Vernon Smith Prize 2017: Winners announced

Vernon Smith Prize 2016 Call for Papers
Does Tolerance become a crime when applied to evil? Vernon Smith Prize 2017.

Vernon Smith Prize 2017
Winners announced

The 10th International Vernon Smith Prize for the Advancement of Austrian Economics was an essay competition sponsored and organized by ECAEF European Center of Austrian Economics Foundation, Vaduz (Principality of Liechtenstein). This years’ topic: Does Tolerance become a Crime when applied to Evil? The winners are:

1: Mattias Oppold (Germany)

PhD Student of Economics, at TU Kaiserslautern

|- First Prize EUR 4,000 -|

2: Marcos Falcone (Argentina)

Fullbright Student at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

|- Second Prize EUR 3,000 -|

3: Richard Mason (UK)

Student at Maastricht University Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

|- Third Prize EUR 2,000 -|

Does Tolerance become a Crime when applied to Evil? Advanced by the ‘ends-independent’ market process, free pluralistic societies developed without a shared hierarchy of particular ends. Once we agree on the rules, we need not agree on the goals as markets enable us to disagree peacefully while we pursue our own way. However, to sustain this kind of ’means- but not ‘ends-connected’ society, we must be willing to tolerate differences with others and we have to recognize that our freedom to achieve our ends comes at the cost of allowing others the same, even if we find those ends distasteful.

ECAEF invited papers on this topic in 2017. The winners are now invited to present their papers at a special event in Vaduz, Principality of Liechtenstein, in February, 2018. These are their abstracts:

1. Prize: Mattias Oppold

Does Tolerance Become a Crime when Applied to Evil? The subject of this paper is the need for tolerance within society and its moral limitations. The examination of this subject will include three parts. The first part will address the general conditions of morality based on the philosophy of IMMANUEL KANT. It will be stressed that morality paradoxically compels to a toleration of evil. The second part will address the general conditions for coherence in human society according to the legal theory of DAVID HUME. This theory will give an evidence that humans could unlikely continue as an intelligent, and potentially moral, species without having three principles of justice established in their culture. The third part of the paper will question the moral normativity of these principles in the light of KANT’s system, assuming that their legal implementation were unequivocal. A consideration of two general effects that a single transgression of justice may produce will lead to the paradox that morality can allow the committing of a legal crime but never its toleration when such a crime is committed by others. The paper’s conclusion will be that tolerance is not a crime when applied to evil, but rather evil when applied to crime …

2. Prize: Marcos Falcone

Does Tolerance Become a Crime When Applied to Evil? Yes, When the Government Shows Up. Though free, pluralistic societies develop continuously without a shared hierarchy of particular ends, this does not take into account what such a system exists for in the first place. Its goals, this paper argues, must be analyzed in order to answer the question of whether ‘tolerance’ becomes a crime when applied to evil. Such an analysis, in turn, can be made more complex by applying the question to individuals or governments. It can be concluded that, while no individual could ever be charged with a crime of the sort, governments certainly can be, according to their own rules, if their citizens’ freedoms become impaired by policy-making based on ‘tolerance’ …

3. Prize: Richard Mason

Legal Tolerance, Non-legal Intolerance, and the Marketplace of Ideas | The debate over tolerance and its place in democratic society has made a strong comeback in recent years. With politics in society becoming ever more dominated by the influences of the ‘Alt Right’ and ‘Alt Left’ calls for the punching of nazis¨ and shifts towards tribal argumentation we are once more forced to reexamine Western society’s approach to free speech, democracy and toleration of extreme ideas. Must we be intolerant of intolerant ideas if we are to preserve our tolerant society? Is freedom of speech still a guaranteeable right? Through analysis of key philosophical approaches to tolerance application of economic principles to theories of tolerations¨ and analysis of contemporary and historical examples this paper aims to demonstrate how a combination of legal toleration and non-legal intolerance provides an effective buttress against intolerance without the need to infringe on fundamental rights …