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Old 08-23-2019, 06:21 PM
k9bfriender is offline
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 11,453
Originally Posted by Max S. View Post
I think we could at least fit this in my analogy by replacing "neighbor" with "the home repair contractor".

The question as I see it, is not a matter of direct harms. Obviously,if you, through intent or neglect, but certainly as your fault, cause me harm, then it is your personal responsibility to make me whole. Agreed?

In Shodan's car example, the rich neighbor had nothing to do with the theft or damage, and so has no reason to have any responsibility, to this, I think we should also all agree.

So the question is really where between those extremes does your culpability for the harms endured by another end, how liable are you for those harms, and what is your responsibility for making them whole?

If someone steals a car and gives it to me, then I obviously have to make the owner as whole as I can by giving it back, and if I made any damages to it during my possession, then I should have to pay for those, though the original thief would be held much more responsible.

If someone steals a car and gives me a ride to work, then I have benefited from the harm done to the original owner, even if I have not added to it personally in a meaningful quantity. This is the more nebulous area as to what my liability could be, and what sort of recompense the owner could demand from me.

And that final scenario is where I think we are as a society. We benefit from the way that society is set up, and yet, there are those who are harmed by the way that society is set up. So, what do we owe to those who are harmed by the mechanism that benefits us, even if we personally do not add any sort of meaningful harm to them?

I feel that the more benefit that you get from society, the more you should give back, both because you can, and because your benefit comes from the harm of others, and the greater the benefit that you receive, the more that you personally add to the harm of others stops being meaningless.