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symposium on contingency planning and preventive action in sudan
1. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
John W. Lango, Eric Patterson South Sudan Independence: Contingency Planning about Just Armed Intervention
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We investigate how the just cause principle is applicable to contingency planning about armed interventions in civil wars that are somewhat likely to occur in the future. According to a 2005 peace agreement that formally ended a civil war between the Sudanese government in Khartoum and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army, a referendum on South Sudan independence is to be held no later than January 9, 2011. Close observers of Sudan warn that this promise of an independence referendum might not be correctly fulfilled, and that a North-South civil war is somewhat likely to recur. Focusing on the case of Sudan, we discuss the following key question, from the temporal standpoint of August 2010, the month this paper was completed: How may the just cause principle be used prospectively to decide whether there would be a just cause for armed intervention in Sudan, if a renewed North-South civil war were to occur there during the years 2010–2014? To illuminate this question of application, we also discuss a question of theory. What is the just cause principle? A core thesis is that the deterrent threat of armed intervention is an essential tool for preventing such a civil war. By means of deterrent threats of limited forms of armed intervention—for instance, the deterrent threat of imposing no-fly zones—the balance of cost/benefit calculations by the Sudanese government about the prospect of civil war might be tipped in favor of acceptance of South Sudan independence. We recommend that responsible actors in the international community should plan contingently about such armed intervention in Sudan, with the goal of preventing a renewed North-South civil war there.
2. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Harry van der Linden Just Military Preparedness, U.S. Military Hegemony, and Contingency Planning for Intervention in Sudan: A Reply to Lango and Patterson
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This paper rejects most aspects of John W. Lango and Eric Patterson’s proposal that the United States should plan for a possible intervention in Sudan on secessionist and humanitarian grounds and announce this planning as a deterrent to the central government of Sudan attacking the people of South Sudan if they would opt in a January 2011 referendum for independence. I argue that secession is not a just cause for armed intervention and that, rightfully, neither the American people nor many of its men and women in uniform would be prepared to engage in an intervention that might easily escalate. I also caution that American intervention against an Islamic regime might have high global security costs. For the sake of avoiding these negative consequences and harm to the people of Sudan, available nonviolent policy alternatives should be pursued. Still, I grant that the global community should intervene in Sudan if mass slaughter of civilians were to occur as a result of renewed hostilities between North and South Sudan. My objections to Lango and Patterson’s intervention proposal appeal to jus ad bellum principles as well as just military preparedness (jus ante bellum) principles.
3. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Kurtis Hagen Is Infiltration of “Extremist Groups” Justified?
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Many intellectuals scoff at what they call “conspiracy theories.” But two Harvard law professors, Cass Sunstein (now working for the Obama administration) and Adrian Vermeule, go further. They argue in the Journal of Political Philosophy that groups that espouse such theories ought to be infiltrated and undermined by government agents and allies. While some may find this proposal appalling (as indeed we all should), others may find the argument plausible, especially if they have been swayed by the notion that conspiracy theories (or a definable subset thereof), by their nature, somehow or another, do not warrant belief. I will argue that Sunstein and Vermeule’s proposal not only conflicts with the values of an open society, but is also epistemically indefensible. In making my case, I will adopt their favored example, counter-narratives about 9/11.
4. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
E.M. Dadlez, William L. Andrews Federally Funded Elective Abortion: They Can Run, but They Can’t Hyde
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In this paper we will argue in favor of federal funding of elective abortion, more specifically in support of Medicaid funding. To do so, we will address the restrictions on public funding presently in place and demonstrate that the various justifications offered in their defense are in­adequate. We will then suggest that the ‘failure to enable’ represented by a ban on Federal funding is morally equivalent to an outright prohibition on abortion for the target population. Just as a moral equivalence can be established between killing and letting die in symmetrical cases, like criteria for equivalence can be established that help to identify those failures to make possible that are morally indistinguishable from proscriptions. On this basis, it can be shown that restrictions on Federal funding in such contexts can be thought to carry the same moral liability as prohibitions.
5. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Clifton Perry Political Gerrymandering and Truly Reflecting the Body Politic
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According to Federalist President John Adams, the legislative assembly “should be an exact portrait, in miniature, of the people at large, as it should think, reason and act like them.” It is one thing to have the legislative assembly reflect the true composition of the people at large and quite another to prearrange the voting districts so as to better ensure the desired assembly, irrespective of the verisimilitude between the composition of the people and the assembly. In such district-engineered elections, the legislative assembly may not reflect the true complexion of the people as a whole but rather the complexion the engineers ideally desire the people as a whole to have. Politically inspired district drawing, unlike its racially motivated counterpart is deemed constitutionally acceptable, save at extremes, by most members of the United States Supreme Court and non-justiciable by some members thereof. There are powerful and complex arguments investigated supporting both positions.
6. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Lawrence Quill Political Hypocrisy and the Role of Professionals
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7. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Mark Mercer In Defence of Believing Wishfully
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To believe a proposition wishfully is to believe it because one wants to believe it, and not because one has evidence or reason that it is true. Is it wise to be open to believing wishfully? After criticising one popular argument that we ought be closed to believing wishfully, I develop an argument that being closed to believing wishfully is to labour under a debilitating prejudice. As a rule, then, we ought to be open to believing wishfully. I find one and only one exception to this rule. People who value understanding things as they are, and value this more than anything else they value, are wise to be closed to believing wishfully.
8. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Michael Davis Licensing, Philosophical Counselors, and Barbers: A New Look at an Old Debate about Professions
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Philosophical counselors are now debating whether they should be licensed in the way psychiatrists, psychologists, and other similar helping professions are. The side favoring licensing claim it is a step on the way to making philosophical counseling “a profession.” In this paper I explain why licensing has nothing to do with making a profession of philosophical counseling—and what does. In particular, I offer a definition of profession, explain its application to philosophical counseling, and defend it against competitors (especially various sociological definitions). I also explain the importance of licensing, registration, and certification—and its disadvantages for philosophical counseling.
9. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Kevin Elliott Geoengineering and the Precautionary Principle
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As it becomes more and more doubtful that the international community will take adequate steps to mitigate climate change, interest has grown in the possibility of engineering earth’s climate to prevent catastrophic levels of warming. Unfortunately, geoengineering schemes have the potential to create grave, unintended consequences. This paper explores the extent to which the precautionary principle (PP), which was developed as a guideline for responding to uncertainty in the policy sphere, can provide guidance for responding to the potential benefits and hazards associated with geoengineering. The paper argues that there are so many different versions of the precautionary principle and so many potential strategies for geoengineering that there cannot be any single, simple relationship between the two. Nevertheless, it is possible to identify a set of lessons that many versions of the PP suggest for those considering geoengineering proposals. Moreover, examination of the geoengineering case provides an opportunity to reflect on a range of important situations—what this paper will call self-defeating scenarios—in which most versions of the PP provide limited guidance compared to other ethical principles.
10. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Mark E. Wunderlich Two Issues in Computer Ethics for Non-Programmers
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Two of the distinctive ethical issues that arise for computer users (as opposed to computer programmers) have to do with the file formats that are used to encode information and the licensing terms for computer software. With respect to both issues, most professional philosophers do not recognize the burdens that they impose on others. Once one recognizes these burdens, a very simple argument demands changes in the behavior of the typical computer user: some of the ways we use computers gratuitously impose significant burdens on others; it is wrong to impose significant burdens on others gratuitously; some of the ways we use computers are unethical.
11. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
Morten Ebbe Juul Nielsen Safe, Sane, and Consensual—Consent and the Ethics of BDSM
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The article analyses the role and moral force of consent in BDSM (Sado-masochistic and related practice). The view defended accepts consent as a key feature in sexual morality, and explains in detail the relation between consent and autonomy. In brief, it is argued that consent as a genuine extension of personal autonomy both justifies and draws limits to justifiable BDSM-practices: autonomy-undermining practices cannot be justified by appealing to autonomy. The paper discusses in detail the necessary conditions for consent with an emphasis on relevant pitfalls in the context of BDSM and moves to an analysis of the prevalent “official” morality of the BDSM-community, expressed in the slogan “safe, sane, and consensual.” Finally, it draws attention to an un-discussed parallel between sexual morality and the concept of exit-rights as it is known from political philosophy.
12. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 2
About the Contributors
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symposium on afghanistan war
13. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
Daniel A. Dombrowski Just War Theory, Afghanistan, and Walzer
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In this short article I call into question the view that the current United States war in Afghanistan is a war of necessity. In this effort I am primarily engaged with the thought of the famous just war theorist Michael Walzer as it has developed from 1977 until 2009.
14. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
John W. Lango Is There a Just Cause for Current U.S. Military Operations in Afghanistan?
