Blogs > Liberty and Power > Let's Do the Time Warp

Mar 31, 2009 1:16 pm

Let's Do the Time Warp

I just received in the mail the latest (Spring 09) issue of The Independent Review, a first-rate journal which is edited by distinguished economist (and L&P co-blogger) Bob Higgs. I was thrilled to notice, when glancing at the table of contents, that my 2008 book Deleting the State: An Argument about Government was among the books reviewed. The review was written by philosopher Jan Narveson, author of (among other things) The Libertarian Idea, who is certainly in a good position to know whether I know what I’m talking about, so I was pleased to see that the review was largely favorable. I do feel I need to reply to one thing though. One of Narveson’s main criticisms of the book is that I do not address an important article, Randy Holcombe’s 2004 “Government: Unnecessary but Inevitable,” also, as it happens, from The Independent Review. Narveson couldn't have known this, of course, but the main reason I did not address this 2004 article is that I wrote the book some years earlier. Epic production delays and poor business conditions at my publisher meant that they had the manuscript in hand for ages before finally printing the thing. If I had written the book in, say, 2006, I would surely have addressed Holcombe, and I hope to do so in the near future. But the truth is, the book was finished by 2002, so it’s not really my fault that I don’t address material written in 2004. Anyway, it was otherwise a very fair review, and I was happy to get it.

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