault. GUINIER¶S IDEAS ARE IMPRACTICAL Stephen Steinberg. On closer examination. aside from the advantages that derive from better schooling. is now poised to deliver the coup de grace. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW. studies have consistently found that performance appraisal ratings of women and people of color are prone to bias.edu/BR25. 2002.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. though. this strategy may appear to be a sensible concession to political reality. accessed May 1. Affirmative action is assailed by critics as violating cherished principles of "merit. The problem is that "for more than two decades. NOT GIVE UP AS GUINIER DOES Stephen Steinberg. What evidence is there that overhauling the selection criteria would open up avenues for women and minorities? In most large-scale organizations±corporations and universities alike±employees are routinely evaluated by superiors on an array of performance criteria. "if it ain¶t broke. here the syllogism runs into trouble. provide the access to jobs and opportunities that are today secured by affirmative action? The logic of Sturm and Guinier¶s brief can be stated as follows: 1. Their ideological enemies will revel in this retreat to a second line of defense by two law professors who are identified with the cause of affirmative action. don¶t fix it. http://bostonreview. would their proposed reforms of the selection process. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE GUINIER¶S PROPOSALS WOULD WORK Stephen Steinberg. http://bostonreview." 2. which has already eviscerated affirmative action through a series of decisions. The problem. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW. As the saying goes. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.
Not only is Dr. STATES AND SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS. Her work includes discussions about the nature of the state. Each section should provide another useful way of approaching domestic and foreign topics in the realm of social policy or social change. Skocpol utilizes her experience in sociology and political science to analyze the nature of public policy and social revolutions. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. social policies and revolution through historical and comparative methods. In addition to all of this responsibility she still finds time to be what she calls her readers to be. Through comparative historical analysis she helps to create an understanding of international contexts and changes in domestic policies that spawn revolutionary change in a particular society. especially in analyzing revolutions. full scale social revolution has been quite rare. Thomas Professor of Government and Sociology at Harvard.O. In this essay I will briefly describe some of Theda Skocpol¶s most prominant works and the theories she has developed in them. by nature. It also allow debaters to utilize historical examples without making it sound simply like a list that can be easily countered by a list on the other side. As well as political revolutions that transform the state but not society and do not necessarily involve class struggles. but she is a wife and mother. Her earlier works focused more on revolution while her more recent literature tends to deal extensively with the United States¶ domestic social policies.´ This type of change is not the only force of change in the modern world. she then returned to Harvard¶s Sociology Department. She argues that social revolutions involve two coincidences. than other types of societal change. ³class-based revolts from below. From 1975 to 1981 she taught as a member of the non-tenured faculty at Harvard (Homepage). Skocpol¶s way of tying social and political forces together and analyzing those issue which effect both provides debaters with a model for effective argumentation through a discussion of past events.´ (4). First. She now has tenure in both Sociology and the Department of Government at Harvard. they involve the coincidence of political and social transformations. Other forms of change never achieve this unique combination. in fact. Skocpol¶s work refutes such mechanisms as the best method. Skocpol a researcher. Skocpol and Sociologists for Women in Society (SWS) filed charges against Harvard with the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (E. The examples she points to are rebellions that.) on her behalf (Impersonal at Best). She received her Bachelor¶s degree from Michigan State in 1969 and then went on to study for her PhD at Harvard.com . This perspective is useful for Lincoln Douglas debaters because it allows for method of examining values within a particular social and political climate and the effect they will have on particular resolutions. She is a native of the state of Michigan. Debaters are often drawn to a social science perspective on social change in order to explain the effects of their views on society. She is involved in the community around her not only through her books but by contributing to local newspapers. Theda Skocpol defines social revolutions as. shows Skocpol.C. Volume 9 Page 121 THEDA SKOCPOL Theda Skocpol is the Victor S. Social revolutions are fundamentally different. basic transformations of a society¶s state and class structures. involve class-based revolt but not structural change. EXPLAINING SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS In her early work. that this particular form of change deserves special attention because they are a distinctive pattern of sociopolitical change that has a large and lasting effect on both the country where the revolution occurs as well as other nations around the world. an active citizen. I will end with a general discussion of the importance of Skocpol¶s work for Lincoln-Douglas debaters. In 1981 the all-male department of Sociology at Harvard refused tenure to Dr. However. Next. From 1981 to 1985 she taught Political Science and Sociology at the University of Chicago.wcdebate. Skocpol argues. She points out that they are accompanied and partially carried out by. Dr.E. professor and well-known author. a social revolution involves the coincidence of societal structural change with class upheaval. The nature of the social revolution is unique because of its mutually reinforcing nature and the intensity through which they work.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. ³rapid. She then uses her knowledge of history to create a more generalizable framework and allow readers to move beyond particular cases. Her work focuses on a structural perspective and pays special attention to the specific contexts in which certain types of revolutions take place.
if it wins.´ Though many politicians would like to believe that the U. New Zealand and Brazil between 1880 and World War I. Volume 9 Page 122 Skocpol¶s work draws heavily on Marxist tradition from which she recognizes that class conflicts figure prominently in social revolutions. undertakes to establish its own authority and program. Other issues dealt with by the Social Security Act were things such as unemployment insurance. could create a situation that would lead to an undesirable revolution. The structural perspective taken by Skocpol is one that examines. through this analysis the debater should be able to show how their stance can create positive changes in society. Britain and Germany where governments enacted laws concerning hour and wage regulations as well as arbitration of labor disputes for workers. Skocpol examines these issues in order to analyze the way the United States chooses to give out social benefits. For this understanding political-conflict theories are necessary in Skocpol¶s analysis. in following Skocpol¶s model successfully a debater would outline a particular stance on the resolution. changes in social systems or societies give rise to grievances. During wartime nations like Britain became successful in maintaining and increasing such policies by juxtaposing their model of the ³welfare state´ against the Nazi model.S. The same method may prove successful in answering a plan that could have detrimental effects. (STATES AND SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS 14-15) Obviously. the United States¶ model. which left states in charge of taxes and allowed them to determine coverage and benefits. which they labeled ³the warfare state. The idea of political-conflict is based in the assumption that.that consciously undertakes to overthrow the existing government and perhaps the entire social order.´ The concept of the welfare state began in countries like Australia. The term ³welfare´ has always been a negative term in United States political discussions. political science and history being the most prominent have discussed the concept of welfare. not all social revolution is a positive thing. those individuals capable of creating change. After understanding that a particular class may come to a place where they realize the can struggle for change it is also important to understand how such groups may carry out their objectives. These countries also began noncontributory pensions for the elderly. or new class or group interests and potentials for collective mobilization.wcdebate. ³«collective action is based upon group organization and access to resources«´ (STATES AND SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS 14). Hopefully. and insurance for workers. This concept makes receipt of such benefits demeaning and citizens attempt to avoid them. Then there develops a purposive. for better or worse. Early social spending in these countries continued to spread to other nations as well including Denmark. which started long after these other nations¶ programs. exists in the framework of the ³welfare state. social disorientation. The Social Security Act of 1935 included contributory retirement programs as its only national program. Americans tend to perceive these programs as handouts to people who are lazy and haven¶t earned them. The federal government has never created a national health insurance policy and though it offers some subsides for public assistance programs it is left up to the states to administer such policies.´ that view is inaccurate. Skocpol takes the work from both of these areas in to consideration in understanding the development of social policies in the U. their social position. Thus. mass-based movementcoalescing with the aid of ideology and organization. She takes the Marxist analysis further by examining other factors that have an influence on social change. MATERNALIST SOCIAL POLICY FRAMEWORK In American political debates it is common to hear politicians refer to this nation as a ³welfare state. In the past individuals in a variety of areas. the conditions that cause change. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and the resources available to the group.com . never followed a noncontributory model and in only one instance was anything allotted directly from the federal government to the citizens. Finally. the revolutionary movement fights it out with the authorities or dominant class and.S. if affirmed. While all of the previously mentioned nations provided social benefits directly from the nation¶s budget. Her claim is that: First. A debater can use this strategy to make the argument that the status quo is good or at least that the case brought about by their opponent. and examining how their development was effected by who could vote and have an effect on the legislation.
Most importantly however. ³U. a widely accepted understanding in the U.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. political institutions and variously structured social movements and political coalitions´ (PROTECTING SOLDIERS AND MOTHERS 36). A shallow analysis of this problem may yield support for an understanding that American media is inaccurate. However. Volume 9 Page 123 The welfare state concept has always been approached from a masculine standpoint. which included the charities and the home. moves away from an understanding of United States history as one where powerful men made all the decisions and women could only make marginal gains under a patriarchal framework. She argues that up until this point the role of literature on women and welfare has been to sensitize readers to the subject and it therefore treats the subject through the use of narrative and interpretive essay. Her theory applies to Working men and women of modest economic means.com .S.´ When talking about the middle she refers both to those individuals who fall into the middle of the socioeconomic spectrum as well as the middle of the generations. while paying the taxes that sustain retirees now and into the future. The work done by Skocpol in her book. PROTECTING SOLDIERS AND MOTHERS. the subject is not presented as one sided but rather analyzed through an understanding of the interplay between a variety of forces which she claims include women¶s organizations as well as. This mentality causes theorists to miss important issues when attempting to understand the history and development of social policy in the United States. this perspective allows debaters to move beyond shallow criticisms of a patriarchal structure to a full understanding of what that term truly means and how it may be an inaccurate criticism of United States policies. in this case the media was absolutely right. First.people who are not children and are not yet retirees. This could be followed by reports of the Clinton administration¶s success at keeping the economy up and unemployment rates low. Skocpol alters that reality by examining gendered social policies as well as maternalist policies in her work. The fundamental understanding and belief has been that the public sphere. Most nights the average American could turn on the news and see President Bill Clinton or Vice President Al Gore promoting their latest policy to put health care in the hands of the people and provide opportunities to the working class. THE MISSING MIDDLE. was published in 2000 and all of the issues that she addresses are still important in current political debates. The framework she sets up in this work provides yet another useful mechanisim for analyzing problems with the social and political structure in the United States while finding workable solutions to those issues. Welfare literature often ignores the gendered dimension when examining American politics. was for males and females were responsible for the private realm. (THE MISSING MIDDLE 8) Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. She explains the powerful place middle-class women found themselves in once they began to organize around particular issues affecting their place in society. In order to explain this paradox Skocpol developed her theory of the ³missing middle.wcdebate. Skocpol takes on the challenge of creating a straightforward treatment of gender and social policies while learning from the more tentative arguments that have previously been made on the subject. They are adults who do most of the providing and caring for the children. politics and business. by examining pensions and programs for males and the elderly as well as subsidies for women and children. This book defends an understanding of the power of various women¶s organizations that make up the women¶s movement in America. In such a political climate it struck many people as strange that Theda Skocpol would choose that time to speak out about inequality in America. Her book. Second it provides a well rounded concept of social policy in the United States. Despite media reports that America was in a prosperous time the majority of the country was feeling overworked and underpaid.S. the stock market was up and social spending was high as well. having trouble obtaining health care and proper treatment at their jobs and not seeing the great wealth they heard about every night from the news media. Skocpol develops a maternalist theory of the United Stats social policies. However. unemployment was down. This has a number of implications for debate. this different perspective is one that allows debaters to emphasize the role of women in the history and development of United Stats social policy without painting the male population in a negative light. THE MISSING MIDDLE The late 1990s were a fairly positive time in American history.
mainly. Additionally. ³are truly at the epicenter of the changing realities of U. are generally ignored in political debates. The low unemployment rate sounds good but ignores the fact that more Americans are working harder for less money than they have before and a majority of those same people could care less about a rising stack market because they don¶t own stock or have the time to learn how to invest their money because they are too busy getting out there and trying to earn it. because the theory of the missing middle addresses. working class parents it provides a realistic mechanism for assessing the resolution which your judges may often relate to. Volume 9 Page 124 The people she is referring to are the one who fall somewhere in between the ³poor´ that are often the focus of welfare debates and the wealthy professionals who are usually defended in political debates by the conservative politicians. She points out that political debates devolve into conflicts between what are seen as the ³rich´ and ³poor´ in American society on issues such as welfare. More recently social policy debates have become an issue of the elderly verses the young. While college student and professors who judge Lincoln Douglas debate may be more amenable to radical discussions on either the right or the left of the resolution these individuals are not always the largest portion of a high school debater¶s judging pool. The reason many Americans found themselves feeling overworked at the end of the 1990s while the media reported on the positive status of America was because they were. This may leave some debaters thinking. By examining a resolution through the missing middle perspective you seem to be avoiding the extreme positions and providing a discussion that is more palatable yet it will always clash with the dominant positions in these debates. Politicians tend to juxtapose the needs of an aging population with the programs designed to help underprivileged children.wcdebate. many of them parents. First. Though the Clinton administration can tout low unemployment rates and a high stock market it is irrelevant to a large portion of the population. society and economic life´ (THE MISSING MIDDLE 8). taking this approach insures that politicians leave out the largest portion of American society. Those individuals who fall in the middle of the generational and socio-economic spectrum. and still are.com . While all of these groups are relevant to discussions on social policy.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Skocpol argues that because politicians continue to ignore the middle section of people in America¶s diverse spectrum of individuals they continuously miss the needs of this population. This work is especially important for Lincoln-Douglas debaters to have as a tool when determining a perspective with which to shape the debate for a couple of reasons. the working population. why would I want to take a middle of the road stance if there will still be a lot of literature that clashes with it? The answer to this is simple. The group Skocpol seeks to address are generally working Americans who spend long hours at a job because they need to feed families and want to create a decent life either as a single parent or in a dual income home. this theory differs from most current social and political theories in that it stand right in the middle of the dominant perspectives and still provides tons of clash with all of the things around it.S. who Skocpol argues. Often working parents make up a large portion of the audience at tournaments and Skocpol¶s theory of the missing middle may be the perfect perspective with which to approach a resolution and make arguments that your audience can relate to. Skocpol argues. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. because Skocpol¶s theory tends to address the unspoken majority in American society she may provide a safer perspective when you are having trouble with audience analysis.
This particular theorist¶s work is a great tool for debaters because she takes the time to analyze situations from a viewpoint that allows the reader to examine historical examples. Her work provides a mechanism for examining proposals made in the form of policy action as well as those that are created more as social changes. She takes great care in pointing out the roots of social policy as well as explaining work done in a variety of fields and showing what other scholars have contributed to the research. Here I would like to give a more broad discussion of the application of Skocpol¶s work to this activity.wcdebate.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. which LD tends to draw upon. The final reason that debaters may find Skocpol¶s work accessible is that she does not merely offer an explanation of why things are the way that they are nor does she stop after a thorough criticism of a particular structure. her criticisms and explanations end with plans for practical actions that could bring about desired change. to explain events.com . Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. tied together with values and political context as well as factors such as class. Skocpol¶s work is useful for any Lincoln Douglas debater who finds themselves in a debate about domestic or foreign social policies. reading Skocpol¶s work will assist debaters in understanding perspectives that may be used to answer their case and providing them the tools necessary for refuting such arguments. Volume 9 Page 125 LINCOLN-DOUGLAS DEBATE APPLICATIONS Some of the implications of this author¶s work for Lincoln-Douglas debates have already been outlined in previous sections. they will find useful examples and explanations that support the arguments they choose to make. Additionally. She also does a beautiful job of answering those theories that she chooses to disagree with. No matter what subject a debater may access this author¶s work to find she will end her discussion with a workable solution to the problems laid out in the discussion. In Skocpol¶s book a debater will not only find a framework through which to construct a case. Following her structure will allow debaters not only to have a political theory on which to base their arguments but it will provide a logical structure that culminates in a workable mechanism for change that should make sense to the critic. Instead.
Norton & Company.171. Case. Theda. Fall. New Haven: Yale University Press. Greenberg. Terrance C. Steven. 1979. Boston: South End Press.com . Theda. ³The State of Gender Studies in Political Science. ³Federal Maternal Policy and gender Politics: Comparative Insights. PROTECTING SOLDIERS AND MOTHERS: THE POLITICAL ORIGINS OF SOCIAL POLICY IN THE UNITED STATES. THE POLITICS OF HUMAN SERVICES. THE MISSING MIDDLE.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Felicia A. Kornbluth. 1997.´ FEMINIST STUDIES.´ LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY. Skocpol. and Nicole Mellow. New York: Cambridge University Press.S. Volume 9 Page 126 BIBLIOGRAPHY Barker. p. 1982.wcdebate. Skocpol. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. 28. 1984. 1999. Gretchen.´ THE ANNALS OF THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF POLITICAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCE.´ JOURNAL OF WOMEN¶S HISTORY. 1992. Skocpol.183.. Theda and Stanley B. ³Impersonal at best: tales from the tenure track. July 31. THE NEW MAJORITY. 1996. New York: W. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U.´ OFF OUR BACKS. April 30. Theda. ³Review Section Symposium: Lawyers and Politics and Civic Professionalism: Legal Elites and Cause Lawyers. Skocpol.W. STATES & SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF FRANCE. Wineman. September 2000. Dubrow. 2000. p. Ritter. Halliday. May 31. Gail Lee. RUSSIA & CHINA. Kristin Kay. p. 1997.
. Protecting Soldiers and Mothers: The Political Origins of Social Policy in the United States. p. 2. historical sociologist Theda Skocpol delivered a series of blows that threatened to bring it tumbling down. Case.. has helped in describing the complex historical relationships between masculine power and government policy. April 30. the history of social policy is understood by situating it "within a broader.171. the literature under review profiles both the tight links between sexism and state policies. "only (extremely flexible) outer limits. Associate professor of American Politics at University of Texas at Austin and Nicole Mellow. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U. Neither neo-Marxists nor Skocpolians offered a model that entirely works for feminist students of welfare." whereas historic monarchies like Sweden and France have strong central states-has enormous weight in shaping public policy. it provides an analytic concept for understanding the nature of political relations and state institutions.S. ³The State of Gender Studies in Political Science. To this already weakened edifice of Marxian theory. Research on policy in a historical context tends to be preoccupied with broad theoretical questions that are of concern to feminist and other political theorists. electoral rules.183. [S]tate structures and party organizations have (to a very significant degree) independent histories. the shape of a government in itself-which she takes as mostly invariant over time. Skocpol asserts that the early development of American social policy was shaped by a social feminist movement that advocated for the establishment of a maternalist welfare state. p. In other words. a graduate student in the same department. the emphasis of both models on determination and autonomy.com . Although not always explicitly." she argued in 1980. Skocpol pushes social determinants out of her study so far as to load the dice in favor of autonomous state actors. political parties and officials. that is. This type of policy and law research offers one of the most promising venues for integrating gender in such a way as to both critique and reformulate standard theories and interpretations of AP. Together. to the emergence of particular government policies from particular governments. bureaucrats. 14 In Skocpol's vision. Volume 9 Page 127 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY OF THE STATE IS GOOD 1. The negotiations and conflicts among politicians. these institutionalized forces create policy opportunities and barriers.. July 31. "[C]apitalism in general has no politics.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and policy feedback loom large. from whether and how economic elites could determine political outcomes. However. bureaucrats. Rather. In The Wages of Motherhood (1995). Professor of Sociology.a polity-centered perspective -. organizationally grounded analysis of American political development"(526). governmental institutions. just as the neo-Marxists admitted the "relative autonomy" of politics while loading the dice in favor of "determination in the last instance" by economic power. Given the enormity of her undertaking.for accounting for the trajectory of social provisions. September 2000. and elite interest groups account for much of the remainder.´ JOURNAL OF WOMEN¶S HISTORY. and the random walk that such policies often take along their autonomous historical paths. However. SKOCPOL¶S EXPLAINS STATES POLICIES' RELATIONSHIP TO SEXISM WELL Felicia A. In Protecting Soldiers and Mothers (1992).´ FEMINIST STUDIES.´ THE ANNALS OF THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF POLITICAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCE. in combination with the postmodern suspicion of theories that make social life sum up into a neat coherent whole. SKOCPOL CAN ACCOUNTS FOR INSTITUTIONAL FACTORS BEARING ON POLITICS Kristin Kay Barker. Kornbluth. ³Federal Maternal Policy and gender Politics: Comparative Insights. 3. Simply stated. I will necessarily condense her account. There is a tradition of research in the area of social welfare exemplified by scholars such as Theda Skocpol and Gwendolyn Mink that has influenced not only scholarship on American political development but interdisciplinary feminist scholarship as well. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Skocpol introduces the term "structured polity" to describe the mix of political autonomy and social constraints that operate to produce social policy. Mink follows the development of this welfare state through the New Deal and argues that it was not only gendered but also racialized in ways that lowered the civic status of poor women and nonwhites. 1996. weakly bureaucratic "Tudor polity. INCLUDING GENDER IN POLITICAL STUDIES IMPROVES THE ANALYTIC FRAMEWORK Gretchen Ritter.wcdebate. Skocpol's larger theoretical agenda is to substantiate her framework -. the United States possesses a decentralized. In her newest work. 1997. resulting in over 500 pages of text. Gender is being used not just to add women to a fixed political picture." 13 Skocpol and her colleagues redirected the focus of study. in her polity-centered perspective (much as in her earlier state-centered model).
