≡ Menu

The Typhoid Mary Case And Libertarian Theory

On Thu, Jul 2, 2020 at 3:02 PM Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu> wrote:

Dear Mark:

I think we’re in broad agreement on this.

Best regards,


From: Mark

Sent: Thursday, July 02, 2020 1:46 PM

To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Re: Is the judge slipping?

Thanks Walter, not disappointed at all, enjoy the debate.  A couple things:

First:  If you click on the link I included in the prior email that is when he said it.  See the link, here again copied, which includes a video interview of him I am referencing:


Next:  I obviously support the government quarantining typhoid Mary.  I think that sort of makes my point for me in this case, though.  Maybe I did not communicate my concern well enough:

In this case, there has now been so much data and research that seems to point to Covid 19 being no more than a flu.

The flu can be deadly to some people, (as can the common cold, if they are immuno-compromised, etc).  There are stats that show some people contract the flue and pass away, sadly.

So my point is, what is the benchmark here and who sets it?  the Judge stated “if someone is known to be contagious…”  obviously, in that statement he made, he mean’t contagious with Covid, so maybe that is actually a good point (coming in line with my point):  I have not seen anything conclusive about how to determine if someone is contagious.  First they “suggested” asymptomatic carriers could pass it on, but since then that claim has been undermined.  Same thing with younger individuals.

All in a free society can agree that if I am coughing and wheezing and runny nose I should not be out and about mingling with the public.  And I would not be, as you wouldn’t either.  Common sense.

What I am getting at here, and I think you and others of like mind can see the concern, is that they are wanting to mandate quarantining, masks, whatever, for everyone “just in case you have covid and don’t know it”.  I suppose the Judge’s point protects in that case, because he would not agree that a mandate such as that were constitutionally sound, because the burden of proof is on the government to prove they have a “typhoid Mary” on their hands, I am sure you get what I mean.

If you follow what’s been going on with covid, studies now are showing that as many as 80 times more people actually had covid (but were fine) in the testing they were doing in March – April.

See here:


That means the fatality rate is much much lower (again, think of what happens year in – year out with the flue, some percentage do die, but there is noone talking about government mandated quarantines).

So do you agree, Dr. B, that the burden of proof that someone is contagious is on the government, and the person in question they are trying to quarantine is allowed due process as per the 5th and 14th Amendments?

I would love it if you would also forward this to Judge Napolitano as well.  I would love to meet you and he at a coffee shop someday and have this talk in person (outside and 6 feet apart lol), I’ll pay for the coffee, and muffins!!

You guys both mean a ton to me.  Having a libertarian streak in me can be a lonely undertaking lol, you both know that better than I.

Thank you again –


On Wed, Jul 1, 2020 at 10:14 PM Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu> wrote:

Dear Mark:

I am sorry to disappoint you, but, I agree with Judge Andrew Napolitano, and enthusiastically so.

You attribute this to him: “the states can force someone to wear a mask  IF they are known to be contagious” (my emphasis).

Now, obviously, the common cold is contagious, but it is not serious; no quarantine justified there. Either the Judge stated this in the … material, or, he thought it so obvious that it need not even be mentioned.

What’s your view on Typhoid Mary? Typhoid is both very serious, and contagious. Surely, the government was justified in compelling her to isolate. Well, IF covid is that serious, it was certainly widely thought to be in March of this year (you don’t say when the Judge made this statement), in my view the govt would be justified in quarantining people.

I am BCCing the Judge on this. He’ll respond if he wishes to do so.

On another unrelated matter, see below.

Best regards,


From: Mark

Sent: Wednesday, July 01, 2020 8:06 AM

To: Walter Block <walterblock@business.loyno.edu>; walter block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Fwd: Is the judge slipping?

Hi Walter, I hope you are staying sane these days.  See below, maybe you can help.  I sent the below to Lew, but mailbox is full:

Would love to reach Judge Nap directly and get him to further elaborate.

Would love to see your responses to this posted as well:

– mwd

From: Mark

Date: Wed, Jul 1, 2020 at 9:04 AM

Subject: Is the judge slipping?

To: Lew Rockwell

Hi Lew; I’m hoping someone among your crowd of luminaries can talk to the judge for me.  I have no way to reach him.  Below is a link to an interview with Judge Andrew Napolitano on “America’s Newsroom” hosted by Fox News’ Melissa Francis.  Ms. Francis starts by showing the clip of Nancy Pelosi saying a federal face mask mandate is long overdue.  She then questions our favorite judge regarding whether the government has the authority to do this.

Napolitano starts with stating the Federal Government has no authority to issue laws regarding public health / safety, because of the 10th amendment language reserving all matters not enumerated in the Constitution to the States, or to the People.

Then, Napolitano says that the states can force someone to wear a mask “if they are known to be contagious”, …. But this would (paraphrased) require the state legislature to first pass a law… because a governor does not have the authority to make laws.

Where does he come up with the legal underpinnings that if someone is “known to be contagious” the state can (assuming that legislature passes a law) mandate the mask or maybe even quarantine that person?

The 5th Amendment restricts the Fed Gov, stating that no one can be deprived of their liberty without due process of law, which to me means liberty to freely move about and conduct their life, whether that be going to the library, going to the grocery store, going for a walk, working your job, or conducting the operations of one’s business, and on down the line.  The 14th Amendment further states that same language, restricting State governments.

Supposing he is right and I don’t understand my laws, I am guessing that the burden of proof is on the government to prove this person that they want to mandate mask-wearing is contagious. But again, contagious with what?  If this is the case, the government could then mandate someone for having the flu “because they are contagious” as Napolitano claims:

“if a person is known to be contagious, the state could require that person to be quarantined or wear a mask”.

The coronavirus and the flu, and even the common cold, (among many other things for which one can be contagious) has been known to lead to death in certain individuals.

Napolitano mentions that Fed/State Gov’s can mandate mask-wearing on their property (like at the Post Office, or in a Federal Court Building etc).  The host Ms. Francis then brings up the obvious point, that if this is in fact true, then a City Council could just pass a law saying “no one can walk on our sidewalks or streets without a mask”.  When questioned, the city council could state they reviewed medical guidance by the CDC and determined it was required because “the coronavirus is dangerous, has shown to be contagious leading to death” etc…

My point here is I think that Napolitano is going down a very, very slippery slope. I was a bit shocked, and very disappointed to hear him say that.

If what he is saying is true, then it seems libertarians have nothing left to argue about.  We are cooked.

All responses welcome, and you have my permission to post this on your site if you find it useful (please do not share my email address on your site).


Thank you,



4:23 am on November 23, 2020

Please follow and like us:

Threats, Too, Are Proscribed By The NAP

Dear Fellow Libertarians:

I don’t advocate punishing pre crimes. I suggest that violence is justified against threats.

Best regards,


From: The NAPster

Sent: Sunday, August 30, 2020 7:59 AM

To: Kenn Williamson ; Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Typhoid Mary

Walter and Kenn:

Interesting discussion that you two are having.

I agree with Kenn in principle: libertarianism does not allow for punishing pre-crime (to use the term made popular in the movie, The Minority Report).  Pre-crime is how most state regulation works: the state posits that action A might lead to damage, and thus prohibits action A, but that unnecessarily and immorally constrains all of those using their own property engaging in action A who don’t cause the theoretical damage.  Only when damage is actually caused, or is imminent, is responsive force justified.

