Explore

Aaron Ross Powell

Aaron Ross Powell is Director and Editor of Libertarianism.org, a project of the Cato Institute. Libertarianism.org presents introductory material as well as new scholarship related to libertarian philosophy, theory, and history. He is also co-host of Libertarianism.org’s popular podcast, Free Thoughts. His writing has appeared in Liberty and The Cato Journal. He earned a JD from the University of Denver.

Free Thoughts

Private Schooling for Everyone

featuring Robert Luddy, Trevor Burrus, and Aaron Ross Powell on Jun 9, 2017

Robert Luddy joins us this week to talk about his ventures as the founder of several successful private schools in and around Raleigh, North Carolina. Could private education supplant public schooling?

Free Thoughts

Lessons from a Bank-Robbing Law Professor

featuring Shon Hopwood, Trevor Burrus, and Aaron Ross Powell on Jun 16, 2017

Shon Hopwood joins us this week to tell about his journey from bank robber to federal prisoner to U.S. Supreme Court practitioner and Georgetown law professor.

Free Thoughts

Liberalism 1.0

featuring Deirdre McCloskey, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Jun 30, 2017

Deirdre McCloskey has a few suggestions that she hopes will make libertarians more humane and empathetic. What sort of rhetorical tactics should libertarians use?

Free Thoughts

Who Elected Donald Trump?

featuring Emily Ekins, Trevor Burrus, and Aaron Ross Powell on Jul 14, 2017

Emily Ekins has identified five different types of voters that elected Donald Trump as president. Do these groups represent a big shift in American politics?

Free Thoughts

We Broke the First Rule of Fight Club

featuring William Irwin, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Jul 21, 2017

William Irwin joins us for a discussion about the novel Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk and the movie it inspired. Are consumer choices authentic choices?

Free Thoughts

The Fate of the West

featuring Bill Emmott, Trevor Burrus, and Aaron Ross Powell on Aug 4, 2017

Bill Emmott joins us to talk about his new book, The Fate of the West: The Battle to Save the World’s Most Successful Political Idea (2017).

Free Thoughts

Close America’s Overseas Bases

featuring John Glaser, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Aug 11, 2017

John Glaser proposes a policy shift that would save money and make the United States safer: closing some or all of America’s 800 overseas military bases.

Free Thoughts

Free Thoughts on Free Thoughts: 200 Episodes and Counting

featuring Tess Terrible, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Aug 18, 2017

Our producer, Tess Terrible, interviews Aaron and Trevor for Free Thoughts’s 200th episode. How did Free Thoughts get started, and what have we learned along the way?

Free Thoughts

North Korea 101

featuring Michael Malice, Trevor Burrus, and Aaron Ross Powell on Sep 29, 2017

Michael Malice joins us to give a primer on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. What’s North Korea like?

Free Thoughts

Washington’s Five Tricks

featuring David Schoenbrod, Trevor Burrus, and Aaron Ross Powell on Oct 20, 2017

David Schoenbrod shares five specific tricks that politicians from both parties use to avoid public accountability.

Free Thoughts

Your World on the Blockchain

featuring Brock Cusick, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Nov 10, 2017

Brock Cusick joins us this week to talk about bitcoin and the decentralized blockchain technology that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies run on.

Free Thoughts

Do Employers Rule Our Lives?

featuring Elizabeth Anderson, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Nov 17, 2017

Elizabeth Anderson joins us to talk about her new book, Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (and Why We Don’t Talk About It).

Free Thoughts

Punk Rock Politics

featuring Frank Portman, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Dec 1, 2017

Dr. Frank of The Mr. T Experience joins us to talk about the politics of punk rock. What is punk rebelling against? Is it inherently political?

Free Thoughts

How Conscious Capitalism Can Solve Global Poverty

featuring Michael Strong, Trevor Burrus, and Aaron Ross Powell on Dec 15, 2017

Michael Strong joins us this week to talk about the role that capitalism and social entrepreneurship play in alleviating global poverty.

Free Thoughts

Free Speech Online

featuring Will Duffield, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Dec 22, 2017

We talk about the freedom of speech in the internet era. How has the shift to digital communication changed interpretations of the 1st Amendment?

Free Thoughts

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

featuring Emma Ashford, Aaron Ross Powell, and Trevor Burrus on Jan 12, 2018

Emma Ashford gives us a primer on Saudi Arabia, the oil-rich Middle Eastern nation that is one of the last remaining absolute monarchies in the world.

Free Thoughts

Trump’s Assault on America’s Institutions

featuring Aaron Ross Powell, Trevor Burrus, and John Samples on Jan 19, 2018

John Samples joins us to discuss how the Trump presidency is challenging America’s institutions.

Free Thoughts

The Case Against Education

featuring Aaron Ross Powell, Trevor Burrus, and Bryan Caplan on Feb 16, 2018

Bryan Caplan gives us the case against traditional education.