Re: Re[2]: The Violence Solution

Abraham Moses Genen (
Tue, 30 Dec 1997 20:54:59 -0500

Abraham Moses Genen
Being dedicated to the future progress of humankind
should be the prime concern of all civilized beings.
-----Original Message-----
From: Guru George <>
To: <>
Date: Tuesday, December 30, 1997 5:48 PM
Subject: Re[2]: The Violence Solution

>On Tue, 30 Dec 1997 11:25:55 -0500
>"Abraham Moses Genen" <> wrote:
>>My concern, in this limited instance, is the hopeful expansion of the
>>legal -- and social paradigm -- to include the understanding that true
>>equity resolutions necessary for the creation of an ideal social order are
>>best focused on relieving (or eliminating) a society of as many of the
>>inequities that exist among its members as may be possible.
>One can understand that there are inequalities of wealth, luck, position,
>etc., etc., and that you might want to even those out. But why call
>this a matter of *justice* rather than matter of plain old inequalities
>of wealth, luck, position, etc., etc?
>Are we to take it that the produce of society as a whole is controlled
>(and/or should be controlled) by some central authority - and that we
>have social injustice because that entity isn't doing its job (of
>distributing the produce of society equally) right?
>In response to this it must be remarked first of all that, as a matter
>of plain old justice, the produce of society is already owned by the
>individuals who produce it, and not by any central authority. Secondly,
>I don't see how the central authority can escape the charge of
>The purpose of law as usually understood is to keep the peace, to
>resolve disputes, etc. This is a *procedure* for which an objective
>standard is needed. Why does the law now *also* have to be used as a
>tool to do this totally *different* job (which has no objective standard)
>of evening out social inequalities? The one is a formal procedure, the
>other is a substantive, utilitarian action: why mix them?
>The thing about injustice is that it requires a perpetrator. In the
>case of the inequalities you mention, there is no perpetrator, precisely
>because those injustices are *unintended* consequences of (usually)
>just social interactions.
>It was nobody's intention that people vary in the degree of power they
>have over the world and themselves; so there is nobody to catch, bring
>into a legal system, and punish.
>Seems to me that the whole purpose of this concept is to justify the
>initiation of force to attain one's preferred social distribution. Only if
>matter is legal is the use of force generally seen as justified, so
>social inequalities have to be insinuated to be something like the
>result of a kind of "injustice" in order to have the use of force to sort
>them out justified. Quite frankly, this stinks. In a legally free and
>just society, social inequalities, inequalities in power, are *ACCIDENTAL*.
>Therefore they require not a legal remedy but concerted remedial action
>*within the law*, in the sense of justice as ordinarily understood.
>Better simply to say that you see people born with unequal chances, or
>whatever, and appeal to peoples' sense of decency to do as much as they
>can to even things out voluntarily. This sense of decency isn't a sense
>of injustice except to the wooliest thinkers, but simply a desire to
>lend a helping hand.
>With regard to government, the best thing the government can do is
>catalyse voluntary solutions, and then only in the direst emergency
>"fill in the gaps".
>Due to legitimate expectations, we couldn't move to a system like this
>immediately, but it ought to be the ideal we move towards.
>There is actually a tremendous amount of good-will out there in the
>world. All people need are efficient, workable channels for them to
>pour their hearts down. "Social justice" seekers ought, IMHO, to devote
>their undoubted passion and good will to creating such channels (with
>the *just* help of government, where necessary) rather than worrying the
>fabric of the economic system with pseudo-legal solutions to a pseudo-legal
>said Guru George:

Responsa ad hominum
There is a problem here that far to many people fail to understand.
Ethically, we must consider the concerns and fates of our fellows if we are
to reduce if not eliminate social inequities. The issue as I see it is to
transcend our selfishness for the common good.

Can we focus on greater involvement by increasing direct participation in
government and eliminating the "them vs. us" syndrome that our so-called
representative government is degenerating into?