inviolable status alters the shape of the restrictions and their exceptions as they arise solely out of the bargainers’ self-interest-maximizing motive.
To say that my bargainers “wish to formulate a set of rules that gives proper expression to the inviolable status they bear as persons” requires a little bit more explanation. To see what exactly is meant by this claim, let us examine in closer detail the notion of inviolability and see what would be involved in adopting a set of rules that gives proper expression to it. There are two main ideas that need attention in my stipulation that my bargainers desire the system of morality they adopt to respect their inviolable status as persons: first, the conception of 'inviolability,’ and second, the notion of an ethical system's 'respecting' or 'giving proper expression to' this inviolable status. A. Inviolability
Much has been made, in the philosophical discussion of recent years, of the ideas that persons are in some sense 'inviolable' and that it is a desired feature of moral systems that they 'respect' or 'give expression to' this inviolability.19 It is generally thought that the intuitions driving this discussion (and, presumably, my bargainers) are non- consequentialist in nature. Nevertheless, some consequentialists have argued that these intuitions regarding the sanctity of the individual and the inherent evil of violating persons can be incorporated into a pluralistic theory of the good.20 As such, consequentialist moralities might be able to incorporate these intuitions into their systems by assigning great negative weight to such violations and sanctioning actions or policies that seek to minimize such transgressions. It is important to see that such a point of view does not adequately capture the insight driving the discussion conducted by Kamm, Nagel, and Quinn, nor does it fully reflect the intuitions my bargainers seek to see recognized. This is especially important for our purposes, as we are committed to demonstrating that our contractarian account leads not to consequentialism, but to genuine, deontological constraints. If such a concern on the part of the bargainers might be shown just as easily to lead to a consequentialist as to a non-consequentialist morality, then our hope of grounding a moderate morality in the social-contract setting will fail.
19 20 See, for example, Quinn (1989), Kamm (1992) and Nagel (1995). See, for example, Amartya Sen, “Rights and Agency,” Philosophy and Public Affairs 11 (1982), pp. 3- 39.