p. In content. Readers may also hear in maternalism. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U. and children figured prominently in the configuration of early welfare politics. that women as mothers deserved a return from their governments for the socially vital work they performed by raising children. federal social programs for mothers.171. 1996.wcdebate. were doubly paternalist: Elite males. Felicia A.´ FEMINIST STUDIES.183. 1996. p. THE HISTORY OF MATERNALISM SHOWS THE IMPORTANCE OF WOMEN¶S EXPERIENCES Kristin Kay Barker. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. in their processes of creation.com . July 31. with the latter's perceived best interests in mind.S. Professor of Sociology. Skocpol clarifies her operating definition of maternalism by analogy to the "paternalism" she argues characterized most other welfare states. April 30. Volume 9 Page 128 SKOCPOL'S UNDERSTANDING OF MATERNALISM SHOULD BE ADOPTED 1. Case. established regulations or social benefits for members of the working class-that is. they treated women as mothers who made claims on the state thereby. Historical accounts of the emergence of maternal policies are significant not only because they make for a richer representation of the crucial years of welfare-state development in Western capitalist democracies between 1880 and 1940. in Protecting Soldiers and Mothers. Many women reformers in U. SKOCPOL PROVIDES THE CLEAREST UNDERSTANDING OF MATERNALIST POLICIES Kornbluth. These texts continue to advance the larger claim of feminist scholarship that existing categories of analysis fail to capture adequately women's realities. the story was different when it came to what might be called maternalist legislation.S. "Pioneering European and Australasian welfare states.S. [W]hile very little paternalist legislation was passed in the early-twentiethcentury United States. they were designed by ambitious middle-class women for working-class women.´ JOURNAL OF WOMEN¶S HISTORY. echoes of what historians of the early national United States have termed "republican motherhood. time-bound contribution to political thought. p. and in their processes of creation." she writes.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. rather than just along the lines their organizations requested.. 1997. ³Federal Maternal Policy and gender Politics: Comparative Insights.171." However. programs designed "in the best interest" of workers. post suffrage women's movement. maternalism represents a unique political philosophy that is particular to the historical moment at which it emerged. which treated men as fathers and heads of families. history may have believed (in Ladd-Taylor's phrase) "that there is a uniquely feminine value system based on care and nurturance" or (in Gordon's) have "imagined themselves in a motherly role toward the poor. Case. and other reform ideologies by emphasizing its special. More important. 3. who know them as "social feminists. April 30. Felicia A. 2.´ FEMINIST STUDIES. bureaucrats and national political leaders. potential mothers." But we can distinguish maternalism from social feminism. MATERNALISM UNDERSTANDS THAT WOMEN HAVE A POLITICAL ROLE AS MOTHERS. (P. and/or that governments had a special responsibility to ensure the health and welfare of children. For over 20 years feminist scholars have outlined the ways in which maternalist rhetoric and strategies were employed in the formation of social policy campaigns and crusades. Although often overlooked in scholarship focused on state provisions to workers. Maternalists were those reformers at the turn of the twentieth century who believed that motherhood or potential motherhood was a legitimate basis for women's citizenship. which simultaneously justified a public role for women and affirmed women's primary responsibility for children." or as the fractious. 317) As paternalist social policies were paternalist in two ways-in their content. Kornbluth. they offer a fundamental restructuring of our current understanding of what is political. exhausted. Maternalist reformers may be familiar to some readers. which were largely closed to their putative workingclass beneficiaries-so were maternalist policies maternalist in two ways. republican motherhood. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U.
1993. teaches American women's gender. and that became maternalism's legacy to the American welfare state. It was the limited vision of women's rights and responsibilities. Ironically. law and its carriers had been reduced to a mere instrumentality" (p. it is also good enough to take seriously the autonomy of law. which continued to be reproduced not only by experts on children and the family. THE POLITICS OF HUMAN SERVICES. severe stratification of power. np. Sonya. Within political sociology. a substantial literature has arisen that critiques the failure of pluralist theories to recognize the centrality of the state as an institutional actor with interests of its own with some measure of autonomy from the economic and political interests that emerge from the market and civil society.in the interests of the corporate order." MATERNALISM IS FLAWED 1. Northwestern University. The case of child care and mothers' pensions reveals both the strengths and the limitations of an ideology rooted in arguments about women's natural capacity as mothers. Similarly. "The Limits of Maternalism. While maternalism empowered the early female philanthropists to establish day nurseries and the NDFN to improve them. 307. Instead. MATERNALISM CAN ONLY PROVIDE A LIMITED CONCEPT OF RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES FOR AMERICAN WOMEN. maternalism can also cast public child care as peculiarly unstable enterprise with a self-divided and self-defeating sense of purpose. the hidden function of the welfare state is to maintain political and social stability and to deter fundamental change. Author. Volume 9 Page 129 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY CANNOT CREATE CHANGE 1. but also by policy makers seeking to restrict governmental services for women. but also maternalism that contributed to the humiliating and punitive treatment of recipients. but he criticizes Skocpol and other state theorists for failing to comprehend law's autonomy: "In asserting the autonomy of the state. Shamir sympathizes with Theda Skocpol's thesis that state managers develop their own agendas. the predominance of giant corporations. Koven & Michel). New York: Routledge. Michel. after the turn of the century maternalist ideology began to weaken as parent education and other fields challenged the notion of maternal instinct and called for training and professionalization for those who dealt with children. and social welfare history at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. not the idea of child care as public service to all. Senior Research Fellow. reliance on industrial production which poisons the planet. in both class and state. This function proceeds despite the conscious of many individuals.centered approaches. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. What became extracted and reified was the single trope of the woman as mother in the home. Point for point. THIS CAUSES THEIR POLICY INFLUENCE TO OFTEN BE COUNTER PRODUCTIVE. SKOCPOL¶S THEORY OF THE STATE FAILS TO RECOGNIZE THE AUTONOMY OF LAW. from legislators to bureaucrats to social workers. 1999. It is a mistake to view the welfare state policies as representing a qualitatively different system from the conservative program. Fall.´ LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY.36. p.wcdebate." MOTHERS OF A NEW WORLD (ed. they represent a different version of how to sustain the corporate capitalist structure. American Bar Foundation. to "do good. liberal human services leave basic elements of the political economy in tact: structural unemployment. If the true agenda of the conservative program is to serve the interests of big business. Theory of the State.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2.com . p. 165). it was maternalism that fueled the campaign for mothers' pensions. THE WELFARE STATE IS AN INSTITUTION OF EXPLOITATION THAT CAN'T BE REFORMED Steven Wineman. Adjunct Professor of Sociology. she is also the co-editor and author of a variety of works on these subjects. Terrance C. Halliday. ³Review Section Symposium: Lawyers and Politics and Civic Professionalism: Legal Elites and Cause Lawyers. Hence Shamir maintains that if it is good enough to argue for the autonomy of the state and its managers. p. 1984.
She has no critique of maternalism". NORWAY. or rather a set of meanings culturally constructed around sexual difference. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.male and female welfare reformers worked within substantially the same gender system. often called the two-track welfare system. However. The stratification of the American welfare system into the social insurance and public assistance program. says Gordon. They did share some fundamental beliefs and assumptions about proper role of government and the proper construction of families. "Specifically. Gordon indicates that Skocpol's analysis is not matched by familiarity with scholarly debates on gender..com . Gender is. Spring. after all. Spring. determined by class as much as by gender.. Gender means "female" for Skocpol. Women's activism was as much as men's. Gordon is able to underscore that men and women were holding similar visions of the economic structure of the proper family in which the welfare state took its form. researcher at European University Institute. but Skocpol identifies these commonalties no more than their differences.PHILOL. in the way Gordon sees it. The absence of such a specification and definition is a result of her failure to ground her concept of gender in questions of male and female power. it is a difference. without directly expressing the distinctions between the two concepts. UNIVERSITY OF BERGEN.PHILOL. THE DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY. In the entire book there is no discussion of male power in general or in its specifics -or. "Gender and the Welfare State: Maternalism: a New Historical Concept?" A THESIS SUBMITTED FOR THE DEGREE OF CAND. PhD. THE DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY. Gordon thinks it is false to believe that a kind of unity among women was present at this time. but one that did not fit the needs and understandings of many less privileged citizens". while these gendered assumptions did not necessarily express antagonism between men and women. Gordon continues: "This failure exemplifies ways in which Skocpol's approach to the influence of gender is undeveloped in relation to the theoretical level of much scholarly gender analysis today". the problems in Skocpol's interpretations are already present in the outset of the book: she fails to produce any adequate definitions of what she means by "paternalist" and "maternalist".The maternalist strategy was after all a result of women's lack of political power. SKOCPOL'S ESSENTIALISM REINFORCES A DESTRUCTIVE GENDER BINARY. in order to maintain the family wage system. np. 2. 1996. a result of gender values shared by both men and women. . to put it inversely. PhD." Gordon continues: She [Skocpol] generalizes about these "maternalists" as if they were manifestations of some universal female principle. 1996. In other words. Skocpol uses maternalism as an opposition to paternalism. the same set of assumptions about proper family life and the proper sphere for men and women. to be sure. was.wcdebate. in a context of male domination. they were anything but universal: "they expressed a dominant outlook. To Gordon. By not employing gender as a male/female opposition. Clearly. with the exception of the structural differences mentioned above. says Gordon. and thus the concepts of paternalism/maternalism refer to an inequity of power in relation to both gender and generation. "Gender and the Welfare State: Maternalism: a New Historical Concept?" A THESIS SUBMITTED FOR THE DEGREE OF CAND. Volume 9 Page 130 MATERNALISM IS BAD FOR WOMEN 1. np. NORWAY. this supposed unity denies that women's agency also derives from other aspects of their social position. of the fact that the forms of political power with which Skocpol is so concerned are shaped by their maleness. and Gordon claims that "she produces an entirely celebratory account of the women's organizations she studies. SKOCPOL'S GENDER ANALYSIS IS SIMPLISTIC AND INCOMPLETE Eirinn Larsen. p.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. UNIVERSITY OF BERGEN. Eirinn Larsen. not merely a neutral or benign difference. p. researcher at European University Institute.
Unfortunately she realizes that it is this choice that often causes her work to be passed over for use in institutions of higher learning. At the university she found herself further away from individuals expecting girls to seek out married life but the sex discrimination was not gone. This interest in books was not. Though hooks will make reference in her works to scholars who have influenced her work.D. correctly it turned out. In the period from 1980 to 1998 she produced sixteen books as well as numerous articles and speeches. She follows his model because it is participatory and employs the notion of praxis. Growing up hooks was taught that men did not like to be with smart girls and if she ever wanted to marry.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. In her reading hooks found one author who she had a particular connection with. For her. Paulo Friere. She knew there was something else out there for her. that too much reading would change her life.com . she found a hostile reaction toward discussions of ³feminism. She later returned to California to obtain her Ph. hooks continued writing and went on to Yale after graduating. especially Friere. Despite this realization hooks continues her practice because she feels the accessibility of her work to those outside of the scholarly community is more important. which was supposed to be the primary goal in every girl¶s mind. She has been extremely successful in applying her personal experiences in feminism. including hooks. Her father feared. it was simply recreated in new ways. from the University of California in Santa Cruz. her writing style functions as a critical tool that breaks down accepted notions of proper and improper in academic scholarship. she does not generally conform to rules of source citation or footnoting. She points out that. hooks argues that her choice to avoid particular citation formatting of her work is not careless writing but rather a conscious choice to make her writing more accessible. perceived as a productive activity for a young girl to be engaged in.wcdebate. She earned her bachelor¶s degree from Stanford University where she expected to find a more enlightened view on the role of reading and education in a woman¶s life. there are many aspects of his work that have nurturing qualities for hooks and she feels justified in overlooking the sexist tendency. WRITING STYLE bell hooks is a scholar. sexism and classism. politics. Despite the fact the many feminist critics. Volume 9 Page 131 bell hooks bell hooks is the name chosen by Gloria Watkins as her pseudonym. In her classes. highly knowledgeable in a variety of areas including literature. which allows the author to combine reflex and action. She could often be found curled up on her bed on a mental escape in a good book. and the destructive effects of sexism. race and gender studies but she more often chooses to write from her experiences and to adopt a more narrative style regardless of the type of work she is composing. as it might be today. academia and her southern upbringing to a criticism of society that speaks to readers among a variety of audiences. hooks was born in 1952 in Hopkinsville. have indicted Friere as "partially blinded by sexism"(Women Writing Culture 106). She uses her own experience to help others understand the hierarchy that exists in American society. Kentucky. generally taught by white males. she would have to avoid excessive involvement in books. From the age of ten she was sure she wanted to become a writer. self-actualized woman who survived harsh racism. This is part of her attempt to decolonize her mind and the minds of other colonized people.´ Determined to overcome these notions. The desire to marry was not something bell hooks chose to focus on. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. She chooses to use this particular name in honor of her great-grandmother who she sees as a powerful. Like everything hooks does. Friere's work has served as a model of critical consciousness. racism and classism. Hooks describes her grandmother as: bell hooks is a prolific author. This is accomplished in most of hooks' work through the contribution of her own life experience.
