Mondays with Murray: Rothbard on SecessionSubmitted by Marc Clair on Mon, 12/03/2012 - 12:02
The topic of secession has been all the rage lately after residents of all 50 states filed petitions online to secede from the United States after the election of President Obama. Let’s try and put aside the irony of “petitioning” to secede as well as the seemingly irrational partisan nature of the petitions. Do these people believe a Romney administration would really have delivered such blossoming freedom that it would make the difference for anyone on whether they want to be a part of the U.S. or not? Nonetheless, the idea of secession is certainly one worth discussing. After all, The United States was founded when the original 13 seceded from England by declaring their independence from King George.
What better time than another edition of Mondays with Murray to see what the great libertarian thinker and scholar Murray Rothbard had to say on the subject. Perhaps this edition should be subtitled Mondays with Mises, as Murray actually discusses Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises’ views on secession. I particularly enjoy Rothbard’s portrayal of von Mises as a “flaming anti-imperialist”.
This is a good example of how Austrian economics intersects with the ideas of libertarianism. While the former is a social science and the latter is a philosophy, they logically overlap in many ways. Austrian economics essentially advocates 100% free markets and voluntary exchange as the best creator of prosperity in a society. Libertarianism arrives at the same conclusion through the non-aggression principle, the idea that all human interactions should be voluntary, not coerced through violence or the threat of violence.