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Liberalism - Digital Book

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This is Mises's classic statement in defense of a free society, one of the last statements of the old liberal school and a text from which we can continue to learn.
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This professionally prepared ebook is an electronic edition of the book that is designed for reading on digital readers like Nook, Kindle, iPad, Sony Reader, and other products including iPhone and Android smart phones. The text reflows depending on your font preferences and it contains links from navigation.

LvMI edition with foreword by Thomas Woods

This is Mises's classic statement in defense of a free society, one of the last statements of the old liberal school and a text from which we can continue to learn. It has been the conscience of a global movement for liberty for 80 years. This edition, from the Mises Institute, features a foreword by Thomas Woods.

It first appeared in 1927, as a followup to both his devastating 1922 book showing that socialism would fail, and his 1926 book on interventionism.

It was written to address the burning question: if not socialism, and if not fascism or interventionism, what form of social arrangements are most conducive to human flourishing? Mises's answer is summed up in the title, by which he meant classical liberalism.

Mises did more than restate classical doctrine. He gave a thoroughly modern defense of freedom, one that corrected the errors of the old liberal school by rooting the idea of liberty in the institution of private property (a subject on which the classical school was sometimes unclear). Here is the grand contribution of this volume.

"The program of liberalism, therefore, if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property, that is, private ownership of the means of production... All the other demands of liberalism result from this fundamental demand."

But there are other insights too. He shows that political decentralization and secession are the best means to peace and political liberty. As for religion, he recommends the complete separation of church and state. On immigration, he favors the freedom of movement. On culture, he praised the political virtue of tolerance. On education: state involvement must end, and completely.

He deals frankly with the nationalities problem, and provides a stirring defense of rationalism as the essential foundation of liberal political order. He discusses political strategy, and the relationship of liberalism to special-interest politics.

In some ways, this is the most political of Mises's treatises, and also one of the most inspiring books ever written on the idea of liberty. It remains the book that can set the world on fire for freedom, which is probably why it has been translated into more than a dozen languages.


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Preface to the English-Language Edition


1. Liberalism

2. Material Welfare

3. Rationalism

4. The Aim of Liberalism

5. Liberalism and Capitalism

6. The Psychological Roots of Antiliberalism

1. The Foundations of Liberal Policy

1. Property

2. Freedom

3. Peace

4. Equality

5. The Inequality of Wealth and Income

6. Private Property and Ethics

7. State and Government

8. Democracy

9. Critique of the Doctrine of Force

10. The Argument of Fascism

11. The Limits of Governmental Activity

12. Tolerance

13. The State and Antisocial Conduct

2. Liberal Economic Policy

1. The Organization of the Economy

2. Private Property and Its Critics

3. Private Property and the Government

4. The Impracticability of Socialism

5. Interventionism

6. Capitalism: The Only Possible System of Social Organization

7. Cartels, Monopolies, and Liberalism

8. Bureaucratization

3. Liberal Foreign Policy

1. The Boundaries of the State

2. The Right of Self-Determination

3. The Political Foundations of Peace

4. Nationalism

5. Imperialism

6. Colonial Policy

7. Free Trade

8. Freedom of Movement

9. The United States of Europe

10. The League of Nations

11. Russia

4. Liberalism and the Political Parties

1. The “Doctrinairism” of the Liberals

2. Political Parties

3. The Crisis of Parliamentarism and the Idea of a Diet Representing Special Groups

4. Liberalism and the Parties of Special Interests

5. Party Propaganda and Party Organization

6. Liberalism as the “Party of Capital”

5. The Future of Liberalism


1. On the Literature of Liberalism

2. On the Term “Liberalism”


ISBN 9781933550848
eISBN 9781610164085
Publisher Ludwig von Mises Institute
Publication Date [1927] 2010
Page Length 207

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