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.
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.
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.
The fundamentals of the theory of liberty.
Eric Mack joins our show again to talk about common objections to libertarianism by dissecting John Rawls viewpoint.
Minarchists and anarchists—i.e. champions of the night-watchman state and opponents of any state—aren’t as clearly distinguishable as one might think.
D’Amato explores the idea of libertarian socialism by analyzing the history of individualist anarchism and “voluntary socialism.”
George H. Smith discusses Robert Nozick’s criticisms of Locke’s property theory.
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.
Natural rights are an essential part of the liberal tradition.
Natural rights underdetermine a society’s legal institutions and leave the door open for a much larger state than minarchists or anarchists want.
The link between American gun culture and white supremacy undermines conservative arguments for gun rights—but not classical liberal arguments.
The principles of liberty are not culturally bound.
The justification of libertarian political institutions follows logically from relatively uncontroversial moral intuitions held by a broad range of reasonable people.
Reasonable people will accept libertarian political institutions because they let us live together in peace while pursuing our different values and lifestyles.
The ethical system of Immanuel Kant, properly understood, justifies libertarian political institutions.
Libertarian political institutions would respect people’s natural rights.
Libertarian political institutions would maximize utility.