One myth which needs to be taken with a considerable grain of salt is that the courts operated as vigilant protectors of liberty. Wherever government in some form or other acted repressively, as during the First World War against persons suspected of potential disloyalty, or against Irish nationalists, or against left-wingers in the inter-war years, or right-wingers during the Second World War, the courts were consistently prepared to back the authorities; if there was a theory it was that it was for Parliament to control the executive, not judges. In so far as liberty was protected this was a consequence not of the independence of a liberal judiciary, but of the interrelationships between different governmental institutions, and of traditions of respect for individual rights.… The British judicial tradition of always backing the authorities has only in relatively recent times been weakened