Liberty Fund

Liberty Fund was founded in 1960 by Pierre F. Goodrich, an Indianapolis lawyer and businessman, to the end that some hopeful contribution may be made to the preservation, restoration, and development of individual liberty through investigation, research, and educational activity.


Great books are the repository of knowledge and experience. Liberty Fund seeks to preserve the wisdom and learning of the ages and to strengthen our understanding and appreciation of individual liberty and responsibility.

For over four decades, Liberty Fund has made available some of the finest books in history, politics, philosophy, law, education, and economics—books of enduring value that have helped to shape ideas and events in man’s quest for liberty, order, and justice.

Featured Book The Meditations of the Emperor Marcus Aurelius Antoninus

Translated by Francis Hutcheson and James Moor
Edited and with an Introduction by James Moore and Michael Silverthorne

This 1742 translation is a collaborative work by Francis Hutcheson and a colleague at Glasgow University, the classicist James Moor. Although Hutcheson was secretive about the extent of his work on the book, he was clearly the leading spirit of the project.


The Meditations of the Emperor Marcus Aurelius Antoninus

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These resources are designed to further Liberty Fund’s educational activities. They include classic works in the tradition of limited government, as well as lively current discussions of how classical-liberal principles apply in today’s world.

EconTalk December 10, 2017

John Cogan on Entitlements and the High Cost of Good Intentions

High%20Cost.jpgJohn Cogan of Stanford University's Hoover Institution talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about Cogan's book, The High Cost of Good Intentions, a history of U.S. entitlement policy. Cogan traces the evolution of government pensions beginning with Revolutionary War vets to the birth and evolution of the Social Security program. Surprises along the way include President Franklin Roosevelt as fiscal conservative and the hard-to-believe but true fact that there is still one person receiving monthly checks from the Civil War veterans pension program. The conversation concludes with Cogan's concerns over the growing costs of financing social security payments to baby boomers.


Time: 1:06:08

Liberty Review December 11, 2017

Socialized View of Man vs. Rational Choice Theory: What Does Smith’s Sympathy Have to Say?

JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC BEHAVIOR & ORGANIZATION ELIAS L. KHALIL Abstract: To explain the anomaly of cooperation in finitely repeated games, some economists advance a socialized view of man as an antidote to rational choice theory. This paper confronts these economists insofar as they trace the socialized view to Smith’s theory of sympathy in The Theory of Moral […]

Law & Liberty December 11, 2017

A Polarized Country Is the Political Norm

The increase in political polarization in this country reflects the decreasing sectional attachments that rose from the Civil War.

OLL | Quotations September 6, 2009

James Mill on the natural disposition to accumulate property (1808).

James Mill

OLL November 21, 2011

Some Aspects of the Tariff Question (Frank William Taussig)

tariff.chartSome Aspects of the Tariff Question (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1915).

Law & Liberty December 11, 2017

Half a Worm

Tim Cook leads the tech industry's participation in assisting China's internet surveillance of its own citizens.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books November 21, 2011

The American Republic: Primary Sources (Bruce Frohnen)

American RepublicThe American Republic is an excellent textbook for classroom use which provides, in a single volume, critical, original documents revealing the character of American discourse on the nature and importance of local government, the purposes of federal union, and the role of religion and tradition in forming America’s drive for liberty.

OLL | Quotations September 13, 2009

Samuel Smiles on how an idle, thriftless, or drunken man can, and should, improve himself through self-help and not by means of the state (1859).

Samuel Smiles

EconLog December 10, 2017

What if I didn't favor NGDP targeting?, by Scott Sumner

For the past nine years I've been promoting market monetarist ideas in the blogosphere. How important is NGDP targeting to the MM agenda? Much less important than many people assume.