hooks articulates the impact of white supremacist media influence as socialization and colonization of the mind. hooks discusses pictures in her all-black school that portrayed black people as primitive savages in loin cloths. hooks argues that this acts as a barrier to self actualization by creating a false consciousness. Let's have T-shirts and bumper stickers and Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Volume 9 Page 132 She often feels free to alter the structure or grammar of her writing depending on the audience. after gaining a better understanding of bell hooks¶ thoughts on society it would be beneficial for debaters to examine the literature in her books or online dealing with any variety of issues in society from education to politics and medicine. No matter your debate topic hooks has probably written something that applies. We have those definitions. also occurs in the classroom where students are presented with white heritage and values but not called upon to consider the history of any other cultures and when those cultures are presented they are generally shown as they are perceived by the white historians. which was obvious to her as she took the long bus ride to her all-black school. and classist educational policies. The letters at the beginning of her first and last name are lower case to how that the person is not as important as the message and in hopes that people would become more connected to her words than simply attaching themselves to a name. hooks deals with issues that are important in the lives of everyday people. FEMINISM "Feminist politics is losing momentum because feminist movement has lost clear definitions. Vernacular is another tool she uses to maintain connection with her roots as well as connections to her audience. no bussing. The prominent group controlling American mass media are white males. She argues white supremacist values continue to develop in society even today. Let's start over. Classism creates an elite group. in a capitalist society it is those with the most money.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Let's reclaim them. Patriarchy is the privileging of males over females. not very different from anything the students could relate to. sexist. The lower case letters were an attempt to avoid the status of icon but the name remains one regardless. sex or class. in a white supremacist society white individuals have the highest concentration of power thus white people are seen as superior to any other racial group. Racism privileges one group of people over another based on racial classification. racism within feminism. The bus riding process seems minor but it was one major example of the racist dehumanization young black children like bell hooks were forced to endure. representations of their value structures and a devaluing of non-white people further marginalizes those groups. social movements and educational biases. RACISM Growing up hooks attended segregated elementary schools. they just got up in the morning and went. she argues.wcdebate.com . Even the smallest elements of bell hooks¶ work are purposeful. hooks explains that the mass media plays an enormous role in the construction of images that construct America¶s social reality. capitalist culture that uses racist. Her argument is that we live in a patriarchal. This process. hooks has written so much and had such an effect on so many lives that her name is highly noted but she hope that the lower case letters at least cause people to consider what it is they have attached themselves to. legitimating standard English. She remembers getting up in the earliest hours of the morning so that she could make the long bus ride she always noticed as they passed the white school those student appeared well rested because they lived in the area where their school was located. Mass media is generally seen as a mechanism for entertainment but with the frequency that it is viewed in American society there is a tendency for individuals to accept those things consistently seen on television as normal. which seek to create a more open society free of oppression on the basis of race. and it privileges that group over disenfranchised peoples. (KILLING RAGE) There are five major angles from which hooks chooses to analyze white supremacist tendencies in society: American nationalism. It is experiences like these that cause her to point out that the ³world is more a home for white folks than it is for anyone else«´ (BONE BLACK 31). Because of this values conveyed by television play themselves out in everyday life. white supremacist. No one ever informed her that she was living in a white-supremacist nation. this essay will deal with her general theoretical arguments and the literature on those subjects. Frequently the media represents black people in subordinate roles to whites and fails to represent their reality or daily concerns. She indicts institutions and promotes a multitude of values. Let's share them. There are a few terms that are frequently used in criticisms of the structure hooks describes.
In her book. However. Though hooks advocates unity among feminists she realizes that the prevalence of racism even in the roots of the movement itself create a problem. or their critics. men are not the sole reason there is sexism in society and feminists had to eventually learn to fight the oppressive structures through sisterhood. "a movement to end sexism. they perceived them as the problem and the reason for the perpetuation of a sexist structure that allowed them to be dominant. She believes that this is a good definition of the feminism because it does not imply that men are an enemy of the movement. Because of this a more beneficial definition of the feminist movement is the one used above by hooks that provides cohesion. hooks identifies this as the most destructive force in current feminist ideology.´ She argues that most women became involved in women¶s rights movements as a result of their efforts to create change in a cultural setting. At the core of her feminist theory is the assumption that racism and sexism are intimately intertwined forms of oppression. She argues that feminists are made. may even create a new type of feminism for the ideas presented in their work. She points out that when feminist politics can be divided and connected only to equality with elite white males it prevents society from recognizing the need for revolutionary change and allows small gestures toward equality to pacify people. and that individuals who choose to advocate feminist ideals do so as a result of a conscious choice that comes from consciousness raising. RACISM DIVIDING FEMINISM Earlier it was said that there are a variety of definitions of feminism. have often felt marginalized. The women¶s movement has fractured into multiple movements based on the area certain women are most concerned with. television and radio commercials. she argues. ads everywhere and billboards. Volume 9 Page 133 postcards and hip hop music. ³acknowledge the ways politics of difference have created exploitative and oppressive power relations between women that must be contested and changed´(SKIN DEEP 272). about women becoming equal to men and she indicts the notion that feminism is anti-male. not only on feminist issues but a variety of social concerns. Occasionally an author. The goal of her writing is consciousness raising in order to overturn the ³white supremacist patriarchal system. and all manner of printed material that tells the world about feminism. We can share the simple yet powerful message that feminism is a movement to end sexist oppression. Let's start there. and oppression.wcdebate. Work on personal issues have caused feminists to group together based on their lifestyle. Let the movement begin again. While it is important that feminism address all of the structures that support oppression they have decreased some of their power by dividing on particular issues. It is broad and able to include institutionalized sexism. bell hooks is in the business of consciousness raising."(FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY 1). not born. sexist exploitation. hooks¶ argument is that these groups need to come to this realization and reunite to regain power for social change. hooks argues against the impression that feminism is only.com . These structures are mutually reinforcing and dependent. In FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY she points out: This is the reason many early feminists lashed out at men. is the heart of the matter.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www."(FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY 6) Often people will refer to the feminist movement as a collective whole and while they do tend to come together on many issues each major feminist thinker in American society has their own take on the definition and qualities of feminism. Sexism.´ This lead women to begin working on things that most affected them. As women identified structures that were hindering their self-actualization they looked to their own lives and realized that nearly all structures in American society were part of hooks¶ ³white supremacist patriarchal system. Feminists who are recognized by the media and the American culture are generally white women and black women in the movement. FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY. not division in the movement. The white supremacist culture has less difficulty recognizing upper class white women¶s experience then the experience of those generally excluded from this grouping. Issues of who perpetuates sexism or whom it is directed toward are irrelevant. When talking about a particular feminist position it is important to clarify what the author's point of view is on the subject so that everyone is functioning in the same conceptual framework. like hooks. and always. She argues that in order to rectify the problem we must. bell hooks sees feminism as. hooks¶ version of feminism is one that goes beyond traditional notions of a feminist movement that only deals with women¶s issues to include race.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Her theories work well to indict any affirmative case that does not question its own underlying assumptions. These are only a few of the many areas bell hooks has chosen to write about. The next great thing about bell hooks is her accessibility. A careful deployment of hooks¶ work can bring audiences to your side. LINCOLN-DOUGLAS DEBATE bell hooks is a wonderful resource for debaters because of her application to a wide variety of concerns. Type the name bell hooks into internet search engines and you will find tons of information. When faced with a case that advocates a particular ideology. White feminists also have been known to express connection with black women¶s experiences while completely missing their point of view all together. Volume 9 Page 134 White women often speak for black women without fully understanding their experience and thus complicating the problem with increased racist assumptions under the guise of positive social change.wcdebate. Not only can you find her work but when you sit down to read it you will not be lost. Her criticisms apply to every conceivable area of American life because she critiques the fundamental structures in which we live. This critical approach may seem most accessible for a debater on the negative who wants to critique the dominant stance of the affirmative case. in this area she not only has a vast array of works dealing with expression but also mass media and she attempts to come to grips with what society can do to move away from destructive expression without censoring out groups who are already marginalized by the dominant culture. Type her name into any library data base and you are bound to find something written by this author. The wonderful thing about hooks for debaters is that she does not simply critique. Let¶s face it though. That makes her a good person to refer to when constructing cases as well.com . Because she is so interesting people want to provide information on her. She wants to make her work something that everyone can understand the issues that are important to her. one of the most important parts of winning a debate is the ability to persuade your audience that the stance you have taken is correct. The key is finding the appropriate discussions to have with particular audiences in order to raise consciousness. Not only is her work easy to locate but it is simple to read. Manifestations of this racism can be seen in schools as well as in the workforce. Freedom of expression is another great area to use hooks¶ work. using hooks¶ work debaters should be able to uncover the problems with assumptions made in the case construction process. While white supremacist sexist society guarantees a devaluing of women¶s experiences and their bodies white women will always be better off on this structure than black women because of their race. even her publishing company has made parts of the book FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY available on their website for free. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. media and the academy. Combined with knowledge of social realities and academic subjects hooks is an author many audiences can relate to. Her use of personal experience allows her work o be passionate and compelling. she even writes interesting children¶s books! Bookstores often carry a sampling of hooks¶ major works as well. hooks will generally have something to criticize because even when someone is conscious to avoid racism and sexism they often don¶t recognize the critical role class plays in the assumptions we make about the way society functions. One of the most important issues for hooks as an author is a student¶s ability to read. debaters tend to want the information accessible on the computer as well. She looks at issues of poverty and class and discusses the ways that a feminist perspective addresses those issues. it silences their voices out of the movement further denying self actualization to this group of people. even worse. She may criticize the educational process in America but her books also discuss what can be done to alleviate detrimental effects of a problematic educational system. She provides a unique perspective for creating practical approaches to societal issues. Whatever the flaw. Finally. Having the dominant culture speak for black women in the movement is not only damaging because it creates misunderstanding but.
