Murray Rothbard

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Murray Newton Rothbard
Murray Newton Rothbard (March 2, 1926 - January 7, 1995) was an American economist and political theorist belonging to the Austrian School of Economics who helped define modern libertarianism and anarcho-capitalism.

In the course of his life, Rothbard was associated with a number of political thinkers and movements. During the early 1950s, he studied with the great Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises and began working for the William Volker Fund. During the late 1950s, Rothbard was briefly an intimate of Ayn Rand and Nathaniel Branden, whom he would later criticize strongly. In the late 1960s, Rothbard advocated an alliance with the New Left anti-war movement, on the grounds that the conservative movement had been completely subsumed by the statist establishment. It was during this phase that he associated with Karl Hess and founded Left and Right: A Journal of Libertarian Thought with Leonard Liggio and George Resch.

During the 1970s and '80s, Rothbard was active in the Libertarian Party. He was frequently involved in the party's internal politics, allying himself with Justin Raimondo, Bill Evers, and Ron Paul, and clashing with Ed Crane and supporters of Russell Means. In 1989, Rothbard left the Libertarian Party and began building bridges to the post-Cold War right. He was the founding president of the conservative-libertarian John Randolph Club and supported the presidential campaign of Pat Buchanan in 1992. However, prior to his death in Manhattan of a heart attack, Rothbard had become disillusioned with the Buchanan movement.

In addition to his work on economics and political theory, Rothbard also wrote on economic history. He is one of the few economic authors who have studied and presented the pre-Smithian economic schools, such as the scholastics and the physiocrats. These are discussed in his unfinished, multi-volume work An Austrian Perspective on the History of Economic Thought. His other books include Man, Economy, and State (ISBN 0945466323), Power and Market, America's Great Depression, For a New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto (, The Ethics of Liberty (, and the essay "Sociology of the Ayn Rand Cult" [1] (

He was the academic vice president of the Ludwig von Mises Institute and the Center for Libertarian Studies, was a distinguished professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and edited the Rothbard-Rockwell Report with Lew Rockwell.

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