To What Extent Can Beitz — страница 5

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change. Michael Sandal further elaborates on the conception of the ?self? stating that it is our membership of a particular community that shapes our self- identity. This ?self-identity? in turn shapes our views on what is, and what is not ?ethical behavior?. This makes it virtually impossible to appeal beyond the traditions which people have developed over time, in order to create some universal ideals. It is in my opinion that Beitz has made significant advances towards the future application of international principles of justice. Even though his theory of a ?cosmopolitan international morality? has been criticized to the point that it has rendered his theory obsolete, we must not forget that this may be only the beginning of a lengthy process that will end with the

consolidation of international principles of justice that will put an end to Third World poverty, for example. It is Beitz?s ?ideal? of which I place so much value. Nevertheless, we are only concerned with the extent to which Beitz?s theory can be sustained. The basic fact is that Beitz?s theory cannot be sustained because it is not practical, and is contradictory. First of all Beitz bases his conception of justice on the ?reality? of economic interdependence and assumes that there is sufficient interdependence between states that they constitute a cooperative scheme. This initial observation means that Beitz?s argument must be built on the condition of existence in the present since a condition of interdependence pertains. However, Beitz later goes on to state that a global

difference principle need not be applied in the present but may be applied in the future. Since Beitz does not completely distinguish himself from the Realists, he has constructed a problem of international ethics that does not count as a radical departure from the orthodox view he wishes to dislodge. Thus he changes tack from ??existence conditions? back to ?feasibility conditions? by enforcing criteria of membership of the global original position which rely on the moral personality and not the non-ideal world. In order to ensure impartiality, Beitz construct a hypothetical scenario of an international original position that by definition excludes the particularities of history, national identity among others. Beitz has managed his ideal theory, so that what has been

deliberately excluded cannot undermine it. Thus the application of ideal theory to the non-ideal world is unidirectional. Regarding the post-modernist and communitarian criticisms of Beitz?s picture of the subject, it seems as though they have placed an insurmountable barrier in his attempt to formulate a ?cosmopolitan international morality?. In order for Beitz?s theory to appeal, he must in some way go beyond the cultures of different communities in order to provide a basis for resolving disputes between them. Critics such as Thompson believe this appeal to be impossible. Thompson states that ?a theory of international justice, whether it comes from a transcendental standpoint or somewhere more mundane, seems to require general consensus, which, given the way in which moral

agents are tied to their communities and the incommensurability of their traditions or discourses, is not likely to be forthcoming.?(Thompson1992:20) Given the fact that so much of what Beitz states is contradictory, and the weight of criticism behind these contradictions, we must conclude that Beitz?s ?cosmopolitan international theory? is ultimately unsuccessful. Bibliography ?Beitz, Charles R. 1979. Political Theory and International Relations. Princeton: Princeton University Press ?Beitz, Charles R. 1983. ?Cosmopolitan Ideals and National Sentiment,? Journal of Philosophy 80: 591-9 ?Pin-Fat, Veronique. 1997. ?Charles Beitz: From a moral point of view- ideal theory in a non-ideal world,? Ethics and the Limits of Language in International Relations Theory: A Grammatical

Investigation. 5: 184-222 ?Pogge, T.W. 1992. ?Cosmopolitanism and Sovereignty,? Ethics 103(1): 48-75. ?Thompson, Janna. 1992. Justice and World Order: A Philosophical Enquiry. London: Routledge