Conservative Critique of Libertarianism

Libertarianism and conservatism are frequently classified together as right-wing political philosophies, which is understandable given the content and history of these views. Both philosophies are hostile to the egalitarianism that has motivated socialists and modern liberals and to the statism with which egalitarians have sought to implement their program. Edmund Burke, the father of modern conservatism, was a Whig who sympathized with Adam Smith's economics, whereas John Locke, the intellectual ancestor of natural rights libertarians such as Robert Nozick and Murray Rothbard, gave his own doctrine of natural rights a theological foundation. Conservatives in the Anglo-American tradition have generally tended to follow Burke in endorsing the free market, and belief in Lockean natural rights has often been associated with the sort of religious worldview that ...

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