August 27, 2008

That's What I'm Talking 'Bout

From First Things:
But as Kalven and Blum wrote, “whether the argument for redistributing income is put in terms of increasing the general welfare or of redressing the injustice of the existing rewards, it is always precariously close to being rested simply on envy.” (Remarkably, Rawls even espoused a doctrine of what he called “excusable envy,” encouraging people to feel envy whenever levels of inequality exceeded a particular–and unspecified–level, on the ground that envy would be “rational” in such cases, as it would lead to a demand for redistribution.)

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