Explore Freedom

The intellectual heritage of classical liberalism and freedom is rich with brilliant authors, artists, economists, philosophers and thinkers. Freedom Fighters is a collection of some of the best and brightest contributors to our understanding of liberty.

Freedom Fighters

Ralph Waldo Emerson

In dealing with the State, we ought to remember that its institution are not aboriginal, though they existed before we were born: that they are not superior to the citizen: that every one of them was once the act of a single man: every law and usage was a man's expedient to meet a particular case: that they all ... [click for more]

Benjamin M. Anderson

Between the middle of 1922 and April 1928, without need, without justification, lightheartedly, irresponsibly, we expanded bank credit by more than twice as much (as during WWI), and in the years which followed we paid a terrible price. -- Benjamin M. Anderson, Economics and the Public Welfare Who Is Benjamin Anderson? by Mark Thornton Ludwig von Mises Institute [click for more]

Richard Henry Lee

That these united colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent states; that they are absolved from all alegiance to the British crown; and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, a ought to be, totally dissolved. -- Richard Henry Lee, Resolution moved at the Continental Congress [click for more]

Algernon Sidney

Who will wear a shoe that hurts him, because the shoemaker tells him it is well made? or who will live in a house that yields no defense against the extremities of weather, because the mason or carpenter assures him it is a very good house? Such as have reason, understanding, or common sense, will, and ought to make ... [click for more]

Albert J. Nock

It is an economic axiom as old as the hills that goods and services can be paid for only with goods and services. -- Albert J. Nock, Memoirs of a Superfluous Man Autobiographical Sketch by Albert J. Nock California Institute of Technology Nock on Education by Wendy McElroy Foundation for Economic Education The Genial Mr. Nock by Edmund ... [click for more]

Henry David Thoreau

There will never be a really free and enlightened State until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived, and treats him accordingly. I please myself with imagining a State at last which can afford to be just to all men, and to treat ... [click for more]

Knut Wicksell

On the other hand, it was remarked by Professor Edgeworth that if the free coinage of gold be suppressed, the Governments themselves have in their hand the regulating of general prices. This, too, is true, at any rate so long as the present large production of gold persists; and even if it should cease, and gold become scarce, the ... [click for more]

Jane Jacobs

... The other threat to the security of our tradition, I believe, lies at home. It is the current fear of radical ideas and of people who propound them. I do not agree with the extremists of either the left or the right, but I think they should be allowed to speak and to publish, both because they themselves ... [click for more]

Willis Van Devanter

Van Devanter was firmly opposed to increased governmental regulation of the economy. He interpreted the interstate commerce clause narrowly, thus limiting Congress's ability to regulate issues such as child labor or the use of yellow dog provisions in employment contracts. Additionally, Van Devanter favored an expansive interpretation of the due process clause of the 14th amendment, which thus restricted ... [click for more]

Samuel Adams

Let us contemplate our forefathers, and posterity, and resolve to maintain the rights bequeathed to us from the former, for the sake of the latter. The necessity of the times, more than ever, calls for our utmost circumspection, deliberation, fortitude and perseverance. Let us remember that "if we suffer tamely a lawless attack upon our liberty, we encourage it, ... [click for more]

Juan Bautista Alberdi

The Constitution is undoubtedly a precious thing but it is an idea not a fact, the seed not the tree of liberty. Liberty acquires body and life through the law, that is by the actions and executions of laws that establish what the Constitution only states or declares. -- Juan Bautista Alberdi Juan Bautista Alberdi Liberal-International.org Classical ... [click for more]

Frederic Bastiat

Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place. -- Frederic Bastiat Liberty's Greatest Advocate by Walter E. Williams Townhall Frederic Bastiat Foundation for Economic Education Meeting Frederic Bastiat by ... [click for more]

William Blackstone

Those rights, then, which God and nature have established, and are therefore called natural rights, such as life and liberty, need not the aid of human laws to be more effectually invested in every man than they are; neither do they receive any additional strength when declared by the municipal laws to be inviolate. On the contrary, no human ... [click for more]

Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk

A greater result is obtained by producing goods in round-about ways than by producing them directly . . . . That round-about methods lead to greater results than direct methods is one of the most important and fundamental propositions in the whole theory of production. -- Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk Biography of Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk by Roger W. Garrison Ludwig von ... [click for more]

R.W. Bradford

The libertarian movement is too decentralized, and libertarians themselves too ornery, for all of us to choose one path. But if we let a hundred flowers bloom, some of those blossoms may well to bring us closer to liberty. -- R.W. Bradford, Cutting the Gordian Knot A Life in Liberty: Bill Bradford Remembered (pages 18-41) Liberty Magazine 2006 ... [click for more]

John Bright

Force is no remedy -- John Bright, pertaining to troubles in Ireland John Bright Short Biography Spartacus Educational John Bright — British Politician Britannica John Bright 1811–1889 Library of Liberty John Bright: Voice of Victorian Liberalism by Nicholas Elliott Foundation for Economic Education [click for more]

James M. Buchanan

I am deeply concerned about the apparent apathy of citizens everywhere, about the absence of outrage at the sometimes petty intrusions of governments into our lives, about the failure to appreciate developing crises in welfare democracies. Most fundamentally, I am disturbed by an apparent public failure to appreciate and to understand the relationships between the constitutional structure that defines ... [click for more]

Pierce Butler

...a state may not, under the guise of protecting the public, arbitrarily interfere with private business or prohibit lawful occupations or impose unreasonable and unnecessary restrictions upon them. -- Supreme Court Justice Pierce Butler, Jay Burns Baking Co. v. Bryan Pierce Butler Short Biography Oyez.com Timeline of the Justices: Pierce Butler (1923-1929) Supreme Court Historical Society ... [click for more]

Richard Cantillon

Suppose the Butchers on one side and the Buyers on the other. The price of Meat will be settled after some altercations, and a pound of Beef will be in value to a piece of silver pretty nearly as the whole Beef offered for sale in the Market is to all the silver brought there to buy Beef. This proportion ... [click for more]

William Henry Chamberlin

The proliferation of bureaucrats and its invariable accompaniment, much heavier tax levies on the productive part of the population, are the recognizable signs, not of a great, but of a decaying society. Historians know that both phenomena were especially marked in the declining eras of the Roman Empire in the West and of its successor state, the Eastern or ... [click for more]