Unformatted text preview: er is surely yes because we, or the decision maker in question, would have much more information available. Maximizing expected utility, ex ante, is a pisaller, a technique a decision maker must use, should she be required to take an action before the state of the world
has been revealed. But if that decision maker can afford to postpone her decision until the world's state has been revealed, so much the better. How, then, can we maintain the impartiality achieved, coercively, by the veil-of-ignorance thought experiment, but without incurring the substantial cost that accompanies it? To be more specific: by forcing the decision maker to decide in the ex ante posture, we admit an element into the inquiry that has no obvious relevance to the question of distributive justice, namely, the element of a decision maker's preferences under uncertainty. I say such preferences have no obvious relevance to the question at hand, because they emerge as central only because of our method, that is, of constructing a veil of ignorance. It is certainly not a priori obvious why any individual's preferences over lotteries should influence what the ethically correct distribution of resources is. Allowing risk preferences to influence our decision about what distributive justice requires is a cost of the veil-of-ignorance method of inquiry-a cost, I say, we should seek to avoid, and perhaps can avoid, to bear. (In contrast, it is surely salient to allow a decision maker's preferences over lotteries to influence our evaluation of whether insurance markets are efficient. For uncertainty is of the essence when insurance is at issue.) SLHS Value File The Veil of Ignorance requires dehumanization to maintain its objective mindset Sihra, Karen. Review of Education as the practice of freedom. In Education for critical consciousness, by Paulo Freire (1973/2003), In D. Schugurensky (ed), <http://fcis.oise.utoronto.ca/~daniel_schugurensky/freire/ks.html> 2004 Rawls, argues that true objectivity is to be found behind a `veil of For example, the father of modern day liberalism, John ignorance', where people move away from their place in society, from the social status, from the privileges they enjoy as a result of their...
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This document was uploaded on 11/20/2013.
- Fall '13