Christopher Kutz – "Democratic Holy Wars" (2012 'Or 'Emet Lecture – Nathanson Centre, 16 Feb 2012)

so I think we’ll get started and the only reason for any formality at all is that we’re recording this and because it is in addition to a lively and engaging talk you’re about to experience also a chance for the school to express what a significant moment this is for us each year when the or Emmett lecture comes around and as the Dean of the law school I want to welcome those who aren’t normally part of the ebb and flow of life here and this is one of the real strengths of bringing the or Emma together with the Nathanson Center is that it brings that element of interdisciplinarity to it the or Emmett is got an odd trajectory in in this sense it takes its name as some of you will know from the Hebrew meeting light of truth and that seems entirely appropriate for a lecture series but gained its origins actually out of some contested litigation unhappy origin by any stretch but it led to seed money and a bit of a dispute about what to do with it and the decision was that it should go to fund this series at Osgoode and even before coming together with a Nathanson center it had featured people like Martha Minow Derek Bell Duncan Kennedy John finis John Gardner list is a long and illustrious one and it’s been a consistent point of reference for many around Osgood’s commitment to both exposing our community to the very best of scholarship and to contributing to it in a collaborative and and again interactive way that jacket made Nathanson Center on transnational human rights crime and security is of course now a lively home for this series and its themes have come to infuse some new life and sharper focus in in the or Emmett as well so we are getting I think today is a fusion of topics and perspectives in in in in this in this lecture that brings together themes that we’ve been discussing in different fora here for for many years and we had a chance over lunch just to talk about some current events and how many themes in Chris’s work are picked up on in things that we are taking from the headlines every day here so it’s a pleasure to welcome him but i’ll let francois tanguay Renault do the formal introduction of the speaker so it just is left for me to say again that we want to welcome you here to the Oscar community welcome again the friends from philosophy and I know some have traveled from as far away as Hamilton to be here I not to mention Glendon and points further afield and it’s going to be a treat looking forward to it and with that let me turn it over to Francois mr. Dean colleagues distinguished guests graduate students and njd students on behalf of the jack and may Nathanson center on transnational human rights crime and security and the ontario legal philosophy partnership have the pleasure of welcoming 22 oz good today professor christopher cuts who is professor of law at boalt hall law school at the University of California at Berkeley professor cuts joined the the jurisprudence and social policy program in 1998 at Berkeley and in 2006 he assumed the directorship of the the k dash Center for morality law and in public affairs professor cuts clerked for judge stephen f williams of the US court of appeals of the District of Columbia and was a visiting professor professor sorry at Columbia and Stanford Law School’s his work focuses on moral political and legal philosophy and he has a particular interest in the foundations of criminal law international law and constitutional law I first encountered professor Kurtz’s

work at a conference that was held in Oxford in june two thousand and five on the topic of of complicity while i was still a graduate student in oxford and there he engaged in a spirited exchange with my my former supervisor at the time John Gardner who was as the Dean pointed out himself a former orem at lecture and the debate was on the nature of complicity in morality and law now for me that was one of those moments of reckoning right the moment were one and and I think any graduate student encounters that moment at some point and probably better if it had been sooner than later but the moment where one has to come to terms with the fact that yes once one supervisor may actually not have worked it all out as always professors could argument was sharp eloquently presented in fact devastating and and at the same time always presented with the siyum the same care and cordial way now to be sure after much thought and and I suppose that’s the nature of the philosophical and over well I found myself disagreeing with both John and and Chris but I certainly learned a lot from Chris on that day you know I I I became a better philosopher saying that I ought to be suspicious of my of my supervisor now Chris certainly remains a master of the specific question that is complicity his book complicity ethics and law for a collective age which was published in 2000 by Cambridge University Press which is one of those very rare philosophical best must say addresses the question of individual and moral legal responsibilities 444 harms that are brought about through collective and corporate activity professor cuts has also published in articles in leading journals that are too numerous to numerous to list but including the yale law journal the california law review philosophy and public affair legal theory and so forth his current work centers on democratic theory the law of war the metaphysics of criminal law and the nature of political legitimacy his lecture today and title the market egg holy wars is I think an extension of of this work on the same theme now in a day and age where democracy perhaps alongside human rights or sometimes it’s self frame as a human rights that is democracy tends to be portrayed as the West’s answer to two let’s call it militarized jihad as ultimate justification for international resort the arms so think only of Iraq Afghanistan Libya so given this the topic is no doubt very timely is bringing about or perhaps a sustaining democracy always or even ever a good or a sufficient reason to go to war or to intervene militarily in another states business if so what is so magical about this thing about this institution or a some would have it this practice the societal practice that is democracy if not then what is it that our political leaders don’t understand about democracy which which leads them to think that or at least a claim that indeed democracy is a good reason to go to war or to intervene militarily the question is no doubt daunting and we are fortunate to have with us today professor Christopher cuts who hopefully will help us see through the fog the fog of everyday life that we’re encountering in our nation states now the format of the seminar professor codes will speak for approximately 15 minutes to an hour and this will be followed by a short Q&A session now there is a seminar that will be held tomorrow at from 2 30 to 4 30 in room 4034 in which we will discuss the lecture so if you’re planning to attend a seminar and you have deep insertion question we would ask you to remain to keep to keep them for for tomorrow and tomorrow we Phillip Hudson from the Department the philosophy here at York and myself will respond to Professor coats and then you will again correct us and hopefully help me see the light once more the light of truth or Emmett so so this is it for the format today it’s

also the case that the conference today that the lecture is going to be followed by a reception which will be held outside the moot court so I thank you very much for being present here today and without further ado on démocratique holy wars professor christopher quits switch this on and this is that’s all thank you very much Dean Francois thank you for the invitation I’m enormously honored and flattered to be here to be here in the distinguished lineage of or emmett lecturers I’m thrilled by the introduction although I must say I feel a little guilty about contributing to a parricide the the slaying of ones ones graduate advisor but I’m happy to have provided some service in that way it’s a form of necessary violence and Self Self Realization I’m going to talk about other forms of violence and self-realization today the violence violence a revolution to some extent but mainly the violence of intervention and as france + said this is a paper that comes out of a broader work a book I’m completing now on democracy and wore a book which takes as its prompt the idea that our principles of war our Yoo si Bella more principles for the justification going to war and our principles of conduct in war or use in Bello predate democratic thinking the yo side bellum emerges from a tradition of sovereign states and strong conceptions of sovereignty of resume data of real politics as justifying war our use in Bello descends variously from a chivalric tradition upon a conception of virtue and from I think more generally in least in the 19th century a more general utilitarianism which sees the saving of lives as a paramount value we’ve moved in some ways beyond both those traditions both in our practical politics but also in our philosophical aspirations we’ve moved towards what’s my mind is a perhaps pernicious focus on democracy as the sole legitimating value and the book from which this paper is drawn is an attempt to look at what happens if we take democracy seriously what happens for better or for worse to our thinking about the doctrines of democracy of the USA bellum in the u.s in Bello there’s a particular thing that I’m concerned about and this paper touches on it which is that we the the the Just War theory was dogged for a long time by an over moralization the idea that war was a form of justified punishment for wrongdoing and brutal as the you know centuries of war have been the move from that moralized view of war of you which can legitimate virtually anything done in war to a non moral an amoral conception but it’s sometimes called a conception of regular war I think had some limiting influence I worry now with the focus on democracy that we’re moving back into a moralized theory of war and that is the hint for the title of my paper Democratic holy wars I can’t remember if I did a question mark or not to the title but there’s meant to be a question mark and I’ll leave it to you to decide how to answer that question it is a principle universally acknowledged that an international system and wanta the structure of mutual respect and forbearance is a system on the edge of anarchy it is a further commonplace that the tradition of Westphalia and sovereignty is but is buried beneath the legacy of Cold War politics in increasingly potent international human rights politics a doctrine of legitimacy and international affairs that before rested mainly on territorial control now reflects a messy normative calculus of comedy individual rights and balance of power politics a calculus that provides few assurances and practice and none in theory the absence of a coherent theory of Interstate respect and forbearance has provided opportunities for mischief both political and intellectual neoconservatives sometimes joined by liberal scholars have treated the absence of domestic democratic institutions as an argument for military and political intervention while pro-democratic humanitarian interventions are hardly the norm in international affairs the gathering momentum behind the movement spurred by the grotesque failure of the developed world to act in Rwanda in 1994 should give us pause plus the emerging doctrine become not a force for humanity but a broad license for war this is the risk of democratic holy wars that the presumption of non-interference be replaced by presumption of righteous violence if the context is political the problem is also conceptual without a post westphalian

theory of state personality our conceptual resources are too limited to describe the normative contours of our political collectives too weak to provide the bulwark against the routinization of international adventures well Royal Mint democracy is I think too strong a concept too limited in its justified application to legitimating in its aspirations responding to the collapse of traditional conceptions of sovereignty John Rawls and Michael Walzer both following John Stuart Mill have tried to resurrect the concept of the people linked by culture and history if not by institutions as the bearer of Rights of forbearance and self-defense but respect for a shared culture is too weak given the hybrid and completing competing cultures and identities of virtually every polity most polities indeed are caught in the middle undemocratic and culturally plural as such they lack a principled presumption against international intervention there instead protected only by the contingent calculus of interests even taking for granted the rights and duties of international society to intervene in cases of genocide I’ll massacre the middle ground is one that needs to be made more secure conceptually and politically this is the middle ground of for lack of a better term what might one might call run-of-the-mill authoritarian violence not enough or ethno nationally targeted enough to trigger the Genocide Convention but enough to stir international outrage it is the middle ground now of Syria Bahrain and Libya and it has been the ground of much of Latin America in this lecture I try to fill the middle ground with an account of the moral standing of political communities that lack both full democratic pedigrees and common sympathies an account that entails both qualified rights of self-defense and qualified duties of other states to forbear from intervention by looking to the moral core of what I call active political community a core that can but need not be realized through democratic procedures we can recover some of the moral ground of sovereignty without retreating twist fillion statism the salient characteristic of a defensible community I argue is the way in which its collective activity is manifest an agency that depends upon but is not constituted by the ties of identity culture and sympathy this activity which can broadly and vaguely be called politics has a distinctive intrinsic value and it is indeed this value that forms the core of what we admire democratic states but it is in the nature of the value of collective political agency that it is best respected by being admired from afar rather than managed directly is at the base of the hard doctrine non-intervention urged by mill and latterly by michael walter a doctrine that requires standing back as people stumble and fall rather than following the instincts the cosmopolitan heart and rushing in with aid now few people today directly advocate an armed intervention simply to promote democracy though such arguments were famously made by the Bush administration about Iraq and the Clinton administration about Haiti rather the argument for democracy promotion tends to ride in the saddle of a bet of the better established principle of massacre prevention a principle institutionalized now is the responsibility to protect or RTP the r2p doctrine has embedded in security council resolution 1674 permits armed interventions in cases of genocide war crimes ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity the basis is simple a state that fails to protect its citizens can make no claim to external legitimacy specifically no claim to an monopoly on the right to govern and control its subjects it is hence open to other states to provide the missing protection through their intervention the r2p policy limits itself to crimes of extreme state violence but the logic is not so limited if a state is depriving its citizens of other forms of basic justice then elect standing in political morality to object intervention access to democratic institutions is a demand a basic justice a state therefore depriving its citizens of that access has no standing to object to an intervention by others to provide them moreover other states to the extent they recognize a global duty to create the conditions of justice find themselves with a duty to intervene when it seems they can do more harm than good this anyway is the logic of the position the temptation to for democracies to fight holy wars it’s my perhaps overheated title puts it the argument from and for democracy is so potent because democracy incorporates such a rich range of values including values of self-realization collective deliberation and the construction of institutions of social justice as a result it’s prescription for action its global RIT is correspondingly broad limited only by the values internal to democracy itself if abiding in a democratic polity represents the greatest hope for Humanity intent on living autonomously and in conditions of justice then democracy is what people deserve everywhere and it should be brought to them unless they’re positive

