Robert Nozick's Anarchy, State, and Utopia is widely recognized as one of the most influential works of modern political philosophy. Libertarian Philosophy in the Real World not only provides a concise and accessible introduction to Nozick's ideal rights-based, minimal libertarian state, but for the first time applies this moral framework to America's liberal democracy.
Mark D. Friedman clearly presents Nozick's arguments for natural rights, showing that his theory undermines the very idea of social justice, and enables libertarians to rebut the most common objections to their doctrine. The book delivers a withering moral critique of the American welfare state, with chapters devoted to property rights, freedom of expression and association, paternalism, and the state's intervention in discrete aspects of modern life such as public education and healthcare. Friedman argues that reducing the liberal democratic state to its core functions would not produce the sort of moral catastrophe that might make us reconsider our commitment to individual rights. So, what is to be done? Friedman concludes with effective argumentative strategies for moving American politics in a more libertarian direction.
Ideal for undergraduates and above studying political philosophy, political science, political ideology, rights and public policy, this text provides crucial insights into libertarian theory and its application.
Mark D. Friedman is an independent scholar working in the field of political theory and ethics. He received a J.D. from Georgetown Law School, USA, with honors, and holds an MBA from Columbia University, USA. He is the author of Nozick's Libertarian Project: An Elaboration and Defense (Bloomsbury, 2011).
Preface Introduction 1. Natural Rights, the Minimal State, and Its Legitimate Functions 2. Property Rights, Eminent Domain, Regulatory Takings, and Zoning 3. Rights of Expression and Association 4. Paternalism 5. The Regulatory State 6. The Federal Income Tax and the Federal Reserve System 7. Corporate Welfare and the Welfare State 8. Public Education 9. Healthcare 10. Political Issues for Which There is No Doctrinaire Libertarian Position 11. What is to be Done? Notes List of Useful Internet Resources Bibliography Index