Social and Political Philosophy: Contemporary Perspectives

By James P. Sterba | Go to book overview

TOWARD RECONCILIATION IN SOCIAL AND POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY

James P. Sterba

To have a justified social and political philosophy, one must attend carefully to the views of others, and particularly to the objections they might raise to one’s own views. By attending to the philosophical views of others, and especially to the objections they might raise to one’s own view, one can come to see the need to modify one’s own view, or to develop it in new ways, or at least how to present it in a better fashion so as to be better understood.


Moral methodology

In her contribution to this volume, Eve Browning Cole significantly adds to my discussion of warmaking philosophy by commenting on its history, nature and disadvantages, as well as its attractions. Unfortunately, the warmaking, which Cole laments, dominates not only philosophy and academia generally, but also the media, politics, and the practice of law.

There was a joke going around during Bill Clinton’s first term in office. The president went on a fishing trip with members of the press. After their boat left the dock, the president realized he didn’t have his tackle so he stepped off the boat and walked to shore, picked up his tackle, and walked back over the surface of the water to the boat. The next day’s headline read “CLINTON CAN’T SWIM.” This joke pokes fun at the tendency of the press to give everything a negative slant, to ignore accomplishments and to focus on failures. But the tendency is there.

If we turn from the media to politics, we find, at least in the US, a similar emphasis on negativity and conflict rather than on compromise and governance. For example, Speaker Newt Gingrich opposed Clinton’s healthcare plan, reasoning that if the Democrats succeeded in reforming the healthcare system, they would then be unbeatable. Not surprisingly, a similarly motivated opposition defeated Gingrich’s own plan for restructuring Medicare and Medicaid.

In the law, there is the question of how far one should go in defense of one’s client or to build or prosecute a case against someone. In a lawsuit in California, one side requested tax returns from the other side, which

-425-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Social and Political Philosophy: Contemporary Perspectives
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 482

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    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.