Jurisprudence 315 University of Miami School of Law

II. Where does one find the Law?

1. Nature

2. Natural Law

Thompson, Chapter 1

In reading Chapter 1 of the Janna Thompson Book, please pay special attention to:

  1. The description of the "realistic" and the "cosmopolitan" views of international law. (If you find this confusing, you may need to go back and look at the book's Introduction, which is short and provides a good summary.)
  2. Thompson's neo-Hobbsian account of the differences between the power relationships between persons on the one hand and nation-states on the other.
  3. Thompson's anti-Hobbsian account of a virtuous circle (she doesn't call it that) that might break out in international relations if nations behaved sensibly towards each other.
  4. Who is the subject of a "right" in Thompson's account of the realist and cosmopolitan viewpoints? When if ever do individuals and/or states "have" "rights"?

With that under your belt, consider the following questions:

  1. Are the responsibilities of the political leader(s) of a state different from judges' duties? From people in other occupations? How?
  2. What duties, if any, do ordinary people in State A owe to people in State B? (And where do they come from if they exist?)
  3. Are nation-states legitimate? What if they hurt other people not part of the state?
  4. When if ever can State A, acting within its official capacities, legitimately do things to outsiders that could not legitimately be done to those same outsiders by individuals within State A?

Consider this hypothetical:

The Sage of Kandi declares holy war on the State of Florida for its warlike and aggressive acts. The Sage is angry because companies based in Florida, acting with the full knowledge, encouragement and sometimes even funding of state authorities, have been advertising holidays in Florida featuring photographs of scantily clad men. This, the Sage believes, is blasphemy of the first order, and he therefore offers a bounty of $10 million to the each person who assassinates various state government officials.

Kandi and the United States have no diplomatic relations; indeed, the U.S. government does not even recognize Kandi as a sovereign nation, although it declared its independence from Choc (which is recognized by the US) over a decade ago.

Assuming that the Sage of Kandi's views are sincere, deeply-held, and generally approved by the people living within the territory claimed to be Kandiland, and that ample funds exist for these bounties, are there any grounds by which either a Realist or a Cosmopolitan could fault the Sage's actions?

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