Impossible Paradigm Shift

Thomas Kuhn spoke of a “paradigm shift” in relation to ways of thinking, as referenced to the history of developments in science. “Paradigm shift” is used in many contexts now, including in relation to values or first principles–such as the first principles in financial accounting, or fundamental rights.

How do fundamental rights ever shift?

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About brucelarochelle

Practising Lawyer and Part-Time University Instructor (Accounting, Commercial Law, Organizational Behaviour); Part-Time Federal Tribunal Member. Non-practising Chartered Professional Accountant (Chartered Accountant and Certified Management Accountant).
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2 Responses to Impossible Paradigm Shift

  1. Rights shift all the time. What we consider “fundamental rights” are usually not actually that, but rather privileges bestowed by society or a legislature. For example, Canadian prison inmates not that long ago won the “right” to vote in elections while incarcerated, something previously denied them. Two centuries ago many people thought it was their fundamental right to own other people because of their skin colour. I would argue that if it is given or taken away by a legislature it may not be a right, but rather a privilege.

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