Before any words of title or content, the book begins with a photographic portrait of Spencer. He appears severe, smug, and slightly sad-as if he is about to chastise you for some distasteful breach of moral conduct. The portrait accurately forewarns the reader of the tone of the words that follow. Spencer’s essays read like secular sermons on the common theme that the road to hell on earth is paved with the good intentions of those who seek to expand the state.
Diamond, Arthur M. Jr., "The State of Spencer" (1984). Economics Faculty Publications. 33.