Is this a good time for freedom?
By Amy Willis
Is nationalism, for all its flaws, to preferred over a system of global governance? This week’s EconTalk guest, Yoram Hazony, thinks the answer is “yes.” He argues that the nation-state cannot be justified on individualist grounds; the much lauded Enlightenment trinity of Hobbes, Locke, and Rousseau only leads us astray. Instead, Hazony argues, we need to look at the way we organize socially though a different lens. Host Russ Roberts says Hazony has changed his mind.
1- What historical event does Hazony refer to as “the first Brexit,” and why does he argue it is important in the evolution of the nation-state?
2- What does a nation-state need to survive, according to Hazony? Hazony argues that what Roberts calls the “libertarian vision” (and Hazony calls the “neutral state”) of the nation-state is insufficient, even though Hazony shares the enthusiasm for the free market. He says, “… just because that works in economics doesn’t mean that you have now described what is necessary for a nation to survive through time.” So, what’s missing?
3- What does Hazony mean by “mutual loyalty,” and why does he consider this the “strongest force in all of political reality? In what ways does Hazony think our mutual loyalties have disintegrated, and what does he propose as antidote?
4- Can freedom(s) exist without government? How does your answer to this question compare with Hazony’s?
5- What does Hazony suggest the future will hold for the European Union? To what extent do you find his prediction reasonable? Can the EU rightly be considered an “imperial order” as Hazony describes?