reasons to observe pragmatic arguments about blowback and unintended consequences reflect constraints on the view but the general form of the argument to limit intervention must come from an interpretation of democracy itself for democracy represents the highest form of politics it’s valuable Trump any considerations not themselves resting and democratic footings the basic philosophical inquiry is the first step my talk today the next is going to be a translation into policy and I can only offer a hint of that translation in particular I want to examine two policy questions at the border of the conceptual discussion first under what conditions short of imminent and preventable massive loss of life crimes against humanity or genocide can forcible intervention be justified second short of armed intervention what other forms of external interference in political development are permissible I will argue that in fact accepting the demand that democracies stand and fall on their own entail sharp limits even to the kind of non force a blade that can be provided to struggling democracies a limit of transparent non-coercive aid I fully recognized such a limit effectively rewards those authoritarian regimes most successful in tamping down Democratic movements but I see no defensible alternative let us start the inquiry by looking back to Libya NATO and much of the West and the Arab League struggled with these questions in initiating what as I’ve at least now has been a successful intervention in Libya though its long-term prospects remain unknowable and its repercussions are clearly haunting international cooperation in the current civil conflict in Syria the intervention was immediately justified terms of Qadhafi’s threat to hunt down and exterminate in their closets he said all of his opponents but within days it became at the behest of France in the United States acuesta rid Libya Gaddafi period and to try to keep a light the spirit of the Arab Spring the spirit of Democratic protest as a first genuine instance of UN sanctioned intervention grounded in the r2p principle livia should have been limited to Massacre prevention but once the material was in place and the sorties were being flown once the possible Security Council vetoes have been overcome in favor of the abstentions of Russia and China there was no natural limit to the mission only potential differences in tactics a combination of bombings and diplomacy to remove Qaddafi was further interventions to install civil democracy indeed the more poorly organized the rebel force of Libya came to appear the greater the necessary role for intervening parties the legitimacy of all this of course was predicated on the Democratic games and character of the intervenors satisfying the new highly moralized geo sebelum of democracy such the war is justified when fought for democratic aims by democratic principalities the worry of course is that this is not a stable recipe for a system of peace and international relations it’s a recipe for a system instead of superpowers and subaltern states the latter always vulnerable to the judgments of the former whether intervention should be pursued perhaps this is more or less the world we live in in which some powers exercised a benign surveillance over others but it falls short of an ideal of public interstate life that is also appealing one grounded in the analogy to the life of citizens who that we expect the sorry analogy to the life of citizens of toleration for patterns of life that may not please even if they do not exceed more if if they do not exceed more stringent norms what we seek in other words for democracies and for the world is an ethics of democratic foreign policy that limits the temptation to war it finds intrinsic limits to the value of promoting democratic value remove to the conceptual issues let me name and respond what I imagine is the response many of you have already formed it’s just a matter of costs and benefits on the one hand we know from painful experience that armed interventions frequently make things worse for the state targeted for intervention by releasing civil and ethnic conflict with no authority to channel and manage the conflict we know the further risk that interventions will create suspicions frequently justified in the targeted state of whatever group comes to power in its wake in tailing the perverse loss of legitimacy for the secular democratic states and intervenors are most likely to want to support and bring it to being on the other hand we know or if some reason to think that certain interventions can be helpful it was I understand that the jury is still out on many of them Kosovo was probably the closest example to a consensus success story after a multi-year occupation with enormous expenditures of time money and trust in imperfect local institutions a reasonably stable and legitimate multi-ethnic state has emerged well you might conclude from these truisms is that just that it is a matter of empirical guesswork that the right policy is simply a pragmatic and cautious one the r2p policy is a basic gatekeeper democratic states should intervene or should deepen their interventions when and only when the intervention is likely to make things better what we need in other words is

not more philosophy but better empirics better ways to evaluate ex ante the success of these adventures let us call this the pragmatic view of course the pragmatic view is consistent with a highly conservative conclusion that interventions are almost never likely to leave targeted States net better off and at the knock-on effects of destabilizing international relations tip the balance yet further but ultimately it’s all costs and benefits now the empirical aspect of the question can’t be avoided and of course in real politics ad hoc and contextual decision-making will always be necessary but the short response to the pragmatic view is that we are simply fooling ourselves if we think that our predictive powers are sufficient to generate reliable answers to these questions there are far too many variables in play with two complicated power dynamics between internal parties and external state interests for the basic intervene or not decision to be rationally guided the empirical fog is what calls out for the searchlight of principle here is elsewhere we can’t avoid the philosophical inquiry so I’m going to begin the philosophical inquiry with a somewhat silly example is are prone to do I imagine you Canadians gazing across your southern border in assessing the problems of the US healthcare system you might conclude reasonably enough that an important dimension of justice would be better served if the u.s. were to adopt a fully national and universal single-payer healthcare program you also conclude reasonably enough that there is a little political prospect of this change and much reason to think that even the marginal improvements of recent years be overturned by the election of a Republican president the poor coverage of the US healthcare system has a serious human toll estimated recently is at least 45,000 preventable deaths per year its deaths that would be avoided with the universal health care you Canadians however have determined that a relatively bloodless incursion into the US would cost no more than about 5,000 lives mostly military giving about a nine to one ratio of lives saved to those lost and thus the costs of the invasion would be reasonably proportional to the benefits with those costs as necessary to the goal bringing about basic justice I’ll candidly admit that something like this has stirred the fantasies of at least one American in Micah Native Philip moments but I assume that in a more reflective moment both Americans and Canadians would agree that whatever the proportionality calculus says such an invasion would be impermissible and that Americans would be entitled to defend against it both soldiers and citizens in olave on mass moreover such a defense would be justified I think an international law agrees even if it would result in many more than 45,000 lives being lost perhaps not everyone agrees some philosophers do believe that a so-called bloodless invasion of the sort would not justify self-defense but such a position is to say the least radically counterintuitive so the question is what grounds the intuition that it’s permissible for Americans to kill to defend their right to an adequate health care not this answer is provided by democratic values an American might well say that deplorable as our policy of radically unequal access to medical care is is all the same our policy grounded in our democratic politics and that policy and that policy choice deserves respect and non-interference because it is a product of a just decision making process perhaps but now let us to complicate the example slightly you look a little more closely at the United States and you note that not only is our system of healthcare access deeply unjust but that our institutions are far from democratic you note the extraordinary role played by private money in u.s. elections and interstitial politics and the fact that campaign donations from those who profit from the private insurance driven care system have an effective veto over more radical policy innovations you might also note a little more contentiously that corporate funded advertising vitiates the legitimating value of american public opinion as well and so you conclude that not only does respect for democracy not stand in the way of invasion but you can even accomplish two goals of Justice instituting comprehensive transparent public public ly funded campaigning as well as a single-payer health care system what’s not to like I suspect though that most of you would nonetheless hesitate to declare the Canadian invasion permissible or American self-defense impermissible even if justice could be furthered democratic institutions enhanced at a modest cost in lives the invasion would be wrong of course they’re all sorts of pragmatic reasons to think it would be wrong even if we think it would be successful in these cases not least the destabilizing effects of the invasion policy for the entire international system providing excuses for Less benevolently intended acts of war the youth by the bush administration lawyers of the Kosovo precedent for non UN sanctioned intervention to justify the Iraq war provides a cautionary tale but such costs might be worth bearing first the precedent might not in fact increase the number of bad invasions arguably such invasions will happen anyway and it’s

