The Relative Importance of Social and Economic Freedoms

The sad passing of Whitney Houston has brought many mentions in the press about her battle with cocaine addiction.  It is, also sadly, not a new story; many celebrities have soared to the heights of popularity, only to have their lives end tragically and entwined with drugs.  Stories of stars such as Ms. Houston frequently include abuse of both illegal and legal drugs, although, as with Michael Jackson, even the legal drugs are abused in amounts common citizens could not obtain.  That said, these two stars, and many others, were exercising their liberties in consuming the drugs -- they were not killed by forced administration of the drugs. The circumstances of Ms. Houston's demise has me pondering a conversation I had recently with a fellow libertarian, regarding the relative importance of social versus economic freedom.  This acquaintance (heavily influenced, in my opinion, by working for more than twenty years at a public university) feels that social freedoms,...(Read Full Post)