1
   

Can defensive political violence be justified?

 
 
Reply Fri 28 Aug, 2009 09:35 am
Can the legal rules of self-defence and necessity justify militant operations against oppressive organisations, for example multinational companies which kill people in third world countries?

If these rules actually allow that, should politicians change the rules, so that such operations will never be legal?

I am working on a PhD thesis about these questions and will appreciate your comments.
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 1,729 • Replies: 9
No top replies

 
Zetetic11235
 
  1  
Reply Fri 28 Aug, 2009 04:28 pm
@Andreas Winsnes,
Andreas Winsnes;86265 wrote:
Can the legal rules of self-defence and necessity justify militant operations against oppressive organisations, for example multinational companies which kill people in third world countries?


First of all, that would fall under protection of life and limb if anything, but as far as I know such laws only apply to citizens. If you go to Guam and execute 30 children you will not be prosecuted in the U.S. but rather by Guam; or you could be subject to international law (as far as I know). Also, you come to the question; would it be justifiable to directly harm unwitting participants (participants who are such by virtue only of their place of employment) simply because they are part of said organization? How do you deal with culpable denyability (the right hand doesn't need to know the specifics of what the left is doing, just that the results are there)?

Would the militant reaction even indirectly influence the negative actions of the branch of the corporation acting in a third world country? how do you define a militant action?

Andreas Winsnes;86265 wrote:
If these rules actually allow that, should politicians change the rules, so that such operations will never be legal?

I am working on a PhD thesis about these questions and will appreciate your comments.

Link and reference to website removed by moderator!

The thesis of the page in the link provided seems incomplete and weak at best. First one must show that the 'multi-billionare' is directly involved in the act (something which probably will never be doable in practice) then you need to make the highly specious argument that his company's actions (over which he had only partial control) directly resulted in the disenfranchisement of individuals (not that it 'killed' local industry and resulted in local poverty or anything like that but real, flat out extortion, murder, rape, theft or enslavement). On top of that you have to make another specious claim that the U.S. penal code would apply to violations of international law (which I suppose has some precedent, but this seems like a huge stretch).

Furthermore; if you are kidnapping a CEO, are you forcing him to pay out of pocket or out of company funds? If it is the agency that is held to be at fault, you have to use company funds which would most likely have direct negative impact on the average worker (can one justify penalizing the worker?).

On a more personal level; I wholeheartedly agree with their motives, but wholeheartedly disagree with their proposed means. They would not have the resources to prove that Mr.Moneybags is directly endagnering the life and limb of a thousand third world children. What they are doing is trying to broaden the penal code to allow for political terrorism because they think the cause is Just. That is absolutely dangerous and should not be allowed. Harming one individual in order to save a million may seem appealing, but it is not a decision for any of them to make.

They see wrongs in this world that they would like to see rectified, but is broadening the law to allow for non-violent terrosim really the way to do it? What sort of possible consequences could their broadening of the pertinant laws have? The most ironclad case you could make against it is to take it to its logical conclusion and find the worst possible case, then present that as a bit unreasonable and take it down a notch or two. If that less extreme case still seems to be unallowable, you will have most likely fully broken their thesis.
0 Replies
 
Caroline
 
  1  
Reply Fri 28 Aug, 2009 10:19 pm
@Andreas Winsnes,
Andreas Winsnes;86265 wrote:
Can the legal rules of self-defence and necessity justify militant operations against oppressive organisations, for example multinational companies which kill people in third world countries?
Does it make any difference, does carrying out these operations actually stop multi-national companies killing the under-developed word? No, I don't think it's going to stop them so I would be looking for another way to prevent them from doing this.
Andreas Winsnes
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Aug, 2009 05:56 am
@Caroline,
Thanks for replies. First I will like to comment on the deletion of the link to the LAW website. The reason given for this is that the moderator thinks that the link is an attempt at site promotion.

But the link is not site promotion. If I wanted to promote the website I would have chosen other media than a philosophy forum. I published the link because the website contains arguments about philosophy of law and I wanted members on this forum to criticise these arguments and hopefully refute them, so that the website becomes unnecessary and can be shut down for good. Therefore, one can not reasonable say that my intention is site promotion.

To make my point clearer: if I wanted members here to discuss Kant and had a link to arguments on another website which was essential for the debate, then publishing that link can not be viewed as a promotion of that website.

Now that it is clear that I am not here to promote the LAW website but only wish people to refute the arguments presented there, I hope that it is okay that I publish the link once again - Mod Edit - No, it's not OK. If it was it wouldn't have been removed in the first place. Link removed again.

The moderator may choose to remove it this time also, but if that happens I will argue that such silencing of arguments is a betrayal of the Socratic tradition, the discourse ethics of Habermas, and proper scientific procedure in general.

If the link is not removed, let me remind readers to first check out the introduction to the discussion forum of LAW, and especially the article "Perspectivism". The website is rather unorthodox and postmodern, so reading this is necessary to understand it better.


Zetetic wrote that:

Quote:
would it be justifiable to directly harm unwitting participants (participants who are such by virtue only of their place of employment) simply because they are part of said organization? How do you deal with culpable denyability (the right hand doesn't need to know the specifics of what the left is doing, just that the results are there)?
If you read the website, you will see that I have already discussed your arguments there, but let me quickly try to answer your questions:

One should not attack unwitting participants. Culpable deniability can not be used as an argument when the CEO is informed about criminal attacks committed by his or her company and still refuses to do anything to stop the attacks. Then activists should hand the case over to the police, and if they don't do anything quick enough to stop the attacks, one can argue that defensive political violence may be the most pragmatic option if no other non-violent solutions are effective.