only the window dressing that changes second with more invasions more justice might be realized around the world and so the long-term effects might be net positive given as I mentioned above the hand waving quality to arguments about practical effects I think such calculations do not lie at the core of the concern something else does before I say what the concern properly is I should address one other possibility that we should distinguish between the permissibility of intervention and a right of self-defense well we naturally think of the first as negating the second as if you have a right to intervene the intervene state does not have a right to defend it could be the case that we are entitled to intervene even though the targeted state is entitled to resist in the extreme r2p case the answer is clearly no a state that assaults its own people has no legitimate basis for self-defense but in cases short of mere in case a short of r2p the cases of imperfect institutions the question is more difficult the old philosophical chestnut of the two men wrestling for a plank is another example of the right to struggle the ethical permissibility of mutually assured destruction doctrine just an open question to be sure but it’s predicated as well on such rights of both sides being permitted to attack and defend the right of intervention might be in some instances something like a right to struggle or to compete for a share of limited resources there’s no logical inconsistency in the coexistence of the Liberty rights of the two parties to vie for a single path to life even outside the context of existential threats we might think that permissions to intervene and to defend are consistent take an analogy from individual life and imagine an individual suffering from a drug addiction but not so impaired in other respects that he poses an immediate threat to himself or to others friends or family might plausibly claim justification and hiring a kidnapper to take him to a treatment center even as the individual retains the right to struggle against the kidnapping to leave the treatment center if opportunity arises in effect this reflects a conflict between different interests promoted by paternalism on the one hand including the interests of those who love the addict and the interest protected by concern for autonomy on the other hand both sets of interests are real and neither is fully reducible to the other our interest in autonomy is not just a matter of belief that autonomous choice serves our other interests best balancing the two is a matter of understanding the addict as both a continuing person with a stake in his future a future that will be better without the addiction and as someone with a stake in is present there’s no general formula for how the interest will balance out against each other but the point I wish to make your simply is that we can recognize simultaneously the argument for intervention and the argument for self-defense let us now return to the International plane and u.s. Canadian relations with the u.s. cast on the role of the addict now states are not individuals and there are serious limits to the force of any argument by analogy but the ways in which the analogy does not hold emphasize the force of the argument for self-defense and weaken the argument for intervention in the individual case the unspoken frame of the example includes the following an understanding of addiction as an objective impairment of some normal rational and physical capacities of self-direction a perspective which assumes that the intervening actors have adequate have accurately characterized the condition of the addict as an addiction as an addict and an assumption that the addiction once resolved we’ll leave the addict with ordinary capacities of self-governance but democratic incapacity in a nation by which I mean the failure of processes to meet democratic standards of weighing interest equally in resolving collective policy this arguably not like physical addiction in a state or polity with a prolonged period of imperfectly democratic or authoritarian politics there is no healthy inner self struggling against political and capacitation no self to be healed or restored by an intervention there’s only a hope for a future a hope that such as self can be constituted through the intervention and we have to say the least no reason to think that outside political interventions are capable of building such a self of creating a democratically self-governing entity let me put the point now positively instead of negatively and connected with a broader philosophical theme if you agree with me that the Canadian invasion would be wrong I suspect that the reason is not only a doubt whether American politics can be democratized with a little help from a friend it’s because there is value in Americans making their politics on their own independently of how well those politics meet the standards of democracy this is the proper analogy to the individual case recognizing the value of another nations autonomy with little or no regard for how and perfectly that autonomy is realized such autonomy is in a word to be respected rather than managed through a policy of

forbearance rather than intervention intervention is in negation not a promotion of autonomy a commitment to autonomy is fundamental to the liberal tradition to be sure but the demand for authenticity and self command is not only a liberal value even if it is quintessentially modern indeed it as many non-liberal forms when it is regarded as a collective rather than an individual form of self-realization as in non Democratic revolutions the value is that of a made rather than a found existence the value named by Ralph Waldo Emerson of taking oneself as one’s portion we respect that value domestically through building the institutions of republican and democratic governance we respected internationally not principally by building international versions of these same institutions but by restraining our actions out of respect for that value in other places let me go step deeper I think the temptations towards democratic holy wars arises not just from a misprision of the value of autonomy but from a misunderstanding of the value of democracy itself or from a mistaken perspective of its value if you prefer the trouble comes from a perspective on democracy that focuses too intently on democracy as a set of institutions for distributing political decision-making on the basis of a universal franchise such a conception of democracy while naturally rooted in the self understanding and perhaps self misunderstanding of developed western states provides too strong a justification for intervention and makes it too hard to miss the considerations on the other side I call the offending conception a teelak conception of democracy democracy as a set of political institutions it is teelak because the institutional arrangements represent a gold or end state one that can be designed and implemented from within or without I want to contrast this institutional conception with what I call an agenta conception the agenda core active conception of democracy looks to the form of elective agency exercised in a democracy not to the particular institutional form of its exercise on the agenda conception of democracy democratic agency can be honored perhaps fostered but it cannot be designed or promoted or important designed or imported it is a flower that must row from its own soil let me try to be more specific the Tila conception of democracy at its core reflects an instinct an instinct for two principles one substantive and the other procedural the substantive principle is a commitment to the moral equality of all persons to the idea that any right to exercise power over another must be earned in a currency that speaks to the interest of the person being ruled democracy shares this commitment with its close cousin liberalism the procedural principle insists that the substantive commitment to equality be realized through forms of interaction and mutual justification that equality be supported by and mirrored in the ways in which basic decisions of the political community are framed these principles can be given further specification in relation to kinds of community and decision they’re meant to define a small community whose interests enter on common questions of resource use in planning such as the use of grazing fields tithes and taxes how much grain to store against a long winter or bad harvest etc well if it lives democratically accord all households a voice and common discussion it may adopt a decision rule of consensus supermajority or majority any of which can claim to give equal weighting to individual citizen views respectively in terms of their objections or preferences a larger community by contrast might try to realize its principles through representative councils formalized discussions such as public notice and comment rules duties of justification and rights of Appeal and perhaps a broader franchise if broader interests in power being exercised in the international arena the teeluk Democratic perspective is more a matter of metaphor and insistence that decisions reflect welfare interests more than balances of power that decisions affecting the international community be made in public fora rather than through secret channels is when we add what is now called The Cosmopolitan perspective to the democratic one that we arrived at the potent form for intervention the cosmopolitan perspective rejects the normative significance of national boundaries release their significance in the first instance as opposed to the utility in essentially dividing administrative zones descended from Cicero’s insistence on our common humanity cosmopolitanism has known principally to traditions revolutionary socialism which saw the underlying class interest of the proletariat is transcending national identities themselves largely products of capitalist and imperialist projects and what might be called evangelical liberalism or the doctrines that the benefits of the liberal democratic state represent not just in equilibrium among competing social groups and forces but the only form of government true to the instincts of autonomy in rational self

