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News Link • Philosophy: Libertarianism

Are Questions of War and Peace Merely One Issue among Many for Libertarians?

• By Robert Higgs for
Most Americans express support for private enterprise. Outright socialists are rare in this country, except on university campuses, and even progressives, who favor pervasive regulation and heavy taxation, often declare that they support a free-enterprise economy—they simply oppose “unbridled capitalism.” For many sincere friends of the free market, however, it shines as only one star among a host of others in their ideological firmament, and with regard to one critically important service—protection from foreign threats—they favor a government-monopoly supplier with an established reputation for recklessness and unnecessary ferocity. Thus, notable free enterprisers include both hawks (for example, Thomas Sowell, George Shultz, and Walter Williams) and doves (for example, Thomas Gale Moore, David Henderson, and Donald Boudreaux) in their views about U.S. foreign and military policy.

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