John Rawls Quotes
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A just society is a society that if you knew everything about it, you'd be willing to enter it in a random place.
The fairest rules are those to which everyone would agree if they did not know how much power they would have.
The bad man desires arbitrary power. What moves the evil man is the love of injustice.
An injustice is tolerable only when it is necessary to avoid an even greater injustice.
Justice is happiness according to virtue.
A society regulated by a public sense of justice is inherently stable.
The principles of justice are chosen behind a veil of ignorance.
The sense of justice is continuous with the love of mankind.
The intolerant can be viewed as free-riders, as persons who seek the advantages of just institutions while not doing their share to uphold them.
Many of our most serious conflicts are conflicts within ourselves. Those who suppose their judgements are always consistent are unreflective or dogmatic.
Liberal constitutional democracy is supposed to ensure that each citizen is free and equal and protected by basic rights and liberties.
In constant pursuit of money to finance campaigns, the political system is simply unable to function. Its deliberative powers are paralyzed.
Properly understood, then, the desire to act justly derives in part from the desire to express most fully what we are or can be, namely free and equal rational beings with the liberty to choose.
No one deserves his greater natural capacity nor merits a more favorable starting place in society.
Justice as fairness provides what we want.
[E]ach person is to have an equal right to the most extensive basic liberty compatible with a similar liberty for others.
An intolerant sect has no right to complain when it is denied an equal liberty... A person's right to complain is limited to principles he acknowledges himself.
We must choose for others as we have reason to believe they would choose for themselves if they were at the age of reason and deciding rationally.
Clearly when the liberties are left unrestricted they collide with one another.
Thus I assume that to each according to his threat advantage is not a conception of justice.
I'm concerned about the survival, historically, of constitutional democracy.
It is of first importance that the military be subordinate to civilian government
The idea of public reason isn't about the right answers to all these questions, but about the kinds of reasons that they ought to be answered by.
The fault of the utilitarian doctrine is that it mistakes impersonality for impartiality.
The strength of the claims of formal justice, of obedience to system, clearly depend upon the substantive justice of institutions and the possibilities of their reform.
Justice is the first virtue of social institutions.
The extreme nature of dominant-end views is often concealed by the vagueness and ambiguity of the end proposed.
The fundamental criterion for judging any procedure is the justice of its likely results.
If A were not allowed his better position, B would be even worse off than he is.
The good of political life is the good of free and equal citizens recognizing the duty of civility to one another and supporting the institutions of a constitutional regime.
Religious faith is an important aspect of American culture and a fact of American political life.
There is a divergence between private and social accounting that the market fails to register. One essential task of law and government is to institute the necessary conditions.
Ideal legislators do not vote their interests.
First of all, principles should be general. That is, it must be possible to formulate them without use of what would be intuitively recognized as proper names, or rigged definite descriptions.
The claims of existing social arrangements and of self interest have been duly allowed for. We cannot at the end count them a second time because we do not like the result.
The only thing that permits us to acquiesce in an erroneous theory is the lack of a better one, analogously, an injustice is tolerable only when it is necessary to avoid an even greater injustice.
The circumstances of justice may be described as the normal conditions under which human cooperation is both possible and necessary.
Intuitionism is not constructive, perfectionism is unacceptable.
At best the principles that economists have supposed the choices of rational individuals to satisfy can be presented as guidelines for us to consider when we make our decisions.
A political conception covers the right to vote, the political virtues, and the good of political life, but it doesn't intend to cover anything else.
We may suppose that everyone has in himself the whole form of a moral conception.
A just system must generate its own support.
The hazards of the generalized prisoner's dilemma are removed by the match between the right and the good.
A scheme is unjust when the higher expectations, one or more of them, are excessive. If these expectations were decreased, the situation of the less favored would be improved.
A political conception just applies to the basic structure of a society, its institutions, constitutional essentials, matters of basic justice and property, and so on.
Peace surely is a good reason, yes. But there are other reasons too.
Public reason arguments can be good or bad just like other arguments.
Citizens can have their own grounding in their comprehensive doctrines, whatever they happen to be.
There are various ways you might define the common good, but that would be one way you could do it.
There are infinitely many variations of the initial situation and therefore no doubt indefinitely many theorems of moral geometry.