Rights, Goods, and Welfare


In the last chapters I have suggested that there is a serious problem of confusing a utilitarian calculus of individual human welfare with a theory of rights. Although this argument can extend into very difficult philosophical arguments, I simply want to suggest that a comprehensive view of human rights and community welfare is inconsistent with the right of individuals to amass great wealth, thereby greatly increasing economic inequalities.


Public Good Public Sphere Community Welfare Group Good Repair Service 
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  1. 1.
    Michael Freedan, Rights. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1991.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    William J. Baumol, ‘A Growing Economy Can Pay Its Bills,” The Wall Street Journal (May 19, 1992).Google Scholar
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    See L. J. MacFarlane, The Theory and Practice of Human Rights. Hounslow: Temple Smith, 1985.Google Scholar
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    Georg Simmel, Conflict and the Web of Group Affiliations. Trans. Kurt H. Wolff and Reinhard Bendix. Foreword by Everett C. Hughes. Glencoe, IL: Free Press, 1955, pp. 140–141.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Peter M. Blau, Inequality and Heterogeneity. New York: Free Press, 1977, pp. 77–100.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Jürgen Habermas, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere. Trans. Thomas Burger with Frederick Lawrence. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1989.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1993

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