However, I would raise a slight issue with one thing Kenn said, namely, “Any person has the right to regulate who is coming into their property but they do not have the right to regulate the activity of others on their own property.” I think that it would be compatible with libertarianism to “regulate” (by which I assume Kenn means “use force against”) the activity of others on their own property if that activity were itself causing an invasion of one’s own property.  So, to use Kenn’s example, if A had a fan that was blowing VINE-19 seeds onto B’s property, then B could use reasonable force to try to stop this.  It would be no different than if A were firing bullets at B from A’s property.

Applied to Typhoid Mary, private-property owners could always exclude her from coming onto their property, but could only enter her property if she were somehow spewing forth her infectious disease from there.

Zack Rofer

Check out my book: Busting Myths About the State and the Libertarian Alternative


4:21 am on November 23, 2020

Please follow and like us:

Is Framing An Innocent Person For A Crime A Violation of Libertarian Law? Yes.

From: Anonymous

Sent: Tuesday, September 08, 2020 4:39 PM

To: walter block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Question about libertarian theory

Dear Prof. Block,

I’m a fellow libertarian (I mean Rothbardian all the way, etc.)

I’d like to pick your brain on this actual case .

In short, a woman physically harms herself in an effort to frame her boyfriend, claiming that he did it.  Her plot is, thankfully, revealed, and she goes to jail.

But let’s imagine that she succeeded.

How should we analyze this case in libertarian theory?

She lied.  But lying isn’t aggression, as long as it isn’t fraud, i.e. there is no theft.

She used the judge as an instrument against her boyfriend.  However, the judge has a mind of his own, he is not a robot.  Just like Rothbard says incitement isn’t a violation of the NAP, because the people you incide are responsible for their own actions,  similarly, the judge maybe should be responsible for being misled, not she for misleading him.

But, if that’s the case, you see what happens:  Anybody who doesn’t like somebody tries to frame him!   If it works, great.  If it doesn’t, the judge will be punished, not me.   Crazy, right?

Somehow, we need to make the NAP cover lies that intentionally lead to harm, even if it isn’t technically fraud.  I would be interested in your thoughts.  And I would share them with my fellow Greek-speaking libertarian friends, if you don’t mind.

Thank you very much,


Dear GC:

Thanks for sending me this good challenge to libertarian theory.

I think that the answer is that this woman aided and abetting a criminal conspiracy. It is sort of like the getaway car driver for the criminal gang. The driver just drove. Driving should be legal. So he’s not a criminal? No, he IS a criminal because he aided and abetted a crime. Well, so did the frame up woman.

Best regards,



4:19 am on November 23, 2020

Please follow and like us:

Letter 1

From: Mike

Sent: Monday, September 07, 2020 3:20 PM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: Libertarianism and hate


You wrote:

On the other hand, as long as you adhere to the non aggression principle (NAP) of libertarianism, you can be as hateful as you want. You can be an “equal opportunity” hater of everyone, a real misanthrope. Your policy can even be “No Lives Matter, not a single solitary one of them” and you can still be a libertarian in good standing.

To “be as hateful as you want,” while adhering to the non aggression principle, I think of as falling under the umbrella of being as selfish, as self-concerned, as dismissive of others without harming them, “as you want.”  This is why I argue that somebody who pursues of a life of license without harming others can be indistinguishable from a libertarian.  I argued, additionally, the “pursuit of the legalization of ‘medical marijuana,’” remember that? was arguably an advancement of libertarianism, but indistinguishable from people who want to smoke dope without fear of legal sanction, or at least government sanction.  I agree that government has no business telling people what they cannot do with their bodies that harms no one.  The right to life being inalienable, I am not entirely convinced that sanctioning suicide is impermissible.

It’s a shame that libertarians who seek only to be left alone while harming no one, can be so easily confused with license-seekers.  But, well, there it is.

Thank you,

Mike Smith

P.S.  I also figure that working to gain wealth denominated in dollars by using tools of theft or devices that utilize tools of theft such as does the stock market , while eschewing voting as encouraging gangster government, is a conflict, if not downright hypocrisy.

Letter 2

On Sep 8, 2020, at 8:16 AM, Walter Block wrote:

Dear Mike:

In my view, libertarianism allows us to “harm” each other as much as we want. We can refuse to deal with others. We can outcompete them, etc. Libertarianism only proscribes violating their rights, for example, by murdering, raping, them, stealing from them, etc.

Best regards,


Letter 3

From: Mike

Sent: Tuesday, September 08, 2020 1:17 PM

To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Re: Libertarianism and hate

You are generous with you time and intellect.

Thank you,


Letter 4

Dear Mike:

In this as in many other things, I pattern my practice in this regard after those of my mentor and friend, Murray Rothbard. He was always glad to share his vision with others, as am I.

Best regards,



4:17 am on November 23, 2020

Please follow and like us:

There Are No Positive Obligations in Libertarianism; Only Negative Ones

Letter 1

From: Jens S

Sent: Sunday, August 23, 2020 1:01 PM

To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: The peaceful bum problem

Hello Walter,

many people (for example Ben Shapiro) claim that it is not acceptable to just do enough to get by. Instead, they claim, you have a duty to go out of your way to benefit the society around you as much as you can.

In a Libertarian society, this would be nonsense, because only the NAP is a firm boundary.

However, many people have “sinned” by cooperating with the Gov., so they better make up for it before the Libertarian Nuremberg Trials start.

Does this make sense or am I off?

Best Regards


Letter 2

Sent: Monday, August 24, 2020 at 1:29 AM

From: “Walter Block” <wblock@loyno.edu>

To: “Jens S”

Subject: RE: The peaceful bum problem

Dear Jens:

It is a virtue to benefit others.

I cooperate with the govt. I pay taxes, obey rules of the road, go to govt parks, libraries, museums, I used to work for public universities.

I think being a member of the ruling class is the crucial variable.

Block, 2006; Burris, 2012; Codevilla, 2010; Domhoff, 1967, 1971, 1998; Donaldson and Poynting, 2007; Hoppe, 1990; Hughes, 1977; Kolko, 1963; Mises, 1978; Oppenheimer, 1975; Raico, 1977; Rockwell, 2001; Rothbard, 2004. In the view of Rothbard, 2004: “All States are governed by a ruling class that is a minority of the population, and which subsists as a parasitic and exploitative burden upon the rest of society. Since its rule is exploitative and parasitic, the State must purchase the alliance of a group of “Court Intellectuals,” whose task is to bamboozle the public into accepting and celebrating the rule of its particular State. The Court Intellectuals have their work cut out for them. In exchange for their continuing work of apologetics and bamboozlement, the Court Intellectuals win their place as junior partners in the power, prestige, and loot extracted by the State apparatus from the deluded public. The noble task of Revisionism is to de-bamboozle: to penetrate the fog of lies and deception of the State and its Court Intellectuals, and to present to the public the true history of the motivation, the nature, and the consequences of State activity. By working past the fog of State deception to penetrate to the truth, to the reality behind the false appearances, the Revisionist works to delegitimize, to desanctify, the State in the eyes of the previously deceived public.”

Block, Walter E. 2006. “Radical Libertarianism: Applying Libertarian Principles to Dealing with the Unjust Government, Part II” Reason Papers, Vol. 28, Spring, pp.  85-109; http://www.walterblock.com/publications/block_radical-libertarianism-rp.pdfhttp://www.walterblock.com/wp-content/uploads/publications/block_radical-libertarianism-rp.pdf; (death penalty justified, net taxpayer, ruling class analysis p. 87)

Burris, Charles A. 2012. “Who Rules America: Power Elite Analysis and American History.” January 18; https://archive.lewrockwell.com/burris/burris21.1.html

Codevilla, Angelo M. 2010. The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America and What We Can Do About It. Beaufort Books. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0825305586/?tag=waiscr08-20

Domhoff, G. William. 1967. Who Rules America? Englewood Cliffs NJ: Prentice-Hall.

