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Lew Rockwell
Born Llewellyn Harrison Rockwell, Jr.
July 1, 1944 (1944-07-01) (age 65)
Boston, Massachusetts
Nationality United States
Occupation Political commentator, activist, blogger
Religious beliefs Roman Catholic

Llewellyn Harrison Rockwell, Jr. (born July 1, 1944, Boston), widely known as Lew Rockwell, is an American libertarian political commentator, activist, proponent of the Austrian School of economics, and chairman of the Ludwig von Mises Institute.


Life and work

Rockwell is a Roman Catholic and has a degree in English from Tufts University. He served as Ron Paul's congressional chief of staff from 1978 to 1982.[1][2] He has maintained a working relationship with Paul over the years, as a contributing editor to "The Ron Paul Investment Letter"[3]; as a consultant to Paul's 1988 Libertarian Party campaign for President of the United States[4]; and as vice-chair of the exploratory committee for Paul's spirited run for the 1992 Republican Party nomination for president.[5]

He is the author of Speaking of Liberty, an anthology of editorials which were originally published on his web site along with transcripts from some of his speaking engagements. Rockwell and the Ludwig von Mises Institute together publish the Journal of Libertarian Studies.

Ludwig von Mises Institute

In 1982, Rockwell founded the Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama and was its president until the summer of 2009, when he transitioned to the position of Chairman of the Board.[6] He also is Vice President of the Center for Libertarian Studies in Burlingame, California and publisher of the political weblog

Burton Blumert, Rockwell, economist and philosopher David Gordon, and Murray Rothbard.

Rockwell was closely associated with his teacher and colleague Murray Rothbard until Rothbard's death in 1995. Rockwell's political ideology, like Rothbard's in his later years, combines a form of anarcho-capitalism with cultural conservatism and the Austrian School of economics. He also advocates federalist concepts as a means of promoting freedom from central government, and also advocates secession for the same political decentralist reasons. Rockwell has called environmentalism "[a]n ideology as pitiless and Messianic as Marxism."[7]


In 1985, he was named a contributing editor to Conservative Digest.[8] During the 1990s Rothbard, Rockwell and others described their views as paleolibertarian[9], but Rockwell no longer uses the term to describe his ideas.[10] Jean Hardisty, founder of Political Research Associates, wrote in 1999 that Rockwell was one of the most influential proponents of the paleoconservative faction of "right-wing libertarianism."[11]

Lew Rockwell's web site features a selection of articles, including opposition to war and imperialism along with occasional articles criticizing the presidency of Abraham Lincoln.[12] The site also carries essays which argue against the participation of the United States in the Second World War, speculation about an end of the United States as a cohesive union and assertions the Western world is threatened by an intersection of fascism and socialism alike as politicians and states centralize their power.[13][14][15] These writings are sometimes controversial and have brought harsh criticism from some on the political right.[16][17] As of August 21, 2008, his web site also provides a daily podcast on weekdays featuring interviews with scholars, including many affiliated with the Mises Institute.

Ron Paul newsletter controversy

On January 16, 2008 libertarian publication Reason claimed "a half-dozen longtime libertarian activists—including some still close to Paul" had identified Rockwell as the "chief ghostwriter" of several controversial, anonymously written articles published in Ron Paul newsletters from "roughly 1989 to 1994." According to Reason, "Rockwell has denied responsibility for the newsletters' contents to The New Republic's Jamie Kirchick." Rockwell "has characterized discussion of the newsletters as 'hysterical smears aimed at political enemies.'"[18]



  • Speaking of Liberty (2003; online e-book) ISBN 0-945466-38-2
  • The Left, The Right, and The State (2008; online e-book) ISBN 978-1-933550-20-6


  • Man, Economy, and Liberty: Essays in Honor of Murray N. Rothbard (with Walter Block) (1986; online e-book) ISBN 99911-786-2-7
  • The Free Market Reader (1988; online e-book)ISBN 0-945466-02-1
  • The Economics of Liberty (1990; online e-book) ISBN 0-945466-08-0
  • The Gold Standard: Perspectives in the Austrian School (1992; online e-book), ISBN 0-945466-11-0
  • Murray N. Rothbard: In Memoriam (1995; online e-book) ISBN 0945466196
  • The Irrepressible Rothbard (2000; online e-book - Rockwell's introduction) ISBN 1-883959-02-0


  1. ^ Berlau, John. Now playing right field - Rep. Ron Paul - Interview Insight on the News. 10 February 1997.
  2. ^ Hayes, Christopher, The Nation, Ron Paul's Roots, 6 December 2007, retrieved 14 January 2008
  3. ^ "The Ron Paul Investment Letter," Volume 3, Number 3, March 1987
  4. ^ "Campaign staffs announced", LPNEWS, May/June 1987, 10
  5. ^ Burton Blumert, "Ron Paul for President Exploratory Committee" fundraising letter, October 1, 1991.
  6. ^ About the Mises Institute page at Ludwig von Mises Institute website.
  7. ^ Rockwell, L. H., Jr. (1990). "An anti-environmentalist manifesto." From The Right, Quarterly II, 1(6), 1. (newsletter of Patrick J. Buchanan), p. 1; Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr. Rockwell's Anti-Environmentalist Manifesto, May 1, 2000 version published by
  8. ^ Berlet, Chip. The Write Stuff: U. S. Serial Print Culture from Conservatives out to Neonazis, Library Trends - Volume 56, Number 3, Winter 2008, pp. 570-600.
  9. ^ Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr. "The Case for Paleo-libertarianism" in Liberty magazine, January, 1990, 34-38.
  10. ^ Do You Consider Yourself a Libertarian?, Kenny Johnsson interviews Lew Rockwell for The Liberal Post, as posted on LewRockwell.Com, May 25, 2007.
  11. ^ Hardisty, Jean V. 1999. Mobilizing Resentment: Conservative Resurgence from the John Birch Society to the Promise Keepers. Boston: Beacon, pp. 170-178.
  12. ^ Lincoln archive [1]
  13. ^ Rogers, Mike. "Dying For the Emperor? No Way." 12 October 2005. [2]
  14. ^ Gonella, Jason. "The Decline and Fall of the United States Empire." 9 December 2004 [3]
  15. ^ DiLorenzo, Thomas J. "Economic Fascism" 23 November 2004. [4]
  16. ^ Laksin, Jacob. "The Right’s Left Turn." FrontPageMag. 5 October 2005. [5]
  17. ^ Goldberg, Jonah. "Farewell, Lew Rockwell: The final word." National Review Online. 7 March 2001. [6]
  18. ^ Sanchez, Julian and David Weigel (2008-01-16). "Who Wrote Ron Paul's Newsletters?". Reason. Retrieved 2008-01-16.  

External links


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote


Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr. (born 1 July 1944), widely known as Lew Rockwell, is an American libertarian political commentator, economist of the Austrian School and activist.


  • The right path to health-care reform is the market path (no subsidies, no monopolies such as drug patents, no licensure, no anything) that tends toward universal distribution at very low prices and relentless improvement in service. The wrong path is to make health care run the same way as the post office. Obama seems to favor the latter path, even though he admits that it is the least well-performing one. This is surely the definition of fanaticism. If the mobs aren't angry, they should be.
    • August 13, 2009 [1]

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