Excursions into Libertarian Thought

Cato Institute

George H. Smith explores the history of libertarian ideas. Narrated by Daniel Hyland.

14:20 | Jul 25th, 2018

George Smith discusses Kant’s attempt to justify objective moral principles and his views on when the use of coercion is morally proper.

16:12 | Jul 18th, 2018

George Smith explains some fundamental features of Immanuel Kant’s moral and political theory.
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11:55 | Jul 11th, 2018

George Smith discusses some good and bad influences that Ayn Rand’s ideas had on his own intellectual development.

13:38 | Jul 4th, 2018

George Smith examines some of Rand’s claims about the beneficial influence of Aristotle’s ideas on the course of Western civilization.

15:45 | Jun 27th, 2018

George Smith discusses the issue of whether we should hold a philosopher responsible for the beliefs of those followers who agree with him.

16:56 | Jun 20th, 2018

George Smith explains the views of Kant and Hegel on the history of philosophy, and explores whether moral judgments should be applied to the realm of ideas.

12:02 | Jun 6th, 2018

Was Kant somehow responsible for the rise of Nazism? Smith explores two points of view on this issue.

12:51 | May 30th, 2018

George H. Smith discusses the mythological thinking that dominated Nazi ideology, as explained in Cassirer’s book The Myth of the State.

12:14 | May 24th, 2018

George Smith discusses whether we should hold a philosopher responsible for how other philosophers use his or her ideas.

12:11 | May 23rd, 2018

George H. Smith explores Rand’s contention that America was sliding down a slippery slope to fascism.

17:38 | May 16th, 2018

Smith examines and criticizes Richard Ashcraft’s arguments that Locke was significantly influenced by the Levellers.

13:36 | May 9th, 2018

George H. Smith explains an important controversy about when the Two Treatises was written and the influence of the Levellers on Locke.

11:09 | May 2nd, 2018

George H. Smith explains the significance, for Locke, of the increased productivity caused by labor, and the relationship between money and property.

11:11 | Apr 25th, 2018

George H. Smith explains how Locke dealt with some problems in the traditional Christian theory of private property.

13:11 | Apr 18th, 2018

George H. Smith discusses Robert Nozick’s criticisms of Locke’s property theory.

12:18 | Apr 11th, 2018

George H. Smith explains Locke’s ideas on how we should interpret a philosophic text, and the relationship between labor and private property.

10:01 | Apr 4th, 2018

In his first essay in a new series on John Locke, Smith explains some essential features of Locke’s case for private property.

10:48 | Mar 28th, 2018

George Smith discusses Locke’s view of the original commons, before the institution of private property.

13:27 | Mar 21st, 2018

George Smith continues his discussion of how the theory of private property changed over the centuries.

14:20 | Mar 14th, 2018

Smith contrasts the modern secular approach to private property with the traditional Christian theory.

14:59 | Mar 7th, 2018

Does the modern libertarian movement have any significant similarities to the early Christian movement? Smith explores this intriguing possibility.

10:34 | Feb 28th, 2018

George H. Smith discusses the traditional Christian theory of private property and how it was viewed as the result of original sin.

12:44 | Feb 21st, 2018

Was Jean Meslier a communist? George H. Smith explores this tricky issue.

12:15 | Feb 14th, 2018

George H. Smith critically examines the claim that Jean Meslier was a communist anarchist.

09:41 | Feb 7th, 2018

George H. Smith explains Jean Meslier’s three major objections to Christian morality, as taught by Jesus.

13:32 | Jan 31st, 2018

George H. Smith explains the role of the Catholic Church in the French government, and how Jean Meslier reconciled his atheism with his role as a priest.

14:53 | Jan 24th, 2018

George H. Smith explains some of the libertarian ideas of Jean Meslier, the notorious atheist-priest.

12:43 | Jan 17th, 2018

George H. Smith criticizes some features of Benedict Spinoza’s political theory, especially his theory of rights.

12:40 | Jan 10th, 2018

George H. Smith explains the fundamentals of Benedict Spinoza’s theory of rights and government.

12:08 | Jan 3rd, 2018

George H. Smith continues his discussion of Benedict Spinoza by explaining how he defended freedom of religion and speech.