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Single Idea 19926

[catalogued under 25. Society / C. Social Justice / 4. Legal Rights / a. Basis of rights]

Full Idea

No offence can be committed against subjects by sovereigns, since they are of right permitted to do all things., and therefore offences occur only between private persons obliged by law not to harm one another.

Gist of Idea

The sovereignty has absolute power over citizens


Baruch de Spinoza (Tractatus Theologico-Politicus [1670], 16.14)

A Reaction

This slightly alarming remark is the consequence of Spinoza's denial of natural rights. Nowadays we have international law to appeal to. Locke thinks revolution could be justified, but this implies the Spinoza does not?

Book Reference

Spinoza,Benedict de: 'Theological-Political Treatise', ed/tr. Israel,Jonathan [CUP 2007], p.203

Related Idea

Idea 19916 The order of nature does not prohibit anything, and allows whatever appetite produces [Spinoza]