Conservativism 1 - Conservative Critique of Liberalism J.F....

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Conservative Critique of Liberalism J.F. Stephen: All law is enforcement of morality! Aims to prevent vice, promote virtue Proofs: 1. Motive to punish crime = express moral outrage of community toward vicious acts not just to deter crime
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2. Severity of punishment tied to: viciousness of crime blameworthiness of criminal not to deterrent value so: severe temptation mitigates penalty (hungry stealing food) shocking crime gets harsher penalty even if this doesn’t add deterrence --revenge by torture --hate crimes
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3. Immoral contracts not enforced cheating on exams Objection: law rightly ignores many vices Reply: only when interference does more harm than good some moral standards too vague to enforce invasion of privacy harmful Liberal reply: “morality” a term of art = Parts of morality not connected to what people owe one another Law may enforce rights, claims of individuals on others May not enforce “morality” as free-floating claims (victimless crimes, “sin”)
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1. Undermines Rule of Law licenses judges to impute any purpose to law imposes no objective constraints on judges 2. Undermines Democracy all law enforces someone’s morality PI substitutes judges’ morality for majority morality
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This note was uploaded on 01/15/2012 for the course PHIL 359 taught by Professor Anderson during the Fall '09 term at University of Michigan.

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Conservativism 1 - Conservative Critique of Liberalism J.F....

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