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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.

Excursions

Immanuel Kant and the Natural Law Tradition

featuring George H. Smith on Jul 25, 2018

George Smith discusses Kant’s attempt to justify objective moral principles and his views on when the use of coercion is morally proper.

Liberty Chronicles

Revolution in Utica and Buffalo

featuring Anthony Comegna on Jul 17, 2018

The Polk years began in a sort of uneasy truce between radicals and conservatives. 

Excursions

Some Personal Reflections on Ayn Rand

featuring George H. Smith on Jul 11, 2018

George Smith discusses some good and bad influences that Ayn Rand’s ideas had on his own intellectual development.

Excursions

Ayn Rand on Aristotle

featuring George H. Smith on Jul 4, 2018

George Smith examines some of Rand’s claims about the beneficial influence of Aristotle’s ideas on the course of Western civilization.

Excursions

On the Influence of Ideas

featuring George H. Smith on Jun 27, 2018

George Smith discusses the issue of whether we should hold a philosopher responsible for the beliefs of those followers who agree with him.

columns

Criticisms of Natural Rights

by George H. Smith on Jun 26, 2018

Smith discusses the common argument that natural rights will lead inevitably to anarchism. 

Excursions

Some Reflections on the History of Philosophy

featuring George H. Smith on Jun 20, 2018

George Smith explains the views of Kant and Hegel on the history of philosophy, and explores whether moral judgments should be applied to the realm of ideas.

columns

Where Do Rights Come From?

by George H. Smith on Jun 15, 2018

Smith continues his brief discussion of how to justify natural rights.

columns

A Justification of Natural Rights

by George H. Smith on Jun 11, 2018

Smith interrupts his series on abolitionism to present a barebones defense of natural rights.

Excursions

Immanuel Kant and Nazism

featuring George H. Smith on Jun 6, 2018

Was Kant somehow responsible for the rise of Nazism? Smith explores two points of view on this issue.

Excursions

Ayn Rand and the History of Philosophy

featuring George H. Smith on May 24, 2018

George Smith discusses whether we should hold a philosopher responsible for how other philosophers use his or her ideas.

Excursions

Ayn Rand on Fascism

featuring George H. Smith on May 23, 2018

George H. Smith explores Rand’s contention that America was sliding down a slippery slope to fascism.