Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Isn't it ironic...

...that in the 18th century it was thought that emphasizing economics in international relations would be a good thing because "interests" were more rational than "passions" and so this would reduce the risk of war (la doux commerce), yet today we sneer at people who think in terms of interests because really, we should be concerned about morality. This is especially striking when thinking about humanitarian intervention. People complain that states act only in their own interests and that we should care about these other countries, but isn't this, perhaps, better than them being capricious and responding to random moral messages? Perhaps realism has something going for it?

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