William F. Buckley, Jr. was an author, commentator, columnist, the founder of National Review, and host of the television show Firing Line. During his lifetime he somewhat interchangeably referred to himself as both a libertarian and a conservative.
Vladimir Bukovsky was a Soviet dissident writer and activist during the ’60s and ’70s. He spent a total of 12 years in Soviet prisons, labor camps, and forced-treatment psychiatric hospitals. He was able to escape the Soviet Union in 1976 thanks to a prisoner exchange.
Robert Higgs is an economic historian whose writings focus on the causes and means of government growth. He is the author of Crisis and Leviathan: Critical Episodes in the Growth of American Government (1989).
In this lecture from 1987, Higgs speaks about governments’ tendency to bend or suspend individual rights during emergency situations. He reviews the history of this in the United States and questions whether the U.S. Constitution is strong enough to protect private rights in the face of an unending string of national crises.
Eamonn Butler is an author on economic and social issues and the director and co-founder of the Adam Smith Institute.
In this lecture from 1984, Butler talks about Friedrich Hayek’s 1944 classic, The Road to Serfdom. He reviews the path to a totalitarian society that Hayek sketches in the short book, and comes to the conclusion that for the most part the Western world is done with heavy-handed authoritarian experimentation.
John Burton is a professor, economist, and author. He is on the advisory council of the Institute for Economic Affairs.
In this video from 1984, Burton speaks about the factors that he believe will ultimately lead to the downfall of the mixed economy: the concentrated benefits and dispersed costs of subsidization and rent-seeking behavior by lobbying groups and special interests.
Richard A. Epstein is the Laurence A. Tisch Professor of Law at New York University as well as an Adjunct Scholar at the Cato Institute. He is the author of Simple Rules for a Complex World (1995) and Skepticism and Freedom: A Modern Case for Classical Liberalism (2004), among many other books.
George Ayittey is a Ghanian economist and the founder and president of the Free Africa Foundation. He also taught economics at American University and is an associate scholar at the Foreign Policy Research Institute.
Walter E. Williams is the John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics at George Mason University and an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute. He is a well-known columnist and the author of South Africa’s War Against Capitalism (1989) and The State Against Blacks (1982).
George H. Smith was formerly Senior Research Fellow for the Institute for Humane Studies, a lecturer on American History for Cato Summer Seminars, and Executive Editor of Knowledge Products. Smith’s fourth book, Themes in the History of Classical Liberalism, is forthcoming from Cambridge University Press, and he is also a regular blogger and essayist at Libertarianism.org.
Robert Poole is one of the founders of the Reason Foundation (which publishes Reason Magazine), and served as its president and CEO from 1978 to 2000. He is currently director of transportation policy at the Reason Foundation and frequently writes about issues related to privatization.
In this video from a Libertarian International conference in 1984, Poole speaks about the moral frameworks surrounding national defense and foreign policy. He also goes into the means of national defense, including a lengthy discussion on nuclear armaments and nuclear shield programs.