Smith discusses Spencer’s theory of social progress, while calling attention to some of its theoretical problems.
Smith discusses Spencer’s opposition to the Boer War—a cause that dominated the last several years of his life.
Smith discusses the controversy about Spencer’s use of opium and its possible effect on his later pessimism.
Smith begins his series on Spencer’s pessimistic outlook on the future of freedom and the reasons behind it.
Smith discusses Thomas Hodgskin’s critique of utilitarianism and his contention that the primary concern of legislators is to preserve their own power.
Smith discusses the utilitarianism of Jeremy Bentham and why it so alarmed the defenders of natural rights.
Smith continues his discussion of Thomas Hodgskin by exploring some of the key arguments in his neglected book on economics, Popular Political Economy.
Smith begins his discussion of the free-market theories of Thomas Hodgskin.
Smith discusses Thomas Hodgskin’s most controversial work, Labour Defended Against the Claims of Capital.
Smith begins his series on Thomas Hodgskin, one of the most remarkable, if little known and unjustly neglected, libertarian thinkers of the nineteenth century.
Smith explores the ideas of Irving Kristol and Robert Bork on culture. He begins with a discussion of the anti-jazz crusade of the 1920s.
Smith gives a personal twist to his criticism of neoconservatism. He tells the story of how a disagreement with Roy Childs over the ideas of Irving Kristol resulted in a serious argument.
Smith begins his series on neoconservatism by exploring some of its fundamental differences with libertarianism.
In this selection from The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith discusses prices in terms of labor and happiness.
Smith explores Thomas Jefferson’s belief in the value of history, and his plan for public universities.
In this essay, Richard Cobden argues that “that no foreign State has a right by force to interfere with the domestic concerns of another State.”
Smith concludes this series with a close look at Herbert Spencer’s views on charity and the poor.
Smith continues his discussion of Herbert Spencer and William Graham Sumner, explaining how they explicitly repudiated the ideas associated with social Darwinism.
Smith interrupts his series on education with a timely discussion of social Darwinism.
Constant shows how the idea of liberty has changed, from the ancient conception of freedom as part of a collection to the modern, individualist view.
Smith discusses Jefferson’s ideas about education and his plan for a decentralized system of public schools.
John Locke lays out the foundational arguments of liberalism: people have rights preexisting government, and government exists to protect those rights.
Smith explores the Voluntaryist critique of those who support free trade in religion and commerce but advocate state interference in education as well as the debate between J. S. Mill and Herbert Spencer about the proper role of government in education.
Wollstonecraft argues the case for women’s rights entirely in libertarian terms of equal and natural rights.
Smith explains why benevolence is desirable but justice is essential not just to to civil society but also to how we measure our behavior in the eyes of others.