Private Property Rights, Moral Extensionism and the Wise-Use Movement: A Rawlsian Analysis
AbstractEfforts to protect endangered species by regulating the use of privately owned lands are routinely resisted by appeal to the private property rights of landowners. Recently, the 'wise-use' movement has emerged as a primary representative of these landowners' claims. In addressing the issues raised by the wise-use movement and others like them, legal scholars and philosophers have typically examined the scope of private property rights and the extent to which these rights should influence public policy decisions when weighed against other moral considerations. Whether from an anthropocentric standpoint or from a perspective of moral extensionism, the key question seems to be the extent to which prima facie property rights are overridden by other moral interests, not whether such rights claims can reasonably be appealed to at all in public discussions of environmental justice. I argue, however, that a morally extensionist perspective not only introduces more potential defeaters of prima facie property rights, but actually strips appeals to private property rights of their moral significance. Hence, I argue on Rawlsian grounds that appealing to private property rights in the way that the wise-use movement does is unreasonable in a pluralistic society. In so doing, I show that a Rawlsian perspective may be more congenial to the interests of moral extensionists than is typically thought.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by White Horse Press in its journal Environmental Values.
Volume (Year): 13 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.erica.demon.co.uk
Anthropocentrism; Endangered Species Act; moral extensionism; property rights; John Rawls; wise-use movement;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- P14 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Property Rights
- Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Andrew Johnson).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.