Academic journal article Canadian Social Science

Reasonability of Policies and Laws - from the Negative Freedom Perspective

Academic journal article Canadian Social Science

Reasonability of Policies and Laws - from the Negative Freedom Perspective

Article excerpt


Government implements public administration mainly by policies and laws which the citizen must abide by. Policies and laws which can be called as legal system are ensured by public power of the government. From perspective of Hayek's negative freedom that the conception of freedom is avoiding arbitrary compulsory from other individuals and organizations even the public government in the modern society. Security of freedom which is realized by setting delimit for behaviors which could prevent arbitrary coercion so that state and government should abandon positive stylized design and should also set reasonable limit for government's power to avoid arbitrary enforcement from public power and guarantee the rights of individuals.

Keywords: Negative freedom; Policies and laws; Public power

Government implements public administration mainly by policies and laws which could be called as the legal system of a state. A series of new policies and laws are promulgated which we should abide by so that everyone is under the network of policies and laws. Comparing with the enaction of laws which must go through a strict procedure, policies are more flexible and more convenient in solving the emergencies and easier to be understood by the public. Government always formulates new policies when needed in some certain circumstances. It is true that policies and laws are the norms which make the social relationships in good order and to a certain extent they can ensure citizen's freedoms and rights, but on the other hand can these so many policies and laws help us in realizing our social members' freedom and protection for the rights of citizens? Especially policies focus more in a special field but not universal to all the circumstances, are they kept with public interests and social justice and do they violate personal freedom? These undoubtedly should be considered by the policy makers and the national legislative bodies.


The principle has been always stressed by sociologists and jurists that in the modern society the legal system could guarantee citizen's safety, rights and can safeguard social fairness and justice. As role of laws the policies' role also comes from public power granted by the Constitution and laws. The legal system including laws and policies which are rules for all the behavior that individuals must obey otherwise they will have to bear legal liabilities. It is an admitted fact that these rules can handle various social contradictions effectively so that we seem to solve problems relying on polices and laws more and more. For example regulation of school buses was announced after accidents took place. Purchase limit was set while prices of real estate are going went upwards continuously. Motor vehicles driving restrictions was operated while the traffic congestion increasing. Almost a series of new laws come into force every year. It is an indisputable fact that many kinds of polices and laws seem to be prescriptions or universal keys to social problems when they are needed. People obey rules in modern legal society which is indeed the salient characteristic in conformity with the principle of ruling by law.

Although the principle of ruling by law is so far the best social arrangement in human society according with human nature, the legal system is not almighty. First, rules in the legal system can't reply the complicated social problems on a flexible way. The legal system is designed to coordinate contradiction and partnership relations by all the social members. As achievement of social development, the rule system is summarized from human behaviors so that it is not all timely or all-inclusive to the social reality especially polices in some given fields regulated by governments at all levels. Second and which is the more important that our lives are hedged around with many regulations and we can't enjoy many sound freedoms. …

Author Advanced search


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.