Domhoff, G. William. 1971. The Higher Circles: The Governing Class in America. New York: Vintage Books

Domhoff, G. William. 1998. Who Rules America? Power and Politics in the Year 2000, Third Edition, Santa Cruz: University of California

Donaldson, Mike and Scott Poynting. 2007. Ruling Class Men: Money, Sex, Power. Peter Lang.


Hoppe, Hans-Hermann. 1990. “Marxist and Austrian Class Analysis,” The Journal of Libertarian Studies, Vol. 9, No. 2, Fall, pp. 79-94; http://mises.org/journals/jls/9_2/9_2_5.pdf,%22&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us

Hughes, Jonathan R.T. 1977. The Governmental Habit: Economic Controls from Colonial Times to the Present.  New York: Basic Books,

Kolko, Gabriel. 1963. Triumph of Conservatism, Chicago: Quadrangle Books

Mises, Ludwig von. 1978. The Clash of Group Interests and Other Essays. New York: Center for Libertarian Studies. http://www.mises.org/etexts/mises/clash/clash.asp

Oppenheimer, Franz. [1914] 1975.  The State, New York: Free Life Editions

Raico, Ralph. 1977. “Classical Liberal exploitation theory: a comment on Professor Liggio’s paper,” The Journal of Libertarian Studies, Vol. 1, No. 3, Summer, pp. 179-184; http://mises.org/daily/4567/http://mises.org/document/1641/Classical-Liberal-Exploitation-Theory-A-Comment-on-Professor-Liggios-Paper

Rockwell, Jr. Llewellyn H. 2001. “Liberty and the Common Good” December 31;


Rothbard, Murray N. 2004. “The Case for Revisionism (and Against A Priori History)”; http://mises.org/library/case-revisionism-and-against-priori-history

Rothbard, Murray N. 1977. “The Treaty That Wall Street Wrote.” Inquiry, vol. 1, no. 2, December 5: pp. 9–14; https://www.lewrockwell.com/1970/01/murray-n-rothbard/the-treaty-that-wall-street-wrote/

Class analysis:

Hoppe, Hans-Hermann. 1990. “Marxist and Austrian Class Analysis,” The Journal of Libertarian Studies, Vol. 9, No. 2, Fall, pp. 79-94; http://mises.org/journals/jls/9_2/9_2_5.pdf,%22&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us

Block, Walter E. 2006. “Radical Libertarianism: Applying Libertarian Principles to Dealing with the Unjust Government, Part II” Reason Papers, Vol. 28, Spring, pp.  85-109; http://www.walterblock.com/publications/block_radical-libertarianism-rp.pdfhttp://www.walterblock.com/wp-content/uploads/publications/block_radical-libertarianism-rp.pdf; (death penalty justified, net taxpayer, ruling class analysis p. 87)

Burris, Charles A. 2012. “Who Rules America: Power Elite Analysis and American History.” January 18; https://archive.lewrockwell.com/burris/burris21.1.html

Libertarian Class Analysis (also called Power Elite Analysis or Establishment Studies) is a theme I have repeatedly stressed in my articles at LRC. Knowledge is power. Empower yourself by learning about Libertarian Class Analysis and how it impacts specifically upon the welfare-warfare state and the parasitical elites which benefit from this leviathan within our midst. Here are several items with which the discerning LRC reader may begin:

“Libertarian Class Analysis,” by Sheldon Richman

“Our Establishment Church,” by Charles A. Burris

“Hidden History: Where Organized Crime and Government Meet,” by Charles A. Burris

“Wall Street, Banks, and American Foreign Policy,” by Murray N. Rothbard

“The Anatomy of the State,” by Murray N. Rothbard

“Origins of the Federal Reserve,” by Murray N. Rothbard

“Our Interests and Their Interests,” by Murray N. Rothbard

“The Clash of Group Interests,” by Ludwig von Mises

“Toward a Theory of State Capitalism: Ultimate Decision Making and Class Structure,” by Walter E. Grinder and John Hagel III

“Classical Liberal Roots of Marxist Class Analysis,” by Ralph Raico (audio lecture)

“Marxist and Austrian Class Analysis,” by Hans-Herman Hoppe (audio lecture)

“America’s Ruling Class — And the Perils of Revolution,” by Angelo M. Codevilla

“A Glimpse Behind the Curtain,” by Charles A. Burris

Libertarian Class Analysis — an Amazon.com book list

The Elite Is Neat, The Masses are Asses — an Amazon.com book list

Power Brokers, Fixers, and Elite Insiders — an Amazon.com book list

Establishment Studies — an Amazon.com book list

I’ve written a bit about the Libt Nuremberg Trials:

Alston, Wilton D. and Walter E. Block. 2007. “Reparations, Once Again.” Human Rights Review, Vol. 9, No. 3, September, pp. 379-392; http://tinyurl.com/2b75fl

Block, Walter E. 2001. “The Moral Dimensions of Poverty, Entitlements and Theft,” The Journal of Markets and Morality, Vol. 4, No. 1, pp. 83-93; http://www.acton.org/publicat/m_and_m/2001_spring/block.html; Search for “Walter Block” under “Authors” here: http://www.marketsandmorality.com/index.php/mandm/search

Block, Walter E. 2002. “On Reparations to Blacks for Slavery,” Human Rights Review, Vol. 3, No. 4, July-September, pp. 53-73;


(David Horowitz, Randall Robinson)

Block, Walter E. 2003.  “Libertarianism vs. Objectivism; A Response to Peter Schwartz,” Reason Papers, Vol. 26, Summer, pp. 39-62; http://www.reasonpapers.com/pdf/26/rp_26_4.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2004. “Radical Libertarianism: Applying Libertarian Principles to Dealing with the Unjust Government, Part I” Reason Papers, Vol. 27, Fall, pp. 117-133;


Block, Walter E. 2007. “Ron Paul and Matching Funds,” October 1;


Block, Walter E. 2008. Privatize The Highways. Auburn, AL: The Mises Institute

Block, Walter E. 2009. “Toward a Libertarian Theory of Guilt and Punishment for the Crime of Statism” in Hulsmann, Jorg Guido and Stephan Kinsella, eds., Property, Freedom and Society: Essays in Honor of Hans-Hermann Hoppe, Auburn, AL: Ludwig von Mises Institute, pp. 137-148; http://mises.org/books/hulsmann-kinsella_property-freedom-society-2009.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2009. “Libertarian punishment theory: working for, and donating to, the state” Libertarian Papers, Vol. 1; http://libertarianpapers.org/articles/2009/lp-1-17.pdfhttp://libertarianpapers.org/2009/17-libertarian-punishment-theory-working-for-and-donating-to-the-state/#comments (Concentration camp guard)

Block, Walter E. 2010. “In Defense of Counterfeiting Illegitimate Money: Rejoinder to Murphy and Machaj,” American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Vol. 69, No. 2, 867-880, April; http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/123327372/abstract

