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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
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org and seek our consent.
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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
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... 136 THE INTERSECTIONAL APPROACH IS BEST ....... 118 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WON¶T HELP SOLVE RACISM OR PROMOTE DEMOCRACY ............... 135 RACISM PERMEATES US CULTURE .................................................................... 89 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS UNJUSTIFIED .............................................................................. ..... 101 BIBLIOGRAPHY ........................................ 109 NADER¶S ANTI-CORPORATE AGENDA IS UNDESIRABLE ............ 116 GUINIER¶S VIEWS AREN¶T BAD: THE MEDIA LIES TO US ABOUT THEM .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 97 ISOLATION AND CONTAINMENT DON¶T WORK IN POLICY-MAKING .......................................................................................................................................................................................... 119 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WILL NOT BE EFFECTIVE ....................................................... 149 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www...................................... 137 HOOKS' CRITICISM IS INEFFECTIVE ...................................... 148 THE INCLUSION OF ANIMALS AS WORTHY OF EQUALITY IS BAD ........... 127 SKOCPOL'S UNDERSTANDING OF MATERNALISM SHOULD BE ADOPTED .................................................................................................... 146 REJECTING THE CRITERIA OF RATIONALITY IS BENEFICIAL ................................................................................................... 100 RALPH NADER . 126 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY OF THE STATE IS GOOD ........................................................................................... 107 GLOBAL FREE TRADE HAS HORRIBLE IMPACTS .................................... 111 BIBLIOGRAPHY ............ 92 BIBLIOGRAPHY ........................................................ 139 PETER SINGER ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 121 BIBLIOGRAPHY .................................................................................................................................. 117 LANI GUINIER¶S IDEAS ARE GOOD FOR MULTIRACIAL DEMOCRACY ............. 130 bell hooks..............................................................................................com ..................................................................................................... 108 NADER¶S PHILOSOPHY HURTS DEMOCRACY................................................. 147 RATIONALITY IS BEST STANDARD .................................................................................................. JR......................................................... 129 MATERNALISM IS BAD FOR WOMEN ..................................................................................... 140 BIBLIOGRAPHY ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 99 NYE¶S FOREIGN POLICY THINKING IS FLAWED ................................................... 106 EGALITARIAN CRITERIA OF JUSTICE IS BEST ......................................................................................................... 128 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY CANNOT CREATE CHANGE ....................................................................... 88 DEMOCRACY DOESN¶T DELEGITIMIZE CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE ............................................ 120 THEDA SKOCPOL .......................................................................................................................................................................................................... 131 BIBLIOGRAPHY ...... 110 LANI GUINIER ............................................................................West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook......................................................................................... 98 NYE¶S NOTION OF SOFT POWER IS WRONG .......................... 129 MATERNALISM IS FLAWED ...... 87 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS JUSTIFIED ...................................................................................................................... 91 JOSEPH NYE....................................................... 138 MULTIDIMENSIONALITY IS SUPERIOR TO INTERSECTIONALITY................................................................................................................................................................... Volume 9 Page 4 HOWARD ZINN....................................................... 96 SOFT POWER AND DEMOCRACY PROMOTION ARE INCREASINGLY KEY ............................................................................................................. 145 SPECIESISM IS THE NEW RACISM ............................wcdebate..................................................... 82 BIBLIOGRAPHY .............................................. 90 NONVIOLENT RESISTANCE FAILS ....................................................................
anti-Federalist. and this is especially true when dealing with a thinker of Madison¶s depth. Most importantly. Madison scholars agree today ± what Madison and the boys wanted to do was (in Rosen¶s words) ³to circumvent the people. As a result. Madison wondered how a more effective national government might take shape. Reports that Madison and Clinton invented ³The Funk Bomb´ to contribute to the national defense are unverified. Madison feared no effective national government could be formed. Though he was a co-author of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. and I have gladly availed myself of them on many occasions.S. he often split with co-author Alexander Hamilton on the issues of the day. when he served on the Virginia delegation in the Continental Congress. Volume 9 Page 5 JAMES MADISON Every academic field has its schemes of classification. was that of ancient lawgivers like Solon and Lycurgus. including George Clinton. THE LIFE OF MADISON It is with this problem that James Madison enters the picture. showing his freedom from dogmatism. though. James Madison. he suggests in Federalist 38. As a result. is often placed into one or another ideological box. It is said that he is a liberal or a republican. one of the youngest. James Madison. Without a predominant concern for the nation as a whole. Madison was an important figure in the early political life of the country. It is said that he is a liberal or a republican. and then discuss the ideas he brought to the table. which he identified in THE FEDERALIST PAPERS as factionalism.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. both of his vice presidents passed on in office. though: Madison was the smallest U. His idea on the separation of church and state. There is no denying the usefulness of these labels. and I have gladly availed myself of them on many occasions. When the Articles of Confederation began to fail. But taxonomies seldom do justice to individuals. and the structure of representative government remain influential. or Democratic-Republican) of the time.wcdebate. as opposed to a myopic concern for individual states and localities. Not easily categorizable. He stepped onto the political scene in 1780. standing 5" 4" and weighing about 100 pounds.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. a nationalist or an advocate of states¶ rights. No. and scholarship on the American founding is no different. The problem as he saw it was too great a regional identification. a follower of the "court" party or of its "country" rival. a nationalist or an advocate of states¶ rights. As COMMENTARY MAGAZINE¶s Gary Rosen put it: Every academic field has its schemes of classification. We¶ll begin by examining the manner in which Madison busted onto the nation scene in 1780. Seriously. a follower of the "court" party or of its "country" rival. and scholarship on the American founding is no different. is often placed into one or another ideological box. who died in office in 1812. in fact." The example to follow.com . like the other leading figures of his generation. There is no denying the usefulness of these labels. and this is especially true when dealing with a thinker of Madison¶s depth. Interestingly enough. Madison was original thinker given to philosophy. reasons of enlightened men crafting a document in the best interests of all. like the other leading figures of his generation. Madison was much younger than many of the other founders. Indeed. president. the avoidance of oppression. A Constitutional Convention was necessary ± but not for the reasons you might suspect. But taxonomies seldom do justice to individuals.James Madison was a unique member of the group known as the Founding Fathers. men of "preeminent wisdom and approved integrity" who nonetheless were compelled to act outside the bounds of regular authority. 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. Madison didn¶t adhere devoutly to the party line of any of the three major factions (Federalist. even if just temporarily.
Either they will become the next majority. The safeguards are based on what Madison termed ³the principle of reciprocity. Hence." He did so through placing both substantive and procedural limits on democratic majority rule of the country. Madison is famous for his advocacy of a federal system with checks and balances to provide stability and satisfy most all interest groups. Volume 9 Page 6 ³Paradoxical as it may sound. or will merely have the power to make life miserable for the people who made their lives miserable over the past however many years. As a skillful politician. 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. the majority is inherently self-interested. Let¶s just say ³it worked´ and move on. MADISON ON THE POLITICAL SYSTEM As an author of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. You often see a good soldier get rewarded with a plum position when his or her party takes power. the self-interested majority worries that the minority may attract defectors from the majority and become the next governing majority itself. In organizing a republican democracy. getting ahead of myself ± but I couldn¶t help it. This includes the existence of the electoral college and the bicameral legislature system. (Sorry. 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. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. he had ideas about what the ideal state would look like. Let¶s not belabor the point. after all.com . ³Tyranny of the Majority. People will vote to actualize their own wants. even though that person is unqualified and unworthy of the job. where the House of Representatives is thought to represent the masses and the Senate the landed elite. one must take care to build in safeguards against this. What might that mean? Well. Thus. 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. MADISON ON THE TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY Madison worried about the overarching power of a powerful mass of people. the majority will look to the long-term. The idea is that they might use their power to stifle the rights of others. he was able to get what he wanted for that state.´ But here¶s where Madison¶s principle of reciprocity comes in: the majority might be self-interested. 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. Madison is famous for having sought to avoid "the tyranny of the majority. Madison seems to have concluded that America would get a sound. needs and desires.) 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. We¶ll examine the criticisms of Madison below.wcdebate. This does happen in politics all the time. like John Ashcroft. and hence have the power to govern.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. As a philosophically inclined individual. Majority group members will worry that the minority may attract defectors from the majority group. This might cause problems where the majority runs roughshod over the rights of the minority ± hence. but they aren¶t blind. especially if that mass had coincident interests.
Power is to be kept as separated as possible among interest groups and even elected officials. he kept his religious beliefs largely private. Knowing that most Americans didn¶t support granting the delegates to the Constitutional Convention the power to make a new government. minority preference laws) that may either alienate their political support base ± or attract minority members." Even Jefferson. Even Madison¶s own words at the time provide a pretty damning indictment. as Madison consistently rejected tax support for religious institutions. Will its effects be greater on them considered in an aggregate view? Quite the reverse. who warned of the deadly nature of a ³priest-ridden culture. Volume 9 Page 7 So winning candidates don¶t have to ONLY pay attention to the majority." Madison wrote. with Jefferson considering Madison an aristocrat) and men like Patrick Henry and his supporters on the other. 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. Indeed. he wrote "that neither moral nor religious motives can be relied on as an adequate control. 1787.´ wasn¶t as pessimistic about the social utility of the church. In fact. Speaking of potential for abuse. They¶ll be voting on tons of issues (road building bills." In the most famous of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. this is part of the logic of the federal system. organic food labeling laws. He consistently repeated these views in speeches of the time. Again. he had this to say: Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 1787. Their charges have serious merit. then the potential for abuse is minimized. This viewpoint manifested itself in 1784-85. The church. If power is temporary and fluid. with Jefferson and Madison on one side (though they split on many other issues." The debate raged on. 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. 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. This helps to explain his support for what we today call the separation of church and state. Madison reasoned. including one given at the Federal Convention on June 6. who betrayed his core constituency with Republican style policies to the tune of sweet re-election. In a memorandum entitled "Vices of the Political System" (1787) he express skepticism that religion could prevent oppression under a system of republican governance. While his father was an Episcopalian. did best when it was unencumbered from the mandates of a state apparatus. he believed that separating the two institutions served religion best as well. He wrote in a pamphlet called MEMORIAL AND REMONSTRANCE a defense of these decisions. MADISON ON RELIGION Madison had serious doubts about the role religion played in public life. where he argued that there was "little to be expected" from religion in a positive way. The struggle continues to this day. a prominent issue in public life then as now was the role of religion. Number 10. Could it "be a sufficient restraint? It is not pretended to be such on men individually considered.wcdebate. written in June 1785. is celebrated by Madison¶s acolytes as "the most powerful defense of religious liberty ever written in America. published November 22.com . he warned that it might become "a motive to persecution and oppression.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. The politician always has to be on the lookout ± just ask Bill Clinton. The document. and Madison had a key role to play in it all.
they are known to have a double effect. which Jefferson (and every sane person) thought were unconstitutional. and attacked both Madison and Hamilton for it. which time bestows on everything. would be sufficiently inculcated by the voice of an enlightened reason. The reason of man. . in Madison¶s view. it is no less true that the strength of opinion in each individual. Madison replies? In order to promote stability of government. Jefferson believed that the federal government ought only have the powers expressly granted by the people. All the most enlightened and respectable citizens will be its advocates. and that bypassing that consent was unjust." Jefferson would fight Madison on many policies over which they differed based on these principles. IN CONCLUSION Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Volume 9 Page 8 We ought to consider what [is] right & necessary in itself for the attainment of a proper Government. including the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798. His final shot at Jefferson. which fortify opinion. the people Jefferson feared and mistrusted. and little support in opposition to them can be gained to it from the unreflecting multitude. frequent appeals would in great measure deprive the government of that veneration. when left alone. this influential class of citizens will be turned against the plan. A reverence for the laws. not particularly wealthy) might gang up and plunder the rich. In a nation of philosophers. Jefferson asked his colleague "Whether one generation of men has a right to bind another?" He concluded. the most rational government will not find it a superfluous advantage. Perhaps the defining quotation from this period and this viewpoint comes from John Jay. while this doctrine effectively gave the governing bodies power to do whatever they thought was best. the third author of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS: ³the people who own the country ought to govern it. depend much on the number which he supposes to have entertained the same opinion. having witnessed the first events of the French Revolution. and its practical influence on his conduct. is contained in FEDERALIST PAPER NUMBER 49: As every appeal to the people would carry an implication of some defect in the government. Madison wanted to deliver power into the hands of a ³better sort´ of people ± the rich. Should we fall short of the necessary and proper point. which John Marshall¶s Supreme Court seemed destined to enforce. this consideration ought to be disregarded. If it be true that all governments rest on opinion. the people possessed a "natural right" to reject the acts.´ Jefferson was a staunch critic of this viewpoint. and without which perhaps the wisest and freest governments would not possess the requisite stability.wcdebate. the mass of American people. When the examples. and the summation of his argument.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. A plan adjusted to this idea will recommend itself. Jefferson¶s first principles included the idea that government was only just with the consent of the governed. And in every other nation. Madison reasoned. This "unreflecting multitude´ was. in proportion to the number with which it is associated. . In order to stay away from factionalism and prevent the people from losing faith in government. When Madison said ³tyranny of the majority. which should be declared "void and of no force. and acquires firmness and confidence. Jefferson said that if the federal government was to violate its own laws. 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.com .´ he meant that the majority of Americans (still rural farmers. are antient as well as numerous. . the people must not be allowed or required to challenge every decision made by the ³better class of men´ ruling them. to have the prejudices of the community on its side. that "no such obligation can be so transmitted. the powerful. But a nation of philosophers is as little to be expected as the philosophical race of kings wished for by Plato. like man himself is timid and cautious. the government must continue to go about its business as usual.´ Jefferson also battled with Madison and Hamilton over the ³implied powers´ doctrine.
As every appeal to the people would carry an implication of some defect in the government. The reason of man. When the examples. it is no less true that the strength of opinion in each individual. which time bestows on everything. the most based in a sense of ethics. like man himself is timid and cautious.´ The youngest of the founding fathers. In a nation of philosophers. to have the prejudices of the community on its side. A reverence for the laws. A plan adjusted to this idea will recommend itself. they¶re worth checking out. depend much on the number which he supposes to have entertained the same opinion. and without which perhaps the wisest and freest governments would not possess the requisite stability. But a nation of philosophers is as little to be expected as the philosophical race of kings wished for by Plato.wcdebate. All the most enlightened and respectable citizens will be its advocates. and its practical influence on his conduct. they are known to have a double effect. are antient as well as numerous. . this consideration ought to be disregarded. Should we fall short of the necessary and proper point. he had more influence than most any of them ± even Jefferson. And in every other nation. when left alone. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and the most passionately argued. would be sufficiently inculcated by the voice of an enlightened reason. whose populist ideas lost out in the long run to Madison¶s aristocratic notions.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. frequent appeals would in great measure deprive the government of that veneration. . His FEDERALIST PAPERS are the most philosophical.com . the most rational government will not find it a superfluous advantage. If it be true that all governments rest on opinion. Even if you disagree with their ultimate conclusions.We ought to consider what [is] right & necessary in itself for the attainment of a proper Government. this influential class of citizens will be turned against the plan. 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. Volume 9 Page 9 James Madison should be known for a lot more than being a short guy who had a wife named ³Dolley. . which fortify opinion. and acquires firmness and confidence.
Mattern.loc. 1941-61.loc.. John. Smith. James. Richard K. Meyers..org/dailys/11-15-00. Noam. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute.html. Marvin. ed. James Morton. Hutson. Matthews. COMMENTARY MAGAZINE.wcdebate. 1981. 10. March 16. N. Brant. Library of Congress.H.loc. 1995. Lance. ³Was James Madison an Original Thinker?´ LIBRARY OF CONGRESS JAMES MADISON COMMEMORATION SYMPOSIUM.html and http://www.html and http://www. Z MAGAZINE. March 16. David. Lancej. http://www.gov/loc/madison/hutson-paper. 2001. Hanover. ed. 2001. http://federalistpapers.loc. THE SACRED FIRE OF LIBERTY: JAMES MADISON AND THE CREATION OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC. 2001.com/federalist10.loc. Irving. 1912. James Madison's "Advice to My Country" (Charlottesville. N. 1776-1826: New York. under the name Publius. 2000. Volume 9 Page 10 BIBLIOGRAPHY Banning. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. http://www. March 16.gov/loc/madison/rosen-paper. Va. 2002. IF MEN WERE ANGELS: JAMES MADISON AND THE HEARTLESS EMPIRE OF REASON: Lawrence.gov/loc/madison/symposium. ³James Madison: Federalist." LIBRARY OF CONGRESS JAMES MADISON COMMEMORATION SYMPOSIUM. Rosen.. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.html and http://www.loc. June 1997.html. THE REPUBLIC OF LETTERS: THE CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN JEFFERSON AND MADISON. Rewards. All of Madison¶s FEDERALIST PAPERS are available at http://federalistpapers. James.´ LIBRARY OF CONGRESS JAMES MADISON COMMEMORATION SYMPOSIUM. THE MIND OF THE FOUNDER: SOURCES OF THE POLITICAL THOUGHT OF JAMES MADISON. "James Madison and the Social Utility of Religion: Risks vs.cato.gov/loc/madison/symposium. http://www. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY. accessed April 22. Beard.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.html and http://www.com. http://www..Y..gov/loc/madison/symposium. 1787. Samples. Charles historian.html. THE LIFE OF JAMES MADISON: Indianapolis. 1780-l792: Ithaca. FEDERALIST PAPER No.html. 1995. Banning.gov/loc/madison/hutson-paper..html.com .loc. November 22. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. November 15. Madison. Kans. Gary. 1997). 1995. University of Kentucky.gov/loc/madison/banning-paper. Chomsky.
to set a due value on any plan which. By a faction. have. Sen. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY. and of public and personal liberty. The valuable improvements made by the American constitutions on the popular models. http://www. adversed to the rights of other citizens. the evidence. to contend that they have as effectually obviated the danger on this side. equally the friends of public and private faith. effects of the unsteadiness and injustice with which a factious spirit has tainted our public administrations. been the mortal diseases under which popular governments have everywhere perished. I give Ms.html. 2002. However anxiously we may wish that these complaints had no foundation. Hillary Rodham Clinton.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. not according to the rules of justice and the rights of the minor party. who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion. The friend of popular governments never finds himself so much alarmed for their character and fate. http://federalistpapers. and that measures are too often decided. and confusion introduced into the public councils. whether amounting to a majority or a minority of the whole. 10. 2000. which are echoed from one end of the continent to the other. provides a proper cure for it.org/dailys/11-15-00. What about the Electoral College? Madison thought it embodied the "federal will" of the nation. The instability. As Madison knew. I understand a number of citizens.com . is the latest convert to this cause. accessed April 22. A FEDERAL REPUBLIC CONTROLS FACTIONALISM AND VIOLENCE James Madison. 2002. Washington's newest celebrity. and alarm for private rights. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY. Clinton opposes the Electoral College only because Al Gore might lose the presidency despite getting a plurality of the popular vote. injustice. November 22. Her opposition to the Electoral College is entirely in step with her underlying philosophy of government: centralizing liberalism. Clinton more credit than that. indeed. in truth. November 15. proponents of pure democracy will call for the abolition of the Electoral College. 1787. cannot certainly be too much admired. if not wholly. 2002. 3. FEDERALIST PAPER No. particularly. but by the superior force of an interested and overbearing majority. It will be found.html. as when he contemplates their propensity to this dangerous vice. or of interest. none deserves to be more accurately developed than its tendency to break and control the violence of faction. of known facts will not permit us to deny that they are in some degree true. Volume 9 Page 11 MADISON¶S IDEA OF A FEDERAL REPUBLIC MAKES FOR GOOD GOVERNANCE 1. James Madison. that the public good is disregarded in the conflicts of rival parties.html. Some will say Ms. as was wished and expected. np. Among the numerous advantages promised by a well constructed Union. THE ³FEDERAL WILL´ IS MANIFESTED BY THE AMERICAN ELECTORAL COLLEGE John Samples. or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community.wcdebate.cato. These must be chiefly. that some of the distresses under which we labor have been erroneously charged on the operation of our governments.org/dailys/11-15-00. np. therefore. this amalgamation gave small and medium-sized states more leverage in presidential elections than they would have in a popular vote. 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). but it will be found. that other causes will not alone account for many of our heaviest misfortunes. without violating the principles to which he is attached. MADISON¶S IDEA OF A FEDERAL REPUBLIC IS THE BEST GOVERNMENTAL POLICY John Samples. http://www. at the same time. Complaints are everywhere heard from our most considerate and virtuous citizens. that our governments are too unstable. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute. on a candid review of our situation. However the election turns out. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. He found that fair given the influence of large states in other areas. but it would be an unwarrantable partiality. p. accessed April 22. as they continue to be the favorite and fruitful topics from which the adversaries to liberty derive their most specious declamations.com/federalist10. 2. p. November 15. accessed April 22. But that philosophy contravenes the spirit of our Constitution as expressed by its primary author.cato. both ancient and modern. 2000. and. We should stick with Madison's idea of a federal republic and preserve the Electoral College. for that prevailing and increasing distrust of public engagements. He will not fail.
a communication and concert result from the form of government itself. From this view of the subject it may be concluded that a pure democracy. in controlling the effects of faction. In the extent and proper structure of the Union. November 22. 2002. November 15." 2. in almost every case. November 22. BECAUSE THE ENLIGHTENED WON¶T ALWAYS RULE. we behold a republican remedy for the diseases most incident to republican government. The inference to which we are brought is. November 22. have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property.cato. http://federalistpapers. have erroneously supposed that by reducing mankind to a perfect equality in their political rights. 2002. 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. 2000.com/federalist10. It is in vain to say that enlightened statesmen will be able to adjust these clashing interests. Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. MADISONIAN FEDERALISM SOLVES FOR BETTER DEMOCRACY John Samples. A common passion or interest will. the extent of the Union gives it the most palpable advantage. and they hoped strong states would limit an expansive central government.html. http://www.html. 1787. -. is enjoyed by a large over a small republic.wcdebate. 2002. and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths. Hence it is that such democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention. therefore.org/dailys/11-15-00. and that relief is only to be sought in the means of controlling its EFFECTS. np. 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.is enjoyed by the Union over the States composing it. 3. accessed April 22. be felt by a majority of the whole. 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. 1787. consist in the greater obstacles opposed to the concert and accomplishment of the secret wishes of an unjust and interested majority? Here. Volume 9 Page 12 FEDERALISM IS KEY TO STABLE AND PROSPEROUS GOVERNMENT 1. again. FEDERALISM IS BEST James Madison. who have patronized this species of government. and their passions. their opinions. it clearly appears.com/federalist10. who assemble and administer the government in person. and there is nothing to check the inducements to sacrifice the weaker party or an obnoxious individual. be perfectly equalized and assimilated in their possessions. http://federalistpapers. FEDERALIST PAPER No. p. p. 10. 4. that the CAUSES of faction cannot be removed. np. 1787. ought to be our zeal in cherishing the spirit and supporting the character of Federalists. If we abolish the Electoral College. PURE DEMOCRACY WOULD BE DIVISIVE AND FRACTIOUS: FEDERALISM IS BETTER James Madison. by which I mean a society consisting of a small number of citizens. 10. in fine. p.html. can such an adjustment be made at all without taking into view indirect and remote considerations.com . Theoretic politicians. Nor. at the same time. 10. increase this security. accessed April 22. np. Madison's point about federalism is also well taken. that the same advantage which a republic has over a democracy. director of the Center for Representative Government at the Cato Institute. CATO DAILY COMMENTARY. http://federalistpapers. and render them all subservient to the public good. can admit of no cure for the mischiefs of faction. accessed April 22.com/federalist10. p. FEDERALIST PAPER No. they would. we will make it harder for the states to provide this essential defense of liberty. And we will do so just as bold policy successes in the states have shown the value of these "laboratories of democracy. Does it. Does it consist in the greater security afforded by a greater variety of parties. The Founders feared the arbitrary exercise of political power. in many cases. Hence. 2002. And according to the degree of pleasure and pride we feel in being republicans. np. A FEDERAL REPUBLIC IS MUCH BETTER THAN A DEMOCRACY James Madison. accessed April 22.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.html.
and excess" of the representatives of the people by the ability and virtue of men" of great and established property -. NOT DEMOCRACY Charles Beard." Uniformity of interests throughout the state. -. They were anxious above everything else to safeguard the rights of private property against any leveling tendencies on the part of the propertyless masses." While these extreme doctrines were somewhat counterbalanced by the democratic principles of Mr. 1912. hence. 31. nevertheless. 31. to give notice of the future danger. in speaking on the problem of apportioning representatives. must be rendered by their number and local situation unable to concert and carry into effect schemes of oppression". historian. 1912. would prove that property was the main object of society. they will become the tools of opulence and ambition. Volume 9 Page 13 MADISONIAN FEDERALISM IS JUST AN EXCUSE TO CURB REAL DEMOCRACY 1. the mind or sense of the people at large. In the tenth number of The Federalist. in a certain quarter. what is more probable. changeableness. historian.aristocracy. from which the rights of property originated. in which case there will be equal danger on another side. p. but without any other sort of property.in which case the rights of property and the public liberty will not be secure in their hands. but second. he contended. a great majority of the people will not only be without land. MADISON WANTED ARISTOCRACY. No agrarian attempts have yet been made in this country. These may in time outnumber those who are placed above the feelings of indigence. and at the same time to preserve the spirit and form of popular government. and in his opinion. In advocating a long term in order to give independence and firmness to the Senate." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." 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. historian. certainly it ought to be one measure of the influence due to those who were to be affected by the government. Madison urged: "In future times. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION.com . from the protection of different and unequal faculties of acquiring property the possession of different degrees and kinds of property immediately resulted." And again. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. NOT PEOPLE Charles Beard." 3. the force. was the great object to which their inquiries had been directed. MADISON¶S VIEW PROTECTED PROPERTY. 31. 1912. from the influence of these on the sentiments and views of the respective proprietors ensued a division of society into different interests and parties. Mr. men who from pride will support consistency and permanency.. who urged that "the government ought to possess." and Mr. 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. but symptoms of a levelling spirit. then was the main object of government.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Governor Morris.wcdebate.Such an aristocratic body will keep down the turbulence of democracy. 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. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION.. p. According to the equal laws of suffrage. the power will slide into the hands of the former. not only first. MADISON ADMITTED FAVORING INEQUALITY Charles Beard. was impossible on account of the diversity in the faculties of men. King also agreed that "property was the primary object of society. in support of the argument for a property qualification on voters.or. 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.If property." Mr. under the influence of their common situation. the protection of these faculties was the first object of government. 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. p. 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. as we have understood have sufficiently appeared. having such coexistent passion or interest. Governor Morris wanted to check the "precipitancy. he added. "the majority. Wilson.. -. in concluding this splendid piece of logic.. correctly stated the sound historical fact when he declared: "Life and liberty were generally said to be of more value than property. These will either combine. An accurate view of the matter. 2.
'' To achieve this goal. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. a personal right which must be privileged above all others. by the late 19th century the founding doctrines took on a new and much more oppressive form. that these principles lost their force as the national territory was conquered and settled.'' men who would ``sympathize sufficiently'' with property rights and ``be safe depositories of power over them. Furthermore. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. and the constitutional system generally.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. the native population driven out or exterminated. 8. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. typically material property. the phrase ``rights of property'' means the right to property.pre-capitalist.'' delivering power to a ``better sort'' of people and excluding ``those who were not rich. he urged. political power must rest in the hands of ``the wealth of the nation. A CONSENSUS OF MADISONIAN SCHOLARS AGREES HE WAS AN ELITIST Noam Chomsky. or prominent from exercising political power. Among Madisonian scholars.'' a concept that doubtless would have shocked Madison and others with intellectual roots in the Enlightenment and classical liberalism -.'' he meant humans. there is a consensus that ``The Constitution was intrinsically an aristocratic document designed to check the democratic tendencies of the period. as some historians do. In a current official document. associated group. sought to balance the rights of persons against the rights of property. ```Person' is broadly defined to include any individual. his biographer observes. Z MAGAZINE.'' ``one of [the] favorite maxims'' of Madison's influential colleague John Jay. trust. June 1997. partnership. Madison pointed out that in England. branch.'' These conclusions are often qualified by the observation that Madison. 3. we can appreciate the force of the doctrine that ``the people who own the country ought to govern it. corporation or other organization (whether or not organized under the laws of any State). if elections ``were open to all classes of people. Z MAGAZINE. p.'' which are property rights. June 1997. estate. and the rise of corporate forms of economic enterprise. But the formulation is misleading. p. CAPITALISM HAS SIGNIFICANTLY ALTERED THE WAY WE SHOULD SEE MADISON Noam Chomsky. It is the responsibility of government.com . 2. Property has no rights. and ``secure the permanent interests of the country. 8. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. p. In the debates on the Constitution. and is crucially different from others in that one person's possession of such rights deprives another of them. June 1997. When Madison spoke of ``rights of persons. But the growth of the industrial economy. or any government entity. When the facts are stated clearly. An agrarian law would soon take place. offered only limited public participation in the political arena. led to a completely new meaning of the term. the leading Framer of the constitutional system was an astute and lucid political thinker.wcdebate. whose views largely prevailed. and anti-capitalist in spirit. Whatever one's assessment of those years. Madison declared. Volume 9 Page 14 MADISON WAS AN ELITIST WHOSE THEORIES FAVORED ONLY RICH LANDOWNERS 1. The system that he and his associates were designing must prevent such injustice. In both principle and practice. well born. James Madison. ``to protect the minority of the opulent against the majority. association.'' while the rest are marginalized and fragmented. MADISON WANTED TO PROTECT THE RICH MINORITY AGAINST THE MAJORITY Noam Chomsky. the property of landed proprietors would be insecure. Z MAGAZINE.'' giving land to the landless. One may argue. 8.
an aristocratic. were extremely important during the early days of the United States. After Adams was elected President. then his ideas. 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. But of all the political ideas and economic philosophy that Hamilton offered to the world. While Jefferson was not necessarily a states¶ rights proponent in the way we understand these terms today. centralized union that would be a representative republic. This model would have devices that would protect class and property interests. Volume 9 Page 15 ALEXANDER HAMILTON Alexander Hamilton is probably best known as one of the authors of THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. When the Constitutional Convention was convened. He served as a Lieutenant Colonel under George Washington for four years during the Revolutionary War. an anti-federalist who would scrap mightily over those issues with Hamilton throughout their lives. After Washington died. He would hold to this model in large measure for all his life. This is one of many issues that he and Thomas Jefferson would clash on. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. opinions that broke strongly from one notable politician of the era ± Thomas Jefferson. Due to Hamilton¶s inside connections. In those papers. talked to cabinet members in attempts to undermine Adams¶s policy. He was the only delegate from New York to support the ratification of the constitution ± but he did so vociferously. Shortly before the presidential election of 1800. rebuke and scandal.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. THE LIFE OF HAMILTON Hamilton started his career with military action during the revolt against British colonialism. coercive. making one legendary speech where he attacked the states¶ rights ideas of William Paterson. was vocally against states¶ rights.com . he also offered a life of tragedy. which Hamilton published (along with John Jay and James Madison) under the name Publius. Much of this is forgotten today. he was an influential figure in the early days of this country who is too often overlooked today. Let¶s start the process of remembrance with an exploration of his life. He saw centralization of authority as necessary to protect essential functions. the leadership of the Federalist Party split between Hamilton and John Adams. famously serving as a delegate at the Constitutional Convention and encouraging the advance of federal power. Hamilton was politically active throughout his life. blackening Hamtilon¶s eye and ratcheting up tension between Hamilton and Adams ± not to mention Hamilton and Burr. Either way. an influential series of pamphlets arguing for a federal constitution to replace the Articles of Confederation. Hamilton cited the British government as the best model for the new government -. One of those actions was to inflame Hamilton¶s feud with Aaron Burr as well. While Hamilton intended to closely control distribution of his missive. making it available to the general public. Hamilton signed the new American Constitution for his state. and generally made himself a pain. 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. the letter contained some confidential cabinet information. his political rival Aaron Burr secured a copy for himself. HIS IDEAS Hamilton. or the fact that he was killed by political rival Aaron Burr in a duel. Burr then PUBLISHED a copy of it. THE FEDERALIST PAPERS. Hamilton constantly rebuked him in public. Either that. Hamilton wrote a scathing letter attacking Adams.wcdebate. as an aristocrat.
These doctrines meant that even if a role for the federal government was not explicitly stated. Madison (with strict constructionist logic) claimed that the national bank was unconstitutional since the constitution did not explicitly approve such an institution. or not immoral.wcdebate. (no. wherever a general power to do a thing is given. Hamilton¶s basic argument is a qualified version of one used by Madison himself in the Federalist. who always mistrusted the financier set (and the federal government). Today." one could think of him as one of the first ³big government liberals. Jefferson was considered a Democratic-Republican. 44) that "wherever the end is required. His REPORT ON MANUFACTURERS (1791) was the first major departure from Adam Smith¶s WEALTH OF NATIONS (1776). every particular power necessary for doing it is included. 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. In fact. In 1781 he promoted the idea that a nonexcessive public debt would be a good thing. America probably would not have successfully industrialized at all if not for Hamiltonian policies of protective tariffs. and fairly applicable to the attainment of the ends of such power. HAMILTON¶S ECONOMIC IDEAS His economic ideas were no less radical.´ Because Hamilton¶s economic ideas were so influential. opposed the project and intended to veto the bill. duties and other legislation designed to shelter fledgling industries. "implied powers." Ironically.´ as is often claimed. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Hamilton was the Federalist¶s Federalist. was a vocal opponent of the national bank. Hamilton¶s staunch ally. impressive or important. the means are authorized. One of Hamilton¶s lasting legacies is the creation of a national bank. This was also one of the most controversial agendas he advanced. we would call this viewpoint ³protectionism. The Opinion sees Hamilton flesh out his view of the implied powers of the constitution.´ which argues that the federal government only gets to do what the constitution EXPLICITLY says it gets to do. Hamilton¶s logic: "[the government has] a right to employ all the means requisite." and the "general welfare. and which are not precluded by restrictions & exceptions specified in the constitution. Hamilton¶s interpretation opens up the federal government¶s role considerably. 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. They probably would not have agreed to the constitution if they had known some of the things he had in mind. he suggested the direct collection of federal taxes by federal agents ± a fairly radical stance in such an anti-tax climate.´ These ideas were later codified in the decisions of Supreme Court Justice John Marshall. Even then-President George Washington. Because he advocated the constitutional doctrines of liberal construction. the legacy of Britain. Volume 9 Page 16 As labels of the day went. allowing it to do things that many of the anti-Federalists opposed.´ This kind of liberal constructionism is deeply at odds with what is called ³strict constructionism. As early as 1776. The document argued for a system of protective duties designed to promote the interests of American businessmen and manufacturers. This is perhaps the most concrete consequence of Hamilton¶s idea of implied powers. they became relatively widespread in the early days of the United States. he claims. 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.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. or not contrary to the essential ends of political society." Washington passed the Bank Bill in February of 1791.com . He wanted to protect the working classes against what he saw as the onset of aristocracy and monarchy. shortened to Republican. Jefferson.
" Hamilton¶s ideas seemed to Jefferson to be a lot closer to King George III than to any American thinker. and consequently the more virulent. then his closest aide. where Hamilton repeatedly ripped Burr in public speeches. saying this behavior ³nourishes in our citizens vice & idleness instead of industry & morality. 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. "are reasoning rather than reasonable animals. Twenty-five men were arrested and their newspapers forced to shut down as a result of this legislation ± including Benjamin Franklin's grandson. compared to Jefferson¶s continued desire to trust the public. has been awarded him by a suffrage now universal. as much due to his belief in free speech as to his desire to stick his thumb in Hamilton¶s eye. scandalous and malicious writing. This is best evidenced by his warm support for the final form of the Alien and Sedition Laws of 1798. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. That culminated in the elections season of 1804." Again. At least he admitted it and didn't overtly destabilize the government.´ saying that "a clear sacrifice of great positive advantages. accusing him of engaging in a monarchical conspiracy. so get over it. There are a lot of Hamiltonians still around in American politics. and the moral qualities of integrity and honor in a captivating degree.) Hamilton constantly disputed Jefferson¶s claim that the general public should control government. he pardoned all of those convicted. confronting Washington with a list of 21 objections to Hamilton¶s proposed policies. more centralized government. DENOUMENT We know about the scandal that ended up killing Hamilton. and everyone else knew it too. disputed the geographical distribution of the benefits (Jefferson thought farmers would get screwed. Perhaps his sternest rebuke to Hamilton came based on Jefferson¶s moral objections investment speculation. will only be more concentrated in each part. punishable by fine and imprisonment. editor of the Philadelphia DemocratRepublican Aurora. Volume 9 Page 17 Jefferson hated these economic ideas." Such publications were made high misdemeanors. More on that in our final section. Allegedly. the translation from Old Uptight American: Hamilton preferred a more robust.com . Jefferson decried Hamilton¶s desire to increase the public debt. my friends and I are rich. HAMILTON¶S OPPRESSIVE IDEAS Hamilton¶s notion of a strong national government did err on the side of oppression at times. Hamilton¶s response: "It is a strange perversion of ideas. His morals -." For those of you that don¶t speak Old Uptight American.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.wcdebate. that¶s a price I¶m willing to pay. which the urban elite would benefit). administering no relief to our real disease. If his theory of government deviated from the republican standard he had the candour to avow it. Perhaps the most balanced view came from Madison. his customary colleague. Aaron Burr had been a political rival of Hamilton¶s since at least 1777." He referred (in his last letter on politics) to democracy as a ³disease. These acts made illegal the publication of "any false. here¶s a translation: yeah. Madison¶s final assessment of Hamilton was written in 1831: "That he possessed intellectual powers of the first order. as should be clear. and many other things. the poison of which. Even sometime allies recognized the elitist tendency in Hamilton. without any counterbalancing good. which is democracy. and as novel as it is extraordinary. at least he had SOME integrity and honor about him. (When Jefferson was elected. And we¶re just going to get richer as the country grows. Benjamin Franklin Bache. when Burr sent a contemptuous letter to Washington about Hamilton." This shows his opinion of the average American. If some farmers lose out on their land and enterprises so that my friends and I can run the country.well." he said. that men should be deemed corrupt & criminal for becoming proprietors in the funds of their Country. and the greater merit of co-operating faithfully in maturing and supporting a system which was not his choice. I know he was smart. by a subdivision. "Men. These laws were mostly used to silence dissent.
But the Burr scandal wasn¶t the only hot water Hamilton found himself embroiled in. James Reynolds. al.but he said it was his own money. you get the impression that they were these morally upstanding men of a bygone era where honor was protected at all costs.. At that point. was bragging that Hamilton had given him money out of the treasury to play the stock market. in Sports Center parlance. not the government's. CONCLUSION When you learn about the so-called ³Founding Fathers´ in school. And. A journalist reported to the country that Hamilton "could detail . ³Mr. Reynolds said that Hamilton could continue the affair so long as the money kept coming. both saw their records tarnished by stunning sex scandals. when Hamilton headed up the Treasury Department. One could make a strong case for Hamilton as the Bill Clinton of his day: both were extremely intelligent. and by the press). a shady character currently in jail. Hamilton¶s note to his wife. . it just ain¶t so ± and it¶s somewhat comforting that the politicians of days past were just as sleazy. it was on.James Monroe. and agreed to keep it quiet. but a BRIBE. my love for you and my precious children would have been alone a decisive motive. that though he held "despicable" opinions of Burr. while Clinton was the child of a single mother. As I hope this essay makes clear. and Frederick Muhlenberg ± thought they had found evidence that Hamilton was misappropriating government funds. Hamilton admitted he had given James Reynolds money -. 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). when a pamphlet was published with the allegations. That¶s when it got weird. natural politicians. Hamilton actually followed through with physical violence against a political rival. Reynolds was a clever pimp who was now harboring some very destructive information on one of the highest officials in the country. and while Clinton merely threatened to bash William Safire in the nose.Adieu best of wives and best of Women. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." No word on whether he penned a similar missive to James Reynolds¶ wife.money. he did not intend to fire at Burr. Maria. Hamilton was technically born illegitimate. a still more despicable opinion" of Burr. Hamilton was having an affair Hamilton with Reynolds' wife. That money had changed hands.´ Amazingly. Three congressmen -. . As historian Lisa Marie de Carolis noted. It gets better. too. greedy. written directly before the duel with Burr. Volume 9 Page 18 But he crossed the line when he said (at an event attended by a Burr supporter. without sacrifices which would have rendered me unworthy of your esteem. They apparently did. is the final record from his life: "If it had been possible for me to have avoided the interview. Monroe et. But it was not possible. Abraham Venable. though he showed up to the duel and took a pistol. When Reynolds found out he demanded ³satisfaction´ . It wasn¶t even the juiciest. That happened in 1792. motivated. until July 1797.wcdebate.com . Burr challenged Hamilton to a duel and killed him. . the three congressmen were satisfied by Hamilton¶s explanation. he had more dirt on him that he wouldn¶t dish just yet.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and sexually predatory as the ones we see today. the public could be kept in the dark no longer. went to Hamilton's office to confront him. Reynolds had evidence.. Some Hamilton apologists insist that.
Cooke. historian. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton. ed. New York. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. Department of Alfa-informatica. New York and London: Columbia University Press. ALEXANDER HAMILTON: PORTRAIT IN PARADOX. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. Chomsky. New York: The Free Press.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. SELECTED WRITINGS AND SPEECHES OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON. Jacob E. Lanham/New York/London: University Press of America. Chomsky. New York: Harper & Row. accessed May 1. senior editor. Volume 9 Page 19 BIBLIOGRAPHY Beard. 1985. January 1995. New York/Oxford: Oxford University Press. http://odur. 1961--79. ed. Cooke. October 19.org/chomsky/talks/9410-education. Chicago. p. Stourzh. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Gerald. Washington/London: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. New York: Harper & Brothers.zmag. ed.. accessed April 29. Jacob E.html. 2002.2002. 1997. THE PAPERS OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON. ALEXANDER HAMILTON. 1991. Lisa Marie. 1982. Harold C. John C. Mellon Lecture. Stanley and Eric McKitrick. 1912. Miller. de Carolis. Charles. Morton J. Noam.htm. Morton J. 1999. Syrett. Frisch. Stanford: Stanford University Press. ALEXANDER HAMILTON. Noam. Charles Scribner's Sons. Z MAGAZINE. University of Groningen. NATIONAL REVIEW. 1959. AMERICAN. Richard. 13. 1970. Frisch. Brookhiser.let. 1994 http://www. THE AGE OF FEDERALISM.rug.com . Loyola University. 1993. ALEXANDER HAMILTON AND THE IDEA OF REPUBLICAN GOVERNMENT. THE REPORTS OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON. 1964. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology.wcdebate.. Elkins. ALEXANDER HAMILTON AND THE POLITICAL ORDER.
vindictive. 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.html. This cause would exist among us in full force." 4. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and their constitution prevents the differences that neighborhood occasions. and the dissolution of the Union would lay a foundation for similar claims between them all.com/federalist6. FEDERALIST PAPER # 6. weaknesses and evils incident to society in every shape? 3. 1787. unconnected sovereignties in the same neighborhood. For the Independent Journal. it has been said. It has been the prudent policy of Congress to appease this controversy. especially as to all that part of the Western territory which. This has been so far accomplished as. or through the submission of the Indian proprietors. To presume a want of motives for such contests as an argument against their existence. 2002. np. 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. however. 1787. November 14.com/federalist6. To look for a continuation of harmony between a number of independent. and which usually went under the name of crown lands. 1787. This. STRONG NATIONAL GOVERNMENTS ARE NEEDED BECAUSE HUMANS ARE VINDICTIVE Alexander Hamilton. extinguishing that secret jealousy which disposes all states to aggrandize themselves at the expense of their neighbors. For the Independent Journal. Territorial disputes have at all times been found one of the most fertile sources of hostility among nations. 2002. whose situations have borne the nearest resemblance to our own. constitutes nations natural enemies. November 15. till it was relinquished in the treaty of peace. Perhaps the greatest proportion of wars that have desolated the earth have sprung from this origin. in the event of disunion. FEDERALIST PAPER # 6. http://federalistpapers. that vicinity or nearness of situation.html. if these States should either be wholly disunited. A man must be far gone in Utopian speculations who can seriously doubt that. 1787. November 14.html. 2002. by prevailing upon the States to make cessions to the United States for the benefit of the whole.com/federalist7. accessed May 2. FEDERALIST PAPER # 6. http://federalistpapers. UNION IS THE ANTIDOTE TO HOSTILITY BETWEEN NATIONS Alexander Hamilton. 2002. There still are discordant and undecided claims between several of them.html. p. 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. November 14. p. the subdivisions into which they might be thrown would have frequent and violent contests with each other. TERRITORIAL DISPUTES CAUSE STRIFE: STRONG NATIONAL GOVERNMENT IS NEEDED Alexander Hamilton. either by actual possession. np. A dismemberment of the Confederacy. and to set at defiance the accumulated experience of ages.wcdebate. From this summary of what has taken place in other countries.com/federalist6. accessed May 2. accessed May 2. Volume 9 Page 20 FEDERAL CONSTITUTION AND STRONG CENTRAL GOVERNMENTS ARE NEEDED 1. would revive this dispute. was subjected to the jurisdiction of the king of Great Britain. and would create others on the same subject. was at all events an acquisition to the Confederacy by compact with a foreign power. or only united in partial confederacies. that it has from long observation of the progress of society become a sort of axiom in politics. p. The States within the limits of whose colonial governments they were comprised have claimed them as their property. and rapacious. 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. under a continuation of the Union.com . http://federalistpapers. np. would be to disregard the uniform course of human events. 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. to afford a decided prospect of an amicable termination of the dispute. For the Independent Journal. 2. We have a vast tract of unsettled territory within the boundaries of the United States.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. For the Independent Journal. FEDERALIST PAPER # 7. WE NEED A STRONG CENTRAL GOVERNMENT Alexander Hamilton. http://federalistpapers. would be to forget that men are ambitious. accessed May 2. the others have contended that the rights of the crown in this article devolved upon the Union. BECAUSE THE WORLD ISN¶T PERFECT.
