Many Americans who voted for Barry Goldwater in the last election are justifiably concerned that our traditional liberties have been much eroded by the unwarranted growth of the federal government, and especially of the executive branch at the expense of the other branches. As a democrat I cannot help feeling the same deep concern. These libertarian conservatives see all too clearly an evil which those on the left very often fail to take adequate note of.

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John Oliver, as usual, is amazing here, following up on a terrific article in the Washington Post.

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I’m honored to have the lead essay on Cato Unbound this month. In the essay, I lay out what I take to be a genuinely liberal approach to religion in politics, one that is neither fully libertarian, conservative or secular progress. Some excerpts:

The role of religion in politics is to preserve religious liberty against an overreaching state and encourage religious contributions to the ratification of laws that promote justice and the common good. Religion belongs in politics primarily as defense, rather than offense, restricting state power rather than extending it.

And:

The classical liberal approach to religion and politics, then, avoids both overt and covert establishmentarianism. It bars efforts to give a particular religion, or even religion generally, a hallowed place in the law, while simultaneously resisting efforts to remove religion from the public square. Given its focus on restricting unjustified coercion, my approach does not make an idol of politics and does not insist that shared public deliberation is the sine qua non of a free, democratic society.

Read it all.

I have great commentators: Michael Shermer, Patrick Deneen and Maggie Garrett.

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