Block, Walter E. 2011. “Hoppe, Kinsella and Rothbard II on Immigration: A Critique.” Journal of Libertarian Studies; Vol. 22, pp. 593–623; http://mises.org/journals/jls/22_1/22_1_29.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2011. “Rejoinder to Kinsella and Tinsley on Incitement, Causation, Aggression and Praxeology” Journal of Libertarian Studies; Vol. 22, pp. 641–664; http://mises.org/journals/jls/22_1/22_1_32.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2015. “On slavery and libertarianism.” Journal of Economic and Social Thought. Vol. 2, Issue 3, September, pp. 161-174; www.kspjournals.org


Block, Walter E. 2010. “Are unions criminal gangs?” Global Virtue Ethics Review, Vol. 6. No. 1, pp. 28-49; http://www.spaef.com/article.php?id=1176http://www.spaef.com/file.php?id=1176http://www.academia.edu/1497243/Are_Unions_Criminal_Gangs

Block, Walter E. 2009. “Libertarian punishment theory: working for, and donating to, the state” Libertarian Papers, Vol. 1; http://libertarianpapers.org/2009/17-libertarian-punishment-theory-working-for-and-donating-to-the-state/

Block, Walter E. 2008. “Homesteading, ad coelum, owning views and forestalling.” The Social Sciences. Vol. 3, No. 2, pp. 96-103; http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1890872

Block, Walter E. Unpublished C. “Praxeological Insights, or Artificially Impregnable Theories?”

Block, Walter E. and J.H. Huebert. 2008-2009. “Defending Corporations” Cumberland Law Review, Vol. 39(2), pp. 363-385; http://iris.cba.loyno.edu/exchange/walterblock/Inbox/Re:%20can%27t%20access%20pub.EML/1_multipart_xF8FF_2_2008-2009_Defending%20Corporations.pdf/C58EA28C-18C0-4a97-9AF2-036E93DDAFB3/2008-2009_Defending%20Corporations.pdf?attach=1

Block, Walter E. and Gene Callahan. 2003. “Is There A Right to Immigration? A Libertarian Perspective,” Human Rights Review, Vol. 5, No. 1, October-December, pp. 46-71;


Whitehead, Roy, Catherine Gould and Walter E. Block. 2004. “The value of private water rights: from a legal and economic perspective,” Albany Law Environmental Outlook Journal. Vol. 9, No. 2, pp. 315-343; http://tinyurl.com/36p9hehttp://

Best regards,


Letter 3

From: Jens S <home1337@mail.com>

Sent: Monday, September 07, 2020 1:30 PM

To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Re: RE: The peaceful bum problem

Hello Walter,

you are a titan, the Libertarian punishment theory article helped me a bunch!

Another question:

Austrians know that humans have goals, and will use scarce means to achieve

their goals starting with those they value most, and then going down the list.

If my doorknob is broken I use tools and materials to fix it, or use money or

favors owed to get somebody else to do the job.

But what if I try to fix/replace a bad habit?

If I drink too much, have shoddy work habits and smoke cigarettes every day,

I do many outward things like buying nicotine patches and hiring hypnotists and psychologists.

But I am also working inwardly, trying to pull some goals on my inner list down, and push others


Do you think economic theory can adequately describe this inner work,

or is it firmly in the realm of psychology, not to be touched

by economists?

Best Regards,


Letter 4

Dear Jens:

Thanks for your kind words.

I think that econ has something to say about bad habits: drugging, overeating, boozing, being lazy, etc.

Take overeating. Right now, I want to lose weight. But, later, I eat ice cream, knowing full well that this will lead to a weight gain. How is this reconciled? Right now, I’m not eating ice cream. I’m typing my response to you. So, I rank losing weight higher than eating ice cream. But later on, when I eat the ice cream, my preferences have changed. Even as I gobble down this treat, knowing it will put the poundage on, my ranking is then: ice cream, #1, losing weight, #2.

Now, you might say that losing weight is my long run goal, while eating ice cream is only short run, and therefore less important. But I don’t think there’s anything in all of Austrian economics that can support that contention.

Best regards,



4:13 am on November 23, 2020

Please follow and like us:

I’ve debated on this subject with three Loyola University Professors; be fair, let me know who you think won these debates.

April 5, 2016. Tuesday. “Catholic social thought and libertarianism: friends or foes?” A debate between Fr. Edward Vacek, SJ, professor of religion and Walter Block, professor of economics. It will take place from 7-9 pm, Nunemaker Hall, Monroe Hall, 3rd floor. Sponsored by the Loyola Institute of Ministry, the Religious Studies Department, the Economics Department, the Loyola economics club and the Loyola libertarian club. Moderator: Gage Counts, Opinion and Editorial Editor of the Maroon. For some background on this debate, see the 2/19/16 issue of the Maroon, pp. 14-15. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yi-T41lcCX4https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYmi7XtB0wI

February 24, 2015 debate with processor Bill Quigley about Minimum wage laws “A force for good or ill” at Loyola University New Orleans (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q5NQu5Hsx8A&feature=youtu.be)February 24, 2015. Loyola University New Orleans. Debate: “The minimum wage law: a force for good or ill? Prof. Bill Quigley of the law school supports this legislation, Prof. Walter Block of the economics department criticizes it”; Nunemaker Hall, 7:15pm.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q5NQu5Hsx8A&feature=youtu.be;



April 8, 2014. Walter Block debates Prof. Boyd Blundell: “Minimum Wage: yea or nay?” Sponsored by the Economics Club of Loyola. At 7 pm 114 Miller Hall. Alison Cormier, Moderator. Alcormie@loyno.eduhttps://archive.lewrockwell.com/lrc-blog/walter-block-how-to-obliterate-your-intellectual-opponent-in-a-debate/http://fatherhollywood.blogspot.com/2014/04/block-vs-blondel-atheist-economist-vs.htmlhttp://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2014/05/atheist-economist-vschristian.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+economicpolicyjournal%2FKpwH+%28EconomicPolicyJournal.com%29https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HN0sfgUCNyM;


Here’s a formal speech I gave on this topic:

May 21, 2016. Seattle. Mises Circle. my topic: minimum wage.

https://mises.org/events/contra-krugman-demolishing-economic-myths-2016-electionhttps://mises.org/events/contra-krugman-demolishing-economic-myths-2016-election#form-36673https://youtu.be/XekCVIUmBiMhttps://mises.org/library/me-bernie-and-minimum-wage; Videos of the entire event are available here


and an album of photos


Best regards,



2:18 am on November 20, 2020

Please follow and like us:

Reactions To My Op Ed In the Wall Street Journal, Part III

Block, Walter E. 2020. “Libertarians Spoil the Election; Jo Jorgensen exceeds Biden’s margin in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona and Georgia.” November 9; https://www.wsj.com/articles/libertarians-spoil-the-election-11604867668

Letter 1:

Regarding Walter E. Block’s “Libertarians Spoil the Election” (op-ed, Nov. 9): The outcome of the 2020 election might have been different if states adopted ranked-choice voting. Libertarians could have ranked Jo Jorgensen as their first choice and President Trump as their second choice without fear of spoiling the election.

George Sakellos

Ringoes, N.J.

Dear George:

Good point. But, if wishes were horses, beggars would ride. If they would have allowed Jo Jorgenson into the debates, she probably would have quadrupled here vote, and reached almost 5%.

Letter 2:

Mr. Block makes a valid point regarding strategic voting—the influence of your vote depends on whether you are in a competitive state or district. Voting for a Democrat or a Republican is more a “wasted” vote in uncompetitive states than voting Libertarian, or for some other third party.