1994. WOUNDS OF PASSION: A WRITING LIFE. hooks. 1996. Westport: Bergin & Garvey. Albany: State University of New York Press. hooks. New York: Henry Holt. 1995. New York: Henry Holt. 1995. Golden. 1995 hooks. 1999. bell.wcdebate. hooks. Boston: South End Press. Olsen. Cambridge: South End Press.´ LIFE NOTES (ed. hooks. WOMEN WRITING CULTURE. Namulundah. 1998. hooks. BONE BLACK:MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD. ³Black Woman Artist Becoming. New York: Henry Holt and Company. bell. FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY. KILLING RAGE: ENDING RACISM. New York: Doubleday.W. Norton & Company. BELL HOOKS¶ ENGAGED PEDAGOGY: A TRANSGRESSIVE EDUCATION FOR CRITICAL CONCIOUSNESS. bell. SKIN DEEP: BLACK WOMEN & WHITE WOMEN WRITE ABOUT RACE. bell.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. bell.com . 1990. bell. YEARNING: RACE GENDER AND CULTURAL POLITICS. Patricia Bell-Scott). Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 2000. Gary A. Volume 9 Page 135 BIBLIOGRAPHY Florence. and Elizabeth Hirsh. Marita and Susan Richards Shreeve. New York: W.
but threaten their very existence. BELL HOOKS¶ ENGAGED PEDAGOGY: A TRANSGRESSIVE EDUCATION FOR CRITICAL CONCIOUSNESS. BELL HOOKS¶ ENGAGED PEDAGOGY: A TRANSGRESSIVE EDUCATION FOR CRITICAL CONCIOUSNESS. gender. This strategy of colonialism needed no country. hooks succinctly states: In the beginning black folks were most effectively colonized via the structure of ownership. THINKING BLACK. 2. p. white supremacy could be effectively maintained by the institutionalization of social apartheid and by creating a philosophy of racial inferiority that would be taught for everyone. 1998. Westport: Bergin & Garvey. Embedded in the logic of assimilation is the white-supremacist assumption that blackness must be eradicated so that a new self. (1981. Namulundah Florence. 1996). Historically. hooks. In a white supremacist society. currently policy makers(Banks. 14. 1998. Of course. colonization of the continent led to the institution of economic. educational. feeling and knowing as the norm.109). for the space it sought to own and conquer was the minds of blacks (1995. AMERICAN SOCIETY HAS A WHITE SUPREMACIST CULTURE. Volume 9 Page 136 RACISM PERMEATES US CULTURE 1. unlike Northern and Western European immigrants. feminist and multicultural critics highlight the fallacy behind mainstream norms and practices. 1995. a ³white´ self. p. p. However. in America. as I observe them suffer in ways that not only inhibit their ability t perform academically. McNaught. adjunct faculty member in Fordham Univeristy¶s Graduate School of Education and College of Bussiness. adjunct faculty member in Fordham Univeristy¶s Graduate School of Education and College of Bussiness.. It is argued that a pervasive false consciousness is reinforced in society due to the sanctioning of exclusive ways of being. these values and traditions are racial. 67. and Mexican Americans faced greater challenges in trying to assimilate as a result of possessing different cultural traits and characteristics from the mainstream (Banks. in this case. and political structures that primarily served the interests of the colonizers . Westport: Bergin & Garvey. can come into being. 1989. p. TALKING BACK: THINKING FEMINIST. White people¶s values. Once slavery ended. While assimilation is seen as an approach that ensures the successful entry of black people into the mainstream. 1994. at its very core it is dehumanizing. In the United States. ASSIMILATION HAS A DESTRUCTIVE EFFECT ON BLACK STUDENTS bell hooks. Students from marginalized cultures find their primary cultural values and traditions inadequately represented and/or denied.58). AMERICAN CULTURAL BIAS IS ROOTED IN COLONIZATION Namulundah Florence.wcdebate.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Critical. Insisting on the primacy of racial discrimination. this very effort promotes and fosters serious psychological stress and even severe mental illness.122) 3. The subordination of one group¶s cultural traits and characteristics has significant impact in marginalized students¶ experiences of schools and/or incorporation of official curricula. traditions. Boston: South End Press. Anglo-Saxon sociocultural traditions functioned as a ³prerequsite to social acceptability and access to the political structure´ (Banks 1988. and practices are engrained in social policies and norms serving as basic criteria for social and economic mobility. 11. since we who are black can never be white. p. and class specific. 1988. Chinese Americans. just as racism overshadowed any bonding between black women and white women on the basis of sex. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.com . p. Essentially. hooks contends: Racism took precedence over sexual alliances in both the white world¶s interaction with Native Americans and African Americans. Nelson et al. groups such as African Americans. 1992. 1996). 1988. My concern about the process of assimilation has deepened as I hear black students express pain and hurt.
thinking we are trying to take something from each other (whether it is the privileged white woman who thinking that a black woman is trying to take some of her power from her or to make herself more powerful or it is black women feeling like thee are these white women who have everything and want more). with different ³inherent´ characteristics. Feminist theory needs to study historically. suspicious ways that we often view white women. np. that concerns itself with ending sexism and sexist oppression in our diverse communities. ³A Conversation About Race and Class. And I would say vice versa as well. Associate Professor of English and Women¶s Studies at Oberlin College. To advance this agenda we would need to rethink our notions of manhood and womanhood. to be capable of being both strong and weak. active and passive. professor. the labeling of black women who engage in feminist thinking as race traitors is meant to prevent us From embracing feminist politics as surely as white power feminism acts to exclude our voices and silence our critiques. CRITICAL EXAMINATION OF THE INTERSECTIONS OF RACE AND SEX IS KEY bell hooks. with the understanding that both categories are synonymous with selfhood. social critic. 1995. I don¶t think we really understand either historically or in terms of contemporary circumstances why we view each other in such incredibly negative terms. it is clear that we cannot create a cultural climate where these conditions exist without first committing ourselves to a feminist agenda that is specific to black life. a strengthened when black males and females participate as equals in daily life and struggle.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 1995. Volume 9 Page 137 THE INTERSECTIONAL APPROACH IS BEST 1. author. FEMINISM ALLOWS THE BREAKDOWN THE RACIAL DIVISIONS AMONG WOMEN bell hooks. Often this condescension merely masks the allegiance to sexism and patriarchal thinking in black life. to assume that black folks. I want to privilege political commitment because in this culture we do not emphasize enough that you can choose to be politically committed in ways that change your behavior and action.75. particularly sexist black men. If we start with the premise that black liberation struggle.´ CONFLICTS IN FEMINISM. we would acknowledge it in relation to biology: boys become men. Ours task in parenting and in education would be to encourage in both females and males the capacity to be holistic. author. In this case both groups are acting to protect and maintain the privileges. INCORPORATION OF FEMINISM IS NECESSARY FOR BLACK LIBERATION bell hooks. however relative. 2. yet black women don¶t unequivocally view white males in the hostile. we would need to recognize biological differences without seeing them as markers of specific gender traits. 1990. p. What do you do when you are not privileged and have contact with a privileged woman of any race? Or when there is race and class difference? What gives us a space to bond? These are questions we have had trouble answering. despite the continued overt racism and racist agendas of those groups of white women who can most easily lay claim to the term ³feminism´ and project their conservative and reactionary agendas. KILLING RAGE: ENDING RACISM.. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. social critic. and all our efforts at self-determination. Women seem to be particularly threatened when our differences are marked by class privilege. particularly sexist black men. 3. etc. KILLING RAGE: ENDING RACISM. Rather than defining manhood in relation to sexuality. to assume that black females are incapable of embracing revolutionary feminism in ways that would enhance rather than diminish black liberation. sociologically. and anthropologically how we see one another and why it has been so hard or us to change how we see one another. Certainly. We need to do more work examining the reasons white women and black women of all classes view one another with suspicion.wcdebate. This would mean no longer thinking that it is ³natural´ for boys to be strong and girls to be weak. and Mary Childers. professor. New York: Routledge. Surely it is patriarchal condescension that leads black folks. that they receive in the existing social structure. p. girls women. in response to specific contexts. New York: Henry Holt. p. 69. Certainly as a group white males have been more oppressive to black women. New York: Henry Holt.com . for boys to be active and girls to be passive. Rather than continuing to see them as opposites.
Healthier. hooks (who insists on the lowercase letters) has nothing but disdain for "reformists" like Estrich who sought only to claim the "class privilege" their brothers enjoyed. Hook's interview actually reinforces white-male-dominated patriarchal ideas she built her career fighting. Volume 9 Page 138 HOOKS' CRITICISM IS INEFFECTIVE 1. co-author (with Linda Waite) of The Case for Marriage: Why Married People Are Happier. 53.Bell Hooks interviewing Jada Pinkett for Essence . Black people and especially artists are often pigeonholed. Maybe. lulled into a more "comfortable" and "middle class" existence.wcdebate. I was surprised by what I read. television and radio commercials. In the past hooks has defended this move by arguing she should be allowed to "grow" and should not be pigeonholed. 50. Her follow-up works equally impressed me.a potentially informing. An unreconstructed black radical feminist. Which is exactly bell hook¶s complaint." hooks is equally disdainful of what she calls "lifestyle feminism. yet at one point. B1. in recent year Hooks' work seems to have gone the direction of pop culture rather than a critique of dominant culture. "While it was in the interest of mainstream white supremacist capitalist patriarchy to suppress visionary feminist thinking reformist feminists were also eager to silence these forces. love goes the way of BMW's. empowering article for Black women. Equally hard to explain is her naive idea that all that prevents the triumph of radical feminism is bad marketing: "Let's start over. Let's have T-shirts and bumper stickers and postcards and hip-hop music. Yes. NATIONAL REVIEW vol. It is clear from her Essence interview the "rage of youth" in Ain't I a Woman is gone. Hooks was an important player in developing Black feminist theory. Like Jada. However." I wish I could tell you in more detail what hook¶s revolution might look like." 2. I was impressed with her passion in telling the historical oppression of Black women in America. aside from abortion on demand and contraceptives for all. Posing as a "feminist author" Bell Hooks' interview with Jada Pinkett in the March issue of Essence magazine falls short of her used-to-be scathing critiques of dominant culture.com . ads everywhere and billboards.´ MICHIGAN CITIZEN. I was initially excited by the cover story . She began Ain't I a Woman in college. ³For bell. like the older civil rights generation. HOOKS FAILS TO PROVIDE AN ADEQUATE ALTERNATIVE VISION Maggie Gallagher. I read Hooks' first book as a young women in college. Kelly. staff writer. Bell Hooks and her BMW have disappointed me for the last time. p. and Better Off Financially.her passion lost. and all manner of printed material that tells the world that feminism is a movement to end sexist oppression. she has gone mainstream . but in 123 pages she never gets around to explaining what "ending sexist oppression" means. 3/14/98.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. p. HOOKS' FASCINATION WITH POP CULTURE WEAKENS HER CRITIQUE Catharine R. Buppiedom and Big Houses. 1/22/2001. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Reformist feminism became their route to class mobility." in which "the politics was slowly removed from feminism.