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The current armed conflict in Afghanistan (briefly, the Afghan conflict) is viewed through the lens of a just war theory. In particular, the question stated by the title is explored by means of a generalized just cause principle. For brevity, empirical, practical, and legal issues about the Afghan conflict are mostly set aside. Hence a definite answer to the question is not proposed. Instead, the main aim is to clarify the question. Specifically, the question is amplified, by distinguishing putative just causes of countering terrorism, countering an insurgency, and countering extreme violations of basic human rights. Apparently, however, U.S. government officials (e.g., President Barack Obama) and U.S. military commanders (e.g., General Stanley McChrystal) have mixed goals or motives concerning current U.S.military operations in Afghanistan. Nonetheless, from the standpoint of a just war theory, it is instructive to analytically distinguish these putative just causes, and to consider them separately. Additionally, it is instructive to consider how they might be combined. Consequently, a fourth putative just cause is considered: countering violent spoilers of peacebuilding. (This paper was completed on March 31, 2010.)
15. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
George R. Lucas, Jr. Ethics and the ‘Human Terrain’: The Role of Academics in the Afghan War
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Against the backdrop of the current “ethics controversy” within the American Anthropological Association over the U.S. Army’s “Human Terrain Systems” project, this article evaluates the moral obligations of scholars and academics asked by their governments to contribute their unique expertise toward the waging or ending of wars of which those scholars morally disapprove. Citing the examples of moral dilemmas occasioned by conflicts between duties of scholarship and duties of citizenship from past wars, together with examples like “Doctors without Borders” at present, I argue that it is not automatically, or in principle, morally objectionable for scholars and academics to provide assistance to their governments or militaries, even in what they regard as unjustifiable wars, nor would suchassistance necessarily involve an inherent violation of professional principle (as the AAA Executive leadership has claimed in recent public proclamations). Rather, the permissibility, or in some cases even obligation, to assist one’s government when requested depends critically upon the government’s intention in lodging this request, as well as upon both what the scholar is being asked to do, and whether those specific activities would result in violations of accepted canons of professional practice. I illustrate the resulting decision dilemmas with cases of anthropologists or psychologists asked to assist in humanitarian military interventions or in mitigating or helping to end misguided or mistaken campaigns of counter-terrorism.
16. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
Eric Patterson Ethics and US Af-Pak Policy: Order, Justice, and Conciliation
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Just war thinking applies to the conflict Afghanistan, particularly that underdeveloped part of the just war tradition that deals with war’s end and post-conflict (jus post bellum). This essay considers the some of the fundamental ethical challenges of the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan, arguing that by considering a jus post bellum framework of Order, Justice, and Conciliation we can address some of the great ethical issues faced by the US government in Afghanistan today. More specifically, this essay will focus on three ethical challenges:• The moral imperative of establishing and enduring political order.• The conflict between our ideals of justice and those of many Afghans.• Establishing a foundation for conciliation among warring parties.
17. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
Sarah Roberts-Cady Conflict of Interest in Industry-Sponsored Clinical Research
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Private industry funds more than half of all medical research in the United States. While industry involvement in research has benefits, it can also create conflicts of interest. The most common policies adopted to address conflict of interest in medical research are focused primarily on the ways in which industry sponsorship may undermine a clinician’s judgment regarding patient care. Insufficient attention has been given to the ways in which industry sponsorship may undermine judgment relative to the goal of scientific integrity in research. The most common conflict of interest policies do not adequately address this problem. Disclosure policies alone will not remove or ameliorate all conflicts. Further, severing or monitoring ties between clinicians and industries will not adequately address the problem, since in many cases it is not the clinicians who are making the relevant research judgments. In order to address the problem of conflict of interest inindustry-sponsored research, fundamental changes in strategy and practice must be adopted which either remove the power to make research decisions from industry employees, or increase the review of those decisions by independent investigators.
18. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
Jane Duran Slavery in Global Context: Rights and Violations
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The work of Cox, Bales, Dingwaney, and others is cited in an effort to construct an argument about the special rights violations of contemporary slavery. It is contended that two forms, debt bondage and sexual slavery, are related and bear close examination.
book review
19. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
George R. Lucas, Jr. Nerds Gone Wild: Can Moore’s Law Remain Valid Indefinitely?
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book discussion
20. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 24 > Issue: 1
Griffin Trotter, M.D., Ph.D. Review of Fritz Allhoff (ed.), Physicians at War: The Dual-Loyalties Challenge
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