At the same time, a vote is a market signal. Elections aren’t a one-shot deal. To reject President Trump was to send a signal—that steak is burned and I prefer medium-rare. That signal was stronger, by Mr. Block’s own reasoning, in competitive states. The GOP can continue to serve burned steak, and continue to lose market share and voters.

Those who trust markets interpret them carefully. Also, they understand that a vote belongs to the voter and are loath to suggest that it belongs, for whatever reason, to a party.

Martin D. Kennedy

Nashville, Tenn.

Dear Martin:

There’s all the world of difference between a dollar vote and a political vote. The former occurs every day, every hour, every minute, every second. The latter, only at two year intervals. The marketplace allows every legal taste to be satisfied; the ballot box requires a package deal. Posit that you like Trump on policies 2, 4, 6, and 8, while Biden on policies 1, 3, 5, 7. You can’t pick or choose. In the market, you can get a pink polka dot bicycle if you want. Most important, the free enterprise system is voluntary, and every human action is mutually beneficial at least in the ex ante sense. In the political sphere, there are winners and losers.

Letter 3:

Mr. Block’s assumption that the votes of Libertarians would automatically go to President Trump if forced into a bipartisan choice is both antidemocratic and false. He claims that there are only a few positions outside of economic views where Libertarians disagree with Democrats. But greens have known for years that Libertarians strongly agree with most of their views on “social” issues, for instance, the right to abortion, a most unpopular view with Republicans.

The fact is that more choice in an election brings out more voters. There is no guarantee that Libertarians would even bother to vote without their own candidate. Perhaps they would vote for the Green Party candidate instead.

Here’s who I blame: the Republican candidate himself. In 2000 Al Gore, a former senator from Tennessee, couldn’t win his home state and lost the election. President Trump’s recent behavior did more to scuttle his election chances than Libertarian votes in a few swing states.

David McCorquodale

Wilmington, Del.

Dear Mr. McCorquodale:

I never said that “the votes of Libertarians would automatically go to President Trump.” I only maintained that more of them would, a majority of them would. Why? Because libertarians are closer to Trump’s views (lower taxes, less regulation of the economy) than they are to Biden’s (socialism, although he is a bit of a weather vane). Libertarians are very divided on abortion. Murray Rothbard was pro choice, Ron Paul is pro life. Thus, this issue cannot be definitive. The idea that libertarians would favor the totalitarian Greens is highly problematic. The issue I was addressing was not whether “President Trump’s recent behavior did MORE to scuttle his election chances than Libertarian votes in a few swing states.” You might well be correct in this assessment of yours. But I only averred that the libertarians reduced his chances of reelection.

Letter 4:

Mr. Block’s self-flagellation misses an immediate directive to take. The energy consumed in self-indignation might be better focused in the Georgia Senate runoff: Libertarian candidate Shane Hazel won 114,575 votes, 2.3% on Nov. 3. Mr. Block: Republican Senate candidates would certainly love to call those votes their own.

Paul J. Schilling

Saint Augustine, Fla.

Dear Mr. Schilling:

Joke: the mother buys her son two dress shirts. He goes to the bedroom, and changes into one of them. He comes back down to the living room and says to his mother: “What do you think?” Her reply, “The other one, you didn’t like?”

Yes, you make a good point. I indeed “missed” the Georgia Senate runoff in this 600 word op ed. Hey, you can’t do every good thing in a short space. You can’t wear two dress shirts at the same time.

Dear :

Best regards,



3:16 am on November 17, 2020

Please follow and like us:

Block, Walter E. 2020. “Libertarians Spoil the Election; Jo Jorgensen exceeds Biden’s margin in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona and Georgia.” November 9; https://www.wsj.com/articles/libertarians-spoil-the-election-11604867668

Letter 1

David Stockman’s blistering attack on me, and my (if I may say so myself) cordial and agreeable response

Stockman, David. 2020. “With Due Respect: A Commentary On Walter Block’s Damn Nonsense About Libertarian Voters.” November 11;


Block, Walter. 2020. “Stockman vs. Block: Walter Block Responds on the Value of Trump to Libertarians.” November 12;


David Stockman and I will soon be debating this issue on the Tom Woods show.

Letter 2

David Henderson’s very gentle criticism of this op ed of mine, and my response.

Henderson, David. 2020. “Did the Libertarian Party Cost Donald Trump the Election?.” November 9;


Dear David: I accept your minor criticism: I may well have screwed up on this. You say I was “wrong about Pennsylvania and Nevada. Jorgenson’s vote doesn’t cover the spread.” I’m still not sure about this. When I wrote this, and even now, not all of the votes have been fully counted, certified as non fraudulent, etc. But I have a problem with your major criticism:

“In his op/ed, Walter makes a strong case for Trump over Biden, most of which I agree with. Walter is critical of Trump on protectionism, as he should be. But he does leave out a major issue, one on which Biden is head and shoulders above Trump: immigration.”

I think I was right to leave out immigration. Why? Because along with voluntary slavery, abortion, Israel, libertarians are heavily divided on immigration. You, me and Bumper Hornberger, amongst many others favor open borders. But sterling libertarians such as Murray Rothbard and Hans Hoppe, Lew Rockwell and many, many others oppose open borders. So, how can I, in my attempt to speak for all libertarians, have placed Biden “head and shoulders above Trump” on this issue? I maintain I could do no such thing. And ditto for all other issues which greatly divide libertarians. I can hardly criticize Biden or Trump for not agreeing with a libertarian position, when we ourselves are divided on it.

My group, Libertarians for Trump, which I started along with Donald Miller and the late Ralph Raico was an attempt to reflect what all libertarians could agree on: Overall, Donald was vastly to be favored vis a vis Crooked Hillary, but we also wanted to help Gary Johnson as much as possible. Hence vote for Donald only in purple states. Everywhere else he would either lose or win big, and thus didn’t really need our votes there.

Letter 3

From: Mike Holmes <mikeholmescpa@earthlink.net>

Sent: Thursday, November 12, 2020 8:25 PM

To: ‘Walter Block’ <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: RE: Nice WSJ opinion item today

Yes a lot of good feedback from your op-ed. Including those in the WSJ.

You continue to fight the necessary battles. And “behold!” the words “Libertarian Party” and “libertarian” once again are seen in a major national daily paper.

I’m sure Loyola is delighted to see one of their most prominent scholars receive such coverage. But probably no raise for you nevertheless…

Stay healthy.

Mike Holmes

Katy TX

Dear Mike:

They are not at all that delighted. Indeed, the very opposite is the case.

Best regards,


The post Reactions To My Op Ed In the Wall Street Journal, Part II appeared first on LewRockwell.

Please follow and like us:

Reactions To My Recent Op Ed In the Wall Street Journal:

Block, Walter E. 2020. “Libertarians Spoil the Election; Jo Jorgensen exceeds Biden’s margin in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona and Georgia.” November 9; https://www.wsj.com/articles/libertarians-spoil-the-election-11604867668

There are quite a few of them; I attach only a dozen here. Some of them are quite interesting. Happy perusal

Letter 1:


Dear Bob:

Thanks for mentioning this on your blog. I guess we’ll have to continue to agree to disagree on Donald versus Crooked Hillary as president. With her, the Supreme Court would look very different than it now does. That’s pretty important.