288-290. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.´ ³Multidimensionality. a growing intellectual movement has emerged that responds to racism within gay and lesbian circles and heterosexism within antiracist activism. The HRC endorsement controversy reflects broader. Multidimensionality. and poverty studies. therefore. and the social identity categories around which social power and disempowerment are distributed.. These "postintersectionality" scholars are collectively pushing jurists and progressive theorists to examine forms of subordination as interrelated.´ and the Development of an Adequate Theory of Subordination. In particular. Southern Methodist University School of Law. law and sexuality. for example. The intersectionality scholarship has inspired helpful analyses in areas outside of the contexts of feminism and antiracism.com . single-issue politics and have proposed reforms in a variety of doctrinal and policy contexts.A. Yale Law School. p. These scholars.´ MICHIGAN JOURNAL OF RACE & LAW. Assistant Professor. Their work on the intersectionality of subordination has encouraged some judges and progressive scholars to discard the "separate spheres" analysis of race and gender. gays and lesbians of color. University of Pennsylvania. the "post-intersectionality" theorists have offered several improvements to the intersectionality model. I have examined the relationships among racism.´ and the Development of an Adequate Theory of Subordination.. critical race theory..West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.´ MICHIGAN JOURNAL OF RACE & LAW.D. p.. J. heterosexism.. Lesbian-feminist theorists. While essentialism remains a prominent feature of progressive social movements. the positioning of progressive movements as oppositional and conflicting forces. J. patriarchy. OPPOSITIONAL STRUCTURES OF RACE AND SEX BECOME BARRIERS TO COALITIONS Lennard Hutchinson. Lesbian feminists." Multidimensionality "recognizes the inherent complexity of systems of oppression . phenomena.A.D. and class oppression utilizing a model I refer to as "multidimensionality. Feminists of color and other critical scholars have examined racism and patriarchy as "intersecting" phenomena. Volume 9 Page 139 MULTIDIMENSIONALITY IS SUPERIOR TO INTERSECTIONALITY 1. Spring 2001. class domination. and the failure to recognize the multidimensional and complex nature of subordination. The feminist of color critiques of feminism and antiracism provided the earliest framework for analyzing oppression in complex terms. B. MULTIDIMENSIONALITY ALLOWS THE EXAMINATION OF MULTIPLE INTERSECTIONS Lennard Hutchinson. 309-310. 2. In a series of articles. have challenged the patriarchy and heterosexism of law and sexuality and feminist theorists. Southern Methodist University School of Law. and heterosexism. University of Pennsylvania. Although heavily influenced by intersectional analysis.. recently. patriarchy." Multidimensionality posits that the various forms of identity and oppression are "inextricably and forever intertwined" and that essentialist equality theories "invariably reflect the experiences of class-and race-privileged" individuals. whose work examines the relationships among racism. critical scholars have offered persuasive arguments against traditional. Assistant Professor. Yale Law School.wcdebate. The powerful intersectionality model has also inspired many other avenues of critical engagement. Spring 2001. and. race-sexuality critics. and other scholars have utilized the intersectional model in order to counter essentialism in feminism. ³Symposium Article: Identity Crisis: ³Intersectionality. arises out of and is informed by intersectionality theory. respectively. have also examined the experiences of persons who suffer from intersecting forms of marginalization and have proposed policies to address the reality of complex subordination. structural problems in antisubordination theory: the embrace of essentialist politics. like the intersectionality theorists. are currently developing a sizeable body of scholarship that extends intersectionality theory into new substantive and conceptual terrains. rather than as separate and mutually exclusive systems of domination. rather than as potential alliances and coalitions. rather than conflicting. ³Symposium Article: Identity Crisis: ³Intersectionality.´ ³Multidimensionality. B.
PRESENT TECHNIQUES. Monash University. Australia on July 6. EMBRYO EXPERIMENTATION in 1990. He was a senior scholar in the Fullbright Program. THE REPRODUCTION REVOLUTION: NEW WAYS OF MAKING BABIES (co-author with Deane Wells) in 1984. He is the author of the major article on ethics in the current edition of the ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA. AND FUTURE POSSIBILITIES in 1982.´ and democracy. For example. Instead. and co-director of the Institute for Ethics and Public Policy. IN DEFENCE OF ANIMALS in 1985. Singer understands that extending rights to animals seems a bit far-fetched.or ways of avoiding thinking -. ANIMAL RIGHTS AND HUMAN OBLIGATIONS: AN ANTHOLOGY in 1976. RETHINKING LIFE AND DEATH: THE COLLAPSE OF OUR TRADITIONAL ETHICS in 1994. Even careful readers of his works will disagree. and again turns to the women¶s rights movement as an example. and Princeton University (where he currently is a professor). ANIMAL FACTORIES (co-author with James Mason) in 1980. a woman can claim that she has a right to an abortion. ANIMAL LIBERATION: A NEW ETHICS FOR OUR TREATMENT OF ANIMALS in 1975. and ETHICS INTO ACTION: HENRY SPIRA AND THE ANIMAL RIGHTS MOVEMENT in 1998. New York University. He has lectured at Radcliff. ETHICAL AND LEGAL ISSUES IN GUARDIANSHIP OPTIONS FOR INTELLECTUALLY DISADVANTAGED PEOPLE (co-author with Terry Carney) in 1986. the Director of the Center for Human Bioethics. Women were given the Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. he was given a professorship at Princeton University amid much controversy. His works have appeared in nineteen languages. 1946. While at Monash University.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. instead of classifying those of other races or women as less deserving of rights. we classify members of other species as undeserving. TEST-TUBE BABIES: A GUIDE TO MORAL QUESTIONS. In 1998. HUMANS AND PERSONS: QUESTIONS OF LIFE AND DEATH (Co-author with Helga Kuhse) in 1994.about them. with what he has to say or will reject some of the premises upon which he bases his arguments. As the President of the University noted. At age 30. He explains that conceding the differences in beings does not mean they are unworthy of equality. whereas a man cannot physically require an abortion and so does not have this right. His writings include discussion of issues like animal rights. But Singer explains that equality can be extended with attention paid to detail. Singer was a professor at the Center for Human Bioethics. A COMPANION TO ETHICS in 1991. PRACTICAL ETHICS in 1979.wcdebate. and was awarded the National Book Council of Australia Banjo Award for non-fiction in 1995. and thinks that they have gotten rid of the last form of discrimination. Peter Singer¶s educational experiences include a BA with honors from the University of Melbourne in 1967. He also reminds us that for a long period of time. liberation movements for minorities and women seemed far-fetched. INDIVIDUALS. Now. 1 When he was hired at Princeton University. what makes an individual or creature a ³person. His works include DEMOCRACY AND DISOBEDIENCE in 1973. SHOULD THE BABY LIVE? THE PROBLEM OF HANDICAPPED INFANTS (co-author with Helga Kuhse) in 1985. HOW ARE WE TO LIVE? ETHICS IN AN AGE OF SELF-INTEREST in 1995. He was awarded a fellowship by the Academy of Humanities and the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia. he began his teaching career and has been teaching and writing since. an MA from the University of Melbourne in 1969. sometimes quite vehemently. the decision was met with much enthusiasm and controversy. 3 The barrier that causes society to not extend rights to animals is their view that these species are fundamentally different.com . it was widely criticized as absurd. MARX in 1980. La Trobe University. HEGEL in 1982. they merely need different considerations. Volume 9 Page 140 PETER SINGER Peter Singer was born in Melbourne. but that society has since realized its mistake. He believes that society has become far too complacent. ³But some of the controversy arises from the fact that he works on difficult and provocative topics and in many cases challenges long-established ways of thinking -. When Mary Wollstonecraft published her VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN in 1792. and a BA in philosophy from the University of Oxford in 1971.´ 2 SINGER AND HISTORICAL OPPRESSION Singer uses a comparison of ³speciesism´ to the historical concepts of racism and sexism.
differing abilities to communicate effectively. Perhaps the conflict of interests is not real. 4 Singer concedes that there exist important differences between animals and people. however.wcdebate. Thus. It would also mean that Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and explains how it is not necessary for a healthy diet. Equality.´ 5 This helps to further clarify the notion that equality does not mean an extension of the exact same rights. His critics claim that the reason why infants should be included in the criteria of intelligence and reasoning is because they have the potential to develop those things. a criteria based on equality only in certain circumstances fails. The proposed criterion are ways to determine who is worth of having equality extended to them. 6 This consideration is based on two things. differing intellectual abilities. and not merely an assertion of fact. Singer offers the following definition: ³The basic principle of equality. The first idea that Singer deconstructs is the notion that equal consideration should hold until there is a clash between the interests of humans and nonhuman animals. Fundamentally. After noting the similarity this principle holds with the racist and sexist policies of the past. strength. He poses the hypothetical situation of an experiment that needs testing. But because we believe our interests are always in conflict. their interests must be given equal consideration to human interests or any other animal¶s interest. But if a creature can suffer. and a decision can cause that suffering. ³Humans come in different in different shapes and sizes. or other matters. like intelligence. we will never give equal consideration. factual equality comes with no guarantee that the abilities and capacities that humans have are distributed evenly throughout the population.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. according to Singer. Volume 9 Page 141 right to vote because they are capable of rational decision making just like men are. That is. Singer is quick to explain the problem with this criterion: it necessarily excludes humans who are infants and those who have mental defects.´ 7 These differences make it nearly impossible to create a criteria that encompasses all of humanity. CRITERIA FOR EXTENSION OF EQUALITY Critics of Peter Singer often offer criteria that attempts to include all of humanity and exclude non-human animals. Singer notes how much money and resources it requires to raise animals for food. is sentience. Another proposed criterion to decide upon the extension of equality is intelligence or the capability to reason. 8 There are a few other arguments that Singer answers. then they cannot have interests. and differing capacities to experience pleasure and pain. Singer explains that if fails since our interests are constructed to always be in conflict with other species. do not have that same capability and should not be allowed the right to vote. I shall argue. and use them to do our labor. would that be ok? Singer responds with another hypothetical situation: would the experimenter be prepared to conduct the study using a human infant? If he is not. We eat them. they come with differing moral capacities. then it is simple discrimination. His critics often ask. differing amounts of benevolent feeling and sensitivity to the needs of others. Singer notes that. a new criteria becomes necessary. The criteria agreed upon by Singer. wear them. Others have proposed differing criterion that Singer responds to. Singer¶s notion of equality is that it is a moral ideal. A difference in ability documented in fact does not justify any difference in the consideration we give them. as noted above. In his All Animals are Equal. is equality of consideration for different beings may lead to different treatment and different rights. If a creature cannot suffer. and the second is if they have interests. moral capacity. however. Dogs. creates divisions between humanity. the determining factor is the capacity to suffer or experience happiness. rather. The first is the ability of a being to suffer. Because the notion of basing equality on a fact. is not descriptive of they way beings are. This would mean that individuals with mental defects still would not be included. THE DEFINITION OF EQUALITY Before we can explore the ways in which Singer believes equality should be extended. Furthermore. but that does not mean that the basic principle of extending equality to non-human animals is invalid. if harming one animal in tests could save thousands. points out that all of the proposed criterion exclude some of humanity while including some non-human animals. it is a prescription of the way beings should be treated. we must first have a clear understanding of how he defines equality. Singer¶s ideas here begin with the notion that not all human beings are the same.com . Singer.
