Political Theory

Libertarianism: For and Against by Duncan and Machan


What makes for free and responsible individuals and a healthy and viable free society? Ideas about the justice and efficacy of markets have been and continue to be criticized by those who assert the need to free individuals from the hardships of material and physical want. “Modern liberals'' seek the liberation of people from the harsher contingencies of life, whether poverty or ill health, contending that a humane society is both capable and obligated to assure a basic level of material well-being to all its members. Free market or classical liberals have long contended that this 1) places too much power in the hands of government, 2) detracts from the exercise and therefore the fostering of personal responsibility, and 3) retards the natural capacity of markets to overcome hardship through economic growth. This conference examined these arguments in detail through the excellent exchange of views by Tibor Machan and Craig Duncan in Libertarianism: For and Against


Conference Readings

Barnett, Randy E. The Structure of Liberty: Justice and the Rule of Law. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.

Duncan, Craig and Tibor Machan. Libertarianism: For and Against. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2005.