Best regards,


Letter 2:

From: jkefauver

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 1:06 PM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: Sir – we work with Carrie Sheffield, White House Correspondent and host, “Just the News AM” – request for TV interview:

Requesting an interview sometime soon on my new live show, “Just the News AM” (airing on DISH Network, Pluto, Apple TV, etc.). It is a daily morning news show in the 9-10am EST hour.  We’d love to conduct the interview Skype or on set at 18th and K in D.C.  This would be a 7-9 minute hit.

Possible dates: either this Thursday 11/12 or Friday 11/13.

We caught your piece in the WSJ re: “Libertarians Spoil the Election” and this would be the topic of your segment.

More about us at www.JustTheNews.com we are a digital news startup founded in Feb 2020 by veteran journalist John Solomon. Our staff have worked at ABC News, CBS, CNN, Fox News, WashPost, The Hill, WashTimes, Forbes, POLITICO, etc. We’re already averaging more than 10 million visitors a month to our news, video and podcast content. President Trump often Tweets out our articles and interviews (here’s one of my articles he Tweeted out, for example, and another one here. Here’s another shared by Lara Trump).

We recently launched a nationally-syndicated suite of TV programs airing in 50 million unique homes with a distributor called Real America’s Voice News. They are located on PlutoTV Channel 240, Dish Channel 219, Roku, Apple TV, FireTV or http://AmericasVoice.news.

Just the News website with video promo: https://justthenews.com/accountability/media/just-news-launching-tv-initiative-partnering-real-americas-voice-network

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JustTheNews/status/1308393035278024704?s=20

PR Newswire: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/new-media-partnership-launched-dedicated-to-truth-in-reporting-301135560.html

The size of the audience varies per video.

Hope that helps, and feel free to call with any additional questions.

Dear Folks:

I’d be delighted to do this.

Best regards,


Letter 3

From: Richard Claycombe

Sent: Wednesday, November 11, 2020 12:37 PM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: trump or biden

Hello Walter,

Just read your WSJ column.  I voted for Johnson in 016 and have been a republican all my life, until the party dissolved into the Trump cult.  I live in PA and thank god that Trump lost.  No I’m not a blockhead; apparently you are.  Trump is thug who cares only about himself and aspires to hide in the presidency the rest of his life.  If he had managed to steal this election, the trump party would have continued to nominate him and we would never have another real election.  It would take time but corruption would take over the economy and we would end up no more prosperous than Russia.  No we dodged the end of democracy.  Yes democratic economics are bad, but it looks like Biden won’t control the senate so he will be limited in power.  Anything the democrats do to impoverish us will leave us better off than Valimire Trump would.

Richard Claycombe

Economics, McDaniel College

From: Walter Block [mailto:wblock@loyno.edu]

Sent: Wednesday, November 11, 2020 7:44 PM

To: Richard Claycombe

Subject: RE: trump or biden

CAUTION: This email originated from a non-McDaniel address. Do not click links or open attachments unless you recognize the sender and know the content is safe.

Dear Richard:

Are you a student or a prof?

Yes, Trump is often an ignorant bully, protectionist, big spender. But he’s also reduced taxes and regulations. Biden will lead us in the direction of Venezuela. I don’t relish going there.

Best regards,


From: Richard Claycombe

Sent: Wednesday, November 11, 2020 6:58 PM

To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: RE: trump or biden

I’m a prof.  Aged 68, finishing my last semester.  Yeah, democratic economics are awful.  But Joe isn’t Bernie and even if they get the senate (not likely), we can vote them out in the coming elections.  Donald was already trying to turn our elections in Russian ones.  And his faithful would gladly support his autocracy.  Given four more years, there would nothing left of our democracy.   I find it interesting that the stock market likes Joe so far.  They don’t think we’re headed for Venezuela.  I didn’t expect that.

Dick Claycombe

Dear Dick:

We’ll have to agree to disagree.

Best regards,


Letter 4

From: Hans Kempers <hans.a.kempers@gmail.com>

Sent: Thursday, July 30, 2020 8:10 PM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: Article in the WSJ of July 16, 2020

Dear Mr Block,

I congratulate you with the fact that you have such a majority at Loyola University that is in favor of your point of view that, in order to form a balanced opinion, young people need to see all sides of a certain subject. (A score of 4,500 against 650 is reason to be proud).

I respectfully disagree with you that  voluntary slavery is an allowed arrangement. If I want to end my life and ask a friend to pull the trigger, that does not get him off the hook for murder charges in case he does what I asked him to do.

Being and immigrant from The Netherlands I am confused by the discussions in this country about slavery.

1. It is a concept that was accepted for hundreds of thousands of years. The Abrahamic religions accepted it, as long as you treated those you owned humanely.

In most civilizations it was an accepted practice. The forefathers of my Italian friends did catch my forefathers to row in their galleys and fight in their arena’s to entertain the Roman citizens. I do not believe that they owe me anything for that horrible fact.

2. America has struggled with the concept since its founding. I do not hear in the present discussion that hundreds of thousands Americans gave their life during the Civil War to change society. I am of the opinion that that was a high enough price paid.

3. The reason that the Dutch and English slave traders were able to get their merchandise in Africa was, that the local black Kings would catch members of other tribes in order to sell them. The Ashanti Tribe was very successful in these ventures. I did not hear one black person ask for reimbursement from the Ashanti’s.

4. Well meaning efforts in this country have had negative consequences for the upcoming black population. Desegregation had as effect that the leaders and successful black entrepreneurs and intellectuals left their neighborhoods and moved to the predominantly white ones. That caused in my opinion a lack of role models in the traditionally black communities and caused a slide downhill. Giving black girls money for getting babies did not help either and added to the diminishing of the traditional strong black family culture.

5. Only a well thought out long term policy can help the black community getting on an even keel with the rest. The fact that many black kids are born in an environment that is not intellectual stimulating gives them a disadvantage from the start. Giving them money to calm them down will only add to the problem. They have to start by being told that nobody at the present owes them anything, but that the Community at large is willing to help them with good education under the condition that they work hard to get better. This country is giving everybody a chance. I have seen that in person. A great example for me was the locker room attended at my country club. He was black and came from a family of small famers. He was a real gentleman with great family values. All his kids worked hard and went to college and are successful in life.

I thank you for your insights.

Hans Kempers

Dear Hans:

Thanks for your good wishes. Sorry, I can’t write you substantively on voluntary slavery, and reparations for coercive slavery, since I’ve already published on those two topics and just would be repeating myself. So, here is what I’ve written on these two issues:

Voluntary slavery:

Block, 1969, 1979, 1988, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007A, 2007B, 2009A, 2009B, 2013, 2014, 2015; Lester, 2000; Nozick, 1974, pp. 58, 283, 331; Philmore, 1982

Block, Walter E. 1969. “Voluntary Slavery.” The Libertarian Connection, Vol. I, No. 3, April 13, pp. 9-11.

Block, Walter E. 1979. Book review of Nancy C. Baker, Baby Selling: the Scandal of Black Market Adoptions, New York: The Vanguard Press, 1978; in Libertarian Review, January, Vol. 7, No. 12, pp. 44-45.

Block, Walter E. 1988. “Rent-a-womb market,” Thunder Bay Ontario Daily; June 26.

