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The problem with the task of “proving” either that humans should be controlled or should be free is that it isn’t at all clear what should count as proof. Even more troubling is the reality that, even if there is clarity about what should count as proof, how that proof justifies and motivates any particular course of action—how proof leads to one direction being taken over any other—is absolutely not a given. This is so even if we accept the guiding premise that if humans are basically good, then they should be free, and if humans are basically evil, they should be controlled. My inclination is to deny this premise. But, before even venturing down that treacherous road, the complexity of the premise’s proposition as well as its application and evaluation should not be lost sight of.
So, how is the idea of the premise a complex one? On the face of it, on the most intuitive, commonsense reading, it seems obvious: of course the goodness of humans determines that they should be free, of course freedom only works and is possible for humans with goodness; of course the evil of humans determines that they should be controlled, of course control is best and appropriate and applicable for humans with evil. But – really, are we so sure, are these propositions so incontestable, are they givens not susceptible...
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