[SydPhil] Notification: Lachlan Umbers @ Thu 15 Oct 2015 15:00 - 16:30 (Current Projects)

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Fri Oct 9 14:59:48 AEDT 2015

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Title: Lachlan Umbers
Title: Against Lottocracy

Abstract: Popular dissatisfaction with contemporary democratic institutions  
has run high in recent years. It is perhaps unsurprising, then, that  
political philosophers have begun to turn their attention to possible  
alternatives modes of political decision-making. The most interesting and  
plausible of these proposals all involve reliance on lotteries in some way  
or other - as a means of determining which citizens are to be enfranchised,  
as a means of selecting representatives, or as a means of making social  
choices. These systems promise improvements in the quality of decisions  
made, of the outcomes realised, or in the intrinsic fairness of the  
political process, while maintaining the egalitarian appeal of conventional  
democratic institutions. My aim in this paper is to defend the relative  
merits of universal suffrage, majority rule and electoral representation  
against these proposals. I argue that each of these 'lottocratic' systems  
would on the one hand be likely to yield undesirable consequences and, on  
the other, are inconsistent with individuals' rights as equal, autonomous  
agents and are thereby objectionable on non-instrumental grounds also.  
These considerations give us reasons, I suggest, to regard conventional  
modes of democratic social organisation as the best justified among the set  
of inevitably imperfect alternatives.
When: Thu 15 Oct 2015 15:00 - 16:30 Eastern Time - Melbourne, Sydney
Calendar: Current Projects
     * Kristie Miller- creator

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