Block, Walter E. 1999. “Market Inalienability Once Again: Reply to Radin,” Thomas Jefferson Law Review, Vol. 22, No. 1, Fall, pp. 37-88;  https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/794d/06bfb1186588c840ae3c68d09aa21e74732a.pdfhttp://www.walterblock.com/publications/market_inalienability.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2001. “Alienability, Inalienability, Paternalism and the Law: Reply to Kronman,” American Journal of Criminal Law, Vol. 28, No. 3, Summer, pp. 351-371; http://www.walterblock.com/publications/reply_to_kronman.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2002. “A Libertarian Theory of Secession and Slavery,” June 10; https://archive.lewrockwell.com/block/block15.htmlhttp://libertariantruth.wordpress.com/2006/12/08/a-libertarian-theory-of-secession-and-slavery/

Block, Walter E. 2003. “Toward a Libertarian Theory of Inalienability: A Critique of Rothbard, Barnett, Gordon, Smith, Kinsella and Epstein,” Journal of Libertarian Studies, Vol.17, No. 2, Spring, pp. 39-85; http://www.mises.org/journals/jls/17_2/17_2_3.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2004. “Are Alienability and the Apriori of Argument Logically Incompatible?” Dialogue, Vol. 1, No. 1. http://www.uni-svishtov.bg/dialog/2004/256gord6.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2005. “Ayn Rand and Austrian Economics: Two Peas in a Pod.” The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies. Vol. 6, No. 2, Spring, pp. 259-269

Block, Walter E. 2006. “Epstein on alienation: a rejoinder” International Journal of Social Economics; Vol. 33, Nos. 3-4, pp. 241-260

Block, Walter E. 2007A. “Secession,” Dialogue. No. 4; pp. 1-14;  http://www.uni-svishtov.bg/dialog/2007/4.07.WB.pdf

Block, Walter E. 2007B. “Alienability: Reply to Kuflik.” Humanomics Vol. 23, No. 3, pp. 117-136; http://www.emeraldinsight.com/Insight/viewContentItem.do;jsessionid=0685BBB744173274A5E7CE3803132413?contentType=Article&contentId=1626605

Block, Walter E. 2009A. “Yes, Sell Rivers! And Make Legal Some Slave Contracts” The Tyee. July 25; http://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2009/07/24/SellRivers/

Block, Walter E. 2009B. “Privatizing Rivers and Voluntary Slave Contracts” July 27;


Block, Walter E. January 26, 2013. Podcast with Stephan Kinsella on voluntary slavery, debtor’s prisons; http://www.stephankinsella.com/paf-podcast/kol004-interview-with-walter-block-on-voluntary-slavery/https://archive.lewrockwell.com/blog/lewrw/archives/132588.html; Wenzel: http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2013/02/why-walter-block-and-stephan-kinsella.html

Block, Walter E. 2014. “A Collection of Essays on Libertarian Jurisprudence: Alienability, once again; a libertarian theory of contracts.” Saint Louis University Law Journal; Vol. 58, No. 2, Winter, pp. 547-554

Block, Walter E. 2015. “On slavery and libertarianism.” Journal of Economic and Social Thought. Vol. 2, Issue 3, September, pp. 161-174; www.kspjournals.org


Lester, Jan Clifford. 2000. Escape from Leviathan. St. Martin’s Press. (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0312234163/qid%3D989845939/107-8070279-6411737).

Nozick, Robert. 1974. Anarchy, State and Utopia, New York: Basic Books

Philmore, J. 1982. “THE LIBERTARIAN CASE FOR SLAVERY.” The Philosophical Forum 14, no. 1 (Fall): 43-58; http://cog.kent.edu/lib/Philmore1/Philmore1.htm

Reparations for coercive slavery:

Alston and Block, 2007; Block, 1993, 2001, 2002, 2019, 2014, 2020A, 2020B; Block and Yeatts, 1999-2000; Crepelle and Block, 2017; Nouveau and Block, 2020.

Alston, Wilton D. and Walter E. Block. 2007. “Reparations, Once Again.” Human Rights Review, Vol. 9, No. 3, September, pp. 379-392; http://tinyurl.com/2b75fl

Block, Walter E. 1993. “Malcolm X,” Fraser Forum, January, pp. 18-19; http://mises.org/Community/forums/t/5361.aspx

Block, Walter E. 2001. “The Moral Dimensions of Poverty, Entitlements and Theft,” The Journal of Markets and Morality, Vol. 4, No. 1, pp. 83-93; http://www.acton.org/publicat/m_and_m/2001_spring/block.htmlhttp://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=922087http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CCcQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.marketsandmorality.com%2Findex.php%2Fmandm%2Farticle%2Fdownload%2F587%2F577&ei=lBn9UuLIOtDOkQe1toHwBw&usg=AFQjCNF2MZ5XoFKKMF5UcOfOT5Kv-HQgZA&sig2=VVYWZhyl0ZmAWRAKXtkxWw; Search for “Walter Block” under “Authors” here: http://www.marketsandmorality.com/index.php/mandm/search

Block, Walter E. 2002A. “On Reparations to Blacks for Slavery,” Human Rights Review, Vol. 3, No. 4, July-September, pp. 53-73;


(David Horowitz, Randall Robinson)

Block, Walter E. 2020B. “Return of Stolen Property: A Libertarian Case for Reparations.” December 18; https://www.theepochtimes.com/return-of-stolen-property-a-libertarian-case-for-reparations_3177301.html

Block, Walter E. 2019. “Return of Stolen Property: A Libertarian Case for Reparations.” December 23; https://www.theepochtimes.com/return-of-stolen-property-a-libertarian-case-for-reparations_3177301.html

Block, Walter E. 2020. “Reparations.” February 16;


Block, Walter E. and Guillermo Yeatts. 1999-2000. “The Economics and Ethics of Land Reform: A Critique of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace’s ‘Toward a Better Distribution of Land: The Challenge of Agrarian Reform,’” Journal of Natural Resources and Environmental Law, Vol. 15, No. 1, pp. 37-69; http://www.walterblock.com/publications/ethics_land_reform.pdf

Crepelle, Adam and Walter E. Block. 2017. “Property Rights and Freedom:  The Keys to Improving Life in Indian Country.” Washington & Lee Journal of Civil Rights and Social Justice; Vol. 23, Issue 2, Article, 3, pp. 314-342; http://scholarlycommons.law.wlu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1435&context=crsjhttp://scholarlycommons.law.wlu.edu/crsj/vol23/iss2/3/

Houma Indian

Nouveau, Lucas and Walter E. Block. 2020. “A comment on reparations for slavery.” Libertas: Segunda Epoca; http://www.journallibertas.com/online-first.html

Best regards,


Letter 5

Dear Jim:

You’re a sweetie pie, as Murray Rothbard might have said. Thanks for trying to make me feel better about my laziness. I guess I’m an intellectual masochist. I still regret not reprising our Libertarians for Trump effort in 2019. But I’m very grateful for your letter.

Best regards,


From: jmwj

Sent: Tuesday, November 10, 2020 3:15 PM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: Your 11/9/20 WSJ Column

Dear Dr. Block:

I enjoyed reading your 11/9/20 WSJ column. However, I don’t believe that you should beat yourself up for not telling 2020 voters when they should and shouldn’t vote for the Libertarian candidate.

Everyone who voted for president in 2020 knew that the winner would be either Trump or Biden. If they really wanted their votes to count toward determining the winner, they would vote for one of those two. The votes for other candidates wouldn’t affect the presidential winner. All voters knew that. Therefore, voters for other candidates decided that they weren’t going to vote for Trump or Biden and their vote would not affect  the winning and losing totals for the two contenders. Their alternative to how they voted was to not vote for a presidential nominee. Therefore, I believe the way to look at votes for other candidates is not that if they had voted for Trump, Trump would have won. They didn’t want to vote for Trump and they weren’t going to vote for Trump. If one wanted to look at the other votes from a Trump perspective to make themselves feel better, those voters didn’t vote for Biden either.