2002. and that the equal right to employ unequal talents would necessarily lead to economic inequality. although not necessarily equitable. HAMILTON¶S NATIONAL BANK WAS AN ENGINE OF PROSPERITY Lisa Marie de Carolis. Securing the support of the wealthy was only a first step in his complete economic picture.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. The accumulation of wealth was not Hamilton's goal.. provide a uniform currency. pointing invariably to its true pole. As Lincoln repeatedly emphasized. in their understanding. and the pursuit of happiness. abilities which were by nature unequal.. steady.independent. Hamilton's vision was dynamic and made use of all the possibilities of a young nation with unlimited resources and boundless potential.htm. provide capital for investments and industry.. University of Dallas. simply drawing on realities that he felt. liberty.2002. Hamilton envisioned a strong economy in which everyone could participate and profit. as it were. or social capacity. 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. 3.rug. . and opened up wider vistas in international trade and domestic industrialization. would benefit the nation as a whole in the long run.wcdebate. http://odur. accessed May 1.htm. opposed to the principle of equality. among which are life. He explained: "The keen. the prosperity of the institution . http://www. Hamilton reasoned. he wanted to encourage the use of private wealth for beneficial enterprises. whereas paper wealth was fluid." Independent Institute Website.intellect. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton. Department of Alfa-informatica.html. as usual.org/tii/students/GarveyEssay97Upham. Department of Politics. thus creating more jobs and income sources for a burgeoning population. Private ownership. their conception of human equality necessarily excluded equality of condition.did not mean to say all were equal in. was limiting and limited. and which would incite fierce protest on the part of those who feared that Hamilton aimed to create an aristocracy. and that it would unavoidably result from that very liberty itself.let. Department of Alfa-informatica. regulate banking practices around the country. HAMILTON BELIEVED IN EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY. . 1997. The Founders¶ attachment to economic freedom was in no way. Industry would diversify labor. magnetic sense.com .nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. moral developments. accessed May 1. They believed that everyone had an equal right to exercise his individual abilities to acquire property. np.let. accessed May 1. represented by the Virginia opposition. would prevent the corruption which might result if the bank were run by government officials as was the Bank of England. the equality proclaimed in the Declaration is not an equality in all respects.rug." 2. and loan the government money in times of emergency. 1997. http://odur. Landed wealth. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton." Hamilton explained that a national bank would provide a safe depository for government funds. "The Primacy of Property Rights and the American Founding.2002. The "authors of that notable instrument. as proprietors.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. Volume 9 Page 21 HAMILTON¶S ECONOMIC IDEAS WERE GOOD 1.¶ This they said and this meant. University of Groningen. This was Hamilton's most controversial position about which he was quite frank. 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). in the Directors of a Bank.. University of Groningen. Hamilton was. p. in what respects they did considered all men created equal²equal in µcertain unalienable rights. NOT FORCED EQUITY David Upham. The bank proposed by Hamilton would be a national institution run by a private board of directors. 1997. HAMILTON¶S SUPPORT OF THE WEALTHY DIDN¶T INTEND TO CREATE ARISTOCRACY Lisa Marie de Carolis. Hamilton saw it as no less than an engine of national prosperity and a necessary ancillary to his overall plan. of their own interest. and. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." Moreover. They defined with tolerable distinctiveness.
In the mind of Mr. safeguarded on the one hand against the possibilities of despotism and on the other against the onslaught of majorities. of course. The beast may not yet be tamed. sometimes quite literally.org/chomsky/talks/9410education. 13." Mr. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. as he believed the Bolsheviks intended. Madison. every page of the laconic record of the proceedings of the convention.the main concern.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. They feel. being independence." in the terminology favored by leading planners -. but it is being caged. 3. These ideas have become ever more entrenched in educated circles. in passing. that some check therefore was to be sought for against this tendency of our governments. Z MAGAZINE." Mr. He said there was the idea that your people are a great beast and that the real disease is democracy. 2. p. Restating the Doctrine without equivocation. COMMON PEOPLE A MENACE Noam Chomsky. HAMILTON THOUGHT THE ³WELL BORN´ SHOULD RUN THE COUNTRY Charles Beard.wcdebate. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 2002. the masters have long sought to contain popular struggles to expand the range of meaningful democracy and human rights. 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. 1994. np. 13. whatever cast it takes. Chicago. It therefore became necessary to renew with much greater intensity the constant campaign to tame and cage that "great beast. HAMILTON BELIEVED DEMOCRACY WAS A GREAT BEAST. HAMILTON SOUGHT TO PRESERVE THE POWER OF THE RICH Noam Chomsky." as Alexander Hamilton termed the "people" with horror and indignation as he was laying the foundations for state-guided industrial democracy. Gerry. October 19." or even influential. January 1995. speaking for a host of others). http://www. Loyola University. urged that "all communities divide themselves into the few and the many. 31.zmag. That's the hysterical and utterly erroneous reaction that's pretty standard among people who feel that their power is threatened. in tracing these evils to their origin. 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. observed "that the general object was to provide a cure for the evils under which the United States labored. 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. he "had been taught by experience the danger of the levelling spirit. that. rolling back the threat posed by the "great beast" that keeps trying "to plunder the rich" (Alexander Hamilton and John Foster Dulles. p. The first are the rich and well born and the other the mass of the people who seldom judge or determine right. The basic attitudes coming into this century were expressed very clearly by Woodrow Wilson's Secretary of State. historian.com . The architects of policy can move on to establish a utopia of the masters based on the values of greed and power. sometimes in chains of dogma and deceit. shows conclusively that the members of that assembly were not seeking to realize any fine notions about democracy and equality." 4. in advocating a life term for Senators. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. Hamilton. Indeed. preserved to posterity by Mr. Z MAGAZINE. p. as Jefferson's fears and Bakunin's predictions were increasingly realised. Mellon Lecture. and that a good Senate seemed most likely to answer the purpose. the evils they had experienced flowed "from the excess of democracy. p. Eighty years earlier Alexander Hamilton had put it clearly. every man had found it in the turbulence and follies of democracy. but now perceive that they can do better. That's Hamilton. attitudes that led to Wilson's Red Scare. Professor of Linguistics at MIT. accessed April 29. We may recall. January 1995. Randolph.html. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. Robert Lansing." and he confessed that while he was still republican. Volume 9 Page 22 HAMILTON WAS OPPOSED TO DEMOCRACY 1. in offering to the consideration of the convention his plan of government. which destroyed labour and independent thought for a decade. perhaps rightly. HAMILTON FEARED DEMOCRACY AND FREEDOM Noam Chomsky. an important victory. Lansing warned of the danger of allowing the "ignorant and incapable mass of humanity" to become "dominant in the earth. that they can dismantle the social contract that has been in some measure achieved. 1912. as it was called.
let. he added.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. Department of Alfa-informatica. University of Groningen." 3. "the majority. HAMILTON RELIED ON THE WEALTHY ALLYING THEMSELVES WITH STATE POWER Lisa Marie de Carolis. Hume observed.. in concluding this splendid piece of logic. and thus helps spread "arts and industry throughout the whole society. p. indebts the nation to foreign powers. with variations more suited to the United States' unique characteristics.nl/~usa/B/hamilton/hamil00. whereas paper capital fosters a more international mentality. 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. from the influence of these on the sentiments and views of the respective proprietors ensued a division of society into different interests and parties." while the Senate was to preserve the rights of property and the interests of the minority against the demands of the majority. HAMILTON¶S GOVERNMENT IDEAS FOCUSED ON PROTECTING THE RICH Charles Beard. hence. historian. Securities. Public credit was to become the pillar of Hamilton's fiscal reform package. np. and in his opinion. Mr. accessed May 1." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. must be rendered by their number and local situation unable to concert and carry into effect schemes of oppression". accessed May 1.. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton. the continuing vitality of the British economy was enough to prove the efficacy of their system. 2002. Hume contended. the protection of these faculties was the first object of government." Landed wealth. 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. The House of Representatives. Hume felt that the evils greatly outweighed the advantages. "was so formed as to render it particularly the guardian of the poorer orders of citizens. 1997.rug. Hume emphasized the many evils of a credit-based economy. Hamilton pointed out. Nevertheless. from which the rights of property originated. Department of Alfa-informatica. warning that a funded debt necessitates oppressive taxes to pay the interest. 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. . p. A Biography of Alexander Hamilton.No plan could succeed which does not unite the interest and credit of rich individuals with that of the state. which in turn makes commodities cheaper and easier to procure. he contended. HAMILTON IGNORED HUME¶S WARNINGS ABOUT THE SYSTEM HE FAVORED Lisa Marie de Carolis. FRAMING THE CONSTITUTION. In order to stimulate the economy. Hamilton needed big investors.htm. 2. http://odur. np. University of Groningen. 31.rug. from the protection of different and unequal faculties of acquiring property the possession of different degrees and kinds of property immediately resulted.htm. 1997. the "invigorating principle" which would infuse the United States with the energy and international respectability he had envisioned. 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. 1912. the availability of which enables merchants to engage in more extensive trade enterprises. http://odur. and a more diverse economy. by the system of checks and balances placed in the government. the convention safeguarded the interests of property against attacks by majorities. Mr. but pointed out some advantages to a credit-based economy. and renders the stock holders largely idle and useless for everything but playing the market. p. creates dangerous disparities in wealth. Hamilton dismissed Hume's warnings and instead focused on the positive aspects of national credit." Uniformity of interests throughout the state. provide ready capital with the value and function of specie.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. makes "country gentlemen" out of wealthy merchants. However. Volume 9 Page 23 HAMILTON WAS AN ECONOMIC ELITIST 1.wcdebate. was impossible on account of the diversity in the faculties of men. having such coexistent passion or interest. 2002. Hamilton based his program primarily on the British model. The support and capital of the nation's wealthiest citizens would provide the foundation and security of his system.let. Hume in particular was cautionary about the British system. In the tenth number of The Federalist.com .
who did which paper (Hamilton. regulate commerce. a great deal of writing was done by various political figures that advocated different positions on what direction the country ought to take. and partially to the fact that history has not glorified their accomplishments as it has the Federalists. The Anti-Federalists also used pseudonyms borrowed from past figures from Rome (as well as other names). and John Jay under the pseudonym ³Publius. 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. 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.wcdebate. Given their position in history as one of the main political groups at the time of the crafting of the Constitution. notably the Shays Rebellion that occurred in Massachusetts for half a year before it could be quelled. there is not an established number to each document or speech that constituted Anti-Federalist contributions to the political debate. Although the new Constitution was passed largely the way that the Federalists hoped it would be. The contingent of people who felt that the proposed Constitution had too strong of a Central government were known as the Anti-Federalists. Therefore the issue of liberty was foremost in the minds of Americans when considering how to craft a government of their own. The American Revolution came about for a myriad of reasons. the identity of the authors of the Anti-Federalist papers is not always known. The inability of the federal government to take care of a lot of problems. These papers. and the various potential pros and cons to such a political system. but instead have had a profound influence upon the entirety of American politics. This federalist camp by and large supported the proposed Constitution that was being debated at the Conventions. HISTORICAL CONTEXT The driving issues in early American political theory arose as a response to the treatment of the original colonies by Great Britain. This is partially due to the less organized nature of the Anti-Federalists. The first attempt was guided by the Articles of Confederation. with that of the Anti-Federalists being one of the most extreme. which established a very limited central government with strong powers left to the individual states. Contemporary readers might feel as if these terms are backwards. Anti-federalists. as opposed to the republican government that connected to the citizens only via mediating representatives. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. support for it was by no means unanimous. First. the Anti-Federalists were not as organized in their publications. Moreover. 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. 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. Jay.´ advocated a much stronger central government than what the Articles provided. Viewing these and many other aspects of the Articles as deep flaws. but it is not always conclusive which actual person lies behind what name. the Anti-Federalists are no mere moment in history. or Madison) is well documented. or a great many other things that are matter of course for the federal government today. therefore. supported a more direct democracy. However. some of the major figures behind the movement. There have been a variety of different approaches to that question over the years. seemed to the Federalists a clear signal that a new Constitution was needed. James Madison. amending the Articles required unanimity among the states. This essay will explore the context surrounding the Anti-Federalists.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Anti-Federalist differ from the Federalist Papers in a few significant ways. many called for some kind of reform. Even though the Federalist Papers bore the same pen name.com . written by Alexander Hamilton. The Confederation could not collect taxes. the benefits of which were lost in such a massive government. Secondly. it is important to keep in mind that terminology changes. During the time of various Constitutional Conventions. They felt that the essence of democracy could only be carried out on a small scale. all connected to the desire to have independence from the tyrannical rule of the British monarchy.
´ Clinton did his best to block ratification of the Constitution. but when it was approved by the requisite nine states at the Convention in his very own state. that the government has. To understand Anti-Federalists merely in terms of modern-day states-rights discourse would be in a sense misleading. there is no way for Representatives to actually know the desires of the people they are voting for. Richard Henry Lee. Today what we have is a republic. 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. there are a host of different possible options to be argued for. 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. This ensures that oftentimes the majority opinion does not even constitute over half of the population.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. While of course they all had minor differences. while they share some of the same beliefs. Clinton authored some of the Anti-Federalist papers that were published under the name ³Cato. ideas. Clinton acquiesced. or amount of control. When the words ³big´ or ³small´ are used to describe governments today.wcdebate. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. one of the authors of the Federalist Papers. There are a great many other important Anti-Federalist thinkers: James Winthrop. Especially given the US¶s self-proclaimed status as a melting pot of races.´ ³Old Whig. 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. and later would become Vice President for both Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Anti-Federalism is an entirely different view of what government means than is considered in contemporary political discourse. direct democracy becomes simply unfeasible. Samuel Bryan. cultures. One such person is Patrick Henry. one of his greatest criticisms of it was the lack of any explicit limitations upon the powers of the federal government.´ or ³Federal Farmer´ may be an ongoing debate. it is typically meant to designate the bureaucracy.com . Henry did not support the Constitution that was eventually passed in 1787. which the Bill of Rights provided (to some extent). Even were polling perfectly accurate. And it is true that Anti-Federalists would argue for a less massive government. making most of the people¶s wishes going unheeded. Since potential actions to be taken by Congress are almost never a black and white issue. 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´. where representatives are elected with the supposed task of voicing the opinions of all of the people in Congress. and only samples a small part of the population. it becomes all the more difficult for any group to get the policy they want. No. and so on. This is democracy at its most tenuous. Henry associated the Federalist supporters with the kind of aristocracy that the Revolutionary War was meant to free America from. The inclusion of a Bill of Rights into the Constitution is owed in part to Patrick Henry. and others. While his famous quotation in which he prefers liberty to life became one of the central rallying cries of the Revolution. but they would also stress that said governing body has to be concerned with a vastly smaller area than the US currently is. Clinton despised Madison. some of the more important figures in the theory are well known. but took the post after his own Presidential ambitions were dashed. Volume 9 Page 25 WHO THEY WERE While the issue of which Anti-Federalist authors were behind the works of pseudonyms such as ³Brutus. The closest way to understanding the will of the electorate ± polling ± is remarkably inaccurate. it was promised to be included by Congress shortly thereafter. not the one in the Funkadelic Parliament. the problem of majority tyranny arises. George Clinton was the first governor of New York during the ratification of the Constitution. Ironically he ended up Vice-President to Madison. This is because when a regime is in control over a large enough populace. Another prominent Anti-Federalist was George Clinton. while he never supported the Constitution. Robert Yates. 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. While the Bill of Rights was not included in the initial signing of the Constitution. For one.
then one can spend their time caring for the polis (city). Finally. Even if every state kept standing militias. and therefore be happy and free. 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. While it is certainly possible for a person of a different station to understand the situation of a common person. Therefore. whereby one toils to take care of private necessities. let alone the middle class who spend a great deal of time working to (for example) put their kids through college.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. be achieved. find that situation lacking. But even if all of the things above were not true. on the other hand. Indeed. the arts. The current controversy over money spent in campaigns is telling. 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. and similar pursuits. 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. some economic resources? Threats from other countries are even more frightening. contends that the highest form of human existence lies in the participation in politics. The next highest is work. one would have to not be tied to any sort of private concerns that would distract from that goal. there is no way a national army Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and without a strong federal ability to tax. 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. have the time and resources to become a serious politician. and Senators and Representatives were somehow able to represent the wishes of their constituents completely accurately. No one struggling to earn enough money to survive. The reason for this is because. which encompasses crafts. Therefore the most glory came from being an honored statesman in the city-state. Anti-Federalism dovetails nicely with one of the main tenets of Hannah Arendt¶s belief on the nature of politics. 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. one can readily find fault with such a small-scale system of government. Once all private demands are met. Only that way can the desire to life a public life.wcdebate. The lowest is that of labor. say. This is not to suggest that the Anti-Federalists merely wanted to copy the Greeks. many Anti-Federalists charged that it was elite interests that motivated the structure of the government set up in the Constitution. 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. In fact. 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. Arendt. 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. interestingly enough. and therefore used slavery to divest themselves of the need to do tasks that they consider menial. such as food and shelter.com . The difference lies in the fact that our conception of politics is as a means to an end. but it is often still private in nature. the highest type of human activity is what Arendt says the Greeks considered true ³action´: politics. precisely because they see participation in politics as an end to itself. To achieve enough public recognition to get elected. an important political theorist from this century. There is the possibility of public appreciation of work. This problem has gotten even more out of control given the importance of self-advertisement during campaigns. The ancient Greeks despised labor. it would seem difficult to coordinate efforts. What is to stop one state from deciding to use aggressive force against another to take. AntiFederalists. She draws upon Greek culture in her book THE HUMAN CONDITION to explain the various degrees of human activity. THE CASE AGAINST THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS As pretty of a picture of an idyllic small town democracy this paints. 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. But even if stringent campaign finance reform measures were to pass. First and foremost is a problem with security from threats both internal and external. Christopher Duncan explains why it is that Anti-Federalists place intrinsic value upon direct democracy. Provided that a Senator votes the way someone theoretically would want them to. In other words. people tend to be only concerned with issues such as representation insofar as they get what they want. Anti-Federalists would still have a large problem with the massive republic that we live in today. this is often not the case. the political sphere and one¶s own relationship to it can be safely ignored. 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.
environmental theory has taught that those situations are dangerous given the transitory nature of pollution. Countries don¶t just go around attacking each other for land nowadays. Strict laws governing the states are needed to keep them accountable for their environmental damage. it is natural that uprisings like the Shay¶s Rebellion would occur during a country¶s birth pangs. rights. 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. A strong central government seems to be a prerequisite of peace and order. In that sense there likelihood of an attack against the US might decrease. wars tend to start due to tensions over disagreements. one might question the incentive for other countries to attack the United States if it were more decentralized. Having a national bank system. economic prosperity seems to be a direct result of a strong federal government. In addition to security. The most famous example of this comes with the controversy concerning segregation in the South. While the Anti-Federalists sought to organize small like-minded communities. There might not be any way to have stopped that discrimination throughout the country in the system promoted by the Anti-Federalists.wcdebate.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. but it is a huge issue now.com . The 50 states retain a massive amount of control over criminal laws. 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. RESPONSES TO SOME OF THE ATTACKS ON THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS While this list of problems might seem difficult for the Anti-Federalists to overcome. Volume 9 Page 27 could be built and maintained that would comport to the standards necessary to be competitive. it is very possible that their mistrust of a strong central government was not merely reactionary fear stemming from their dealings with Great Britain. 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. Given how complex the economic system is today. internal commerce. there are a variety of important tasks that can only be performed by the national government that seem integral to maintaining a healthy economy. such as funding of the sciences and arts. The negative effects of industry in one county or state could most directly affect another area completely. Until the Supreme Court decision of Brown versus the Board of Education of Topeka. With regard to the security issue. As for internal problems. and so forth. but there is less reason to believe such events would be a matter of course without a powerful federal government. the Federal Reserve ± all are functions that are distinctly national in character. a brand new turn is taken in the relationship between individuals. 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. These protections against discrimination apply to sexism and other forms of oppression through the Equal Protection amendment. issuing bonds. hope is not lost yet. Power over such things as taxation has certainly not spiraled into overwhelming tyranny. Few would call the powers that the federal government claims right to now ³tyrannical´ by any means. Nor is there a complete disregard for the rights and powers of the states even within this system. Even if there is some sacrifice of liberties in order to make those things possible. countries would no longer have cause to resent the US throwing its superpower weight around world affairs. While the fundamental motivation for the Anti-Federalists was the protection of liberty through democracy. Many authors specifically respond to some of these criticisms and explain why they might not seem as problematic as they seem. None could be performed during the Articles of Confederation. schools wouldn¶t allow blacks the same educational opportunities. 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. 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. with those citizens lacking any method of recourse. 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. This picture of rights flips on its head the problem envisioned by the Anti-Federalists of a tyrannical national government. and the government. A thriving economy is a necessary condition for a lot of other things. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.
The Federalist model did establish an effective system for pursuing one¶s private wishes. 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. It can be used in its specific historical context to criticize or justify the Constitution. it is natural to question just how successful the country is economically. the Constitution may have been promoted mainly by Federalists. Money alone cannot produce happiness. instead of merely a republic where no one¶s interests but the very powerful are furthered. can be much more fundamental to human happiness than amassing material wealth. as a political theory taken in general.com . Even if the federal government has not proven to turn into a tyranny. such as greater states rights in a particular area. The American political tradition has always been a product of the dialectic of both of those movements. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. True happiness is found in one¶s civic existence. Instead. but economic might is not necessarily the highest aim for a country. Participation in a public democracy. Perhaps the widespread depression exhibited in American society today is a result of the alienation felt towards one¶s fellow humans. local. 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. no matter what the Gross Domestic Product statistics say.wcdebate. As the lower class gets larger and poorer. but those are nothing more than glorified necessities taken too far. but its inclusion of a Bill of Rights. 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. Moreover. its principles of maintaining a genuine democracy can be utilized to argue in favor of smaller changes. and it can even create tensions in a society where the wealth is increasingly becoming concentrated in a small percentage of the population. as Hannah Arendt suspects. has many potential benefits and downfalls. It is certain that the country would be less economically prosperous if it had developed more along AntiFederalist lines. federal governments. and therefore in direct democracy.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 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. as well as a few other modifications to it are distinctly Anti-Federalist in nature. CONCLUSION Anti-Federalism. The most skillful use of it will be to argue for a particular type of democracy that actually involves people. Given the swing in opinion towards protecting the environment and ending discrimination. Volume 9 Page 28 Issues such as the environment and minority rights could be dealt with in a collective fashion. there is little denying that politics in this country has become an affair of the rich and elite. 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 political system is wholly comprised of one ideology or another.
Arendt. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. AND LETTERS DURING THE STRUGGLE OVER RATIFICATION. 1987. 1992. THE HUMAN CONDITION. THE COMPLETE ANTI-FEDERALIST. Ketcham. John Wiley & Sons. inc. 1992. WE THE PEOPLE: FOUNDATIONS. 1995. Richard. Northern Illinois University Press. ARTICLES. Dry. Georgetown Press. 1997. 1992. University of Chicago Press. TAKING THE CONSTITUTION SERIOUSLY. Sinopoli. THE RADICALISM OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION. 1981. Simon & Schuster. Bailyn. Gordon. Herbert. Kenneth. Storing. Hoffer. Bruce. and Storing. FROM MANY.wcdebate. Duncan. Library of America. Wood.com . 1986.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. THE DEBATE ON THE CONSTITUTION: FEDERALIST AND ANTIFEDERALIST SPEECHES. University of Chicago Press. THE ANTI-FEDERALIST PAPERS AND THE CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION DEBATES. Alfred Knopf. WHAT THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS WERE FOR. Bernard. Walter. Robert. University of Colorado Press. Penguin. Murray. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT. 1958. THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS AND EARLY AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. Volume 9 Page 29 BIBLIOGRAPHY Ackerman. Herbert. 1993. Berns. Dolbeare. Harvard University Press. Ralph. A POLITICS OF TENSION: THE ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION AND AMERICAN POLITICAL IDEAS. University of Chicago Press. DIRECTIONS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. 1969. Hannah. Christopher. 1981.
extended their conquests over large territories of country. of consequence. and their interests. in process of time. Their manners and habits differ as much as their climates and productions. formed of representatives from the respective parts. diverse. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT. and that he may raise himself to grandeur on the ruins of his country. by oppressing his fellow citizens. it was an opportunity to transform themselves and expand their circle of concerns while encouraging others to do the same. ultimately disempowering.wcdebate. great and glorious. In a large republic.´ History furnishes no example of a free republic. better understood. there are trusts too great to be placed in any single subject. we shall be convinced that it forbids that we should be one government. and the consequence was. it is true. This will retard the operations of government. are in general lazy. 2. The laws and customs of the several states are. FROM MANY. so also was that of the Romans. the people. 37. IT IS EMPIRICALLY SHOWN THAT ONLY SMALL GOVERNMENTS AVOID CORRUPTION Brutus. that it will ultimately. in the words of Hannah Arendt. Self-government for the Anti-Federalists was not just a mechanistic device to ensure the safety of their fortunes. there can be no virtue. Anti-Federalist Writer. each would be in favor of its own interests and customs. 170-171. The productions of the different parts of the union are very variant. If we apply this remark to the condition of the United States. in many respects. SMALLER SCALE POLITICS ALLOW FOR HAPPINESS VIA A GENUINE PUBLIC SPHERE Christopher Duncan. a legislature. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Anti-Federalist Writer. the manners. and their sentiments are by no means coincident. GOVERNMENTS THAT RULE OVER SIMILAR PEOPLE OPERATE MORE EFFICIENTLY Brutus. as would constantly be contending with each other. the public good is sacrificed to a thousand views. If this be not the case. In a republic. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT. and without virtue there can be no happiness. sentiments. would not be too numerous to act with any care or decision. Political participation for the Anti-Federalists became an end to be pursued as well as a means. and vicious to an extreme´ are but his way of saying that without the sense of attachment and empowerment that comes with public participation. and of course are less protected. but would be composed of such heterogenous and discordant principles. Professor of Political Science. 1997. 38. be the climate what it may be. This is the theoretical thread that ties Anti²Federalist thought together. cowardly. Both of these.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. The United States includes a variety of climates. the interest of the public is easier perceived. turbulent. Agrippa¶s claims that ³freedom is necessary for industry´ and that ³in absolute governments. and in some opposite. FROM MANY. document will leave them bereft of their power to save themselves. and prevent such conclusions as will promote the public good. it is subordinate to exceptions. and more within the reach of every citizen. p. and consequently of less moderation. In a large republic there are men of large fortunes. p.com . and demand of them that they mind their own private business. abuses are of less extent. The Grecian republics were of small extent. It is the notion that the Constitution as a centralizing. very diverse. he has interest of his own. any thing like the extent of the United States. 1997. of consequence. 3. that their governments were changed from that of free governments to those of the most tyrannical that ever existed in the world. and depends on accidents. and the representatives of one part will be continually striving against those of the other. THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS AND EARLY AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT. ³banish the citizens from the public realm into the privacy of their households. Volume 9 Page 30 THE ANTI-FEDERALIST VISION OF SMALLER GOVERNMENT IS SUPERIOR 1. 1995. and interests of the people should be similar. In a small one. he soon begins to think that he may be happy. 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.´ 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. and. p. there will be a constant clashing of opinions.
42. Loyola University New Orleans School of Law. Volume 9 Page 31 ANTI-FEDERALISM GIVES RIGHTS AND PREVENTS DISCRIMINATION 1. ANTI-FEDERALISM STOPS RACIAL DISCRIMINATION James Etienne Viator. 1997. The distinction here is once again of critical importance from a theoretical perspective. Communal welfare and justice were both the products of local political conversations. p. which accounts for the nine-vote decisionmaking threshold and the provisions for unanimity with regard to amendment that marked the Articles. what can you promise yourselves. it should be clear that there was no such thing as the general welfare of the country. depends in a great measure on their limits. will oppress and grind you²where. not on questions of the general welfare but on questions of mutual and general welfare.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. or at least in the opinion we have of security. 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 -. Furthermore. the latter. they have agreed to protect each other from external dangers to their collective²not individual²liberties. 2. and this security therefore. Political liberty. 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. Anti-Federalist Writer. the great Montesquieu again observes. and by which you are to be conducted into a monarchy. This moderation in governments. 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. From this picture. where the mildness of the laws. which results in the continuing existence of white bloc voting. or the opinion. 2000. rather. FROM MANY. is a government derived from neither nature. either limited or despotic. Mr. Spring. 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. Using an innovative mixture of campaign news stories and public opinion surveys of voters. LOYOLA JOURNAL OF PUBLIC INTEREST LAW. whose ambition for power. which produces this security. or the opinion. were open to a good deal of ³relative´ interpretation). and aggrandizement. and observe. on the score of consolidation of the United States. Keith Reeves demonstrated the continued presence of bigoted attitudes among white voters.wcdebate. from the vast extent of your territory. Thus the mode of operation was consensual rather than majoritarian or adversarial. 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. ONE: READINGS IN AMERICAN POLITICAL AND SOCIAL THOUGHT." ONLY ANTI-FEDERALIST POLITICS ALLOW TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE MULTIPLICITY OF INTERESTS Christopher Duncan. nor compact. p. consists in security. to whose contumely you will continually be an object²you must risque much. connected with their political distribution. Professor of Political Science. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. THE ANTI-FEDERALISTS AND EARLY AMERICAN POLITICAL THOUGHT." Thus. that transcended the local community and its own particular determinations about right and wrong.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. in that under the Articles of Confederation there was no ³truth or Platonic form. Associate Professor of Law. the science of government will become intricate and perplexed. In other words. 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. too. into the hands of individuals.com . and too mysterious for you to understand. 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. 78. ONLY SMALLER LIMITED GOVERNMENTS ALLOW LIBERTY Cato. p. 37-8. and to work together. other than those basic natural laws (but these. If that latter clause is read correctly. and the equality of the manners. Locke remarks. is best obtained in moderate governments. beget a confidence in the people. 1995. and the complication of interests. useful or not. by indispensably placing trusts of the greatest magnitude.
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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.
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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.
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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.
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was a degraded and corrupt reflection of "being. unchanging. His life had never been as peaceful and content as his privileged New England upbringing might have predicted. academic science of modernist philosophy.A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds. one must first and foremost understand its derivation from Platonism. He influenced Henry David Thoreau and. 2000." Things changed. optimistic about humanity. and Emerson was as anti-systemic as they come. Plato. Volume 9 Page 35 Ralph Waldo Emerson died of pneumonia on April 27. a continent perhaps more ready for it that Europe had ever been. his differences from Plato (especially in Emerson¶s faith in humanity and democracy).wcdebate. This paradoxical figure would influence a certain strain of American thought well into the 20th century. certain major themes stand out in his writings. In this sense. and his mystical vision of ³feeling´ or ³mood´ over logic as the basis of human understanding. people and history existed. Emerson was the first major thinker in America to offer up non-Western. and incorruptible. non-linear thinking as an alternative to the dry.To be great is to be misunderstood. I will describe his Platonic conception of spirit as primary and matter as secondary. Plato believed that the realm of "being" was absolute. As George Santayana characterizes him: Similarly. Emerson. Brown. living entities died. 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. immaterial. Today. he had his house burn down. However. however. But he remained.. Emerson had a habit of characterizing important figures of his time as somehow transcendent.. values. must be a nonconformist. in contrast. To understand transcendentalism. and perfection was unattainable. and politics.com . one of the most influential thinkers in the history of Western civilization. inspired civil disobedience advocates from Ghandi to Martin Luther King. Plato envisioned a realm of "perfect forms. LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY." In this section I will argue that it is possible to trace several complimentary (if sometimes contradictory) ideas in Emerson¶s writings. who he saw as intrinsically tied to the transcendent and divine. seemed to de-value understanding in favor of heavenly emotions. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and have great potential for debates over morality. removed from day-to-day history. EMERSON¶S IDEAS "Whosoever would be a man. they could only contemplate it. a child. Philosophers usually seek some kind of analytic understanding. Ordinary humans could contemplate this world of spirit provided they shed their worldly concerns and concentrate only on philosophical ideals.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook." where matter. two brothers. And his marriage of philosophy. But humans could never really reach such a world. in doing so. at least in principle. he lost a spouse. even as they sought to reform the conditions of the time. Even to call it ³transcendentalism´ seems a stretch. it is impossible to systematize or categorize Emerson¶s thinking. since ³-isms´ are usually systems. 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. 669). he was even more a mystic than Plato. Spring. and lived through the Civil War. was the first major figure to posit a distinction between spirit and matter.. while the realm of "becoming. 1882. theology and poetry brought romanticism to America. p.." where the things and ideas we contemplate exist in a state of unchanging consistency.
to being a pantheist. unlike Plato. Emerson and the other transcendentalists turned toward the mystical world of the Romantics. higher understanding. whilst you rise from your bed. He means to be irresponsible to all that holds him back from his self-development. Emerson believed human beings and human endeavors were innately good. You cannot. at the end of "Circles. or doctrines. with your best deliberation and heed. or walk abroad in the morning after meditating the matter before sleep on the previous night" (Emerson. history. Emerson.´ Like the German and British Romantics. Whereas Plato ultimately appealed to reason and a kind of logic to govern philosophical thought. This serves as a useful transition into Emerson¶s belief in the connectedness of all creatures and things.edu/entries/emerson/). I wish to concentrate on this last point a little more. He was very close.´ 2. In other words. politics and the like. Emerson trusted instinct and emotion. the coming only is sacred" (CW2: 189) (http://plato. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. come so close to any question as your spontaneous glance shall bring you. being and becoming.´ and in doing so lose the spontaneous connection to creation and nature that Romantics saw as vital to a higher kind of understanding. It is instructive to note that Emerson differed from Plato in a few important ways: 1.com . "Intellect"). believed it impossible "to extricate oneself from the questions in which your age is involved. viewpoints.wcdebate. 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. Emerson did not believe history or human interaction were irrelevant. it would make sense that a transcendentalist would value the ³spirit´ of emotion more than the analysis of individual thoughts. as the basis of genuine knowledge. In the world of flux that he depicts in that essay. As mentioned. This is apparent in Emerson's position against slavery. Like many of transcendentalism's central themes. Emerson believed that it was possible to ³think too much." as he puts it. he did believe that a mystical spirit-reality existed and was the true inspiration for human greatness. transcends the old Aristotelian maxim that things cannot be both true and false. the notion of a "unitary soul" uniting all humankind seems more "Eastern" than "Western. Although. Emerson really means to "accept. in this respect. Emerson believed contradictory premises were simply stepping-stones to a higher. which he saw as our connection to the divine. Emerson viewed emotion as the emanation of the divine. Transcendentalism.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. the past is always swallowed and forgotten." including emotions such as love. Plato rejected human matters. This was reflected in Emerson¶s faith in democracy. 3." he writes that he is "only an experimenter«with no Past at my back" (CW2: 188). 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 put forth a mystical sense of "vision. Emerson combined this idea of the essential unity of all things and creatures with a belief in the innate goodness of humanity. as corruptible facets of the realm of becoming. as its name implies. on the other hand. because. It was fortunate that Emerson believed history and human interaction were important. This way of thinking has been called Emerson¶s ³epistemology of moods. a system of government Plato categorically rejected. Since that connectedness is more real than the analytic separateness of individual thinking. based more on feeling than analysis. as we shall see. He wrote: "Our spontaneous action is always the best. After all.stanford. 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. and in turn viewed the divine as an aggregate reflection of all creatures and things." 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. "the clangor and jangle of contrary tendencies" (CW3: 36). Like Hegel. comprehensive understanding.
2000. 669)." some geniuses manage to serve large groups because they 'stand for facts. p. was a method by which human beings could serve as "lenses through which we read our own minds." As each person searches for the perfectly fitted lens. or other distinct groups. Obsession with power: As much as Emerson extolled the sins of slavery and patriarchy. divine virtue (which Emerson also calls ³beauty´). Brown. George Santayana among them. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. There are two more important political implications found in Emerson. Spring. OBJECTIONS TO EMERSON As already noted. explains his opposition to slavery and his position in favor of women¶s emancipation. First.´ he declared) problematized his political stance against oppression. 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. and the notion of morality transcending states and governments Second. through Nature. This is true of every human being. Emerson was a strong supporter of civil disobedience against unjust laws. they will perform virtuously. 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. ³self-reliance´ is valuable to Emerson because he sees ³power´ as something that makes us human. In his essay ³Self-Reliance. of course. Insofar as human beings embrace their connection to transcendent. Second. critics sometimes contend that he glosses over many injustices that are on par with slavery. but it also reflects Emerson¶s desire to be a truly ³American´ thinker at a time when Americans were confronting and conquering ³the frontier. Because he held an almost Nietzschian awe of power. 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. such as rapid industrialization or capitalist exploitation. and it inspired Henry David Thoreau¶s entire essay ³Civil Disobedience. and dependence on others as a natural indictment of that power.' ´ (Thomas J. This. democracy. This is the most well-known of Emerson¶s philosophies.´ Emerson argues that Nature reveals moral truth. "the otherest. 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. doubt that it¶s even proper to call Emerson a philosopher. the necessity of self-reliance. Because of this. This is another instance of the inconsistency cited earlier.´ The problem is that Emerson never really comes to terms with how his pronouncements on power (³Life is a search after power. Volume 9 Page 37 For Emerson. Emerson¶s philosophy strongly supports civil disobedience and the refusal to follow unjust laws. however imperfect. 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). LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY. he also extolled the virtues of capitalism." Like friendship and reading.com . morality is more important than obeying the law.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and for thoughts. and the power of individual action. This obsession with power has long been a rallying point against Emerson. democracy offered a variation of the process by which other individuals act as "lenses through which we read our own minds. Emerson¶s philosophy makes a very optimistic statement about human nature. Implications for Debate First.´ Emerson¶s embrace of civil disobedience comes from two areas of his philosophy: antimajoritarianism. since governments are not the ultimate source of morality. Some critics. In this way.wcdebate. presumably.
W. Emerson¶s eloquence. would probably call for a unity of intentions and consequences. It may even be an alternative to deontological or utilitarian modes of ethics. meaning that there will be a certain awkwardness involved in using his ideas for the sometimes-binaristic world of debate. It serves as an intrinsic justification for moral behavior. and his powerful statements against human bondage and majoritarianism. Third. because it is a reflection of transcendent beauty and goodness. Volume 9 Page 38 Although critics accuse Emerson of justifying evil. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Transcendentalist ethics. Emerson is like John Stuart Mill (who believed capitalism would evolve into a just economic system) or G.com . it may be reasonably replied that Emerson simply believes seemingly miserable situations (such as poverty) will ultimately culminate in human growth and transcendence. his optimism about humanity and democracy. Debaters interested in incorporating Emerson into their arguments should be cautioned that he is far from a systematic thinker. deontological ethics mandates the disregard of consequences. For example. This may be among Emerson¶s most ³Platonic´ philosophical notions.wcdebate. Hegel (who believed all bad states of affairs would transcend into good things). These ethical codes arguably allow one to escape from various moral responsibilities by assigning greater and lesser values to respective moral commands. compensate for his imperfect attempt to do justice to the paradoxical nature of human existence. his stance often seems anti-foundationalist and anti-analytic. However. since all phenomena and actions are linked in some way.F. on the other hand. exploitative systems (such as ruthless capitalism).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Emerson takes virtuous behavior to be among the highest ethical goods. As noted above. In this way. while utilitarian ethics mandates an exclusive focus on consequences.
Joel. Robinson. Emerson. Black. Ticknor and Fields. eds. 1900). Emerson. J. INDIAN SUPERSTITION (Hanover. THE TOPICAL NOTEBOOKS OF RALPH WALDO EMERSON (Columbia: University of Missouri Press. Alfred R. Ralph Waldo. David. 1866). EMERSON ON EDUCATION: SELECTIONS (New York: Teachers College Press. Ralph Waldo. YOUNG EMERSON SPEAKS: UNPUBLISHED DISCOURSES ON MANY SUBJECTS (Port Washington. and Whicher. Len and Myerson. 1903). Susan Sutton.: Friends of the Dartmouth Library. 1947) Emerson. 1978). WEALTH (New York: Scott-Thaw. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS (Westport: Greenwood Press.. Emerson. Osgood and Company. ed. Arthur Cushman Jr. Gougeon. Gordon Sherman. Mifflin. THE CONDUCT OF LIFE: NINE ESSAYS ON FATE. Joel. Emerson. 1969). REPRESENTATIVE MAN: RALPH WALDO EMERSON IN HIS TIME (New York: Oxford University Press. Emerson. McGiffert. Huggard. Smith. Haight. APOSTLE OF CULTURE: EMERSON AS PREACHER AND LECTURER (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.Y. 1954).com . Ralph Waldo. EMERSON¶S ANTISLAVERY WRITINGS (New Haven: Yale University Press. 1938). WITH ANTI-SLAVERY AND REFORM PAPERS (Boston. 1995). NAPOLEAN. William Allen. 1966).. ed. THE BEST OF RALPH WALDO EMERSON: ESSAYS. ed. Konvitz. Emerson. Stephen E.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 1959).. eds. 1982). Ralph Waldo. EMERSON¶S NATURE: ORIGIN. POEMS. AND OTHER PAPERS (Boston: Houghton. Merton M. NATURAL HISTORY OF INTELLECT. and Ferguson. Ralph Waldo. Ralph Waldo. Ralph Waldo. 1968). OR THE MAN OF THE WORLD (Bloomington: Indiana University Press. 1990) Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. eds. FORTUNE OF THE REPUBLIC (Boston: Hougton. Volume 9 Page 39 BIBLIOGRAPHY Allen. GROWTH. 1981). MEANING (New York: Dodd.wcdebate. EMERSON AND THE PROBLEM OF WAR AND PEACE (Iowa City: The University Press. Gay Wilson. 1878). RALPH WALDO EMERSON: A BIOGRAPHY (New York: Viking Press.: Kennikat Press. Milton R. Sealts Jr. N. 1978). Porte. POWER.. 1941). N. THE EARLY LECTURES OF RALPH WALDO EMERSON (Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Mead. A YANKEE IN CANADA.H. ADDRESSES (New York: W.
Every heroic act is also decent. 15. We are taught by great actions that the universe is the property of every individual in it. EMERSON¶S PROSE AND POETRY. The visible heavens and earth sympathize with Jesus.--the persons. p. Beauty is the mark God sets upon virtue. p. This element I call an ultimate end. an act of truth or heroism seems at once to draw to itself the sky as its temple. is that which is found in combination with the human will. 2000. WE DERIVE POWER FROM BEING VIRTUOUS AND HONEST Ralph Waldo Emerson. and abdicate his kingdom. God is the all-fair. but he is entitled to the world by his constitution. Pindar. and this knowledge must inevitably determine his respect. In private places. The presence of a higher. if he will. 1986. The world thus exists to the soul to satisfy the desire of beauty. American transcendentalist philosopher. and the frame will suit the picture. he may creep into a corner. 12. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. and makes the central figure of the visible sphere. are but different faces of the same All. the sun as its candle. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. out of deference to others has been a sacrifice of a certain amount of his power over other men. 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. Every rational creature has all nature for his dowry and estate. American transcendentalist philosopher. The high and divine beauty which can be loved without effeminacy. American transcendentalist philosopher. 1986. only let his thoughts be of equal greatness. that it to say. It is his. in its largest and profoundest sense. associate themselves fitly in our memory with the geography and climate of Greece. 1986. POWER IS DERIVED FROM VIRTUOUS BEHAVIOR 1. Nature stretches out her arms to embrace man. Homer. and causes the place and the bystanders to shine. every departure from his own convictions. American transcendentalist philosopher. among sordid objects.wcdebate. and nature became ancillary to a man. Socrates. p. namely. Beauty. 15. And any one who will steadily observe his own experience will I think become convinced. and beauty. Willingly does she follow his steps with the rose and the violet. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. Only let his thoughts be of equal scope. the opinions. Volume 9 Page 40 BEAUTY IS THE HIGHEST VALUE 1. of the spiritual element is essential to its perfection. VIRTUOUS ACTS ARE BEAUTIFUL AND EXPRESSES THE RATIONALITY OF THE UNIVERSE Ralph Waldo Emerson. 13. is one expression for the universe. and goodness.com . He may divest himself of it. One measure of a man¶s character is his effect upon his fellow-men. 2. p. and the day. VIRTUOUS ACTS PLACE US IN UNISON WITH THE POWER OF NATURE Ralph Waldo Emerson. and bend her lines of grandeur and grace to the decoration of her darling child.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Phocion. No reason can be asked or given why the soul seeks beauty. Truth. A virtuous man is in unison with her works. For every man knows whether he has been accustomed to receive truth or falsehood² valuable opinions or foolish talking²from his brother. 2. Every natural action is graceful. BEAUTY IS THE ULTIMATE END OF THE UNIVERSE AND ALL ACTIVITY Ralph Waldo Emerson. that every false word he has uttered. as most men do.
when I see that the public mind has never less hold of the strongest of all truths. American transcendentalist philosopher. They elude our persevering thought. They will not be written out on paper. but are simply declatory of a right which already existed. They are out of time. a sure sign of the shallowness of our intellect. if a hurricane of party feeling and a combination of monied interests can beat them to the ground? What is the use of courts. Volume 9 Page 41 MORALITY IS INNATE AND TRANSCENDENT 1. He who does a good deed is instantly ennobled. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. as laws do not make right. An immoral law makes it a man¶s duty to break it. 362. if all the guarantees provided by the jealousy of ages for the protection of liberty are made of no effect. muscular force. principles that astonish. or spoken by the tongue.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 72-73. or recurs to first principles? What is the use of a Federal Bench. WE HAVE A DUTY TO BREAK IMMORAL LAWS Ralph Waldo Emerson. justice. love. yet we read them hourly in each other¶s faces. American transcendentalist philosopher. EMERSON¶S PROSE AND POETRY. The child amidst his baubles is learning the action of light. The sense of injustice is blunted. and God. The intuition of the moral sentiment is an insight of the perfection of the laws of the soul. that an immoral contract is void. LAWS WITHOUT TRANSCENDENT JUSTICE ARE USELESS Ralph Waldo Emerson. and not subject to circumstance. 2000. gravity. appetite. What is the use of admirable law-forms and political forms. 1986. and that an immoral statute is void. The sentiment of virtue is a reverence and delight in the presence of certain divine laws. These laws execute themselves. 1986. TRANSCENDENT MORAL LAWS EXIST IN HUMAN INTUITION Ralph Waldo Emerson. I question the value of our civilization. EMERSON¶S PROSE AND POETRY. American transcendentalist philosopher. These laws refuse to be adequately stated. fear. if its opinions are the political breath of the hour? And what is the use of constitutions. pp. It is therefore a principle of law. I cannot accept the railroad and the telegraph in exchange for reason and clarity. p. if judges only quote authorities. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. For virtue is the very self of every man. It is not skill in iron locomotives that marks so fine civility as the jealousy of liberty.com . when a bad act of Congress finds a willing commissioner? 2. p. CIVIL LAWS MUST BE A REFLECTION OF TRUE. TRANSCENDENT JUSTICE 1. under what seem foolish details. THE TRUE SOURCE OF MORALITY IS IN THE UNWRITTEN LAWS OF HUMANITY¶S RELATIONSHIP WITH THE UNIVERSE AND EACH OTHER Ralph Waldo Emerson. 361. in each other¶s actions. man. I cannot think the most judicious tubing a compensation for metaphysical debility. out of space. it is not to be presumed that they can so stultify themselves as to command injustice. American transcendentalist philosopher. covers. Thus in the soul of man there is a justice whose retributions are instant and entire. interact. motion. 73. and in the game of human life. in our own remorse. EMERSON ON TRANSCENDENTALISM. p. and no judge exerts original jurisdiction. 2000. for. It perceives that this homely game of life we play. 2.wcdebate. at every hazard.
´ 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. ³Power´ and ³Wealth. 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´.´ 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. in doing so. information (and) science. pp. combination. he was also outlining a code of behavior that the superior man must follow. THE CAMBRIDGE COMPANION TO RALPH WALDO EMERSON. 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. philosopher. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS. 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. ³The Young American´ (1844)²Emerson¶s ³battle cry for the new era of industrial expansion and manifest destiny. 90.´ 2. THE CAMBRIDGE COMPANION TO RALPH WALDO EMERSON. Professor of English at Washington University of Saint Louis.´ Emerson can associate capitalism with ³amelioration in nature. p. in its room.´ 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. 1999. Volume 9 Page 42 EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY LEGITIMIZES RUTHLESS POWER AND COMPETITION 1.wcdebate.´ are unconsciously fulfilling the plan of a benevolent providence. not to block improvement. but to watch the uprise of successive mornings. who convert ³the sap and juices of the planet to the incarnation and nutriment of their design. since aligning himself with the divinely empowered forces of the age was always the condition for a living philosophy. 1962. 68-69. The difference is that where Adams the ironist would dwell on multiplicity and a vertiginous acceleration of energies without immanent purpose or foreseeable end.com . Professor of English at Washington University of Saint Louis. ³marry Right to Might. and sit till we are stone. 68.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. EMERSON SAW CAPITALIST IMPERIALISM AS THE UNFOLDING OF DIVINE WILL Robert Milder. and to conspire with the new works of new days. By emphasizing the ³anti-feudal power´ of trade. EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY LEGITIMIZES UNCHECKED CAPITALIST EXPLOITATION Robert Milder. which alone permits and authorizes amelioration in mankind. ³Life is a search after power. EMERSON GLORIFIED POWER AND ELITISM Daniel Aron. Emerson¶s respect for power and its achievements is even more glowingly expressed in two others essays. which displaces the ³physical strength´ of kings and aristocrats and ³installs´ the enlightened forces of ³computation. In these essays and elsewhere. and the successful men who understand the laws of Nature and respond to the godhead within themselves.´ Here he reiterates his preference for the ³bruisers´ and ³pirates.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Emerson was not ³co-opted´ by liberal capitalism so much as he hastened to join it. 3. and sketching the ideal political economy under which the superman might best exercise his uncommon talents. p.´ he announces.
as he thinks. Professor of English at Michigan State University.´ ³We get the impression. p.´ he recalled. then. EMERSONIAN MYSTICISM VOIDS ALL REASON AND UNDERSTANDING George Santayana. Boston existed serenely. 4. in his 1888 essay. Benefit.´ James concludes. the vaguer and more elusive they became in his hands. and having there beheld the transfigured reality. As far as James was concerned. the foul. 32-33. Far from it. and as the absolute.´ He continued. Common sense and poetry must both go by the board. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS. p. Empty. At bottom he had no doctrine at all.´ 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. God. the whole ³Concord school´ had. Mysticism. the emptying of his whole heart and mind to make room. however. an island above the extremes of common human experience. by substituting itself for it as the herald of a deeper truth. By attacking the authority of the understanding as the organon of knowledge. almost exclusively in the moral world. 2. with something of the movement of the gills of a landed fish. and the consciousness of that incapacity was so lively within him that he never attempted to give articulation to his philosophy. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. p. so that the end of his purification is the atrophy of his whole nature. perpetually untested by the ³beguilements and prizes´ of experience. 1996. Emerson¶s limited moral world was. 1962.com . or even of a definite conception of ultimate truth. EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY LACKS ANY SPECIFIC CONTENT OR DEFINITION George Santayana. EMERSON AND POWER. 35.´ The ³decidedly lean Boston´ of Emerson¶s day was self-enclosed. worship²must presently be rejected for the same reason. James writes (and he means Boston to stand for Emerson). Emerson¶s memory evoked an unforgettable series of ³impressions´ of New England¶s cultural barrenness. for God. to associate Emerson with the ³terrible paucity of alternatives. He was not a prophet who had once for all climbed his Sinai or his Tabor. as Matthiessen notes. Nature. p. Volume 9 Page 43 EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY IS IRRELEVANT TO EVERYDAY AND POLITICAL LIFE 1. The deeper he went and the more he tried to grapple with fundamental conceptions. the poetic and moral categories no less than the physical. is the surrender of a category of thought because we divine its relativity. As every new category.´ Emerson¶s ³special capacity for moral experience´²which for James meant Emerson¶s ³ripe unconscious of evil. the mystic is obliged in the end to give them all up. For James. is not representable by any specific faculty. EMERSON: A COLLECTION OF CRITICAL ESSAYS. Did he know what he meant by Spirit or the ³Over-Soul´? Could he say what he understood by the terms. philosopher. Professor of English at Michigan State University.´ the ³achromatic picture´ his environment presented him. ³Emerson¶s personal history. the base. Law. and all the condensation in the world will not make it look rich. ³like a ministry without an opposition. 32. it must be approached through the abandonment of all. ³of a conscience gasping in the void. philosopher. or Beauty? He could not. the imagination thus prepares its own destructing. This effect was by no means due to the possession on the part of Emerson of the secret of the universe.´ and no surprise that there was ³a certain inadequacy and thinness in (Emerson¶s) enumerations´ and ³quaint animadversions. EMERSON¶S PHILOSOPHY IGNORES THE EVILS OF THE REAL WORLD Michael Lopez. For if the understanding is rejected because it cannot grasp the absolute. and conscience must follow after: for all these are human and relative. 1996. like the ³New England (of) fifty years ago. 31.´ 3. ³enacted a series of experiments in the void.´ It was no surprise. Mysticism will be satisfied only with the absolute. by its very definition. descended again to make authoritative report of it to the world. could be ³condensed into the single word Concord.´ sealed off. so constantly on his lips. must share this reproach.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. vacant²the image is invoked repeatedly in Henry James¶s and Santayana¶s portrayals of Emerson. 1962.wcdebate. panting for sensations. TRANSCENDENTALISM PLACES ITSELF ABOVE ORDINARY HUMAN EXPERIENCE Michael Lopez. that his eyes were ³thickly bandaged´ to all ³sense of the dark. as we have said. its rewards and consolations. the imagination and all its works²art. EMERSON AND POWER. dogma.
and enrolled at the University of Vermont. LIFE AND WORK John Dewey was born in Burlington. Students were herded in and out of classrooms. the young scholar had experienced a wide range of educational models. If. He graduated in 1879. politics and education. the ultimate test of a theory or idea was whether it ³worked´ for ordinary people applying the theory or idea. on October 20. and grow accordingly. There seemed to be different "tracks" for different students. Not surprisingly. and these divisions were often based on students' economic circumstances rather than any useful distinctions. 1859. Burlington possessed paradoxical traits (and in many ways. from the naive provincialism of small town public schools to the progressive possibilities of advanced study in philosophy. In 1894. psychology and pedagogy at the University of Chicago. For Dewey. and received an appointment from the University of Michigan to teach philosophy and psychology. the primacy of collective and community activity over individual reflection. because they have waited upon some power external to themselves and to nature to do the work they are responsible for doing. saw students as valuable in and of themselves. and the belief that humans can progress and improve themselves over time.wcdebate. What makes Dewey uniquely American is his pragmatism. rather than seeing them as defects to be corrected or workers to be trained. 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. John Dewey witnessed the kind of community participation that would inspire his views on society. Maryland. Dewey has influenced famous contemporary thinkers such as Richard Rorty and Donald Davidson in the area of philosophy. Dewey held that transcendent ³truths´ were not as important as the collective experience of ordinary human beings. Dewey was appointed professor of philosophy and chair of the department of philosophy. at the age of twenty. and expected to regurgitate them faithfully. After examining Dewey¶s interesting life. a distinctively American pragmatist philosopher. and taught high school for three years. Dewey enrolled in the philosophy graduate program at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. It was at Chicago where Dewey would begin experimenting with Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. the son of a grocer. taught to memorize proofs and facts and histories. At the same time. He would come to understand that if teachers and administrators believed in students. along with some ideas about how Dewey can be used in value debate. in philosophy. as well as countless teachers and educational theorists. A brief synopsis of some general objections of Dewey follows. it may very well have been his youth in Burlington that inspired that trust. from base "vocational" education to higher forms of learning. Dewey stayed in Burlington after graduating from the public schools. still does): It was both a local intellectual center and a community of simple farming and trade." ²John Dewey INTRODUCTION This essay will explore the life and thought of John Dewey. Volume 9 Page 44 JOHN DEWEY "Men have never fully used [their] powers to advance the good in life. These early teaching experiences no doubt forced Dewey to realize that something was not quite right with the education system in America.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.com . Both of these philosophies stem from particular assumptions such as the vitality of experience and usefulness. he received his PhD. Two years later. most students would take advantage of the opportunities afforded them. Dewey's father owned a general store in the small Vermont community. as some critics have charged. Dewey left public school teaching in favor of exploring the alternatives that might be available. and Dewey grew up listening to local customers at the store discuss politics and culture. 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. In the fall of 1882. From a very early age. By now. Vermont. Dewey possessed an unreasonable utopian trust in communities. I will attempt to explain both the philosophy of pragmatism and Dewey¶s educational philosophy.
and these experiments. Humans. I might be a socialist. although Dewey was no socialist. also have a history of change. This explains why. But unlike existentialists. www.html)." and Dewey replied "If more socialists were like you. In 1904. William James was more concerned about people's personal religious experiences than with the various logical "proofs" for God's existence. Humans may. His writings and experiments enjoyed free reign and institutional encouragement. as part of nature. and least known." in theory or practice. Dewey sees mental reflection as part of the sum of human experience). Like existentialists. However." an effort to clear Soviet revolutionary leader Leon Trotsky of Josef Stalin's charges that Trotsky was a counterrevolutionary sabuteur. who by all accounts represented exactly the kind of "old school" traditionalism Dewey opposed. when we see how strongly Dewey believes in cooperation instead of competition. Dewey believes that what constitutes "human nature" is a history of experience. removed from everyday experience. 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). John Dewey died on June 1. A collection of anti-Stalinist left activists and anti-capitalist figures asked Dewey to chair the commission because.augie. "A thing is its history" for Dewey. both as a race and as individuals. genuine experience. and that history is lived experience (Gordon L. politics. but through a contemplation of the consequences of behaving as if the theory or idea were true.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. engaged to the child by teachers who visibly value the child. "Truth" for pragmatists is not determined in reference to absolute metaphysical principles. Pragmatism holds that there is no such thing as "absolute certainty. Volume 9 Page 45 his progressive theories of education. he was viewed by leftists as fair. No other 20th century American philosopher has enjoyed a greater impact on the day-to-day workings of the system.edu/~mafjerke/dewey. I might be a liberal. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. John Dewey would stay at Columbia for the next 47 years. He believed that shared experiences were always more important than ideological doctrines. To them. Dewey and Trotsky shared a laugh when Trotsky reportedly said "If more liberals were like you. This near-certainty results not from an abstract examination of a theory or idea. Similarly.fred.htm) Perhaps one of the most significant. This will become important later.wcdebate. Dewey left the University of Chicago to become a professor of philosophy at Columbia University in New York City.net/tzaka/deweynew. reach near-certainty about theories or ideas. and sees nature as constantly changing. 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." This exchange speaks volumes about Dewey's philosophy and politics. or appeals to the truth of scripture. impartial. but rather in reference to what "works. he offered a notion that was both politically radical and educationally sound: Education must occur through real. brought national fame to the young man from Burlington. concerning the philosophy of religion. and concerned with social justice. Dewey's role in vindicating Trotsky is important because it shows how his concern for justice and solidarity overrode his differences with the communists. At a gathering of Trotsky's defenders. few philosophers are more misunderstood. Ziniewicz. and despite this impact. of Dewey's achievements came in 1937 when he chaired the "Dewey Commission. He wrote essays and books about epistemology. ethics.org/history/1997/may1997/dewey. Dewey sees humans as part of nature. through experience and reflection (in fact. He influenced teachers and educational theorists all over the world. which did not stop Stalin's agents from assassinating Trotsky in Mexico a short time later (wsws. Dewey's commission cleared Trotsky of all of Stalin's charges. the experiments and the progressive thinking also brought Dewey directly into conflict with University of Chicago President William Rainey Harper." and what coheres with the genuine experience of living subjects. James and Peirce believed that theoretical soundness was not a matter of adherence to some kind of transcendent logic. and he would produce a body of work nearly unmatched in the history of American philosophy. and allow the child to participate in his or her own education. along with his prolific and rigorous essays in philosophy and psychology. and education. 1952.com . Dewey believes that history and experience are collective as well as individual. (http://inst.shtml).
or religious experience. Second. Abstract principles are only valuable insofar as they cohere to our experiences of and in this ever-changing natural world. I may have the idea that procrastination is an undesirable character trait. because my teachers warn me about it. I no longer have sound reason to hold it true. The journey to higher levels of understanding has no end. Dewey supports community ideals because.com . Part of this experience is our membership in a community.but in all cases there is a social context.xrefer. Thus." In fact. They experiment. Dewey is a strong proponent of collectivism and cooperation. propose and oppose. my experience may contradict the advice of my parents and teachers. rigorous meditation on ideas and things. In summary. I could never consider it "true. experience can be active or passive. This explains Dewey's strong support of schools and progressive education.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. that I should adhere to my schedule and not put things off until the last minute. The best political world is one that maximizes the strength of communities. I may have this idea because my parents kept pounding it into my head. My lived experience tells me that it is okay to procrastinate. indeterminate situation into one that is sufficiently unified to enable warranted assertion or coherent action. (http://www. and so on. experience is not (as it was for the empiricists). we achieve more cooperating with others than we achieve on our own.´ In sum. "community ideals" are those ideas and principles that a community develops over time. Moreover. my lived experience is more important than logic or metaphysics in determining the truth or falsity of a claim. his collectivism stems directly from his belief in the universality of experience as the arbiter of knowledge. where we learn from and with other people. What is required in all cases is the application of intelligent inquiry. I hold something true as long as my experience verifies it. as already stated. in legislation that changes some functions of a government . Dewey insisted. as there is no absolute certainty: Dewey's 'instrumentalism' defined inquiry as the transformation of a puzzling. which we'll examine in the next section. I reconsider the original idea. the simple reception and contemplation of external data. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. At that point. It includes long-term. I am part of the world). As long as those things add to my understanding of the way the world works (and remember. my teacher tells me it's obvious I wrote it the night before. then they are valuable parts of the way I know things. and begin to think that procrastination might be bad after all. the self-correcting method of experimentally testing hypotheses created and refined from our previous experience.wcdebate. I may work well under the pressure of the last minute. instrumentalism holds that humans encounter problems and exercise mental inquiry to solve those problems. When my experience no longer verifies it. My experiences include the stories and experiences of other people. mediating both the terms of the initial problem and its solution. For Dewey. until the inevitable time that my last-minute miracle doesn't happen. and includes reflection as well as interaction. and being in turn transformed by the inquiry. and through trial and error reach a higher stage of understanding. pragmatically speaking. My assignment is poorly written. just as available in matters of morals and politics as in matters of physics and chemistry. There are many reasons for this beyond mere progressive political sentiment. Dewey's philosophy is an affirmation of humans as part of an ever-changing natural world. (Ziniewicz. Volume 9 Page 46 For example. This example illustrates two important aspects of Dewey's pragmatism. But unless the "procrastination is bad" idea is validated by my lived experience. Finally. Rather. however. First. to the maximum benefit of all participants.com/entry/551811) Finally. I fail. At least. and the knowledge that is the object of inquiry is. emotional. I may be talented enough to pull off last-minute miracles. test. the example shows that theories and ideas change. It may even include mystical. I do not learn things merely by self-reflection. in imaginative rehearsal of conflicting habits of action. IBID) Many scholars refer to these pragmatic ideas as John Dewey¶s ³instrumentalism. as a result of collective experience. What counts as 'testing' may vary with the 'felt difficulty' in need of resolution-testing may occur in a chemistry laboratory.
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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.
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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.
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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).
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West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Freedom is the equivalent of the reality of growth. but a necessary factor in coming to be effectively that which we have the capacity to grow into. political and moral matters is a gift of God. Volume 9 Page 50 TRUTH IS PROGRESSIVE AND EVOLVING 1. It requires favorable objective conditions. just as the art of painting requires paint. freedom is a resolute will operating in a world in some respects indeterminate. the element of tension or resistance between the two is perhaps the more emphasized. Carry that identity farther. is the most difficult occupation in which man engages. PRODUCING CHANGING CONCEPTIONS OF MORALITY John Dewey. American pragmatist philosopher. In its reality. 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. In obligation.´ are not a hindrance to freedom. the power to think requires even more conscious and consecutive attention. 89. 2. however. If the other arts have to be acquired through ordered apprenticeship. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. It is complete only in its possibilities. Judgment or responsibility depends upon the balance between the subject and the predicate. For these take effect in making preference. and you have freedom. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Make it not merely an identity in conception but in action.wcdebate. and canvas. But the necessary unity between the two is involved. FREEDOM CONSISTS IN RECOGNIZING AND ADAPTING TO CHANGE John Dewey. p. Freedom has too long been thought of as an indeterminate power operating in a closed and ended world. and that the gift operates by a kind of spontaneous combustion. 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. LECTURES ON ETHICS. not abstract knowledge and abstract thought. because open and moving toward a new future. 3. 1968. brushes. American pragmatist philosopher. the explicit thing. The point of simple tension between the two has been passed. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. and resolute. and the emphasis is on the other side of the identity between the two. alert. p. Thinking. but power of vision and reflection. desire and purpose more flexible. No more than any other art is it developed internally. But we appear to assume that ability to think effectively in social. the possible self does not represent a remote. between the natural self and the ideal self. In other words. 1968. SOCIAL CONDITIONS INTERACT WITH INDIVIDUALS. The actual self is not complete as long as it is stated simply as given. 298. We take for granted the necessity of special opportunity and prolonged education to secure ability to think in a special calling.com . like mathematics. American pragmatist philosopher. The most important problem in freedom of thinking is whether social conditions obstruct the development of judgment and insight or effectively promote it. Constant and uniform relations in change and a knowledge of them in ³laws. ADAPTING TO SOCIAL CONDITIONS DETERMINES OUR ABILITY TO THINK WELL John Dewey. 296. Few would perhaps defend this doctrine thus boldly stated. That is the basis of responsibility. p. abstract possibility but is the possibility of the actual self. but upon the whole we act as if that were true. 1991.
Adapted well enough to the localized and fixed conditions of that earlier age. they became hindrances and annoyances as the effects of new methods. things which are good for what they lay claim to in the way of consequences. The question of political and economic freedom is not an addendum or afterthought. which for us monopolizes the title of reality. 1968. But like all other possibilities. perfectly real. our being uniquely what we are and not imitators and parasites of others. FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY REQUIRE MATERIAL EQUALITY 1. and freedom of contract. It is one with our individuality.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. p. For ordinary purposes. Since actual. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. which were embodied in a mass of legal decisions. this possibility has to be actualized. The movement of emancipation expressed itself in principles of liberty in use of property. 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. it is this kind. one which will be as favorable as possible to a consistent and liberal or growing functioning. and are not found in the original and isolated constitution of human nature. the truth and the realness of things are synonymous. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. MORAL AND LEGAL RULES ARE NOT FIXED AND TRANSCENDENT. and the control of the social environment which is furnished by the institution of property²is a pure absurdity. it can only be actualized through interaction with objective conditions. 2. whether moral or psychological. 297-98. BUT CHANGE IN RESPONSE TO HISTORICAL CIRCUMSTANCES John Dewey. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION.´ 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. as facts have demonstrated. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION. existentially speaking. 139. 281. the true kind. American pragmatist philosopher. in the problem of personal freedom.wcdebate. It lacks the hallmark of value. while it is. is not good reality. The notion that men are equally free to act if only the same legal arrangements apply equally to all² irrespective of differences in education. much less a deviation or excrescence. that is for practical purposes. pp. that is. I sum up by saying that the possibility of freedom is deeply grounded in our very beings.com . American pragmatist philosopher. Volume 9 Page 51 THERE ARE NO TRANSCENDENT MORAL TRUTHS 1. FREEDOM REQUIRES THE OBJECTIVE. explains the otherwise paradoxical fact that the slogans of the liberalism of one period often become the bulwarks of reaction in a subsequent era.´ 2. rights and demands are products of interactions. 48-49. The latter merely liberates force and ability as that happens to be distributed by past accidents of history. one absolute and static because exhausted. this identification of truth and ³reality´ is sound and reasonable: rationalistically. the other phenomenal and kept continually on the jump because otherwise its own inherent nothingness would lead to its total annihilation. pp. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. needing to be constantly tested by the way in which they work out in application to concrete situations. and. emerged. which we want or are after. p. We are all children who saw ³really and truly. But the absolutistic logic of rigid syllogistic forms infected these ideas. Since it is a certain kind of object which we want. teleologically. Failure to recognize that general legal rules and principles are working hypotheses. American pragmatist philosopher. MATERIAL MEANS TO ATTAIN CHOICE John Dewey. effective. 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. 1968. it leads to the notion of the duplicate versions of reality. mere elimination of obstructions is not enough. in command of capital. Since it is only genuine and sincere things. Pragmatically. use of coal and steam. ABSTRACT FREEDOM IS NOT ENOUGH: WE NEED THE MATERIAL AND ECONOMIC MEANS TO BE FREE John Dewey. American pragmatist philosopher. 1968. morally they alone are ³real. VALUES ARE DEPENDENT UPON REAL WORLD CONSEQUENCES AND CIRCUMSTANCES John Dewey. like all others.
´ A teacher is not just a leader in a game. DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY HAS BEEN DISPROVEN BY 20TH CENTURY HISTORY George Novack. professor of the philosophy of education at the University of London. Dewey was impressed. 256. Marxist philosopher and activist. 1975. 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. is also unsatisfactory. at least in broad outline. Their perplexity and powerlessness was first exhibited in the First World War. and he or she is meant to be. to some extent. Marxist philosopher and activist. p. the growth and outbreak of these upheavals. and thereby to have helped influence the course of events in a progressive direction. we are then confronted with current tensions underlying the question of how much ³participation´ is compatible with the freedom and authority of the teacher. However. The most it can offer is a reasonable assumption or hopeful expectation that this way may be better than that. But he did not ask the questions ³which home?´ and ³which local community?´. DEWEY¶S EDUCATIONAL THEORIES IGNORED SOCIAL CONDITIONS R. some suggestion of participation in decisionmaking. for sociologists have catalogued the vast disparities that exist between homes in this respect. 114. Deweyism has been caught off guard and overwhelmed by the sweep of events.S. 1977. p. This disparity between teacher and taught²especially in the primary school²makes talk of ³democracy in education´ problematic. like a football captain.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. who is society¶s agent for the transmission and development of its cultural heritage. an authority on some aspect of the culture. as by Dewey. Peters. should have done no less. 1975. 2. for it slurs over the dualism between the teacher¶s position as an authority and the legitimate demand for ³participation. If ³democracy´ is to include. 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.´ This led him to oversimplify the dualism between what he called ³internal conditions´ and what is the result of social influences. 115. the record shows that at every critical turn of American history in the twentieth century. as it usually does. Certainly a philosophy like instrumentalism. so moral judgments have no verifiable value or weight in advance of their results in action. PRAGMATISM VERSUS MARXISM. unless ³democracy´ is watered down to mean just multiplying shared experiences and openness of communication. to have prepared and equipped people to cope with them. 251. PRAGMATISM VERSUS MARXISM. 1977. Dewey¶s theory of ethics suffers from the same faults as his theory of knowledge. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Instead of playing a directing role. it has been duplicated in every serious crisis convulsing the United States since that time. Peters. as I have reiterated. JOHN DEWEY RECONSIDERED. JOHN DEWEY RECONSIDERED. but pupils come to a teacher because they are ignorant.wcdebate. professor of the philosophy of education at the University of London. Volume 9 Page 52 DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY IS GENERALLY REMOVED FROM REALITY 1. with a too limited view of what he called ³the social medium. Dewey¶s treatment of the psychological principle was equally unsatisfactory. DEWEY¶S MORAL PHILOSOPHY HAS NO OBJECTIVE BASIS George Novack. without examining the requisite objective grounds for the hypothetical belief. p. In a game most of the participants know how to play. Any philosophy which had not lost contact with the realities of social life should have been able to foresee. DEWEY¶S PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION IS FLAWED 1. its adherents have been towed along in the wake of the more aggressive and dominant forces of plutocratic reaction. DEWEY FAILS SYNTHESIZE THE TEACHER¶S ROLES AS PARTICIPANT AND AUTHORITY R.com . p. for it combined a conception of the child. which claims to be so realistic and practical. to have interpreted their meaning.S. Dewey¶s view of the teacher. which was almost as idealistic as his conception of democracy. Just as ideas have no validity before all the returns are in but must be tested afresh in each instance.
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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. and absolutely impartial adjustment of all colonial claims. V.com . so far as possible. Absolute freedom of navigation upon the seas. after which there shall be no private international understandings of any kind but diplomacy shall proceed always frankly and in the public view. It is that the world be made fit and safe to live in. be assured of justice and fair dealing by the other peoples of the world as against force and selfish aggression. a new Republican Congress in the United States rejected the peace negotiated under Wilson. A separate peace had to be negotiated between the United States and Germany. In fact. FOURTEEN POINTS The best single summary of Woodrow Wilson¶s political philosophy came in his Fourteen Points Address to Congress. The prime points of this neoliberal order include free trade (absolute freedom of navigation. therefore. However. unilaterist school of ³diplomacy.´ That doesn¶t mean. All the peoples of the world are in effect partners in this interest. Open covenants of peace. There. the removal of all economic barriers to trade. skeptical of the League of Nations. alike in peace and in war. Volume 9 Page 56 THE IDEAS OF WOODROW WILSON In 1919. like our own. openly arrived at.one largely supported by both political parties in the United States. How to establish justice? The first five points hold up remarkably well in today¶s political climate. Still. determine its own institutions. 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.he was awarded the 1919 Nobel Peace Prize. and particularly that it be made safe for every peace-loving nation which.wcdebate. A free. 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. Adequate guarantees given and taken that national armaments will be reduced to the lowest point consistent with domestic safety. wishes to live its own life. 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. II. the Europeans considered Wilson a key factor in making peace -. The removal. III. What we demand in this war. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. an international regime managing trade. that the ideas behind the league have lost their relevance. 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.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.´ Wilson said.´ One can see in these first several points the framework for establishing what we would call today a ³neoliberal´ economic order -. we see the ideas he held most dear in both promotion of peace and economic justice. open-minded. Why was the peace negotiated by Wilson so controversial at home? Many of his ideas were quite ahead of their time. is nothing peculiar to ourselves. ³I. IV. and for our own part we see very clearly that unless justice be done to others it will not be done to us. they might have been written after the Gulf War by George Bush or Bill Clinton. outside territorial waters. where he promoted his plan for peace in Europe. including the internationalist tendencies favoring collective security that are even today rejected by many Republicans who favor the big-stick. Before presenting the fourteen points themselves. however.
etc. It is better. for example). Take the example of Latin America. this vision is what¶s behind today¶s U. and work together toward common goals. why blunt the focus of American foreign policy by taking on multiple ³humanitarian´ missions? This kind of misguided internationalism. 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. including evacuation of conquered lands. One scholar on inter-American affairs. and established the progressive income tax. 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. preferring to think of Wilson as a meddlesome tinkerer who bumbled into trouble by trying to do too much good overseas. Volume 9 Page 57 View this in the context of his domestic economic policy: Wilson established the Federal Reserve Bank.com .a collective body for the nations of the world to gather and discuss problems. Not even the mainstream right takes him seriously. he sought to promote trade as a path to peace. Lowenthal. they would argue. 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. Some see him as a man who naively believed one powerful country could bring peace to the world. These thinkers claim that it¶s a fallacy to presume we can effectively promote those institutions worldwide. solve disputes. and arguably the one with the most historic staying power: ³XIV. Abraham F. stabilized the economy with numerous reforms that foreshadowed big-government liberalism. to examine the policies Wilson favored rather than muddy the water with simple labels like ³idealism. it¶s overly simplistic to say that only the right favors this line of analysis. The right has a somewhat different slant. Wilson is important to understand as a precursor to today¶s modern liberal politicians. As the far-right author David Horowitz wrote this February: (Of course. and even if we can.´ which mean different things to different people. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. But that¶s another story. groups like the Cato institute toe a more isolationist line.wcdebate.´ As we¶ve talked about. is Wilson¶s legacy.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. where Wilson once refused to acknowledge non-democratic governments. was quoted in a Cato publication as concluding: Of course. given the myriad factors at play in the formation of one¶s thinking. Wilson would argue that promoting ³justice´ (through institutions like American democracy) abroad is the best way to get peace. the establishment of an independent Polish state.) From another right-wing perspective. Many left-wing thinkers have taken a similar angle. As long as the United States can protect itself with the most powerful military in the world. the nation-building activities have bad tradeoffs. DEBATE APPLICATION Motives are a difficult thing to ascertain in any human being. It is possible. Others see him as a man who wanted to bring ³peace´ to rich nations and rich men living within them.N. This shows that he believed in government as a positive force for change in economics as in foreign policy. a ³consensus´ to Horowitz means something different than what it does to the rest of the world. then. -. both in domestic and foreign policy. But the fourteenth point was the most controversial to the Republican Congress Wilson faced at home. they argue. but made more of these policies¶ effects on the nations in question rather than the impact they had on the United States. to see Wilson at once as overly idealistic and overly cynical. Overseas. in my estimation. while maintaining other kinds of dominance (economic. His ideas have impacted today¶s Democratic party in at least two major ways.
despite his initial reluctance to get involved in World War I.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. Foreign policy: Wilson.wcdebate.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Overseas. 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. he fell ill and never fully recovered. CONCLUSION: THE LEGACY OF WOODROW WILSON When Wilson was president. was interventionist by nature.C. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. as Wilsonian in nature -. He passed the Family Leave Act as a domestic reform to marginally benefit working Americans while vigorously pursuing free trade agreements abroad. After this effort. He believed the government should take an active role in stimulating the economy through establishing necessary regulations at home. his dogged pursuit of the Versailles Treaty necessitated traveling 8.com . for example. D. One can see Bill Clinton¶s economic policy¶s roots in Wilson. For these reasons. Volume 9 Page 58 Economic policy: unlike his Republican successors such as Calvin Coolidge. James M. Wilson retired to Washington. Since Wilson was unable to campaign for the presidency. 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.. where he died in 1924.000 miles by rail around the country. Harding in 1920. it is possible to see both Bush¶s and Clinton¶s attacks on Iraq. either).
2. Professor Emeritus of History at Boston University. Mark. available online at http://www. Z MAGAZINE NETWORK DAILY COMMENTARY. 2000. accessed April 22. Princeton University Press. THE NEW FREEDOM. Gilderhus. Josephus. Norman Gordon. WOODROW WILSON: A PENGUIN LIFE. TO END ALL WARS: WOODROW WILSON AND THE QUEST FOR A NEW WORLD ORDER. Herbert.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. Z MAGAZINE. WOODROW WILSON: A LIFE FOR WORLD PEACE. Addison-Wesley Pub Co.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. Cambridge University Press. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit. 2002. Political Studies Department. November 1994. 2000. Volume 9 Page 59 BIBLIOGRAPHY Adar. 1998 Chomsky. http://web. Rhodes University. 1995 Kuehl. 2002. 1990 AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. Greenwood Publishing Group. Howard. John Morton. 2.htm. THE LIFE OF WOODROW WILSON. WOODROW WILSON AND WORLD POLITICS. accessed May 1. May 7. 10. Oxford University Press.org/Sustainers/content/2000-05/07zinn. Noam. accessed April 22. PAN AMERICAN VISIONS: WOODROW WILSON AND THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE. 1920-1939. 1991 Zinn. 1980 Link. 1956 Rowen. 1997 Levin. 1965 Link.com . CAMPAIGNS FOR PROGRESSIVISM AND PEACE. Korwa G. 1913-1921. University of California Press. KEEPING THE COVENANT: AMERICAN INTERNATIONALISTS AND THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS. Arthur. University of Arizona Press. 1971. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.htm.ufl. South Africa.html. Louis. PBS documentary.zmag. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. Lloyd. p. http://www. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology.africa. 1986 Knock. 1998. Daniels. Auchincloss. AMERICA'S RESPONSE TO WAR AND REVOLUTION. 2001. Thomas. Vol. WOODROW WILSON AND THE AMERICAN DIPLOMATIC TRADITION: THE TREATY FIGHT IN PERSPECTIVE. Princeton University Press. WOODROW WILSON AND THE POLITICS OF MORALITY.wcdebate.pbs. Kent State University Press. Viking Press. Arthur.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 2002. Ambrosius. No. Warren and Lynne Dunn. Blum. Princeton University Press.
In the spirit of Wilsonianism.could well prove to be the decisive factor between the forces of freedom and international communism". with Cold War prism taking a centre stage. such concerns were evident even prior to much of Africa's independence. Vol.html. 4. 2001. 2002. p. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. 3. p. 2001. WILSON¶S LEGACY INCLUDES MANY PROGRESSIVE AGENDAS Ira Katznelson. Political Studies Department. accessed May 1. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. np.africa. Rhodes University.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. np. 2002.com . South Africa. available online at http://www. some of which had to wait a long time to come back. 2.html. WILSON¶S CONCEPTS OF POWER AND SOCIAL JUSTICE ARE STILL USEFUL John M. I see Wilson's life as tragic in the sense that he obviously lost on the League. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. Indeed. BUT THE COLD WAR. http://web.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. p. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit.pbs. 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. Historian. np. accessed May 1. 2002. THAT PROMOTED COLONIALISM Korwa G. and women¶s suffrage. the US welcomed decolonization and independence in Africa in the 1960s. available online at http://www. Wilson matters as the person who led the United States into global geopolitics. PBS documentary. IT WASN¶T WILSONIANISM. 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.ufl. 2. Mulder.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. 2. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.html. After his visit to Africa. PBS documentary. The direct election of United States senators. prohibition. Wilson matters as the first modern president. Vice-President Nixon in his report to Eisenhower explained that "the course of Africa's development.. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. Historian. The period of his presidency was a period therefore of extraordinary new assertion of governmental capacity in the United States. 2002. Volume 9 Page 60 WILSON PROMOTED PROGRESSIVE SOCIAL AGENDAS 1. np. accessed May 1. Adar. No. emerging American national interests became defined in terms of combatting communism in Africa and other parts of the world. 2001. Wilson matters as someone who followed a progressive political agenda and who established a model for subsequent possibilities.htm. 1998. PBS documentary. accessed April 22. Wilson's also important as the president who presided over a number of major constitutional changes. available online at http://www..pbs. WILSON SUPPORTED MANY PROGRESSIVE AGENDAS Ira Katznelson. as well as presidential ambition.wcdebate. p. However.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.
WILSON¶S IDEAS HELP CONTROL POTENTIAL INTERNATIONAL ANARCHY John Morton Blum. http://web. 2. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. 4.pbs. Adar. p. 2. WILSONIAN THINKING HELPED PAVE THE WAY FOR DECOLONIZATION OF AFRICA Korwa G. This idealism culminated in the formation of the League of Nations in 1919.wcdebate. accessed April 22.ufl. In this respect. The UN system tangibly paved the way for the process of decolonization in Africa through the UN General Assembly resolutions. Rhodes University.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. he argued. Wilsonianism not only challenged dictatorial and authoritarian systems worldwide but it also helped oppressed people become aware of their rights. In his view. 2001. No. Vol. I see it at least more in terms of a process than I do in terms of a product. Moreover. 2002. 2. 2001. np. 2002. 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. 2. South Africa.ufl. 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. Rhodes University. This. and legitimacy of power held the key to both international peace and the emancipation of humanity from injustice.html. It was within this philosophical context that he advocated for the need to make the world safe for democracy. p. One of the central concerns at the time was how to avoid war and conflict in general. Although the United States did not become a contracting party to the League. np. 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. What Wilson was capable of was as a president. 1998. AND HAD A GLOBAL IMPACT Korwa G. 2. to involve himself in great affairs and to try to find ways in which to work out the problems created by those great affairs. available online at http://www. accessed April 22. PBS documentary. South Africa. the realization of individual freedom. For the colonized peoples of Africa. Political Studies Department. would promote America's long term interests. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. Wilsonianism was not only internationalised but also institutionalised. Wilsonianism emerged as a distinct policy philosophy at the end of the First World War. Social and Cultural Rights. he was never evasive in that way. WILSONIAN PHILOSOPHY HELPED CREATE THE U. Such thinking would go on to inform the founding fathers of the United Nations. Historian. No. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. np. PBS documentary.africa. Historian. Wilsonianism had a global impact. Wilson¶s ideas were victorious even if his policies weren¶t.N. p. with African countries which were independent at the time as well as India and the socialist countries taking the lead. available online at http://www. accessed May 1. 2002. Adar. If one wants to talk about Wilson¶s legacy. 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.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. p.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. For Wilson. np. Volume 9 Page 61 WILSONIAN THOUGHT HELPED CREATE INTERNATIONAL PEACE 1. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 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.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. WILSON¶S IDEAS WERE VICTORIOUS EVEN THOUGH HIS POLICIES WEREN¶T Jay Winter. Political Studies Department. 3. Thus. 2002. The idea of universal morality was central for Wilson. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit.africa.html.pbs. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. http://web. limited government. 1998.htm. democracy and human rights (or self-determination in general) was equated with the absence of colonialism. Vol. 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.com . accessed May 1.htm.
He took a kind of an American liberalism and essentially tried to create a form of world institutions: self-determination. and Canada. it will be under conditions designed to discredit him and further demoralize those who hoped that democracy might be tolerated in Haiti.pbs. Martin observed." Like many other mindless propaganda slogans. the one partial exception to the array of horror chambers that Washington has maintained in the region.N. 2001. unlike the U. trusting that "the United States. witness the case of Guatemala. on a par with "Wilsonian idealism.S. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They were proven right.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. Washington director of the Inter-American dialogue. rejecting Aristide's plea to reduce them along lines that had proven successful in Costa Rica. or by its traditional master. The military and police forces were established during Woodrow Wilson's invasion as an instrument to control the population. The generals continued their resistance to a diplomatic settlement. WILSON¶S ³IDEALISM´ CONTINUES TO JUSTIFY HORRIBLE TRAGEDIES IN HAITI Noam Chomsky. despite its rhetoric of democracy.com . That is to continue. He still keeps his allegiance to the general population and their organizations -. The Europeans knew that Wilson¶s principles had problems. accessed May 1."Aristide's unwillingness to "broaden the political base" has become a kind of mantra. has taught people to abandon hope for freedom and democracy. and the world did not want the American principles. Historian. Father Aristide resisted having so many former soldiers in the police force. p. To evaluate what lies ahead. movement from authoritarianism to democracy tends to reflect a more broadly based consensus than is currently the case in Haiti. Ian Martin. Aristide has been unwilling to shift power to the "enlightened" sectors of foreign and domestic Civil Society and their security forces.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Z MAGAZINE." It is true enough that from the southern cone to Central America and the Caribbean.wcdebate. While Aristide was elected by a two-thirds majority. It seems to me that Wilson failed because he tried to apply American principles to the world. If he is. recognized that the U. the head of the OAS/UN mission through December 1993. the phrase conceals a grain of truth. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. 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. It hasn't been easy. The Europeans knew this. 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. Consider Peter Hakim. was ambivalent about that power shift" to popular elements represented by Aristide. 2002. we should look carefully at the plans for the security forces and the economy." so the New York Times reported on the eve of the invasion. France. available online at http://www. 2. much of it organized right where Hakim speaks.. Volume 9 Page 62 WILSON SUPPORTED AMERICAN COLONIALISM AND IMPERIALISM 1. As discussed here in July. the consensus is "broadly based" in the sense that sustained terror and degradation. domestic and foreign.S. well-informed about the hemisphere and far from a ranting ideologue. and to accept the rule of private power. 10.who could teach some lessons to their kindly tutors about what was meant by "democracy" in days when the term was still taken seriously. This was one of the successes of the educational program designed for the "doctrinaire monomaniac. Whether Aristide is allowed to return in some fashion is anyone's guess at the time of writing. The Haitian military. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Hakim observes. "in most Latin American countries. just now attaining the proper broad consensus after many years of education. Hakim also surely knows the nature of the "consensus" at home. It is intriguing to watch the process at work. np. WILSON FAILED BECAUSE HE TRIED TO APPLY AMERICAN PRINCIPLES TO THE WORLD Walter LaFeber. was its friend and protector. "At first. p. revealed by the belief of half the population that the political system is so rotten that both parties should be disbanded. PBS documentary.html. As the matter is now rephrased. aid and training for that purpose since. November 1994. but Administration officials said they persuaded him to accept them. reported in Foreign Policy that negotiations had stalled because of Washington's insistence on maintaining the power of the security forces. and have been kept in power by U. open trade.
p.org/wgbh/amex/wilson/sfeature/sf_legacy. He saw democracy as a tool for creating harmony. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Vol. Professor Emeritus of History at Boston University. Z MAGAZINE NETWORK DAILY COMMENTARY. "For two centuries. leaving concerns for democracy and human rights aside. or Helen Keller. Volume 9 Page 63 WILSON¶S SOCIAL IDEAS WEREN¶T NOT PROGRESSIVE. With the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War. As for Woodrow Wilson. and put anti-war protesters in prison. His greatest contradiction from my point of view. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY. He wasn¶t always comfortable with the fact that democracy is a noisy and messy business. 3. WILSON¶S IDEAS JUSTIFY VICIOUS COLONIALISM Noam Chomsky. Professor of Linguistics at the Massachussets Institute of Technology. accessed May 1. np. 2002. available online at http://www. np.com . "Like the French in the 19th century. also occupying an important place in the pantheon of American liberalism. Backers of President Aristide. shouldn't we remind his admirers that he insisted on racial segregation in federal buildings. South Africa.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. themes within the rhetoric of American foreign policy toward Africa since the end of World War II. but it is a novelty to see Napoleon's invasion. however. p. who reviewed the lessons of history. the noise of democracy. brought our country into the hell of World War I. who fearlessly spoke out against the war? 3." he wrote. In the current era. accessed April 22.html. 10. very unsympathetic with and having very little patience for the messiness of democracy.pbs. portrayed in the same light. PBS documentary. "political opponents in Haiti have routinely slaughtered each other. the American forces who are trying to impose a new order will confront a complex and violent society with no history of democracy. The principles of democracy and human rights have been persistent. is that his rhetoric was pro-democratic. The linking of such Wilsonian precepts with foreign policy practice. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit.ufl. but his behavior was often very paternalistic. that he bombarded the Mexican coast. 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. followers of General Cedras and the former Tontons Macoute retain their homicidal tendencies. Adar.wcdebate. Should we not bring forward as a national hero Emma Goldman.africa. 2. 2002. 2000. WILSONIAN POLICIES AREN¶T IDEALISTIC: JUST THE SAME OLD REALPOLITIK Korwa G. "Perspective" on what is taking place was provided in the New York Times by R. US policy makers consistently followed the dictates of realpolitik in the era of the Cold War. May 7.htm. http://web. conditions are now in place for the tangible and coherent pursuit of an American foreign policy based on democracy and human rights.org/Sustainers/content/2000-05/07zinn.htm. accessed April 22. Rhodes University. np. 2002. BUT REPRESSIVE 1. one of those Wilson sent to prison. 2. 2001. if at times secondary.which the homicidal maniacs in the slums have cleverly concealed. Historian AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: WOODROW WILSON. Political Studies Department. p. Z MAGAZINE. one of the most hideous crimes of an era not known for its gentleness. WILSON¶S RHETORIC WAS PRO-DEMOCRATIC. WILSON¶S PHILOSOPHY INCLUDED RACISM AND WAR-MONGERING Howard Zinn. 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. the question emerges as to the resonance of such Wilsonian principles in US foreign policy towards Africa. 2. 1998. W. civilized mediation. very controlling. like the Marines who occupied Haiti from 1915 to 1934. BUT HIS SOCIAL POLICIES WEREN¶T Victoria Bissell Brown. to say nothing about their weapons" -. No. sent an occupation army into Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Apple. has been an altogether different story.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. http://www. November 1994.zmag.
