The Case Law of the European Court of Justice

November 7, 2009

Many of the socio-economic rights incorporated into the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (EU) have already been given recognition by the European Court of Justice (ECJ). In relation to the workings of the single market, throughout the history of the European Community (EC), it was not the case that its negative aspects […]

The EU’s External Relations Policy and Human Rights

October 25, 2009

Human rights are an important element in the external relations of the EU. They have become more significant after the Treaty of Maastricht which contains specific provisions dealing with human rights in the EU’s external relations. Over the years, the EU has pursued numerous actions and policies meant to protect and promote human rights in […]

Socio-economic Rights and the Single Market

October 18, 2009

There are two differing perspectives regarding European integration in the context of social and economic rights. On one hand, some view it simply as a triumph of economic freedom and competition. “In this light, the Treaty of Rome is conceived as an economic neo-liberal constitution whose aim is to protect market freedom from public power […]

Are History and Geography the Only Factors that Determine a Country’s Laws?

October 11, 2009

The statement that history and geography are the sole determinants of a country’s laws on its first reading already reveals an inherent flaw, namely its exclusive nature. While the determining force of the factors of geography and history is self-evident and will not be negated in this essay, it will be shown that they cannot […]

Human Rights and Cultural Relativism

October 7, 2009

The notion of the dialogical character of human identity as developed by the Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor in his Ethics of Authenticity gives rise to a need for further discussion, this time at the level of the identity of cultures. A requirement for proper authenticity is that a person is a part of a society […]

Is There Morality in War?

October 4, 2009

In attempting to answer the question whether all means are legitimate in the conduct of war and whether in war there is morality, we will look at two opposing viewpoints, namely the just war theory and pacifism. However, in order to be able to take the position of one of the two viewpoints, we have […]

Is Democracy a Process or a Result?

October 2, 2009

By the very nature of human association and co-existence there arises the requirement for a way of reaching decisions that would define the norms and rules of that co-existence. “To live together in an association, then, people need a process for arriving at governmental decisions: a political process.”[1] The nature of that process and its […]

Community Charter of Fundamental Social Rights of Workers

September 26, 2009

Until the 1980s, the focus of the EC regarding human rights primarily rested on civil and political rights, as in the overriding international context. However, the focus had shifted in the 1980s more towards the social dimension, which “was high on the European Council’s agenda at that time, as demonstrated by the declarations at the […]

Introduction to the European Social Charter

September 19, 2009

Even though economic and social rights were present in the constitutions of France, Germany and Italy after the Second World War, it was decided not to include them in the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR). This decision was defended by one of the key drafters, Pierre-Henri Teitgen, on […]