direction link the substantive value of universal and equal moral worth to focus on democratic institutions and you have the recipe for what has been called muscular liberalism as I think a term champion by another Canadian Michael Ignatieff I may have repudiated the term but I think he’s when you’re coined it the perversity of the position is that while it is grounded in respect for all it presupposes an essentially clinical and diagnostic perspective on the part of the intervening state analogous to the perspective of the addicts family it’s the perspective of one who looks across a sea of suffering humanity burdened by non democratic structures and asks what can we do to free these selves from their shackles I realized that my tone here may sound more mocking than I want there are real values the teelak democrat honors and the cosmopolitan commitment to universal justice is in most of its instances anything but condescending it valuably insists on treating as morally arbitrary luck or worse the state of affairs in which resources and development opportunities are distributed so in equally across the globe nor do I wish to deny the capacities of any political community to live in democratic institutions anything to the contrary is bigotry but the question is how do we regard those peoples in states living undemocratically for now what value can we see in their arrangements more particularly can we see their demo must we see their democracy deficits as can ditions that we might remedy John Stuart Mill provides a guide to how we might otherwise understand democracy democracy on Mills view is the way individuals join with others to pursue common projects most notably the common project of creating political institutions in his famous essay defending England sometimes honored policy of non-intervention mill says quote the only test possessing any real value of a people’s having become fit for popular institutions is that they or a sufficient portion of them to prevail in the contest are willing to brave labour and danger for their Liberator point is partly epistemic of course that the social capital necessary to sustain democratic institutions has to be in place already realized by a population before those institutions can succeed and that the best test of its existence is whether a people is already engaged in a struggle for democratic liberation on this account motivation sufficient to sustain a popular struggle are necessary if not sufficient to sustain redistributive institutions as well since both involve the emergence of a collective me a view of the self is wrapped up in its collective projects with others the point is strong I think but not extreme well it would be an exaggeration to say that the established democracies have come about exclusively through mass movements given the role of incremental change still revolutionary mobilization has played a role in almost all cases at least in creating sometimes latent tradition of democratic practice later restored in this way democracy can be as much a limiting notion for political action as an enabling one for calls up the success of the democratic project of forming the general will not merely in the values that explain why the general will is the appropriate resolution to the problem of diverse but equally valuable individual interests democracy from this perspective from Mills perspective is an achievement one always on the brink of unraveling to be sure and thus one to be defended where it exists we need not grant the existence of a non-democratic value of sovereignty to see that the mission of democratic states in the world is limited as a matter of permission and duty to rectification of grave set of human wrongs instead from the perspective of active democracy what matters about democracy is not just the equal weighting of interests nor the equal weighting of chances to affect common decisions to be sure both of these factors are important and explain the centrality of the majoritarian vote within democratic theory that’s the most prospectus way of representing the commitment to a principle of equal effect but those aspects of democracy represent it’s passive aspect the way in which it functions as a managerial mechanism for reconciling different interests there is thus essentially political interpretations of Bentham ight utilitarianism and rest on the same principle of negative responsibility is unrestrained consequentialism more generally let me abdera comment about Michael Walzer who’s offered in several writings and influential Restatement of Mills argument for non-intervention according to Walter what is valuable in a state even an authoritarian one is a culture that is expressed organically through the integration of political institutions with cultural values and practices except in what I’ve called the extreme r2p cases Walter argues that respect for the value of culture and tells a politics of forbearance a

politics grounded both in legitimate concerns about Outsiders capacity to ascertain the fit between a community’s culture and its institutions and in a herder like respect for the many varieties of non-liberal cultures where there is a political expression of authentic culture or when we Outsiders must operate with such a presumption then we must honor the culture by declining to intervene myself I think Walters prescription is correct those diagnosis is mistaken I do not want to dispute whether cultures as such have intrinsic value such a question seems hopelessly crude given the difficulties and individuating and characterizing anything that might be called a unified culture in anything but a caricature of national complexity more to the point I think that if cultures have some common value it is because their expressions of collective activity of the messy web of micro bargains social economic and political through which we as individuals navigate a dangerous world on the rafts we make together like the joke about the dog playing the piano the Wonder is that we can do the thing at all not that we do it especially well we be not be Hobbes ians to regard relatively peaceable collective life as a thing of wonder the value of self-determination lies in that capacity and this is what mill sees and Walter misses once we understand value as residing an agency in collective agency we can see why the emergence of democracy is something that structurally must be developed from the inside out not the outside in why the fantasy of importing governance in a box as the arguments for the American surge in Afghanistan had it are not only pragmatic but also normative delusions the development of a community towards democratic institutions is a project of self Constitution is an unending process of transforming the micro-level balances of power and privilege Authority and obedience that characterized social life into something approximating the teelak ideal of course the pace and ease of that transformation depends on the circumstances in which it occurs and such transformations and negotiations are always easier in circumstances a relative wealth rather than scarcity various forms of international aid can ease the conditions of scarcity and enable the conditions of politics they can therefore be a permissible and legitimate way of honoring collective agency but the transformation itself the constitution of an ever more Universal we as a matter of a process through which individuals realize how to find themselves find in themselves a collective voice and perspective to act through what Rousseau called the moi kuma comal it is not a process that can be managed from without I do not mean to sentimentalize the process of democratic self Constitution violence whether of intervenors or of a demotic people will often be part of this process but the understanding of this violence and its legitimacy is different on the t look perspective violence is justified wherever and whenever it leads to better consequences measured by democratic metric if human welfare is what ultimately matters least within a secular political theory then violence will be justified whenever it maximizes well her on the agenting theory of democracy by contrast violence is justified when it is essential to the formation of a collective democratic agent a people defining a politics in their own name its value is not absolute not agent neutral but rather extends only so far as the democratic agency itself and of the forms of well-being that such agency can produce this is a significant value and it can justify a broader range of self-defensive rights than a purely moralized theory of war can do of the sort developed I think you heard last year by Jeff McMahon moralized theories of war rest on theories of individual interests as well in their danto logical forms as individual measures of culpability and liability by contrast the agenting value locates the agenting view locates value at the level of the active community as well as at the level of the individuals the political community formed by that agency has moral standing in its own right a standing that generates the right of communal not merely individual self defense such a value is not absolute even in cases of genuine threat to the community’s continued political existence but as with proto Democratic revolutions the value of political community can justify use of force going beyond individual non political interests the truly difficult cases for the image ntek view as i said earlier will lie in cases at the r2p borderlines exercises of violence by authoritarian states that are serious and constitute genuine crimes against humanity but do not rise to the level of mass genocide this was arguably the case in the Libya and it is now arguably the case as the world watches the Syrian President shall

