It is worth noting right at the start of any examination of Mill’s account of state paternalism that it is a presupposition of any principle of paternalism (and so of all discussion of moral problems generated by paternalism) that a meaningful distinction can indeed be drawn between behaviour that is (at least mainly and directly) self-regarding and behaviour that is other-regarding. For, however such a distinction might be drawn, there can be no distinct moral problem regarding paternalism unless it can be made in some significant form or other, since (supposing any distinction of this kind to be illegitimate or misconceived) all ‘paternalistic’ invasions of liberty can be justified as necessary for the protection of the welfare of persons other than those whose liberty has been restricted. In that case, no restriction of liberty would ever be (wholly or mainly) paternalistic, so there could never be a genuine moral dilemma as to whether it is proper to coerce an individual solely in his own interest. Hence, all discussion about paternalism is logically or conceptually parasitic on the possibility of making a distinction analogous to that which Mill wishes to make between self-regarding and other-regarding actions. In specifying harm to others as a necessary condition of justified restriction of liberty, the Principle of Liberty disqualifies an indefinitely large range of reasons as sufficient to support such restriction, among which paternalist considerations are important.