Front Page Titles (by Subject) chapter five: On the Upholding of Morality - Principles of Politics Applicable to All Governments
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chapter five: On the Upholding of Morality - Benjamin Constant, Principles of Politics Applicable to All Governments 
Principles of Politics Applicable to a all Governments, trans. Dennis O’Keeffe, ed. Etienne Hofmann, Introduction by Nicholas Capaldi (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2003).
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On the Upholding of Morality
There are the same drawbacks in the upholding of morality by government as in the protection it affords enlightenment. There is even a further danger. These supports have the effect of adding a motive of material interest to the natural motives which bring man to virtue. Some philosophers, following this basic idea, have feared even the intervention of divine omnipotence by way of punishment or reward, as threatening impartiality. Each man bringing together in  the idea of God all the perfections, however, he is at least sure that the decisions of eternally infallible providence will never be in opposition to the justice which must direct men’s actions. It is not the same with governments, though, since they are exposed to error, liable to bias, and capable of injustice. You are not subordinating the morality of man only to a more powerful being, itself already a drawback, but to beings like himself, and perhaps ones less worthwhile than he. You thereby familiarize him with the idea of making what seems to him his duty, bend the knee before their power, from no calculation save interest. Even were the protection of the government never granted save to virtue, I would still hold that virtue would be better off independent. The protection of government being grantable, however, to the vice which deceives or serves it, it seems to me we should reject an intervention which in principle harms the purity of our sensibilities and in application often lacks the special advantage attributed to it.
It is, moreover, far less necessary than people think that government, in a legal way, should encourage men to be moral, kindly, and generous. Provided society prevents its members from hurting each other, they will find enough reasons for mutual service. A positive personal interest engages men in rendering one another reciprocal services, in order to receive them in their turn, while only negative interest gets them to abstain from harmful actions. Their activity, which is one of their natural penchants, brings them to do good to one another; but this same activity can also bring them to do ill. Each man has only two ways of getting his fellows to collaborate with what he wishes: force and persuasion. He must either constrain them or lead them to his purpose by gaining their goodwill. If the law cuts off the first way, individuals will invariably take the second. If they lose all hope of success through violence, they will wish to achieve such success by deserving recognition and affection. Government has nothing to do save to see that men do not hurt each other. If they do not hurt, they will serve each other.