Originally Posted by Jon Lyrik
I don't think it's fair at all to compare it to classical liberalism. At least classical liberalism was liberating in its day, or tried to be. Libertarianism forgets the critiques socialism gave for liberal democratic capitalism ever happened or were even valid.
Who even knows what an American "liberal" is? It's certainly not the classical definition of the word.
I respectfully suggest the following works:
John Locke, Second Treatise of Government
John Stuart Mill, On Liberty
Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations
FA Hayek, Road to Serfdom
They all proceed from the very basic concept that my right to swing my fist ends at your nose. It's the most basic, clear definition of freedom of which I know and it's a prevailing thread that you can find through almost all classical liberal philosophers starting with Locke in the 17th century and moving on through economists like Milton Friedman in the 20th. That very concept is also the basis for our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution.