Rise and fall of Rawlsianism

Enough manipulation with the definition of man, and freedom can be made to mean whatever the manipulator wishes (Matt Zwolinski)

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John Rawls (1921 – 2002) was one of the most important philosophers in the History of modern political philosophy. Robert Nozick, who is broadly considered an intellectual rival of Rawls even wrote that “political philosophers must work within Rawls’s conceptual framework or explain why they don’t”. Rawls also ended the reign of utilitarianism as the most popular moral framework in academia, reintroducing deontology – one that directly draws from Kant, no less – into intellectual discourse.

In this article, I will put forward a few problems that Rawls’s philosophical project had. The problems are severe enough to put Rawls (or, at least the early Rawls) outside of liberalism itself.

I wrote four articles about Rawls a while ago in Spanish, which you can view in the Articles section. Here I’ve collected the best of them and added some extra bits, and translated them.

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Links (10)

Collection of papers and articles that I’ve spotted since my previous links post that seem interesting.

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Kenneth Arrow on the welfare economics of medical care, a critical assessment

Kenneth Arrow wrote a paper in 1963, Uncertainty and the Welfare Economics of Medical Care. This paper tends to appear in debates regarding whether healthcare can be left to the market (like bread), or if it should feature heavy state involvement. Here I explain what the paper says, and to what extent it is true.

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On the effects of inequality on economic growth

Two month ago there was an interesting debate on the effects of inequality on economic growth in the otherwise boring Spanish blogosphere. Here is my contribution to the debate, translated from Spanish.

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Links (9)

Collection of papers and articles that I’ve spotted since my previous links post that seem interesting.

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A brief argument with apparently informed global warming denialists

I lost some time arguing with a bunch of these climate change skeptics, and I thought it would be interesting to share what happened here for future reference.

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Links (8)

Collection of papers and articles that I’ve spotted since my previous links post that seem interesting.

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