The principle of fairness is not fair

I am reblogging Part 27 of my in-depth review of Robert Nozick’s “Anarchy, State, and Utopia”! The post below covers the second subsection of Chapter 5 of ASU (pp. 90-95), where Nozick presents one of his most memorable thought experiments.

prior probability

Clarification (June 11, 2020): I wrote and posted this part of my extended review of Nozick’s classic book “Anarchy, State, and Utopia” back in December of 2017. Recently, however, one of my readers brought to my attention that Robert Nozick’s critique of Rawls’s “fairness principle” is based on a misconception (by Nozick himself no less!) of Rawls–namely, that Nozick is wrong to assume that Rawls’ principle of fairness implies “group rights” or “collective rights.” Based on our back and forth in the comments section below, I was persuaded that my reader’s diagnosis is correct, so please keep this in mind (i.e. that Rawls’s principle of fairness need not imply group or collective rights) when you read my original December 2017 blog post below.

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The second subsection of Chapter 5 of ASU (pp. 90-95) marks, to us, a critical turning point in the history of ideas. It is…

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About F. E. Guerra-Pujol

When I’m not blogging, I am a business law professor at the University of Central Florida.
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