Public libertarian intellectuals

Consider the post-Hayek/Rothbard/Friedman era of libertarianism.

Who has stepped up to fill their shoes? It’s hard to say, but 4 academics who stand out are Tyler CowenMike MungerRobert Higgs, and Bryan Caplan. Their scholarly output is comparable to our own Jacques Delacroix, and their influence within the libertarian quadrant is – or was at some point in time – much greater than Jacques’.

All four of these scholars cut their teeth blogging. The blog is how they teach. The blog is how they vent. The blog is how they share news and knowledge. The blog is how they went from well-respected to essential. All four write opinion pieces for professional outlets, but that’s not how they became essential to libertarians across the globe. Sharing their day-to-day thoughts about the world, to the world (and not just their walled-off social media accounts), is how they were able to step up and usher libertarianism into the next generation.

As the new year approaches, I encourage you to think about what liberty means to you. (Is it best left in the hands of professional Libertarians? You know the incentives they face. You know the choices they’ve made.) I also encourage you to be bold in your goofiness. Be strange! Be strong. Be artsy. Be rude (but never cruel). The professional outlets will always be there, waiting patiently to edit out your voice from The Message. Make 2020 the year a new generation of libertarians stepped up and took on the burden of responsible citizen-scholarship.

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