You Come Home, Bill Evers? Won’t You Come Home?
by Walter Block: The
Libertarian Challenge to Charles Murray’s Position on Property Rights
When I first
entered the libertarian movement in 1962 I thought that our movement
would inexorably grow: after all, once a person was introduced to
this philosophy, he would never renounce it: libertarianism, I thought
then and still think now, it so true, so just, so beautiful
that no one could ever take it up and then put it down. So, all
we activists had to do was preach the good word, eventually everyone
would agree with the freedom philosophy, and peace and prosperity
would one day be ours.
Silly me. I
was young and foolish then. (It has now been 50 years; five sevenths
of my life has now been spent as a libertarian; I only wish I had
come to it sooner; I greatly regret the first 21 years of my life
spent apart from it.) There are people who not only were acquainted
with the case for free enterprise and private property rights, who
not only embraced it strongly, but even made important and even
vital contributions to it, who nevertheless spurned it. One such
is Williamson Evers. I would go so far as to say that at one time,
he was one of Murray Rothbard’s chief lieutenants. To show how far
down he has now slunk, here is an article
listing ex-libertarian Bill Evers as Romney appointee: "Mitt
Romney Announces Members of Education Policy Advisory Group".
But all is not lost. There is always hope. Bill, in the name of
what you once were, one of the foremost leaders of the entire libertarian
movement, I plead with you to give up the path you have taken, and
once again come join us in the fight for liberty. Tell Mitt that
until and unless he adopts the policies of Ron Paul and those of
your old mentor Murray Rothbard, you won’t have anything further
to do with him.
No one can
be all bad from a libertarian point of view who could write these
M. 1977. "Toward a reformulation of the law of contracts,"
The Journal of Libertarian Studies, Vol. 1, No. 1, Winter,
M. 1977. "Social contract:
a critique," The Journal of Libertarian Studies, Vol. 1,
No. 3, Summer, pp. 185-194
M. 1978. "The Law of Omissions
and Neglect of Children," The Journal of Libertarian Studies
Vol. 2, No. 1, pp. 1 – 10
M. 1978. "Rawls
and Children." The Journal of Libertarian Studies,
Vol. 2, No. 2, pp. 109-114
M. 1980. Specialization
and the Division of Labor In the Social Thought of Plato and Rousseau."
The Journal of Libertarian Studies, Vol. 4, No. 1, Winter,
brilliant contributions were all published in the early days of
the libertarian movement. They helped establish the Journal of
Libertarian Studies as THE place to be for libertarian scholarship.
I have just reread them, all of them, and they read as if they were
written yesterday, so fresh, alive and insightful are they. Bill
once made signal contributions to our movement, and can do so again,
if only he would. And once we land him again, there are plenty of
others out there: Dana Rohrabacher, Randy Barnett…
Block is thinking of starting up a series on reclaiming long lost
libertarians such as Bill Evers; if anyone has any suggestions,
please share them with him at [email protected].)
Block [send him mail] is a
professor of economics at Loyola University New Orleans, and a senior
fellow of the Ludwig von Mises Institute. He is the author of Defending
the Undefendable and Labor
Economics From A Free Market Perspective. His latest book
Privatization of Roads and Highways.
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