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Single Idea 21080

[catalogued under 25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 6. Liberalism]

Full Idea

Every action which by itself or by its maxim enables the freedom of each individual's will to co-exist with the freedom of everyone else in accordance with a universal law is right.

Gist of Idea

Actions are right if the maxim respects universal mutual freedoms

Source

Immanuel Kant (Metaphysics of Morals I: Doctrine of Right [1797], Intro C)

A Reaction

This idea shows the moral basis for Kant's liberalism in politics. If all individuals acted without contact or reference to other individuals (a race of hermits) then that would appear to be optimum moral right, by this standard.

Book Reference

Kant,Immanuel: 'Political Writings', ed/tr. Reiss,Hans [CUP 1996], p.133