(³But I didn¶t know FDR was Jewish!´ you say. Another element is that most American of traits. Leuchtenburg. So what¶s up with the bitterness? Well.but no one accused the far right of being rocket scientists. If one can inspire vitriol of this nature from both sides of the American political spectrum." (Told you so about the anti-Semitism).) We¶ll discuss how that applies in a bit. Volume 9 Page 64 FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT Of all the former presidents the United States has seen leave office in the past 100 years. at the Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University. Even today. The New Deal included massive government spending to create jobs and the creation of the Civilian Conservation Corps. Debilitated by a youthful bout with polio. anyway. it is certainly remarkable that the enmity exists more than two generations later in this country. Why the hatred from the right wing? After all.according to Gentile standards. Historians. That¶s not to say the left doesn¶t have problems with FDR. except Werner von Braun." according to Communist leader Earl Browder. FDR is feted by liberals and reviled by conservatives to this day -. He wasn¶t -. though. This isn¶t to say that there aren¶t legitimate criticisms of FDR. I say with a smirk.and academic articles from scholars and think tank employees slathering over why the New Deal was unconstitutional. In fact. All this should tell you that Roosevelt had a monumental impact on American life. Roosevelt isn¶t just the man who pulled the country out of the Great Depression. but we¶ll get to that below. one has doubtless done something right. 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 -. ROOSEVELT¶S IMPORTANCE As I said above. the majority of it is due to the success of FDR¶s liberal social programs. The architect of the New Deal. It also says something about the limits of mainstream liberalism. which tells you we have a ways to go yet in this country. the charming and affable voice behind the Fireside Chats.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. the first president to truly take his case directly to the people. He was elected to an unprecedented four terms. from right to left to centrist. Only recently has there been mass outcry about this mass violation of human rights. perhaps none (even including Richard Nixon or Bill Clinton) has inspired such virulent criticism and simultaneously vociferous defense as Franklin Delano Roosevelt. William E. anti-Semitism. of course -. He passed important legislation.com .but there are certainly things we can all now (hopefully) agree on as grievous acts on FDR¶s part. which proved that private industry isn¶t the only way to create jobs. said that ³The presidency as we know it today begins with Franklin Delano Roosevelt. 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. popularly known as FDR. he was perhaps the living embodiment of that ³rugged individualism´ and ³pulling yourself up by your bootstraps´ stuff that conservatives like to bluster about. There¶s no way to anger a political opponent than by passing popular and effective legislation.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. agree on this. and it happened 70 years ago. What is legitimate depends on what side of the political discourse you come down on. and was generally beloved by the public.wcdebate. while American fascist William Dudley Pelley called him the "lowest form of human worm . even people that hate Roosevelt acknowledge his importance. Whatever the roots of the anti-FDR sentiment. The best example: the massive internment of Japanese Americans in concentration camps. It wasn¶t.not a bad record for a man who left office nearly 70 years ago. FDR nevertheless rose to great heights as a statesman. a bone thrown to the masses who demanded an alternative to the capitalism that was starving them in droves (in their view). Many saw the New Deal as a cop-out. but the threat of a good example of liberalism is still pretty threatening to these people.
These are the simple. The enjoyment of the fruits of scientific progress in a wider and constantly rising standard of living. Unlike most every other president. For there is nothing mysterious about the foundations of a healthy and strong democracy. and perhaps they are right. 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. Jobs for those who can work. Many believe that today¶s so-called ³imperial presidency´ -. Security for those who need it. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. In order to understand these.´ This did not stop some of his contemporaries from referring to FDR as "that megalomaniac cripple in the White House. This is not quite true. He figured if America as we knew it was to survive intact. 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.com .began with FDR and his legislative ideas. surpassed only by the legendary Abraham Lincoln. some of that sentiment stems from the same root. or at the very least an advocate of disarmament. too.wcdebate. The right see him as having betrayed capitalism for a more socialist model. In his famour ³Four Freedoms´ speech. They are: Equality of opportunity for youth and for others. If you¶re starving. The thing they both agree on is that a fundamental shift occurred during his time in office. Before. as we will see later. 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." But believe it or not. as failing to meet the needs of the public. This is also why the right sees him as a betrayer of unfettered capitalism -.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. the government had no rhetorical or actual commitment to the average working person.where significantly more power rests in the hands of the executive branch -. FDR recognized this. foregoing more revolutionary change for institutional reform. sewing clothes for 16 hours a day for pennies a day (due to no child labor laws and no minimum wage). and you have to put your 10-year-old to work in a factory. The ending of special privilege for the few. from his leadership in World War II to his economic ideas to his intangible inspirational qualities. Volume 9 Page 65 There are many reasons for this. someone had to do something fast to preserve the positive aspects of the old order. The inner and abiding straight of our economic and political systems is dependent upon the degree to which they fulfill these expectations.and perhaps they are right. it is important to understand the ideology behind them. the basic things that must never be lost sight of in the turmoil and unbelievable complexity of our modern world. He also thought there were certain fundamental rights to which humans were entitled. The basic things expected by our people of their political and economic systems are simple. Leuchtenberg continued. This is why the left sees Roosevelt as a betrayer of social revolution. someone making a union-won family wage who can provide for his or her family and even be a little bit comfortable. FDR saw the economic system of the early 20th century as too harsh. The preservation of civil liberties for all. you¶re a lot more susceptible to someone preaching overthrow of the existing system than. he included economic rights in that list. Perhaps the best manifestation of these ideas came from the man himself. The four freedoms which give the famous speech its name are listed here: One would think that this made FDR a pacifist. ROOSEVELT¶S IDEAS Much is made of Roosevelt¶s social and economic reforms. say.
and income supplements for dependent children in single-parent families. Nope. Volume 9 Page 66 In January 1935. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and the blind are not beneficent ideas designed to make the functioning of government and economy more humane. and who continued to adopt laissez-faire policies that deepened the depression until 1932. were "a watershed in economic policy and in economic thinking" (p. finance. the expanded federal regulation of agriculture. He had his own ideas -. Cradle to the grave . industry. the Securities and Exchange Commission. shouldn't be a member of the social security system. Social Security. He explained his rationale in the Four Freedoms speech: ECONOMIC POLICY: THE CRITICS As I mentioned. Sure. unemployment insurance. the National Labor Relations Board." You may have heard this ³cradle to the grave´ rhetoric before. and the blind.´ This imprecise term covers a variety of reforms that constitute a safety net for the poor and otherwise disadvantaged. the Social Security Administration. the establishment of a legal minimum wage. the conservative economic theorist. the Rural Utility Service (formerly the Rural Electrification Administration).but he was more a "laboratory affording economists an opportunity to make hands-on contact with the world of events" (p. ³with few exceptions. All of these were first established under Franklin Roosevelt.com . to him. He points to such agencies as the Export-Import Bank. no one looms larger than FDR. The reason was not that Roosevelt was revolutionary economic thinker himself -. but no one heard it from the President before then. The FDR years. the FDR experimentation resulted in an "Americanized version of Keynesian macroeconomics" which relied on government stimulation of private industry. Higgs breaks out the organizational chart of the federal government.wcdebate. unemployment insurance and aid to families with dependent children. the establishment of a legal minimum wage. the Farm Credit Administration. he was a man with certain values (expressed above) that was willing to listen to professional economists about how to achieve those values.Barber says he was "an uncompromising champion of consumer sovereignty" -. As evidence. and the creation of Social Security with its old-age pensions. who was president when the Great Depression started in 1929. pensions for the elderly. He also promoted expanded federal regulation of agriculture. the physically handicapped. historians have taken a positive view of the New Deal´ -. the Rural Development Administration (formerly the Farmers Home Administration).instead.but. FDR is best known for promoting what is known as ³the welfare state. Things we take for granted today include: relief programs for the unemployed. finance.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. he doesn¶t mention that Kershner was a paranoid. FDR emphasized his commitment to social security this way: "I see no reason why every child. the aged poor. 3). One of them is Robert Higgs. pathological anti-communist who saw such things as laws against child labor as a sign of the creeping red tide. wrote William Barber in his book DESIGN WITHOUT DISORDER. who admits that ³In the construction of the American regulatory and welfare state. It¶s also pretty interesting how he skips over free-market conservative Herbert Hoover. and labor relations to prevent market failures and offer governmental support of certain businesses in danger of failure. from the day he is born. Higgs and the like paint FDR as a big-government liberal who created federal agencies for their own sake and no other.´ He does not say this as a compliment. and labor relations. 2). industry. the Federal Housing Administration. these policies are a power grab by liberal economists! Of course.from the cradle to the grave they ought to be in a social insurance system. the physically handicapped. when voters unceremoniously dumped him in favor of FDR. and was arguing in the 1950s and 1960s along with Joe McCarthy that Communists were infiltrating the American government. Higgs writes. such programs as massive relief programs for the unemployed. Aside from the governmental influx of capital to boost the economy. the aged poor. Specifically. the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. there are lots of people that won¶t let 70-year-old policies go.
who praised Hitler and continued to trade with Nazi Germany AFTER World War II began). which consigned over 100. was upheld by the Supreme Court and stands a valid legal precedent to this day. financing. this was not the case. United States.000 loyal Americans of Japanese descent to prison camps for years. This nonsense about Roosevelt and about Jews continues to this day among the racist right. regulating.com .)´ Sometimes. Korematsu v. who didn¶t see the murder of European Jews as any of out business. was at war with them. isn¶t it a good rather than a bad thing that farmers get subsidies that help family farms stay afloat. including Henry Ford. ³Each in its own fashion. but that¶s the way it is. by the way. too. Sadly. FDR signed Executive Order 9066. insuring. No act of espionage by any Japanese American was ever proven.´ and called his policies ³the Jew Deal. his wife ran off with a traveling salesman. this much is undeniable. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. being a victim of race-baiting himself. 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. No similar policies were enacted for Americans of German or Italian descent. And what about all those that got their jollies in hating Roosevelt? My favorite story is this one. the Export-Import Bank.´ playing to racist notions of wealthy Jews running the government. One would think. including Holocaust deniers like David Irving and his ilk. and one can certainly debate about the impacts of some of them. Charming. William J. Considering that this made him alone not only among the political leaders of the world. FDR was the first (and. so even (gasp!) the middle class and below can attend universities. told by William E. but virtually alone among prominent Americans (many of whom. Even if you¶ve got a problem with. though the U. say. 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.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 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. The vast majority of it was never returned.wcdebate. the ONLY) political leader to stand against Hitler from the very beginning. Famously. It also helps to explain the hatred of FDR by the anti-Semitic right. that students have their college loans federally provided. and thereby diverting resources from the uses most valued by consumers. The nutty right spread rumors that Roosevelt¶s real name was ³Rosenfeld. (Which he was there. The legal precedent that justified this vile act. Their property was seized. ³interferes with the effective operation of the free market. vanden Heuvel argues. CONCLUSION FDR might be the most important president of the 20th century. narratives end with perfect poetic justice.S. To his credit. 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. By subsidizing. Leuchtenberg: ³In Kansas a man went down into his cyclone cellar and announced he would not emerge until Roosevelt was out of office.´ he writes. FDR would have seen the folly in his most shameful act of the war. it certainly serves as a major mark in Roosevelt¶s favor. Love him or give in to insane and illogical hatred of him. vanden Heuvel has noted. only sometimes.´ Regardless of how one feels about each of these individual agencies. each renders the economy less productive than it could be-and all in the service of one special interest or another.
htm. DETERRING DEMOCRACY.com . 2002.´ Jan.net/bookreviews/library/0024.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3.eh. accessed May 5. Franklin Delano. Jr. 2002.NET BOOK REVIEW . ROOSEVELT AND AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY. Hugh Gregory. September 1998. Warren F.wcdebate. Noam. accessed May 1. 1991. Oxford University Press. 2002.washingtonpost. Mead and Company Publishers.shtml. http://www. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. 1986. 1970.. Department of History. FRANKLIN D.org/chat/chat03. 1992. University of Mississippi .org/wgbh/amex/presidents/nf/resource/fdr/primdocs/socsecspeech.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. July 1997.pbs. 1979. Michael V. 2002. 1935. THE FREEMAN. 2002. Kenneth S.feri. THE COMING OF THE NEW DEAL. http://www. 17. Arthur M. Franklin Delano. http://newdeal.independent. THE JUGGLER: FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT AS WARTIME STATESMAN. http://www. Boston: South End Press. William E. http://www.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs. Gallagher. 1959. FDR'S SPLENDID DECEPTION. Davis. Roosevelt. accessed May 9.html. accessed May 02. 1932-1945. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.1987. ROOSEVELT: THE SOLDIER OF FREEDOM. Chomsky. Higgs. Namorato. 1985.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Volume 9 Page 68 BIBLIOGRAPHY Burns. Robert. Leuchtenburg. Schlesinger. accessed May 10. July 24. New York: Dodd.html. ³Purposes and Foundations of the Recovery (Fireside Chat)´. Robert. 1933. EH. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy.htm. ³A Message to the Congress on Social Security. Dallek. Princeton: Princeton University Press. New York: Random House Publishing. James MacGregor. Kimball. Roosevelt.ECONOMIC HISTORY. FDR: THE NEW DEAL YEARS 1933-1937.
gone. and the ultimate impact these economic thinkers had on long-term federal economic policy." 3. http://www. was "an uncompromising champion of consumer sovereignty" (p. 2002.. p. in short. Overnight. FDR TRANSFORMED THE NATION¶S ECONOMIC OUTLOOK William E.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. FDR WAS KEY TO SOCIAL JUSTICE FOR THE DISADVANTAGED William E. Leuchtenburg..´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. July 1997.ECONOMIC HISTORY. Designs Within Disorder concentrates on what economists were saying during the New Deal. It was not just for the day as it was in Cambridge. how Franklin D. too. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. Roosevelt rested his legislative program on the assumption that government should actively seek social justice for all Americans.shtml.eh. Roosevelt himself.net/bookreviews/library/0024. the political paralysis. np. p. responding to left-wing critiques of FDR. Patterson. EH.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. "but anywhere seems better than where they have been. 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. 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. Department of History. without which the New Deal would indeed have been mindless and devious. and in the New Deal that continued throughout. Washington seemed like Cambridge on the morning of the Harvard-Yale game: "All the shops were on display.1987. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. Only a few weeks after Roosevelt took office. the end result was an "Americanized version of Keynesian macroeconomics" which became part and parcel of governmental policy by the end of the 1930s. "The people aren't sure. p. He provided those with more learning and understanding of economic matters an opportunity to develop their ideas. After much experimentation.NET BOOK REVIEW .washingtonpost. . The historian James T. There was something in the air that had not been there before.wcdebate.washingtonpost. FDR REPRESENTED A WATERSHED IN ECONOMIC THINKING Michael V.just where they are going." On the New York Curb Exchange. np. crowds moved excitedly.htm. In the homes on the streets. Volume 9 Page 69 FDR¶S ECONOMIC LEGACY IS CRUCIALLY IMPORTANT 1. the notion of the State got little attention in America before FDR. Similar to his earlier study. accessed May 5. 3). http://www. not least those who are disadvantaged.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Starting in the spectacular First Hundred Days. Leuchtenburg. 1). Roosevelt brought the Welfare State to America. University of Mississippi . accessed May 1. where trading resumed on March 15.. in Barber's opinion. the Rooseveltian years were "a watershed in economic policy and in economic thinking" (p. 2002." noted one business journal. 2002. Gone was the torpor of the Hoover years. accessed May 5. np.com . In this sense. his opportunism was grounded in social concern and conscience. 2. the spirit of the country seemed markedly changed. one eyewitness later remembered. IN JUST A FEW WEEKS. in the offices there is a feeling of hope reborn. Although European theorists had been talking about der Staat for decades.Happy days are here again. Roosevelt's Washington. everyone was joyous. the stock ticker ended the day with the merry message: "Goodnite. 2).1987. Although not a great economic thinker. http://www. has written: ³Roosevelt was no hard-eyed merchandiser." Again and again.htm. years after it had become a fixture in other lands. Namorato. was a "laboratory affording economists an opportunity to make hands-on contact with the world of events" (p.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears. Roosevelt listened to and responded to their suggestions. In the case of Franklin Roosevelt..
1987. Leuchtenburg. professor of International Relations at the International Studies Unit.africa. Volume 9 Page 70 FDR¶S OVERSEAS POLICY WAS EXCELLENT 1.htm. the United States was firmly committed to isolationism. accessed April 22.edu/asq/v2/v2i2a3. 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." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. np.htm. accessed May 5. AFRICAN STUDIES QUARTERLY.com . Roosevelt made full use of his executive power in recognizing the USSR. Rhodes University. a position he was said to prefer to all others. Leuchtenburg. p. although promulgated by Franklin D." Robert Divine has concluded. Roosevelt. Wilsonian precepts resonated clearly in the messsage of the Atlantic Charter which. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy.htm. and.wcdebate. No private program and no public policy. np. "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. and it seems improbable. it had refused to participate in either the League of Nations or the World Court. http://www.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. late in his second term. FDR HELPED PROMOTE SOVEREIGNTY FOR COLONIZED PEOPLES Korwa G. Roosevelt had wide latitude to demonstrate his executive leadership by guiding the country through a victorious struggle against the fascist powers.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/fdryears. Political Studies Department. 1998. "His role in insuring the downfall of Adolf Hitler is alone enough to earn him a respected place in history. Vol. in any sector of our national life. 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. ³The FDR Years: On Roosevelt and His Legacy. p. Never before had a president been given the opportunity to lead his people to a triumph of these global dimensions. Roosevelt's high place rests also on his role in leading the nation to accept the far-ranging responsibilities of world power. crafting the Good Neighbor Policy. FDR¶S LEGACY IS THE ABOLITION OF INTERNATIONAL ISOLATIONISM William E. 2. South Africa. providing aid to the Allies and leading the nation toward active involvement in World War II. np." 3. accessed May 5. When he took office. manifestly indicated US dissatisfaction with the lack of sovereignty for colonised peoples. As a wartime president.ufl. http://web. 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. Denied by Congress the discretionary authority he sought.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. it is framed with perfect futility. 2002. can now escape from the compelling fact that if it is not framed with reference to the world.1987. 2002. that such a circumstance will ever arise again. Adar. FDR¶S INTERNATIONAL ROLE WAS FIRST-RATE William E.washingtonpost. Wilson's intellectual heir. 2. No. As commander-in-chief. 2002.´ Conference on Leadership in the Modern Presidency at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University on April 3. p. 2. http://www.washingtonpost. given the nature of nuclear weapons.
Had Roosevelt only kept his inoffensive campaign promises of 1932²cut federal spending. accessed May 02. ROOSEVELT¶S LEGACY IS TO TRAMPLE ON LIBERTY Robert Higgs. Rather. accessed May 02. But for all his undeniable political prowess. September 1998. taxes. 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.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs. Flynn said of FDR. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. THE FREEMAN. 3. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. p. he prolonged the depression and fastened on the country a bloated. http://www. http://www. 2. THE FREEMAN.html. p. But however significant his legacies. the root cause of the prevailing malaise was the continuation of the depression. incoherent mass of new expenditures. np. Between 1929 and 1939 the economy sacrificed an entire decade of normal economic growth. the New Deal created so much confusion.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs. uncertainty. accessed May 02.independent. high unemployment.independent. np. September 1998.wcdebate. and business failures. balance the budget. and hence overall private economic activity. 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. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. no economy can grow. np. http://www. maintain a sound currency. intrusive government that has been trampling on the people¶s liberties ever since.com . In this madness. 2002. as many observers claimed at the time.independent. regulations. As John T. 2002. especially during the congressional sessions of 1933 and 1935. He was no hero. THE NEW DEAL WAS A MASSIVE VOTE-BUYING SCHEME Robert Higgs. September 1998. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. Roosevelt deserves no reverence. the New Deal served as a massive vote-buying scheme.2 Without capital accumulation. p. 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.´ 4. In the face of the interventionist onslaught. never recovered enough to restore the high levels of production and employment enjoyed in the 1920s.independent. After all. embraced interventionist policies on a wide front.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs. which would have increased the national income 30 to 40 percent. stop bureaucratic centralization in Washington²the depression might have passed into history before his next campaign in 1936.html. p. Coming into power at a time of widespread destitution. 2002. by taxing and spending. http://www. subsidies. FDR¶S POLICIES ACTUALLY PROLONGED THE DEPRESSION Robert Higgs. Volume 9 Page 71 THE NEW DEAL WAS BAD FOR THE ECONOMY. and direct government participation in productive activities.´ and eventually ³no political boss could compete with him in any county in America in the distribution of money and jobs. With its bewildering.html. np. 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. By wheeling and dealing. But instead.org/tii/news/x980900Higgs. he got himself elected time after time. by ranting against "economic royalists" and posturing as the friend of the common man. 2002. 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. FDR and Congress. THE FREEMAN.html. THE FREEMAN. and hostility among businessmen and investors that private investment. Despite its economic illogic and incoherence. the New Deal did prolong the depression. The government¶s own greatly enlarged economic activity did not compensate for the private shortfall.1 billion. the New Dealers had a method. Senior Fellow in Political Economy at The Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. THE NEW DEAL PROLONGED THE DEPRESSION Robert Higgs. accessed May 02. In fact. PROLONGING THE DEPRESSION 1. fear. September 1998.
Barber details how Hopkins brought in young academics sympathetic to this approach. Roosevelt took such complete command that he "left social inquiry. FDR SHOULD NOT GET CREDIT FOR KEYNESIAN ECONOMICS Michael V. In fact." "That Roosevelt was the democrat that great gentlemen always are in no way abated his grandeur. who praised "the encomium that Murray Kempton justly bestowed on Roosevelt.wcdebate. University of Mississippi . World War II. DESPITE ESTABLISHMENT HISTORIANS.. no less analyzed in terms of his own thinking on what these economists were telling him and his close advisors.splendidly eternal for romance. Still.. but the president himself is seldom even mentioned. and the immediate post-war era. in his last chapters. Finally.owing to his engraving upon the public consciousness the sense that men were indeed equal. accessed May 1.. Barber takes his argument through the later 1930s." Try as they might. Franklin Delano Roosevelt attained similar heights among large sectors of the population. however. individuals like Galbraith left the New Deal.endearingly exalted. Finally.NET BOOK REVIEW . 171)." Roosevelt and Lucy Mercer "were persons even grander on the domestic stage than they would end up being on the cosmic one. DIDN¶T ADDRESS INEQUITY Noam Chomsky. [We are] as homesick as Alsop for a time when America was ruled by gentlemen and ladies. Galbraith in the Office of Price Administration helped to mobilize America's wartime economy. Namorato." and met the great crisis in their lives.eh.. In the end..ECONOMIC HISTORY. NOT FDR Michael V. The important fact is that Roosevelt brought us "comfort. 2002.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. accessed May 1. Barber credits Roosevelt with so much in terms of providing economists with an opportunity to influence policy.net/bookreviews/library/0024. indeed revere. [His blend of elegance with compassion] adds up to true majesty. accessed May 1.a wasteland. 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." But that is only the carping of trivial minds.. Somehow. EH.shtml. Keynesianism took hold after 1945 only after it had infiltrated the universities (p. There was one published reaction. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. who placed their trust in him. July 1997.. this demeanor as the aristocratic style. including many of the poor and working class. etc. University of Mississippi .shtml.eh..net/bookreviews/library/0024.. 2002. 2. Barber concluded that the Full Employment Act was more of a victory for the opponents of the Keynesian approach than one would have suspected." whatever the record of economic reform and civil rights may show.zmag. by Noel Annan..ECONOMIC HISTORY.. Those of us who were born to circumstances less assured tend to think of." etc... http://www. 3. through Roosevelt and Truman..." 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. Department of History.org/chomsky/dd/dd-c02s03.. http://www. The aura of sanctity remains among intellectuals who worship at the shrine. "in the grandest style." He left us with "nostalgia" that is "aching. 1992.. FDR. Reviewing a laudatory book on FDR by Joseph Alsop in the New York Review of Books. DETERRING DEMOCRACY. Department of History." His "enormous bulk" stands between us "and all prior history. THE ECONOMISTS SHOULD GET THE CREDIT. the spinners of fantasy could not even approach such heights in the Reagan era. a secret love affair.html. Namorato.NET BOOK REVIEW . Seeing Harry Hopkins' appointment as Secretary of Commerce as a turning point towards official acceptance of Keynesianism. http://www. Volume 9 Page 72 FDR¶S ECONOMIC POLICIES WERE NOT TRULY EFFECTIVE 1. how the president barely tolerated Thurman Arnold and his anti-trust movement. EH. Chapter 2. July 1997. 2002. Roosevelt is lost amidst the intellectual environment that Barber has created. and how people like John K.com .
anti-American louts who have frayed the fabric of the blue jeans of American life. some of whom even tried to expel him from the Legislature as a "traitor. 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. with that said. Hayden decided to run for elected office. including Froines and Weiner.S.it is possible to sum up the academic debate surrounding them. That court based its decision on procedural errors by U. Abbie Hoffman. the 7th U. he was arrested as a member of the "Chicago Seven" for inciting a riot at the Democratic National Convention. He was elected to the state Assembly in 1982 -. challengers of the status quo and defenders of the downtrodden -. As some former radicals did. he was a prominent defendant in the Chicago Seven trial. Basically.S. Far from it: Hayden welcomes the dialogue. Who is right? Well. Along with four other defendants -.committed to the Socratic and Platonic tradition of logic and rhetoric -. In 1968.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. were John Froines and Lee Weiner. the Los Angeles Times reported. and what he and those inspired by him did during the 1960s. There are those who consider them to be heroic protestors. He later served as a ³freedom rider.´ 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.wcdebate. let¶s examine one of the most fascinating periods of recent American history. One of those movements. Circuit Court of Appeals. he has lived in Los Angeles since 1971. his ideas. he was best known for his 16-year marriage to actress Jane Fonda.and when he was elected as a state assemblyman 20 years ago. Students for a Democratic Society.com . Together. which he sees as necessary for a rich and stable intellectual culture. Later. were acquitted of additional conspiracy charges. The other defendants. and whether some of the political movements of the time were benevolent or detrimental.does not shy away from nor roll his eyes at debates on the impact of the 1960s.Jerry Rubin. though. Nicholas Lemann. Hayden continued with his activism.tomhayden. And unlike me. in order to answer that question. It wouldn¶t hurt to have a gander at what they have continued to do in the ensuing decades. "Tom Hayden changed America". you¶ve gotta admit he¶s led a pretty interesting life so far. his life. Volume 9 Page 73 TOM HAYDEN It says a great deal about American academic thinking that we are still arguing about the 1960s. Rennie Davis and David Dellinger -. they participated in many controversial events demonstrating their opposition to the Vietnam War. All the defendants. So. District Judge Julius Hoffman.the issues they tackled ranged from the war in Vietnam to racial injustice to anti-nuclear politics to American economic inequity -.and those who consider them to be troublemaking. we¶ll have to take a look at Hayden. Born December 11.com) admits. Undaunted by his legal trouble. even those ³intent to riot´ convictions were overturned by a federal appeals court. there are two camps that feel strongly as regards Hayden and SDS."´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Hayden -. TOM HAYDEN¶S LIFE Regardless of your opinion of Hayden as an activist or as a person. ³he was regarded warily as an invader and outlaw by his fellow lawmakers. In 1969 and 1970. As his own website (www. While it¶s certainly impossible to sum up either the SDS or Hayden in just a few pages -.Hayden was convicted of intent to riot at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. wrote the national correspondent of The Atlantic. who were not convicted. 1939.
he was given kudos by the Sierra Club and the California League Conservation Voters for backing protection of endangered species and proenvironment record. again husband of different actress. Hayden was called the "legislator of the year" by the American Lung Association for taking on the tobacco industry. which was written by Tom Hayden in 1962. former husband of actress. and decried the prominence of special interest waste and abuse of power in California politics. The conclusion of the Port Huron Declaration reads: Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.´ using rhetoric reminiscent of early American rabble rousers such as Thomas Paine. politician. including legislation on behalf of women. Volume 9 Page 74 This didn¶t stop him. While a state legislator. even when he wasn¶t married to Barbarella. wrote Sacramento Bee columnist Dan Walters. As one might expect given the racial intolerance prevalent in America at the time -. his tenure as a state senator was not the first time Hayden had influenced legislative agendas.he sponsored numerous bills. the culmination of seven consecutive electoral victories representing the west side of Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. That includes student groups. While he didn¶t pass much legislation -. Hayden recognized that power could not truly be challenged without alliances between various progressive groups. activist. Hayden never decried the existence of the political system as such.Hayden decried the injustice of the discrepancy in material wealth and economic opportunity between the white and black communities. praised by the Jewish National Fund for his support of Israel.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. hailed by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference for his civil rights achievements. of course. What kind of action? Well.his radical views often polarized even friendly legislators -. Hayden also has two grown children from his earlier marriage to Fonda. (Look it up. Then statement encouraged other students to research and understand the world at large. and on and on. Unlike many of his fellow radicals. lots of different kinds. and more. fought for reform of the K-12 educational system. and other activists of various stripes. He backed pro-labor. to take action. husband of actress. presidential assistant Richard Goodwin. author. Recognizing that this would require revolutionary change. Hardly a single issue activist or politician. Until he was forced out by term limits. 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. Activist. Hayden wrote the Port Huron Statement while a student at The University of Wisconsin. He is currently married to the actress Barbara Williams. African-Americans and Latinos and Holocaust survivors. anti-sweatshop legislation -which you might expect of a former 1960s radical.not necessarily the hard Marxist leaning of various communist groups. the SDS had socialist leanings -. the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was still two years away -. He has an infant son with Williams. kids). he was "the conscience of the (California State) Senate".remember. Even in his youth. workers. Like many of the so-called New Left groups of the time. but a general desire for leveling the economic playing field in the United States. the SDS got its name from a desire for what they termed ³true democracy. Indeed. In fact. too.com . It¶s been a tumultuous ride for Hayden. At least one prominent political figure. the founding document of Students for a Democratic Society.wcdebate. 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. as he was elected to the state Senate in 1992. 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. convict. Hayden fought against university tuition increases. convict with his sentence overturned. But mainstream groups honored him.
. And. He responds to the charges of people such as Allan Bloom and David Horowitz thusly: What Bloom and others see as moral relativism -. there was tension in this: many labor groups distrust environmentalists because of perceived inattention to the cause of workers.of turning a blind eye to oppression if it suits their political ends.they argue that the student movements essentially defended the right of societies to choose communism -.´ It seems. improving cultural literacy or improving the quality of life. and millions of abstract "others" we knew more directly because of our common peril. or Soviet) communism -. It's an institution that is a full participant in our democratic society. Especially because of the nuclear age. if one is not progressive at all. The 1960s radicals were not defending Vietnamese (or Chinese. Pursuit of knowledge is then eclipsed by the needs of the moment and the opinion of the masses. higher education is not separate from democracy. the university loses the critical detachment necessary to preserve and pass on the core values of Western civilization. at least in the United States. HAYDEN: Bloom has it backwards. on the remoteness of the curriculum from the real dilemmas of life. Hayden expanded upon this defense of his philosophy: NPQ: In Bloom's mind. even people that consider themselves ³progressive´ on one or more issues might not be given to the kind of movement-building that SDS advocated. as long as we have a US Constitution there will be the possibility of strikes or Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. the SDS. depending on how we view it American society. 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 -.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.wcdebate. Just because it isn¶t your morality. when the current preoccupations of a democratic society become the primary concerns of the university.Hayden sees as merely a shift in morals. Bloom continuously asserts that higher education has failed democracy. on the failure of the university to stand as a critical institution representing inquiry.com . one would hardly be given to support any of the prevailing agendas that Hayden or his allies would. 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. Thus. then. Rather than moral relativism. 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. ³the enclosing fact of the Cold War. that the United States should not engage in what the SDS felt were immoral activities. When he was interviewed by the journal NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. symbolized by the presence of the Bomb. but it seems difficult for him to comprehend that. Volume 9 Page 75 While Hayden has never focused on one issue to the exclusion of all others.or contaminated by. Higher education is fully integrated into . Quite the opposite is true. the Vietnam War provided his activist awakening. Let us turn to the latter group now.they were defending their own brand of moral claims. It is not Plato's cave. for example. brought awareness that we ourselves. Hayden might say. that Hayden and SDS defended a multidisciplinary activism that recognized the need for progressive groups of all stripes to come together toward overlapping goals. it is certainly possible to decide based on his activist priorities which are the most important to him. We live in an economy and a culture where ideas are not separate from improving productivity. Like many of his vintage. Naturally. As a result. pacifism and the avoidance of war were a pressing concern for Hayden: as he wrote then. insists Hayden to this day. this was actually the mirror image of the moral absolutism that Bloom and his allies defended. of course. and indeed the 1960s in its entirety. on the cowardly silence of the intellectual community in the 50s. and our friends.. might die at any time. and some of the charges they have levied against Hayden.
wcdebate.and the vexing corollarly question. The Weathermen are setting the terms for all of us now. whether it is justified in an advanced democracy which generally protects freedom of speech -. Because of the overturned conviction.not unlike many members of the debate community. OTHER CRITICISMS OF HAYDEN Even if individuals agreed with the goals of the SDS. Nevertheless. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.such as a willingness to riot at the Democratic National Convention. He is unafraid of a vigorous and public discussion on policies. who refused to rule out violence as a political tactic. According to observers. others maintain that Hayden and SDS were supporters of violent groups. at the Weathermen¶s Days of Rage gathering. it is worth reporting and considering that Hayden and SDS were certainly on the edge of the debate. CONCLUSION -. it¶s this: he isn't afraid to change with the times. even if they weren¶t violent themselves. they might be criticized for methods -. Hayden told the group: "Anything that intensifies our resistance«is in the service of humanity. Many say that the riot was something the SDS planned all along -.HAYDEN AND DEBATE If there is one thing that we can say about Tom Hayden. However.com ." This would seem to be at least a tacit endorsement of the group¶s tactics.certainly. philosophies and ideas -. The question of whether violence is justified as a political tactic -.is not something we will concern ourselves with here. this is far from undisputed. Critics cite Hayden¶s speech to the radical group The Weathermen.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. that was the basis of the government¶s case against the Chicago Seven. 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.
Tom. 2002. Volume 4. MISSION TO HANOI. Tom. WASHINGTON POST. the New Left and the Leftover Left. author of Commies: A Journey Through the Old Left. REUNION: A MEMOIR. http://www. 1999. Tom.html. 1966 (pb New York: Signet. Radosh. Volume 9 Page 77 BIBLIOGRAPHY Aptheker. Staughton & Thomas Hayden.edu/~hst306/documents/huron. p. Port Huron Statement. accessed May 2. The Other Side. New York: New American Library. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. Horowitz. THE LOVE OF POSSESSION IS A DISEASE WITH THEM. Tom.com/columnists/radosh/2001/rr11-27-01.com . May/June 1997. activist. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Tom Hayden. B1. former radical. 1972. 1967). Hayden.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Hayden. Chicago: Holt. New York: Random House. 20. http://coursesa.org/taemj97s. FRONTPAGE MAGAZINE. Lynd. 1988. 1966. activist and former California state legislator. New York: International Publishers. Rinehart and Winston.wcdebate. 1962. Hayden. 2001. #4. David. November 27.matrix. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. Ronald. 2002. 2002.theamericanenterprise. Hayden. http://www.frontpagemag. Fall 1987. December 5.htm. Herbert with prefaces by Staughton Lynd and Tom Hayden. accessed May 2. activist and former California state legislator.msu. accessed May 1. p.htm.
In actuality it frustrates democracy by confusing the individual citizen. and a commitment to social experimentation with them. It was honorable to protest that situation. accessed May 2. that we direct our present appeal. activist. paralyzing policy discussion. sitting on cold pavements and hard floors. at once the spark and engine of change. yet the message of our society is that there is no viable alternative to the present. accessed May 2.. AND HAVE MORE IMPACT Tom Hayden. activist and former California state legislator. Fall 1987. activist. p. only one was about Viet Nam.html.. marching. the workplaces. activist.the vast majority of our people regard the temporary equilibriums of our society and world as eternally-functional parts. that something can be done to change circumstances in the school. 20. http://coursesa. December 5. For the first time in memory. and those who did so should be blessed in our history.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. do they not as well produce a yearning to believe there is an alternative to the present. others today. On the contrary. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 1999.. The search for truly democratic alternatives to the present. and consolidating the irresponsible power of military and business interests. Our world is guided by the sense that we may be the last generation in the experiment with living. Do the Clinton administration's investor-based trade priorities benefit America's interest in highwage jobs. calling on us not to be "good Germans. WASHINGTON POST. WE MUST CONTINUE TO EXPERIMENT TOWARD TRUE DEMOCRACY Tom Hayden. December 5.msu. p." That's what Bloom doesn't understand. Port Huron Statement. 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. the government? It is to this latter yearning. 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. is the pepper spray helping you relive your youth? My response was that it beats taking Viagra.matrix. They are the exact opposite of Nazi storm troopers. the bureaucracies. One reporter even asked me. Professors at Columbia and Berkeley were among the intellectual architects of that war. 4. We were spending $30 billion a year on death and destruction. THE AMERICAN POLITICAL SYSTEM ISN¶T REALLY DEMOCRACY Tom Hayden. Comparisons between the World Trade Organization protests here and the protest movements of the '60s became a media micro-industry last week.edu/~hst306/documents/huron. being gassed myself.wcdebate. #4. My serious take on the question might surprise you. 3. one which moves us and. np.edu/~hst306/documents/huron. p. hundreds of Americans per week were coming home in body bags. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY.com .html. WASHINGTON POST. THE NEW MOVEMENTS CONTINUE THE LEGACY OF THE 60s. p. activist. But we are a minority . Some would have us believe that Americans feel contentment amidst prosperity . we hope. B1. 1962. 2002. THE NEW MOVEMENTS ARE LIKE THE NEW BOSTON TEA PARTY Tom Hayden. 5. Port Huron Statement. 1962. on the contrary. 2. np.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. In this is perhaps the outstanding paradox: we ourselves are imbued with urgency. The American political system is not the democratic model of which its glorifiers speak. They were. 2002. THE 1960s WERE THE UNIVERSTIES¶ FINEST MOMENT Tom Hayden. p. B1. 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. not that of their opponents. Based on five days of joining in protests. Volume 4. http://coursesa. Seattle '99 was more like the Boston Tea Party than the days of rage we knew in the late '60s. 1999. the patriotism of the corporate globalizers is in question. Volume 9 Page 78 THE 1960s ACTIVISM OF SDS AND HAYDEN WAS POSITIVE 1.matrix.msu. 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. is a worthy and fulfilling human enterprise.
the university will unfortunately reap a whirlwind. BLOOM IS WRONG ± HIS IDEA OF THE UNIVERSITY HASN¶T EXISTED FOR CENTURIES Tom Hayden. let's also not forget the 60s are over. p. At my university. led one thousand Yale students to Washington in protest. how should we regard the official claim that the US was in Viet Nam to stop Chinese communism? Speaking of moral relativism. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.the legitimacy of questioning everything . 20. and Bloom knows that. But far from being a time which gave birth to moral relativism. and it's not anti-intellectual to revolt against those attitudes. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. Wright Mills and Albert Camus rather than Allan Bloom's prescriptions is wrong. activist and former California state legislator. Fall 1987. the most traditional US Secretary of Education we have ever had. #4. I'll give another example. in the 60s. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. the Dean of Women was not encouraging reading in Greek tragedy. #4. 20. Fall 1987. that erosion comes from turning the university to the specialized uses of society. or Morningside Heights. activist and former California state legislator. #4. Furthermore. We have the most conservative president we have ever had. 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. Speaking of mindlessness. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. If there has been an erosion of general education. That was the University of Michigan in 1960. 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. That administrative behavior deserved a revolt. That omission is another reason why his book is so baffling. Volume 9 Page 79 HAYDEN¶S CRITICS ARE WRONG ± THE 60s WEREN¶T ABOUT MORAL RELATIVISM 1. thinking stopped with the moral indignation over the Vietnam War and racial injustice.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Volume 4. 2. Kingman Brewster. activist and former California state legislator. HAYDEN¶S CRITICS HAVE MANY MORE MORAL PROBLEMS THAN HE DOES Tom Hayden. Volume 4. What would Bloom make of that situation? His focus is so confused because he chooses his events so selectively. Volume 4. Fall 1987. Volume 4.then of course one of the occasional consequences will be rebellious behavior. p. Was that a worthy undertaking by a university leader? Absolutely. NPQ: Bloom argues that. and they say those things loudly on the edge of the Oakland ghetto. p. To view the 60s as mindless because many of us followed C. but it's confused because the cloistered community of scholars Bloom describes has not existed for many centuries. to be much more accurate about the 60s than Bloom.com . 4. Fall 1987. p. If we accept Bloom's Platonic model .wcdebate. THE 1960s WEREN¶T ABOUT RELATIVISM: THEY INTRODUCED REAL MORALITY Tom Hayden. The 60s were an intellectual and intensely introspective decade. the 60s introduced morality into an amoral society and a materialistic university. Does Bloom have a point? Hayden: Of course he has a point. ALLAN BLOOM¶S FOCUS IS CONFUSED: HE SELECTS THE WRONG ISSUES Tom Hayden. 20. the president of Yale. 3. And it did. 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. Did that damage Yale? Did it morally and intellectually cripple the thousand students who participated? I think not. He complains that students become economics majors prematurely and they all go to university with fantasies about becoming millionaires. One week after the Kent State shootings. They spent an entire week involved in the process of lobbying the government to terminate the war. the whitest universities elitists could want and the income base of the people attending our universities is safely affluent. activist and former California state legislator. NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY. #4. 20. but it can't improve on a black admission rate of 5% or 6%.
