Fri Dec 2, 2005
336 Boalt Hall, 4–6 PM
Michael Blake (University of Washington)
Political philosophy is generally done as if its task were to provide advice for political leaders. This paper asks whether distinct normative principles might be developed to provide advice for second order political agentsBthose charged with the critical response to government action, rather than in the execution of such government action. The paper attempts to answer this question with reference to the job of human rights organizations as regards wars best regarded as unjust but beneficial beneficial, that is, as regards the promotion and defense of human rights. The conclusion advanced is that such organizations may have a permission to defend and endorse such military actions even when the actions themselves would not pass the ordinary tests of justice in warfare.