Smith criticizes Hume’s claim that reason cannot motivate actions, and explains how moral sense philosophers dealt with the problem of differing moral standards.
Randy E. Barnett discusses his new book, Our Republican Constitution. What’s the difference between a constitutional democracy and a constitutional republic?
“Wicked princes [are much like] warthogs, which if they be suffered to have their snouts in the ground…will suddenly have in all the body.”
“Evil customs (be they never so old) are not to be suffered, but to be utterly abolished: and none may prescribe to do evil, whether king or subject.”
George H. Smith explores various ways in which ideas influence human action, and why ideas are essential to the success of libertarianism.
In this episode, Caleb O. Brown reads part two of a selection from Barry Goldwater’s 1960 book The Conscience of a Conservative.
“This rule is the law of Nature…reduced by Christ our Savior…: You will love the Lord your God above all things, and your neighbor as yourself.”
“If we would know man in all his subtleties, we must deviate into the world of miracles and sorcery…It is here that man is most astonishing.”
Smith explains some fundamental tenets of the moral sense school of ethics, especially as found in the writings of Francis Hutcheson.
Gary Gerstle discusses his book on American history and governance, Liberty and Coercion: The Paradox of American Government from the Founding to the Present.
The greatest evils are typically perpetrated by ideologues committed to false conceptions of the good.
“A new system of education should no longer function as a midwife to the state and to its concept of the citizen.”
George H. Smith, drawing from Machiavelli’s The Prince, discusses two essential ingredients of successful states.
“If we ponder the history of compulsory education…it may well seem that the Klan and the ‘liberal’ educational reformers were not so far apart after all.”
“Trying to improve the government school system in the 1990s is like a great national effort to improve horses in the 1890s.”
“Adamnan of [Iona] will help you, O women!
Give unto your prince all the good things that are you!”
William Irwin joins us to talk about existentialism and libertarianism. What did thinkers like Sartre and Neitzsche have to say about capitalism and human freedom?
When the Roman Empire collapsed, society persisted and new regimes thrived. Europe quickly became a patchwork of new and competing socio-political orders.