Law & Liberty

Law & Liberty focuses on the content, status, and development of law in the context of republican and limited government and the ways in which liberty and law mutually reinforce each other.

Law & Liberty brings together serious debate, commentary, essays, blog posts, podcast episodes, book reviews, interviews, and educational material in a commitment to the first principles of law in a free society. The site considers a range of foundational and contemporary legal issues, legal philosophy, and pedagogy.


The blog features timely commentary by John McGinnis, Mike Rappaport, and James Rogers and a host of other contributors on constitutional, legal, and policy issues.


The forum is a platform for the discussion of the legal and philosophical principles that inform and govern a free government and a free people. Recognizing that there is no shortage of online venues for evaluating legal questions, the forum's distinction rests in its examination of the basic principles of a constitutional republican order and its focus on the elements of freedom that must exist in a society dedicated to liberty and responsibility. The forum aims to uncover the genesis of central legal ideas that produced our unique heritage of Western liberty but are now misunderstood due to ideological confusion.

Every month, the forum presents an essay on a major topic by a leading thinker. This first essay’s ideas will then be considered and tested by two other participants in each exchange. The ideas discussed and debated in this space are not the sole preserve of experts, however. The hope is that each topic, and the ideas animating and surrounding it, will emerge into full view for the reader, permitting a new and refined understanding of the ideas discussed. These ideas are open to all: They are the personal and collective wisdom of any society devoted to the noblest ideas of the Western legal and political philosophical tradition.


The podcast features interviews with leading academics and writers on new books, articles, and contemporary subjects.

Book Reviews

This section contains reviews of significant new books in law, history, policy, and politics.

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Recent Posts

Here are the 10 latest posts from Law & Liberty.

Law & Liberty December 13, 2018

Let’s Save Liberal Education by Rethinking It

Why not consider the crafts and trades of vocational training, the performing arts, or the service professions part of the liberal arts?

Law & Liberty December 12, 2018

Two Cheers for Criminal Justice Reform

The so-called "First Step Act" offers some worthy reforms, but nothing that would satisfy progressive fantasies.

Law & Liberty December 12, 2018

How George H.W. Bush Gave Us Donald Trump

Bush never caught on to the fact that a growing number of Republican voters expected Republican politicians actually to change the rules.

Law & Liberty December 11, 2018

Civility and the Challenge of Ordered Liberty

The virtue of civility ebbs and flows in public life, but Stephen Carter gives us reasons to work to maintain it as a standard of good citizenship.

Law & Liberty December 10, 2018

Spinning Tales about the “Intelligence Cycle”

Sound intelligence about our adversaries is hard to come by—including in this book.

Law & Liberty December 10, 2018

Paris Is Burning

The present upheaval engulfing France reflects far deeper and unresolved tensions within.

Law & Liberty December 10, 2018

Paying the Piper May Not Justify Calling the Tune

Why do we accept the idea that the federal government can expansively regulate every aspect of the institutions they help fund?

Law & Liberty December 7, 2018

Amazon’s New Jack Ryan Portrays America’s New Weakness

The new Jack Ryan reflects how much has changed since the Cold War, and the result is an insightful mirror into American society.

Law & Liberty December 7, 2018

Is Justice Kavanaugh Grievously Wrong on Stare Decisis?

Justices Gorsuch and Kavanaugh seem to be diverging on essential questions for modern originalism.

Law & Liberty December 7, 2018

Is Justice Kavanaugh Grievously Wrong on Stare Decisis?

Justices Gorsuch and Kavanaugh seem to be diverging on essential questions for modern originalism.

Here are the 10 latest posts from Liberty Law Talk.

Liberty Law Talk December 3, 2018

The Sacred Rites of Humanity: A Conversation with Daniel Mahoney

Daniel Mahoney discusses his new book The Idol of Our Age and how humanitarianism corrupts politics and religion.

Liberty Law Talk November 15, 2018

The John Marshall Legacy: A Conversation with Richard Brookhiser

Richard Brookhiser discusses the life and jurisprudence of John Marshall.

Liberty Law Talk November 2, 2018

Andrew Jackson in Context: A Conversation with Bradley Birzer

Once considered one of our most consequential presidents, Andrew Jackson's reputation has now fallen on hard times.

Liberty Law Talk October 17, 2018

Hamilton, Madison, and American Oligarchy: A Conversation with Jay Cost

Jay Cost, author of The Price of Greatness, discusses the political and economic debates between Hamilton and Madison.

Liberty Law Talk October 3, 2018

Knowledge, Risk, and the Surprised Banker: A Conversation with Alex Pollock

Alex Pollock discusses the philosophy of finance and why the quant guys keep getting it wrong.

Liberty Law Talk September 18, 2018

Getting Right with Nationalism: A Conversation with Yoram Hazony

Yoram Hazony discusses why nationalism produces a politics of freedom, prosperity, and peace.

Liberty Law Talk September 4, 2018

The Peronist Pope Francis: A Conversation with Daniel Mahoney

Daniel Mahoney discusses Pope Francis's approach to the papacy and world politics.

Liberty Law Talk August 15, 2018

Liberalism as Armed Doctrine: A Conversation with Philip Hamburger

Philip Hamburger joins us to discuss his new book Liberal Suppression

Liberty Law Talk August 3, 2018

How Prosperity Is Improving the World of Work: A Conversation with John Tamny

John Tamny on the positive evolution of work under economic growth.

Liberty Law Talk July 16, 2018

Is Relativism the Best Constitutional Defense of Free Speech? A Conversation with Hadley Arkes

Hadley Arkes discusses the rights and duties of freedom of speech.

Here are the 10 latest posts from Liberty Law Forum.

Liberty Law Forum November 1, 2018

Administrative Law Is Bunk. We Need a Bundesverwaltungsgericht

Only a new Administrative Judiciary can tame the regulatory state and vindicate the rights of citizens when they get pushed around by a government agency.

Liberty Law Forum October 1, 2018

Reforming U.S. Environmental Policy

Start with two big obstacles to good policymaking on the environment: federal review under NEPA, and undue judicial deference to the executive branch.

Liberty Law Forum September 4, 2018

The Frivolous Valley and Its Dreadful Conformity

Silicon Valley, with soil so fertile that anything could grow there, now grows a hierarchy of techies seeking money, fame, power, sex, and adulation.

Liberty Law Forum August 1, 2018

Restoring Localism

Freeing localities from federal control appeals to the Left at the moment. Right and Left could make a strategic alliance to foment a decentralist rebellion.

Liberty Law Forum July 2, 2018

Desire or Dominance?: Sexual Harassment’s Legal Maze

The discrimination approach doesn’t give us adequate tools for managing real differences between the sexes.

Liberty Law Forum June 1, 2018

Between a Mirage and a Mistake: Correcting American Grand Strategy

We should keep in mind our interests and our allies. Doing so brings home to us the paradox of strategic thinking: to secure peace, prepare for war.

Liberty Law Forum May 1, 2018

France’s Psychodrama of 1968

Those who loathe and those who celebrate May 1968 agree it was a defining moment for Western democracy in its late modern form.

Liberty Law Forum April 2, 2018

The Legal Turn

We argue that the U.S. Constitution was written in the language of the law, and that treating it as a legal document strengthens originalism.

Liberty Law Forum March 1, 2018

Can Libertarianism Be a Governing Philosophy?

Any policy change that lessens government control over private action is desirable; libertarians are crucial to any intellectual push in that direction.

Liberty Law Forum February 1, 2018

What Worlds Have They to Conquer?: A Higher Ed Dystopia

“Are ye with us or agin’ us?” is what the Grand Axis demanded to know.

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