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February 4, 2010

Modern liberals probably wouldn’t give the time of day to a classical liberal

I tend to call myself a constitutionalist conservative, but my views on government and liberty align quite nicely with what was once known as liberalism.

"A [classical] liberal is fundamentally fearful of concentrated power. His objective is to preserve the maximum degree of freedom for each individual separately that is compatible with one man's freedom not interfering with other men's freedom. He believes that this objective requires that power be dispersed. He is suspicious of assigning to government any functions that can be performed through the market, both because this substitutes coercion for voluntary cooperation in the area in question and because, by giving government an increased role, it threatens freedom in other areas."

— Milton Friedman

Reference: Capitalism and Freedom (U. of Chicago Press, 1962), p. 39

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