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What we owe our children, they their children, and..

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  • John Roemer

    (Department of Economics, University of California Davis)

Abstract

Egalitarian theorists, since Rawls, have in the main advocated equalizing some objective standard of individual well-being, such as primary goods, functioning, or resources, rather than subjective welfare. This discussion, however, has assumed, implicitly, a static environment, with a single or perhaps a small number of generations. By studying the problem of equality of opportunity in a society that survives for many generations, we demonstrate that equality of opportunity for some objective condition of individuals is incompatible with a natural notion of human development over time. We argue that this incompatibility can be resolved by equalizing opportunities for welfare. Thus, â??subjectivismâ?? seems necessary if we are to hope for a society which can both equalize opportunities and support the development of human capacity over time.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of California, Davis, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 999.

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Length: 27
Date of creation: 16 Jan 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cda:wpaper:99-9

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