Ralph Raico, one of the best living libertarian historians, on Rothbard’s birthday.
Philosopher Robert Nozick’s Anarchy, State, and Utopia, published in 1974, cemented libertarianism’s place among the political philosophies taken seriously in academia. In it, Nozick defended the “minimal state”—what latter came to be called minarchism—and showed how it could become a “framework for utopias.”
But Nozick’s interests weren’t limited to political theory. He turned his remarkable mind to nearly every branch of philosophy in such wide-ranging works as Philosophical Explanations, The Examined Life, and Invariances: The Structure of the Objective World.
John Rawls was a political theorist who revived interest in the field. His work can be interpreted in support of some free-market ideas.
Guaranteeing a minimum income to the poor is better than our current system of welfare, Zwolinski argues. And it can be justified by libertarian principles.
Sanchez examines the question, concluding that intellectuals support government intervention because it makes their work have greater importance.
Does the non-aggression principle prohibit all pollution, including industry, driving, and flashlights?
Locke wanted to prove that the world is not a mere amalgam of violence and arbitrary authority and that there is something that separates a legitimate from an illegitimate government.
Though they don’t think there’s anything wrong with unequal wealth distribution per se, libertarians can and do criticize the unjust processes that can lead to inequality.
Hazony’s views about the role of individuals and the nature of ethics mean that nations of any type are permitted to wage unjust war and impose sweeping domestic oppression. This nationalism should not guide our thinking today.
What the state should look like varies even among libertarians.
Libertarians believe that laissez-faire policy, or the freest form of economy, provides the greatest net benefit to individuals and to society.
“A number of areas have emerged from our survey in which further work may produce results which can command a consensus among libertarian philosophers.”
Murray Rothbard’s writings provided a detailed and systematic explanation of politics, society, and economics consistent with libertarian ideas.
Edward C. Feser outlines some common arguments conservatives raise against libertarians and how those criticisms have affected both movements.
Ayn Rand and Max Stirner argued different versions of egoism.
Crider argues that a better conception of social justice addresses oppression and equality of human dignity.
Classical liberalism typically refers to liberal philosophers in the 17th and 18th centuries, but whose ideas are carried on by libertarians today.
Also known as the death penalty, capital punishment has divided libertarians over the power of government and the justice of criminal procedures.
The nonaggression axiom or principle mandates that individuals do not use physical force against others or their property, except for retaliation.