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Privacy

The term privacy has a wide range of connotations for libertarians as for scholars generally. In a broad sense, privacy refers to the condition obtained when one's intimate or personal life is inviolate. In political discourse, libertarians argue, as did the classical liberal theorists who preceded them, that one's personal life is bounded by property or contract rights. As with other liberties, libertarians are particularly concerned about the government's singular powers to violate privacy rights, particularly through the use of its police powers. Although a private actor might invade a person's privacy, libertarian analysis generally treats most such instances as trespasses, whereas the surveillance of workers by their employers is treated under contract law. Thus, for most libertarians, privacy refers to rights threatened by ...

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