Law vs. justice: What is our duty in society? | James Stoner | Big Think


I think the rule of law only works in the
end among people who have a sense of justice, in other words that you can’t divorce the
rule of law from the virtue of justice. That doesn’t mean that people aren’t allowed
to pursue their own interests in the marketplace. Actually, it’s just for people to be able
to pursue their own interests and to a large extent to pursue the good as they understand
it. Actually, that’s almost the definition of
conscience is to be able to act according to the law but according to your own judgment
of what the circumstances require, you, who know those circumstances and everything about
them because you’re a human being you can make those judgments. That’s a specifically human capacity something
the robots can’t do and the algorithms for Pete’s sake certainly don’t do. But the question is whether you can have the
rule of law without conscience, without people having consciences, without people having
the virtue of justice? And I guess I think you can’t really. Immanuel Kant said, “The perfect constitution
would work even among a nation of devils provided they were intelligent devils.” If you had all the right punishments you could
lead people just out of their own interests never to do anything wrong if you could calibrate
it in that way. But I think the overwhelming evidence is the
other way on that one, people are clever enough, maybe I should say human sinfulness is fertile
enough that people will always figure out a way around any law. The virtue of justice it has to be there in
judges, it has to be there in juries, but if it has to be there in juries it has to
be there in society generally. And I think that our sense that the law can
be only something external to us rules that just hedge us in in certain ways and don’t
care about our internal life in any sort of way, don’t care whether we’re just or
unjust in our souls, in ourselves, I think that’s a tremendous threat to the rule of
law. So, it’s a kind of paradox and the best
of the classical liberals really understood this that part of the game of classical liberalism
is to make the rules a little more external, to give us a little bit more room to pursue
the good as we understand it or as we see it. But that I think can never go so far as not
to be concerned that we ourselves or that everyone who is a player in that game has
a basic sense of justice, has a sense that there’s a duty, a duty and conscience to
obey the just rules that are made for the sake of the common good of everyone, for even
that ability of ourselves the ability of all people to pursue their own good is itself
a kind of common good of a liberal society. It’s something that we share and something
that, of course, we have to sacrifice a little bit for in order to have the real benefits
of.

37 thoughts on “Law vs. justice: What is our duty in society? | James Stoner | Big Think

  1. Reconciling law and justice is impossible as everyone's perspective of justice is going to vary. Law is objective and doesn't have that problem. That's why we have law but not true justice. Law is easier to get right most of the time.

  2. It turns out that , historically, justice is not about equilibrium of interests, since interests aren't about justice. Liberalism is just an attempt at a compromise between good and evil in human nature. A meritocracy would be a society based on rules and laws that govern and cherish objective uniqueness and value of each member, rather than subjective and inevitably corruptible personal "privileges". Sorry for my funny English )

  3. It's how we treat other people. How you want to be treated.

    If you see someone harming someone, or Violating people- do you want the same for you? What kind of person would you be if you saw a murder, someone being robbed violently, raped in front of you, or a creep video taping and selling people's private moments without them knowing? Would you aid them? Would you sit by or side with a criminal?

    Look at Bernie Madoff. Look at Enron. Look what happens in college campuses. There are creeps- and if you are lucky enough to be in a position to stop it and do the right thing- wouldn't You want someone to do right by you if it was you?

    The biggest problem is we think of people outside us as "other" when the reality is it can easily be you. You have to be able to hold up a mirror to it.

  4. Treat others how you want to be treated. That's the Golden Rule. You're forgetting that. And leaving that out is wrong of this video.

    Justice is rooted in respecting others. Slaves struggled mightily to get an ounce of freedom and respect. In other countries people routinely get their rights of privacy and or the right to live trampled on by those more powerful. They get killed because someone decided they wanted something they had, and decided they didn't care and wanted to take it anyway. That's why many come here in the first place because we have the bill of rights, justice, and freedom.

    We hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal. You can't decide just like that that you can treat people like a Product or Cattle ripe for the taking. You have to prevent predators from using innocent people and getting justice for those who get violated.

    This guy is a farce. He's leaving the most important parts out.