Hayden and seven other radicals. which soon became the largest student organization of the New Left. and the chaos on the convention floor. When he called for a demonstration at the 1968 Democratic national convention to protest the Vietnam War. As principal architect of the Port Huron Statement in 1962. Because of such considerations. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. Hayden¶s plans attracted only two or three thousand people to Lincoln Park. accessed May 1.com . The ensuing melee changed the shape of American politics. Chicago¶s Mayor Daley had recently ordered his police to shoot looters. the defendants created a near-riot in the courtroom itself. This fit with the general strategy Hayden had laid out in private discussions with me. former radical. HAYDEN PROPELLED THE LEFT WING DEMOCRATS INTO POWER David Horowitz. Seale was so obstructive that the judge ordered him bound and gagged. Four years later. former radical. HAYDEN AND SDS ONLY WANTED TO STIR UP TROUBLE David Horowitz." as Mao¶s Red Guards had done during the cultural revolution in China. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. HAYDEN LURED PEOPLE TO CHICAGO FOR THE EXPRESS PURPOSE OF RIOTING David Horowitz. everybody knew it meant a confrontation with the Chicago police that could prove bloody. May/June 1997. But that was enough to generate trouble²Hayden¶s real agenda. Jerry Rubin.wcdebate. including the Black Panthers¶ Bobby Seale. 3.htm.htm. 2002. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. May/June 1997. destroyed the presidential chances of Hubert Humphrey and moved the Democratic party dramatically to the left. were indicted for conspiring to create a riot. The now-famous pictures of demonstrators being bloodied by police. One of the conspirators. he said more than once. 2002. May/June 1997. 2002. When people¶s heads are cracked by police. http://www.theamericanenterprise.theamericanenterprise.org/taemj97s. During the trial.theamericanenterprise. admitted a decade later that the organizers had lured activists to Chicago hoping to create the riot that eventually took place. http://www. it "radicalizes them. 2. http://www. Tom Hayden had helped launch Students for a Democratic Society (SDS).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Ramparts editor-in-chief Warren Hinckle decided to participate by publishing a "wall paper. A radical street protest would put people¶s lives at risk. 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. accessed May 1. When the dust cleared in Chicago. Volume 9 Page 80 HAYDEN¶S POLITICAL AGENDA WAS SECONDARY: HE JUST WANTED TROUBLE 1." The trick was to maneuver the idealistic and unsuspecting into situations that would achieve this result.htm. former radical. During the riots that followed the assassination of Martin Luther King. The picture of a black man in chains was a made-to-order script for the radical melodrama. accessed May 1. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE.org/taemj97s.org/taemj97s.
" and accuses him of responsibility for destroying what he saw as becoming a mass democratic Left. 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.org/taemj97s." Anyone who knew Tom knew that the bombthrower was the real Hayden. http://www. a group organized by Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin.theamericanenterprise. when Hayden told the rioters "Anything that intensifies our resistance«is in the service of humanity.org/taemj97s. former radical. Hayden gave Bobby Seale a platform in Lincoln Park. 3. and Seale addressed the crowd with the suggestive exhortation that "If a pig comes up to us and starts swinging a billy club. he«was on the left wing of the Democratic party. http://www.htm. 2002. author of Commies: A Journey Through the Old Left. HAYDEN REALLY ADVOCATED FIREBOMBING COP CARS David Horowitz. Sid Peck. Having secured pacifist cover. 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. accessed May 1. May/June 1997. Some would like to separate the rest of the so-called moderate New Left from the Weatherman. he warned one group in New York that "they should come to Chicago prepared to shed their blood. which had issued a call for "armed struggle" in American cities. former radical. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE.com/columnists/radosh/2001/rr11-27-01. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. Todd Gitlin. the pacifist group that issued the call to the Chicago demonstration. accessed May 2. Volume 9 Page 81 HAYDEN SAID HE WANTED PEACE." and he told his co-organizer. it will flow all over the city. that he expected 25 people to die." 4. you got to down that pig in defense of yourself. HAYDEN TRIED TO MAKE BLOOD FLOW ALL OVER THE CITY David Horowitz. THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE. 2002. May/June 1997. former radical. 2001. Thursday. and Friday [Hayden] was a National Liberation Front guerrilla. Rennie Davis. He recruited the Yippies. BUT HE REALLY WANTED VIOLENCE 1. accessed May 1. showed the possibility of a true democratic radicalism. It is therefore good that Ayers reminds us of Hayden¶s speech to the Weatherman at their Days of Rage.htm.htm. and on Tuesday. 2002. According to Hayden¶s own retrospective account. later told me with somebitterness that Hayden had been "extremely deceptive" in outlining his agenda for the gathering. 2002. has condemned Ayers as a "failed terrorist.frontpagemag. who alarmed Chicago officials by immediately threatening to put lsd in the Chicago water supply. FRONTPAGE MAGAZINE. who wrote the famed SDS Port Huron statement in the movement¶s early days. May/June 1997. and Saturday.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Hayden¶s duplicity continued throughout the event. 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. We are so often told by Gitlin and others that Tom Hayden." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. At the event. and you check around and you got your piece. the New Left and the Leftover Left. The Weathermen are setting the terms for all of us now. Hayden also met before the convention with the Weatherman faction of sds. Wednesday. November 27." You won¶t find this in Hayden¶s own memoir. 5. one of SDS¶s first leaders.theamericanenterprise. assuring everyone that his intentions were nonviolent. causing the radical historian Staughton Lynd to comment that "on Monday. Hayden defiantly incited the crowd to "make sure that if blood is going to flow. PREACHING PACIFISM. a member of mobe.wcdebate. As one of the Weather leaders told me later. HAYDEN WAS A GUERILLA BOMBTHROWER David Horowitz. accessed May 1. http://www. Hayden proposed to them that "It might be useful if someone were to fire-bomb police cars. We¶re gonna barbecue us some pork!" Once the violence started.com .org/taemj97s. HAYDEN ADVOCATED VIOLENCE Ronald Radosh.htm. http://www.theamericanenterprise.
96/books9616. within the context of history. Volume 9 Page 82 HOWARD ZINN Howard Zinn is a historian and activist to take note of by any measure.18. to Zinn¶s personal background 1 Interview of Howard Zinn by Robert Birnbaum. p. accessed May 12. that students can be taught to think critically about the world that they live in. the church. np. but almost universally accepted. 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. Most United States history is told from a perspective that puts the government and politicians at the center. he actively engages it. objective. and ignores the daily lives of ordinary citizens. A PEOPLE¶S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES.000 copies. no date. These books have a vested interest in making their version of history appear definitive. the mass media. he tells the narrative of history from the bottom up. THE ZINN READER. 506 4 Zinn. from the perspective of those who have been disempowered throughout each era.com/papers/sonoma/04. p. he has authored several plays. rather than shying away from controversy. narrowly tailored to one academic discipline.´5 This is due. neutral). 1997.e. spoken word CDs.metroactive. Because many of them are framed in terms of their historical context. and rational (unemotional). the character flaws of our leaders.. His progressive history text.1 In addition to his historical writing. 2002. has sold more than 800. p. The author of more than 15 books.wcdebate.´ Zinn critiques what he sees as the sometimes unspoken. April 18-24 1996. this essay will engage each of these values in the context he provides. 503-506 3 Zinn. because. and the lies propagated by ³politicians. http://www. ³Howard Zinn brings his passion for history to Sonoma County´ in The Sonoma Independent. rules for ³good´ scholarship.org/index23.2 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. in part.html Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and an autobiographical commentary on politics and history. it makes them appear more credible and authoritative than their competitors. CRITIQUES OF HISTORIOGRAPHY Zinn¶s seminal text. This is particularly the case in texts that claim to be at all comprehensive. ³Zinn and the Art of History.´4 for example. either nationally or in terms of his own life. 2002.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Zinn is not only prolific but is considered one of the most accessible modern historical writers. [and] popular leaders. He received his Doctorate in history from Columbia and is a Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. revolutionized the way history is told. THE ZINN READER. In contrast. The second way that Zinn¶s historical methodology challenges the dominant orthodoxy is that it describes history from the standpoint of the oppressed. scientific (i. A PEOPLE¶S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES. such as history textbooks used in schools. p. I will address each of these in turn.com . These are that writing should be disinterested. 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. History has traditionally been told as though there was an objective truth waiting to be discovered and written. http://howardzinn. accessed May 11. that is. THE ZINN READER: WRITINGS ON DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. Howard Zinn takes an entirely different approach to the writing of history. There are a number of different values and philosophical arguments that Zinn writes about. In his essay ³The Uses of Scholarship. he integrates the concepts of historiography with activism.htm 2 Howard Zinn. from the author¶s perspective. 507 5 Zack Stenz.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE.
particularly former Supreme Court Associate Justice Abe Fortas. This stems.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. and his next job as an Air Force bomber. Stenz. np. John Stienbeck.htm Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Volume 9 Page 83 with the civil rights movement and the labor movement. such as his retelling of the colonization of North America from the perspective of indigenous peoples. 2002. the role socioeconomic class played throughout history greatly effected Zinn. and ³when 6 7 Stenz. you'll find that most of the legislation passed is class legislation which favors the elite. However."Whenever you introduce a new view of historical events. This makes him simultaneously one of the most loved and hated historians of this era. who were engaged in non-violent civil disobedience. AND DEMOCRACY: NINE FALLACIES Zinn writes extensively. the guardians of the old order will spring to the attack. he participated in extensive protest with his students.org/index23. Marx. Z MAG. Instead. and at a young age was influenced by the writing of Charles Dickens. ³[D]espite his popularity. during the depression. then the punishment itself is unjust. each of which refutes one of the primary arguments made by opponents of civil disobedience. The book is organized into nine sections. to take a position as the chair of the history and social sciences department at Spelman College. which favors the rich. Georgia. In 1956 Zinn moved his wife and children to Atlanta. he does not identify with those who argue that hard work is all that is needed to get ahead. he is a proponent of progressive social and economic policy.´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. np. in part because of his commitment to stirring up controversy. A PEOPLE¶S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE." Zinn says. You'll find huge subsidies to corporations all through [A]merican history. anarchist. a ³Negro college´ in a deeply segregated area. p. physically demanding. Some of these fallacies are specific to the role of the court system in ensuring justice. and as a result eventually wrote the book DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY (his treatise on civil disobedience). One of his lesser known books. particularly the United States. Inspired by his students. he won a New Deal job as an apprentice shipfitter. Zinn explained: ³I could see history being made before my eyes by ordinary people who are never written about in the history books. Finally. At age eighteen. is focused specifically on this topic. Zinn argues that if one is punished for breaking an unjust law. and anti-fascist writers. 1998. which was painful. however. 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. as well as many essays about his specific experience at Spelman.wcdebate. and he confesses that he isn't surprised«. about the role of social protest and civil disobedience within democratic societies. NONVIOLENCE. Zinn's brand of "bottom-up" history has been reviled by political conservatives. 8 Howard Zinn. p. in nearly all of his books. to a great degree. from his role as a professor. Zinn came from a working class background. 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. Upton Sinclair.´7 In addition to these issues of racism. Third.com . MOTHER JONES. YOU MUST ACCEPT PUNISHMENT IF YOU COMMIT CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE This fallacy derives from the glorification of Socrates¶ decision to accept his unjust death sentence.´6 His perspective is that revolutionary and even utopian ideas are crucial for shaking up the stronghold conservatives have over academia. and various communist. 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. Zinn is well known for integrating his own personal advocacy and activism with his writing. and others. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. and closely related to the last point. http://howardzinn. December 3. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn. lived in tenements. and prohibited union membership. accessed May 12. but extends to all of his writing. but I will focus on those concerning the role of the social protester. Despite the benefits of that job.
1968. 1968. 29 Howard Zinn. Zinn writes.. Zinn points out.´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. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE MUST BE ABSOLUTELY NONVIOLENT There are a plethora of excellent theorists²including Gandhi. In any humanist philosophy. Planned acts of violence in an enormously important cause (the resistance against Hitler may be an example) could be justifiable.. Revolutionary warfare. Generally.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.g.com . Perhaps the most obvious example were the ³sit ins´ in the segregated South which violated laws against trespassing. the more it is aimed carefully at either a foreign controlling power. 48 10 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. when the segregation was not a public law but a decision by a private business owner. blocking streets. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. even thinkers like Gandhi and Thoreau at times defended the use of violence when no other option was available. p. for example. 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. Unfortunately. or a local tyrannical elite.. and Thoreau²who argue for the benefits of nonviolence. 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. by Zinn. in the course of a protest. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. This would include violating curfews. injustice is sanctioned and perpetuated. 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. in his essay ³Letter From A Birmingham Jail. is useful in answering quotations from Martin Luther King Jr. Zinn outlines several situations which demonstrate the inanity of this principle. because it is counterviolence directed only at a perpetrator of violence«. On the other hand. Furthermore.´ 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.11 9 Howard Zinn. 45 11 Howard Zinn. desegregation). This argument. Zinn argues that all things being equal. a distinction must be drawn between violence against people and violence against property. This principle would also proscribe any solution to injustice resulting not from unjust laws. but instead finds a middle ground between violence and nonviolence. One virtue of Zinn¶s writing is that he does not explicitly encourage violence. On the one hand. Self-defense is by its nature focused. as being a nonviolent world. etc. nonviolence is better than violence.wcdebate. p. 1968. may be morally defensible. the reason this principle is invalid is that it fails to distinguish between important and trivial laws in the context of preventing massive injustice. 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. Volume 9 Page 84 unjust decisions are accepted. he sees the ultimate end of civil disobedience. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. Zinn distinguishes between different levels of violence. but the failure of the government to enforce just laws (e. Martin Luther King Jr.´9 In fact. it treats protest like a game to argue that protesters should accept the penalty for losing instead of continuing their protest to the end. In a theoretical sense. and progress generally. p. Moreover.
p.96/books9616.com . 371 14 Zinn. and she sees no other effective method. therefore. when it protects the rich and punishes the poor. http://www. In these situations. PATRIOTISM AND OPTIMISM Zinn is frequently criticized for not being sufficiently patriotic. But stability and order are not the only desirable conditions social life. 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. The first of these arguments is that regardless of whether the laws are just or unjust. THE ZINN READER. and will therefore be just. it will protect whatever the majority sees as just. even civil disobedience that has good intentions is unjust.18. and must therefore be followed. THE ZINN READER.´12 The most important question then becomes: when the law does not serve the cause of justice. The second justification for the argument that the law (at least in a democracy) has intrinsic value. is that law is created by the people. THE ZINN READER. 370-371 15 Zack Stenz. the majority denies basic principles of justice to the minority for the sake of the majority¶s benefit. 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. Volume 9 Page 85 In essence. There is also justice«.¶ Zinn says.´14 It is in these instances that civil disobedience is justified. There are two primary differences First. Zinn argued that ³the great writers could see through the fog of what was called µpatriotism. 2002. ³Howard Zinn brings his passion for history to Sonoma County´ in The Sonoma Independent. they maintain peace and stability. and when the target of the violence is directly responsible for the oppression. accessed May 11. as when it forbids rape and murder or requires a school to admit all students regardless of race or nationality. Thus. This is certainly true at times.wcdebate.html 13 12 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Nevertheless. when an individual sees injustice in the world around her.¶´ 15 This demonstrates the fundamental distinction Zinn draws between how conservatives define patriotism and how he defines it. the minority is structurally precluded from using the law to advance their rights. civil disobedience may be the only possible method for fighting for justice. when there are no other viable means of successful protest. thus making civil disobedience unjustified. as Zinn writes: ³The law may serve justice. do citizens have a greater obligation to ensure lawfulness or justice? Zinn writes: Thus. particularly for a United States historian. she is justified in violating laws²even if that lawlessness leads to social instability²to fight to stop the injustice. then law and justice are opposed to one another. Chaos and violence are not. µBut«while it's true that I take a very critical view of the United States government in history. have ³µcharacterized A People's History as a ³Hate America´ book.com/papers/sonoma/04. p. Many conservative historians. It is too simplistic to argue that because democracy is majoritarian. peace. Absolute obedience to law may bring order temporarily. But when it sends young men to war.¶ what was considered Zinn. I take a very positive view toward the mass movements of people in America who have fought to make the country a better place. social. Often. Zinn argues that there is a substantial difference between loyalty to the government of a country and loyalty to the country itself. There is no better example of such a case than in the civil rights movement in the United States. stability. but it may not bring justice. p. as we have seen throughout history. and order are desirable. Zinn¶s argument is that limited violence is justified when the oppression being fought is extreme. 370-371 Zinn.metroactive. April 18-24 1996. thus represents the common sentiment of what is just. The problem with this view is that it places stability at a premium while ignoring the price of that stability: ³Surely. and in these cases it is irrefutable that the law ought be followed.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. in various terms. or anything else. be it material.
often successfully. far from being unpatriotic. he quoted from the satire A CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING ARTHUR'S COURT.html 16 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate. attempt to describe a world of oppressive futility.´ THE PROGRESSIVE. His optimism leads him to take a more balanced approach: ³the left hasn't balanced its act very well«. accessed May 11. by Mark Twain: Similarly.¶´ 16 To demonstrate the distinction.org/zinn0701. but the people and the social movements that have fought for justice for all people. 2002. And that's a critical thing to do.com/papers/sonoma/04. http://www. by protesting we strengthen and engage in the true democratic spirit of America. 2002. Zinn is not purely critical of the United States government and its leaders.96/books9616. in contrast to the perception of his critics. http://www.org/zinn0701. he writes history from a perspective which demonstrates the gains that have been made by social movements since the government was established.metroactive. ³Artists of Resistency.html 18 Zack Stenz.progressive. As he argues in his examination of civil disobedience.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. However.progressive. to show people in the present day that they can fight back and win. April 18-24 1996.18. 2002. Volume 9 Page 86 loyalty.´18 One important aspect of Zinn¶s writing is that it does not. is actually one of the best ways of being a patriot. July 2001. Howard Zinn. Instead. but they haven't shown what people have done to resist these policies. They've done a very good job of illuminating the various bad policies of the American government. challenging unjust governmental policies is an integral part of being a citizen of a democracy. ³Howard Zinn brings his passion for history to Sonoma County´ in The Sonoma Independent. http://www. accessed May 11.´ THE PROGRESSIVE. in which the government is overwhelmingly bad and cannot be resisted. Thus. accessed May 11. ³Artists of Resistency. Only by exercizing the right (and duty) to protest do we as individuals truly participate in democracy. Zinn feels that the real.com . eternal part of what makes America America is not the government. The second aspect of Zinn¶s redefinition of patriotism is his insistence that criticizing the government. July 2001.html 17 Howard Zinn.
Accessed May 17. Howard. Ward. Howard.com .org/ HOWARD ZINN¶S ZNET HOMEPAGE. Howard. THREE STRIKES: MINERS. 1999 Fortas. 2001 Zinn. Howard. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 1991 Zinn. Volume 9 Page 87 BIBLIOGRAPHY Churchill. Howard. New York: Harper Perennial.htm HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. New York: Vintage Books. HOWARD ZINN: ON HISTORY.cfm?authorID=97 Zinn. TERRORISM AND WAR (OPEN MEDIA PAMPHLET SERIES). PACIFISM AS PATHOLOGY : REFLECTIONS ON THE ROLE OF ARMED STRUGGLE IN NORTH AMERICA. et al. Howard. THE ZINN READER: WRITINGS ON DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. 2002 Zinn. http://free. New York: Signet Books. Winnipeg: Arbeiter Ring Publishing. 2000 Zinn. 1994 Zinn. HOWARD ZINN ON WAR. New York: Seven Stories Press.org/evolution/articles.zmag. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY: NINE FALLACIES ON LAW AND ORDER. 2000 Zinn. Howard. 2002. DECLARATIONS OF INDEPENDENCE : CROSS-EXAMINING AMERICAN IDEOLOGY. MUSICIANS. Boston: Beacon Press. 2002. New York: Seven Stories Press.ORG. 1968 Zinn. 2001 Zinn.freespeech. A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES: 1492 TO PRESENT. Abe. New York: Harper Perennial. http://www. http://www. Howard. AND THE FIGHTING SPIRIT OF LABOR'S LAST CENTURY.wcdebate. Boston: Beacon Press. New York: Seven Stories Press. New York: Seven Stories Press. YOU CAN¶T BE NEUTRAL ON A MOVING TRAIN: A PERSONAL HISTORY OF OUR TIMES. 1997 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.org/bios/homepage. Accessed May 17.howardzinn. 1964 FREESPEECH. SALESGIRLS. Accessed May 17. Howard. 2002.
DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. and other means have been exhausted. or in) self-defense.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. And in a number of cases. There are two reasons for such criteria. to disorder. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE MAY BE JUSTIFIED BY SPECIFIC CRITERIA Howard Zinn. white people. to overt violence: it would have to guarded. The other is the reason of effectiveness: The purpose of civil disobedience is to communicate to others.htm The principle of civil disobedience doesn't state as a universal that you must always disobey the law (laughter). in situations of urgency where very vital issues are at stake. They broke into courthouses and into jailhouses to rescue escaped slaves. juries acquitted them. p. and indiscriminate violence turns people (rightly) away. Because juries recognized the morality of what they were doing even though they had broken the law.com . you'll see that it wasn't Lincoln who caused the anti-slavery sentiment in the country to grow. aimed carefully at the source of injustice. to the 1850s. December 3. Lincoln was reacting to the growth of the movement that became stronger and stronger from the 1830s to the outbreak of the civil war. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn. when they were brought up on charges and put on trial. accessed May 12. 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. December 3. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. escaped slaves. and so can only be justified in those circumstances where it is a last resort in eliminating a greater evil. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE DENIES THAT LAWS ARE ALWAYS MORAL OR CORRECT Howard Zinn. injustices of all sorts. manifested itself in many acts of civil disobedience against the Fugitive Slave Act that had been passed in 1850. What it does do is refuse the universal principle that you must always obey the law.org/index23. 2002. 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.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.htm I think that the history of the United States indicates that when we have had to redress serious grievances. and preferably directed against property rather than people. And they used certainly acts of civil disobedience. 1998. Well people in the North. free black people. limited. The Fugitive Slave Act required the federal government to aid southern slave owners in bringing escaped slaves back to the South. 2002. http://howardzinn. But the idea of civil disobedience is that Law is not sacrosanct. Sometimes though it's the law itself that's disobeyed. 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.wcdebate. 3. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. All this is to suggest what criteria need to be kept in mind whenever civil disobedience. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn. accessed May 12. black people. 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. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS NECESSARY FOR JUSTICE Howard Zinn. 2. Volume 9 Page 88 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS JUSTIFIED 1. And in the 1850s. One is the moral reason: that violence is in itself an evil. 1968. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. 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. http://howardzinn. If you go back a hundred and fifty years ago to the middle of the nineteenth century.org/index23. they gathered together in committees. 48-49.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. may move from mild actions. You were talking about this going on for hundreds of years. And so laws that sustain injustice should be disobeyed. 1998.
org/index23. p.´ HOWARD ZINN ONLINE. 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. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE ENHANCES DEMOCRACY Howard Zinn. December 3. has been directed to stopping the violence of war. The disobedience of conscientious citizens. DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. it is obedience to governments. DEMOCRATIC LAW IS NOT SACROSANCT. p.´ Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. PROTEST IS NECESSARY WHEN VOTING FAILS TO PROMOTE JUSTICE Howard Zinn. 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. and it's a profoundly undemocratic idea to say that you should judge what you do according to what the law says. that the moment we have cast our ballots. 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. thinking about nuclear war. Victor Considerant pointed out) and we have lost our freedom. ³Gray Matters Interviews Howard Zinn. The psychologist Erich Fromm. but how much of an audience we can speak to depends on how much money we have). that is responsible for the terrible violence of our century. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. or finally. We have been naive in America about the efficacy of the ballot box and representative government to rectify injustice. 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. she responded quietly. accessed May 12. that the two-party system is_only slightly less tyrannical than the one-party system. 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. freedom. 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.com . Slavery probably could not he ended without either a series of revolts by blacks.´) 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. and justice.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. IT MAY BE VIOLATED ON BEHALF OF JUSTICE Howard Zinn. a devastating war waged. 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. for Michels¶ ³iron law of oligarchy´ operates to keep us at the mercy of powerful politicos in both parties. Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Boston University. Historically. 2002.. their calls for war. Volume 9 Page 89 DEMOCRACY DOESN¶T DELEGITIMIZE CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE 1. THE ZINN READER: WRITINGS ON DISOBEDIENCE AND DEMOCRACY. in their appeals to patriotism. 1998. how she felt about her son defying the law. The feeling is justified. 2. we have found it necessary to go outside ³the proper channels´ at certain pivotal times in our history. ironically. 1997. (Daniel Berrigan¶s elderly mother was asked by a reporter. 3. ³It¶s not God¶s law.that wealth dominates the electoral process (see Murray Levin¶s meticulous study. and before him. Or perhaps we should say ³ignore man-made law.wcdebate. for the most part nonviolent. 1968. http://howardzinn. the principles of peace. We forget (hence all the emphasis in recent years on voting rights for the Negro) how inadequate is the ballot. we have freedom to speak. 400-401. 65-66. Kennedy Campaigning).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. when Dan went underground. by the very government that condemned John Brown to death for seeking a less costly means of emancipating the slave. the representative takes over (as Rousseau. Surely. and again during the sit-down strikes of the 1930¶s. So to me the idea of civil dissobedience is to really enhance democracy.
3. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. teach us that city officials. and as a matter of good sense. our Constitution and our traditions. and convicted. police and citizens must be tolerant of mass demonstrations. of course. It must be prepared to prevent this by the use of planning. 1968. so each individual is bound by all of the laws under the Constitution. but his essay should not be read as a handbook on political science. This is true in many instances of refusal to submit to induction. But at the same time. He cannot substitute his own judgment or passion. and any move that they may make toward violence must be quickly countered. indeed. for the rules of law. The motive of civil disobedience. isolated acts of a few persons will overwhelm the restraint of thousands. Just as we expect the government to be bound by all laws. But despite this. However careful both sides may be. The city must perform this duty. It was true in the case of Mrs. p. free of punishment or penalty. Intemperate or hasty retaliation by a single policeman may provoke disorder. 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. Frequently. unless the law is invalid in general or as applied. Thoreau was an inspiring figure and a great writer. must be identified. 62-63. Each of us must live under law. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. CONCERNING DISSENT AND CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. and restrained law enforcement. For example. however large and inconvenient. it is the state¶s duty to arrest the dissident. 70-71. 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. so it also depends upon the individual¶s subservience to the laws duly prescribed. It is not merely government that must live under law. p. 64-65. it is the city¶s duty under law. Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. be right in the eyes of history or morality or philosophy. GOOD MOTIVATIONS FOR CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE DO NOT MAKE IT JUSTIFIED Abe Fortas. 1968. Let me first be clear about a fundamental proposition. to make every effort to provide adequate facilities so that the demonstration can be effectively staged. Agitators and provocateurs. 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. No city should be expected to submit to paralysis or to widespread injury to persons and property brought on by violation of law. Just as our form of life depends upon the government¶s subordination to law under the Constitution. ordered. Demonstrators must be organized. civil disobedience is prompted by both motives²by both a desire to make propaganda and to challenge the law. however noble. Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. does not confer immunity for law violation. and to provide protection for the demonstrators. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and at the same time claim a right in himself to break it by lawless conduct. charged. An enormous degree of self-control and discipline are required on both sides. He may be passionately inspired. It is the state¶s duty to arrest and punish those who violate the laws designed to protect private safety and public order. Vivian Kellems. in accordance with the provisions of law. He may.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. He may be motivated by the highest moral principles. whatever their object. he should be punished by fine or imprisonment. 2. persuasion. but which is practiced as a technique of warfare in a social and political conflict over other issues.com . or both. p.wcdebate. Law violation or intemperate behavior by one demonstrator may provoke police action. Both of these are essential. He cannot pick and choose. CITIZENS SHOULD NOT VIOLATE THE RULE OF LAW FOR THE SAKE OF PROTEST Abe Fortas. however peacefully intended by their organizers. JUSTIFYING ITS RESTRAING Abe Fortas. always involve the danger that they may erupt into violence. Especially if the civil disobedience involves violence or a breach of public order prohibited by statute or ordinance. 1968. so that it can be conducted without paralyzing the city¶s life. These mass demonstrations. and civil disobedience may turn into riot. Volume 9 Page 90 CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE IS UNJUSTIFIED 1. These are not controlling. Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. A citizen cannot demand of his government or of other people obedience to the law. We are a government and a people under law. Police must be trained in tact as well as tactics. as well as practical wisdom. there is always danger that individual. and controlled. If he is properly arrested. This is the dangerous potential of mass demonstrations. whatever its type. CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE MAY SPIRAL OUT OF CONTROL.
Volume 9 Page 91 NONVIOLENT RESISTANCE FAILS 1. but variations do little to alter the crux of the situation: there simply has never been a revolution. As these conditions typically include war. History is replete with variations on these two subthemes. np. violence has been an integral requirement of the process of transforming the state. 2001. 2001.e. in practical terms. Bomber pilots show little remorse for the agony caused by their weapons detonating far below.wcdebate. if followed to its logical conclusions. pacifism and its attendant sacrifice of life cannot even be rightly said to have substantially impacted the level of evident societal violence. Professor of Ethnic Studies and Coordinator of American Indian Studies at University of Colorado. http://www. The mass suffering that revolution is intended to alleviate will continue as the revolution strangles itself on the altar of ³nonviolence. NONVIOLENCE VERSUS CAPITALISM. 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. Associate Professor in Science. Australia. PACIFISM AS PATHOLOGY. p. 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. more appropriately.uow. Technology & Society at the University of Wollongong. Associate Professor in Science. In every instance.html The consent theory of power Gandhi approached nonviolent action as a moral issue and. To make themselves a clear and apparent danger to the state.au/arts/sts/bmartin/pubs/01nvc/nvcall. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. The new Islamic regime led by Ayatollah Khomeini was just as ruthless as its predecessor in stamping out dissent. p.´ 2.. NONVIOLENCE DO NOT CREATE SUSTAINABLE VICTORIES Brian Martin. while managers of large international banks have little inkling of the suffering caused by their lending policies in foreign countries. Australia. brought into being on the basis of the principles of pacifism.au/arts/sts/bmartin/pubs/01nvc/nvcall. While this approach explains some aspects of the power of nonviolent action.html It is important to note that not all uses of nonviolent action lead to long-lasting. Nonviolent action is not guaranteed to succeed either in the short term or long term. 2002. in which case they will likely be largely ignored by the status quo and self-eliminating in terms of revolutionary potential. 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.edu. Technology & Society at the University of Wollongong. or even a substantial social reorganization. np. NONVIOLENT STRATEGIES ARE UNABLE TO EFFECTUATE CHANGE Ward Churchill. after a short flowering. was crushed in the Beijing massacre.uow. pseudo-praxis). as a means for persuading opponents to change their minds as a result of their witnessing the commitment and willing sacrifice of nonviolent activists.com . Accessed May 17. The 1989 prodemocracy movement in China. 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. it is inadequate on its own. but has little chance when cause and effect are separated.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Accessed May 17.edu. at least a relative degree of nonviolence). the induced starvation of whole populations and the like. 2002. and continued repression in following decades. NONVIOLENCE FAILS IN THE CONTEXT OF MODERN CONFLICTS Brian Martin. 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. The fallacy of such a proposition is best demonstrated by the nazi state¶s removal of its ³Jewish threat. or. Perhaps more worrying are the dispiriting aftermaths following some short-term successes of nonviolent action. http://www. Moral persuasion sometimes works in face-to-face encounters. The aftermath of the Iranian revolution was equally disastrous. in which case they are subject to physical liquidation by the status quo and are self-eliminating in terms of revolutionary potential. NONVIOLENCE VERSUS CAPITALISM. 2001. worthwhile change. 3. In El Salvador in 1944. the successful nonviolent insurrection against the Martínez dictatorship did not lead to long term improvement for the El Salvadorean people. p. Pacifist praxis (or. There was a military coup later in 1944.
serving as an editorial board member of Foreign Policy and International Security magazines. He has written more than one hundred articles in professional journals. those are some big outstretched wings. bald white establishment guy. You might think that Nye is merely another old. All the while. Well versed in foreign policy. after which he returned to Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government to teach. I wouldn¶t want to wash my car while that seagull is flying overhead.wcdebate. and a graduate of the Ph. Joseph Nye. well. And. you¶d sort of be right. Written for the heavy-hitter journals? Check. he asked Nye to serve as deputy undersecretary in charge of Carter's nonproliferation initiatives. to the extent that Nye is reluctant to adopt the ideological fabric of any particular pigeonhole. let¶s look at where Nye has come from in order to understand where he is today. JR. is one of the most influential modern voices in American governance and political science. Nye grew up on a farm in Northwest New Jersey. doing his post-graduate work at Oxford University. The fact that Nye is neither a lifelong government official nor a lifelong academic may have some influence on his thinking. he is also an influential thinker on the domestic scene. Nye was recruited to join his transition team as a consultant on nuclear proliferation. If we are to think of American politics in terms of the left wing and the right wing. After Jimmy Carter won the 1976 presidential election. THE LIFE OF JOSEPH NYE. Jr. He fluttered between governmental work and university work over the next several years. Nye kept up his prolific writing on international security issues. When Cyrus Vance was appointed secretary of state. Speaking of his upbringing and intellectual culture. That¶s not to say there is something in Nye for everyone. and imagine the wings praising Nye as belonging to some giant bird. he is at least apparently willing to try to step outside that rigid intellectual framework as he explores the issues of today. Longtime professor? Check. bald white guy that has worked in the government and worked with universities. He is a Rhodes Scholar. It¶s hard to imagine the left cozying up to him very much. Joseph Nye. Volume 9 Page 92 JOSEPH NYE. 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. 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. and his viewpoints are refreshing in their lack of ideological predisposition. Name a qualification that holds weight in the policy wonk world. However. and Nye¶s likely got it. Jr. he is an intriguing thinker who appears to approach each problem as a fresh challenge. from the Democratic establishment sources like Strobe Talbott and Madeleine Albright to academics of all kinds.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Intellectual chops that are unquestioned? Check. While he is certainly a product of his upbringing and intellectual culture. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Nye is currently Dean of Harvard University¶s Kennedy School of Government. The further right won¶t like his reluctance to use American power in every situation. was born in 1937.D program in government at Harvard. He stayed on in that capacity from 1977-1979. JR. But the guy is a pretty sharp old. 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.com .
Nye coined the marvelously efficient phrase ³soft power´ to refer to those non-military forms of exerting influence -. considering it a ³solution´ that is often actually creates worse problems. particularly in the post Cold War world. his views of power and global politics is much more nuanced than the big-stick diplomats that dominate the scene today.." Nye has said. An emerging power with one billion citizens and a growing economy. Engagement is where a nation continues to interact with the adversarial power through trade. We¶re going to either negotiate with them or flex our own economic muscles (as George W. might turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy. If that is true. given that a weak China would be more given to lash out to shore up its power -. especially in the face of competing and potentially adversarial powers? The answer is a question of containment vs. for example. But if I get you to want what I want. How. "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.always reacting to emerging situations rather than viewing emerging phenomena through a fixed lens. diplomacy and other channels in an attempt to exert influence over the other state. but it is clearly better than the containment strategy . though the Taiwanese don¶t agree) or Japan. Nye is a realist who does seek to advance American interests through the policies he advocates.wcdebate. then the United States must not isolate china. economic. a hawk per se. 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.com . War is an impractical and problematic means of enforcing American interests and desires. If we disagree with Japan¶s trade policy. Containment is a more hawkish strategy. the case of China. It¶s only for a truly dramatic event (like the terrorist tragedy on September 11. Nye is a believer in war as a last resort. for example. then. engagement. Nye is not. 2002. etc. ³If China can be brought into a network of rule-based relations. Nye¶s idea is that a strong China is better for the world community than a weak China. Nye reasons. NYE ON INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS While technically Nye falls under the school of ³realism´ in international relations. "Soft Power is your ability to attract others to get the outcomes you want. China will be a force in the new century. that's the ultimate because it costs me almost nothing but I get the outcomes I want. Nye is usually an advocate of engagement. other measures (such as the multilateral United Nations oil embargo and other sanctions) are really more effective with less of an opportunity cost. despite the United States so-called ³war on terrorism. Volume 9 Page 93 As Nye himself has observed This lack of a fixed plan mirrors his thinking -. While Bush has been threatening to invade Iraq almost constantly for the last year. Will this strategy work? No one can be certain. in fact. 2001) that will of necessity engender a military response. That said. An attempt to treat China as a threat. as should be clear. It would be one of Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.especially against American allies like Taiwan (an island nation that China considers a part of its country. where one uses foreign policy tools to isolate an adversarial power. that's hard power. does one secure American interests.´ Nye wrote an insightful article with a global focus in the Guardian on March 31. Take. That¶s true of most adversaries in addition to traditional allies like Japan. which included the following: Soft power is an important concept to understand. we aren¶t going to invade them. and I don't have to use a carrot or a stick.." This has not changed since September 11. such an evolution may continue.cultural.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Bush did by imposing steel tariffs recently) in response.
that might satisfy the majority of the populace and confer a legitimacy on those institutions they haven¶t seen yet.wcdebate. we should be using our influence in a positive manner. In an article for FOREIGN AFFAIRS. the International Monetary Fund. He is keen on avoiding that kind of situation with other powers. While he surely agrees with virtually none of their prescribed solutions (calling anti-free trade protesters ³demagogues in the street´).´ He sets out a program of action for increasing transparency and democratic accountability for actions at organizations such as the World Bank. and that citizens might have better opportunities to influence those decisions. an establishment journal that some call the most influential in the world.com . even the poor ± he is one of the few mainstream analysts who has attempted to seek out ways to assuage the concerns of protesters. 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. He reasons that if decisions are made out in the open. As an intellectual who lived through the darkest moments of the Cold War. it will help allay the fears of most Americans and other world citizens. especially the radical left.´ he wrote. Rather than isolating other nations.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Nye knows what kind of policies led to increased tensions during that period in history. he at least has attempted to address the flaws in the system some have identified. While Nye recognizes this probably won¶t satisfy everyone. While himself an advocate of a globalized economy and free trade ± believing that the rising tide of economic growth lifts all boats. It should be noted that this falls right in line with his idea of soft power: the ³big stick´ approach is a counterproductive one. NYE ON GLOBALIZATION Neither a demagogue nor a radical. Nye wrote on ³Globalization's Democratic Deficit: How to Make International Institutions More Accountable. such as China. Nye takes the line on globalization that you might expect from an establishment centrist. in his view. and the World Trade Organization.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. critics say.unintended and unpredictable consequences which threaten security instead of enhancing it. critics say. Johnson argued in his 2000 book of the same name.are still trapped by the paradigm of American imperialism in the view of these critics.-Japan relationship. 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. than the U. and in Japan particularly.-Japan arrangement might be just such an example of overstretch. No great radical thought here: everyone from the establishment to Noam Chomsky agrees on that. by this unwieldy and counterproductive arrangement. Take. Critics of this policy.who take a broader view of the American national interest -. is engendering a ³blowback´ -. thus preventing a war that is damaging to American (and world) interests.wcdebate. America keeps itself in the news in a negative manner due to the annual rapes of young Okinawan girls committed by American servicemen. and that Nye misanalyses available data from polls and opinion surveys. critics would say that the lens he uses to evaluate such phenomena is fundamentally corrupted. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.´ No matter how you slice it. His most recent book was just published this year. It is more likely. Just look at Okinawa. it is possible to sketch out the general precepts that Nye values ± and to watch as his thinking continues to evolve. 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. Johnson argues.S. The difference between Nye and his critics is that Nye believes American influence is generally benign or positive. on too many fronts.S. This type of self-justifying behavior. As the old Chinese proverb goes. This lens seeks threats in the world for the United States to solve. you can be sure this scholar will have something to say about it. For example. not enhanced. 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. people looking for a role for the American military (or even ³soft power´) will probably find an indispensable role for it. for example. Further left. They have a common denominator -the term ³power.S. Where there is a foreign policy crisis that affects the United States. Instead. and he continues to write for the most influential periodicals in print and on-line.´ Imperial overstretch is where an empire (like the United States) tries to project power into too many places. There is no better example of this blowback. the distinction between soft power and hard power. 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. liberal internationalist thinkers like Nye -. American credibility is diminished. Even open-minded. 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. security relationship. However. Nye is a staunch defender of the Japan-U. that the arrangement is contributing to ³imperial overstretch´ rather than ³soft power. Nye¶s defense of the U. the United States is going to be extending its influence on the world in a manner designed to advance its interests. 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. you will probably find them. Similarly. if you go looking for enemies. the JPRI and Johnson claim that the American military presence overseas. serves to perpetuate the hegemonic imperialism of the United States just as much as the more realpolitik theorists. Volume 9 Page 95 CRITICS OF NYE Critics of Nye fall into several different categories. The American military bases on the island are the subjects of constant protests from the locals. according to Johnson. even if the ³soft power´ phenomenon is true.com . and any military utility of these bases is speculative at best.
org/jpri/public/crit5. Jr. 2002. Joseph S. Jr.. Joseph S. Joseph S.html.. Nye. WHY PEOPLE DON¶T TRUST GOVERNMENT. Bound to Lead: THE CHANGING NATURE OF AMERICAN POWER. ³Military Deglobalization?´ FoREIGN POLICY (Jan. DOVES AND OWLS: AN AGENDA FOR AVOIDING NUCLEAR WAR. Nye.observer. Joseph S. 2002.html. Jr. ³The US and Europe: Continental Drift?´ INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS (January 2000). Jr. D. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.. Jr..´ CURRENT (September 1999). Visit West Coast Publishing at: www..... ³Redefining America's National Interest: The Complexity of Values.wcdebate. Nye. Jr. Joseph S. Jr. Volume 9 Page 96 BIBLIOGRAPHY Japan Policy Research Institute. co-edited with John D. Joseph S. Joseph S. 3d ed. 1997). 1985). Nye. GOVERNANCE AMID BIGGER. Donahue (Washington. accessed May 5.: Brookings Institution Press. Jr. Nye. 2000. Keohane]. Nye. 2000).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Nye.jpri. http://www.-Feb.. 2002. JPRI CRITIQUE. 1986).. Joseph S. coauthored with Graham Allison and Albert Carnesale (New York: Norton. Joseph S. Jr.co. (New York: Basic Books.00. THE PARADOX OF AMERICAN POWER: WHY THE WORLD'S ONLY SUPERPOWER CAN'T GO IT ALONE (New York: Oxford University Press. http://www. Nye. accessed May 1. Joseph S. Nye.. Zelikow and Davic C.1. THE OBSERVER. (New York: Longman. Nye.3858. Joseph S. August 2001) Nye. BETTER MARKETS (Brookings Institution Press. Jr. 1990). FOREIGN POLICY (spring 2000). ³Globalization: What's New? What's Not? (And So What?)´ [co-authored with Robert O. March 31. democracy. 1999) Nye. Number 1. Joseph S. Joseph S. GOVERNANCE IN A GLOBALIZING WORLD. Jr. HAWKS.com . Jr. Jr. (New York: The Free Press. NUCLEAR ETHICS. Volume V.. co-edited with Elaine Ciulla Kamarck (Hollis Publishing.uk/Print/0.C.4384507. Jr. 2001)..com? Governance in A Networked World. January 2002) Nye. UNDERSTANDING INTERNATIONAL CONFLICTS: AN INTRODUCTION TO THEORY AND HISTORY.. January 1998. Nye. co-edited with Philip D. Joseph S. King (Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
accessed May 1.com . LIBERALISM. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. 2002.. March 31. coming mainly from rich countries. accessed May 1. leadership in the information revolution and soft power will become more important in the mix. Jr. whereas others accept the benefits of international markets but worry that globalization is destroying democracy. GLOBALIZATION SHOULD BE MORE DEMOCRATIC Joseph S.uk/Print/0. those with the most access to multiple channels of communication. 2002. finding some way to address its perceived democratic deficit should become a high priority. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. and soft . Much of Africa and the Middle East remains locked in pre-industrial agricultural societies with weak institutions and authoritarian rulers. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.uk/Print/0.observer. D." For globalization's supporters.. and autonomy. These dimensions of power give a strong advantage to the United States and Europe. this last concern is key. Volume 9 Page 97 SOFT POWER AND DEMOCRACY PROMOTION ARE INCREASINGLY KEY 1. 2. and their coalition has not always been internally consistent.C. Soft power is not simply the reflection of hard power. It is becoming difficult for international economic organizations to meet without attracting crowds of protesters decrying globalization. Quebec City.00. economic. 3.. 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. Imperious policies that utilised Soviet hard power actually undercut its soft power. Jr.4384507. The Vatican did not lose its soft power when it lost the Papal States in Italy in the nineteenth century.observer. But most of the world does not consist of post-industrial societies.remain relevant. Some protesters claim to represent poor countries but simultaneously defend agricultural protectionism in wealthy countries. Seattle. accessed May 2. all three sources of power . India.co. if current economic and social trends continue. They have included trade unionists worried about losing jobs and students who want to help the underdeveloped world gain them. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. Jr. Nye. Conversely. http://www. Nye.co. http://www. SOFT POWER IS MORE IMPORTANT NOW THAN EVER Joseph S. Nye. and that limits the transformation of power. Some reject corporate capitalism. 2002.html.observer. 4. THE OBSERVER. are industrial economies analogous to parts of the West in the mid-twentieth century.html. environmentalists concerned about ecological degradation and anarchists who object to all forms of international regulation. accessed May 1. pluralism.4384507.html. Washington.00. THE OBSERVER..uk/Print/0. FOREIGN AFFAIRS. the Soviet Union lost much of its soft power after it invaded Hungary and Czechoslovakia..military. 2002.wcdebate. 2002. THE OBSERVER. and Brazil. accordingly. Other countries. Prague. http://www. March 31.3858. These protesters are a diverse lot. 2002. Jr.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. PLURALISM AND AUTONOMY INCREASE SOFT POWER Joseph S. The countries that are likely to gain soft power are those closest to global norms of liberalism. such as China. and those whose credibility is enhanced by their domestic and international performance. 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. July/August 2001.org/articles/Nye0701.co. http://www.html. March 31. However. Of all their complaints. And countries like the Canada. SOFT POWER DOESN'T DEPEND ON HARD POWER Joseph S. the Netherlands.00. Nye.foreignaffairs. even though its economic and military resources continued to grow. In such a variegated world.3858. Power in the global information age is becoming less coercive among advanced countries. Dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.3858.4384507.
