This authoritative text concerns itself with freedom and `alternatives to freedom', based on original survey research of public attitudes to civil and political rights.
It combines and connects explicit and implicit arguments for freedom, with the judgements of public opinion on two levels the general public and politicians encouraging the reader to think about issues both in terms of political theory and public opinion.
The issues considered, all of which may be viewed as alternatives to the narrow conception of freedom as the absence of coercion, are:
* parliamentary sovereignty
* the national interest
* the moral community
Alternate chapters present powerful arguments from political figures such as Lord Armstrong, Lord Jenkins and Roy Hattersley, based on practical experience, and then assess public opinion for each issue.
Alternative values, William L. Miller.
Part 1 Freedom versus Parliament:
Argument - the case for a people's Bill of Rights,Lord Jenkins of Hillhead
Opinions - public opposition to Parliamentary sovereignty, William L. Miller, Annis May Timpson, Michael Lessnoff.
Part 2 Freedom versus the national interest:
Argument - the case for confidentiality in government,Lord Armstrong of Ilminster.
Opinions - public support for secrecy, William L. Miller, Annis May Timpson, Michael Lessnoff.
Part 3 Freedom versus responsibility.
Witness - the dangers of press power without responsibility, Fedor Burlatsky.
Opinions - public support for press censorship,William L. Miller, Annis May Timpson, Michael Lessnoff.
Part 4 Freedom versus accountability.
Witness - a media war of independence, Elemer Hankiss.
Opinions - public opposition to government control of the media, William L. Miller, Annis May Timpson, Michael Lessnoff.
Part 5 Freedom versus equality.
Argument- through equality to liberty, Roy Hattersley.
Opinions - public support for equality, William L. Miller et al.
Part 6 Freedom versus the moral community:
Argument - defining deviancy down, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan.
Opinions - public tolerance of private freedom, William L. Miller, Annis May Timpson, Michael Lessnoff.
Conclusion: culture and constitution in conflict? William L. Miller.