  5. Justice is an always elusive target because we live in a godless, indifferent universe which is as likely to reward the villain as it is to punish the hero. The only justice to be found in such a universe is that which we strive to create . . . and it turns out humans are pretty shit at the whole justice thing.

  6. So can anyone help me seek justice against the co-operators insurance who took 2 lives and didn't care?
    Please reply to this urgent need of justice and doing what is right.
    Blessings

  7. Justice is constructed by status quo. I don't think the right definition of justice exists. Justice is a relative concept. According to natural law perspective justice is related with transcendental or human nature. What is the human nature at all? Human nature is the bourgeoisie's human nature? Surplus value is a just? I don't think so. We have to get rid of justice. There is no justice, only thing is human self realization.

  8. 0:32 Common sense, yes. I'm not against laws, rules are necessary. But in between each written word, there is a space… and that space is unpredictability, a very important variable in the equation. One that signals the presence of a genuine human life.

  9. The common good is not the sum of all "individual goods". You can't contribute to common good if your only interest is in yourself, and in fact as history showed us so often self-interest most of the time goes straight against the broader common good.

  10. BULLSHIT….only because the "LAW" is more often than not based on bureaucracy not justice. The vast majority of "LAWS" are not based on justice but regulation of society by it's controllers. Who of course are more often than not those that make a living off of it.

  11. We have a legal system , not a justice system. This guy is just rambling anyhow Republicans have ratfucked our Justice system and the Corporate connected Democrats are just as corrupt and prevent justice as well. This country is absolutely ridiculous.

  12. Jesus. This was such a rose colored view of the issue between law and justice. We have sold our sense of justice to corporate interests long ago, and judges don't preside over justice. The preside over law. Justice is almost extinct.

  13. You fucking jackass. You must have never gotten put in jail, or lost a House or a vehicle because you didn't have the money because you couldn't get a job because some assholes like you thought he knew what was best for you.

  14. The concept that he describes and gives the name of justice to is actually equity, a fair deal as you go about pursuing your own interests, instead of taking advantage of your reciprocal partner's weakness, fear, ignorance, and most unfair of all, their trust, and giving them a raw deal.

    The meaning of law, unfortunately, has been terribly distorted. Law should be firm limits on coercion, deceit, and breach of trust and compelling people to honor their provable promises. Instead, law has morphed into a tool or weapon in the competition for power that is politics.

    Given these two premises, justice, and the meaning throughout history provides ample evidence for this interpretation, is simply the enforcement of the law.

    Justice, with its reliance on public force, can only put limits on the most outrageous and provable social pathogens. Equity depends more on ethical rules and, where higher degrees of trust are needed, moral rules, which are completely out of the purview of public force because it would require a totalitarian regime that would scrap the concept of trust, equity, and conscience altogether.

    Consistent with this, the rule of law is simply a state where power, or politics, does not oppose the law, does not violate freedom, defined as the absence of coercion, deceit, and arbitrary limits.

  15. Expert driven like Bill Clinton,lmfao Mr robot a puppet of the establishment or Elite!! The evil with in America,Taking America down from inside !

  16. When the laws/poLIEcies/SPELLings are unjust, immoral and corrupt, there can be little to no real justice. Cannabis is one of the best examples of our time. Immoral, corrupt law that has harmed many and is still a schedule 1 controlled substance at the federal level despite the evidence and governmental patents of the plant.

    Since our poLIEcies/laws/SPELLings are controlled by corrupt Korporations through our legal bribery system known as lobbying, there can be little to no real justice. Particularly when they immune themselves from similar crimes the public is held accountable for.
    In its simplest form, no real justice can occur within a climate of legal slavery.

  17. I think that settles it, your project, your brand and the majority's opinions of which are cult-like, demand that I dedicate to reviewing your asinine horseshit because you're all so fucking stupid that you're a liability. None of you know how to think in the first place. You think opinions or evidence. It's disgusting.

  18. Maybe we shouldn't live in a liberal society. And what about getting justice for all the victims that our criminal justice system has completely failed. He didn't say crap about them. Wealth business aspirations… Get your frick'n priorities in order. We need a safe society with a criminal justice system that kills demons and sends them back to hell where they belong. Stamp out evil to the very best of our ability then we can talk about this vague crap

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