James's Liberty file collection index
This is a collection of files related to liberty, the right to
bear arms, and the like. It contains mostly ancient philosophy
rather than fast breaking news. The issues discussed here have
been discussed for centuries or millennia, and the newest facts
and newest arguments on these issues are mostly few decades
Collected, edited, and sometimes written by firstname.lastname@example.org
Some other sites
relevant to liberty
- Some funny, some profound, many both profound and funny. By
the famous, the infamous, and the obscure.
- Natural Law and
- An explanation of natural law and natural rights. Most of
the old literature on natural law and natural rights, notably
the writings of John Locke, has become incomprehensible because
we no longer have the background knowledge of natural law that
those writers assumed.
This article makes the concept of natural law intelligible to
- “Natural Law” by
Spooner makes the natural law argument in favor of
“[...] it is the right of anybody and everybody – of any
one man, or set of men, no less than another – to repel
injustice, and compel justice, for themselves, and for all
who may be wronged, [...]”
- John Locke's
Second Treatise on Civil Government.
- John Locke's writings were a call to arms, an assertion of
the right and duty to forcibly and violently remove
illegitimate rulers and their servants. (1690) (Big file,
- Letter concerning
John Locke argues that religious persecution is not caused by
differing concepts of the good, but by simple old fashioned
evil – one group seeks power and wealth by using organized
violence to rob and subjugate another group, same as any
other group conflict. (1689) (Big file, 118,316 bytes)
“If anyone maintain that men ought to be compelled by
fire and sword to profess certain doctrines [...] it cannot
be doubted indeed but such a one is desirous to have a
numerous assembly joined in the same profession with
himself; but that he principally intends by those means to
compose a truly Christian Church is altogether
- Locke versus
- A short
demonstration that morality is objectively knowable.
- Most of the time, we can objectively determine right and
wrong, near enough to be useful. We are not ultimately
dependent on authority and upbringing.
- Chapters 3 4 and
5 of “The descent of man”
Charles Darwin argues that a social animal must inevitably
develop a moral sense, as it develops intelligence.
Sir B. Brodie, after observing that man is a social
animal (Psychological Inquiries, 1854, p. 192), asks the
pregnant question, “Ought not this to settle the disputed
question as to the existence of a moral sense?” Similar
ideas have probably occurred to many persons, as they did
long ago to Marcus Aurelius.
Good and Evil from self interest, explained by Constant
by Frederick Bastiat
A vigorous defense of the rule of law, and a demonstration
that socialism must inevitably become communism. (1850)
“What, then, is law? It is the collective organization
of the individual right to lawful defense.
Each of us has a natural right [...] to defend his
person, his liberty, and his property. [...]
[...] Thus, since an individual cannot lawfully use
force against the person, liberty, or property of another
individual, then the common force – for the same reason –
cannot lawfully be used to destroy the person, liberty, or
property of individuals or groups.”
- “That Which is Seen,
and that Which is Not Seen” by Frederick Bastiat
Bastiat exposes numerous economic fallacies that are still
widely argued today, that automation and layoffs are bad,
that government spending is good for business, that
protectionism benefits the economy, and so forth. This
contains the famous and often quoted “Fallacy of the Broken
Window”, the fallacy still so often used to justify
destructive and hurtful government policies.
we must assent to a maxim which will make the hair of
protectionists stand on end -To break, to spoil, to waste,
is not to encourage national labor; nor, more briefly,
“destruction is not profit.”
- Taxes and economic
- In the United States since 1950 average growth during high
tax periods was 1.08%, average growth during normal times was
2.45%. Every high tax period was a long period of economic
stagnation, malaise, or decline or else contained a long period
of decline. Such events were rare during normal tax periods.
“Voodoo economics” works in the sense that tax cuts are apt to
produce a substantial rise in government revenues after a
- The Internet:
Killer Virus of the State
- How the Internet will transform, is transforming,
- How law is created through private arrangements, rather
than by the limitless coercive power of the state.
Capitalism. A short summary.
- Drug Peace
Before the war on drugs.
- United States
Declaration of Independence.
- US Bill of
- A parody of the
US Bill of Rights.
- United States
- Parody of the
proposed US identity card.
- Articles by some of the founding fathers. Provides the
context that you sometimes need to understand what some
sections of the constitution were intended to mean.
- French declaration
of the rights of man.
- Had this declaration been observed, France would have had a
constitution like Americas early constitution, based on popular
sovereignty limited by natural law and natural rights. Instead
they wound up with a constitution based on the limitless and
absolute majoritarian popular sovereignty of Rousseau, leading
inevitably to the great terror.
- Why Aristotle is
Politics. (Big file, 514,513 bytes)
Anatomy of Modern “African Capitalist States”
- Politics and economy in postcolonial Africa.
- A Nation of
- A powerful and factual argument for the right to keep and
- Horrors! Maybe the
Schools are Working Just Fine
- The Magna
- The Magna Carta defined the rights of nobles in 1215. These
rights were soon asserted by the middle class, then by all free
men. In 1557 the King restrained the nobles from infringing on
the right of serfs to keep and bear armor piercing weapons. Who
today will protect our rights to such weapons?
- Ayn Rand on
- Extract from Ayn Rand's “Atlas Shrugged”: Money is the
basis of moral and free relationships. The alternative to money
is coercion. Virtue is the root of all money.
socialism needs killing fields
- “What are you talking about? Giving people what they need
doesn't require terror!”
“Who decides need?”
“It's pretty apparent to me!”
- The Road To
- A condensation and summary of Hayek's great work exposing
the fallacy of central planning.
- Confessions of an
- The universities
- Sophal Ear (who lost two of his immediate family members in
the Cambodian holocaust) reviews academic rationalizations,
justifications, excuses, and deceptions concerning this
- If Chomsky actually believed what he seeks to pursuade the
reader is true, he would not employ phrasing carefully and
elaborately designed to cover his rear.
- What Freedom is
- PJ O'Rourke defends the word “freedom” against those who
would destroy the meaning of the word.
really happened in Catalonia.
- Those who seek to create a society of brutal extremes of
power have lied about this event, just as they lied about
Russia, about China, about Cuba, and about Cambodia.
- Repression in
the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
- No Treason: The
Constitution of No Authority.
- By Lysander Spooner. Argues that the Federal Government was
not entirely legitimate after the revolution, and became
seriously unlawful when it gave itself vastly greater powers
during and after the civil war.
- The earliest
statement of the anarcho capitalist position
- In 1849, Gustav de Molinari argued on economic grounds for
“Free Government” and “Free Self Defense”, by which he meant
“free” as in “free speech” — the right of any individual or
group to see to their own government and their own self