Welcome

This site is devoted to advancing the rights-based political philosophy first articulated by John Locke and championed prominently in our day by the late Robert Nozick in his classic Anarchy, State, and Utopia [1974].  It will do so by explaining minimal state libertarianism in a way that is accessible to the intelligent general reader and by hosting a forum that will subject its key ideas to scrutiny and debate.

I make my own modest contribution to this cause in my book, Nozick’s Libertarian Project: An Elaboration and Defense (London: Continuum International, 2011). My second book on this subject, Libertarian Philosophy in the Real World: The Politics of Natural Rights, was just published by Bloomsbury Academic. For additional information about libertarianism, this site, my books, and your host, please follow the links to the left.

New on the Blog

Why Greece is on the Brink of Exit

The ongoing negotiations between Greece’s hard-left leaders and its European creditors (together with the IMF) regarding whether the former will agree to the fiscal and tax reforms demanded by the latter are becoming more farcical by the day. The last five months have brought non-stop drama, melodrama, and posturing, but no resolution. Its creditors see Greece as a potential financial black hole into which ever-larger loans enter but are never repaid. For their part, the Greeks are reluctant to face the fact that cannot both have their cake (the Euro) and eat it too (by continuing to pile up external debt). Continue Reading »

The Magna Carta and Property Rights

We have just marked the eight hundredth anniversary of the Magna Carta, forced by the great barons on England’s King John on June 15, 1215. It had its origin primarily in the King’s insatiable appetite for new taxes, which he sought to impose in violation of prevailing feudal law and custom. This agreement was an important victory for property rights and not coincidentally the first step in the establishment of the rule of law (however imperfect) in Britain, and by extension, the English-speaking world.

In honor of the occasion, I offer an excerpt from my Libertarian Philosophy in the Real World: The Politics of Natural Rights (pp. 34-6), where I summarize and defend the libertarian case for stringent property rights. Continue Reading »