Lon fuller 11/15/2011
1. The lack of rules or law, which leads to adhoc and inconsistent adjudication.
2. Failure to publicize or make known the rules of law.
3. Unclear or obscure legislation that is impossible to understand.
4. Retroactive legislation.
5. Contradictions in the law.
6. Demands that are beyond the power of the subjects and the ruled.
7. Unstable legislation (ex. daily revisions of laws).
8. Divergence between adjudication/administration and legislation
If any of these 8 principles is not present in a system of governance, a system will not be
a legal one
The more closely a system is able to adhere to them, the nearer it will be to the
ideal, though in reality all systems must make compromises.
These principles, Fuller argues, represent the "internal morality of law", and he
argues that compliance with them leads to substantively just laws and away from evil ones
Hart criticises Fuller's work, saying that these principles are merely ones of efficacy; it is
inapt, he says, to call them a morality
One could just as well have an inner morality of poisoning as an inner morality of law, but of course we find
this idea absurd.
The former agrees with Hart that it is compatible with great iniquity, arguing that evil regimes would
have good prudential reasons for complying with it.
The latter contends that adhering to the rule of law has value in and of itself, giving
citizens a liberty to act as they please and conform their conduct to the rules and
know that if they do so force beyond that which is prescribed will no