A libertarian case for monarchy


  • Leland B. Yeager Leland Yeager is Ludwig von Mises Professor of Economics, Emeritus, at Auburn University




Clear thought and discussion suffer when all sorts of good things, like liberty, equality, fraternity, rights, majority rule, and general welfare – some in tension with others – are marketed together under the portmanteau label «democracy.»

Democracy’s core meaning is a particular method of choosing, replacing, and influencing government officials (Schumpeter 1950). It is not a doctrine of what government should and should not do. Nor is it the same thing as personal freedom or a free society or an egalitarian social ethos. True enough, some classical liberals, like Thomas Paine (1791) and Ludwig von Mises (1919), did scorn hereditary monarchy and did express touching faith that representative democracy would choose excellent leaders and adopt policies truly serving the common interest. Experience has taught us better, as the American founders already knew when constructing a government of separated and limited powers and of only filtered democracy.

As an exercise, and without claiming that my arguments are decisive, I’ll contend that constitutional monarchy can better preserve people’s freedom and opportunities than democracy as it has turned out in practice.1


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How to Cite

Yeager, L. B. . (2014). A libertarian case for monarchy. REVISTA PROCESOS DE MERCADO, 11(2), 237–251. https://doi.org/10.52195/pm.v11i2.169