By Dr. Hans Karl von Zeßner-Spitzenberg
Translated by M. T. Scarince
Translator’s note: This is the second part in a series of posts translating the work of Austrian Legitimist philosopher Hans Karl Freiherr von Zeßner-Spitzenberg (1885-1938), an active member of the Kaiser-Karl-Gebetsliga and a martyr for the cause of Austrian independence from the National Socialist occupation. Read Part I, Part III, Part IV.
For the purposes of this work, the following system is briefly outlined:
1. Morality and Public Law
Public powers and public legal systems are also essentially subject to the same moral principles and stand within the framework of the same Divine world order as private rights, powers and authorities. Here also, human beings are their bearers, responsible for their institution and exercise. Here also, we are dealing with the powers of individuals or entire communities in the fulfillment of a profession, which, like every profession, must serve (after God’s glory) not only the beneficiary himself or the community which he serves, but also the good of his fellow men.
Indeed, the power-competence in this case is necessarily more strongly directed towards authoritative ordering power of the rights of others than it is elsewhere, on account of the main goal of public order; here also it is only within the framework of the Eternal order, which protects and recognizes the appropriate vested rights and inviolable jurisdiction of individuals. From the moral point of view, therefore, public law can be distinguished from private law in these matters only in its object and in its particular purpose, but not in general demands and basic attitudes.