Apparently the slow boat from Oxford arrived at Ellis Island a few days early: as of today, my new book Rationalism, Pluralism, and Freedom is available for sale in the US.
Amazon (15% discount) amzn.to/1osWYDC
OUP (30% discount with code ASFLYQ6 , plus, according to two reports, an additional 10% discount for first-time customers at OUP’s website– that takes the price down to $30 + $5 shipping within the US.)
While this isn’t the main point of the book, one upshot of it that may be of interest to BHLers is that the difference between classical/ market liberalism and modern/ egalitarian liberalism is not the only, and in many ways not the most important, division within the liberal tradition. There are questions about centralization and decentralization, freedom and unfreedom in the intermediate and local spheres, that have to be faced by market liberals and egalitarian liberals in much the same way.
As between Lord Acton and John Stuart Mill, Acton was probably slightly friendlier to market distribution than Mill eventually became– but it’s hard to know, as he wrote little about economic questions. There are, however, vital points of disagreement between them, liberals though they both were, about where threats to freedom were socially to be found, which institutional arrangements might balance dangers and which aggravate them. It’s that disagreement that I emphasize in the book– and market liberals and egalitarian liberals both inherit the dilemma of that debate, in a way that we share with each other but not with, e.g., conservatives or socialists. In that sense, I mean to make a contribution to the alternative fusionist project (market liberalism and egalitarian liberalism, rather than the Cold War Meyerist fusionism of libertarianism and conservatism) that has been a recurring theme here at BHL.
More to say soon.