5 Essential Books That Every New Libertarian Should Read

By Mason Mohon | @mohonofficial

Books are one of life’s greatest gifts. These bound packages of paper hold knowledge, wisdom, and depth of thought that is difficult to capture in a blog post or news article. The ideas you can get from a book can and will go deeper than any other source of media.

Because of that, it is critical that any Libertarian reads books that will further and intensify their intellectual development, especially those that are first dipping their toes into Libertarianism and Libertarian philosophy. So, I would like to present books that I believe will only help one’s ideological journey.

The utility of these books is based on my personal reading experience, not on some sort of objective measurement. These are also in no particular order.

The Revolution by Ron Paul


This book was my first stepping-stone into the realm of Libertarianism. It eloquently outlines the ailments of modern American politics, the two-party system, interventionism, drug policy, and government financial control. The Revolution is a great primer that will both familiarize the reader with Libertarian ethics and introduce them to many other resources for intellectual furtherance.

The Revolution can be purchased here.

The Libertarian Mind by David Boaz


David Boaz’s book is similar to Dr. Paul’s in that it covers Libertarian ideals in broad strokes, yet The Libertarian Mind is much less tied to the times. It goes further in-depth on many issues and offers a bit more information on the historical development of Libertarianism. It draws from many facets of the Libertarian belief system, meaning the reader will get much more exposure to many of the ideas of various diverse Libertarians.

The Libertarian Mind can be purchased here.

Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt


Henry Hazlitt’s classic economic work explains clearly many fallacies of historical leftist and Keynesian economic ideology. Starting with a framework as to how to view economics, one by one Economics in One Lesson tears down the fallacies that have historically polluted public policy. From broken windows to wartorn countries, readers will discover that many policies that seek to “stimulate” the economy are merely short-sighted visions of economic direction.

Economics in One Lesson can be purchased here.

Excuse Me, Professor edited by Lawrence Reed


Excuse Me, Professor is a collection of essays by economists across the country that seek to dispell many myths that dominate contemporary university teachings. For anyone tired of hearing their professors lament over how the free market oppresses the worker and how FDR was Christ-reincarnate, this book is a must-read. It covers a plethora of issues, challenging the mainstream opinion on each and every one.

Excuse Me, Professor can be purchased here.

Choice, Cooperation, Enterprise, and Human Action by Robert Murphy


Robert Murphy’s economic work is a sort of TL;DR of Ludwig von Mises’s economic classic Human Action. Mises’s original work is daunting, sitting at over 900 pages of complex Austrian economic reasoning, yet it remains a base for Libertarian economic thinking. Many have difficulty reading it, or are too scared to read it in the first place. To fill this void comes Murphy’s Choice, which covers most of the same information, but in a simpler and much easier to read method.

Choice can be purchased here.

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