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Modern Social Science Concepts, Proportionate Reciprocity, Modesty, and Democracy

Soldatos, Gerasimos T. (2014): Modern Social Science Concepts, Proportionate Reciprocity, Modesty, and Democracy.

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Aristotle’s economics of exchange: (a) Ideally, reciprocal justice in bilateral bargaining to minimize expenditure given utility levels results in Pareto-efficient, envy-free, equitable outcomes. (b) Practically, bargaining under the threat or actual recontracting may act as a surrogate of reciprocal justice, leading to an N-person (N-dimensional) contract topology. (c) But, recontracting is subject to practical limitations too, in which case near-reciprocal justice/general equilibrium outcomes may be fostered if, as a surrogate of recontracting, modesty in interaction is exhibited in an evolutionarily-stable-strategy fashion. (d) That is, incomplete recontracting amounts to asymmetric agent-type information, which in turn lays the ground for injustices; the same lack of information prevents rectificatory justice from being efficient and hence, modesty can be efficient only if it operates as a social norm and hence, only in a modest polity, which can be no other than democracy. The modern-day terminology used in connection with Aristotle sounds bizarre, but by this is meant that his thinking and answers on issues preoccupying social science for centuries, do not differ much from modern-day approaches to the same issues.

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