I believe libertarians can make a strong claim for occupying the moral high ground on many issues. Opponents often argue against freedom by claiming that only the rich and powerful will benefit. Quite the opposite is true. I’m going to start a list of examples starting with:
- An article by Jagdish Bhagwati who argues that free trade helps the poor. (HT Don Boudreaux)
- I wrote a post on the morality of profit including a discussion of Sheldon Richman’s post on the same topic.
- The Atlas Network has a whole project on the Morality of Free Enterprise.
- The John Templeton Foundation has a conversation among several notable authors titled “Does the free market corrode moral character?”
- Steven Horwitz in The Other Principle of Classical Liberalism argues that “classical-liberal principles require the State to treat all citizens as equal before the law.” If only we could get all of government adhering to that principal we would have a much more equitable and efficient system. Horwitz discusses the specific case of gay marriage and the lengthy commentary on his blog illustrate the issues and difficulties involved.
- Tim Nerenz argues eloquently that “You can’t be for the poor and against the things that end poverty” and provides a lengthy list of examples of this common contradiction in public discourse.