civilians and homes imagine a group of people in the state engaged in some form of rebellion seeking a democratic state in the minimal sense of demanding a leader whose authority stems from mass consent the demand itself for democracy is standing in the international system for represents a value that many that many nations themselves realize and accordingly respect but if the rebels have not yet put in place anything that reflects this ideal that realizes it the claim is weak it is weak partly on epistemic grounds for we are not in a position to know whether social conditions are sufficiently developed to sustain democratic institutions over the authoritarian competitors that will with great ruthlessness be pursued in the power vacuum to that will ensue but is weak also in metaphysical grounds because the animating value remains hollow until actually practiced and so it offers little counter balance against the values that genuinely opposed it including the values of life stability and the benign traditions that even troubled nations and peoples have traditions that may suffer or disappear in the wake of foreign influence in the case of Libya the case for pro-democratic intervention was weak the aspiration towards democracy surely existed and the Libyan opposition included expatriates with experience and functioning democracies but the militia itself showed no Democratic character beyond its haphazard organization nor were there anything like democratic institutions in place from which the rebellion could gather force I do not wish to make the NATO decision to intervene to seem easier than it was but it was reasonably evident at the time and all the more so now that any intervention that went beyond the r2p mandate would be built mainly on the sands of wishful thinking by Western partners the problem of wishful thinking by intervenors including most terribly the ease with which intervening nations are prey to local hustlers who know how to talk the talk of democracy correspondingly represents one of the greatest threats to national interests taking this risk seriously in a case like Libya means acknowledging an awkward logical space Gaddafi’s regime had forfeited any claim of self-defense through its own actions the Western intervention beyond the RTP boundaries was also illegitimate perhaps no group in Libya save Gaddafi and his apparatus was willing or in a position to object to that intervention itself a consequence of Gaddafi’s destruction of a civic sphere it still does not follow I think that the intervention was right but only that it faced no one with appropriate standing to object now i’m only a mildly informed observer of the syrian scene and i’m hesitant to abuse this platform to offer my amateurish views but the argument I’ve sketched here according to the argument of sketched here I think the threshold for armed intervention or for arming the insurrection Ares in Syria has not yet been made apart from the calculus of practical interests which counsels caution in any event respect for the process of democratic transfer mesh transformation means letting the process of internal civil conflict work its way on its own now there as much the international community can do of the naming and shaming variety and though this is something we might take up in discussion economic sanctions targeted the regime seemed to me permissible as well a matter of outside states deciding how to conduct their own relations what their trade policy should be but crossing the threshold of war by blockade no-fly zone or troops on the ground would represent to direct an attempt to remake a polity from within that is the hard line I would draw so to the extent democracy invites outside participation does so in a limited way as a relation between democratic people’s rather between people’s already active in democratic politics I recognize the apparent paradox of this view that the democracies most worth supporting are the ones least in need of support a specific form of the general rule that nothing succeeds like success the arming of an incipient pro-democratic rebellion is correspondingly among the most troubling forms of intervention because it involves the expansion of violent conflict with people who have not yet through collective politics unified themselves in the only way they can legitimate that violence I’ve thus far been discussing how gential how the agenting democratic perspective shapes the principled question whether to intervene I want to conclude by noting that respecting democracy raises issues not just about whether intervention is permissible with respect to the targeted state but whether it is permissible for the intervenor as well the democratic state must justify the intervention to its own citizenry and to the institutions of global governance to which it in principle is committed this can raise an acute problem for genuinely democratic processes are inherently slow while humanitarian emergencies quickly erupt as with Libya fluid events and stalemated political systems combined poorly giving a motivation for highly

