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The Libertarian Alliance (LA) is a libertarian think tank in Great Britain that promotes free-market economics and civil liberties. According to its website, "The Libertarian Alliance is a non-partisan group fighting statism in all its forms and working for the creation of a truly free society".[1] It advocates for complete free speech and the abolition of taxation and government intervention in economic and social life.[2] Mises UK owns the Libertarian Alliance Archives, which "include nearly 800 pamphlets in print and from more than 150 authors".[3]

Libertarian Alliance
LibertarianAlliancelogo.jpg
The logo of the Libertarian Alliance
Motto For Life, Liberty, and Property!
Predecessor Radical Libertarian Alliance
Successor Mises UK
Formation 1977; 40 years ago (1977)
Founders Mark Brady, Judy Englander, David Ramsay Steele and Chris Tame
Extinction 2017; 0 years ago (2017)
Type Think tank
Headquarters London
Website www.la-articles.org.uk

Contents

Early historyEdit

With ancestral ties to the Liberty and Property Defence League of Lord Elcho and Sir Ernest Benn's Society of Individualists, the LA was founded in the 1970s by Mark Brady, Judy Englander, David Ramsay Steele and Chris Tame in Woking. It was an alliance of libertarians, minarchists, anarchists, and classical liberals. The LA was perceived to be the continuation of the Radical Libertarian Alliance founded by Brady and Tame in late 1971, or the earlier Young Libertarians founded by David Myddelton in the late 1960s.[1]

The principles of the LA were formulated by the founding members, and written out by David Ramsay Steele in its first Tactical Note.[4] At its founding, the LA had no official leader, but had a chairperson, secretary, and a treasurer. The Alternative Bookshop, formed in 1978, became the unofficial hub of LA activities for a time.[1] The Alternative Bookshop, with Tame as its manager, was advertised in the National Association for Freedom's publication, The Free Nation. [5]

In 1982 a power struggle within the organization caused a split.[6] From then until 2017 there were two groups calling themselves the Libertarian Alliance and using the same logo and using the phrase "Let a Thousand Libertarian Alliances Bloom!"[1]. In 2017, the Tame Libertarian Alliance renamed itself Mises UK.

21st century activitiesEdit

Although not the case in the past, the two groups now have friendly relations, often sending guest speakers to each other's conferences, and commenting civilly and constructively on each other's blogs and sites. A number of English libertarians are members of both groups.

The Tame Libertarian AllianceEdit

The organisation led by Chris Tame until his death in March 2006 is now led by Sean Gabb, whose involvement with the LA stretches back to December 1979. The Tame-Gabb LA maintains the sites libertarian.co.uk and The Libertarian Alliance Blog. Gabb speaks regularly on the television and on the radio, in current affairs programmes and where comment is required.[7] Media appearances are also made by Publications Director Keir Martland, with his first such appearance being 'Good Morning Dublin' to discuss the 2016 European Union Referendum.[8]

The Tame-Gabb LA Executive Committee includes founding member David Davis, Traditional Britain Group Vice-President John Kersey, and Secretary of the Society for Individual Freedom Nigel Gervas Meek.[9][10] In 2015 Gabb's Libertarian Alliance was recognised by HMRC as an educational charity.[11]

The Tame-Gabb LA for many years held dinners and conferences with high-profile speakers as Adam Smith Institute Director Eamonn Butler and libertarian writer Claire Fox in 2006,[12] anarcho-capitalist philosophers David D. Friedman and Hans-Hermann Hoppe in 2008,[13] and LGBT activist Peter Tatchell and Conservative Party Member of Parliament Steve Baker in 2010.[14] Since 2010, there have been no such events, with the focus being on publications, social media, and the Free Life Podcast.[15]

This organisation is a member of Backlash, which was formed in 2005 in order to oppose a new law criminalising possession of "extreme pornography". At the same time it has close links with the Traditional Britain Group. Gabb, Kersey, and Martland have each spoken to Traditional Britain conferences.[16] Director Sean Gabb and Director of Publications[17] Keir Martland are members of Hans-Hermann Hoppe's Property and Freedom Society, and have attended its meetings in Bodrum, Turkey.[18]

In 2017, Gabb resigned from the directorship of the Libertarian Alliance[19] and handed it to Keir Martland, who rebranded it Mises UK.[20] The Council of Mises UK includes Godfrey Bloom as President.[21]

The McDonagh Libertarian AllianceEdit

The public face of the other organisation is usually David McDonagh, although Bob Layson sometimes acts as chairperson. They have no director or president. This LA has regular meetings in London with a lecture and then questions and answers. Sean Gabb has spoken at these meetings on a number of occasions and each time he is introduced by McDonagh as "the Director of the Libertarian Alliance". British sceptic philosophers JC Lester and Ray Percival are also involved with this LA. They maintain the website LA Articles and a blog.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d "About", Libertarian Alliance.
  2. ^ Goodwin, Barbara (2007). Using Political Ideas. Wiley. p. 60. ISBN 978-0-470-02552-9. 
  3. ^ https://misesuk.org/about/libertarian-alliance/
  4. ^ "Purpose and Strategy of the Libertarian Alliance" Libertarian Alliance, Tactical Note Number 1
  5. ^ "Chris R. Tame: Two Years After" Sean Gabb, Free Life Commentary
  6. ^ "Aftermath of the Split", Free Life, Journal of the Libertarian Alliance, Vol. 3, No. 3.;"Attempted Theft of an Organization", Free Life, Journal of the Libertarian Alliance, Vol. 3, No. 3.
  7. ^ "Sean Gabb". Sean Gabb. 
  8. ^ "Keir Martland on Good Morning Dublin". Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  9. ^ "Officers of the Libertarian Alliance" The Libertarian Alliance
  10. ^ "How the SIF is organised" Society for Individual Freedom
  11. ^ "Libertarian Alliance: Change of Status" Libertarian Alliance
  12. ^ "LA Conference 2006" Libertarian Alliance
  13. ^ "LA Conference 2008" Libertarian Alliance
  14. ^ "LA Conference 2010" Libertarian Alliance
  15. ^ "The Free Life Podcast" Free Life Podcast
  16. ^ "In Defence of English Civilisation" Traditional Britain Group
  17. ^ Gabb, Sean. "Libertarian Alliance Committee Change". The Libertarian Alliance. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  18. ^ "The Club Med of Libertarian Conferences" The Backbencher
  19. ^ https://misesuk.org/2017/06/19/sean-gabb-notice-of-abdication/
  20. ^ https://misesuk.org/2017/06/19/introducing-the-new-director/
  21. ^ https://misesuk.org/people/council/