Books That Inspire 2006


 
On Liberty
John Stuart Mill


One book which has been especially important to me is On Liberty, an extended essay of political philosophy written by John Stuart Mill in 1859. It was very helpful to me as a public official as I grappled with questions of how far government should go in regulating individual behavior. It left me with a strong sense of the value of freedom and the dangers of censorship. It deepened my belief that our society should be a free marketplace idea because no generation and no prevailing group has ever had a corner on the truth. The book helped teach me that any suppression of freedom or open debate should be viewed with great concern.
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David Boren

President