non democratic action by executives and setting a precedent for permanent extension of more making powers tension between the needs for action and deliberation might be thought reduced for RTP interventions because such interventions might be thought to have smaller scope in practice of course even limited humanitarian interventions can give rise to enduring commitments thus even if there has been formal legitimation of the intervention by a state’s own democratic politics the democratic state can find itself subject to fading public interest the fading of interest or replacement by other popular causes makes a correspondingly hard for Democratic commanders to plant operations that extend into the indefinite future for popular sentiment changes quickly the initial investment in the humanitarian effort may well turn out to be wasted lives and treasure there’s a related problem of exit States launching attacks may be brought in by the best of motives preventing imminent loss of life to civilians but the conditions that make for example the risk of massacre acute are precisely the circumstances that make it a chronic risk as well the circumstances of governmental failure this means that local institutions will almost never be in place after the imminent massacre is averted unless and until the institutions of the target state made a rough standard democratic legitimacy the intervention will be deemed incomplete modus vivendi is not enough those democratic states may find themselves whipsawed between popular pressure to cut short interventions and opposing normative pressures teeluk pressures towards providing better and more robust outcomes for the citizens of the targeted state the crucial question of what then what policies or engagements follow up on the initial military adventure resonates in political morality as much as in political tactics battle fatigue may lead to democracy to declare an intervention finished so long as the civil war is not boiling hot as in Iraq or Afghanistan I’ll be at war is not considered humanitarian interventions that though fought with democracy exporting ambitions but it may not consider that an acceptable outcome unless some proto Democratic tutions are also put into place we’re too early in the modern history of intervention to know where these pressures will stabilize I do not doubt that political choices whether to use violence or driven more by prior outcomes than by philosophical reflection and change but even if changes of concepts are shaped by rather than our shapers of the arc of history they play an undeniable role in our self understanding and in the forms of justification we have to offer i’ve argued that the Tila conception of democracy has lowered the threshold of justification to sharply replacing the sovereign presumption of non-interference with a pragmatic calculus of beneficence liberating democracy from this conception and instead making central the value of political agency may help to move patterns of thought and decision back towards the presumption of non-interference it’s this fundamentally imminent understanding of democracy and i think is our best defense against the threat of democratic holy wars thank you very much well thank you very much Chris we have sometimes some type of question there any burning questions that you would like to ask at this point we’re not burning or not burning of course yes I just make sure you take the microphone before you ask your question I have many questions all save some for tomorrow but one of the things that I was thinking about when you’re talking I agreed with you in many respects and some of the concerns that you raise our concerns that I’ve had where people talk about democracy as a way of justifying going to war and that’s worried me but on the other hand when we talk about valuing political agency and we see maybe we have the society maybe we’re all as a sense of a decent society one where you know we don’t reach these extreme r2p cases where you’re talking about but there are still severe concerns about agency inequality mm-hmm I certainly wouldn’t want to argue that going in and interfering intervening militarily would be the way to go but does your argument in any way speak against any kind of act livity to promote you talked at one point about aiding in a way you’re still pushing these kinds of democratic values even to the point of criticizing or are we forced to respect and tolerate or what can we do to sort of yeah sorry that was at part I had I haven’t a longer version of this but not in in in the talk so I have a there was a line I mentioned which is the the general line I take which is that transparent and non-coercive aid is possible I think there’s a so I mean said the middle stretch i’m interested in is everything from what roles considers decent societies to what he considers burden

societies but not the societies sort of presently concerned with massacre and the the i think the the forms of intervention that are permissible or the are basically the forms of ordinary exchange the forms of the forms of trade exchange and so forth and i think also you know in foreign aid so you know i do think that creating the what i called creating the conditions for politics is a permissible intervention creating the resources through which people can constitute itself the the would seem to me a more difficult question is direct intervention interventions into politics i will take it for granted that covert interventions in politics which you know certainly has a long history of the CIA involvement in the reconstruction of civil democracies in Western Europe for example may have positive effects they may the positive effects may outweigh the negative effects but I take it for granted that that covert aid to political parties in foreign countries is illegitimate that’s why its covert i mean it’s its exposure would would be seen as fundamental as fundamentally a legitimate now what about overt forms of political a could a could an overt gift be made to a pro democratic party that’s on the borderline for me of direct you know attempts to manage a polity and my instinct is that that that would be impermissible I don’t but it’s enough on the borderline of the of the line I’m trying to draw between honoring an attempt of a state to stand on its own decree to constitute itself and trying to manage the process that I’m unsure what to say I don’t know if you’ve got a view about that I mean I was trying I was thinking you know if Canada were to buy political advertising the United States just supports a single-payer healthcare that would seem to me inappropriate and we have obviously some constitutional all right now on the question of foreign foreign political contributions to elections but that it that does seem to me to cross a cross the threshold of interference with kind of autonomous politics so it’s really more this managing from a fact that you talked about in interfering not naming and shaming yeah over discourse but but you know political targeted political advertising or even over at aid to political party seems to me to cross the threshold I’m sorry what were you about to say um thank you that was a fascinating presentation my question I guess I have numerous questions one that’s sociological and the one that I want to ask right now is historical I I guess in terms of how you conceptualize democracies and the way you’ve laid out the framework I do agree in terms of where you you’ve exited however I want to know your conceptualization what in terms of how you conceptualize the problem whether you’ve taken into account the formation of these nation states and I guess I you know going back to the work of de vitoria country angee who’s you know chronicled de vitoria influence on the creation of sovereignty itself in the during the Americas or the colonization of the Americas how I guess the understanding of sovereignty itself was forged as a way to control the colonial population right and so you you fast forward to now or to the mandate system and if you take Syria for example it’s a perfect it came out of the mandate system where if the colonial powers drew the lines of what Syria is so I’m just thinking how I’m wondering how would you I guess situate the responsibility of the the creators of this regime whatever we have right now in this in this analysis because the way it’s set up is that you know we have nation-states but the nation states did not come out of nowhere they came out of a colonial enterprise that was meant to subjugate darker nations versus you know Western nations right so in that context how would you formulate the right well that’s that’s why I’m trying to avoid a way of privilege in anything like nation state boundaries or privilege so we can we can see state boundaries and the government’s that happen to control those the territories within those boundaries has as an artifice and we have to see them as an artifice and something that represents a international calculus of interests I think there’s a different mistake that’s made by Walter where the attempt is to rehabilitate the concept of a people rather to and have that serve the role of the state because people’s are also they’re not only are constructs but there they don’t coincide with state boundaries very well either so I’m so my project is trying to find and this is a piece of trying to find a

