Theories constitute the technology of academia. They give us eggheads the tools we need to get our work done, just as computers serve programmers and DNA sequencing serves bioengineers. I trust that TLF’s readers won’t think me too far off-topic, then, if I cite a new approach to consent theory, something that should interest anyone who cares about the fundamental reasons for valuing of liberty. Here’s a snapshot of the theory:
To get the full story, please see that figure’s source: Graduated Consent Theory, Explained and Applied, Chapman University School of Law, Legal Studies Research Paper Series, Paper No. 09-13 (March 2009) [PDF]. The paper reviews the importance of consent in legal, moral, and economic reasoning, and develops a model of the relationship between consent and justification. It concludes by applying that model to a number of practical problems. Most notably, in contrast to both originalism and “living constitutionism,” the paper promotes interpreting the Constitution according to the plain, present, public meaning of its text and resolving ambiguities in favor of individual liberty.