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Kamm and Miller on Rights' Compatibility

Cruft R (2010) Kamm and Miller on Rights' Compatibility. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, 13 (4), pp. 393-401.

In their recent books, National Responsibility and Global Justice (2007) and Intricate Ethics (2007), David Miller and Frances Kamm give two similar arguments aimed at preventing their favoured accounts of the moral justification of rights from justifying an excess of demanding assistance rights. Both arguments appeal to the fact that a proliferation of assistance rights would conflict with other rights. In this paper, I show that these arguments fail. As Miller recognises in a footnote, the failure of such arguments appears to support an alternative holistic approach to the moral justification of rights. But I will show that, without significant further argument that Miller and Kamm do not provide, this holistic approach offers no better support for Miller's and Kamm's claim that there are few demanding assistance rights.

Kamm; Miller; Rights; Assistance; Human rights

Ethical Theory and Moral Practice: Volume 13, Issue 4

Author(s)Cruft, Rowan
Publication date31/08/2010
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