For one thing.´ June 22. Isolating other countries is bad policy. Democrats looking forward to the year 2000. Clinton defended his trip in a recent speech. Washington's current hysteria about China is largely driven by domestic politics. a crude policy of containment would not work. np. he argued that such a course would make the world more dangerous. EVEN IF CHINA RISES AS A GREAT POWER.wcdebate.. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be. Nye. Jr. In an election year. 2002. np.nyu.nyu. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government. the United States could not now develop a coalition to contain China even if we tried. Jr. Jr. Second. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be. No one knows for certain what China's future will be.html. But it is not true in every case. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be. http://www. Volume 9 Page 98 ISOLATION AND CONTAINMENT DON¶T WORK IN POLICY-MAKING 1. But the current debate between containment and engagement is too simple. which had an expansionist ideology and conventional military superiority in Europe. 1998. It would be a pity if domestic politics caused Americans to lose sight of our long-term strategic interest in East Asia. Ever since Thucydides and the ancient Greeks. while engagement can be reversed if China changes for the worse. Republicans seize on allegations of campaign finance scandals. 1998.html. the House of Representatives rebuked the president over China. historians have known that great wars are often caused by the rise of new powers and the fears such change creates in established powers. 2. p. China lacks the capacity to project military power much beyond its borders. particularly given the fact that nationalism is rapidly replacing communism as the dominant ideology among the Chinese people. accessed May 3. it exaggerates current and future Chinese strength. 4. only China can produce an effective containment policy.html. Nye. http://www. 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. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government. ISOLATING OTHER COUNTRIES IS BAD POLICY Joseph S.nyu. Nye.´ June 22. First. in the new dimensions of military strength in the information age. If we treat China as an enemy now. 2002. but it makes no sense to throw away the more benign possibilities at this point. 2002. p. http://www. containment is mistaken because it discounts the possibility that China can evolve to define its interests as a responsible power. 1998. as a quick survey of Asian capitals makes clear.´ June 22.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. we are guaranteeing ourselves an enemy. http://www. np. Third. accessed May 3.. ³The Case Against Containment: Treat China Like an Enemy and That's What It Will Be.´ June 22. 1998. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government. Moreover. China's neighbors do not see it as a current threat in the way the Soviet Union's neighbors did during the Cold War. Nye. accessed May 3. WE CAN ACCOMODATE THEM Joseph S. Containment is likely to be irreversible.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. p.nyu. split over how to handle human rights during Clinton's trip.. 3. America's edge will continue to persist. Three times in two weeks. accessed May 3.. CONTAINMENT HAS THREE FATAL FLAWS Joseph S. That is the overarching question the United States faces in its relations with China.html. 2002. New powers can be accommodated if they can be persuaded to define their interests in responsible ways.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. Containment has three fatal flaws. In that sense. np. Dean of Harvard¶s Kennedy School of Government. and illegal technology transfers to build campaign issues.com . p. Only if China's future behavior becomes more aggressive could such a coalition be formed. Jr. Disagreeing with those who want to isolate China. I agree.edu/globalbeat/asia/china/06221998nye. A POLICY OF CONTAINMENT SIMPLY WILL NOT WORK Joseph S. Unlike the Soviet Union. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.
was tied to the ability to innovate. Jr. No. More ancient still. 2. as. Fall. (Operation Allied Force.cfm. 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.org/2-2/whunt. But on closer inspection these categories seemed to take on an older dimension.wcdebate. np. 2002. JANUS HEAD Vol.as Operation Desert Storm and Operation Desert Fox presumably demonstrated. His concern is with the present and the way in which the future can be brought to the present. in his phrase. µSoft¶ power was associated with the relative strength of the American economy in relation to its competitors.janushead. Fall. it approximates an anglo-American form of capitalism. np. Mount Allison University. Nye and Owens (1996) examine this from a geopolitical perspective. In short. the state-sanctioned application of force comes under the definition of µhard¶ power. 2. as do the requisite material conditions necessary to sustain this force.cfm. 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. accessed May 1. http://www. a µparadigm shift¶ as some enthusiasts would have it. As such it allows for the free play of creative instincts. quantifiable and direct while µsoft¶ power was subjective. In the study of transnational relations. with coercive measures on one side of the divide and co-operative ones on the other. p. He implies that it is superior to µhard¶ power because it relies on uncommanded loyalties. put many of the beliefs about µsurgical¶ intervention.janushead. an idealized version of what this form of capitalism represents. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and at a greater philosophic remove. NYE¶S SOFT POWER JUST SEEKS TO PROJECT CAPITALISM Wayne Hunt. JANUS HEAD Vol. Mainstream Hollywood movies as well as sophisticated advertising techniques came into this category. The terms originate with Joseph S. in areas where there is not an obvious national interest at stake. This assertion rested on the strategic argument that America¶s capacity for accurate. by contrast. by contrast. 2. Involved as well were competing conceptions of political community. No. direct broadcasting and a high speed µsystem of systems. 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. On the one hand there were those who engaged with the world as it is. Included in this first definition are the ethical values which have been injected into the international arena by a number of mediating institutions. µHard¶ power was objective. Mount Allison University. Nye clearly sees µsoft¶ power as the way of the future. situational awareness of military field operations exceeds that of all other nations combined. 1999.com . The comparative dimension was critically important.org/2-2/whunt. 2. Nye. According to Nye. 1999.cfm. Thus µsoft¶ power can work in tandem with µhard¶ power.. accessed May 1. Fall 1999. Volume 9 Page 99 NYE¶S NOTION OF SOFT POWER IS WRONG 1. 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.. was the contrast between authority and liberty. insisting that it can be a force for good throughout the world. or to be more precise.¶ he argued. p. np. JANUS HEAD Vol. SOFT POWER STILL DEFENDS AMERICAN TECHNOSTRATEGIC INTERVENTION Wayne Hunt. relies on the force of ideas rather than the force of arms. the strategic balance between µhard¶ and µsoft¶ power has been much commented upon. had given the United States a "dominant battlespace knowledge"-. 2. 2002. Allied to this was a bifurcated view of the nature of public action. NYE¶S VIEW OF SOFT POWER IGNORES HISTORY Wayne Hunt.) Assumed here was a technologically-driven view of American intervention. http://www. 2. "a force multiplier in American diplomacy. In Nye¶s writings this longer scholarly tradition goes unremarked upon. http://www. as did advances in communications technology. accessed May 1. Entrepreneurial dynamism. 2. µSoft¶ power.. Mount Allison University. 2002. unquantifiable and indirect. and on the other there were those who looked to what ought to be. No. The second seemed to indicate a larger transformation. 4. p.janushead.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook." Space-based surveillance. real-time.org/2-2/whunt. to the test. it was further assumed.
982 responded. Moreover. increased Chinese potency.S. respondents think that the U. 69% of the Japanese named the Korean Peninsula. NYE SEVERELY MISANALYZES THE DATA ± U. our freedom to do just what we want is limited.S. Security relationship"-40. January 1998. and the fact that the 'hosts. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH. whereas 58% of U. JPRI CRITIQUE." JPRI's reading of the same statistics is far less sanguine. military presence reduced. respondents believed that the Korean Peninsula posed a military threat. so that this should be taken as the basis for decision. These are sizeable percentages. these books are similar. but despite the immense might that that implies. Most likely.org/jpri/public/crit5. in the U. 3.there are more options for our country to follow and more spokespeople to advocate them. Today.com . Volume V. but commentators are notorious hindsight experts.S.S. In Japan. is that Mead has written a valuable book while Nye's effort is feeble. http://www. The latter's little treatise is long on cliches and short on substance.9% of the Japanese and 20. accessed May 5. In some respects. tried to put a positive spin on the poll's results. 1.4% of the Americans want the U.wcdebate. 2002. is in itself a choice. Number 1. 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. so they say. So much for some of those shared common interests. Thus. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." he professed to believe that the poll reveals "Japan and the United States share common interests in the Asia-Pacific region.html. it should tell us that we have become an unwelcome army of occupation rather than of liberation. and this is especially so now that we have entered the Age of Terror and anti-terror. While he acknowledged "some perception gaps between the two countries on military cooperation. the air surrounding Japan's American bases is decidedly unhealthy. in a world with such diverse developments -Muslim hostility. perhaps even a superduper power. JPRI CRITIQUE. Confusing situations produce squadrons of deconfusers. one of the principal architects of last year's revised Security Treaty. That may not have been how it seemed at the time. Volume 9 Page 100 NYE¶S FOREIGN POLICY THINKING IS FLAWED 1. NYE IS WRONG ABOUT COMMON INTERESTS BETWEEN U. aspirations that would not surprise any reasonably studious 15-year-old. B1.1. respondents gave the Middle East top billing. Joseph Nye. In an accompanying article. to put the matter bluntly.S. When respondents were asked which nations or regions they believed might pose a military threat to their own country.org/jpri/public/crit5.952 people were interviewed. 2002. mainly over details for implementing new defense cooperation guidelines. investment adviser. outvote their 'guests' by two to one in calling for a reduction of troops must tell us something.S.S. There is a further statistic that should give both sides pause. accessed May 5.' the Japanese.1. these books definitely differ. The chief difference.S. Security Treaty.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. money) but also soft power (what anybody else calls influence) that counts.S. 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. of course. NYE¶S EFFORTS AT EXPLAINING THE POST-SEPTEMBER 11 WORLD ARE FEEBLE Joseph Losos. Only 26% of the U. Volume V.jpri.jpri. So we get nuggets such as "countries that are well-placed in terms of soft power do better.-JAPAN RELATIONSHIP IS FLAWED Japan Policy Research Institute. Yet we must choose. and professors Joseph Nye and Walter Mead have come forward to explicate our condition and prescribe programs of policy. matters are much harder to figure out. and that if security is the air we breathe (to use Professor Nye's tired analogy). Both make the same basic assumption: The United States is the world's only superpower. 2002. Last November 30. Number 1.html.S. p. or simply drifting from one crisis to the next. for failing to make up our mind. http://www.. uncertain economic trends and many other crosscurrents -. 2." Throughout the book there are tables that propose desirable projects. he argues that it is not just hard power (guns. But in working out our strategy. January 1998. 27. planes. While approximately half of both Japanese and U. Both authors argue that we cannot retreat from most or all of our present involvements. AND JAPAN Japan Policy Research Institute. ST. and a rather bad one. Feb.
came to the defense of small business owners being abused by larger businesses. from the preface to Crashing the Party Among contemporary political figures. and justified his position with painstaking research and eloquent prose. finding these endeavors unsuccessful. "The Safe Car You Can't Buy. After exploring his life. Applied beyond our borders. Nader. would encourage patrons at his restaurant to participate in informal political debates. nourished by public enlightenment and civic participation. he entered Princeton University. Nathra. Nader radicalizes the Jeffersonian tradition of democratic participation. Guided by such values. these values can help us astutely wage peace and address the extreme poverty. By age 14. he wishes that contemporary American politics was full of Ralph Naders. as Harvard Law School didn't offer such courses and the professors were enthusiastically uninterested. there were nearly 50. By 1965. and infectious diseases that threaten to jeopardize directly our own national security as well as that of the rest of the world. of course. assets and conditions are never for sale. from his student activist days to his two presidential runs. but wishes there were others like him. and. Volume 9 Page 101 RALPH NADER Great societies must have public policies that declare which rights. which. An excellent student. He immediately developed an aversion to the corporate orientation of both the courses and the professors' ideologies. He attempted to get the administration to ban the spraying of DDT on campus trees. and then his political project. resigned himself to studying Chinese and preparing for law school. but wishes he were not. environmental perils. in fact. he had expanded the article into a devastating book. and simultaneously brings other radical thought into the mainstream. and more than twice that amount of permanent disabilities incurred in automobile accidents. Ralph Nader had closely read the classic journalistic muckrakers of his day as well as several years of the Congressional Record. we can better use our wealth and power to benefit all Americans. oppression. illiteracy. He had to do most of this on his own.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. I will try to explain his philosophy. is almost uniquely attributable to Nader in American politics: corporations habitually blame consumers for defects in their products. Nathra and Rose had strong opinions about democracy. He researched automobile safety anyway. At the time. Connecticut. and in 1959 published his first article. At age 17. took issue with the assumption. Ralph Nader is one of a kind. can provide wondrous opportunities to improve our country. He has been a thorn in the side of corporate power and governmental corruption for nearly forty years. people who devote their lives to working for reforms and exposing corruption within all power centers. I will conclude with some thoughts on using Ralph Nader¶s writings in debate rounds. Nader believed--and would continue to believe--that car companies simply didn't believe safety was worth the cost. ²Ralph Nader. in a larger sense. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Ralph Nader recalls. just as the rich blame the poor for being poor. where he would have the opportunity to test his father's enthusiasm for public protest. Lebanese immigrants who owned a restaurant in the small town of Winstead.wcdebate. and so on. Nader entered Harvard Law School in 1955. UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED: THE DESIGNED-IN DANGERS OF THE AMERICAN AUTOMOBILE." in THE NATION. NADER¶S LIFE AND WORK Ralph Nader was born in 1934 to Rose and Nathra Nader. The book contained a theme that. Nader wanted to study the legal issues involving food production and automobile safety.000 automobile deaths every year in America. 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. The automobile industry spent millions in "public service" propaganda blaming "the nut behind the wheel" for auto fatalities. This essay will explore both the philosophical foundations and the practical political implications of Ralph Nader¶s work and thought.com . Such policies strengthen noncommercial values. just as all perpetrators tend to blame the victims.
reforms in the Food and Drug Administration." But Jefferson. simply a distrust). It represented a creative attempt to reclaim Jefferson's faith in "the people themselves. taxpayers. virtually none have a serious agenda to strengthen Americans in their key roles as voters. and General Motors' attempt to discredit Nader assured his fame. 10 essay.wcdebate. Because of UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED. when he founded Common Cause.org/history/bollier_chapter_3. procedural complexities and the brute size of the nation would erode the sinews of government accountability.mit." John Gardner. the highest office is the office of citizen." as they came to be called. the people are the ultimate authorities. Throughout the next thirty years. The creation of a citizens' lobby to represent the people as a whole -. Volume 9 Page 102 The book launched the consumer rights movement. Nader took voters away who would have voted for the centrist Democrat Gore. In 1969 he and his comrades formed the Center for Study of Responsive Law. There are two basic philosophical premises behind Nader¶s politics. most contemporary followers of politics identify Nader with his 1996 and 2000 Presidential runs on the Green Party ticket. official secrecy. it is argued. contrary to his predictions. Nader¶s philosophy can be summed up as ³citizen empowerment. author of the famous Federalist No. should corporations be held to the same standard as politicians? There are several sensible reasons for this. consumers."the public interest" -was a bold. Bush in 2000. (http://www. Congress enacted tougher automobile safety laws (eventually culminating. 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. could not have envisioned how moneyed special interests. Of course. (http://bostonreview. While politicians have now made an art of populist symbolism. but. While other activists dedicated themselves to ending the Vietnam War. workers. innovative development in American politics at the time. In fact.. enduring change will require an institutionalized shift of power from corporations and government to ordinary Americans. Nader believes that ordinary people must make both corporations and governments more accountable.2/nader. draws upon the American political tradition in much the same way as any social movement.´ despite the best efforts of conservatives and moderates to paint him as such. By campaigning to the "left" of Gore politically.. Nader has continued to organize grass roots activists against corporate power and irresponsibility. First. have predicted how competing special-interest factions might not yield the public good. which he exploited in order to launch a career of public service and anti-corporate activism.com . the democratic "experiment" is about checking excessive power. fought for increased water quality. This is why it is grossly over simplistic to view Nader as merely a proponent of greater government control. Education and Welfare. A statement Nader made in 1993 sums up his political perspective: What neither Clinton. albeit reluctantly." ²Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter Ralph Nader is not a philosopher.´ and as such. Since the 2000 campaign. he seems to have an inherent distrust of academic intellectuals (not a hostility. Nor could James Madison. and shareholders. a former Secretary of the Department of Health. in a democracy. Many hold him uniquely responsible for Democratic candidate Al Gore's loss to George W. "I know of no safer depository of the ultimate powers of society but the people themselves. Nader's "Raiders. a good government lobby that focused primarily on procedural reforms such as campaign finance reform and government ethics. indistinguishable from typical liberal democrats. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. He is also not a ³radical revolutionary.nader. then. would have a similar idea in 1970.nor most other Democratic Party proponents of change seem to realize is that significant. Why.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. based on their tendency towards theory at the expense of action. 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. in mandatory seat belts and air bags).edu/BR18. some decades later. First and most importantly. of course. This is Jeffersonian democracy at its most extreme. as the quotation below explains. who had written.html) THE PHILOSOPHICAL BASIS OF NADER¶S POLITICS "In a democracy.html) Nader¶s second philosophical premise is that power tends to corrupt unless it is checked by a wide array of citizens. and a plethora of other causes.
and since advertising does not normally reveal the truth about the production process. most recently. rather. the kinds of "checks" which defenders of corporate power claim exist are not really effective. torts and contracts. Term limits would increase opportunity for ordinary citizens to participate in government. sellers need consumers. and frequently more power than. referred to Nader as an anti-capitalist. He does not call for the end of corporations or market economies. a communist. 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. The classic argument is that citizens "vote with their dollars. and the resources extracted from the earth do not belong to any one individual in some a priori sense. Reclaim the public airwaves: Nader is very concerned that radio and television waves. All of these reasons provide sound philosophical justification for an increased watchdog role on the part of concerned citizens.wcdebate. 4. even a Stalinist. "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. They are not heeding the warnings of Justice Louis Brandis and Henry Stimpson and Ella Herue. literally. any elected or appointed political leader. 3. 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. to institutionalized. Second.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. limiting the amount of money people can spend on political campaigns. 1999. and increasing public financing of elections. a socialist. checks must exist on corporate power because the classic individualist metaphors of entrepreneurship and hard work hardly do justice to the corporate juggernauts. which should belong to everyone. He was instrumental in encouraging ³public access´ laws Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Little did I know then that in 1999 this very thing would be occurring. Reform our corrupt campaign finance system: Nader is a strong proponent of viable campaign finance reform. and also increase the number of things people vote for and against. Some less-than-eloquent critics have. He sees the democratic process as little more than a joke if elections come down to who has the most money. p. Finally. Facilitate voter initiatives: Nader wants to make it easier to vote." Aside from the fact that this means people with a million dollars get a million votes. wealth is a social creation: capitalists need laborers. sometimes stretching centuries into the future. WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF LAW AND POLICY. NADER¶S POLITICAL PRINCIPLES ³When I was in law school. He is in favor of more accessible voter registration. Wealth is not generated through the individual actions of individual innovators. Since most corporate decisions are made behind closed doors. We are losing the two great pillars of American law. In fact. we had a joke that at Harvard they teach you how to distort the law of contracts and contract the law of torts. 56 Over the past two presidential races. They can make decisions that have far-reaching environmental and economic effects. over the past few decades. giant corporations. and discourage ³career politicians´ who tend to become cynical and greedy. who warned about corporate law firms losing their independence to corporate clients by becoming mere adjuncts to the corporation's priorities. Ralph Nader has tended to stress the following points as a political program: 1. the multinational status of many corporations makes them. 2. citizens do not have the kind of information that voters in political elections possess. So corporations need to be accountable because corporations could. literally. Nader is none of these. And. and the use of referendums and initiatives to increase public control over the lawmaking process. They can control resources and make large-scale decisions about production and distribution.´ ±Nader. Set term limits for Members of Congress: Term limits allow the system to constantly rejuvenate and reinvent itself. Volume 9 Page 103 Corporations have as much power as. not exist without the collective masses that sustain them. are available to the highest bidder.com .
Democrats.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. but if they are threatened with punishment. Most of these platforms stem from the overarching desire on Ralph Nader¶s part to increase citizen empowerment." (THE BULLETIN'S FRONTRUNNER. Although Nader is not simply a pro-government liberal. but the Green Party's current plans. 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. At present. This is because those people believe that." In Wisconsin. only four of which existed before the 2000 election. To begin with. and more restrictions on what people can do with their money. many people are angry that Nader¶s dogmatic and ³purist´ run for the presidency in 2000 supposedly cost the Democrats the White House. Libertarians generally believe that regulation of the market never yields the results intended. especially liberal Democrats. It places in question Nader¶s whole philosophy of stubborn and dogmatic insistence that only his platform is viable and democratic. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 5. because people respond better to self-management than hierarchical management. Of course. Democrats respond that. OBJECTIONS TO NADER To answer Ralph Nader's underlying political philosophy is difficult. May 21. could frustrate Democrats in Wisconsin and around the country even more. shareholders possess minimal power compared to the day-to-day power of corporate executives. if we hold out for ³everything. worse than nothing!). especially when they are given a chance to participate in the large-scale affairs that determine so much in their lives.'' (VILLAGE VOICE. 2002) Another source of objection to Nader¶s ideas is found in libertarian philosophies. He would like to see much more of this. but also that elitism is desirable. we should settle for checks on that drift rather than try to get everything. The problem here is not merely one election. Create shareholder democracy: Nader wants shareholders in corporations to have greater power over corporate decision-making. higher taxes for corporations. and they are planning to run a candidate for every statewide office in Wisconsin. May 7. The idea is that people respond favorably to carrots (rewards). Regulations fail. One must assert and prove not only that capitalism is desirable. " Ralph Nader's 2000 Green Party presidential run angered many Democrats. say Greens end up hurting the very causes that they support by playing the spoiler in many races. if successful. many people advocate pollution trading permits rather than strong regulations against pollution. and often makes things considerably worse. Bush. including candidate Jim Young for governor. Volume 9 Page 104 requiring cable companies to devote some of their stations to public use.com . they simply find ways around the tough regulations rather than ways to comply with them. He believes that ordinary people are not stupid. Green Party activists say they have learned a lot since 2000.´ we end up with nothing (or. Along the same lines. as some would say in reference to Bush. This is an ongoing argument. Even many non-libertarians favor measures such as tax incentives rather than regulatory schemes to make corporations behave better. 2002) The argument is that we must be willing to compromise. since they alienated the voters who ended up either not voting at all. they were still comparatively closer to those ideals than were the Republicans and George W. Steverman) reports. 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.wcdebate. while Gore and the Democrats may not have been as faithful to Nader¶s ideals as the Greens were. "the Green Party has a dozen chapters around the state. at a time when many citizens seem to be drifting to the right. as recent events demonstrate: The Capital Times (5/21. to accept some of what we want. libertarians claim. Nader supporters responded that the Democrats had themselves to blame for the election loss. his ideas clearly include tougher regulations.
Debaters wishing to explore more about Ralph Nader can do many things: read his books. At the same time. but he argues that.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and not just theoretically attractive. 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. 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.com . Unlike so many of our sources. Ralph Nader continues to make news every day. government is the people. we should keep it in check. in the strongest democratic traditions. either-or. Nader is no fan of capitalism. Debaters may even be able to argue that the ideas of people like Nader are essential to capitalism¶s survival. Greater participation by third parties and citizens¶ movements can help this happen. since such ideas prevent the excesses that fuel the anti-capitalism movement. read commentary about him. Volume 9 Page 105 Overall. IMPLICATIONS FOR DEBATE In my mind. it would be citizens making the news instead of corporate news agencies. since it¶s what we have. 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. However. not merely philosophically. Nader eschews elitism. debaters might argue that political and economic alternatives exist. his stubborn insistence that the people not compromise with those in power cost him a great deal of credibility in 2000. CONCLUSION Ralph Nader is currently America¶s loudest and most passionate advocate of citizen participation and greater corporate accountability. while the other side emphasizes the problems of selfishness. 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. Democracy must be participatory: More than any other idea.wcdebate. After all. Writing about a living person is a lot different than writing about a long-dead philosopher. 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 that we should explore those alternatives by broadening the political arena. Ralph Nader advocates the notion of citizen participation and a breaking down of the distinctions between government and people. One side argues that capitalism is necessary because it maximizes individual freedom. Alternatives to capitalism and globalization can be explored through a widening of the political arena: Conversely. and even update their files with the daily news reports about Nader and his movement. exploitation and imperialism.
Nader. TAMING THE GIANT CORPORATION (New York: Norton.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Ralph.com . 1982). 1976). Robert F. 1973). Ralph. Dan M. 1973).: Prentice-Hall 1972). Volume 9 Page 106 BIBLIOGRAPHY Buckhorn. 1974).wcdebate. Ralph. 1977). 2002). THE RALPH NADER READER (foreword by Barbara Ehrenreich (New York: Seven Stories Press. Burt. Ralph. Ralph. RALPH NADER¶S PRACTICING DEMOCRACY 1997: A GUIDE TO STUDENT ACTION (New York: St. NO CONTEST: CORPORATE LAWYERS AND THE PERVERSION OF JUSTICE IN AMERICA (New York: Random House. Chu. 1996). RULING CONGRESS: A STUDY OF HOW THE HOUSE AND SENATE RULES GOVERN THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS (New York: Grossman Publishers. N. Nader. Ralph. NADER: THE PEOPLE¶S LAWYER (Englewood Cliffs. Martin's Press. Isaac. 1972). Nader. 1997).J. NADER AND THE POWER OF EVERYMAN (New York: Grosset & Dunlap. Ralph. Ralph. 1986). UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED: THE DESIGNED-IN DANGERS OF THE AMERICAN AUTOMOBILE [Expanded ed. Nader. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK (Chicago: Regnery Gateway. Nader. 1975). Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Martin's Press. 1972). Franklin D. CRASHING THE PARTY: TAKING ON THE CORPORATE GOVERNMENT IN AN AGE OF SURRENDER (New York: Thomas Dunne Books/St. THE MADNESS ESTABLISHMENT: RALPH NADER¶S STUDY GROUP REPORT ON THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF MENTAL HEALTH (New York: Grossman Publishers. Gorey. Hays. THE BIG BOYS: POWER AND POSITION IN AMERICAN BUSINESS (New York: Pantheon Books. CORPORATE POWER IN AMERICA (New York: Grossman. Nader.] (New York: Grossman. THE CONSUMER AND CORPORATE ACCOUNTABILITY (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. THE MENACE OF ATOMIC ENERGY (New York: Norton. McCarry. Ralph Nader Congress Project. Ralph. 1975). Nader. CITIZEN NADER (New York: Saturday Review Press. Katherine. Nader. Charles. Nader. 2000).
1986. bailouts. Volume 9 Page 107 EGALITARIAN CRITERIA OF JUSTICE IS BEST 1. 2000. If people think more about how major business executives work. WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF LAW AND POLICY. how would you respond? The criteria for analyzing a just society is very primitive and unclear. THE CRITERIA FOR JUSTICE SHOULD BE THE CONDITION OF THE POOR AND OPPRESSED Ralph Nader. 1999.com . The need for distance grows more insistent every day²the mounting challenges of doomsday weapons. If the oligarchy controls the yardsticks by which we measure progress and justice. Smith¶s ³invisible hand´ of 1776 has been joined two centuries later by the ³invisible atom. limiting their ability to deal with reality. The data one would use is arguably nonexistent. totaling record amounts of consumer debt. 1999.´ and the ³invisible bureaucrat. If someone were to ask how much injustice exists in society.wcdebate.´ the ³invisible gene. schools. debt revocations. then they also control agendas and that is what is happening. and marketing technologies. and genetic engineering are added to the stresses of conventional chemical. CAPITALISM REQUIRES CHECKS AND BALANCES Ralph Nader and William Taylor. what Congress hears is that our economy could not be better. CORPORATE POWER THREATENS THE PUBLIC GOOD 1. 56. mass famines.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 13 Corporate welfare²the enormous and myriad subsidies. then those executives may think harder about how their work affects people. CUTTING CORPORATE WELFARE. 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. Poor or oppressed persons are often downtrodden . If the larger society has a higher expectation level. subsidize companies ripping minerals from federal lands. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. clinics. WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF LAW AND POLICY. 2. 521. Yet. enable pharmaceutical companies to gouge consumers. I think that the level of injustice in our society is partly a reflection of expectation levels. 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. then we become very uneasy with the state of affairs. CORPORATE WELFARE SIPHONS FUNDS FROM OTHER PRIORITIES Ralph Nader. THE BIG BOYS. 2. loan guarantees. If we were to use the people's yardsticks to report on the state of the economy. giveaways. artificial intelligence.´ the ³invisible pollutant. There are a record number of consumers filing bankruptcies and living beyond their means in order to subsist. 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. perpetuate anti-competitive oligopolistic markets. the stock market is up. injure our national security. ELITE CONTROL OF THE CRITERIA FOR JUSTICE ENSURES FURTHER INJUSTICE Ralph Nader. political activist.profits are up. those at the peaks of corporate power need to have their thoughts and actions better known to the public. p. p. discounted insurance and other benefits conferred by government on business²is a function of political corruption. Homelessness and poverty are affecting large numbers of families and people than ever before. 56. tax loopholes. and weaken our democracy.´ the ³invisible currency. Corporate welfare programs siphon funds from appropriate public investments. p. political activist. pampered executives can distance themselves from everyday life. When Alan Greenspan reports to Congress every few weeks on the state of the economy. political activists. political activist.having accepted their condition and resigned. and public utilities are in extreme disrepair. p. Adam Smith knew that the ideology of the ³invisible hand´ was an idealization quite removed from market reality.´ Working at high levels of abstraction. and unemployment is down. We are then at a point where such a question cannot be answered without a firm understanding of our past. he uses oligarchic indicators that imply the economy could hardly be better . production. To introduce more managerial foresight and honesty. inflation is down.
corporate lobbyists roam the corridors before a budget or tax package is to be voted on. water. 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. and make workplaces less safe. AND WORKERS¶ RIGHTS Ralph Nader. and implementation of the trade agreements is designed to foreclose citizen participation or even awareness. private interests inevitably prefer secrecy. Operating under the deceptive banner of ³free´ trade. We¶ll have to close down and move to a country that offers us a more hospitable business climate. abstruseness. THE CASE AGAINST FREE TRADE. ³You can¶t burden us like that.S. the U. GLOBALIZATION HURTS DEMOCRACY AND PROMOTES AUTOCRATIC SECRECY Ralph Nader. and they know all to well from experience that threats of this sort are often carried out. The process by which a policy is developed and enacted often yields insights into who stands to benefit from its enactment. citizenbased initiatives generally succeed only if they generate public debate and receive widespread support. we won¶t be able to compete. GLOBAL FREE TRADE UNDERMINES LOCAL. 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. Volume 9 Page 108 GLOBAL FREE TRADE HAS HORRIBLE IMPACTS 1. 6. in the halls of the U. The Fortune 200¶s GATT and NAFTA agenda would make the air you breathe dirtier and the water you drink more polluted. the North American Free Trade Agreement) and an expansion of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). THE CASE AGAINST FREE TRADE. Every element of the negotiation.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. STATE. and unaccountability: these are the watchwords of global trade policy-making. 3. AND NATIONAL SOVEREIGNTY Ralph Nader. THE CASE AGAINST FREE TRADE. p. An unprecedented corporate power grab is underway in global negotiations over international trade. 1993. By contrast. depress wage levels. The megacorporations are not expecting these victories to be gained in town halls. political activist. 3. THE ENVIRONMENT. Narrow. Enactment of the free trade deals virtually ensures that any local. GLOBALIZATION UNDERMINES HEALTH. for example. or limit their pollution of the air. and land. 1 Citizens beware. and environmental protections won by citizen movements across the globe in recent decades.S. 2. adoption. in a bold and brazen drive to achieve an autocratic far-reaching agenda through two trade agreements. p. They are looking to circumvent the democratic process altogether. the U. provide a decent standard of living to their employees.com . called the Uruguay Round. or even national effort in the United States to demand that corporations pay their fair share of taxes. Secrecy. Congress. political activist. multinational corporations are working hard to expand their control over the international economy and to undo vital health. or even at the United Nations.´ This sort of threat is extremely powerful²communities already devastated by plant closures and a declining manufacturing base are desperate not to lose more jobs. safety. If you do. p.S. It would cost jobs. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.-Mexico-Canada free trade deal (formally known as NAFTA. state offices. political activist. 1993.wcdebate. will be met with the refrain. state. 1993. Capitol.
³Public interest´ advocacy has become one of the signs of our times. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. America would become a more centrally governed and less free.wcdebate. Ralph Nader seeks nothing less than a transfer of power in America. Nader and his groups seek a greater politicization of life in America. 1982. p. In sum. a new elite of un-elected. which has been and remains in vogue in Western thought. NADER¶S ADVOCACY DESTROYS INDIVIDUAL CHOICE AND THE DEMOCRATIC PROCESS Dan M. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Burt. state. economic. ³PUBLIC INTEREST´ ADVOCACY UNDERMINES DEMOCRACY Dan M. President of Capital Legal Foundation. NADER¶S POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY WOULD CULMINATE IN TOTALITARIANISM Dan M. Testimony is often given on behalf of the ³public interest´ before congressional committees and federal regulatory panels. 1982. political tradition of the last 200 years. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. and it does not square with the common view of the nature of the public interest. SEC. with its heavy reliance on individual choice. Burt. and their ideology would have immense impact on political and economic activities and society as a whole. ³Public interest´ advocates would become new power-brokers. Our diverse. in turn. Government would have an especially large influence on the functioning of the economy and. where more decisions will be made by a few to affect the many. Burt. But it is a radical departure from U. This most often takes the form of intervention in the regulatory processes of the federal. President of Capital Legal Foundation. the groups elect to fight the issues out before the courts. p. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. professional ³public interest´ advocates would acquire a substantial amount of power to make decisions in both the private and public sectors. In some cases. 135 In place of our system of modified and limited individual choice and private enterprise²we certainly recognize and welcome much of what FDA. President of Capital Legal Foundation.com . and seek to change it. President of Capital Legal Foundation. And it has been and would be a government they run. government would probably become more authoritarian or even totalitarian by encroaching more on our private lives as workers. This is a distinct political ideology. employers.´ 2. away from the individual and into the hands of the government and ³public interest´ groups. In this regard. 1982. 8. 2. p. In other words. individualistic nation. Burt. 20 What is clear is that Mr. and social system.´ ³Public interest´ groups seek an alternative means of influencing decision-making in both government and industry. Nader and his network distrust the current political and economic system in the United States. is not considered adequate to achieve the ³public interest´ or the ³common good. and the economic votes we make every day with our money at the cash register. p. ABUSE OF TRUST: A REPORT ON RALPH NADER¶S NETWORK. They do not put much faith in the democratic process that has been America¶s unique tradition for the past 200 years²that is. on our daily lives. NADER¶S ADVOCACY TRANSFERS POWER FROM INDIVIDUALS TO ELITES CLAIMING TO SPEAK IN THE ³PUBLIC INTEREST´ Dan M. and local governments. 20 Instead. or in the investment markets. 1982. and consumers.´ NADER IS ELITIST AND TOTALITARIAN 1. the political votes we cast regularly at the ballot box. Volume 9 Page 109 NADER¶S PHILOSOPHY HURTS DEMOCRACY 1. Mr. de-centralized political. EPA and similar agencies do²the ³public interest´ groups would appear to want more politicization of life in America. 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. at the bank.S.
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. He complimented rightist politician Patrick Buchanan." The campaign will have similar themes to the effort of four years ago. If you look for a unifying theme in all these causes.000 votes and finished in fourth place. healthiest. the product of freedom to acquire and strive and create for personal gain. most prosperous nation in the world. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. But it is less well known that he was equally adamant in opposing a bill removing barriers to Africa's exports -.a move that Africans themselves welcomed. October 22. A-19. 2000. because insurance companies have to say no to some doctors sometimes. markets.it grants corporations some legal status as individuals. Cohen. THE HARTFORD COURANT. the one that ended apartheid.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. because chemical companies have to put their gunk somewhere. columnist. 3. NADER¶S OPPOSITION TO TRADE AGREEMENTS HURTS DEVELOPING NATIONS Paul Krugman. To block opportunities for corporate profit he is quite willing to prevent desperately poor nations from selling their goods in U. Professor of Economics at MIT. NADER IS A NATIONALIST WHO EXPLOITS AMERICANS¶ FEAR OF IMMIGRANTS Patrick O¶Neill." 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 presented his campaign as a "pull to the left" for the Democratic Party. had it right when he characterized the Nader reason-for-being as "irritating others for the public good. The North American Free Trade Association treaty means "we're exporting jobs--probably about 350. or any corporation. Nader's 1996 campaign was marked by nationalist themes. July 25. 2000.000 to 400. Professor of Economics at MIT. Those demonstrations were led by union officials and liberal and environmental activists. March 6. in his first major speech after leaving Congress. Michael Kinsley. Ralph Nader published an article attributing those same shootings to -. Everyone knows about Nader's furious opposition to global trade agreements.like the laws of every market economy -. NADER PRACTICES A RHETORIC OF FEAR AND OVERSIMPLIFICATION 1. 2000. Because multinational corporations go their amoral way. Nader says he will concentrate on "democracy. in 1996 he "received nearly 700. but which Nader denounced because of his fear that African companies would be "run into the ground by multinational corporations moving into local economies. because -. Newt Gingrich disgusted many people when.) Similar fears led Nader to condemn South Africa's new constitution. now vying for the Reform Party presidential nomination. That's the problem with Ralph. concentrated corporate power and the excessive disparities of wealth. NADER¶S ANTI-CORPORATE RHETORIC OVERSIMPLIFIES THE ISSUES Paul Krugman. PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. although limiting his campaign spending to under $5.I'm serious -. 2." reads the statement. must be bad for the world. the Nader campaign intends to raise $5 million dollars. Volume 9 Page 110 NADER¶S ANTI-CORPORATE AGENDA IS UNDESIRABLE 1. Nader now apparently believes that whatever is good for General Motors. At times Nader's hostility to corporations goes completely over the edge. p. THE MILITANT. columnist. p. C3. p. p. or Pfizer. saying he has "learned a lot in the last few years about corporate power. He isn't like you and me. who put forward economic nationalist slogans that drew favorable comment from Buchanan.corporate influence." (Most African countries would be delighted to attract a bit of foreign investment. July 25. But several days before Gingrich spoke. 2000. In 2000. prevent patients from getting drugs that might give them a decent life and prevent a moderate who gets along with business from becoming president. According to the February 21 Green Party news release announcing Nader's bid. he blamed liberalism for the Columbine school shootings." At the same time. editor of Slate. A-19.000. we are the happiest.wcdebate.S." But you can't create a public good until you recognize the reality of a private good. NADER IGNORES THE CONTRIBUTIONS CORPORATIONS MAKE TO OUR PROSPERITY Laurence D.com . he said.000" to Mexico. it seems to be not consumer protection but general hostility toward corporations." Nader will invoke "the message of last year's Seattle demonstrations against the WTO. 2.
After all.´ Just one problem: Guinier had never advocated quota-based hiring. many places in the North). So the first wave of voting rights laws dealt with these Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. GUINIER¶S THOUGHT Guinier doesn¶t just talk about affirmative action ± far from it. the right wing said. 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. we define you by no more than three or four words-in my case. if you can¶t vote. the politicians who control the nomination process preferred to keep the tensions under wraps. Voting rights are the essential element of a democracy. it isn¶t a true democracy to you. we get to inspect the ideas of one of the most forward-looking thinkers on race in America. right? During and prior to the Civil War. For them. And even then and immediately thereafter. 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. 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. As for the second proposition -.S. In fact. That¶s not just me being partisan.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. places dealt with the issue in a straightforward manner: if you were black. Guinier was unjustly denied her rightful post as Assistant U.´ Guinier¶s version of affirmative action. alliterated metaphor that served partisan purposes at the time. a ³quota queen. but it was a very useful. 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. As the woman herself said in a subsequent interview on the topic: ³Because we are in a sound-bite culture. Period.´ Guinier continues to teach law at Harvard Law School. though. two: Quota Queen. That didn¶t stop the hounds once they had been released. Let¶s start with what white citizens of this country take as a given: voting rights. 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. she OPPOSED quotas ± they went contrary to her notion of ³confirmative action. She examines all kinds of issues relevant to racial politics in this country. or create new forms of discrimination? These are questions without easy answers. For understandable political reasons. to be fair. She was. and publish books. it wasn¶t until the mid-1960s that African Americans had the right to vote. In the South (and. Attorney General for Civil Rights because. they claimed. including slavery.´ 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. Volume 9 Page 111 LANI GUINIER Lani Guinier was unjustly passed over in one of the most highly publicized confirmation hearings ever.com . Guinier's intellectual honesty made her politically unacceptable.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.wcdebate. you didn¶t get to vote. write manifold articles on the subject of race in the United States. such a right was not truly meaningful. Now. It had nothing to do with what I had written.
You vote for Jesse Ventura because he says he¶ll battle special interests. Particularly as it became easy to use computer technology to draw district lines. Again. Plus. it has another value: an instrumental value. and created a right to select representatives of choice. Cracking and stacking are more complicated. What is the solution? Some suggested establishing "majority-minority" districts so that minorities would be assured of candidates that reflected their interests. if you¶re one of the 90 percent of African Americans that voted for Al Gore.mostly Republicans -. and a slew of representatives who owe nothing to minority constituents. the votes of minorities can be trumped by the White Folks Vote.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.´ The other problem. 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. Harvey Gantt. racial minorities are so few in number that candidates can simply disregard them. We had to deal with it in the LAST presidential election. and they are regularly outvoted. it takes all kinds). if the right to vote represents full citizenship. You vote for Ralph Nader because he says he¶ll challenge corporate rule. this ³turned out to be something between a very bad thing and a disaster for racial minorities. Volume 9 Page 112 ³formal exclusions´ from the franchise: they FORCED states to allow Black Americans to vote. The problem is that in other districts. we ought to defend it for minorities. And depending on how old there are. The only question was how to actualize this? In the past. this is far from an issue we¶ve left behind. indeed. but they have the same result: the legislature has the "right number" of minority representatives. 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.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. if you go to vote. The Voting Rights Act Amendmnts of 1982 recognized that this was a problem.wcdebate. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 made sure of that. cracking. Hence. You sue your vote to elect people who will do the things that you want done.com . and stacking. Helms despite the fact that the Black man who keeps running against him. Something between a very bad thing and a disaster. minorities often have a problem electing what voting rights law calls "representatives of their choice. alternatively. people -. The techniques are known in the voting rights field as packing. is an excellent candidate who is notably NOT insane. and you headed to the polls in Florida. your parents (and certainly your grandparents) might remember a time when Black Americans didn¶t even have the lip-service right to vote. is that concentrating minorities in certain districts means that OTHER districts can effectively IGNORE their interests altogether. The result is that you get one minority representative. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. You vote for Jesse Helms because you¶re a psychotic racist (hey. of course. whites have gerrymandered districts so that minorities couldn¶t overwhelm the white majority and elect candidates of choice. As Tushnet notes. you can guarantee the election of a minority representative by packing as many members of that minority as possible into a single district. For example. 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.´ After all. So. The thing is. though. white people keep electing the aforementioned Mr.
The second reason is that those are the principles the Republic was founded on. or political) ± because they may be the MAJORITY in four years. They will vote to advance their own interests. what is a filibuster but a minority veto ± enacted by a minority of one. even though he spent 30 years trying to screw them sideways ± in a close election. usually Ted Kennedy? GUINIER AND THE TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY Now. 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. Some involve changing the internal decision-making structure of state and local legislatures. Total majority rule. And nice as that sounds. why don¶t poor people just vote to take all the money from rich people through taxation? Well. That includes people living in a democracy. (³Give us labor provisions in the FTAA bill. People are self-interested. So. not all of which involve modifying affirmative action. There would be problems with identifying these policies. but there¶s another reason. Reagan was re-elected primarily with the votes of traditional Democrats. This is one major reason both parties talk about bipartisanship: they want to appeal to voters of the other political party. That¶s why we have three branches of government ± to stop excesses and abuses of power by those who reach past their intended authority. economic. every interest group is up for schmoozing ± even traditional enemies.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. but because it¶s just as integral to the thinking of Lani Guinier as anything else. stupid things. or we¶ll filibuster and block the bill which brings the pork barrel project to your district. There are a couple of reasons why. It could provide them a valuable commodity (a small voting block) where they could trade votes in exchange for other favorable legislation. When you¶re in power. Guinier borrows the title of her book from James Madison. there needs to be some check on that abuse. and you¶ll be in big trouble. legislators can get concessions on another. whose theory of representative democracy appealed to "the principle of reciprocity. there¶s the well-established propaganda system. for one thing. but let¶s review some of the high points here. you don¶t want to totally ignore the minority (whether racial.´) After all. and that includes affirmative action. every vote counts. by merely threatening a filibuster on a certain bill or resolution. 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. Hence. it doesn¶t work that way. Volume 9 Page 113 Enter Lani Guinier. 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. Guinier has many ideas for transformation of the current situation. Similarly. For example. of course ± but even requiring a super-majority on all legislation might help minority constituencies. some might say there is nothing more democratic than majority rule. for example.com . Oregon did in the 1990s) or to do other unconstitutional. 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.wcdebate. the tribes Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.´ This topic is covered in great detail in the Madison essay. Since every vote counts. 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. Sound radical? Ever heard of the filibuster in the Senate? That¶s an example of how.
