Social, Economic and Political Thought Notes Part II Notes (Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU, J.S. MILL)

November 2, 2017 | Author: simplyhue | Category: Natural And Legal Rights, Social Contract, Leviathan (Book), John Locke, Thomas Hobbes
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Social, Economic and Political Thought notes on Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU, J.S. MILL, Leviathan, ...


Soc Sci II Part II Exam THOMAS HOBBES -modern thinker since during the 17 th century rise of the science, separation of philosophy and theology -time of Descartes, Newton, Galileo, Harvey -church claims were debunked -rationalism came back into picture -reason was enshrined in mathematics and geometry -knowledge based on scientific method & certainty at certain degree -to know what‟s the proper and right set-up of the society – use reason Social Contract -we have states because we chose to have it, a society and a government, we agreed that somebody would rule over us -we exchange freedom for security -now the question is: why? -implications: assumption is everyone originally live without a society and everyone can do as they please (take away everything – religion, society, rules – people can do whatever they want) -prior to agreement, anything goes, there‟s no social constraints Social Contract Theory -why we moved from having absolute freedom into „fooling‟ ourselves to have a society -decision to enter into this contract is voluntary -we voluntarily submit ourselves to the constraints from the government -assumption: everyone agreed Leviathan -greatest philosophical work of the English -seamonster -Hobbes view on things is just motion of things -society is just a sum of the individual rights -Platonic tradition: before you understand the society, you must understand first the individual Nature of Man and State of Nature -constant, unchanging -most primitive form is move into actions by desires or appetites and aversions -you do something because you wanted to, you don‟t do it because you don‟t want to -Hobbes does not believe that people by nature are sinful, political and social *by nature, all men are desiring animals impelled to actions through passions and aversions -we just differ on how we see things, but it all boils down to desires (good) & aversions (bad) -at the end of the day, you talk about conditions that you seek and conditions that you avoid *at the same time, we are self-interested animals and competitive by nature *man by nature seeks felicity (happiness) – getting what you want and getting what you hate *man is not a good-seeker, we are by nature a power-seeker -technically, everyone is your enemy in this state ~no concept of ownership that‟s why even if all the power is yours, there is no security *we are all equal, we have the same opportunities – at the end of the day, power is relative like differences in strength, height etc. -we can all kill each other (because we all fear something) -we avoid painful and violent death *our only right is the right to self-preservation -chaotic, there is no permanent victory, everything is temporary *we are in a state of war – we are drawn to competition, there‟s no state & society 3 Causes of War 1. Competition for gain -we compete to gain something 2. Diffidence for safety -defend what you have, your life, what you want 3. Glory for reputation The Reason Why We Agreed to Have Society -because we have no security, we are always afraid, we fear death -nobody could alter the state of nature without giving consent since we‟re all free and independent -man is in sordid of deliverance ~we had an attempt to free ourselves from this predicament -our passion is the one that pushed as to get rid of that predicament -the reason why we all have the same solution is because we all have reasons (dictates us what to enter) -passion and reason have to come together to eliminate/avoid your fears

-Hobbes conceded that there is natural law (derived from your natural right which is the right to self-preservation or the right to life) Law of Nature 1. Seek peace if there‟s hope of attaining it 2. Give up the right to govern yourselves if others will do the same (?) – we will all do the same 3. Abide by the agreement that you make Social Contract – is based on consent, voluntary -we agreed that we will live together & have that political authority How do we create that ‘monster?’ -in return for our obedience & surrender to unlimited self-desire Leviathan -who will establish authority in some way in an entity (man or assembly of man) -each & every one of us have to give up the right to govern ourselves -becomes a great monster ~mortal god -Hobbes is the last philosopher to advocate absolutist power -Leviathan is so powerful to be feared: unlimited power, indivisible, absolutist -L. never commit wrong since it‟s the product of the contract, theoretically, it‟s as if we are the Leviathan ~”…act on my behalf…” -Hobbes is an absolutist/extremist because for him, it is better to have a very very bad government than none at all, still a lot better since in the state of nature, even though you do „behave‟ you‟re still not secured; unlike in a govn‟t, you just have to follow the ruler (like in tyranny) then you‟re secured -the contract is among the people ~product of the contract is the power/sovereign of the Leviathan -for Hobbes, only “absolute power” will compel people to follow -no need for accountability or quality of the govn‟t because at the end of the day it is subjective -for Hobbes, men can‟t be trusted, very Machiavellian -for you to follow the law, you have to have fear on it, so it should be strong enough to restrain you Recap/Summary for Hobbes: Human Nature -free (no marals, no laws, no concept of right & wrong), equal (capacity to kill each other) & independent (not responsible for anyone but yourself) -man is a desiring animal move to action by passion (likes/wants-good) & aversions (dislikes/fear-bad) -man is competitive and self-interested -men are quarrelsome State of Nature (no govn’t & society) -is the state of war (always in constant competition) ~there‟s no permanent peace; no assurance of things you like & avoiding of things you don‟t like -self-preservation (the only right that we have) The Reason to Enter Social Contract (parties are people themselves) -for security (we give up freedom – we give it to Leviathan [Lev. is simply product of the contract) power of Lev.: absolute, unlimited, indivisible, inalienable, infallible -laws: restrictive since it produces the kind of citizens you want) -power given by the people to the Leviathan cannot be taken back

