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Unformatted text preview: The situation is different in the case of justice. What determines whether an act is just is not simply the immediate effects on a particular individual or even a relatively small group of persons but rather the effects on society as a whole and over a long period of time. This can be seen quite readily if one stops to consider the justification of any of our laws having to do with the holding of private property or the protection of human life. Take, for example, the punishment administered to criminals for their disregard of the rights of other people. The punishment may involve a serious injury to the person who receives it, but this is more than balanced by the protection which it gives to the other members of society. The same is true in regard to the system of taxation, which enables the government to take a portion of one's private property in order to provide...
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- Fall '11