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Integrity and Agreement: Economics When Principles Also Matter

by Lanse Minkler

Social scientists who treat humans as rational beings driven exclusively by self-interest ignore a key factor shaping human behavior: the influence of moral principles. Starting with the elementary principle "lying is wrong," economic theorist Lanse Minkler examines the ways in which a sense of morality guides real-life decision making. Whether one feels committed to specific or general moral principles, Minkler explains, integrity demands consistently acting on that commitment. Because truthfulness is the most basic moral principle, integrity means honesty. And honesty extends beyond truth-telling. It requires good faith when entering an agreement and then standing by one's word. From this premise, Minkler explores the implications of integrity for contracts between buyers and sellers and understandings between employers and employees. He also finds a role for integrity in an individual's religious vows, an elected official's accountability to constituents, and a community's obligation to human rights. Integrity and Agreement reintroduces morality as a factor for economists, sociologists, psychologists, and political scientists to consider in their efforts to comprehend human behavior.

The State of Economic and Social Human Rights

by Lanse Minkler

This edited volume offers original scholarship on economic and social human rights from leading and new cutting-edge scholars in the fields of economics, law, political science, sociology, and anthropology. It analyzes the core economic and social rights and the crucial topic of nondiscrimination, and includes an innovative section on "meta" rights. The main chapters answer important questions about economic and social rights performance around the world by emphasizing the obstacles that prevent governments from fulfilling their obligations. The interdisciplinary analysis offers a detailed and up-to-date discussion to help scholars and policy makers find the best ways to instantiate economic and social rights. The authors examine the role of the associated obligations, and especially the obstacles to respect, protect, and fulfill those obligations. The book's introductory and concluding chapters address conceptual issues and correct mistakes often made by critics of economic and social rights.

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