John Locke 1st Treaty: critique of John Filmer‟s patriarchal; argument - kings have the divine right to rule; Filmer justified the monarchy) 2nd Treaty: criticized Hobbes who was arguing against the church & royalist) -Locke “Father of Liberalism” Liberal Political Thought -advocating individual thoughts and rights -advacate less government restrictions -advocate more liberty/freedom 3 Rs (Indicators of Locke’s Philosophy) Reason, Rights, Representations

-Locke comes from impericist tradition (prove, repetition) -for Locke knowledge is simply a perception of ideas, comes from experience -our mind is a blank page, filled only through experiences -our bodies receive different experiences -no such thing as innate knowledge, not revealed by God, not resting on precise authority

-men are sensible: we know things from the environment → cause benefit analysis, weigh things, understand world (capacity) -nature vs. nurture -we become reasonable man from being sensible man -brain has no predisposition, all are based on experiences, we are not wired in a certain way Why is it important? → As you learn, you are able to come up with your own rules/theories from your own experiences -we are not born as rational beings, potentially rational only, but since we‟re sensible, we can develop to be rational

-political power: defender of the community for public & preserver of property

Human Nature -we are decent fellow -we will behave, even if left alone/no gov‟t -even if there‟s no gov‟t, people won‟t kill each other -man is free, equal, independent + rational (you do what is right) -every man has the capacity for reason -because you‟re a rational being, you tend to be biased towards yourself

-2nd stage: we need to have judge, executive & policeman to form a government; needed: unanimous consent of the majority, why? → because we are all different/unique -for Locke, tyrannical gov‟t is worse from not having gov‟t at all because the gov‟t/sovereign possesses greater power to harm than a norman person could -we decided to enter the gov‟t to have someone interpret the laws of nature -two-stage contract: gov‟t & society is separated -in the second stage, the other party in the contract is the governement (people & gov‟t) → a relationship of trust (fiduciary) -gov‟t came into picture since there has to be a judge, executive & policeman -we just lend it to the gov‟t as long as they don't violate rights & people and as long as laws of nature is not violated -power really came from the people, given to the trustee (gov‟t) but the beneficiary is the people themselves too (gov‟t is only caretaker of the society &

3 Natural Rights 1. Life 2. Liberty 3. Property (why? in order to be free; 1st property is your is your body, so it‟s natural property, you need it to lead life in a decent manner)

the people) Powers: Legislative - enacts laws; heart of the gov‟t Executive - (with judiciary powers) - execute & interpret the laws Federative - foreign relations -secure the higher observance of the rights and the life of the people -gives more precision & enforcability to the natural laws Laws - expression of man‟s highest reason; doing what is right *when there is no law, there is no freedom

-state is unnatural for man, there was no common superior (same w/. Hobbes) -natural law for Locke means that we all have the obligation to preserve & respect the rights of others -equal (you don‟ t have the rights to interfere with me) -by adding rational to the human nature, we have the capacity to mitigate

Limits of the Government 1. Gov‟t needs to interperet/implement laws promulgated to the people 2. Make laws that are necessary and designed for the good of the people 3. Raise taxes only with people who directly or indirectly gave their consent 4. Cannot transfer the power given to you to someone else (inalienable)

Stae of Nature -for Locke, reason is not simply a calculating of self-nterest -even if we have the law of nature, we have different interpretations -we still want to get out of nature, why? → because it‟s a “state of inconveniences”; getting out of the natural state is a regulator for us -2 people might get in conflict while exercising what they think is just -problem: 1. you are biased towards your self-interest; 2. there‟s no third party

When to remove the rights/trust given to the gov’t 1. Cross mismanagement 2. Unlawful and unjust use of force -people can take back the authority they “lent” over society -when gov‟t violates the rights given them, they have actually declared war or rebelled against people

-3 things missing in the state of nature (why it’s incovenient) 1. there‟s no common executive - no established, settled, known laws 2. there‟s no common judge 3. there‟s no common policeman - no one will punish you

Difference of Hobbes and Locke Hobbes: humans are desiring animals and the Leviathan is needed to instill fear on everyone (absolute power) Locke: civil right/liberty (right to resist); resisting an oppressive gov‟t (limited power) → authority is not consistent with interpreting the natural laws and natural rights; by force

-to see inconveniences, look in to property:one thing to see inequality, look into labor, at first you don‟t see it because there‟s plenty to go aroun (??)