more fluid conception of what it is that we want to respect and the idea of ensemble of people working together in a particularly dense way that doing it the way that I’m called doing politics which may be in revolutionary politics may mean plotting for revolution but it’s a contingent I mean it’s contingent who is in that they’re not necessarily linked by language by culture by tradition but it’s whatever group that it is that is engaged in that sort of common work that has the the moral standing that’s what I’m claiming so it’s an attempt to agree that there’s that you know looking at the history of sovereignty doctrine as well as looking at how you know how it has usually operated as a as a way to mask domestic repression means that that the the apparatus of sovereignty itself is something we need to to throw away and I think we can’t simply say argument is we can’t simply replace that with the concept of the people understood as a as a cultural culturally defined entity we need inside and said some instead something more fluid but it that fluidity is consistent with its being a reality that people can organize together ahead of time and place him and create create a common politics thanks that was very interesting and i have several question i’ll try to limit myself to one or maybe two so the so you gave the analogy of the drug addict that and i thought that perhaps in this context of a better analogy is someone who’s a young boy or young girl and so and in that context we’re much more willing to acknowledge the the not just the permissibility but of the necessity of education and and mill actually has in his Liberty he makes the distinction between the permissibility of paternalism in the context of children and so I thought that perhaps uh in this context perhaps if you may want to say that that the permissibility of kind of kick-starting democracy is because either it will be impossible to generate otherwise or if not impossible if you look at the history of of now solidly democratic nations all of them have gone through a or no I don’t I don’t know if all of them but many of them have gone through it a disastrous period so if you look at the u.s Civil War is part of the story of democratization in Germany Nazi Germany is part of that story in France it’s the revolution so the question is perhaps um it’s worth helping the child so that he doesn’t have to go through out the lessons so that or through an easier adolescence if and and and in that context perhaps perhaps kind of moving away from the analogy to state that perhaps some kind of aid may help to get us there that will be otherwise impossible even even if sorry if even if the aim is is for the person to or the state to get there on its own you need some kind of assistance yeah I Twilight I’d with that as the analogy and I rejected it for a couple of reasons one is that it presupposes a kind of natural teleology they don’t think is therefore states and people that children left on their own they go through their period of savagery but they eventually become adults and presumably they become functioning adults that there’s no clear teleology to national politics that’s one the second is again the perspective is I wanted an analogy in which we may be that the drug addict analogy is not the good one or this or the functioning addict one is not it’s not the best one but i wanted one in which we could acknowledge that kind of the legitimacy of the views of the addict of saying you know it’s my problem it’s for me to figure out how i’m going to solve this and I the often as my children have not quite hit adolescence although my son certainly thinks he has but you know the attitude of a parent at that point is is much more paternalistic if you want you allow your children to make their mistakes but it’s because on your view that’s the best way for them to learn how to live full lives but that’s not that’s different from a respect for their right to make their own mistakes it’s the right is purely instrumental we allow them that space I mean no doubt at a certain period this changes and you see the child is having a right i think but i think the the difficult moment for parenting is with older children adult children who are making their own mistakes and it’s not necessarily in their own interests in any long-term sense but you nonetheless have to stand back that might be something more like the appropriate analogy but the you know

then in general the literal paternalism of the analogy is what troubles me also is a way of try map that on to trying to map that on to anything that looks like the right way to think about international affairs because of course that analogy has held it is the governing analogy for colonialism for you know for protectorates and so that was why I was leery of moving that in that direction I don’t think the growing pains can be avoided I mean I think that they can be you know as I suggest a very briefly in the talk I think if the international community can try to avoid the problems of resource scarcity certain kinds of conflicts can be can be minimized that seems to be consistent with the role of outside states so but yeah and it does seem to me in general that the worst sort of thing the international community can do is ship extra guns into one party in a conflict that seems highly unlikely to lead to a better outcome but the but beyond that I don’t see any way to for help countries past there they’re angry adolescents oh yeah there’s a mic behind you thanks very much my question is if you recognize the artifice of national borders and sovereignty why is your moral argument addressed to States and would the same moral considerations apply to the oil companies operating in Syria or two individuals for instance Syrian expatriates the Syrian diaspora or non-syrian suit sold yes excellent a great question the it was addressed to States because I guess I was thinking of it from the perspective of what what a state’s foreign policy ought to be i took this up in the in the in the tradition which rolls writes a lot of people’s which is what should the foreign policy of a democratic democratic polity be but I think the I think the question for individuals is basically that I mean is is basically the same there are some different practical issues but let’s separate two groups one hour syrian expatriates who or Dysport Syrians who or this is certainly true Libya or Tunisia who are in fact are exiles they were Democratic activists who wish to return it seems to me that they are part of that process of self Constitution that’s the self has scattered its pieces but is reconstituting that people who are committed to Syrian future from the inside have a you know perhaps even a duty to return to contribute to the the forming of the forming of that of that people of that act of political community oil companies well with except we’ll get to oil comes in a second take another group of individuals sort of Cosmopolitan do-gooders who want to you know channel money towards pro-democracy groups the i mean i think that i think the hardline i want to draw for state intervention applies also to individuals that if that too that it’s a form of benign or benignly meant but nonetheless wrongful inter meddling that it’s you know that they can contribute to the overt forms of support to aid programs to naming and shaming and so on that role of you know say the NGO community i think is is extremely important but you know to volunteer for duty as a rebel or to provide covert aid i think crosses the same lines that the state support would the oil companies i think should refrain from trying to influence politics in this way that you know to say that is sound hopelessly naive but I mean that you know to the extent I mean multinational oil companies have local interests and those local interests it’s appropriate for those local business interests as it’s appropriate for any political interest in Syria to try to have the Syria they want but for the multinational to throw it try to throw its weight around to foment a revolution or create a state seems to be a you know clear case of of wrongful intervention any further questions yes one more can you pass the microphone awesome it won’t be long just on what you just mentioned

so you draw the line with the naming and shaming or between violent intervention so he can you not hear me yeah okay but i was wondering on what your take would be on things sort of like with in terms of like rewriting the Constitution for different countries and direct political help from other bodies so for instance in Afghanistan like there were US officials that were helping write the Constitution but when they questioned like local citizens they had no idea what the questions meant or didn’t understand them yet now they have a constitution that they say applies to everyone so things like that where would you draw the line on so I mean they’re too two questions one is you know who’s who’s brought them in is that are they being brought in as part of the part of the interventionist project it was a law school classmate of mine who tried to draft an Iraqi Constitution and you know was I mean that the if the intervention was wrongful then helping out in the intervention is wrongful as well if you’re invited in by a state that’s there I mean they’re never cure cases in reality there always is always messy hybrids but if if somebody if an outside group is invited in for its constitutional expertise then I don’t see anything wrong with offering those services but I think there’s a real danger in Outsiders sort of even again well meant Outsiders capturing capturing a process that needs I think to emerge from the inside and you know I think we I don’t know what the success rate is of the Constitution’s in Eastern Europe they were all drafted in the 90s but you know i mean i remember various law firms in you know in Washington being hired to go draft constitutions for Kazakhstan and wherever and I would you know I would doubt that that’s the case more of pragmatics than principle I would doubt that an outside imported Constitution is going to is going to be legitimate and function well if maybe somebody in this room knows more about the case than I do pit these cases okay so if there are no further question I’d ask you to join me in thanking professor good goods for a very thought provoking lecture thank you very much thank you thank you very much