Libertarians in the U.S. have no shortage of bad and worrying developments to rail against; wars abroad, irresponsible government spending, the war on drugs, and the erosion of civil liberties. But American libertarians are not struggling against the state all by themselves. There are libertarians everywhere, including in countries that do not have comparatively free speech, a culture sympathetic to markets or liberty, or our access to resources. Here are a few global freedom-fighters worth keeping an eye on.
1. Steve Baker MP: The U.K.
Since the formation of the coalition government in 2010, Britain has been one of the anti-austerity movement’s favorite examples of how austerity does not work. Although the British Conservative-led government says that it is engaging in cuts the fact is that austerity has yet to be realized. In light of the financial crisis the British government has engaged in pro-regulation rhetoric. For many British libertarians, the House of Commons is a place where few friends can be found. However, Member of Parliament Steve Baker is a welcome exception to this trend.
Baker is a conservative disciple of the Austrian school of economics. Before entering politics Baker worked as an Engineer Officer in the Royal Air Force and in consulting. He also co-founded the Cobden Centre, which has as its vision statement:
Our vision is of a peaceful, open and free society based on a stable, sustainable economy in which everyone has the opportunity to participate in constantly growing real prosperity.
Baker was introduced to the Austrian business cycle theory after the dotcom crash. He outlined his ideological journey in an interview conducted shortly after being elected.
In the U.K. calls for strong state solutions to government-created problems are tragically more common than they are in the U.S. While much of the news coming out of the U.K. is often depressing, to those who believe in limited government it is reassuring to know there is at least one Member of Parliament who understands the moral and economic superiority of free markets over state control.
RT interviewed Steve Baker on the financial crisis and banking, watch below: