Discussion Questions on Swift's discussion of liberty (1)

1. Swift argues that the distinction between positive and negative liberty should not be understood as a distinction between on the one hand "freedom from" (restraints) and, on the other hand, "freedom to" (do something or achieve some goal). Why not?

2. Swift endorses Gerald MacCallum's view that freedom should be understood as a triadic relation. What are the three places in this relation, and why it is useful to see freedom in this way.

3. Swift argues that positive liberty can be understood as effective freedom (or opportunity), self-realization (or autonomy), and democratic control. Why should these be regarded as notions of positive liberty? How, in terms of MacCallum's analysis, should these three notions be distinguished from one another? In contrast to positive liberty is there only one concept of negative liberty?