Re-reading On Liberty

This week saw the inaugural meeting of a Liberal Democrat book club which I’ve kicked off with Dawn Barnes in a small effort to plug a big gap in most local Liberal Democrat activities. Talk about campaigning or current policy is common; talk about political beliefs is very rare.

No surprise really that our first book was John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty, which generated a very good discussion around how different or not the world is now from his time and therefore how relevant some of his arguments are now (particularly given his own caveats that even his firm liberal principles didn’t apply to all types of society).

Thanks to all the participants it was a fun and thoughtful evening and if you’ve ever thought about trying something similar in your patch (or this post has made you wonder that), I’d heartily recommend giving it a go.

UPDATE: There’s now also an email course in Liberal and Liberal Democrat political philosophy.

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