What Does It Mean to Be Free?

Johann von Goethe once wrote, “None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.” Goethe’s statement perfectly captures the plight of the American people in our time. That’s one of the principal challenges that we libertarians face, for if people are convinced they’re free, they have no incentive to break free of their servitude. Even ... [click for more]

One Moral Standard for All

Libertarians make a self-defeating mistake in assuming that their fundamental principles differ radically from most other people’s principles. Think how much easier it would be to bring others to the libertarian position if we realized that they already agree with us in substantial ways. What am I talking about? It’s quite simple. Libertarians believe that the initiation of force is ... [click for more]

The Classical Liberal legacy of Percy Bysshe Shelley

“I have deserted the odorous gardens of literature to journey across the great sandy desert of Politics.” In this manner, the English Romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792–1822) announced a political treatise entitled A Philosophical View of Reform (1819). It states, “The first principle of political reform is the natural equality of men, not with relation to their property ... [click for more]

Defending the Really Undefendable

Back in 1976, economist Walter Block, now of Loyola University in New Orleans, wrote a provocative book titled Defending the Undefendable. In it he famously defended the “pimp, prostitute, scab, slumlord, libeler, moneylender, and other scapegoats in the rogues’ gallery of American society.” Now, Block was not recommending that anyone engage in those occupations or arguing that they ... [click for more]
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