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Full text of "Authority and the individual"

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A HEALTHY and progressive society requires both
central control and individual and group initiative:
without control there is anarchy, and without initia-
tive there is stagnation. I want in this lecture to
arrive at some general principles as to what matters
should be controlled and what should be left to
private or semi-private initiative. Some of the quali-
ties that we should wish to find in a community are
in their essence static, while others are by their very
nature dynamic. Speaking very roughly, we may
expect the static qualities to be suitable for govern-
mental control, while the dynamic qualities should be
promoted by the initiative of individuals or groups.
But if such initiative is to be possible, and if it is
to be fruitful rather than destructive, it will need
to be fostered by appropriate institutions, and the
safeguarding of such institutions will have to be
one of the functions of government. It is obvious
that in a state of anarchy there could not be
universities or scientific research or publication of
books, or even such simple things as seaside
holidays. In our complex world, there cannot
be fruitful initiative without government, but un-