Paternalism in the USA and Johhn Stuart Mills.

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The idea of paternalism is based on the fact that not all people are rational all the time and sometimes states intervene into the lives of others for their own good. These paternalists advance people's interests such as life, health, and safety at the expense of their liberty. John Stuart Mills was a Utilitarian Philosopher and political writer that has been extremely influential to our society today. He is against most paternalistic action and is an advocate of maximum liberty. He was raised to become a modern thinker that became a revolutionary philosopher and has written countless essays, books, and magazine articles explaining his many ideals. Paternalism has become customary law today in most societies, but is still a topic of extreme debate by many interest groups and political writers of the new millennium. Many paternalistic laws are very widely accepted and used today but the question of whether or not they are just and moral remains unanswered although there are many who have taken sides on this controversial issue.

John Stuart Mill was born in London on May 20, 1806 and was the eldest son of James Mill. He was educated entirely by his father as a child and adolescent. His father who stressed academic excellence also shielded him from outside interaction with other children. "He [Mill] believed this gave him an advantage of a quarter of a century over his contemporaries." Mill later realized that his father failed to pay attention to cultural, emotional, and physical growth, which he felt somewhat resentful for. He was simply trained to be a great thinker. Mill began to admire and follow the work of Jeremy Bentham at around age fifteen. He felt Bentham was a revolutionary theorist and that the Utilitarian principle was genius. 1The principle of utility, he says, understood...