Study Questions for Cosmopolitan Justice
by Darrell Moellendorf

Composed by Dr. Jan Garrett

Last revised: March 31, 2003

Chapter 1

1. On what is the book focused? (1) Particularly focused? (2 top)

2. What does Moellendorf (sometimes "M") mean by statism in international law? (3-4) What sort of force is not questioned under statist doctrine? (3)

3. What sort of collective interventions appear to be endorsed by the UN Charter? (4)

4. What view is sometimes called cosmopolitanism? How is this perspective expressed in the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? (5)

5. What perspectives in international law and political science does Moellendorf think his philosophical perspective will complement? (5)

Chapter 2

1. What position does M's cosmopolitanism take on Rawls' famous two principles of justice? (7)

2. How does Rawls' own position, as developed in his writings on the "law of peoples," disagree with M's view? (7-8)

3. In what sense, according to M, is Rawls' justification of principles "political constructivism"? (8)

4. Compare, following Rawls (paraphrased by Moellendorf), the parties behind the Veil of Ignorance in the domestic case (Political Liberalism) with the parties behind the Veil in the international case (involving well-ordered peoples)? (9)

5. What is principle #9 and why does Moellendorf say that liberal peoples would endorse it? What is the significance for M of the fact that Rawls already includes #6 among the principles liberal peoples would endorse? Why does the principle of sovereignty not work as a reason for not including #9? (10-11)

6. Are decent hierarchical peoples (in Rawls' sense) committed to democratic rights? What dilemma does M think Rawls faces? How does Rawls' likely solution pose a problem for sustainable international peace? (11)

The notion of a democratic peace is roughly the notion that a just social order is stable because the parties (persons in the domestic case) within the social order treat each other fairly and regard each other as fairly treated, which they do by according each other a vigorous set of democratic rights. In the just international order of peoples, Rawls seems to assume that a peace will obtain because the parties (now peoples) treat each other fairly and regard each other as fairly treated.

7. In what way does Rawls' account of the liberal law of peoples weaken, or step back from, the egalitarianism of justice as fairness (his theory of the liberal/democratic domestic [national] case)? (12)

8. How did Rawls in 1993 justify dropping the difference principle from the liberal law of peoples? How does M criticize this? (13)

9. What principle #8* does M offer to replace Rawls' #8? (14)

10. Why does M say Rawls has difficulty capturing respect for persons in his account of conditions under which secession may be wrong? (14)

11. Why does Rawls omit #8* and #9? (14-15) What Kantian injunction does M think Rawls is guilty of ignoring? (15)

12. What reasons exist for thinking that decent hierarchical societies cannot exist? (15)

13. In Moellendorf's cosmopolitan construction of the principles of justice what dual function do the representatives [of persons] behind the Veil of Ignorance take on? (16-17)

14. In the cosmopolitan construction with what are the representatives [behind the Veil] chiefly concerned? (17)

15. In the absence of what would it be irrational to prohibit intervention into a state's affairs? From behind the Veil of Ignorance what kind of assurances would be wanted? (17-18)

16. Why does M propose replacing Rawls' principle #6 with #6*? (18)

17. What does M think that Rawls' view of the lack of generality of the principles of justice derived by his constructivist procedure is unwarranted? (What does R fail to distinguish sharply enough?) (18-19)

On p. 20 M points out that the stability of a just democratic order (important to Rawls) is itself an ideal, not the result of achieving agreement among whatever views happen to exist and be believed by large numbers of people.

18. What are the two highest order moral interests? (20) How does M defend the claim that we all have the first interest? (20-21)

19. How does he defend the claim that we have the second interest? (21-22)

20. How does M defend his view that it is rational to develop and maintain the two moral capacities? (23)

21. How do Rawls in Political Liberalism and Kymlicka in his writing handle the problem of toleration within states? (27) Note: M essentially agrees with them about this.

22. Why does Rawls believe that a theory of international justice that would require principles #6*, #8*, and 9 would violate the principle of tolerance? (26-27, 28)

23. What does cosmopolitan justice think of the regimes Rawls calls "decent hierarchical regimes"? How does Rawls get into the problem of tolerating what from the cosmopolitan perspective should not be tolerated? (28)

24. When would there be a prima facie case for other states not complying with the principle of nonintervention? (29)

Chapter 3

1. What limits on the duties of justice does Moellendorf recognize in the first para in the section on "duties of justice"? (31)

2. What is meant by an "institutional conception" of justice? (31)

3. When do duties of justice arise? (32-33)

4. Which associational duties are especially duties of justice? (33)

5. What, in M's view, produces the duties of egalitarian justice? Which comes first (or which thing explains the other), the fact of association or the duties of justice? (34)

6. How does Tamir's view differ from M's? How does M argue against the view that certain duties dependent upon the duty-bearer are "mind-dependent"? (35)

7. Why does M argue against the view that duties of justice do not depend upon the attitude of those to whom the duty is owed? (35-36)