Theory of Value -how a property became a right independent of gov‟t -everything you find on earth is created by God & owned by man -labor is unique for every person -taking of things is limited by spoilage (perishable goods) -gradually, there was discrepancy in terms of private property (trade/exchange); there‟s now reason for fighting (one person has many properties while the rest is suffering) -the solution people came up with is → you need to come up with government -it cannot be just any gov‟t, it has to protect your rights & should not interfere with your characteristics as human being -based on reason that‟s why there‟s unanimous concent (decision)

-government + society = state

Social Contract -two-stage -1st stage: people decided to form a society; (unanimous); when we agreed to form a society, live together; implications: give up being the judge, executive & policeman of ourselves

JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU Born: 1712, Geneva, Switzerland Mother: died right after his birth Father: watch maker & dance master; fled France & left Rousseau in the care of an aunt -at age 16, he left Geneva & travelled until he met Madame de Warrens who supported his education -he eventually became part of the philosophers -1742: left his 5 kids from a common-law relationship -1762: wrote “The Social Contract” Died: 1778

French Enlightenment -happened when a lot people sided with the monarchy -revolutionary: people realized that knowledge doesn‟t have to come from the church or the King; people did not rely on authority for knowledge -”knowledge is power” - makes you independent of authority --Diderot: conceptualized the encyclopedia Characteristics: 1. Opposition to authority 2. Rationality - nature is susceptible to human reason; morals, ethics and religion have to be in accordance with human reason *philosophers- had unshakable faith in human reason

Enlightenment Movement -seeks to enlighten the masses through education (monarchy wants to keep the people ignorant and poor so they would follow without question) -poverty & oppression is widespread; people are ignorant & superstitious -Cultural optimism: how do you educate the masses? → once you have the solution, things would be easier because you already have a plan -Criticized civilization: civilization corrupted humanity → going back to nature because everything that comes from it is good -rational to believe that God exists - basics of the teachings of Jesus: Ten Commandments -campaign for censorship, abolition of slavery, and punishment for criminals “The Discourse on the Origin and Foundations of Inequality” -secular version of the fall of man -man is basically good but civilizations made him evil -the fall of man is due to society

Human Nature -nature never lies; everything that comes from nature us true -primitive man: hardy, fearless, adaptable to nature, food-gatherer, self-sufficient -man only needs 3 things: food, sleep, female -characteristics: 1. potentially rational 2. reasoning developed when society emerged - “a thinking man is a depraved animal” to be continued…...

J. BENTHAM Utilitarianism -quantity (the more will benefit, the better)

Nature put man in to 2 masters: 1. pain 2. pleasure -all actions are all about pain & pleasure

happiness is the soul end of the human conduct -pleasure is good, pain is bad -a motive is good if it produces pleasure; bad if it produces pain

J.S. MILL -redefined the whole idea of pleasure -U = quantity + quality -there are different kinds & quality of pleasure

ESSAY ON UTILITARIANISM -some pleasures are intrinsically better -it‟s better to be a human dissatisfied than a pig satisfied -happiness is transitory, you can‟t be happy all the time the best kind of happiness: are you able to make other people happy? (better vs. making yourself happy)

-laws & society must put the interest of every individual as nearly as possible (you don‟t have to satisfy everyone‟s needs, try to accommodate everyone - idea of common good) -definition of justice: something which is not only right to do but wrong not to do

--ON LIBERTY 4 Themes: 1. individual 2. political obligations 3. layers of mass society 4. tries to reconcile political equality & pursuit of excellence

-the problem with living together in a society: as number of people grow, liberty becomes “smaller” -there is “tyranny” coming from the society (mass society) 1. tyranny of prevailing opinion & feeling - opinion of society hampers your liberty, becomes an instrument of oppression, limits your expression & individuality 2. tyranny of the majority - assumes many shapes: physical coercion & moral coercion 3. social opinions & customs - much dangerous, affects you as a person, you tend to conform or else you‟ll be an outcast

the right kind of rules -cotolerant - a simple rule that will accommodate everyone -everything you do, if you‟re the only one being affected, gov‟t has no care. if you have injured/affected other people, then the gov‟t will come in how do you know you’ve injured other people? - the gov‟t should reconcile, fix a situation that will accommodate everyone

avarice - motivate to gain wealth gives bad results industry - ^good -you have absolute freedom when it comes to thought -morality is immaterial -moral consciousness is nothing but mere individual preferences -man is motivated to action by pleasure

utility - the principle that approves or disapproves every action

-morality cannot be found on the laws of reason “calculus of pleasures” -standards that can quantify happiness 1. intensity 2. duration 3. certainty or uncertainty 4. propinquity or remoteness 5. does it lead to other pleasure or pain 6. purity - pure pleasure or there‟s complication of pain 7. extent - how many would benefit

-critical of natural rights -nonsense for Bentham (all rights are from the states) -reject the social contract theory (government) - if many people are in the habit of obeying, that‟s the time to call it a political society)

- we should opose the tyranny of the majority opinion -minority should be heard, why: 1. majority may be wrong 2. even if majority opinion is correct, the truth will be a dead truth 3. if the majority is always followed, you assume it‟s always correct, you suppressed the truth 4. progress will suffer *therefore, rooted to widest liberty

tyranny of custom 1. is wrong because they are experiences of the old generation (irrelevant) 2. they might have misinterpreted their experiences, so what you‟re folowing is wrong 3. you‟re denying human reason & negating human intelligence

-Mill wants a minimalist government (cares only for peace & order, infrastucture) Individual Liberty -important for Mill -we shouldn‟t be afraid that there is inequality in society since we have different motivations

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