Calibration dilemmas in the ethics of distribution

Jacob M. Nebel, H. Orri Stefánsson
2022 Economics and Philosophy  
This paper presents a new kind of problem in the ethics of distribution. The problem takes the form of several 'calibration dilemmas', in which intuitively reasonable aversion to small-stakes inequalities requires leading theories of distribution to recommend intuitively unreasonable aversion to large-stakes inequalities. We first lay out a series of such dilemmas for prioritarian theories. We then consider a widely endorsed family of egalitarian views and show that they are subject to even
more » ... forceful calibration dilemmas than prioritarian theories. Finally, we show that our results challenge common utilitarian accounts of the badness of inequalities in resources.
doi:10.1017/s0266267121000298 fatcat:6rcsrmxrkvez5jfurdhd6g3zqu