8. What evidence does M give that a global association now exists? Why is it misleading to consider this merely an economic association? (36-37)

9. Distinguish "legal positivism" from "justice positivism." (39) What does justice positivism lack? What aspect of "fairness" does Barry miss, according to M? (39)

10. How does Nussbaum defend special moral duties to one's own family? (40)

11. How is the comparison of ("patriotic") duties (to one's country) to duties to one's family often used to demand a sacrifice of the general demands of morality? (40)

12. What according to M is the source of the tension between duties to compatriots and duties to noncompatriots? (40) How are such conflicts to be resolved? (41)

13. M says "new or local duties of justice are acquired within a background of the more general duties of justice, and as such they may not contravene these more general duties." (41) How does he illustrate this point?

14. Distinguish between Goodin's, Rawls', and M's accounts of the relationship between duties of justice owed to compatriots (DJC) and those owed non-compatriots (DJNC). (41-42)

15. In the apparent conflict between DJC and DJNC, what role do considerations of generality and temporal priority tend to play? (43)

16. What methodological point follows from the reasoning on p. 43 (see bottom)?

17. What three arguments in favor of prioritizing the interests of compatriots does M consider? How does he argue against each of them? (44-46)

18. What reason mentioned on p. 47 do some give for defending the interests of compatriots over impartial justice? How does M respond? (47-48)

19. What account of patriotism does M find plausible? What two reasons does he give for differentiating duties to compatriots and non-compatriots? (48)

20. What case does M make for fair equality of opportunity (FEO)? What would FEO entail on an international scale? Why does M say that FEO is minimally egalitarian? (48-49)

21. When are claims competitive? What specific competitive claims is he discussing? (49)

22. What are three possible ways of resolving competitive claims? (49) Why does Miller's solution fail? (50)

23. In the case under discussion, what would be best (from the perspective of justice)? What moral loss does Moellendorf suppose and say should be recognized if it occurs? In this situation what does effective response demand? Is this a justification for prioritizing domestic duties of justice? (50)

24. How do co-nationals differ from compatriots? What follows if one must identify oneself as a member of a nation (e.g., Iroquois Indians) in order to be such? What are strong nationalists? Weak nationalists? (51)

25. What is Kymlicka's view about cultural membership? Does it entail weak or strong nationalism? (51)

26. Does cultural relativism about justice in itself imply strong or weak nationalism? Explain. (51-52)

27. How does Hurka defend weak nationalism? What is the first difficulty with such an argument? What distinction does Hurka blur? (52)

28. Does M think that duties to family members are duties of justice? What reasons can he give for such a position? (53)

29. What two problems, according to M, confront the weak nationalist position? (53)

30. What special problem arises for nationalists like Tamir? (53-54)

31. What is protectionism? Who benefits and who loses from protectionism? What principle do protectionist policies seem to violate? (55)

32. What are the first two defenses of protectionism that M considers? How does he respond to them? (56-57)

In the pages that follow M considers several different approaches to "underdevelopment," inferior labor standards, and inferior environmental standards: They include: (1) protectionism, (2) "free trade," (3) "fair trade," (4) international standards, and (5) resource transfer.

33. How does Falk defend protectionism in certain countries? Why does M find his argument unsatisfactory? (57-58) What laws that are sometimes considered protectionist under current WTO rules does M defend by arguing that they are not protectionist? How does he show that they are not protectionist? (58-59)

34. In what does the unfairness of "free trade" lie? How is the fair trade p osition superior to the protectionist position? What moral problems of its own does the fair trade position raise? (59-60)

35. What advantages do international standards have over bilateral approaches? (60)

36. To what do developing countries need access? In M's view, is this superior to fair trade policies as a solution to underdevelopment and poor working and environmental conditions? (61)

37. How are immigration restrictions similar to protectionist trade policies? (61) Apart from violating equal opportunity, what right do immigration restrictions seem to violate? (62)

38. What is Walzer's position on immigration controls and how does M respond to it? (62)

39. One argument in favor of immigration controls appeals to rights of taxpayers. How does M respond to this argument? (62-63)

40. Another argument in favor of immigration controls claims that current citizens may be harmed by economic immigration. How does M evaluate this argument? (63)

41. Sometimes immigrations controls are advocated to prevent the growth of wealth differentials within a country. How does M evaluate this argument? (64)

42. How might cultural preservation (together with the Rawlsian idea of the priority of liberty) be used as a basis for defending immigration restrictions? (64-65)

43. What arguments does M use to restrict the apparent potency of the previous argument? (65) Are all his qualifications plausible? Are there any cases left in which immigration restrictions might after all be justified for the sake of cultural preservation?

44. What "further reason" for restricting immigration does M consider? What scenario does M consider under which the argument here might be sound? (65-66)

45. To what, under present circumstances, does the case for limiting immigration in order to protect just institutions run perilously close? Why might there be "merit in such a policy despite this danger"? (66)