Guinier writes: So a policy of ³confirmative action´ would include economics as a decision calculus. health care projects. 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.wcdebate. to revamp their admissions policies based on various factors: Practicing confirmative action. regularly review and seek feedback on its admissions program. The best strategy lies in other means. and so poor whites are also considered in programs like jobs and university admissions. This doesn¶t always happen that way.she believes a quota of minorities taken as representatives of the minority races as a whole will not truly give minorities a fair chance. More often. Guinier asks. Guinier's political views in no way support her designation as a "quota queen. has thoughts I feel are worth considering: Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. seeing what is working and what is not. SOME CRITICS Critics of Guinier fall into basically two categories: the conservative and the liberal. with its specific mission in mind. Stephen Steinberg. crush their economic infrastructure. rather than just in name. Her rationale for these reforms is simple. etc. after all.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. presumably. though. and neither race nor class should not be a determining factor in discussions. This is your basic Ward Connerly school of thought. for example. if you need a 40-hour a week job and/or don¶t get enough to eat. college administrators. You might be surprised. give feedback on. but many liberals consider Guinier a fairly ³conservative´ (in the sense of being careful and wary to offer wild. Volume 9 Page 114 don¶t want to blast Gorton with both barrels when he¶s in office. we need to admit that those merit-based criteria exclude certain people ± you¶re not going to get as good grades as other kids. and is relatively easy to understand. However. Guinier recognizes this. programmatic change) thinker. (He tried to take away their fishing rights. a left-wing critic of Guinier. 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. 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." Guinier's books and law review articles support only one conclusion -. GUINIER AND AFFIRMATIVE ACTION As noted above. and abrogate their constitutionally guaranteed treaty rights). That means includes continually updating affirmative into new policies that Guinier calls ³Confirmative Action. their interests will be better served by legislators. Hence. The conservative critics are relatively easy to understand: we should all be evaluated on an individual basis. people like Gorton just ignore their traditional enemies altogether ± or worse yet. each institution would. There is a reason. that Indian tribes hate him so much. This is a flaw Guinier finds in traditional affirmative action. That¶s why she¶s so concerned with voting rights reform: if minorities can be represented in fact.com . 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. try to actively undermine their interests.´ This includes modifying preference policies to consider class ± so minorities that are truly disadvantaged get the most preferences. If admissions policies and employment opportunities are truly to be merit-based.
Volume 9 Page 115 CONCLUSION Whether you agree or disagree with Lani Guinier¶s ideas -. economically viable future should check out her work.wcdebate. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. People that are interested in building a more racially just.and whether you disagree with her from the left or the right ± you have to admit her ideas are provocative.com .West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.
March 1991. http://bostonreview. Lani. http://bostonreview. Guinier. New York: Simon & Schuster. Lani. Lani.edu/BR25. Lani. Lani Guinier's Certainty. http://bostonreview. BOSTON REVIEW. p." MICHIGAN LAW REVIEW. 2002. December 200/January 2001. BOSTON REVIEW June/September 1994. Guinier.6/steinberg.html. Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute. "President Clinton's Doubt." NEW YORK UNIVERSITY REVIEW OF LAW AND SOCIAL CHANGE 24. No. Lani. Ward. "Don't Scapegoat the Gerrymander. accessed May 1.edu/BR19.6/connerly. 1998. Guinier. Guinier. "Lessons and Challenges of Becoming Gentlemen.html. Lani..wcdebate. 1998. "The Triumph of Tokenism: The Voting Rights Act and the Theory of Black Electoral Success. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. 1994. Foreword to REFLECTING ALL OF US: THE CASE FOR PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION. 1998. Boston: Beacon. edited by J. Jr. 505525.com . 2002. 1-16. 89. p. Lani. p. January 8.mit.html.3/tushnet. Tushnet. THE TYRANNY OF THE MAJORITY: FUNDAMENTAL FAIRNESS IN REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY. Lani. accessed May 1. 2002.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. by Robert Richie and Steven Hill. Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitutional Law at Georgetown University Law Center. Stephen. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 36-37." THE NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE. 1077-1154. 1995. 1998. Volume 9 Page 116 BIBLIOGRAPHY Connerly." In REBELS IN LAW: VOICES IN HISTORY OF BLACK WOMEN LAWYERS. Smith." KENTUCKY LAW JOURNAL 86. Steinberg. Guinier. Guinier. Mark. "Reframing the Affirmative Action Debate. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW. LIFT EVERY VOICE: TURNING A CIVIL RIGHTS SETBACK INTO A NEW VISION OF SOCIAL JUSTICE. p.edu/BR25. accessed May 1.mit.mit. Guinier. C. Vol. December 200/January 2001. Guinier. 1999. 5. New York: Free Press.
but we brand as "divisive" and "radical" the idea of providing similar remedies to include black Americans. I wrote instead about the political exclusion of the black minority in local. about the need sometimes to disaggregate the majority to ensure fair and effective representation for minority interests. The problem is that Guinier is an opponent of quotas to ensure representation of minorities. The difference is that the minority that I used to illustrate my academic point was not.com . 4. GUINIER IS THE OPPOSITE OF A ³QUOTA QUEEN´ Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas . p. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www." In reality. two conservative columnists. THE MEDIA ADMITS THEY ARE BIASED AGAINST GUINIER Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas . a Reagan-era Justice Department official.which appeared on the day her nomination was withdrawn (6/3/93) -.on June 4. Lally Weymouth wrote: "There can't be democracy in South Africa without a measure of formal protection for minorities." a buzzword that almost killed the 1991 Civil Rights Act. The racially loaded term combines the "welfare queen" stereotype with the dreaded "quota. Volume 9 Page 117 GUINIER¶S VIEWS AREN¶T BAD: THE MEDIA LIES TO US ABOUT THEM 1. p. Nor did I write. p. CONSERVATIVES ARE HYPOCRITICAL WHEN THEY CHALLENGE GUINIER¶S VIEWS Lani Guinier. In sharp contrast to her media caricature as a racial isolationist. Apparently. after the nomination had already been killed -. two votes' remedies. No one who had done their homework seriously questioned the fundamentally democratic nature of "my ideas. When the New York Times finally devoted an article to her views. Another media tactic against Guinier was to dub her a "quota queen. George Will and Lally Weymouth. some of us feel comfortable providing special protections for wealthy landlords or white South Africans. the white minority in South Africa. July/August 1993. One of the most prominent themes of the attack on Guinier was her supposed support for electoral districts shaped to ensure a black majority -. as it was for Lally Weymouth. 9-10/92) because it "isolates blacks from potential white allies" and "suppresses the potential development of issue-based campaigning and cross-racial coalitions. July/August 1993." But once the stereotype was affixed to her. 3. who after centuries of racial oppression are still excluded. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. 3. the woman known as the 'quota queen' claimed she did not believe in quotas.there still was not a single quote from any of her writings." An entire op-ed in the New York Times -. July/August 1993." a phrase first used in a Wall Street Journal op-ed (4/30/93) by Clint Bolick. county and municipal governing bodies in America. Clinton's nominee as assistant attorney general for civil rights." reporter David Margolick wrote -"everyone" including himself. both wrote separate columns on the same day in the Washington Post (7/15/93).a process known as "race-conscious districting. EXTRA!. many journalists preferred to simply repeat the charges of ideologically motivated opponents. color-coded ballots.wcdebate. 3. EXTRA!. In an article in the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review (Spring/89). July/August 1993. p. How could Guinier's positions be distorted so thoroughly? Part of the problem was simple laziness: Rather than doing research into Guinier's record. In the media smear campaign against Lani Guinier. Professor of Law at Harvard University. THE MEDIA DISTORTS GUINIER¶S VIEWS TO THE EXTREME Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas . her views were not only distorted. 3." In my law review articles I had expressed exactly the same reservations about unfettered majority rule. Guinier is the most prominent voice in the civil rights community challenging such districting. but in many cases presented as the exact opposite of her actual beliefs.was based on the premise that Guinier was in favor of "segregating black voters in black-majority districts. "Almost everyone is relying on reconstructions by journalists and partisans.Yet these same two journalists and many others condemned me as anti-democratic. she stated that "the enforcement of this representational right does not require legislative set-asides. EXTRA!. as George Will did. injecting further distortions into the process. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. tyrannical majorities can best be prevented by the multiplication of minority interests. electoral quotas or 'one black. EXTRA!." columnist Ray Kerrison wrote in the New York Post (6/4/93). Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. she has criticized race-conscious districting (Boston Review. he admitted in an interview with Extra!. 3." Indeed. rather than to the political firestorm that raged around them -.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. so the majority at any moment will be just a transitory coalition of minorities. about the minority of wealthy landlords in New York City." 2. praising ideas remarkably similar to mine." George Will wrote: "The Framers also understood that stable. there was seemingly no way she could dispel it: "Unbelievably.
In this fuller accounting of the democratic values of publicly supported institutions. can be chronicled with the proper instruments.com ." But more important. Many commentators painted Guinier as a racial polarizer who implies that "only blacks can represent blacks. in other words.minerscanary. ADDRESS DELIVERED BEFORE THE NATIONAL URBAN LEAGUE¶S STATE OF AMERICA 2000 CONFERENCE. July/August 1993.´ Merit becomes a forward-looking function of what a democratic society needs and values rather than a fixed. June 14.shtml. 2002. p. Harvard Law School. Dynamic merit involves a commitment to distribution of opportunity not only at birth but also through one¶s life.wcdebate. accessed May 1. each of us is then obligated not only to succeed as individuals. It is contextual and resistant to standardized measurement. but to ³lift as we climb. And she was repeatedly charged with believing that only "authentic" blacks counted. 3. AND SHOULD INCLUDE POOR WHITES Lani Guinier. Merit. That focus. ³CONFIRMATIVE ACTION´ IS A COMMITMENT TO DEMOCRACY Lani Guinier. 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. becomes future-oriented and dynamic. Volume 9 Page 118 LANI GUINIER¶S IDEAS ARE GOOD FOR MULTIRACIAL DEMOCRACY 1. np. like one¶s family tree or family assets. p. 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." as George Will put it (Newsweek. 6/14/93). If we are to move beyond the present polarization in a manner consistent with the commitments to fairness and equality that both positions endorse. 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. 2000. accessed May 1. Professor.minerscanary. ADDRESS DELIVERED BEFORE THE NATIONAL URBAN LEAGUE¶S STATE OF AMERICA 2000 CONFERENCE. I tentatively call this a process of confirmative action. In other words. Our commitment to democratic values benefits from studies like the one at the University of Michigan. who carry a commitment to contributing back to those who are less fortunate. http://www. and what constitutes fairness for all. she was not endorsing the concept of authentic representation. describing it as a "limited empowerment tool. THE CHARGES OF REVERSE RACISM AGAINST GUINIER ARE LUDICROUS Rob Richie and Jim Naureckas . np." Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.org/mainart/confirmative_action. 2000. A first step is to view ³merit´ as a functional rather than generic concept. we must more carefully explore how to measure and what to call merit. It requires modesty in our beliefs about what we can measure in human beings. even as it demands clarifying and explicitly stating our institutional objectives. AFFIRMATIVE ACTION AIDS DEMOCRACY. 3.shtml. p. which showcase the experience of people of color and many women. Professor. 2. quantifiable and backwards-looking entity that. Harvard Law School. But in a Michigan Law Review article (3/91). while keeping firmly in mind the democratic purposes of higher education and the specific mission of most institutions of higher education. June 14. legitimacy and power base is the black community. It is changing and manifests itself differently depending on how you look at it. In doing so.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. she was critiquing it. between claims of individual desert based on past opportunities and individual contributions based on future societal needs. http://www. in a multiracial democracy. in turn. 2002. EXTRA!. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. Guinier stated that "authentic representatives need not be black as long as the source of the authority. allows us to reconsider the relationship between individual merit and operational fairness.org/mainart/confirmative_action.
is develop procedures which will allow all of us to work together to find the policies which will do that.mit. http://bostonreview. GUINIER¶S IDEAS LEAD TO RACIAL POLARIZATION Ward Connerly.edu/BR25. Thus. 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. SORTING PEOPLE INTO CATEGORIES AS GUINIER DOES IS RACIST Ward Connerly. 2002.com .have mistakenly seen politics as a zero-sum game. 2002.3/tushnet. Its efforts to create a student body with the right mix of skin colors have polarized it into two schools. December 200/January 2001.6/connerly. and that those failures must result from a more deeply-rooted racism than Guinier is willing to acknowledge. she proposes. It is a long and sordid history. The English Department is also enjoying a renaissance.html. in which what one group wins necessarily comes at the expense of another group. is how optimistic and fundamentally conservative she is. The next step in fulfilling America¶s promise is to create a colorblind state. Their prescription of emphasizing race anew merely resurrects the worst of our history.wcdebate. 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. Unfortunately. accessed May 1. BOSTON REVIEW.html. Caucasian. to see Susan Sturm and Lani Guinier propose "shift[ing] the terrain of the debate.6/connerly. according to Guinier's optimistic vision. Sturm and Guinier ignore this fundamental reality. BOSTON REVIEW. free black. 2. American governments at all levels have sorted us into categories based on our skin color: slave. 2002. All we need to do.edu/BR25.html. etc. public policy could generate gains for everyone. Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute. BOSTON REVIEW. Hispanic. Nor do we lack for evidence about how their proposal would work. accessed May 1. EMPIRICALLY. GUINIER IGNORES THAT RACISM IS TOO DEEPLY ROOTED FOR HER PROPOSALS Mark Tushnet.that society is not so racially polarized. it was surprising.edu/BR19. Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute. 3. octoroon.mit.6/connerly. BOSTON REVIEW June/September 1994.html. accessed May 1. City College¶s experiment has failed. In 1970.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. one for which we should all be ashamed. people -. and refreshing. While the City College administration shared their concerns about racial equality and merit.mit. What is most striking about Guinier's work. Volume 9 Page 119 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WON¶T HELP SOLVE RACISM OR PROMOTE DEMOCRACY 1. City College¶s School of Engineering remains one of the best schools in the country. For its entire history. http://bostonreview. December 200/January 2001. Students admitted based on their prior academic performance continue to succeed. 4. Both departments¶ alumni often proceed to top graduate programs in the country. the history of City College¶s experiment highlights the inherent problems in sacrificing merit on the altar of race." Sturm and Guinier implicitly concede that preference proponents cannot carry the day while traditional measures of merit prevail. Instead.edu/BR25. The substantive failures of policy can be eliminated by following the indirect strategy of using the right procedures. their argument is not at all new. accessed May 1.perhaps most particularly whites -. GUINIER¶S IDEAS WERE TRIED AND FAILED 30 YEARS AGO Ward Connerly. http://bostonreview. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute. attracting topflight students from around the world. Thus. For her. Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitutional Law at Georgetown University Law Center. given these tensions. Indian. Unfortunately. December 200/January 2001. http://bostonreview.apparently in the face of the failures of public policy -.mit. we ought to believe -. 2002.
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. NOT GIVE UP AS GUINIER DOES Stephen Steinberg. aside from the advantages that derive from better schooling. GUINIER¶S IDEAS ARE IMPRACTICAL Stephen Steinberg. The problem. accessed May 1. is that they implicitly advocate these reforms as a surrogate for affirmative action policy. At first blush. http://bostonreview. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW." 2. Affirmative action is assailed by critics as violating cherished principles of "merit. two troubling questions arise. the "testocracy" that is used to assess merit is neither fair nor functional. Sturm and Guinier declare that "it is time to shift the terrain of debate. especially when the people doing the evaluations are white and male and the people being evaluated belong to stigmatized groups.6/steinberg.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook." 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.6/steinberg." as Sturm and Guinier write in their opening sentence. Volume 9 Page 120 GUINIER¶S IDEAS WILL NOT BE EFFECTIVE 1. have the resources to pay for expensive prep courses. 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. 3. December 200/January 2001. http://bostonreview. On closer examination.html.edu/BR25. 2002. They may tell themselves that they are driven by realpolitik. 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. 2002.wcdebate. don¶t fix it. "if it ain¶t broke.mit. though.com . Sturm and Guinier could have concluded that the case against affirmative action is specious and therefore affirmative action should be upheld. which has already eviscerated affirmative action through a series of decisions. rather than scores on "paper-andpencil" tests. affirmative action has been under sustained assault. 2002.edu/BR25. http://bostonreview. studies have consistently found that performance appraisal ratings of women and people of color are prone to bias. would their proposed reforms of the selection process. However. 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. Indeed. is now poised to deliver the coup de grace. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Against this background. Nor will Sturm and Guinier get the concessions they are bargaining for. The problem is that "for more than two decades. Therefore±alas. 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. 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. December 200/January 2001. they seem resigned to the fact that the Supreme Court. accessed May 1. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE GUINIER¶S PROPOSALS WOULD WORK Stephen Steinberg. here the syllogism runs into trouble. Instead Sturm and Guinier make a case for overhauling the selection process that evaluates candidates for jobs and college admissions.html. THE SOLUTION IS TO MEND AFFIRMATIVE ACTION. this strategy may appear to be a sensible concession to political reality. accessed May 1. First. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW. there are compelling arguments for abandoning standardized tests that favor privileged groups who.mit." 2.html. Is this not the lesson of Bill Clinton¶s ill-fated proposal to "end welfare as we know it"? 3. author of The Ethnic Myth and Turning Back: The Retreat from Racial Justice in American Thought and Policy BOSTON REVIEW.mit. December 200/January 2001.6/steinberg. To be sure. As the saying goes. 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. even if enacted.edu/BR25. Though they do not say so explicitly.
She argues that social revolutions involve two coincidences. She is involved in the community around her not only through her books but by contributing to local newspapers. 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. She then uses her knowledge of history to create a more generalizable framework and allow readers to move beyond particular cases. basic transformations of a society¶s state and class structures. involve class-based revolt but not structural change. than other types of societal change. 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. Skocpol and Sociologists for Women in Society (SWS) filed charges against Harvard with the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (E. Skocpol a researcher. I will end with a general discussion of the importance of Skocpol¶s work for Lincoln-Douglas debaters. In addition to all of this responsibility she still finds time to be what she calls her readers to be. shows Skocpol. Volume 9 Page 121 THEDA SKOCPOL Theda Skocpol is the Victor S. in fact. She now has tenure in both Sociology and the Department of Government at Harvard. professor and well-known author.E. by nature. STATES AND SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS. social policies and revolution through historical and comparative methods. an active citizen. 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. Dr. Theda Skocpol defines social revolutions as. ³rapid. She received her Bachelor¶s degree from Michigan State in 1969 and then went on to study for her PhD at Harvard.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 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. Her work focuses on a structural perspective and pays special attention to the specific contexts in which certain types of revolutions take place. she then returned to Harvard¶s Sociology Department. Social revolutions are fundamentally different.C. especially in analyzing revolutions. they involve the coincidence of political and social transformations. full scale social revolution has been quite rare. Thomas Professor of Government and Sociology at Harvard. The examples she points to are rebellions that.) on her behalf (Impersonal at Best). Next.´ This type of change is not the only force of change in the modern world. Not only is Dr. First.com .´ (4).O. The nature of the social revolution is unique because of its mutually reinforcing nature and the intensity through which they work. but she is a wife and mother. She points out that they are accompanied and partially carried out by. Skocpol argues. As well as political revolutions that transform the state but not society and do not necessarily involve class struggles. Other forms of change never achieve this unique combination. In 1981 the all-male department of Sociology at Harvard refused tenure to Dr. However. ³class-based revolts from below. 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. Each section should provide another useful way of approaching domestic and foreign topics in the realm of social policy or social change. 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. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Skocpol utilizes her experience in sociology and political science to analyze the nature of public policy and social revolutions. Her work includes discussions about the nature of the state.wcdebate. Her earlier works focused more on revolution while her more recent literature tends to deal extensively with the United States¶ domestic social policies. a social revolution involves the coincidence of societal structural change with class upheaval. Skocpol¶s work refutes such mechanisms as the best method. EXPLAINING SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS In her early work. In this essay I will briefly describe some of Theda Skocpol¶s most prominant works and the theories she has developed in them. From 1981 to 1985 she taught Political Science and Sociology at the University of Chicago.
through this analysis the debater should be able to show how their stance can create positive changes in society. which they labeled ³the warfare state. the United States¶ model. undertakes to establish its own authority and program. if affirmed. 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. which started long after these other nations¶ programs. 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. and examining how their development was effected by who could vote and have an effect on the legislation. ³«collective action is based upon group organization and access to resources«´ (STATES AND SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS 14). Early social spending in these countries continued to spread to other nations as well including Denmark. in following Skocpol¶s model successfully a debater would outline a particular stance on the resolution. Britain and Germany where governments enacted laws concerning hour and wage regulations as well as arbitration of labor disputes for workers. (STATES AND SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS 14-15) Obviously. their social position. Her claim is that: First. Volume 9 Page 122 Skocpol¶s work draws heavily on Marxist tradition from which she recognizes that class conflicts figure prominently in social revolutions. 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. New Zealand and Brazil between 1880 and World War I. 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. The Social Security Act of 1935 included contributory retirement programs as its only national program. if it wins.com .wcdebate.´ that view is inaccurate. The same method may prove successful in answering a plan that could have detrimental effects. While all of the previously mentioned nations provided social benefits directly from the nation¶s budget. not all social revolution is a positive thing.S.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. In the past individuals in a variety of areas. Americans tend to perceive these programs as handouts to people who are lazy and haven¶t earned them. social disorientation. and insurance for workers. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Hopefully. the conditions that cause change. those individuals capable of creating change.S. Finally. the revolutionary movement fights it out with the authorities or dominant class and. The idea of political-conflict is based in the assumption that. and the resources available to the group. Thus. MATERNALIST SOCIAL POLICY FRAMEWORK In American political debates it is common to hear politicians refer to this nation as a ³welfare state. The term ³welfare´ has always been a negative term in United States political discussions. This concept makes receipt of such benefits demeaning and citizens attempt to avoid them. These countries also began noncontributory pensions for the elderly.´ Though many politicians would like to believe that the U. political science and history being the most prominent have discussed the concept of welfare.´ The concept of the welfare state began in countries like Australia. For this understanding political-conflict theories are necessary in Skocpol¶s analysis. Other issues dealt with by the Social Security Act were things such as unemployment insurance. Then there develops a purposive. She takes the Marxist analysis further by examining other factors that have an influence on social change. for better or worse. could create a situation that would lead to an undesirable revolution. exists in the framework of the ³welfare state. never followed a noncontributory model and in only one instance was anything allotted directly from the federal government to the citizens.that consciously undertakes to overthrow the existing government and perhaps the entire social order. mass-based movementcoalescing with the aid of ideology and organization. or new class or group interests and potentials for collective mobilization. which left states in charge of taxes and allowed them to determine coverage and benefits. The structural perspective taken by Skocpol is one that examines. Skocpol examines these issues in order to analyze the way the United States chooses to give out social benefits. Skocpol takes the work from both of these areas in to consideration in understanding the development of social policies in the U. changes in social systems or societies give rise to grievances.
was for males and females were responsible for the private realm. Her theory applies to Working men and women of modest economic means. was published in 2000 and all of the issues that she addresses are still important in current political debates. political institutions and variously structured social movements and political coalitions´ (PROTECTING SOLDIERS AND MOTHERS 36). while paying the taxes that sustain retirees now and into the future. 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. Volume 9 Page 123 The welfare state concept has always been approached from a masculine standpoint. However. Second it provides a well rounded concept of social policy in the United States. unemployment was down. which included the charities and the home. In order to explain this paradox Skocpol developed her theory of the ³missing middle. by examining pensions and programs for males and the elderly as well as subsidies for women and children.people who are not children and are not yet retirees. She explains the powerful place middle-class women found themselves in once they began to organize around particular issues affecting their place in society. Despite media reports that America was in a prosperous time the majority of the country was feeling overworked and underpaid. Welfare literature often ignores the gendered dimension when examining American politics. ³U. This book defends an understanding of the power of various women¶s organizations that make up the women¶s movement in America. in this case the media was absolutely right. a widely accepted understanding in the U. 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.´ 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. 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. THE MISSING MIDDLE. 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.S. 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. First. The fundamental understanding and belief has been that the public sphere. politics and business. Skocpol alters that reality by examining gendered social policies as well as maternalist policies in her work.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Her book. The work done by Skocpol in her book.com . However.S. A shallow analysis of this problem may yield support for an understanding that American media is inaccurate. 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. Skocpol develops a maternalist theory of the United Stats social policies. This has a number of implications for debate. PROTECTING SOLDIERS AND MOTHERS. 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. 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. THE MISSING MIDDLE The late 1990s were a fairly positive time in American history. They are adults who do most of the providing and caring for the children. 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. the stock market was up and social spending was high as well. This could be followed by reports of the Clinton administration¶s success at keeping the economy up and unemployment rates low. This mentality causes theorists to miss important issues when attempting to understand the history and development of social policy in the United States. (THE MISSING MIDDLE 8) Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Most importantly however. 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.wcdebate.
Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Those individuals who fall in the middle of the generational and socio-economic spectrum. because the theory of the missing middle addresses. 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. 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. 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.S. working class parents it provides a realistic mechanism for assessing the resolution which your judges may often relate to. First. 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. are generally ignored in political debates. 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. Skocpol argues.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. society and economic life´ (THE MISSING MIDDLE 8). 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. 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. 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. While all of these groups are relevant to discussions on social policy. 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. many of them parents. 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. the working population. Additionally. mainly. and still are. who Skocpol argues.wcdebate. More recently social policy debates have become an issue of the elderly verses the young. Though the Clinton administration can tout low unemployment rates and a high stock market it is irrelevant to a large portion of the population. 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. taking this approach insures that politicians leave out the largest portion of American society. Politicians tend to juxtapose the needs of an aging population with the programs designed to help underprivileged children. 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 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.com . ³are truly at the epicenter of the changing realities of U.
which LD tends to draw upon. to explain events. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.wcdebate. 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.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Additionally. 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. Here I would like to give a more broad discussion of the application of Skocpol¶s work to this activity. 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. Instead. 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. her criticisms and explanations end with plans for practical actions that could bring about desired change. they will find useful examples and explanations that support the arguments they choose to make. 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.com . tied together with values and political context as well as factors such as class. She also does a beautiful job of answering those theories that she chooses to disagree with. Skocpol¶s work is useful for any Lincoln Douglas debater who finds themselves in a debate about domestic or foreign social policies. 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. 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. In Skocpol¶s book a debater will not only find a framework through which to construct a case. 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.
Case. 2000.com . Skocpol. p. STATES & SOCIAL REVOLUTIONS: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF FRANCE. Steven. Wineman. p.wcdebate.W. 1992. RUSSIA & CHINA.183. Norton & Company.´ OFF OUR BACKS.´ FEMINIST STUDIES.´ LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY. Felicia A.171. PROTECTING SOLDIERS AND MOTHERS: THE POLITICAL ORIGINS OF SOCIAL POLICY IN THE UNITED STATES. 1997. Gretchen. Boston: South End Press. Greenberg. 28. New Haven: Yale University Press. Kristin Kay. ³Federal Maternal Policy and gender Politics: Comparative Insights. Skocpol. Theda and Stanley B. Fall. THE NEW MAJORITY.´ THE ANNALS OF THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF POLITICAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCE.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. New York: W.S. 1999. 1979. ³The State of Gender Studies in Political Science. May 31. Theda. ³Review Section Symposium: Lawyers and Politics and Civic Professionalism: Legal Elites and Cause Lawyers. Theda. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. THE MISSING MIDDLE. Kornbluth. 1984. Halliday. THE POLITICS OF HUMAN SERVICES. April 30. 1982. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U. Skocpol. Terrance C. Dubrow. New York: Cambridge University Press. ³Impersonal at best: tales from the tenure track. 1997. Skocpol. Theda.´ JOURNAL OF WOMEN¶S HISTORY. Ritter. 1996. p. September 2000.. Gail Lee. July 31. Volume 9 Page 126 BIBLIOGRAPHY Barker. and Nicole Mellow. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.
However. and elite interest groups account for much of the remainder.for accounting for the trajectory of social provisions. the literature under review profiles both the tight links between sexism and state policies. and policy feedback loom large. Case. it provides an analytic concept for understanding the nature of political relations and state institutions.´ THE ANNALS OF THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF POLITICAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCE. To this already weakened edifice of Marxian theory.a polity-centered perspective -. and the random walk that such policies often take along their autonomous historical paths. Although not always explicitly." whereas historic monarchies like Sweden and France have strong central states-has enormous weight in shaping public policy. ³The State of Gender Studies in Political Science. the United States possesses a decentralized. to the emergence of particular government policies from particular governments. In Protecting Soldiers and Mothers (1992). September 2000. bureaucrats. Together.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. [S]tate structures and party organizations have (to a very significant degree) independent histories.´ JOURNAL OF WOMEN¶S HISTORY. In her newest work. ³Federal Maternal Policy and gender Politics: Comparative Insights. 1996. SKOCPOL¶S EXPLAINS STATES POLICIES' RELATIONSHIP TO SEXISM WELL Felicia A. 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. "[C]apitalism in general has no politics. political parties and officials. Gender is being used not just to add women to a fixed political picture. In The Wages of Motherhood (1995). the emphasis of both models on determination and autonomy. 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." she argued in 1980. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U. 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. Neither neo-Marxists nor Skocpolians offered a model that entirely works for feminist students of welfare. Simply stated. that is. Protecting Soldiers and Mothers: The Political Origins of Social Policy in the United States. Skocpol pushes social determinants out of her study so far as to load the dice in favor of autonomous state actors. 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. in combination with the postmodern suspicion of theories that make social life sum up into a neat coherent whole. I will necessarily condense her account. 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.´ FEMINIST STUDIES. bureaucrats. 2. Given the enormity of her undertaking. April 30. 1997.171." 13 Skocpol and her colleagues redirected the focus of study. INCLUDING GENDER IN POLITICAL STUDIES IMPROVES THE ANALYTIC FRAMEWORK Gretchen Ritter.. a graduate student in the same department.. in her polity-centered perspective (much as in her earlier state-centered model). Volume 9 Page 127 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY OF THE STATE IS GOOD 1. weakly bureaucratic "Tudor polity. Associate professor of American Politics at University of Texas at Austin and Nicole Mellow. the history of social policy is understood by situating it "within a broader. Kornbluth. In other words. However.. p. organizationally grounded analysis of American political development"(526). has helped in describing the complex historical relationships between masculine power and government policy. July 31. 14 In Skocpol's vision. Professor of Sociology. from whether and how economic elites could determine political outcomes.S. the shape of a government in itself-which she takes as mostly invariant over time. Skocpol's larger theoretical agenda is to substantiate her framework -. The negotiations and conflicts among politicians. 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.com . resulting in over 500 pages of text. 3. "only (extremely flexible) outer limits.183. SKOCPOL CAN ACCOUNTS FOR INSTITUTIONAL FACTORS BEARING ON POLITICS Kristin Kay Barker. these institutionalized forces create policy opportunities and barriers. Rather. p.wcdebate. 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. historical sociologist Theda Skocpol delivered a series of blows that threatened to bring it tumbling down. electoral rules. governmental institutions.
"Pioneering European and Australasian welfare states. and other reform ideologies by emphasizing its special. programs designed "in the best interest" of workers. republican motherhood. July 31. [W]hile very little paternalist legislation was passed in the early-twentiethcentury United States. 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.S. time-bound contribution to political thought. and children figured prominently in the configuration of early welfare politics. Maternalist reformers may be familiar to some readers.´ FEMINIST STUDIES. April 30. in their processes of creation. In content." However. April 30.wcdebate. 1996. p. THE HISTORY OF MATERNALISM SHOWS THE IMPORTANCE OF WOMEN¶S EXPERIENCES Kristin Kay Barker.S.com . that women as mothers deserved a return from their governments for the socially vital work they performed by raising children. maternalism represents a unique political philosophy that is particular to the historical moment at which it emerged. they offer a fundamental restructuring of our current understanding of what is political. they treated women as mothers who made claims on the state thereby. bureaucrats and national political leaders. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U. p. echoes of what historians of the early national United States have termed "republican motherhood." or as the fractious. ³Federal Maternal Policy and gender Politics: Comparative Insights." she writes. p. and in their processes of creation. Case. Felicia A. in Protecting Soldiers and Mothers. Although often overlooked in scholarship focused on state provisions to workers. Readers may also hear in maternalism. 317) As paternalist social policies were paternalist in two ways-in their content.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. More important. These texts continue to advance the larger claim of feminist scholarship that existing categories of analysis fail to capture adequately women's realities. federal social programs for mothers. Volume 9 Page 128 SKOCPOL'S UNDERSTANDING OF MATERNALISM SHOULD BE ADOPTED 1. 2. Skocpol clarifies her operating definition of maternalism by analogy to the "paternalism" she argues characterized most other welfare states. MATERNALISM UNDERSTANDS THAT WOMEN HAVE A POLITICAL ROLE AS MOTHERS. which were largely closed to their putative workingclass beneficiaries-so were maternalist policies maternalist in two ways. Felicia A.´ JOURNAL OF WOMEN¶S HISTORY. exhausted.´ FEMINIST STUDIES.171. Many women reformers in U. SKOCPOL PROVIDES THE CLEAREST UNDERSTANDING OF MATERNALIST POLICIES Kornbluth. post suffrage women's movement.183. 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. Kornbluth. 1996. (P. 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. rather than just along the lines their organizations requested. 3. 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." But we can distinguish maternalism from social feminism. which treated men as fathers and heads of families. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. potential mothers. they were designed by ambitious middle-class women for working-class women. 1997. were doubly paternalist: Elite males. the story was different when it came to what might be called maternalist legislation.. with the latter's perceived best interests in mind. and/or that governments had a special responsibility to ensure the health and welfare of children.171.S. who know them as "social feminists. Professor of Sociology. ³The New Literature on Gender and the Welfare State: The U. established regulations or social benefits for members of the working class-that is. Case. which simultaneously justified a public role for women and affirmed women's primary responsibility for children.
MATERNALISM CAN ONLY PROVIDE A LIMITED CONCEPT OF RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES FOR AMERICAN WOMEN. and that became maternalism's legacy to the American welfare state. While maternalism empowered the early female philanthropists to establish day nurseries and the NDFN to improve them. 1999.in the interests of the corporate order. Fall. Halliday. 165). Ironically. "The Limits of Maternalism. What became extracted and reified was the single trope of the woman as mother in the home. THE WELFARE STATE IS AN INSTITUTION OF EXPLOITATION THAT CAN'T BE REFORMED Steven Wineman. and social welfare history at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Point for point. but he criticizes Skocpol and other state theorists for failing to comprehend law's autonomy: "In asserting the autonomy of the state. but also by policy makers seeking to restrict governmental services for women. Theory of the State. Shamir sympathizes with Theda Skocpol's thesis that state managers develop their own agendas. severe stratification of power. in both class and state.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. from legislators to bureaucrats to social workers. American Bar Foundation. THE POLITICS OF HUMAN SERVICES. they represent a different version of how to sustain the corporate capitalist structure. teaches American women's gender. p. law and its carriers had been reduced to a mere instrumentality" (p. Adjunct Professor of 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.´ LAW AND SOCIAL INQUIRY. This function proceeds despite the conscious of many individuals. Volume 9 Page 129 SKOCPOL¶S THEORY CANNOT CREATE CHANGE 1. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. If the true agenda of the conservative program is to serve the interests of big business. 307. THIS CAUSES THEIR POLICY INFLUENCE TO OFTEN BE COUNTER PRODUCTIVE. Instead. Similarly. to "do good. Author. np. the hidden function of the welfare state is to maintain political and social stability and to deter fundamental change. it is also good enough to take seriously the autonomy of law. it was maternalism that fueled the campaign for mothers' pensions. not the idea of child care as public service to all. Within political sociology.centered approaches. 1993. the predominance of giant corporations. which continued to be reproduced not only by experts on children and the family. reliance on industrial production which poisons the planet. liberal human services leave basic elements of the political economy in tact: structural unemployment. It is a mistake to view the welfare state policies as representing a qualitatively different system from the conservative program. she is also the co-editor and author of a variety of works on these subjects. 1984. p. Sonya." MATERNALISM IS FLAWED 1. maternalism can also cast public child care as peculiarly unstable enterprise with a self-divided and self-defeating sense of purpose. SKOCPOL¶S THEORY OF THE STATE FAILS TO RECOGNIZE THE AUTONOMY OF LAW. Hence Shamir maintains that if it is good enough to argue for the autonomy of the state and its managers. 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.com . ³Review Section Symposium: Lawyers and Politics and Civic Professionalism: Legal Elites and Cause Lawyers. 2. p. Terrance C. Michel." MOTHERS OF A NEW WORLD (ed.wcdebate. New York: Routledge. 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. but also maternalism that contributed to the humiliating and punitive treatment of recipients.36. Northwestern University. Koven & Michel). It was the limited vision of women's rights and responsibilities. Senior Research Fellow.
However. after all. Women's activism was as much as men's. THE DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY. Gender is. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Clearly. 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. Skocpol uses maternalism as an opposition to paternalism. to put it inversely. Spring. in order to maintain the family wage system. a result of gender values shared by both men and women. 1996. 2. Gender means "female" for Skocpol. says Gordon. "Specifically. but one that did not fit the needs and understandings of many less privileged citizens". In other words. "Gender and the Welfare State: Maternalism: a New Historical Concept?" A THESIS SUBMITTED FOR THE DEGREE OF CAND. 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". was. UNIVERSITY OF BERGEN. says Gordon. or rather a set of meanings culturally constructed around sexual difference. p. 1996. SKOCPOL'S GENDER ANALYSIS IS SIMPLISTIC AND INCOMPLETE Eirinn Larsen. and thus the concepts of paternalism/maternalism refer to an inequity of power in relation to both gender and generation. To Gordon.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. with the exception of the structural differences mentioned above. without directly expressing the distinctions between the two concepts. Gordon thinks it is false to believe that a kind of unity among women was present at this time. they were anything but universal: "they expressed a dominant outlook. np. She has no critique of maternalism". np. it is a difference. to be sure. Eirinn Larsen. NORWAY. THE DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY. researcher at European University Institute. The stratification of the American welfare system into the social insurance and public assistance program. the same set of assumptions about proper family life and the proper sphere for men and women. often called the two-track welfare system.. 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.male and female welfare reformers worked within substantially the same gender system.The maternalist strategy was after all a result of women's lack of political power. Spring. while these gendered assumptions did not necessarily express antagonism between men and women. PhD.PHILOL. Volume 9 Page 130 MATERNALISM IS BAD FOR WOMEN 1. of the fact that the forms of political power with which Skocpol is so concerned are shaped by their maleness. PhD. not merely a neutral or benign difference.wcdebate. By not employing gender as a male/female opposition. 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". . determined by class as much as by gender. this supposed unity denies that women's agency also derives from other aspects of their social position.. and Gordon claims that "she produces an entirely celebratory account of the women's organizations she studies. Gordon indicates that Skocpol's analysis is not matched by familiarity with scholarly debates on gender. UNIVERSITY OF BERGEN. They did share some fundamental beliefs and assumptions about proper role of government and the proper construction of families.com . p. 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. in the way Gordon sees it. SKOCPOL'S ESSENTIALISM REINFORCES A DESTRUCTIVE GENDER BINARY. NORWAY. in a context of male domination. researcher at European University Institute." Gordon continues: She [Skocpol] generalizes about these "maternalists" as if they were manifestations of some universal female principle.PHILOL. but Skocpol identifies these commonalties no more than their differences.
For her. from the University of California in Santa Cruz. Unfortunately she realizes that it is this choice that often causes her work to be passed over for use in institutions of higher learning.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. 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. she does not generally conform to rules of source citation or footnoting. generally taught by white males. This is part of her attempt to decolonize her mind and the minds of other colonized people. Though hooks will make reference in her works to scholars who have influenced her work. her writing style functions as a critical tool that breaks down accepted notions of proper and improper in academic scholarship. She points out that. She follows his model because it is participatory and employs the notion of praxis. there are many aspects of his work that have nurturing qualities for hooks and she feels justified in overlooking the sexist tendency. Volume 9 Page 131 bell hooks bell hooks is the name chosen by Gloria Watkins as her pseudonym. highly knowledgeable in a variety of areas including literature. In her classes. She has been extremely successful in applying her personal experiences in feminism.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. sexism and classism. This interest in books was not. Growing up hooks was taught that men did not like to be with smart girls and if she ever wanted to marry. as it might be today. hooks continued writing and went on to Yale after graduating. have indicted Friere as "partially blinded by sexism"(Women Writing Culture 106). She chooses to use this particular name in honor of her great-grandmother who she sees as a powerful. Despite the fact the many feminist critics. She uses her own experience to help others understand the hierarchy that exists in American society. racism and classism. she found a hostile reaction toward discussions of ³feminism. 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. and the destructive effects of sexism. hooks was born in 1952 in Hopkinsville. WRITING STYLE bell hooks is a scholar.com . it was simply recreated in new ways. especially Friere. At the university she found herself further away from individuals expecting girls to seek out married life but the sex discrimination was not gone. which was supposed to be the primary goal in every girl¶s mind. Like everything hooks does. This is accomplished in most of hooks' work through the contribution of her own life experience. self-actualized woman who survived harsh racism. She later returned to California to obtain her Ph. Hooks describes her grandmother as: bell hooks is a prolific author. politics. perceived as a productive activity for a young girl to be engaged in.´ Determined to overcome these notions. academia and her southern upbringing to a criticism of society that speaks to readers among a variety of audiences. correctly it turned out. Friere's work has served as a model of critical consciousness. Her father feared. In the period from 1980 to 1998 she produced sixteen books as well as numerous articles and speeches. Paulo Friere. that too much reading would change her life. She knew there was something else out there for her. she would have to avoid excessive involvement in books. 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. From the age of ten she was sure she wanted to become a writer. 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.D. The desire to marry was not something bell hooks chose to focus on. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. In her reading hooks found one author who she had a particular connection with. Kentucky. including hooks.
Classism creates an elite group. no bussing. not very different from anything the students could relate to. 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. they just got up in the morning and went. 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. hooks discusses pictures in her all-black school that portrayed black people as primitive savages in loin cloths. RACISM Growing up hooks attended segregated elementary schools. Because of this values conveyed by television play themselves out in everyday life. and classist educational policies. which seek to create a more open society free of oppression on the basis of race. (KILLING RAGE) There are five major angles from which hooks chooses to analyze white supremacist tendencies in society: American nationalism. Even the smallest elements of bell hooks¶ work are purposeful. sex or class. hooks argues that this acts as a barrier to self actualization by creating a false consciousness. 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. Let's share them. 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. 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). Let's reclaim them. No one ever informed her that she was living in a white-supremacist nation. in a capitalist society it is those with the most money. she argues. Volume 9 Page 132 She often feels free to alter the structure or grammar of her writing depending on the audience.wcdebate. 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. Let's start over. She argues white supremacist values continue to develop in society even today. Her argument is that we live in a patriarchal. 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. social movements and educational biases. The lower case letters were an attempt to avoid the status of icon but the name remains one regardless. white supremacist. racism within feminism. Patriarchy is the privileging of males over females.com . Racism privileges one group of people over another based on racial classification. This process. The prominent group controlling American mass media are white males. 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. Frequently the media represents black people in subordinate roles to whites and fails to represent their reality or daily concerns. legitimating standard English. There are a few terms that are frequently used in criticisms of the structure hooks describes. and it privileges that group over disenfranchised peoples. this essay will deal with her general theoretical arguments and the literature on those subjects. hooks explains that the mass media plays an enormous role in the construction of images that construct America¶s social reality. 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. Vernacular is another tool she uses to maintain connection with her roots as well as connections to her audience.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. hooks articulates the impact of white supremacist media influence as socialization and colonization of the mind. No matter your debate topic hooks has probably written something that applies. We have those definitions. which was obvious to her as she took the long bus ride to her all-black school. She indicts institutions and promotes a multitude of values. Let's have T-shirts and bumper stickers and Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. representations of their value structures and a devaluing of non-white people further marginalizes those groups. sexist. FEMINISM "Feminist politics is losing momentum because feminist movement has lost clear definitions. hooks deals with issues that are important in the lives of everyday people. capitalist culture that uses racist.
