War and Peace

About this Collection

Wars can be fought to preserve freedom, and they can also be tragically destructive of it. The way that human societies have made war and sought peace throughout our existence provides a useful study for considering how best to keep and protect the freedoms we have, and how to gain the ones we want.

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American Anti-Interventionist Tradition: A Bibliographical Essay by Justus Doenecke

Related Links:

Source: Bibliographical Essay in Literature of Liberty, Summer 1981, vol. 4, No. 2

BOLL 2: Vicesimus Knox, “Universal Peace” (1793)

Vicesimus Knox (author)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. This one comes…

BOLL 3: Ludwig von Mises, “Economics of War” (1949)

Ludwig von Mises (author)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. This one comes…

BOLL 11: W.G. Sumner, “The Conquest of the United States by Spain” (1898)

William Graham Sumner (author)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. This one comes…

BOLL 31: Samuel anoints Saul the First King of Israel (c. 1,000 B.C.)

Samuel (author)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. A thematic list…

BOLL 38: Daniel Webster, “Speech on the Draft” (1814)

Daniel Webster (author)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. A thematic list…

THE READING ROOM

BOLL 11: W.G. Sumner, “The Conquest of the United States by Spain” (1898)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. This one comes from a lecture given by William Graham Sumner, “The Conquest of the United States by…

THE READING ROOM

BOLL 2: Vicesimus Knox, “Universal Peace” (1793)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. This one comes from Vicesimus Knox’s sermon “The Prospect of Perpetual and Universal Peace” which he…

THE READING ROOM

BOLL 3: Ludwig von Mises, “Economics of War” (1949)

This is part of “The Best of the Online Library of Liberty” which is a collection of some of the most important material in the OLL. This one comes from Ludwig von Mises’ book Human Action which was published soon after the end of…
Liberty Matters: Hugo Grotius on War and the State (March 2014)

Fernando R. Tesón (author)

In this online discussion, Fernando R. Tesón explores what Grotius thought about the proper relationship between the laws of nature and the laws of nations, what limits (if any) can be legitimately and rightly placed on the conduct…

Quotes

War & Peace

Adam Smith observes that the true costs of war remain hidden from the taxpayers because they are sheltered in the metropole far from the fighting and instead of increasing taxes the government pays for the war by increasing the national debt (1776)

Adam Smith

War & Peace

Adam Smith on the Sympathy one feels for those Vanquished in a battle rather than for the Victors (1762)

Adam Smith

Revolution

Adams and Jefferson reflect on the Revolution and the future of liberty (1823)

John Adams

War & Peace

Alexander Hamilton warns of the danger to civil society and liberty from a standing army since “the military state becomes elevated above the civil” (1787)

Alexander Hamilton

Food & Drink

Bastiat, the 1830 Revolution, and the Spilling of Wine not Blood (1830)

Frédéric Bastiat

War & Peace

Benjamin Constant on the dangers to liberty posed by the military spirit (1815)

Benjamin Constant

War & Peace

Cobden on the principle of non-intervention in the affairs of other countries (1859)

Richard Cobden

Parties & Elections

Cobden reminds the Liberals in Parliament that the motto of their party is “Economy, Retrenchment, and Reform!” (1862)

Richard Cobden

War & Peace

Cobden urges the British Parliament not to be the “Don Quixotes of Europe” using military force to right the wrongs of the world (1854)

Richard Cobden

War & Peace

Daniel Webster thunders that the introduction of conscription would be a violation of the constitution, an affront to individual liberty, and an act of unrivaled despotism (1814)

Daniel Webster

War & Peace

J.M. Keynes reflected on that “happy age” of international commerce and freedom of travel that was destroyed by the cataclysm of the First World War (1920)

John Maynard Keynes

War & Peace

James Madison on the need for the people to declare war and for each generation, not future generations, to bear the costs of the wars they fight (1792)

James Madison

War & Peace

John Bright calls British foreign policy “a gigantic system of (welfare) for the aristocracy” (1858)

John Bright

War & Peace

John Bright denounces the power of the war party in England (1878)

John Bright

War & Peace

John Bright on war as all the horrors, atrocities, crimes, and sufferings of which human nature on this globe is capable (1853)

John Bright

War & Peace

John Trenchard identifies who will benefit from any new war “got up” in Italy: princes, courtiers, jobbers, and pensioners, but definitely not the ordinary taxpayer (1722)

John Trenchard

War & Peace

Kant believed that citizens must give their free consent via their representatives to every separate declaration of war (1790)

Immanuel Kant

Taxation

Knox on how the people during wartime are cowered into submission and pay their taxes “without a murmur” (1795)

Vicesimus Knox

War & Peace

Ludwig von Mises laments the passing of the Age of Limited Warfare and the coming of Mass Destruction in the Age of Statism and Conquest (1949)

Ludwig von Mises

War & Peace

Lysistrata’s clever plan to end the war between Athens and Sparta (411 BC)

Aristophanes

War & Peace

Madison argued that war is the major way by which the executive office increases its power, patronage, and taxing power (1793)

James Madison

War & Peace

Milton warns Parliament’s general Fairfax that justice must break free from violence if “endless war” is to be avoided (1648)

John Milton

Socialism & Interventionism

Mises and the Emergence of Etatism in Germany (1944)

Ludwig von Mises

Socialism & Interventionism

Mises on how price controls lead to socialism (1944)

Ludwig von Mises

Class

Molinari on the elites who benefited from the State of War (1899)

Gustave de Molinari

Presidents, Kings, Tyrants, & Despots

Montesquieu states that the Roman Empire fell because the costs of its military expansion introduced corruption and the loyalty of its soldiers was transferred from the City to its generals (1734)

Charles Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu

Literature & Music

On Achilles' new shield Vulcan depicts the two different types of cities which humans can build on earth; one based on peace and the rule of law; the other based on war, killing, and pillage (900 BC)

Homer

Free Trade

Richard Cobden on how free trade would unite mankind in the bonds of peace (1850)

Richard Cobden

War & Peace

Robert Nisbet on the Shock the Founding Fathers would feel if they could see the current size of the Military Establishment and the National Government (1988)

Robert A. Nisbet

War & Peace

St. Thomas Aquinas discusses the three conditions for a just war (1265-74)

St. Thomas Aquinas

War & Peace

Sumner and the Conquest of the United States by Spain (1898)

William Graham Sumner

War & Peace

The 3rd Day of Christmas: Erasmus stands against war and for peace on earth (16th century)

Desiderius Erasmus

War & Peace

The City of War and the City of Peace on Achilles' new shield (900 BC)

Homer

Presidents, Kings, Tyrants, & Despots

Thomas Gordon on how people are frightened into giving up their liberties (1722)

Thomas Gordon

Money & Banking

Tom Paine on the "Decline and Fall of the English System of Finance" (1796)

Thomas Paine

War & Peace

Trenchard on the dangers posed by a standing army (1698)

John Trenchard

War & Peace

Vicesimus Knox on how the aristocracy and the “spirit of despotism” use the commemoration of the war dead for their own aims (1795)

Vicesimus Knox

War & Peace

William Graham Sumner denounced America’s war against Spain and thought that “war, debt, taxation, diplomacy, a grand governmental system, pomp, glory, a big army and navy, lavish expenditures, political jobbery” would result in imperialsm (1898)

William Graham Sumner

Notes About This Collection

See also the extracts, chapters, and introductions in the War and Peace section of the Ideas page.