July
2024

June
2024

May
2024

April
2024

July 2024

Article

Rights, Restrictions, and Reality: 50 Years of Anarchy, State, and Utopia

By Aeon Skoble

Robert Nozick's Anarchy, State, and Utopia was released in 1974, shortly after (and partly in response to) his Harvard colleague John Rawls' 1971 A Theory of Justice. Anarchy, State, and Utopia included a theory of rights and a right-based account of liberalism in the c...

Book Review

Universal Economics: Necessary Reading for the Well-Trained Economist

By Alexander William Salter

A Liberty Classics Book Review of Universal Economics, by Armen Alchian and William Allen.1 What do you do when economists stop believing in economics? The "dismal science" never merited its dreary epithet, but trends in economics education at the graduate an...

Book Review

The Religion Business

By Arnold Kling

This book is about how the world's religions have gained such power, what they do with it, and how abuses of this power can be constrained. —Paul Seabright, The Divine Economy: How Religions Compete for Wealth, Power, and People,1 p. 6 Paul Seabright's T...

Article

T.S. Eliot on Economics and Education

By Richard Gunderman

Thomas Stearns Eliot. Photo by Lady Ottoline Morrell, 1934. Although the most illustrious honors in economics, such as the Nobel Prize, are typically awarded to specialists in the field, many of the most penetrating economic insights do not come from economists. To l...

June 2024

Article

Self-Governance As Co-Production of Rules

By Vlad Tarko

Elinor Ostrom Introduction The commons are the typical example in which self-interested individual actions do not aggregate into beneficial collective outcomes, as judged by members of the community themselves. They are the main counter-example to Adam Smith's log...

Article

Entrepreneurial Failure: Fault or Feature?

By John Estill

While much has been written about entrepreneurship in business and economics publications, much less has been written about entrepreneurial failure. Some writers in the popular press have interesting things to say, such as Megan McArdle's The Up Side of Down: Why Failin...

Book Review

Henry George: An Exploration of Some Consequences to Taxing Only Land

By Paul Forrester

Henry George A Liberty Classics Book Review of Progress and Poverty, by Henry George.1 Henry George's Progress and Poverty (1879) was among the most important and widely read books published in the 19th century, but George's work and the single tax movemen...

Book Review

Helmut Schoeck’s Envy: A Theory of Social Behaviour

By Art Carden

A Liberty Classic Book Review of Envy: A Theory of Social Behaviour by Helmut Schoeck.1 I've been such a fool, Vassili. Man will always be man. There is no new man. We tried so hard to create a society that is equal, where there'd be nothing to ...

May 2024

Article

Is China Winning? Rethinking Perceptions of Success in Central Planning

By Ryan Yonk and Ethan Yang

The contrast often presented between America and China is one where Beijing is a highly competent, well-oiled autocracy while the United States is a political circus held back by partisan drama. On the surface, and especially with recent news headlines, this may seem tr...

Article

California Dreaming: The Effects of California’s “Fast Food” Minimum Wage

By Richard B. McKenzie

On April 1 of this year, California fast-food restaurant chains with sixty or more national locations (for example, McDonalds and Chipotle, but not Bill's Burgers or Dick Church's Diner or other off-brand restaurants in the state without national locations) were require...

Book Review

Using Reason to Understand the Abuse and Decline of Reason

By Rosolino Candela

A Liberty Classics Book Review of Studies on the Abuse and Decline of Reason: Text and Documents, by F.A. Hayek (edited by Bruce Caldwell). 1 According to F.A. Hayek, what are the theoretical and historical reasons for the tragedies of socialism that emerged ...

Book Review

Mir McLuhanism

By Arnold Kling

... digital media not only enhance information exchange and render offline life obsolete—they also reverse literacy and retrieve orality. ... This book is about orality, which once was obsolesced by writing, and about literacy, which is now becoming obsoles...

April 2024

Article

China’s Belt and Road Initiative: If You Build It, Will They Come?

By Gregory Caskey

To begin with a bit of trivia, who said the following line? "When you give roses to others, their fragrance lingers on your hand." If you guessed Cole Porter, you'd be wrong. Nor does this line hail from a wooden quote board for sale on Etsy. It was delivered by ...

Book Review

Individualism versus Racism

By Arnold Kling

Similarly, to advocate colorblindness is not to pretend you don't notice race. To advocate colorblindness is to endorse an ethical principle: The colorblind principle: we should treat people without regard to race, both in our public policy and in our private lives...

Article

Misanthropy Springs from the Lust for Power: H.G. Wells

By Richard Gunderman

H.G. Wells Best known today for science fiction novels such as The Time Machine, The Invisible Man, and The War of the Worlds, H.G. Wells was in his own day widely regarded as a prophet. Trained in science, he predicted the wireless telephone, directed energy weapons...

Book Review

Princess Mathilde and the Immorality of Politics

By Pierre Lemieux

A Liberty Classics Book Review of Against Politics: On Government, Anarchy, and Order, by Anthony de Jasay.1 We cannot be against politics, especially in a democratic regime; isn't that obvious? In his 1997 book Against Politics: On Government, Anarchy, a...