Balancing Mutualism with Legalism

loading Ooi Kee Beng.

THE NOTION OF “Rights” is as close to the essence of politics as one can come in a word. This is because “Rights”, like “Respect”, are earned, not granted. The loser in a political struggle may maintain the illusion that he is granting rights to the winning side. He is forced to give way; he was not being generous in giving way. “Rights” thus stem from agreements between parties forced to the negotiating table, and granted at said table – by violence or threat of violence. But like Carl von Clausewitz, the German warfare analyst, famously claimed, “War is a mere continuation of policy ...

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