Restricting government to its proper functions, defined by law

Articles

Forced Funding vs Freedom, by Chris Lewis, The Free Radical
"If ever there were a problem that desperately needs fixing, this is it - and I say that the government really should do something. It should get out of the economy and out of our lives as soon as possible. What would soon follow is such a massive flourishing of the gold medal-winning character virtues ..."
In Search of a Word : Limited Government versus 'Anarchy', by Spencer H. MacCallum, The Voluntaryist, Oct 1996
Limited Government--A Moral Issue, by C. W. Anderson, Feb 1992
The Delusion of Limited Government, by Butler Shaffer, 14 May 2002
The Myth of "Limited Government", by Joseph Sobran, 20 Dec 2001
The Roots of Limited Government, by Alan Barth, Feb 1991
Adam Smith and the Invisible Hand, by Edmund A. Opitz, The Freeman, Jun 1976
Explains mercantilism, the rationales for political power, the proper role of government, Adam Smith's metaphor of the "invisible hand", his concept of "equality, liberty and justice" and how a free society allocates economic goods
"Government always acts with power; in the last resort government uses force to back up its decrees. The government of a society is its police power, and the nature of government remains the same, even when office holders are elected by a vote of the people. And when the police power — government — is limited to keeping the peace of the community by curbing those who disturb the peace — criminals —then there is maximum liberty for peaceful citizens. "
Related Topics: Adam Smith, Politics
Bureaucracy and the Civil Service in the United States, by Murray N. Rothbard, Journal of Libertarian Studies, 1995
Historical account of the evolution of the United States Civil Service and attempts to reform it, from its beginnings through the early 20th century
"The program of at least the dominant libertarian-republican wing of the Founding Fathers consisted of ultra-minimal government: ... generally binding down governmental Power with chains of iron, and watching government like a hawk and with vigilance and deep suspicion, lest it resume its natural tendencies and extend Power beyond its strictest bounds."
Conscience on the Battlefield, by Leonard E. Read, 1981
Pamphlet written in 1951, during the Korean War, updated with prologue in 1981; Read recalls the 1918 incident when the troopship he was on was sunk by a German submarine and wonders about his thoughts if he were dying (in 1951) on a Korean battlefield
"Most persons believe some form of government to be necessary as a means of achieving maximum liberty. But unless they succeed in properly limiting government, they will surrender some – or even all – of their personal rights and responsibilities to it. Unless they understand the nature of coercion – its power only to suppress, restrain, destroy – they will yield to it and lose their ability to act creatively. Government has the necessary and logical function of protecting the property and life of all citizens equally."
"I Have a Plan...", by Ron Paul, 18 Oct 2004
Criticises political ads and speeches that present plans for government to "run" the economy or the country
"At the end of the recent presidential debate ... the Democratic nominee recited a litany of supposed cures for nearly everything that ails us, beginning each sentence with the phrase 'I have a plan ...' The problem is that government is not supposed to plan our lives or run the country; we are supposed to be free. That our public discourse strays so far from this principle is an unhappy sign of our times. Those who believe in limited constitutional government should worry every time a politician says, 'I have a plan.'"
Related Topics: Socialism, Capitalism
Objectivism and the State: An Open Letter to Ayn Rand, by Roy A. Childs, Jr., Individualist, Aug 1969
Published by the Society for Individual Liberty; responds to five of Rand's arguments in her essay "The Nature of Government"
"... limited government... holds a monopoly on retaliation but does not initiate the use or threat of physical force ... It is my contention that limited government is a floating abstraction which has never been concretized by anyone; that a limited government must either initiate force or cease being a government; that the very concept of limited government is an unsuccessful attempt to integrate two mutually contradictory elements: statism and voluntarism."
Regime Libertarians, by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr., 12 Jul 2005
Criticises the "Iraq Exit Strategy: America's Path Forward" proposal, made by the Libertarian National Committee on 29 June 2005, and suggests the name "Regime Libertarianism" for those who make proposals such as these
"... we are not speaking here of merely the belief in limited government, or what is sometimes called 'minarchism.' There is a difference between believing in the need for government to preserve and protect freedom, and the view that government is the first condition of society, responsible for giving birth to freedom. In one view, some government is unavoidable; in the other view, power is the benefactor of freedom, the force to which all liberty owes its conception."
The Case For a Libertarian Political Party, by David F. Nolan, The Individualist, Aug 1971
A few months before the founding of the Libertarian Party, Nolan presents his rationale for establishing a new political party, after discussing four other libertarian activist strategies and admitting that "political approaches are inherently coercive"
"The second popular argument against a multi-party system - that is produces 'chaos' - is, from a libertarian viewpoint, actually an argument in its favor. The prospect of a coalition government, where any of a number of small parties can veto legislation, is far from horrifying to anyone who is inclined toward a limited-government (or no-government) philosophy."
Why Limited Representative Government Fails, by Michael S. Rozeff, 17 Apr 2008
Presents a four-element theory of why limited representative government fails
"Once we accept the premise of government, even if it be limited government, we tend to follow out the implication of having others govern us, which is that more government is desirable. The two concepts, limited and government, logically conflict with one another. ... This conflict between limited government and simply government has evidently been resolved in favor of dropping the limited part in favor of the government part."
Related Topics: Government, The State, Voting

Cartoons and Comic Strips

Aren't You Thankful You Voted For the Party of Limited Government?, by Chuck Asay, 16 Apr 2004
Non Sequitur: Federal Dept. of Making Government Smaller, by Wiley Miller, 12 Oct 2004

Books

Leviathan: The Growth of Local Government and the Erosion of Liberty
    by Clint Bolick, 2004
More Liberty Means Less Government: Our Founders Knew This Well
    by Walter E. Williams, 1999

Videos


Is Limited Government an Oxymoron?, by Doug Casey, McCuistion TV, 18 Oct 2009
Dennis McCuistion interviews Doug Casey and Thomas E. Woods, Jr., on their views about the role of government

Sympathy for the Minarchist..., by Stefan Molyneux, 11 May 2009
Questions for minarchists set to the tune of the Rolling Stones' "Sympathy for the Devil"