I believe I’m right and I hope my way of looking at the situation makes you feel better.

Sincerely yours,

Jim Williams

Letter 6

Dear Mike:

Thanks for your support.

Best regards,


From: Mike Holmes

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 6:15 PM

To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Nice WSJ opinion item today


Just wanted to thank you for your WSJ op-ed today.

Now we know who to blame for Biden’s victory!


We can now resume hating almost everything the Federal govt. does w/o any reservations. Situation normal.

Thanks again.

Mike Holmes

Katy TX

Letter 7

Dear Jay:

Thanks. Good point.

Best regards,


From: Jay Lynn

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 8:45 AM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: WSJ article

Mr. Block,

I very much enjoyed your article in this morning‘s Wall Street Journal. You have been given a second chance in the runoff elections in Georgia. I pray you take advantage of it.

Thanks so much,


Letter 8

Dear Christine:

Thanks for sharing your thoughts with me. We’ll have to agree to disagree, at least for the moment. In my view, this isn’t over until the Supreme Court weighs in

Best regards,


From: Christine Brode

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 1:47 PM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: WSJ opinion 11/9/20

Mr Block,

It seems that lying with the intent to inflame other old white guys is pro forma for Republicans, but YOU LOST AND DECENCY WON! Time to stop beating the dead (orange) horse and try to find the long lost honor of the GOP.


Christine Brode

Letter 9

Dear Eric:

Thanks for your support on this.

Best regards,


From: Eric Jones

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 10:41 AM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: Re: WSJ OpEd

Dear Dr. Block,

I appreciated your article in today’s WSJ regarding Libertarians as the spoiler.  For years I have described myself as a “Pragmatic Libertarian.”  My dad first laughed at me when I articulated that position, as though I was experiencing an identity crisis of sorts.  However, this election highlights the pragmatism I personally try to apply.

I live in Colorado, which in the past decade or so is decidedly more blue than purple.  Still, I realize that I am going to be governed by one political party or the other.  In the absence of ranked voting, I view my vote as a binary choice and wish other Libertarians would consider some pragmatism mixed in with idealism.

Again, thank you for sharing your thoughts.  I wish you and your family well.


Eric Jones

Letter 10

Dear Christian:

Hey, this proves we’re both libertarians! We disagree!!

This is my answer to you:

Block, Walter E. 2016.  “Libertarians for Trump.” March 15; https://www.lewrockwell.com/2016/03/walter-e-block/libertarians-trump/

Block, Walter E. 2016.  “Libertarians for Trump, Revisited.” March 29; https://www.lewrockwell.com/2016/03/walter-e-block/whats-libertarians-trump/

Best regards,


From: Christian Tabedzki

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 11:10 AM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: Re: “Libertarians Spoil the Election”

Good afternoon Prof. Block,

I read your column and disagree. Simply put, many Americans in the “swing states” could not vote in good conscience for the Republican nominee this year. Left with the choice between voting for their ideology and voting for the Democratic nominee, many chose the former. The Republican nominee has not provided an adequate response to the pandemic and has shown blatant disregard for the coronavirus (please look at the first time the Republican nominee wore a mask in public and when he endorsed it as well as his comments when the CDC had announced the voluntary guidelines). Additionally, the nominee did not even provide a feeble attempt to mitigate the racial tensions after the death of Mr. Floyd. The Republican nominee has shown his incompetence and the Libertarian nominee was more appealing than both the Republican nominee and the Democratic nominee.

If you believe the Libertarian voters spoiled the vote, perhaps the Republicans should’ve offered a stronger candidate.


Mr. Tabedzki

Letter 11

Dear Paul:

Hey, Trump didn’t lose yet! Let’s see what the Supreme Court says about all of this electoral fraud.

Best regards,


From: Paul Petrone

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 9:33 AM

To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Subject: Re: WSJ Post

Fair on abortion – although I cannot imagine a true libertarian being against gay marriage. Most libertarians would argue that marriage shouldn’t be a government issue at all.

Either way, the bigger point is that Trump was far from being a libertarian. He was against many things I’m for. It’s his own fault he lost the election, he simply wasn’t a good enough candidate – same was true for Gore in 2000.

On Nov 9, 2020, at 9:38 AM, Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu> wrote:

Dear Paul:

But immigration, abortion, even gay marriage (albeit to a lesser degree) are highly contentious issues amonst libertarians.

For example, Ron Paul is pro life, Murray Rothbard, pro choice. I favor open borders, Hans Hoppe opposes them. Many religious libertarians oppose gay marriage

Best regards,


From: Paul Petrone

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 7:38 AM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: WSJ Post

The idea that us Libertarians should fall in line and vote for a Republican simply because you want us to is ridiculous.

Republicans generally stand for less economic intervention, although Trump has been a strong supporter of increase immigration restrictions (not the wall, but limiting visas) which flies in the face of that. They also are for the war on drugs, fought against gay marriage, and continue to fight against abortion, all restrictions of liberty.

Democrats favor more economic restrictions, and yet favor freedom on drugs, marriage, social issues, etc..

Here’s the bigger point – both parties are broken. We shouldn’t vote for the best of two evils, we should vote who we think is best. And there’s nothing more annoying than people who cry for a vote they don’t deserve.


Letter 12

Dear Eric:

Thanks. Excellent points.

Best regards,


From: eric gutterson

Sent: Monday, November 09, 2020 8:08 AM

To: wblock@loyno.edu

Subject: A new Libertarian

Dr. Block,

I read with interest your Op-Ed in the Wall Street Journal  this morning. In particular, I was heartened to know that you advised a conservative voter in a deep Blue state to vote for the Libertarian candidate (the “porcupine”) as opposed to throwing your vote away.

I live in Massachusetts and voted for Jo Jorgenson because I realized the Libertarian party stands for what is most important for me: smaller government, less regulation and a return to true government by the people as originally envisioned by the Founders. Washington and its career politicians have lost contact with our country. We cannot return to our Colonial roots, but we can find ways to reconnect Washington with the country.

Unless something changes radically in the next four years, the chances are good I will cast my second Libertarian vote. Who knows, the porcupine may have begun to morph into a bobcat by then.

Eric Gutterson

Westwood, MA


3:01 am on November 12, 2020

Please follow and like us:

Claudio Grass Interviews Rafi Farber on the Gold Standard

Rafi Farber

Sent: Friday, November 06, 2020 7:00 AM

To: walter block <wblock@loyno.edu>;

Subject: My Interview with Claudio Grass

Claudio Grass interviewed me last week. There are similarities to my Vote Ron Paul and let me People Go piece 9 years ago in terms of tone and some substance.


Rafi is a many times co author of mine. Here is but one of our co authorships:

Walter E. Block and Rafi Farber. 2014. “On Circumcision.” July 7; http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2014/07/walter-block-and-rafi-farber-on.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+economicpolicyjournal%2FKpwH+%28EconomicPolicyJournal.com%29

Here is something I wrote about him:

Block, Walter E. 2017. “Calling Upon All Jews: Vote for Rafi Farber for the Knesset.” July 5; https://www.lewrockwell.com/2017/07/walter-e-block/calling-all-jews/

Dear :

Best regards,



2:55 am on November 12, 2020

Please follow and like us:
Follow by Email