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Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 08 - What's A Fair Start

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Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do?

Lecture Eight

What's A Fair Start

PART ONE: WHATS A FAIR START?
Is it just to tax the rich to help the poor? John Rawls says we should answer this question by asking what principles you would choose to govern the distribution of income and wealth if you did not know who you were, whether you grew up in privilege or in poverty. Wouldnt you want an equal distribution of wealth, or one that maximally benefits whomever happens to be the least advantaged? After all, that might be you. Rawls argues that even meritocracy—a distributive system that rewards effort—doesnt go far enough in leveling the playing field because those who are naturally gifted will always get ahead. Furthermore, says Rawls, the naturally gifted cant claim much credit because their success often depends on factors as arbitrary as birth order. Sandel makes Rawlss point when he asks the students who were first born in their family to raise their hands

PART TWO: WHAT DO WE DESERVE?

Professor Sandel recaps how income, wealth, and opportunities in life should be distributed, according to the three different theories raised so far in class. He summarizes libertarianism, the meritocratic system, and John Rawlss egalitarian theory. Sandel then launches a discussion of the fairness of pay differentials in modern society. He compares the salary of former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day OConnor (0,000) with the salary of televisions Judge Judy ( million). Sandel asks, is this fair? According to John Rawls, it is not. Rawls argues that an individuals personal success is often a function of morally arbitrary facts—luck, genes, and family circumstances—for which he or she can claim no credit. Those at the bottom are no less worthy simply because they werent born with the talents a particular society rewards, Rawls argues, and the only just way to deal with societys inequalities is for the naturally advantaged to share their wealth with those less fortunate.

Other videos in channel "Lecture Hall":

Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 01 - The Moral Side Of Murder Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 01 - The Moral Side Of Murder Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 02 - Putting A Price Tag On Life Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 02 - Putting A Price Tag On Life Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 03 - Free To Choose Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 03 - Free To Choose
Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 04 - This Land Is My Land Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 04 - This Land Is My Land Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 05 - Hired Guns Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 05 - Hired Guns
Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 06 - Mind Your Motive Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 06 - Mind Your Motive Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 07 - A Lesson In Lying Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 07 - A Lesson In Lying Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 08 - What's A Fair Start Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 08 - What's A Fair Start
Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 09 - Arguing Affirmative Action Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 09 - Arguing Affirmative Action Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 10 - The Good Citizen Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 10 - The Good Citizen
Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 11 - The Claims Of Community Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 11 - The Claims Of Community Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 12 - Debating Same-Sex Marriage Justice: What's The Right Thing To Do? 12 - Debating Same-Sex Marriage  
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