Critics of Singer say that his criteria for declaring someone a person are ³rationality and self awareness over time. Those who advocate this position. Rolston says value comes from having a respect for life. such as ³the intrinsic dignity of the human individual. . Singer argues that you would conduct environmental policy with regards to the interest of those who are granted the status of person. Singer maintains that this idea only holds up when it goes unquestioned and assumed. Singer dismantles this position by noting that a plant doesn¶t have a choice as to whether or not it grows toward the light for its own interest. 13 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. policy decisions would be made to protect the environment in the interest of persons. critics of Singer argue that those with mental defects should still be extended equality. and runs through Judeo-Christian doctrines. to plants.com . and fish. those with significant mental retardation. and that even plants are pursuing their own good.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and a river is seeking its own good to reach the sea.´12 The implications of this view outlined by Rolston are those of an anthropocentric society. He supports his idea with the thoughts of Paul Taylor. indeed to care for a biospheric Earth. Volume 9 Page 142 sperm and eggs would also have to garner equal treatment as a full-grown being. After all. chickens. human embryos. that ³Singer has proven himself blind to the still larger effort in environmental ethics to value life at all its ranges and levels. however. therefore. would be considered persons. It leaves us searching for the characteristic that all humans possess and other animals don¶t that would qualify them for intrinsic dignity.´9 This dates back to the ideals of the Renaissance and humanists. the total amount of happiness will be greater if the disabled infant is killed. the good of a missile is to blow up and should be considered. and more specifically. those with some forms of psychosis. human fetuses.wcdebate. fellow humans are not eager to disagree with the view that they are members of the highest order. Here Singer enters territory that offends many and has helped to create a feeling of hatred towards him. Singer notes that this is couched in many elegant phrasings. The final argument Singer addresses is that humans have an intrinsic dignity. Singer goes on to add that by the logic of those who advocate looking to plant¶s interests. rather it is just what the plant does and cannot be anything else. Singer writes. many animals." 11 While many people disagree with Singer¶s position. . Once we ask the question as to why all humans have this worth we are only taken back to the previous issue. Rolston concedes that our views regarding ethics prior to Singer were too humanist. but cannot articulate why their criteria of intelligence and reasoning apply. few are able to articulate a standard that includes all types of humanity and excludes all non-human animals. Singer questions this criticism by pondering how we assign value if not based on sentience. and therefore be seen as unworthy of equality. like dogs and bears. Since those persons depend on the environment. Therefore. This would include brain-damaged people. In PRACTICAL ETHICS. be right to kill him. However.´10 This leads many beings to not get classified as persons.´ or that ³humans are ends in themselves. INTERPRETATIONS OF SINGER¶S CRITERIA While Singer does frequently make reference to the fact that most proposed criterion would include some animals but exclude infants and those with mental defects. an environmental ethic that is based on human needs does not often differ in policy recommendations from an environmental ethic based on the biosphere as its center. who details that every living organism has a will to live. SINGER AND BIOCENTRISM Holmes Rolston III and some green philosophers argue that Singer¶s position is detrimental to biocentrism. Again. ³"When the death of a disabled infant will lead to the birth of another infant with better prospects of a happy life. interpretations of these references is varied and controversial. However. The loss of the happy life for the first infant is outweighed by the gain of a happier life for the second. too focused on people. if the killing of the hemophiliac infant has no adverse effect on others it would . He also explains. find themselves in a precarious situation without the ability to distinguish a defining characteristic.
³As the subject of this book is one that concerns not only those studying or teaching political philosophy in universities but also any citizens. does raising animals for food cause more benefit than harm? R. The confinement that these animals endure. He says. however. but to change it. This perception that philosophy is not just for the academically inclined and is not to be merely kept in books and the classroom helps to distinguish Singer from not only his contemporaries but philosophers throughout history.M. Volume 9 Page 143 ³THE GOOD OF THE ANIMAL´ Some have argued (and attempted to use Singer¶s utilitarian framework to do so) that raising animals to eat is not causing them to suffer. The second is that in Singer¶s work. who find themselves faced with a law they oppose. 16 Singer feels that a discussion of an argument. the way we should strive to make things. is irrelevant and uninteresting unless it calls for an action in a way that individuals can have power. Singer argues that allowing death is as bad as causing death. PRACTICAL ETHICS The philosophy of Singer is based on the idea of practical ethics. the absence of a benefit is not harm. Singer discusses the ideas of our responsibility in world famine. First. or the distance between an individual and a famine. Here. However. Practical ethics have three primary characteristics. If humans simply took advantage of the fact that animals died. The first is that it is revisionary. he notes that mere existence is not in itself a benefit. it would still not justify the use of the creatures as a means to an end.wcdebate. This is why Singer discusses action as well as right and wrong. especially citizens of a democracy. the painful ways in which they are killed. all suggest a lack of concern for the animals. Hare takes the position that it is not.´ 14 Singer answers this claim on several levels. An understanding of the way things are is necessary to determine the way things should be. From a utilitarian perspective. but few have gone so far as Singer in making it a primary goal explicitly explained to his readers and audiences. I have tried to write throughout to write in a way that can easily be understood by those who have never studied philosophy. Any advocacy of valuing progress. even if it is a short one. the disease and filthy living conditions. SINGER IN DEBATE Singer¶s framework is particularly useful for calling into question the underlying assumptions of your opponent. In Democracy and Disobedience. We cannot compare what an animal would have in nature to what they would have in a farm. The creature would be allowed to live without human interference. humanity. its purpose is to not merely explain the world and the way it works. Second. etc. a counter-advocacy of a value that encompasses all those considered ³persons´ would be more beneficial. in order for an action against an animal to be wrong. ³For it is better for an animal to live a happy life. whether is causes more benefit than harm. The question then becomes.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. growth.com . facts matter. an understanding of a position. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. This position is initially weakened by the fact that it ignores the entire premise that killing animals in any way could be simply wrong. A third is that there is an assumption that individual action can make a difference. that is. Most importantly.´ 15 Singer¶s view of accessibility extends to the way people use philosophy. Many philosophers and their positions seem to invite action. so breeding a new existence is not some sort of net gain for the animal. than no life at all. will most likely rest on the assumption that humans are inherently more valuable than non-human animals. that is. Unless your opponent can identify why that belief is justified. Complacently allowing death to happen is just as morally and ethically wrong as dong the killing yourself. The implications of the distinction between causing a death and allowing a death carry over from the realm of non-human animals into the world of humanity as well. why he tries to make his work easy to read and applicable to individuals. is no justification for a lack of action. it must cause suffering. Singer explains how philosophy should be accessible to everyone by noting. He first alludes to the notion that philosophy and ethics should entail action in the introduction to a book that developed from his thesis project at Oxford. Singer claims that proximity. engaging the argument still yields some debate. Singer notes that the way animal production works within the system does not take into account animal suffering. even if the benefit that this existence creates is good.
or student. All Animals are Equal. The effect of this is that the question of the equality of other animals does not confront the philosopher. Respect for Life: Counting what Singer Finds of no Account.wcdebate. Singer and the Practical Ethics Movement. It calls for a justification of the superiority of human beings that does not rely on rhetoric such as.princeton.´ 17 A critical discussion of what makes beings equal must escape the normalcy of an assumption that humans are and animals aren¶t. 9 Peter Singer. http://www. and academics. Hare.and this is already an indication of the failure of philosophy to challenge accepted beliefs. Peter Singer Gets a Chair.´ It also calls for a questioning of the basic assumptions of the age.M. 7 Peter Singer. All Animals are Equal. These lines of study all rely heavily on the superiority of humanity.html 2 Princeton Weekly Bulletin. 1993. in moral and political philosophy. 14 R. Counter values that rely on inclusive values of animals and all life are much more preferable. Wesley J. and use animals to further human aims. 15 Peter Singer.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. medicine. 8 Peter Singer. 1973. 10 Smith. __________________________________________________________________________________ 1 http://www. 1998 3 Peter Singer.com/ 12 Holmes Rolston.com . 1993.com/ 11 Smith. December 7. 16 Dale Jamieson. 5 Peter Singer. All Animals are Equal.frontpagemag. 1999.frontpagemag. All Animals are Equal. Democracy and Disobedience. Respect for Life: Counting what Singer Finds of no Account. 13 Holmes Rolston. as an issue itself. Singer also offers a critique of modern philosophy that can be applied in many ways. 4 Peter Singer. Wesley J. All Animals are Equal. 1999. 6 Peter Singer. Volume 9 Page 144 Singer¶s advocacy also has implications to any topics that particularly deal with science. http://www. 17 Peter Singer. ³It is the significant problem of equality. All Animals are Equal. All Animals are Equal. Peter Singer Gets a Chair.edu/~uchv/index. is invariably formulated in terms of human equality. Essays on Bioethics. ³intrinsic worth of humanity. All Animals are Equal Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.
1993). CA: Wadsworth Publishing Company. Singer. ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICS: READINGS IN THEORY AND APPLICATION. Peter. Pojman. Dale. (Lanham. Singer. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Peter. ETHICS. R. Singer. Terrence and Richard Dagger. (Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1997). 2002). SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. Singer. ESSAYS ON BIOETHICS. ANIMAL LIBERATION: A NEW ETHICS FOR OUR TREATMENT OF ANIMALS. (New York: Longman. 2nd ed. MD: Rowman and Littlefield. 1999). ETHICS INTO ACTION: HENRY SPIRA AND THE ANIMAL RIGHTS MOVEMENT. 1973). 1994). 1975).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 1993). Peter. Hare.. (Oxford: Claredon Press. Volume 9 Page 145 BIBLIOGRAPHY Ball. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Jamieson. (Malden. DEMOCRACY AND DISOBEDIENCE. Louis J. 1998).M. PRACTICAL ETHICS.com . (Belmont. (New York: Review/Random House. IDEALS AND IDEOLOGIES. Singer.wcdebate. Peter. Mass: Blackwell Publishers Ltd. Peter. (Oxford: Oxford University Press.
we will lose precisely that dimension of the personal that produces ethics in the first place. there is the very real danger that. but in fact it is simply a point about the very concept of experience. This may seem like a major provision. Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers University. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. in over-enlarging the circle to include everyone and everything or in turning from the personal to the impersonality of reason . which may well produce much caring and many kindnesses but will also provoke rivalry and competition. Austin. Putatively ownerless pain sensations have no moral weight.wcdebate. will degenerate into a diffuse and ultimately pointless sentimentality. p. the social sense as such.69.. p.) So.. as Hume was (partially) inclined to suppose.by Frege¶s point. 1789. Philosopher and Jurist.com . The natural sensibility that is at issue here is nothing so lofty as love or even universal care. If the basis of ethics is personal feeling for those we care about. The day may come when the rest of the animal creation may acquire those rights which never could have been witholden from them but by the hand of tyranny. in other words. what would it avail? The question is not. The basic biological sense we seek.. instead of building on our natural impulses. The danger is that reason. TOO MUCH FOCUS ON RATIONALITY DESTROYS DIVERSITY AS AN IDEAL Robert C. Volume 9 Page 146 SPECIESISM IS THE NEW RACISM 1. rather. thus refusing to grant genuine selfhood to animals. or perhaps the faculty or discourse? But a full-grown horse or dog is beyond comparison a more rational. to speak of experiences at all is already to assume bearers for them. XVII. If we conceive of animal pain in this subjectless way. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. There is the very familiar danger that such feelings. The point is that we should not think of animal pain as intrinsically ³ownerless.An experience always comes with an owner built into it. 152153. since pain matters only because it is pain for someone. Can they reason? nor Can they talk? but. The French have already discovered that the blackness of the skin is no reason why a human being should be abandoned without a redress to the caprice of a tormentor. called agape. that form of hypocrisy that 9as has often been said of such ³lovers of humanity´ as Rousseau and Marx) adores the species but deplores almost every individual of it.´ Animal minds are not just bundles of subjectless sensations gathered around a single body. they necessarily have selves. It may one day come to be recognized that the number of legs. Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. or even a month. (This is so whether or not the experiences are conceived to be embodied in an organism. Thus it is wrong to cause them pain. but rather a kind of kinship or fellow-feeling. What else is it that should trace the insuperable line? Is it the faculty of reason. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. then we will not see why it is morally significant. It is not that you bundle some inherently ownerless experiences together and get a self. because this will necessarily be pain for a subject of consciousness. or worse. In other words. than an infant of a day. REALIZATION OF THE FAULT OF RACISM IS LIKE REALIZING THE FAULT OF SPECIESISM Jeremy Bentham. Can they suffer? 2. 1999. But I want to be equally cautious about premature enthusiasm for those universal feelings of love. and one that threatens to exclude animal experience from the moral realm. or the termination of the os sacrum. 3. Solomon. however noble their object or intent. 1999. since animals have experiences. McGinn. old. animals need to be granted selves if their sensations are to matter morally. or a week. ch. is not so much a particular attitude or emotion as it is a sense of belonging.subjects of experience. the villosity of the skin. as well a more conversable animal. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. are reasons equally insufficient for abandoning a sensitive being to the same fate. SPECIESISM ATTEMPTS TO LOWER GROUPS JUST AS RACISM DID Colin. which have been defended by some of the great (and not-so-great) religious thinkers of the world. But suppose they were otherwise. may instead undermine them. since the alleged pain is not painful to a subject of awareness.
