The importance of the rule of law is hard to overstate. It defines those societies not governed by the whims of central authorities. Tom Palmer — Cato Institute Senior Fellow and General Director of the Atlas Global Initiative for Free Trade, Peace, and Prosperity — believes that promoting liberty and the rule of law means discovering that tradition in cultures around the world. He explores these themes in his new book, Realizing Freedom: Libertarian Theory, History and Practice. He spoke at the Cato Institute December 1, 2009.