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The Status Quo in Contractarian-Constitutionalist Perspective


  • Viktor J. Vanberg



That it favors the status quo is one of the most common and persistent objections raised against the contractarian-constitutionalist approach and, specifically, against its emphasis on voluntary agreement as the fundamental legitimizing principle for social reform. This paper seeks to clarify certain ambiguities that have surrounded the arguments of critics as well as contractarian responses to them. Its main emphasis will be on separating two issues the differences between which have not always been sufficiently recognized in the debate, namely, on the one hand, the role of the status quo as the inevitable starting point of any change and, on the other hand, the issue of the normative evaluation of the status quo.

Suggested Citation

  • Viktor J. Vanberg, 2004. "The Status Quo in Contractarian-Constitutionalist Perspective," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 153-170, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:copoec:v:15:y:2004:i:2:p:153-170

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    Cited by:

    1. Wohlgemuth, Michael, 2005. "Politik und Emotionen: Emotionale Politikgrundlagen und Politiken indirekter Emotionssteuerung," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 05/9, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    2. Christian Cordes & Christian Schubert, 2007. "Toward a naturalistic foundation of the social contract," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 35-62, March.
    3. Zweynert, Joachim, 2007. "Die Entstehung ordnungsökonomischer Paradigmen: Theoriegeschichtliche Betrachtungen," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 07/8, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    4. Wohlgemuth Michael, 2008. "50 Jahre Europäische Ordnungspolitik: ordnungs- und konstitutionenökonomische Anmerkungen / 50 years of European „Ordnungspolitik”, remarks from a constitutional economics perspective," ORDO. Jahrbuch für die Ordnung von Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft, De Gruyter, vol. 59(1), pages 381-404, January.
    5. Berthold, Norbert & Brunner, Alexander, 2009. "Gibt es ein europäisches Sozialmodell?," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 09/5, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    6. Vanberg, Viktor J., 2005. "Das Paradoxon der Marktwirtschaft: Die Verfassung des Marktes und das Problem der "sozialen Sicherheit"," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 05/5, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    7. Wohlgemuth, Michael, 2006. "Demokratie und Marktwirtschaft als Bedingungen für sozialen Fortschritt," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 06/1, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    8. Borella, Sara, 2008. "EU-Migrationspolitik: Bremse statt Motor der Liberalisierung," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 08/10, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    9. Goldschmidt, Nils, 2009. "Liberalismus als Kulturideal: Wilhelm Röpke und die kulturelle Ökonomik," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 09/2, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    10. Vanberg, Viktor J., 2008. "Markt und Staat in einer globalisierten Welt: Die ordnungsökonomische Perspektive," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 08/8, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    11. Albert, Hans, 2004. "Wirtschaft, Politik und Freiheit: Das Freiburger Erbe," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 04/8, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    12. John Meadowcroft, 2014. "Exchange, unanimity and consent: a defence of the public choice account of power," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 158(1), pages 85-100, January.
    13. Wohlgemuth, Michael, 2009. "Diagnosen der Moderne: Friedrich A. von Hayek," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 09/9, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..

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