Free Thoughts from

Free Thoughts from

United Kingdom

A show about libertarianism and the ideas that influence it. Hosted by Aaron Ross Powell and Trevor Burrus.


Markets in Everything?  

Jason Brennan and Peter Jaworski think that anything you’re allowed to do for free, you should be able to do for money. That means things like buying and selling kidneys, children, sex, grades; even waiting in line. Are they right?

Lessons from a Bank-Robbing Law Professor  

Shon Hopwood joins us this week to tell about his journey from bank robber to federal prisoner to U.S. Supreme Court practicioner and Georgetown law professor.

Private Schooling for Everyone  

Robert Luddy joins us this week to talk about his ventures as the founder of several successful private schools in and around Raleigh, North Carolina. Could private education supplant public schooling?

Is Liberalism in Danger?  

Jacob T. Levy says that the collapse of trust in institutional norms is what’s responsible for a new era of Trump-style authoritarian, “closed-society” populist politics here in America and around the globe.

Stories from Putin's Economist  

Andrei Illarionov joins us this week to tell us about growing up and studying economics in the Soviet Union, and about the years he spent as an economic policy advisor to Vladimir Putin.

Nothing Is Secure  

Julian Sanchez joins us this week for a discussion about online privacy in the era of mass data collection. When we’re online, what kind of data are we creating, and who’s watching us?

The True Causes of Mass Incarceration  

John Pfaff joins us this week to talk about the United States’s unusually high rate of incarceration. How many Americans are in prison or in jail? What did they do to get there?

Why We're Too Complacent  

Tyler Cowen joins us this week to talk about the slowing pace of innovation and growth in the United States over the past few decades. Has American society become too complacent? What would a more dynamic society look like?

The War on Sex Work  

Elizabeth Nolan Brown joins us this week for a discussion about sex work. What’s the difference between sex trafficking and prostitution? How much sex trafficking is going on in the United States?

Introducing Liberty Chronicles, a New Podcast from  

We’re pleased to announce Liberty Chronicles, a new podcast from and the Cato Institute, hosted by Dr. Anthony Comegna.

Guantanamo Bay Is Still Open  

Andrew Turner joins us to talk about his experience being stationed at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in 2009 and 2010.

How Much Should We Worry About ISIS?  

Emma Ashford joins us this week to discuss the rise of the Islamic State. How is ISIS different from Al Qaeda and other terror groups? Does it pose an existential threat to the Western world?

Stuck in Political Nostalgia  

Yuval Levin joins us to talk about political nostalgia and American individualism. Why do the political right and left both seem to be stuck yearning for the 1950s and early 60s?

Can Anarchy Work?  

Peter T. Leeson joins us this week to discuss rational choice theory as it applies to self-governance. What happens in the absence of government?

The CIA Listens to Free Thoughts  

Patrick G. Eddington joins us this week to tell us about the history of the Central Intelligence Agency, how the CIA operates, and what the new Wikileaks revelations mean for our privacy online.

Must You Obey Government?  

Aaron and Trevor have a discussion about the political authority of the state. Should one obey the government? Is there a compelling reason to?

The Cato Institute at 40  

Peter Goettler joins us this week to talk about his role at the Cato Institute, Cato’s history of 40 years of advancing liberty, and what’s next for public policy organizations more generally and for Cato specifically.

How Economists Think About Health Care Economics  

Peter Van Doren joins us this week to talk about health care economics. How much should we spend on health care, and how would we know the answer to that question?

A Muslim Case for Liberty  

Mustafa Akyol joins us to talk about Islam. Is there a Muslim case for liberty? How has Islam traditionally treated the principles of political liberalism?

The Libertarian Student Movement  

Wolf von Laer joins us this week to talk about the movement for liberty on college campuses around the world.

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