In this essay, written in response to J. A. Hobson, Herbert shows how socialism depends upon the illegitimate use of force.
George H. Smith tackles several misconceptions about the theory of anarchism—and contrasts it with the condition of anarchy.
Auberon Herbert defends individualism against the collectivist ideas that man exists only as part of the group and that “society” has its own wants and needs.
Herbert defends a principle of liberty which holds that “freedom in … pursuit of happiness must not interfere with the exactly corresponding freedom of others.”
Smith discusses the influence of Robert LeFevre on the developing anarchism of Roy A. Childs, Jr.
Auberon Herbert argues that politics must be based on general principles grounded in an understanding of human nature.
Smith begins his series on Roy A. Childs, Jr., with the impact Childs’s anarchism had on his own thinking.
Increasing the sphere of politics leads to bad policy and increased vice.
In this excerpt from Man Versus the State, Herbert Spencer argues that as the state tries to regulate more of our lives, it inches us closer to slavery.
Smith analyzes two kinds of freedom, pragmatic and moral, and gives examples of how this distinction has been used in the history of libertarian thought.
In this chapter from The Man versus the State, Herbert Spencer attacks the rise of paternalist politics.
George H. Smith discusses Spencer’s fear that democracy will destroy freedom in the long run.
George H. Smith discusses how Herbert Spencer’s analyses of nineteenth-century Germany and France contributed to his pessimistic outlook on the future of freedom.
George H. Smith discusses some of Spencer’s concerns about the intellectual and moral obstacles to achieving a free society.
George H. Smith discusses Spencer’s theory of social progress, while calling attention to some of its theoretical problems.
George H. Smith discusses Spencer’s opposition to the Boer War—a cause that dominated the last several years of his life.
George H. Smith discusses the controversy about Spencer’s use of opium and its possible effect on his later pessimism.
George H. 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.
George H. Smith begins his discussion of the free-market theories of Thomas Hodgskin.
George H. 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.