From the point of view of the average businessman, the New Deal launched America on the path of “creeping socialism.” By the mid-1950’s over one hundred “business sponsored” organizations opposing the New Deal’s political philosophy of interventionism began to appear. Many welcomed the name “libertarian” to distinguish themselves from the political liberals who accepted Big Government as a necessary instrument of social progress.

Although differing on many points, libertarians have, since their beginning, shared one common apprehension: the steady growth of government and the corresponding decline of individual responsibility and freedom. They have been driven by a very real fear, the fear that a government which controls the economic life of its citizens today will control their thoughts and souls tomorrow. To the libertarians, the “democratic process,” which many trust as an adequate safeguard against tyranny, supplies no sufficient guarantee against a tyrannical majority. They have read American history and know that the architects of our Constitutional system, who were aware of the danger of tyranny by the majority, tried to prevent it by specific checks which later political developments either weakened or destroyed.

Libertarianism And Religion

Three libertarian organizations that have had the most to do with the religious community have been the Foundation for Economic Education, Irvington-on-Hudson, New York; Spiritual Mobilization, Los Angeles; and the Christian Freedom Foundation, New York City.

All three organizations have been anti-statist but hardly anarchistic. (Professor Russell Kirk, author of The Conservative Mind, is the leader of another faction which prefers to call itself “conservative” rather than libertarian ...

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