Libertarianism, properly understood, encompasses certain core functions as the proper role of government. It is not the libertarian view that government should be ineffective at protecting individual rights or dysfunctionally paralyzed in the face of a massive threat to people’s lives. Government has a role to play in responding to the pandemic in much the same way it is the government’s job to prosecute murderers or defend the country from invasion. At the same time, libertarian principles and insights can provide some guideposts for how to respond in this unprecedented global emergency.
Regardless of political commitments, we all want the world to be better. We want people everywhere to be healthier, happier, safer, and more prosperous than ever before. Political liberty—the freedom to live our lives as we want while affording others the right to do the same, free from the heavy hand of the state—is the best way to achieve that goal.Visions of Liberty is more than just an introduction to the broad scope of political liberty. It will leave you with a strong sense—a clear vision—of what the application of genuine libertarian policies looks like in practice. Available now everywhere, including as a free digital version.
Certain ideas dominate debate about the state of competition in the United States: that market shares for top firms are rising, that consumers and competitors are suffering, and that a lack of enforcement of antitrust laws is a key cause of these difficulties. Such a narrative, though, is highly challengeable. In a new paper, Cato scholar Ryan Bourne suggests that rising national concentration among industries may not be reflective of reduced competition in relevant markets or reflect harm to consumers’ welfare.