Explore

George H. Smith

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 and most recent book, The System of Liberty, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2013.

columns

Thomas Paine Versus Edmund Burke, Part 1

by George H. Smith on Apr 25, 2014

Smith discusses some background of the debate between Paine and Burke, and the furor created by Paine’s Rights of Man.

columns

Rudolf Rocker and the Will to Power, Part 1

by George H. Smith on Jan 24, 2014

In Nationalism and Culture, a classic history of libertarian ideas, Rudolf Rocker uses the struggle of freedom against power as his theoretical framework.

columns

The Lust for Power

by George H. Smith on Jan 17, 2014

The desire for power is insatiable and its corrupting influence haas been dominant themes in libertarian theory and history.

columns

State and Society, Part 3

by George H. Smith on Dec 17, 2013

Smith, drawing from Machiavelli’s The Prince, discusses two essential ingredients of successful states.

columns

State and Society, Part 2

by George H. Smith on Dec 10, 2013

Smith explains the meaning of “society” and “institution,” and he discusses the distinction between designed and undesigned institutions.

columns

The Liberty Party

by George H. Smith on May 14, 2018

Smith discusses some circumstances that led to the formation of the abolitionist Liberty Party in 1840.

columns

Defending Slavery by Attacking Capitalists

by George H. Smith on Apr 27, 2018

Smith explains how some Southerners defended chattel slavery by contrasting it favorably with “wage slavery” in the North. 

columns

Moncure Conway’s Fall from Grace

by George H. Smith on Apr 13, 2018

How was the abolitionist Moncure Conway widely criticized by other American abolitionists for his peace proposal that would end the Civil War?