Sheldon Richman on Individualism, Collectivism, and Other Murky Labels

Imagine the following person. He believes all individuals should be free to do anything that’s peaceful and therefore favors private property, free global markets, freedom of contract, civil liberties, and all the related ideas that come under the label libertarianism (or liberalism). Obviously he is not a statist. But is he an individualist and a capitalist or a socialist and a collectivist?

It sounds like an easy question, writes Sheldon Richman, but on closer inspection it’s not.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Video Game Nation: How gaming is making America freer – and more fun.
  • Matt Welch: How the left turned against free speech.
  • Nothing Left to Cut? Congress can’t live within their means.
  • And much more.

SUBSCRIBE

advertisement