Joseph Coberly, Rest In Peace

I’ve learned of the death of an old friend, Joseph E. Coberly, Jr., a long-time promoter of freedom and a man of principle and integrity. I met Joe many years ago, as a teenager, when I went to his office to ask for support for some libertarian activities. I was ushered into his office, where he (somewhat theatrically) was poring over a book by Ludwig von Mises. After five minutes or so, he looked up and acknowledged me. That was followed by a wide-ranging and memorable conversation about classical liberalism, socialism, statism, religion, and other topics.

Joe distinguished himself as the proprietor of Coberly Ford, a major Ford automobile dealership in southern California. In that capacity he regularly campaigned and testified before Congress against restrictions on imports by his competitors (at the time mainly from Japan), on the grounds that peole should be free to buy from whom they wanted. He was a principled free trader, not because it was in his interest, but because it was just.

Good bye, Joe. We need men and women like you. You will be missed, by the world, which will needs people like you, and by your friends, who admire you so.

3 Responses to “Joseph Coberly, Rest In Peace”

  1. Joe was a great guy. I spoke to him in the mid-1970’s on libertarian history. I quite enjoyed the experience, as he was very close to FEE (on the Board) and had a lot of connections with the Spiritual Mobe people and other libertarians in the Southern California area whom I didn’t have the opportunity to meet.

    He will be missed.
    Just a thought.
    Just Ken

  2. Kristie Coberly

    I married Pete Coberly in 1978, since then I have met many Coberlys. They originate I believe in Pasadena, L.A., area and Hermosa Beach (Ford) I met his grandsons or sons. I’m not sure. Do you have any info. on the Coberlys. We are in San Diego, and have spoken to the Coberlys in Rancho Santa Fe.

    Kristie Coberly