无法之治

开罗,已故的伟大历史学家托尼·朱特(Tony Judt)在其身前最后的文章之一提出了我们应该从过去的一个世纪中学到什么的问题。在过去的一个世纪中,如此之多的士兵和平民在冲突中丧生。我认为,答案的一个重要部分在于法治(rule of law)的关键重要性,不管对于国内还是国际都是如此。

诚然,对于和平的开放社会而言,有许多其他东西对于好生活也至关重要:言论、宗教和结社自由以及选择(和推翻)你自己的政府权力。但没有一样东西可以像在治人者和治于人者之间公平地运用法治那样保证自由社会的自由。

我在担任英国内阁部长和保守党主席期间,有一个名字颇为应景的法律顾问:梅比先生(Mr. Maybe,“也许”之意)。当我因职务需要违反了一些行政法或遭到指控滥用我的法律权力时,他从来不能告诉我法院最终会怎么判。“我们能赢这宗官司吗?”我问梅比先生。他的回答永远是两可的。“您应该赢,”有一次他说,“但我无法保证您会赢。”

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