theory of rights

What difference does it make whether an organism achieves its goals? This is a great achievement which Marx and Engels failed to foresee. First, whereas natural rights theory holds that rights are moral laws emanating from “super-nature” (i.e., “God”), Rand showed that rights are moral principles derived from actual nature. The Marxists challenge this right and their main ground is in a society where there are various sorts of inequalities such a right has no validity. We need to be able rationally to explain where rights come from and why we have them. 25 Rand, “The Objectivist Ethics,” p. 16. There is no such thing as rights, they say, at least not in the sense of absolute moral prerogatives to live one’s own life, by one’s own judgment, in pursuit of one’s own happiness. Looking at reality, Rand saw that although experiencing pleasure—and, more broadly, achieving happiness—are crucial aspects of human life, they are not and cannot be the standard of moral value. It may be that people may place the demand for recognition of some rights, but these cannot be recognised because they ought not be recognised. Both are liberal philosophers, but Barker has a clear bias to idealism. He places rights, individuals and state on the same plank in the sense that they cannot be separated from each other and there is no antagonism between them. egoistic man”. Laski endorses the long-cherished .view that the state has a very important role to play in the realisation and, before that, recognition of human rights. Whether rights actually exist is beside the point here. As a citizen every individual has a claim for right, but the question is whether he ought to have a right. It is presumably because the sources of production will be socialised and economic relations will be on cooperative basis. Through its sincere activities the government must prove its good intention. The implementation of rights requires the limitation upon the power of the state. Again, the fact that people can choose antilife values doesn’t change the roots of the concept of value or the fact that the only demonstrably legitimate values are those that promote one’s life. So we find that the state, rights and the individual all have purpose. Viewing from this angle we can say that Laski’s conception of rights is more balanced and to some extent pragmatic than that of Thomas Hill Green. In all such cases, although the force is indirect, it is still physical: When and to the degree it is used, it physically prevents the victim from acting according to his judgment. On the basis of such observations, Rand arrived at and validated the dual principle that man’s life is the objective standard of moral value, and the achievement of happiness is the moral purpose of each individual’s life. Cultural rights are also included. Everyone today knows that governments such as Nazi, communist, and theocratic regimes have tortured, slaughtered, and otherwise ruined the lives of hundreds of millions of people (and counting). Rand observed that first and foremost we must use reason, the faculty that identifies and integrates the material provided by man’s senses. But his portrayal of a future society is out and out a Utopia. The task of ethics is to define man’s proper code of values and thus to give him the means of achieving happiness.” She elaborated on the relationship as follows: The maintenance of life and the pursuit of happiness are not two separate issues. The individual is a moral person and it is his determination that he will develop his moral personality through the rights. Before discussing his views, in order to be clear, we must add few words about Green’s opinion. Now, our purpose here is not to examine every nuance of the proof that an organism’s life is its standard of value, nor to address every objection that might be raised to the idea.28 Rather, our purpose is to survey the essential facts that give rise to the principle, to see generally how they anchor it in perceptual reality, and ultimately to see how this principle underlies and gives rise to the principle of rights. Moreover, non-realisation of economic rights may finally result in the growing economic inequalities and according to liberal this theoreticians it is a good sign of freedom. Restrictions on the right of factory owners to retrench workers have been imposed. He again comments: “He that will not perform functions cannot enjoy any more than he who will not work ought to enjoy bread”. Having clarified that a value is that which one acts to gain or keep—and that only living things pursue values—Rand proceeded to ask: Why do living things seek values? We hold the view that a state can easily play an expanded role— particularly in economic sphere—and this helps the individuals to have more rights. Trees, for example, extend their roots into the ground and their branches and leaves toward the sky; they value minerals, water, and sunlight. 32–33. There is no fixed and clear conception about justice. Views of Green on State: Green’s opinions are primarily grounded on human nature and stated that the state, as the merchandise of human perception. And just as to speak of value as apart from life is worse than a contradiction in terms, so to speak of rights as apart from egoism is worse than a contradiction in terms—and for the same reason. With all due respect to Locke and the Founders (and the respect due is monumental), the idea that rights come from God or from a law of nature created by God not only fails to meet the requirement of demonstrability; it also concedes that reason and logic are on the side of tyrants. If a person had a “right” to be given food, or a house, or medical care, or an education, or the like, that would imply that other people must be forced to provide him with these goods or services. Again, this idea is misleading. The state cannot give more rights to some and less to others. Other theories hold that human rights codify moral behavior which is a human social product developed by a process of biological and social evolution (associated with Hume). The liberal thinkers paid very little attention to the realisation of economic rights. If you had planned to build a shelter, you can’t build it. By fraudulently taking and keeping the man’s money, the crook is physically preventing him from spending or saving it as he otherwise would. But these inequalities are not supposed to disturb or affect the procedural principle or rule. Putnam’s Sons, 