Kurt Schuler left the following comment in response to my previous post:

Nominal GDP targeting has not yet been implemented anywhere. Accordingly, you have the luxury of comparing an untested policy whose defects (if any) have not yet been revealed in practice with well-tested policies whose defects are a matter of record. Advocates of inflation targeting were in the same position when it was first widely discussed. Then it was implemented, and after some years of apparent success came the Great Recession. If you are plan to advocate nominal GDP targeting in your book, you should specify what results (if any) would lead you to revise your favorable opinion of it.Let's suppose I switched my view away from NGDP targeting, and moved toward the Fed's current "dual mandate" approach, which aims at 2% inflation and high employment. What then? How much would change?

OLL | Liberty Matters November 1, 2017

Peter Boettke, "Gordon Tullock and the Rational Choice Commitment" (November, 2017)

Liberty MattersThis month's discussion looks at the work of the political economist Gordon Tullock who saw himself very much in the tradition of Mises – a praxeologist who from a methodologically individualistic perspective would study human action across all social arrangements.  Tullock's subject matter was humanity in all settings, and that included not just markets, but non-market settings such as law, politics, and charity.  Along the way he made fundamental contributions to the theory of bureaucracy, constitutional construction, judicial decision-making, voting behavior, lobbying, scientific organization, redistribution, and even sociobiology. The Lead Essay is by Peter J. Boettke, University Professor of Economics and Philosophy at George Mason University, and he is joined by Peter Kurril-Klitgard, Professor of Political Theory and Comparative Politics at the Dept. of Political Science of the University of Copenhagen, David M. Levy, Professor of Economics at George Mason University, and Michael Munger, director of the PPE Program at Duke University and professor of political science, economics, and public policy.

See the Archive of "Liberty Matters".

OLL November 21, 2011

Illustrations of Political Economy, vol. 3 (Harriet Martineau)

Illustrations of Political Economy (3rd ed) in 9 vols. (London: Charles Fox, 1832). Vol. 3.

Liberty Review December 4, 2017

Ludwig Lachmann’s peculiar status within Austrian economics

VIRGIL HENRY STORR THE REVIEW OF AUSTRIAN ECONOMICS Abstract: Lachmann occupies a strange position within modern Austrian economics. He is viewed as something of an outsider and his views are often regarded as outside the mainline of modern Austrian thought. But, on several key issues – especially subjectivism and institutions – Lachmann’s positions are the dominant […]

Law & Liberty December 11, 2017

A Partial Vindication of Thomas West

We are better off reviving natural rights as a useful explanation for some of our constitutional virtues, but to counteract the crisis of modernity we need to explore other explanations of our Constitution.

Liberty Review February 13, 2017

Mapping Religious Change in Latin America

NICOLÁS M. SOMMA, MATÍAS A. BARGSTED, & EDUARDO VALENZUELA LATIN AMERICAN POLITICS AND SOCIETY, Volume 59, Issue 1 Abstract: Using Latinobarometer survey data, we study the evolution of religious identities among the adult populations of 17 Latin American countries between 1996 and 2013. We find several interesting patterns. First, the current religious landscape is highly dynamic […]

Law & Liberty December 8, 2017

Two Very Wrong Perspectives on Masterpiece Cakeshop

Subordinating the speech rights of those in commerce to a social movement overlooks the core principle of free speech.

OLL November 21, 2011

Liberty of the Press (1825) (James Mill)

“Liberty of the Press” in Supplement to the Encyclopedia Britannica (London: J. Innes, 1825).

OLL | Images of Liberty April 12, 2016

New Playing Cards for the French Republic (1793-94)



The Spirit of Peace | Motto: "Prosperity"
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The Spirit of Commerce | Motto: "Wealth"
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OLL | Quotations September 20, 2009

Charles Darwin on life as a spontaneous order which emerged by the operation of natural laws (1859)


Liberty Review February 11, 2017

Classical Liberalism in Italian Economic Thought, from the Time of Unification

ALBERTO MINGARDI ECON JOURNAL WATCH, Volume 14, Issue 1 Abstract: Although classical liberalism has not had a profound impact on political institutions in Italy since its unification in the 1860s, the country had a vibrant classical liberal tradition, especially among economists. The Italian scuola di scienza delle finanze played a key role in anticipating the approach […]