Essay on The Objections Above Raise More Bargaining Power

758 Words Sep 16th, 2016 4 Pages

For most, the objections above raise too large a problem for contractualism. However, there are some philosophers who continue to defend the theory and so have put forth replies to the objections. In response to the first objection, that the rights of those who are unable to make agreements are ignored, mutual-advantage contractualism argues that the fact that some vulnerable individuals are unable to make agreements has no bearing on their moral rights. The theory says that those who have more bargaining power and are able to make agreements would still be required to treat those with less bargaining power equally and morally. This is because there are always individuals with more bargaining power that would be able to cause harm to others, so to harm those with no bargaining power, despite the fact that they are unable to make agreements, is not in anyone’s interests because this means that others who have more bargaining power than themselves could harm them (Kymlicka 1991, p. 190).

In response to the same objection, reasonable-agreement contractualism has a radically different solution. According to the philosopher, Rawls, this problem can be solved if each contract is agreed to from a position of equality – that is, if every participant who agrees to the contract is genuinely equal. This can be achieved, according to the theory, if a moral contract is negotiated when participants are under a ‘veil of ignorance’. This means that a participant must reasonably…

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