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.

Blog

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.

Forum

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.

Podcast

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 August 17, 2018

Righteous Indigenization

If we cannot trust the state with the care of vulnerable children, why should we trust it with the power to rewrite or erase our history?

Law & Liberty August 17, 2018

Teaching Grand Strategy with Great Books

John Lewis Gaddis reminds us that best minds of the past can illuminate the perennial challenges of politics and grand strategy.

Law & Liberty August 17, 2018

How Judicial Review Improves the Legislative Process

We normally think of judicial review of legislation as a zero-sum game, but it has unseen benefits.

Law & Liberty August 16, 2018

Confirmation Wars and Constitutional Authority, Part II

The Senate is free to process judicial nominations however its members so choose, and mental gymnastics are not required.

Law & Liberty August 16, 2018

Next to Millennials, the Generation X Slackers Were Renaissance Men

Young Americans’ submission to the blob-like takeover of everything by digital devices has produced a paradox: the millennials are fear-filled zombies.

Law & Liberty August 16, 2018

Restoring the Separation of Powers with M.J.C. Vile

M.J.C. Vile's Constitutionalism and the Separation of Powers tells the story of a political tradition largely lost in the west.

Law & Liberty August 16, 2018

The Ratification-Era Understanding of “High Crimes and Misdemeanors”

Nearly all of the historical evidence favors a broad, political view of the impeachment power.

Law & Liberty August 16, 2018

How Kavanaugh Should Respond to Senators’ Questions, Part II

Expect to see these questions and lines of attack at Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing, because senators often use them, regardless of the nominee.

Law & Liberty August 15, 2018

Liberalism as Armed Doctrine: A Conversation with Philip Hamburger

Philip Hamburger joins us to discuss his new book Liberal Suppression

Law & Liberty August 15, 2018

Confirmation Wars and Constitutional Authority, Part I

Senators should remember that the purpose of the confirmation process is not to confirm the president's nominee: it is to protect the judiciary.

Here are the 10 latest posts from Liberty Law Talk.

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.

Liberty Law Talk July 5, 2018

Galileo’s Trial: A Conversation with Dom Paschal Scotti

Dom Paschal Scotti discusses the facts, personalities, and ideas of the Galileo case.

Liberty Law Talk June 14, 2018

The Administrative State under Trump: A Conversation with Adam White

Adam White discusses President Trump's attempt to rein in regulatory state power.

Liberty Law Talk June 4, 2018

The Rivalry and Friendship of Jefferson and Adams: A Conversation with Gordon Wood

Gordon Wood discusses his book Friends Divided: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson

Liberty Law Talk May 15, 2018

“God Bless America” and Other Songs I Learned from Immigrants: A Conversation with Wilfred McClay

Wilfred McClay discusses our mixed patriotism.

Liberty Law Talk May 1, 2018

Freedom and American Higher Education: A Conversation with Keith Whittington

Keith Whittington makes the case for academic freedom.

Liberty Law Talk April 17, 2018

The Solid Ground of Mere Civility: A Conversation with Teresa Bejan

Teresa Bejan discusses with us how early modern debates over religious toleration are an example of how we can disagree well.

Liberty Law Talk April 2, 2018

Leading a Worthy Life in a Scattered Time: A Conversation with Leon Kass

Leon Kass discusses Leading a Worthy Life.

Here are the 10 latest posts from Liberty Law Forum.

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.

Liberty Law Forum January 2, 2018

The Price of Trump: Year One Reflections on an Unconventional Presidency

Reflections on a Year of President Trump

Liberty Law Forum November 1, 2017

What the Opioid Crisis Can Teach Us about the War on Drugs

America has seen a veritable explosion of serious drug abuse over the past two decades. In 1999, the year the Centers for Disease Control switched to a new system for tallying causes of death, Americans suffered fatal overdoses at a …

Liberty Law Forum October 2, 2017

The Madness of Saint Woodrow: Or, What If the United States Had Stayed out of the Great War?

What if the calamities of the 20th century really trace back to 1917 and the foolish American decision to join the Great War?

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