Political Economy in Half a Lesson

Source: EconLog
by Pierre Lemieux

“An objection to libertarianism and classical liberalism is that total individual autonomy does not exist: even on the market, I cannot do anything I want. So what’s all the fuss about individual liberty? This is an important question about liberal political economy. The short answer is that in a regime of equal individual liberty, you are constrained by the equal liberty of all other sovereign individuals, while in a regime of non-liberty, you are constrained by the will of some individuals (or by stifling tribal customs). To obtain this result, one needs first to recognize scarcity: resources, if only time, are limited and not everybody can have or do everything he wants.” (09/10/23)