1904–5), http://oll.libertyfund.org/?option=com_staticxt&staticfile=show.php%3Ftitle=800&chapter=85803&layout=html&Itemid=27. “The concept ‘value’ is not a primary,” Rand observed. Because the man’s willingness to exchange his money for the car was based partly on the crook’s lie, the crook has gained and is now keeping the man’s money against his will. A rock just remains wherever it is unless some outside force, such as a wave or a hammer, hits and moves it. None supplies an objective foundation for freedom. He says, “Rights are correlative to functions”. In the absence of demonstrable proof of the existence of rights, proponents of rights have nothing to support their claims—and the modern intellectuals know it. The Will Theory states that right is an inherent attribute of the human will. It is a fact that the role of the state is not above suspicion and criticism but on this account it should not be debarred from playing its role. Barker described it as “the human consciousness postulates liberty’, Liberty involves rights; rights demand the state”. “A government,” observed Rand, “holds a legal monopoly on the use of physical force.”, No individual or private group or private organization has the legal power to initiate the use of physical force against other individuals or groups and to compel them to act against their own voluntary choice. The majority people have not that weapon and it is the primary duty of the state to supply that. So how can we conclude that a cooperative society based on Marxian principle will create an Eden for people’s perfect and ideal rights system? Each individual has a moral right to act on his own judgment for his own sake—and to keep, use, and dispose of the product of his effort—so long as he respects the same right of others. I’m not happy with it. And a “theory” of rights that permits murder, enslavement, and rape is not a theory of rights but a mockery of them. What ultimately is at stake? Britain is the pioneer in this field. The functional theory of rights wants to stress that an individual is entitled to claim rights only when he performs duty Otherwise the claim or demand for right cannot be entertained. . But the FDA bureaucrats took their time. Anna and her parents were relieved: In their judgment, these experimental drugs were worth the risks involved in her taking them. A man has no right to do whatever he likes. It rejects the concept of natural and inalienable rights as also various other theories enunciated from time to time as an explanation of the nature of rights. 27 Rand, “The Objectivist Ethics,” p. 16. How much or how many rights an individual will be allowed to enjoy that will be decided by the equal standard, but if we cannot place all the individuals at a particular level we cannot decide the standard which we want to call equal. Laski’s categorical assertion is that the legal theory of rights is quite silent on the above questions. The issue of people being forced to act against their judgment is a matter of life and death. We need food, clothing, shelter, medicine, and other material goods in order to live and prosper. The decision of the state cannot be accepted without any scrutiny. 28 For a fuller discussion of this derivation, see Rand, The Virtue of Selfishness; Biddle, Loving Life; and Smith, Viable Values. 18 The Works of Alexander Hamilton: Miscellanies, 1774–1789, Vol. It is to be assessed or analysed in the background of social and political environment. Of recent origin is the Economic Theory of Rights and it finds its inspiration in the teaching of Karl Marx. Egoistic man is self-centred. If an individual can contribute to the society that can be regarded as a ground for right. Rights of one cannot be isolated from those of others. In liberal theory of rights large amount of space has been devoted to the utility of equality before law. One’s answers to these questions determine whether one is capable of defending a free society. Thus, it is both a political and economic right. A legal theory of rights will tell us what in fact the character of a state is; it will not tell us whether the rights there recognised are the rights which need recognition”. Rights-based ethics is centered around the idea that people possess certain rights merely by virtue of being born human. Rights are legal, social, or ethical principles of freedom or entitlement; that is, rights are the fundamental normative rules about what is allowed of people or owed to people according to some legal system, social convention, or ethical theory. 21 Ayn Rand, “Conservatism: An Obituary,” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal (New York: Signet, 1967), p. 197. Take another example. It must come to the aid and advice of the millions. Citizenship is generally defined as an ability to contribute to the progress of state. The reason each individual’s life should legally belong to him is that each individual’s life does in fact morally belong to him. The owner assures the man that the car’s odometer reading is correct; this, however, is not true, and the owner knows it because he turned back the mileage himself. A Theory of Human Rights Freedom is the goal rather than the ground of human rights. As John Locke put it, there is “a law of nature,” and this law “teaches all mankind, who will but consult it, that being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions.”9 The Founders agreed. He says that it is the responsibility of every citizen to consider the common good or the overall interests of all people. THEORY OF LEGAL RIGHTS According to this theory rights are created and maintained by the state6. And reason is not only our means of gaining knowledge of our physical needs; it is also our means of gaining knowledge of our spiritual needs. The materialisation of basic rights of all citizens irrespective of race, sex, caste and religion is the urgent task of any government embedded with welfare objectives. Examples of rights-based ethics at work include the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Geneva Conventions and the United States' Declaration of Independence, Bill of Rights and Constitution. But rights are claims and the origin is the individual himself. He defines rights as “those conditions of social life without which no man can seek, in general, to be himself at his best”. Students act to gain and keep good grades; they value good grades. Laski analyses the legal theory of state. “Happiness,” observed Rand, “can properly be the purpose of ethics, but not the standard. 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