25th IVR World Congress: Law, Science and Technology
25th IVR World Congress Law and technology Frankfurt am Main 15–20 August 2011 Paper Series
- Human Rights (3) (remove)
- The place of philosophy of law between justice and efficiency (2012)
- A discussion regarding the complex relationship that exists between the concepts of efficiency and justice goes a long way back and raises several relevant arguments. One of them, and it must be rejected in advance, is that justice is in the realm of public law, while efficiency in that of private law. Is it unacceptable that the balance between public and private law leads to the belief of a divided legal system; one system, one set of laws, one legal system. Legislators and judges are responsible for determining a balance and no theory can postulate that the balance will always be found with a simple cut between public and private law to distinguish when the criterion should be justice or when it should be efficiency. It is reductionist to confine the discussion to single goals of efficiency and justice, when human dignity and human rights should also be considered when one is discussing law. Moreover, a discussion limited to only the concepts of justice and efficiency, relies on a belief that the terms are mutually exclusive. Posner has said that the economic analysis of law has limits and philosophy of law plays an extremely important role in this discourse, which must be interdisciplinary. There can be no goal other than the realization of human rights and there can be no justice if not shared by all of mankind.
- Legal system, repression and human rights in contemporary Spain : some remarks about spanish transition to democracy (2012)
- As is well known, the 2nd Spanish Republic (1931-1936) was toppled by a military uprising which, after a cruel Civil War, set up an autocratic regime led by General Franco which lasted until his natural death in 1975. According to the contemporary theory of the legal system, a legal order exists on the sole condition that it is efficient in general terms and this was the case for both the Republic and the Dictatorship. In turn, the validity of the legal norms of all legal orders is based on its respective rules of recognition. Thus, neither the existence of the legal order nor the validity of its respective legal norms depends on moral considerations. In this paper, we call this affirmation into question on the base of the fact that the compensatory methods adopted from the Transition to Democracy show an evident concern to repair the damage of taking away a person’s basic rights (life, health, freedom, expression, association etc) although the Spanish Constitution, with its catalogue of fundamental rights was not in force at that time. But these measures would not have much sense if, as Raz says, there was no shared content which is common to all legal systems. Like Nino, we claim that one must discriminate between a democratic legal order and an autocratic one to establish the level of validity of its respective legal norms. Thus it can be assigned a presumption of justice to democratic norms. Finally, we state that the criteria to weigh up the justice or injustice of legal norms, as that of legal orders, takes root in the level of respect they show towards human rights.
- From human rights to person rights : legal reflections on posthumanism and human enhancement (2012)
- In the intersection between law, science and technology lies the debate on the overcoming of the boundaries of the biological structure of the human being and its implications on the idea of human rights, on the concept of person and on the conception of equality – being the latter a fundamental tenet of a democracy. Posthumanism assumes a biological inadequacy of the human body regarding the quantity, complexity and quality of information which it can muster. The same occurs with the needs of accuracy, speed or strength demanded by the contemporary environment. Under such perspective, the body is considered to be an inefficient structure, with a short lifespan, easy to break and hard to fix. The body, always seen as the locus for the definition of human, emerges as the object of a commodification process that seeks to exonerate men from their burden - by declination towards a virtual existence, totally free and rational - or to enhance them with bionic devices or drugs. This issue has already been the subject of attention by many scholars like Savulescu, Rodotà, Broston, Fukuyama and even Habermas. Therefore, the aim of this paper is to seek, by criticism and revision of the positions on the foreseen problems of this process, an adequate theoretical approach on issues like the concept of person and its connection with the idea of human rights in order to promote the fundamental statement that all men are equal without disregard to the values of diversity and personal identity.