Women’s History Month

The Cato Institute pays homage to Three Women Who Resurrected Classical Liberalism

 Mothers of the Libertarian Movement.

Isabel Paterson, Rose Wilder Lane, and Ayn Rand

For those of you who may not know it, Classical Liberalism, is the foundation upon which this country was founded.  The tennants of classical liberalism includes the importance of human rationality, individual property rights, natural rights, the protection of civil liberties, individual freedom from restraint, equality under the law, constitutional limitation of government, free markets, and a gold standard to place fiscal constraints on government as exemplified in the writings of John Locke, Adam Smith, David Hume, David Ricardo, Voltaire, Montesquieu and others.

Three Women who in the early 1940s unabashedly defended individualism and free-market capitalism in an age that widely considered American capitalism dead and socialism the future. In 1943, Isabel Paterson, Rose Wilder Lane and Ayn Rand published three groundbreaking books (The God of the Machine, The Discovery of Freedom and The Fountainhead), which laid the foundations of the modern libertarian movement.


Filed under Books, politics, Uncategorized

6 responses to “Women’s History Month

  1. nice blog 😀 😀 😀

  2. Libertarians stole Ayn Rand’s ideas, she didn’t like them from the start, FYI.


  3. becky roorda

    You have mis-identified “Isabel Paterson” in your group photo. The one on the left that you are calling Paterson is actually Zora Neale Hurston (who was African-American). Paterson was white.

    However, kudos to you for discovering Paterson (and also Rose Wilder Lane). I.M.P. (which is how Paterson signed her columns in the Herald-Tribune) is a forgotten woman, a real “dynamo,” as her biographer calls her. The biography about her by Stephen Cox (pub. 2004) does an excellent job of presenting the development of her political thought. It’s a good read.

    Her correspondence is witty and right to the point. Here’s a sample, from 1933: “Cuppy [a friend, Will Cuppy] came in for an hour last night, but it was so hot we sat morosely in the dark and I said I didn’t care what happened to a nation of halfwits, not if they all starve in breadlines; and he said earnestly: ‘Now you are talking in a constructive way.’ So it was too hot to add to that and he went home.'” [qtd. in Cox]

  4. Dresdin Archibald

    As a grand-nephew of Isabel Paterson I am pleased to see that she is getting credit for her works so long after she had been forgotten. I never met her but my mother talked of “Aunt Mary” often. She left Alberta at a young age and we never saw much of her afterwards. She and her sister Blanche worked in the Calgary law offices of Richard Bedford Bennett, later to be Prime Minister of Canada.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.