Quote:
Furthermore; if you are kidnapping a CEO, are you forcing him to pay out of pocket or out of company funds? If it is the agency that is held to be at fault, you have to use company funds which would most likely have direct negative impact on the average worker (can one justify penalizing the worker?).
Your question is answered here: Mod Edit - Link to forum removed! If he asked the question here, please answer it here.

Quote:
Harming one individual in order to save a million may seem appealing, but it is not a decision for any of them to make.
That is just a statement. A personal opinion. According to the legal rule of necessity one can harm an individual (torture exempted) in order to save a million or ten thousand if no other options are given.

Quote:
The most ironclad case you could make against it is to take it to its logical conclusion and find the worst possible case, then present that as a bit unreasonable and take it down a notch or two. If that less extreme case still seems to be unallowable, you will have most likely fully broken their thesis.
I like ad absurdum arguments, so if you can draw the premises of defensive political violence to absurd conclusions, I will appreciate it. Thanks!
Andreas Winsnes
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Aug, 2009 08:49 pm
@Andreas Winsnes,
The moderator has again deleted the link to the website mentioned. I do not agree with this, but I see that the forum has this rule:

Quote:
NO ADVERTISING - There will be no posting of Affiliate or advertising Links of any kind. This also means advertising for other forums.


I respect that. I will not post the link. But using this rule in this case is very formalistic, and in my opinion it is not in harmony with a scientific procedure. That is okay, but I will not continue the debate in this forum here.
0 Replies
 
jgweed
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Aug, 2009 12:31 pm
@Andreas Winsnes,
That is of course, your choice. But I would think that to be in harmony with scientific procedure, one would want to encourage public discussion without preconditions, even if it meant repeating prior experiments.
If we remember the example of Sokrates, was not his discourse conducted in the streets, roads, and dinner parties of Athens? His inquiries were not limited to cogsnoscenti, but he spoke and questioned with friends and acquaintances he happened to meet, if they cared to spend some time joining in the discussion.
0 Replies
 
Pangloss
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Aug, 2009 12:52 pm
@Andreas Winsnes,
The "forum" on the website you linked to consisted of a few hundred posts all made by yourself, and no discussion whatsoever. Many of the posts were also advocating things like kidnapping corporate ceos, building bombs, and acquiring illegal weapons. Not exactly the type of site that anyone wants to be linking to, in my opinion. It should be easy to restate all of your arguments here.
0 Replies
 
Shadow Dragon
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Aug, 2009 02:03 pm
@Andreas Winsnes,
It shouldn't be the first option, however, people do have the right to defend their homeland if a foriegn power invades it. Though you should only attack the ones directly linked to the killing.
Andreas Winsnes
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Aug, 2009 03:06 pm
@Shadow Dragon,
Quote:
The "forum" on the website you linked to consisted of a few hundred posts all made by yourself, and no discussion whatsoever. Many of the posts were also advocating things like kidnapping corporate ceos, building bombs, and acquiring illegal weapons. Not exactly the type of site that anyone wants to be linking to, in my opinion. It should be easy to restate all of your arguments here.


The reason I have written several hundred posts over a two year period is that I have presented many of the most important arguments from my PhD thesis in the forum. I have also added new arguments and facts which are not in my thesis, but which will be incorporated in it when the debate has progressed further. As I say in the introduction to the discussion forum:

[QUOTE]To avoid answering too many questions, I have written many articles to begin with, so that readers can quickly get an understanding of defensive political violence and the political, ideological and religious frameworks it operates within. In this way, the articles I have initially written in the forum can be compared with an online ebook which presents a topic in depth. [/QUOTE]

The reason there is no discussion there so far is that all those I have invited to refute the arguments in favour of defensive political violence has refused to present their counterarguments in the forum. But I have taken the discussion to other forums and I have copied the arguments there and presented them in my own.

I present ethical and judicial arguments which supports defensive political violence, but I also publish arguments in favour of pacifism. Presenting arguments and having a debate is not the same as "advocating".

There are many websites which discuss military force and the use of weapons which kill innocent women and children during wars in for example Iraq and Afghanistan. If you don't have a problem linking to such websites, one should not have a problem with linking to a website based on a PhD thesis in philosophy.

It is not easy to restate all the arguments in the website, and it should be unnecessary to do it.
0 Replies
 
HexHammer
 
  1  
Reply Tue 4 May, 2010 09:10 am
@Andreas Winsnes,
Andreas Winsnes;86265 wrote:
Can the legal rules of self-defence and necessity justify militant operations against oppressive organisations, for example multinational companies which kill people in third world countries?

If these rules actually allow that, should politicians change the rules, so that such operations will never be legal?

I am working on a PhD thesis about these questions and will appreciate your comments.
Such things are done by many dictator regimes both today and all through history. Even USA has done that to afro americans, homosexuals and communists in their extreme paranoia.

Imo it's very bad, as it usually goes too far, and only causes more problems than solving problems, but I'm sorely ignorent of the actual picture.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

How can we be sure? - Discussion by Raishu-tensho
DOES NOTHING EXIST??? - Question by mark noble
Proof of nonexistence of free will - Discussion by litewave
morals and ethics, how are they different? - Question by existential potential
Destroy My Belief System, Please! - Discussion by Thomas
Star Wars in Philosophy. - Discussion by Logicus
Existence of Everything. - Discussion by Logicus
Is it better to be feared or loved? - Discussion by Black King
 
  1. Forums
  2. » Can defensive political violence be justified?
Copyright © 2019 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.04 seconds on 09/20/2019 at 04:52:45