Essay on the Nature of Liberty in French


My address to the 60th meeting of the Liberal International has been translated into French. It will come out soon in German, as well.

English: Freedom Properly Understood

French: Bien comprendre la liberté

4 Responses to “Essay on the Nature of Liberty in French”

  1. Excellent address. I certainly learned from it.

    I attempted to defend Sen earlier, and will make one more half-hearted attempt. Sen is speaking entirely in terms of development econ — I see his comments as primarily an attack on the idea that development means developed countries giving poor countries capital or other aid. His taking to task of libertarians for too much concern for process is wrong, but he spends as much attacking those who think consequences (typically per capita income) are all that matter. He’s muddled as can be, but not sinister nor entirey wrong.

    I have no idea what he means by “lives they value and have reason to value,” but nothing I’ve read led me to think he meant anything other than goals people set for themselves. (He’s a dreadful writer, terribly wordy and redundant.) But keep in mind he took to task a field that essentially argued markets wouldn’t work for development because peasants are dumb & irrational.

    But I won’t press the issue beyond this.

    I would like very much to see this essay/talk expanded or supplemented with something on Leo Strauss. I’ve tangled with Straussians a time or two, and they are great proponents of freedom — but as nearly as I can tell, they believe that political thought *ended* with Plato’s Republic.

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