I’m working on a lecture to deliver in Hamburg on “Freedom Properly Understood,” so I’ve been reading up on various theories of “positive freedom,” including Amartya Sen’s Development as Freedom and, naturally, the works of Thomas Hill Green. I wanted to find his “Lecture on Liberal Legislation and Freedom of Contract” but did not have it in my editions of his works. I figured I’d have to trek to a library and spend a half a day getting a copy. Then… I thought I’d check Google Books. I’ve just finished printing chapter from the facsimile of the 1906 edition. Eureka!
(It’s pretty awful stuff, though. As he concludes his attack on freedom (in the name of freedom),
“The danger of legislation, either in the interests of a privileged class or for the promotion of particular religious opinions, we may fairly assume to be over. The popular jealousy of law, once justifiable enough, is therefore out of date. The citizens of England now make its law. We may ask them by law to put a restraint on themselves in the matter of strong drink. We ask them further to limit, or even altogether to give up, the not very precious liberty of buying and selling alcohol, in order that they may become more free to exercise the faculties and improve the talents which God has given them.”