Let the movement begin again."(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. 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. they perceived them as the problem and the reason for the perpetuation of a sexist structure that allowed them to be dominant. 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. Though hooks advocates unity among feminists she realizes that the prevalence of racism even in the roots of the movement itself create a problem. and oppression. "a movement to end sexism. men are not the sole reason there is sexism in society and feminists had to eventually learn to fight the oppressive structures through sisterhood. 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. 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.wcdebate. FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY.´ 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. have often felt marginalized. is the heart of the matter. She believes that this is a good definition of the feminism because it does not imply that men are an enemy of the movement. hooks identifies this as the most destructive force in current feminist ideology. Work on personal issues have caused feminists to group together based on their lifestyle. sexist exploitation. may even create a new type of feminism for the ideas presented in their work. We can share the simple yet powerful message that feminism is a movement to end sexist oppression. Let's start there. It is broad and able to include institutionalized sexism. Because of this a more beneficial definition of the feminist movement is the one used above by hooks that provides cohesion. and always. She argues that in order to rectify the problem we must. or their critics. Feminists who are recognized by the media and the American culture are generally white women and black women in the movement. bell hooks is in the business of consciousness raising. The goal of her writing is consciousness raising in order to overturn the ³white supremacist patriarchal system. She argues that feminists are made."(FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY 1).West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. The women¶s movement has fractured into multiple movements based on the area certain women are most concerned with. However. she argues. television and radio commercials. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and that individuals who choose to advocate feminist ideals do so as a result of a conscious choice that comes from consciousness raising. Occasionally an author. hooks¶ argument is that these groups need to come to this realization and reunite to regain power for social change. At the core of her feminist theory is the assumption that racism and sexism are intimately intertwined forms of oppression. In FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY she points out: This is the reason many early feminists lashed out at men.com . not division in the movement. Issues of who perpetuates sexism or whom it is directed toward are irrelevant. Sexism. 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. hooks argues against the impression that feminism is only. ³acknowledge the ways politics of difference have created exploitative and oppressive power relations between women that must be contested and changed´(SKIN DEEP 272). These structures are mutually reinforcing and dependent.´ This lead women to begin working on things that most affected them. Volume 9 Page 133 postcards and hip hop music. In her book. bell hooks sees feminism as. The white supremacist culture has less difficulty recognizing upper class white women¶s experience then the experience of those generally excluded from this grouping. RACISM DIVIDING FEMINISM Earlier it was said that there are a variety of definitions of feminism. ads everywhere and billboards. and all manner of printed material that tells the world about feminism. 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. like hooks. not born.
West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. media and the academy. Having the dominant culture speak for black women in the movement is not only damaging because it creates misunderstanding but. When faced with a case that advocates a particular ideology. She provides a unique perspective for creating practical approaches to societal issues. She wants to make her work something that everyone can understand the issues that are important to her. Finally. Her use of personal experience allows her work o be passionate and compelling. Let¶s face it though. The key is finding the appropriate discussions to have with particular audiences in order to raise consciousness. The next great thing about bell hooks is her accessibility. These are only a few of the many areas bell hooks has chosen to write about. 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. Not only can you find her work but when you sit down to read it you will not be lost. The wonderful thing about hooks for debaters is that she does not simply critique. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Whatever the flaw. Type the name bell hooks into internet search engines and you will find tons of information. Manifestations of this racism can be seen in schools as well as in the workforce. 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. even worse. she even writes interesting children¶s books! Bookstores often carry a sampling of hooks¶ major works as well. Not only is her work easy to locate but it is simple to read. She looks at issues of poverty and class and discusses the ways that a feminist perspective addresses those issues. 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.wcdebate. LINCOLN-DOUGLAS DEBATE bell hooks is a wonderful resource for debaters because of her application to a wide variety of concerns. 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. 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. Her theories work well to indict any affirmative case that does not question its own underlying assumptions. Because she is so interesting people want to provide information on her. Combined with knowledge of social realities and academic subjects hooks is an author many audiences can relate to. it silences their voices out of the movement further denying self actualization to this group of people. That makes her a good person to refer to when constructing cases as well. Her criticisms apply to every conceivable area of American life because she critiques the fundamental structures in which we live. A careful deployment of hooks¶ work can bring audiences to your side. White feminists also have been known to express connection with black women¶s experiences while completely missing their point of view all together.com . debaters tend to want the information accessible on the computer as well. Type her name into any library data base and you are bound to find something written by this author. This critical approach may seem most accessible for a debater on the negative who wants to critique the dominant stance of the affirmative case. using hooks¶ work debaters should be able to uncover the problems with assumptions made in the case construction process. Freedom of expression is another great area to use hooks¶ work. even her publishing company has made parts of the book FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY available on their website for free. 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.
KILLING RAGE: ENDING RACISM. hooks. hooks. 1996.W. FEMINISM IS FOR EVERYBODY. New York: Henry Holt and Company. SKIN DEEP: BLACK WOMEN & WHITE WOMEN WRITE ABOUT RACE. hooks. 1995 hooks. 2000. bell. 1998. Boston: South End Press. Namulundah. 1995. New York: Doubleday. bell. 1990. 1994. bell. Gary A. Norton & Company. WOMEN WRITING CULTURE. Olsen. YEARNING: RACE GENDER AND CULTURAL POLITICS. hooks. New York: Henry Holt. bell.´ LIFE NOTES (ed. bell. hooks. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Marita and Susan Richards Shreeve. WOUNDS OF PASSION: A WRITING LIFE. 1999. Volume 9 Page 135 BIBLIOGRAPHY Florence. New York: W. New York: Henry Holt. ³Black Woman Artist Becoming. BONE BLACK:MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. BELL HOOKS¶ ENGAGED PEDAGOGY: A TRANSGRESSIVE EDUCATION FOR CRITICAL CONCIOUSNESS. Patricia Bell-Scott). Golden. Westport: Bergin & Garvey. and Elizabeth Hirsh.wcdebate. Cambridge: South End Press. Albany: State University of New York Press. 1995.com . bell.
and Mexican Americans faced greater challenges in trying to assimilate as a result of possessing different cultural traits and characteristics from the mainstream (Banks. This strategy of colonialism needed no country. 1996). Namulundah Florence. 11. at its very core it is dehumanizing. 67. AMERICAN SOCIETY HAS A WHITE SUPREMACIST CULTURE. TALKING BACK: THINKING FEMINIST. feminist and multicultural critics highlight the fallacy behind mainstream norms and practices. for the space it sought to own and conquer was the minds of blacks (1995. and class specific. adjunct faculty member in Fordham Univeristy¶s Graduate School of Education and College of Bussiness. these values and traditions are racial. White people¶s values. currently policy makers(Banks. Chinese Americans. (1981. p.109). can come into being. BELL HOOKS¶ ENGAGED PEDAGOGY: A TRANSGRESSIVE EDUCATION FOR CRITICAL CONCIOUSNESS.com . 1998. hooks. this very effort promotes and fosters serious psychological stress and even severe mental illness. AMERICAN CULTURAL BIAS IS ROOTED IN COLONIZATION Namulundah Florence. McNaught. hooks succinctly states: In the beginning black folks were most effectively colonized via the structure of ownership. in this case. 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. but threaten their very existence. and political structures that primarily served the interests of the colonizers . Embedded in the logic of assimilation is the white-supremacist assumption that blackness must be eradicated so that a new self. p. Westport: Bergin & Garvey. It is argued that a pervasive false consciousness is reinforced in society due to the sanctioning of exclusive ways of being. groups such as African Americans. 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. BELL HOOKS¶ ENGAGED PEDAGOGY: A TRANSGRESSIVE EDUCATION FOR CRITICAL CONCIOUSNESS. unlike Northern and Western European immigrants. feeling and knowing as the norm. p. Insisting on the primacy of racial discrimination. gender.58). 1994. 2. as I observe them suffer in ways that not only inhibit their ability t perform academically. a ³white´ self. Once slavery ended. educational. My concern about the process of assimilation has deepened as I hear black students express pain and hurt.122) 3.. 1995. Critical. colonization of the continent led to the institution of economic. 1988. adjunct faculty member in Fordham Univeristy¶s Graduate School of Education and College of Bussiness. hooks contends: Racism took precedence over sexual alliances in both the white world¶s interaction with Native Americans and African Americans. in America. In a white supremacist society. 1992. Historically. traditions. THINKING BLACK. 1998. and practices are engrained in social policies and norms serving as basic criteria for social and economic mobility. Students from marginalized cultures find their primary cultural values and traditions inadequately represented and/or denied.wcdebate. In the United States. Westport: Bergin & Garvey. Volume 9 Page 136 RACISM PERMEATES US CULTURE 1. Boston: South End Press. since we who are black can never be white. 1989. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 1988. ASSIMILATION HAS A DESTRUCTIVE EFFECT ON BLACK STUDENTS bell hooks. 1996). p. p. just as racism overshadowed any bonding between black women and white women on the basis of sex. Essentially. 14. While assimilation is seen as an approach that ensures the successful entry of black people into the mainstream. However. p. Nelson et al. Of course.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. Anglo-Saxon sociocultural traditions functioned as a ³prerequsite to social acceptability and access to the political structure´ (Banks 1988.
Women seem to be particularly threatened when our differences are marked by class privilege. to assume that black females are incapable of embracing revolutionary feminism in ways that would enhance rather than diminish black liberation. In this case both groups are acting to protect and maintain the privileges. social critic. Surely it is patriarchal condescension that leads black folks. and Mary Childers.wcdebate. CRITICAL EXAMINATION OF THE INTERSECTIONS OF RACE AND SEX IS KEY bell hooks. girls women. Ours task in parenting and in education would be to encourage in both females and males the capacity to be holistic. p. 1990. Certainly as a group white males have been more oppressive to black women. however relative.. social critic. with different ³inherent´ characteristics. 3. yet black women don¶t unequivocally view white males in the hostile. a strengthened when black males and females participate as equals in daily life and struggle. If we start with the premise that black liberation struggle. active and passive. sociologically. p. Certainly. ³A Conversation About Race and Class. in response to specific contexts. To advance this agenda we would need to rethink our notions of manhood and womanhood. And I would say vice versa as well. 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. particularly sexist black men. professor. 1995. Feminist theory needs to study historically. 1995. KILLING RAGE: ENDING RACISM. 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.com . Rather than defining manhood in relation to sexuality. Volume 9 Page 137 THE INTERSECTIONAL APPROACH IS BEST 1. particularly sexist black men. that they receive in the existing social structure. FEMINISM ALLOWS THE BREAKDOWN THE RACIAL DIVISIONS AMONG WOMEN bell hooks.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. author. New York: Routledge. to be capable of being both strong and weak. This would mean no longer thinking that it is ³natural´ for boys to be strong and girls to be weak. 2. 69.´ CONFLICTS IN FEMINISM. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. We need to do more work examining the reasons white women and black women of all classes view one another with suspicion. for boys to be active and girls to be passive. Associate Professor of English and Women¶s Studies at Oberlin College. 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. Often this condescension merely masks the allegiance to sexism and patriarchal thinking in black life.75. np. and anthropologically how we see one another and why it has been so hard or us to change how we see one another. we would need to recognize biological differences without seeing them as markers of specific gender traits. KILLING RAGE: ENDING RACISM. etc. 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. author. New York: Henry Holt. with the understanding that both categories are synonymous with selfhood. suspicious ways that we often view white women. 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. p. to assume that black folks. INCORPORATION OF FEMINISM IS NECESSARY FOR BLACK LIBERATION bell hooks. Rather than continuing to see them as opposites. New York: Henry Holt. 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. that concerns itself with ending sexism and sexist oppression in our diverse communities. 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). and all our efforts at self-determination. professor. we would acknowledge it in relation to biology: boys become men.
Buppiedom and Big Houses.´ MICHIGAN CITIZEN. HOOKS FAILS TO PROVIDE AN ADEQUATE ALTERNATIVE VISION Maggie Gallagher. empowering article for Black women. HOOKS' FASCINATION WITH POP CULTURE WEAKENS HER CRITIQUE Catharine R." hooks is equally disdainful of what she calls "lifestyle feminism. love goes the way of BMW's. I was initially excited by the cover story . I read Hooks' first book as a young women in college. p.a potentially informing. Which is exactly bell hook¶s complaint. Let's have T-shirts and bumper stickers and postcards and hip-hop music." in which "the politics was slowly removed from feminism. in recent year Hooks' work seems to have gone the direction of pop culture rather than a critique of dominant culture. It is clear from her Essence interview the "rage of youth" in Ain't I a Woman is gone. and Better Off Financially. Bell Hooks and her BMW have disappointed me for the last time. lulled into a more "comfortable" and "middle class" existence. Volume 9 Page 138 HOOKS' CRITICISM IS INEFFECTIVE 1. yet at one point. Like Jada. Hook's interview actually reinforces white-male-dominated patriarchal ideas she built her career fighting. co-author (with Linda Waite) of The Case for Marriage: Why Married People Are Happier. Maybe. I was impressed with her passion in telling the historical oppression of Black women in America. Hooks was an important player in developing Black feminist theory. but in 123 pages she never gets around to explaining what "ending sexist oppression" means. 53. However. She began Ain't I a Woman in college.Bell Hooks interviewing Jada Pinkett for Essence . aside from abortion on demand and contraceptives for all." 2. Equally hard to explain is her naive idea that all that prevents the triumph of radical feminism is bad marketing: "Let's start over. like the older civil rights generation. television and radio commercials. p. 50." I wish I could tell you in more detail what hook¶s revolution might look like. 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. An unreconstructed black radical feminist. Black people and especially artists are often pigeonholed. "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. and all manner of printed material that tells the world that feminism is a movement to end sexist oppression. ads everywhere and billboards.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 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.wcdebate. 1/22/2001. Yes. In the past hooks has defended this move by arguing she should be allowed to "grow" and should not be pigeonholed. Healthier. NATIONAL REVIEW vol. Reformist feminism became their route to class mobility. I was surprised by what I read. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 3/14/98. staff writer. ³For bell. Kelly. she has gone mainstream . Her follow-up works equally impressed me. B1.her passion lost.com .
therefore. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and poverty studies. race-sexuality critics. Yale Law School. rather than as potential alliances and coalitions.com . are currently developing a sizeable body of scholarship that extends intersectionality theory into new substantive and conceptual terrains.D. I have examined the relationships among racism. Spring 2001. a growing intellectual movement has emerged that responds to racism within gay and lesbian circles and heterosexism within antiracist activism." Multidimensionality "recognizes the inherent complexity of systems of oppression ." 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. These scholars. and heterosexism.´ ³Multidimensionality. p. patriarchy.A. The intersectionality scholarship has inspired helpful analyses in areas outside of the contexts of feminism and antiracism. recently.´ and the Development of an Adequate Theory of Subordination. University of Pennsylvania. Assistant Professor. p. ³Symposium Article: Identity Crisis: ³Intersectionality. law and sexuality. critical scholars have offered persuasive arguments against traditional. Yale Law School. and class oppression utilizing a model I refer to as "multidimensionality... the "post-intersectionality" theorists have offered several improvements to the intersectionality model. In a series of articles. 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. The powerful intersectionality model has also inspired many other avenues of critical engagement. have challenged the patriarchy and heterosexism of law and sexuality and feminist theorists. phenomena. Although heavily influenced by intersectional analysis. whose work examines the relationships among racism. University of Pennsylvania.A. structural problems in antisubordination theory: the embrace of essentialist politics.´ MICHIGAN JOURNAL OF RACE & LAW. and.´ MICHIGAN JOURNAL OF RACE & LAW. J. and the failure to recognize the multidimensional and complex nature of subordination. single-issue politics and have proposed reforms in a variety of doctrinal and policy contexts. Feminists of color and other critical scholars have examined racism and patriarchy as "intersecting" phenomena.´ ³Multidimensionality. and the social identity categories around which social power and disempowerment are distributed. In particular. rather than conflicting.D. like the intersectionality theorists. heterosexism.´ and the Development of an Adequate Theory of Subordination. Southern Methodist University School of Law. Spring 2001.. arises out of and is informed by intersectionality theory. While essentialism remains a prominent feature of progressive social movements. ³Symposium Article: Identity Crisis: ³Intersectionality. critical race theory.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.wcdebate. 2. The HRC endorsement controversy reflects broader. Lesbian-feminist theorists. Lesbian feminists. rather than as separate and mutually exclusive systems of domination. Their work on the intersectionality of subordination has encouraged some judges and progressive scholars to discard the "separate spheres" analysis of race and gender. 309-310. class domination. the positioning of progressive movements as oppositional and conflicting forces. Multidimensionality. B. These "postintersectionality" scholars are collectively pushing jurists and progressive theorists to examine forms of subordination as interrelated. MULTIDIMENSIONALITY ALLOWS THE EXAMINATION OF MULTIPLE INTERSECTIONS Lennard Hutchinson... gays and lesbians of color. B. OPPOSITIONAL STRUCTURES OF RACE AND SEX BECOME BARRIERS TO COALITIONS Lennard Hutchinson. Southern Methodist University School of Law. patriarchy. The feminist of color critiques of feminism and antiracism provided the earliest framework for analyzing oppression in complex terms. respectively. for example. 288-290. and other scholars have utilized the intersectional model in order to counter essentialism in feminism.. Assistant Professor. Volume 9 Page 139 MULTIDIMENSIONALITY IS SUPERIOR TO INTERSECTIONALITY 1. J.
He was a senior scholar in the Fullbright Program. 1 When he was hired at Princeton University. PRESENT TECHNIQUES. When Mary Wollstonecraft published her VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN in 1792. Peter Singer¶s educational experiences include a BA with honors from the University of Melbourne in 1967. La Trobe University. Monash University. a woman can claim that she has a right to an abortion. PRACTICAL ETHICS in 1979. Even careful readers of his works will disagree.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. In 1998. His works have appeared in nineteen languages. and again turns to the women¶s rights movement as an example. Women were given the Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. we classify members of other species as undeserving. ANIMAL FACTORIES (co-author with James Mason) in 1980. he was given a professorship at Princeton University amid much controversy. liberation movements for minorities and women seemed far-fetched. he began his teaching career and has been teaching and writing since.wcdebate. IN DEFENCE OF ANIMALS in 1985. and co-director of the Institute for Ethics and Public Policy. HEGEL in 1982. an MA from the University of Melbourne in 1969. 3 The barrier that causes society to not extend rights to animals is their view that these species are fundamentally different. and Princeton University (where he currently is a professor). While at Monash University. HUMANS AND PERSONS: QUESTIONS OF LIFE AND DEATH (Co-author with Helga Kuhse) in 1994. what makes an individual or creature a ³person. For example. 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 -. He was awarded a fellowship by the Academy of Humanities and the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia. Now. But Singer explains that equality can be extended with attention paid to detail. At age 30. TEST-TUBE BABIES: A GUIDE TO MORAL QUESTIONS. He believes that society has become far too complacent.´ 2 SINGER AND HISTORICAL OPPRESSION Singer uses a comparison of ³speciesism´ to the historical concepts of racism and sexism. As the President of the University noted. ETHICAL AND LEGAL ISSUES IN GUARDIANSHIP OPTIONS FOR INTELLECTUALLY DISADVANTAGED PEOPLE (co-author with Terry Carney) in 1986.com . 1946. and ETHICS INTO ACTION: HENRY SPIRA AND THE ANIMAL RIGHTS MOVEMENT in 1998. they merely need different considerations. and a BA in philosophy from the University of Oxford in 1971. He has lectured at Radcliff.´ and democracy. INDIVIDUALS. His writings include discussion of issues like animal rights. A COMPANION TO ETHICS in 1991. and thinks that they have gotten rid of the last form of discrimination. EMBRYO EXPERIMENTATION in 1990.about them. He is the author of the major article on ethics in the current edition of the ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA. and was awarded the National Book Council of Australia Banjo Award for non-fiction in 1995. instead of classifying those of other races or women as less deserving of rights. sometimes quite vehemently.or ways of avoiding thinking -. Australia on July 6. MARX in 1980. Instead. the decision was met with much enthusiasm and controversy. He explains that conceding the differences in beings does not mean they are unworthy of equality. ANIMAL LIBERATION: A NEW ETHICS FOR OUR TREATMENT OF ANIMALS in 1975. Volume 9 Page 140 PETER SINGER Peter Singer was born in Melbourne. with what he has to say or will reject some of the premises upon which he bases his arguments. His works include DEMOCRACY AND DISOBEDIENCE in 1973. ANIMAL RIGHTS AND HUMAN OBLIGATIONS: AN ANTHOLOGY in 1976. HOW ARE WE TO LIVE? ETHICS IN AN AGE OF SELF-INTEREST in 1995. but that society has since realized its mistake. the Director of the Center for Human Bioethics. it was widely criticized as absurd. New York University. Singer was a professor at the Center for Human Bioethics. RETHINKING LIFE AND DEATH: THE COLLAPSE OF OUR TRADITIONAL ETHICS in 1994. Singer understands that extending rights to animals seems a bit far-fetched. He also reminds us that for a long period of time. SHOULD THE BABY LIVE? THE PROBLEM OF HANDICAPPED INFANTS (co-author with Helga Kuhse) in 1985. THE REPRODUCTION REVOLUTION: NEW WAYS OF MAKING BABIES (co-author with Deane Wells) in 1984. whereas a man cannot physically require an abortion and so does not have this right. AND FUTURE POSSIBILITIES in 1982.
Equality. their interests must be given equal consideration to human interests or any other animal¶s interest. Dogs. It would also mean that Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. and not merely an assertion of fact. Furthermore. however. like intelligence. a criteria based on equality only in certain circumstances fails. ³Humans come in different in different shapes and sizes. 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. and differing capacities to experience pleasure and pain. Singer is quick to explain the problem with this criterion: it necessarily excludes humans who are infants and those who have mental defects.wcdebate.´ 5 This helps to further clarify the notion that equality does not mean an extension of the exact same rights. We eat them. Thus. differing intellectual abilities. The proposed criterion are ways to determine who is worth of having equality extended to them. the determining factor is the capacity to suffer or experience happiness. Singer notes how much money and resources it requires to raise animals for food. however. THE DEFINITION OF EQUALITY Before we can explore the ways in which Singer believes equality should be extended. and explains how it is not necessary for a healthy diet. or other matters. But if a creature can suffer. rather. Volume 9 Page 141 right to vote because they are capable of rational decision making just like men are. Singer notes that. then they cannot have interests. differing amounts of benevolent feeling and sensitivity to the needs of others. factual equality comes with no guarantee that the abilities and capacities that humans have are distributed evenly throughout the population. wear them. and a decision can cause that suffering. 4 Singer concedes that there exist important differences between animals and people. we must first have a clear understanding of how he defines equality. Fundamentally.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook.´ 7 These differences make it nearly impossible to create a criteria that encompasses all of humanity. is not descriptive of they way beings are. 8 There are a few other arguments that Singer answers. Because the notion of basing equality on a fact. Singer¶s notion of equality is that it is a moral ideal. then it is simple discrimination. A difference in ability documented in fact does not justify any difference in the consideration we give them. according to Singer. they come with differing moral capacities. Singer explains that if fails since our interests are constructed to always be in conflict with other species. CRITERIA FOR EXTENSION OF EQUALITY Critics of Peter Singer often offer criteria that attempts to include all of humanity and exclude non-human animals. creates divisions between humanity. it is a prescription of the way beings should be treated. 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. Another proposed criterion to decide upon the extension of equality is intelligence or the capability to reason. This would mean that individuals with mental defects still would not be included. Singer¶s ideas here begin with the notion that not all human beings are the same. and the second is if they have interests. is sentience. His critics often ask. But because we believe our interests are always in conflict. The first is the ability of a being to suffer. In his All Animals are Equal. 6 This consideration is based on two things. Others have proposed differing criterion that Singer responds to. He poses the hypothetical situation of an experiment that needs testing. moral capacity. is equality of consideration for different beings may lead to different treatment and different rights. Singer offers the following definition: ³The basic principle of equality. and use them to do our labor. 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. After noting the similarity this principle holds with the racist and sexist policies of the past. Perhaps the conflict of interests is not real. we will never give equal consideration. but that does not mean that the basic principle of extending equality to non-human animals is invalid.com . 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. That is. I shall argue. The criteria agreed upon by Singer. strength. Singer. as noted above. do not have that same capability and should not be allowed the right to vote. If a creature cannot suffer. differing abilities to communicate effectively. a new criteria becomes necessary.
13 Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. those with significant mental retardation. Singer goes on to add that by the logic of those who advocate looking to plant¶s interests. The final argument Singer addresses is that humans have an intrinsic dignity. 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. therefore. like dogs and bears.´10 This leads many beings to not get classified as persons. 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. too focused on people. would be considered persons. and a river is seeking its own good to reach the sea. . and runs through Judeo-Christian doctrines. It leaves us searching for the characteristic that all humans possess and other animals don¶t that would qualify them for intrinsic dignity. This would include brain-damaged people. and fish. 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. ³"When the death of a disabled infant will lead to the birth of another infant with better prospects of a happy life. those with some forms of psychosis. such as ³the intrinsic dignity of the human individual. The loss of the happy life for the first infant is outweighed by the gain of a happier life for the second. Singer questions this criticism by pondering how we assign value if not based on sentience. Singer maintains that this idea only holds up when it goes unquestioned and assumed. In PRACTICAL ETHICS. Here Singer enters territory that offends many and has helped to create a feeling of hatred towards him. critics of Singer argue that those with mental defects should still be extended equality. the total amount of happiness will be greater if the disabled infant is killed. few are able to articulate a standard that includes all types of humanity and excludes all non-human animals. rather it is just what the plant does and cannot be anything else. the good of a missile is to blow up and should be considered. Singer writes. Those who advocate this position.com . Singer notes that this is couched in many elegant phrasings. Again. He supports his idea with the thoughts of Paul Taylor. and therefore be seen as unworthy of equality. However. that ³Singer has proven himself blind to the still larger effort in environmental ethics to value life at all its ranges and levels. be right to kill him. find themselves in a precarious situation without the ability to distinguish a defining characteristic. but cannot articulate why their criteria of intelligence and reasoning apply.´ or that ³humans are ends in themselves. After all. and that even plants are pursuing their own good. chickens. many animals. human fetuses. and more specifically.wcdebate. who details that every living organism has a will to live. indeed to care for a biospheric Earth. SINGER AND BIOCENTRISM Holmes Rolston III and some green philosophers argue that Singer¶s position is detrimental to biocentrism.´9 This dates back to the ideals of the Renaissance and humanists. however. Volume 9 Page 142 sperm and eggs would also have to garner equal treatment as a full-grown being. . Rolston concedes that our views regarding ethics prior to Singer were too humanist." 11 While many people disagree with Singer¶s position. human embryos. Critics of Singer say that his criteria for declaring someone a person are ³rationality and self awareness over time.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. policy decisions would be made to protect the environment in the interest of persons. to plants. Rolston says value comes from having a respect for life. Since those persons depend on the environment. Once we ask the question as to why all humans have this worth we are only taken back to the previous issue. However. He also explains. if the killing of the hemophiliac infant has no adverse effect on others it would . fellow humans are not eager to disagree with the view that they are members of the highest order. Singer argues that you would conduct environmental policy with regards to the interest of those who are granted the status of person. interpretations of these references is varied and controversial. Therefore.´12 The implications of this view outlined by Rolston are those of an anthropocentric society.
Singer claims that proximity. will most likely rest on the assumption that humans are inherently more valuable than non-human animals. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. We cannot compare what an animal would have in nature to what they would have in a farm. The second is that in Singer¶s work. even if the benefit that this existence creates is good. but to change it. than no life at all. 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. Hare takes the position that it is not.wcdebate. The question then becomes. the disease and filthy living conditions. growth. all suggest a lack of concern for the animals. Complacently allowing death to happen is just as morally and ethically wrong as dong the killing yourself. Practical ethics have three primary characteristics. so breeding a new existence is not some sort of net gain for the animal. If humans simply took advantage of the fact that animals died. even if it is a short one. However. in order for an action against an animal to be wrong. This is why Singer discusses action as well as right and wrong. Any advocacy of valuing progress. A third is that there is an assumption that individual action can make a difference.´ 15 Singer¶s view of accessibility extends to the way people use philosophy. 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. does raising animals for food cause more benefit than harm? R. whether is causes more benefit than harm. facts matter. Here. He says. In Democracy and Disobedience. From a utilitarian perspective. the painful ways in which they are killed. or the distance between an individual and a famine. the absence of a benefit is not harm. ³For it is better for an animal to live a happy life. Singer argues that allowing death is as bad as causing death. The first is that it is revisionary. First. The confinement that these animals endure. humanity. however. This position is initially weakened by the fact that it ignores the entire premise that killing animals in any way could be simply wrong. it would still not justify the use of the creatures as a means to an end. Second. the way we should strive to make things. an understanding of a position. it must cause suffering. its purpose is to not merely explain the world and the way it works. ³As the subject of this book is one that concerns not only those studying or teaching political philosophy in universities but also any citizens. 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.M. engaging the argument still yields some debate. 16 Singer feels that a discussion of an argument. I have tried to write throughout to write in a way that can easily be understood by those who have never studied philosophy. is irrelevant and uninteresting unless it calls for an action in a way that individuals can have power. is no justification for a lack of action. SINGER IN DEBATE Singer¶s framework is particularly useful for calling into question the underlying assumptions of your opponent. especially citizens of a democracy. Most importantly. that is. Unless your opponent can identify why that belief is justified. etc. Singer discusses the ideas of our responsibility in world famine.com . PRACTICAL ETHICS The philosophy of Singer is based on the idea of practical ethics. Singer explains how philosophy should be accessible to everyone by noting.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. 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.´ 14 Singer answers this claim on several levels. but few have gone so far as Singer in making it a primary goal explicitly explained to his readers and audiences. why he tries to make his work easy to read and applicable to individuals. An understanding of the way things are is necessary to determine the way things should be. that is. who find themselves faced with a law they oppose. a counter-advocacy of a value that encompasses all those considered ³persons´ would be more beneficial. Many philosophers and their positions seem to invite action. Singer notes that the way animal production works within the system does not take into account animal suffering. The creature would be allowed to live without human interference. he notes that mere existence is not in itself a benefit.
All Animals are Equal. 1973. It calls for a justification of the superiority of human beings that does not rely on rhetoric such as. 14 R. All Animals are Equal. in moral and political philosophy. http://www. Singer also offers a critique of modern philosophy that can be applied in many ways. 8 Peter Singer.html 2 Princeton Weekly Bulletin. 1999. All Animals are Equal. These lines of study all rely heavily on the superiority of humanity. Singer and the Practical Ethics Movement. The effect of this is that the question of the equality of other animals does not confront the philosopher. and use animals to further human aims. All Animals are Equal. All Animals are Equal. http://www. medicine. 1993. 4 Peter Singer. 10 Smith. Peter Singer Gets a Chair. or student.frontpagemag. Wesley J.com/ 12 Holmes Rolston. Essays on Bioethics. Respect for Life: Counting what Singer Finds of no Account. ³It is the significant problem of equality. All Animals are Equal. 16 Dale Jamieson. Wesley J. ³intrinsic worth of humanity.com . is invariably formulated in terms of human equality. 6 Peter Singer. Counter values that rely on inclusive values of animals and all life are much more preferable. December 7. Democracy and Disobedience. Respect for Life: Counting what Singer Finds of no Account.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. All Animals are Equal Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. 13 Holmes Rolston. All Animals are Equal.´ It also calls for a questioning of the basic assumptions of the age.´ 17 A critical discussion of what makes beings equal must escape the normalcy of an assumption that humans are and animals aren¶t.com/ 11 Smith.wcdebate. __________________________________________________________________________________ 1 http://www. 5 Peter Singer.edu/~uchv/index.and this is already an indication of the failure of philosophy to challenge accepted beliefs. 1998 3 Peter Singer.princeton. 17 Peter Singer. 15 Peter Singer. as an issue itself. 1999. 9 Peter Singer.M.frontpagemag. Hare. and academics. Peter Singer Gets a Chair. 7 Peter Singer. Volume 9 Page 144 Singer¶s advocacy also has implications to any topics that particularly deal with science. 1993.
Hare. Peter. (Lanham. R. Peter. (Malden. Singer. (New York: Longman. Pojman. 1993). Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. (New York: Review/Random House. PRACTICAL ETHICS. 1997). DEMOCRACY AND DISOBEDIENCE. CA: Wadsworth Publishing Company. 2nd ed.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. (Oxford: Oxford University Press. (Belmont. 1998). Louis J.wcdebate.M. Singer. Singer. ANIMAL LIBERATION: A NEW ETHICS FOR OUR TREATMENT OF ANIMALS. ESSAYS ON BIOETHICS. ETHICS INTO ACTION: HENRY SPIRA AND THE ANIMAL RIGHTS MOVEMENT. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. Jamieson. ETHICS. Volume 9 Page 145 BIBLIOGRAPHY Ball. Singer. 1975). ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICS: READINGS IN THEORY AND APPLICATION. Dale. 2002). 1994). 1993).com .. Singer. Peter. IDEALS AND IDEOLOGIES. Mass: Blackwell Publishers Ltd. Peter. 1973). Peter. MD: Rowman and Littlefield. (Oxford: Claredon Press. 1999). (Oxford: Oxford University Press. Terrence and Richard Dagger. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
SPECIESISM ATTEMPTS TO LOWER GROUPS JUST AS RACISM DID Colin. or even a month.com . however noble their object or intent. Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers University.. or worse. It may one day come to be recognized that the number of legs. If the basis of ethics is personal feeling for those we care about.by Frege¶s point. what would it avail? The question is not. Volume 9 Page 146 SPECIESISM IS THE NEW RACISM 1. But suppose they were otherwise.) So. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation. TOO MUCH FOCUS ON RATIONALITY DESTROYS DIVERSITY AS AN IDEAL Robert C. 1999. What else is it that should trace the insuperable line? Is it the faculty of reason. because this will necessarily be pain for a subject of consciousness. The point is that we should not think of animal pain as intrinsically ³ownerless. If we conceive of animal pain in this subjectless way.. 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. we will lose precisely that dimension of the personal that produces ethics in the first place.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. may instead undermine them. There is the very familiar danger that such feelings. Philosopher and Jurist. as well a more conversable animal. as Hume was (partially) inclined to suppose. 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. Thus it is wrong to cause them pain. is not so much a particular attitude or emotion as it is a sense of belonging. thus refusing to grant genuine selfhood to animals.69. than an infant of a day. Can they reason? nor Can they talk? but. This may seem like a major provision. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS.wcdebate. or perhaps the faculty or discourse? But a full-grown horse or dog is beyond comparison a more rational. or a week. In other words. McGinn. instead of building on our natural impulses.. since pain matters only because it is pain for someone. REALIZATION OF THE FAULT OF RACISM IS LIKE REALIZING THE FAULT OF SPECIESISM Jeremy Bentham. XVII. animals need to be granted selves if their sensations are to matter morally. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. But I want to be equally cautious about premature enthusiasm for those universal feelings of love. ch. will degenerate into a diffuse and ultimately pointless sentimentality. old. the social sense as such. rather. Austin. Solomon. 1999. It is not that you bundle some inherently ownerless experiences together and get a self. but rather a kind of kinship or fellow-feeling. p. they necessarily have selves. 3. but in fact it is simply a point about the very concept of experience. The danger is that reason. which have been defended by some of the great (and not-so-great) religious thinkers of the world. p.An experience always comes with an owner built into it. in other words. and one that threatens to exclude animal experience from the moral realm. since animals have experiences. (This is so whether or not the experiences are conceived to be embodied in an organism. are reasons equally insufficient for abandoning a sensitive being to the same fate. Putatively ownerless pain sensations have no moral weight. the villosity of the skin. in over-enlarging the circle to include everyone and everything or in turning from the personal to the impersonality of reason . there is the very real danger that. or the termination of the os sacrum. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www.subjects of experience. since the alleged pain is not painful to a subject of awareness. Can they suffer? 2. called agape. which may well produce much caring and many kindnesses but will also provoke rivalry and competition. to speak of experiences at all is already to assume bearers for them. 152153. The natural sensibility that is at issue here is nothing so lofty as love or even universal care. 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. The basic biological sense we seek. 1789.´ Animal minds are not just bundles of subjectless sensations gathered around a single body. then we will not see why it is morally significant.
standing in a hospital ward. but to attribute strategic skill to heredity is not to relegate it to merely automatic behavior. gives himself up. 2. but the criminal case was over by May. weeping. even Darwin himself seems to have erred in giving too much credit here to the role of ³reason´ and not enough to heredity. Of course. 1999. a twenty-three-year-old Chicago housepainter. FOCUSING ON RATIONALITY DESTROYS INTUITION AND DEVALUES IT Robert C.73. 3. September 6.must not be so engineered. it would. 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. The New Yorker. 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. when a grand jury refused to indict him. Solomon.wcdebate. When Samuel is free of the respirator at last. The Chronicle of Higher Education. Yet many of those who would never act on his conclusions still agree that if an infant really had no hope of happiness. A good billiards or pool player simply ³sees´ the shot. Cook County charged Mr. a man who measures happiness in numbers and considers love a replaceable resource. WHY ARE WE AFRAID OF PETER SINGER?. if killing the hemophiliac infant has no adverse effect on others. SINGER MAKES STRONG ARGUMENTS. So.com . EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE COUNTER-INTUITIVE Michael Specter. In such cases.without any need on our part to postulate Pentagon-like tactical mentality behind their behavior. It is not necessarily thinking or negotiating that are essential here.mother birds pretending to have broken wings to lead predators away from the nest. The loss of happy life for the first infant is outweighed by the gain of a happier life for the second. Few people will ever consider infants replaceable in the way that they consider free-range chickens replaceable. Critics often accuse Mr. Singer of being cold-hearted. keeping nurses at bay with a gun while he disconnects the respirator that for eight months has kept his comatose infant son Samuel alive. Austin. she doesn¶t calculate it. 1999. EUTHENASIA ALLOWS GREATER HAPPINESS FOR ALL Jeff Sharlet. They ³just know´ what to do. p. When the death of a disabled infant will lead to the birth of another infant with better prospects of a happy life. Good game players usually describe their own skill in non-intellectual terms. Therefore. Linares with first-degree murder. and Singer knows that. But to him the symbol of the "tragic farce" brought on by an inhumane adherence to the sanctity-of-life principle is "Rudy Linares. THE DANGEROUS PHILOSOPHER. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. monkeys fooling one another by uttering a misleading cry to distract the others.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. animals display a remarkable array of strategic behaviors.the tit-for-tat attitude as such." That was April 26. np. 1989. too. Linares cradles him in his arms until. Then Linares puts down the gun and. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. Volume 9 Page 147 REJECTING THE CRITERIA OF RATIONALITY IS BENEFICIAL 1. the child dies. half an hour later. Successful traders and businessmen often claim (truthfully) that they don¶t ³think´ about what they are doing. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. according to the total view. p. writer. death would be more merciful than a life governed by misery. the total amount of happiness will be greater if the disabled infant is killed. be right to kill him. 10 March 2000.
RATIONALITY DISTINGUISHES SPECIES AND IS ACCEPTED STANDARD Stanley Benn. 69. As for the saccharine quality of those Christmas greetings and that biblical fantasy. part of culture rather than nature. and this is precisely because a man does not become a member of a different species.. However faithful or intelligent a dog maybe. But compassion. by reason of not possessing these characteristics. 62ff. but as normal for the species. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. and not just ordinarily dishonest. one had to decide between feeding a hungry baby or a hungy dog.. unable to recognize a fundamental inequality of claims. We are.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. above the food chain. of precisely the same kind as we make on our own behalf. We are not merely at the top of the food chain. The characteristics. We. p. We say it is unfair to exploit the deficiencies of the imbecile who falls short of the norm. the result of so many cuddly teddy bears and puppies when we were children. Senior Fellow in Philosophy at the Research School of Social Sciences in Australia. It would be odd to say that we ought to respect equally the dignity or personality of the imbecile and of the rational man. our breeding patterns.if. to steal from a blind man. We respect the interests of men and give them priority over dogs not insofar as they are rational. p. anyone who chose the dog would generally be reckoned morally defective. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. If we do not think in this way about dogs. but because rationality is the human norm. too.wcdebate. that distinguish the normal man from the normal dog make it intelligible for us to talk of other man having interests and capacities. 3.. ad aggressive campaigns on the behalf of sensitivity when we become adults. with its own standards of normality. 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. RATIONALITY DEFINES A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HUMANITY AND ANIMALS Robert C. just as it would be unfair. and yet not accept it at all. But although these characteristics may provide the point of the distinction between men and other species. too. 1967. that is. is not opposed to but a consequence of reason. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. As intelligent and sensitive human beings. as opposed to all the other creatures in nature. p. 1999.´ We are able to reflect and choose our food. it would be a monstrous sentimentality to attribute to him interests that could be weighed in an equal balance with those of human beings. This is what distinguishes our attitude to animals from our attitude to imbeciles. in an important sense. It too. We have what is uncritically called ³free will. and therefore claims. 62ff. we can understand that. RATIONALITY IS THE HUMAN NORM AND ALLOWS FOR EXCEPTIONS Stanley Benn.com . Not to possess human shape is a disqualifying condition. Solomon. 1967. we can acknowledge the harshness of the world. Volume 9 Page 148 RATIONALITY IS BEST STANDARD 1.but there is nothing odd about saying that we should respect their interests equally. it is because we do not see the irrationality of the dog as a deficiency or a handicap. they are not in fact the qualifying conditions for membership. therefore. or the distinguishing criteria of the class of morally considerable persons. NOMOS IX: EQUALITY. Senior Fellow in Philosophy at the Research School of Social Sciences in Australia. Our strange compassion for other species is a ³natural´ projection of our more immediate concerns but something learned and cultivated. NOMOS IX: EQUALITY. 2. our habits. Austin. for instance. involves a certain distance. one could argue. are rational. as an expression of a certain sentimentality as well as a Christian allegory..
2. At the same time one noticed a small kitten. At the same time. COMMENTS ON PETER SINGER'S ANALYSIS THAT LEADS TO SPECIESISM. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. on the role of normative ethical theory) underestimates the power of compassion. simply because they are humans. we still often have some positive sentiments and intuitions toward the interests of animals. For example. 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. If we have a hard time grasping his view. Quincy Lee Centennial and Distinguished Teaching Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas. on the other hand. a pet owner and so on. simply because they are men. 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´). 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.According to Singer. 1999. The notion that Singer will develop in ways that may well be strange and new to us. 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. Visit West Coast Publishing at: www. Volume 9 Page 149 THE INCLUSION OF ANIMALS AS WORTHY OF EQUALITY IS BAD 1.. According to this principle. in his emphasis on reason (and consequently. that some people have a different skin color. is that Singer.com . Solomon. and it requires care and concern.West Coast Philosopher and Value Handbook. In most cases. 1999. We would not be absolutely immune to the "interests" of the kitten. and most people seem to. it prohibits granting any weight to particular features of a situation. p. However. one might have an experience that is contrary to this position. a zoo goer. adds universal principles to the promptings of our biologically inherited feelings. or have different abilities than the person engaging in moral deliberation are not considerations that in themselves justify differential treatment.wcdebate. Reason. unconcerned with the processes of producing meat for the table. perhaps returning to some of those personal sentiments or intuitions might be a good place to go.. and they might not be sentiments of equality. according to Singer. The danger. p. WE ALREADY GIVE CONSIDERATION TO ANIMALS Bob Corbett.. are of a different gender.. 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. my number three. is a theory that violates the principle of equal consideration of interests. in a sentence. is that reason will also leave those feelings behind. np. As Singer discusses the principle.. a need to know about the state of the world and plight of people outside of one¶s own limited domain. Professor at Webster University. SINGER AND HIS CRITICS. are not 100% novel. 1999. Suppose one were drinking a large glass of milk and had drunk one's fill. are from a different country. and they many not compete well with contrary interests toward humans. 134-135. seemingly hungry and crying. p. Suppose one were all the things Singer attacks: a meat eater. even though our lives as a whole might suggest we were speciesists of the worst sort. WE HAVE NO NEED TO GO FURTHER. 3. Let me begin with the easiest one. as evidenced by any number of philosophers who simply ³talk a good game. Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University.Just as Singer¶s substantive impartiality condemns granting additional consideration to the interests or preferences of one¶s racial or ethic group. GRANTING ANIMALS EQUALITY HARMS POLITICALLY DISADVANTAGED PEOPLE Lori Gruen. 75. Austin. They may not be dominant. My argument. 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. most of us are familiar with anti-speciesist sentiments. the emotional sense that what happens to other matters. AN EMPHASIS ON REASON BY SINGER DESTROYS THE NATURE OF COMPASSION Robert C. The point here is that many of us have some intuitions toward the interests of animals. however. An adequate sense of ethics requires not only reason but concern and curiosity. such differences do not provide a rational basis for differences in our ethical considerations or treatment. Nonetheless. so does it condemn granting additional consideration to the interests or preferences of humans over non-humans.´ Thus.
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