Cook County charged Mr. Volume 9 Page 147 REJECTING THE CRITERIA OF RATIONALITY IS BENEFICIAL 1. gives himself up. Yet many of those who would never act on his conclusions still agree that if an infant really had no hope of happiness. Therefore. EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE COUNTER-INTUITIVE Michael Specter. When the death of a disabled infant will lead to the birth of another infant with better prospects of a happy life. Critics often accuse Mr." That was April 26. WHY ARE WE AFRAID OF PETER SINGER?.73.com . 1989. half an hour later. the child dies.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.wcdebate. THE DANGEROUS PHILOSOPHER. 1999. Austin. When Samuel is free of the respirator at last. animals display a remarkable array of strategic behaviors. 10 March 2000.the tit-for-tat attitude as such. when a grand jury refused to indict him. one must (to some extent) acquire such skills but it doesn¶t follow that such skills are not also (or may not alternatively be) genetically engineered or that the general capacity for strategic behavior. keeping nurses at bay with a gun while he disconnects the respirator that for eight months has kept his comatose infant son Samuel alive. Then Linares puts down the gun and. Good game players usually describe their own skill in non-intellectual terms. Linares with first-degree murder. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. the total amount of happiness will be greater if the disabled infant is killed. and Singer knows that. monkeys fooling one another by uttering a misleading cry to distract the others. A good poker player doesn¶t sit skimming a mathematical odds book on the one hand and a psychology of facial expressions text on the other. be right to kill him. weeping. So. FOCUSING ON RATIONALITY DESTROYS INTUITION AND DEVALUES IT Robert C. even Darwin himself seems to have erred in giving too much credit here to the role of ³reason´ and not enough to heredity. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS.without any need on our part to postulate Pentagon-like tactical mentality behind their behavior. 2. she doesn¶t calculate it. Few people will ever consider infants replaceable in the way that they consider free-range chickens replaceable. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. A good billiards or pool player simply ³sees´ the shot. They ³just know´ what to do. The New Yorker. a man who measures happiness in numbers and considers love a replaceable resource. death would be more merciful than a life governed by misery.must not be so engineered. But to him the symbol of the "tragic farce" brought on by an inhumane adherence to the sanctity-of-life principle is "Rudy Linares. p. Successful traders and businessmen often claim (truthfully) that they don¶t ³think´ about what they are doing. Linares cradles him in his arms until. standing in a hospital ward. a twenty-three-year-old Chicago housepainter. too. In such cases. September 6.mother birds pretending to have broken wings to lead predators away from the nest. Of course. it would. but the criminal case was over by May. The Chronicle of Higher Education. The loss of happy life for the first infant is outweighed by the gain of a happier life for the second. EUTHENASIA ALLOWS GREATER HAPPINESS FOR ALL Jeff Sharlet. according to the total view. Solomon. but to attribute strategic skill to heredity is not to relegate it to merely automatic behavior. Singer of being cold-hearted. SINGER MAKES STRONG ARGUMENTS. 1999. p. writer. It is not necessarily thinking or negotiating that are essential here. np. 3. if killing the hemophiliac infant has no adverse effect on others.
p. We respect the interests of men and give them priority over dogs not insofar as they are rational. RATIONALITY DEFINES A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HUMANITY AND ANIMALS Robert C.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.wcdebate. Austin. one had to decide between feeding a hungry baby or a hungy dog. that is. p. 2. But although these characteristics may provide the point of the distinction between men and other species. Senior Fellow in Philosophy at the Research School of Social Sciences in Australia. 1967. 3. NOMOS IX: EQUALITY. just as it would be unfair. that we should give to the interests of each the same serious consideration as claims to considerations necessary for some standard of well-being that we can recognize and endorse. but as normal for the species. and therefore claims. our breeding patterns. ad aggressive campaigns on the behalf of sensitivity when we become adults. part of culture rather than nature. Volume 9 Page 148 RATIONALITY IS BEST STANDARD 1. Not to possess human shape is a disqualifying condition. We say it is unfair to exploit the deficiencies of the imbecile who falls short of the norm.´ We are able to reflect and choose our food. This is what distinguishes our attitude to animals from our attitude to imbeciles. with its own standards of normality. As for the saccharine quality of those Christmas greetings and that biblical fantasy. We are not merely at the top of the food chain. The characteristics.. NOMOS IX: EQUALITY. RATIONALITY IS THE HUMAN NORM AND ALLOWS FOR EXCEPTIONS Stanley Benn. involves a certain distance. p. Senior Fellow in Philosophy at the Research School of Social Sciences in Australia.. the result of so many cuddly teddy bears and puppies when we were children. 62ff. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. or the distinguishing criteria of the class of morally considerable persons.but there is nothing odd about saying that we should respect their interests equally. therefore. 62ff. But compassion. If we do not think in this way about dogs. However faithful or intelligent a dog maybe. We.. and not just ordinarily dishonest. in an important sense. we can understand that. 1967. We are. 69. by reason of not possessing these characteristics. we can acknowledge the harshness of the world. they are not in fact the qualifying conditions for membership. We have what is uncritically called ³free will. as an expression of a certain sentimentality as well as a Christian allegory. it would be a monstrous sentimentality to attribute to him interests that could be weighed in an equal balance with those of human beings. 1999.if. Solomon. our habits. anyone who chose the dog would generally be reckoned morally defective. Our strange compassion for other species is a ³natural´ projection of our more immediate concerns but something learned and cultivated. too.. and yet not accept it at all. and this is precisely because a man does not become a member of a different species. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. as opposed to all the other creatures in nature. that distinguish the normal man from the normal dog make it intelligible for us to talk of other man having interests and capacities. to steal from a blind man. but because rationality is the human norm. As intelligent and sensitive human beings. It too. RATIONALITY DISTINGUISHES SPECIES AND IS ACCEPTED STANDARD Stanley Benn. is not opposed to but a consequence of reason. are rational. of precisely the same kind as we make on our own behalf. It would be odd to say that we ought to respect equally the dignity or personality of the imbecile and of the rational man. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. it is because we do not see the irrationality of the dog as a deficiency or a handicap. above the food chain.com . unable to recognize a fundamental inequality of claims. too. for instance. one could argue.
one might have an experience that is contrary to this position. AN EMPHASIS ON REASON BY SINGER DESTROYS THE NATURE OF COMPASSION Robert C. For example. perhaps returning to some of those personal sentiments or intuitions might be a good place to go. My argument. This requires what many theorists now call ³empathy´ or ³feeling with´ (which Hume and Adam Smith call ³sympathy´ and which might more accurately be called ³fellow-feeling´).com . Professor at Webster University. such differences do not provide a rational basis for differences in our ethical considerations or treatment. If we have a hard time grasping his view.According to Singer. We would not be absolutely immune to the "interests" of the kitten. as evidenced by any number of philosophers who simply ³talk a good game. my number three. p. An adequate sense of ethics requires not only reason but concern and curiosity. and they many not compete well with contrary interests toward humans. in a sentence. are not 100% novel. Nonetheless. or have different abilities than the person engaging in moral deliberation are not considerations that in themselves justify differential treatment. At the same time one noticed a small kitten.Just as Singer¶s substantive impartiality condemns granting additional consideration to the interests or preferences of one¶s racial or ethic group. Suppose one were all the things Singer attacks: a meat eater. In most cases. The notion that Singer will develop in ways that may well be strange and new to us. The danger. seemingly hungry and crying. a theory which justifies the distribution of goods under which men receive greater benefits and thus have more of their preferences satisfied than women do. a pet owner and so on. The point here is that many of us have some intuitions toward the interests of animals. the emotional sense that what happens to other matters. however. that some people have a different skin color. According to this principle.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.. most of us are familiar with anti-speciesist sentiments. even though our lives as a whole might suggest we were speciesists of the worst sort. simply because they are men. are of a different gender.wcdebate. in his emphasis on reason (and consequently. At the same time. so does it condemn granting additional consideration to the interests or preferences of humans over non-humans. WE HAVE NO NEED TO GO FURTHER.´ Thus. Singer rightly points out that most of us are living examples of speciesism in the same sense that radical Ku Klux Klan's people are racist. Solomon. Let me begin with the easiest one. GRANTING ANIMALS EQUALITY HARMS POLITICALLY DISADVANTAGED PEOPLE Lori Gruen. np. 3. I want to argue that what allows the circle to expand is not reason (in the technical sense of calculation on the basis of abstract principles) but rather knowledge and understanding in the sense of coming to appreciate the situations and the circumstances in which other people and creatures find themselves. we still often have some positive sentiments and intuitions toward the interests of animals. according to Singer. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. However. is that reason will also leave those feelings behind. 2. on the other hand. 1999. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. COMMENTS ON PETER SINGER'S ANALYSIS THAT LEADS TO SPECIESISM. is that Singer. unconcerned with the processes of producing meat for the table. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. adds universal principles to the promptings of our biologically inherited feelings. As Singer discusses the principle. is a theory that violates the principle of equal consideration of interests. 1999. Suppose one were drinking a large glass of milk and had drunk one's fill. Volume 9 Page 149 THE INCLUSION OF ANIMALS AS WORTHY OF EQUALITY IS BAD 1. and it requires care and concern. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. on the role of normative ethical theory) underestimates the power of compassion... WE ALREADY GIVE CONSIDERATION TO ANIMALS Bob Corbett. 75. all that is considered in deciding the morally correct course of action is the strength of the interests or preferences and the degree to which the interests and preferences of those affected will be thwarted or advanced. a need to know about the state of the world and plight of people outside of one¶s own limited domain. are from a different country. Reason. a zoo goer. Austin. and most people seem to. Many people would be enough moved by the "interests" of the kitten to look for some container to pour the remaining milk into so the kitten might drink it. p... Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University. 134-135. simply because they are humans. They may not be dominant. it prohibits granting any weight to particular features of a situation. and they might not be sentiments of equality. p. 1999.