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Julia Barragán
Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea / Universidad del País Vasco
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One of the most disturbing problems of social decision making and indeed quite difficult to resolve is the need to reconcile individual rationality with that of society. While individual rationalizing rules indicate ways to maximize benefits without any restriction, the collective point of view tilts toward the limitation of individual maximization. This is the very core of the so-called Prisoner’s Dilemma which is but a formal way of saying that there is good reason for every individual to defect on a bargain; the ‘good reason’, that generally takes the gentler form of a self-exception, is that if a player defects and his opponent does not, then the former profits. The purpose of this study is to show the highly erosive character of this self-exceptions and also to make evident its perverse normative power.

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