Obligation - Political Ethics
Fresh AiR
Fresh AiR
Obligation - Political Ethics - Fresh AiR - S02:E05:C02
Obligation - Political Ethics

Obligation – Political Philosophy Chapter 2

We continue our second multi-chapter epiosode with a walk down Obligation.

At the start we say we are going to be covering legitimacy and obligation, however we ran out of time, so will be covering off legitimacy next week.

So what’s in this weeks episode?

The key aspects, but not the entite conversation, includes:

  • What is Obligation?
    • Obligation, in the simplest terms, is an act or course of action to which a person is morally or legally bound; a duty or commitment. – but how does that really apply to politics?
  • Political Obligation Theories
    • A parental analogy: If our relationship to the state is like a relationship with our parents, then we ought to obey the state in the same way that we ought to obey our parents, whilst the state should look after us like our parents do.
    • The benefits argument: Known commonly as ‘the fair play argument’.  We ought to obey a state that we get benefits from, and we ought to contribute to the state because we receive benefits from it.
    • The contract argument: Known commonly as ‘social contract theory’ or the ‘consent argument’.  We are obliged to obey and contribute to the state if we have entered in an agreement or contract with it.  This argument is generally supported by the ‘freedom to leave’ argument, where one is obliged to obey and contribute so long as the individual continues choosing to live in it.
    • The dire consequences argument: Citizens ought not to disobey the state as the consequences would be terrible if everybody disobeyed and the state dissolved or was overthrown.
    • The crass argument: We should obey the state because we will be punished if do not.