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 his fundamental demand.

Via the Ludwig von Mises Institute.

Over lunch today, I very much enjoyed setting out the Austrian School programme of classical liberalism advanced by Mises to the Freedom Association. These days, it would be known as Conservatism, but there we are.

Sooner or later, politics will have to reorientate towards either freedom or state control. I believe the journey began with this election, but much hinges on the Liberal Democrats and whether they are in fact believers in liberty…


  1. I used to be a Young Liberal many years ago and remember Jo Grimmond quite well. Grimmond stressed the importance of the freedom of the individual. The current Liberal Democrats are so far removed from seeing the value of this notion as to be resident on some other planet – preferring instead the attractions on socialism and central state control. The heart of this problem, in my view, lies in the current generations of influence. In the 1960s, the young people of the time demanded freedom but were unable to handle it. Subsequent to their original demands they then underwent a counter revolution and produced the nanny state.

    My parents used to say that my generation would turn out to be far more puritanical than theirs ever had been. How right they turned out to be.

  2. Thanks Steve, but I wonder if you would be so kind, please, as in insider, to explain what indicators you have witnessed which may support your hope that the LibDems are about to begin their journey back to liberalism proper.

    As it happens, I have in my possession an irate letter from Cyril Smith at the time of the Alliance, stating that he was concerned that liberalism should survive. I really understand his concerns with regard to the Alliance, today, far better than I did at the time.