prohibiting special legislation in all cases where general laws already exist.
It is essential to the existence of law, that there be power to enforce. Otherwise law becomes the expression of mere wish or advice. Since physical substances and forces have no intelligence and no power to resist, the four elements already mentioned exhaust the implications of the term ?law as applied to nature. In the case of rational and free agents, however, law implies in addition: (e) Duty or obligation to obey and (f) Sanctions, or pains and penalties for disobedience.
?Law that has no penalty is not law but advice, and the government in which infliction does not follow transgression is the reign of rogues or demons.? On the question whether any of the punishments of civil law are legal sanctions, except the punishment of death, see N. W. Taylor, Moral Govt., 2:367-387. Rewards are motives, but they are not sanctions. Since public opinion may be conceived of as billeting penalties for violation of her will, we speak figuratively of the laws of society, of fashion, of etiquette, of honor. Only so far as the community of nations can and does by sanctions compel obedience, can we with propriety assert the existence of international law. Even among nations, however, there may be moral as well as physical sanctions. The decision of an international tribunal has the same sanction as a treaty, and if the former is impotent, the latter also is. Fines and imprisonment do not deter decent people from violations of law half so effectively as do the social penalties of ostracism and disgrace and it will be the same with the findings of an international tribunal. Diplomacy, without ships and armies has been said to be law without penalty. But exclusion from civilized society is penalty. ?In the unquestioning obedience to fashion?s decrees, to which we all quietly submit, we are simply yielding to the pressure of the persons about us. No one adopts a style of dress because it is reasonable, for the styles are often most unreasonable; but we meekly yield to the most absurd of them rather than resist this force and be called eccentric. So what we call public opinion is the most mighty power today known, whether in society or in politics.?
The will, which thus binds its subjects by commands and penalties is an expression of the nature of the governing power, and reveals the normal relations of the subjects to that power. Finally, therefore, law (g) is an
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