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Liberty Defined: 50 Essential Issues That Affect Our Freedom

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4.22  ·  Rating Details ·  2,395 Ratings  ·  234 Reviews
In Liberty Defined, congressman and #1 New York Times bestselling author Ron Paul returns with his most provocative, comprehensive, and compelling arguments for personal freedom to date. The term "Liberty" is so commonly used in our country that it has become a mere cliché. But do we know what it means? What it promises? How it factors into our daily lives? And most import ...more
Audiobook, 325 pages
Published April 19th 2011 by Grand Central Publishing (first published January 1st 2011)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jon
Dec 16, 2015 Jon rated it liked it
I'd always written Paul off as a nutcase (looks like many reviews here that start that same way), but last Saturday I told a friend that Paul was probably the only candidate who would actually change the foundations of government.

After I said that the only conclusion I could come to is that I should read his recent book, which was refreshingly consistent and principled. I've never felt excited about a national politician, but I think Paul might be authentic and genuine enough for me to passiona
...more
John Gardner
Jun 19, 2011 John Gardner rated it it was amazing
In the run-up to any presidential election, it is not uncommon to see new books hit the market from the pens of those who are in the running. These books often take the form of memoirs, introducing readers to the candidates on a more personal level; at other times a politician will actually put in writing what he or she intends to do if elected. While I have nothing against biographies, I prefer the more policy-oriented texts from those who desire my vote.

Thankfully, Ron Paul’s books tend to fal
...more
Brian
May 14, 2011 Brian rated it really liked it
"I certainly agree that every so often, after long periods of apathy, when the people, driven by architects of fear, have plunged into dependency, agitators have their day. That which has been ignored and scorned bursts forward with sudden credibility and offers an alternative to the failed ideas that bred and nourished a tyrannical government. Though great agitators for liberty in past centuries have struggled to keep the spirit alive, the climate looks quite healthy for significant and ...more
Patrick
Nov 24, 2011 Patrick rated it it was amazing
Amazon review:
Ron Paul continues the noble tradition of founders and thinkers such as Thomas Jefferson, Edmund Burke, James Burnham and Patrick Buchanan in social-political conditions of the 21st Century. The book is written in lucid, vital and free flowing style without any convoluted jargon.

The stage is set in contemporary America, and the intended audiences are likely the young indoctrinated subservient Americans, victims of Washington DC. This book could be the conservative bible for next t
...more
Peter Meyers
May 18, 2011 Peter Meyers rated it it was amazing
Without a doubt the best political book I've read in a long time. It is difficult to address 50 topics as complex as the ones Dr. Paul addresses here in full detail but you definitely get a clear picture of his thought process and stance on the subject matter. He covers everything from Abortion to Israel and his message and his theme are consistant throughout.

We have become a nation no longer focused on Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness but a nation focused on winning. Democrats vs. R
...more
Andrew
Jun 13, 2011 Andrew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all Americans!
Shelves: politics
“Let us give up our longing for welfare, our love of war, and our desire to see the government control and shape our fellow citizens. Let us understand that it is far better to live in an imperfect world than it is to live in a despotic world ruled by people who lord it over us through force and intimidation. We need a new understanding of what it means to be a great nation; it should mean, as George Washington said, that our nation is a beacon unto the world, not that we conquer the world ...more
Rachel
Jul 10, 2011 Rachel rated it it was ok
So far ( i'm about 2/3 thru his book), Dr.Paul has managed to write an entire book, and not say a whole lot. He's a pacifist at best, and a tad bit looney at worst. He makes outlandish comparisons and doesn't bother to back them up. While I agree with his main assertion that our Federal Government has gotten much too big and strayed from its Constitutionally enumerated powers, his views on how best to correct that seem laughable and at times not dealing with the reality we are faced with. Being ...more
Chella LaNiece
May 15, 2011 Chella LaNiece rated it it was amazing
Dr. Paul hits the nail on the head once more. I love Ron Paul, and I love all that he stands for. This is a MUST read before voting in the primaries. I can't say enough good things about Ron Paul or this book.
Luke
Nov 22, 2011 Luke rated it really liked it
I think I might go Libertarian for awhile
Mysterium
Jun 02, 2011 Mysterium rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Informed citizens of the US, and those into current events
If I totally agree with anyone who writes political analysis, there is a problem. I never expect to be in lock-step agreement with a politician, and even ones that I detest, I can usually salvage a few points of agreement. In the case of Dr. Paul's latest book, I found myself in about 90 percent agreement with his views. He does a very sound job at covering liberty defined, and laying out points that one can focus upon when doing a litmus test for liberty.

My complaint with Dr. Paul is that he do
...more
Oleg Kagan
Jun 13, 2011 Oleg Kagan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: idea-books
There are certain things I agree with Ron Paul about (marriage, sort-of the capital punishment, war) but I must say, reading these 50 short chapters has led me to believe that no matter the issue, for Mr. Paul, all problems arise from big government. That, it seems, is the purpose of the whole book -- to tell us that. There are certain issues I don't know much about, but I do know that there is much more to many of our country's problems then a large federal government and an ignorance of the ...more
R.James Phillips
May 17, 2011 R.James Phillips rated it it was amazing
Who is Ron Paul? The answer lies in this book. If I were asked to write a list of book recommendations for those seeking liberty - this would be number one on that list!

A quick read. The short chapters provide easy entry and exit points for readers on the go.

My only complaint is that it is a bit repetitive at times within each subject, however, I can see how it serves as building blocks for the title's foundation, as well as proving that most everything in politics is never a single-issue matter
...more
Ryan
May 15, 2011 Ryan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, politics
Loves this book. I agree with virtually everything Ron Paul espouses and feel a little disheartened that it seems unattainable. His approach of spreading the ideas of individual liberty without violence but with persuasion helps to cast his message in a way that will hopefully win over more listeners and others who will help.
Corey Sharpe
May 19, 2011 Corey Sharpe rated it it was amazing
I once heard Ron Paul say, "You can't have liberty in pieces." Say what you want about Ron Paul, but he is consistent -- a rarity among those inside the Capitol Beltway.
Gary
Apr 30, 2011 Gary rated it liked it
Shelves: liberty-library
didn't like the format. more for ron paul novices than super fans
Julie
Jun 13, 2011 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book alot, for a few reasons:

1) Ron Paul's stance is very, very clear on the 50 complex issues he presents here. And I agree with most, if not all of them. These issues are not easy to present, but he does so succinctly, relates it to our liberty as individuals, and then states his opinion on each one.

2) The format of the book makes it easy to get through. Anyone not completely enamored with politics, but wants an honest, real perspective of all the goings-on in Washington (like me
...more
Tim
Aug 31, 2011 Tim rated it it was ok
For a book attempting to define liberty, the defintion liberty he comes up with is quite limited, and only refers to the liberty that wealth provides.

(also, it's been a while since i read it, so i may not get every single thing right)

For example, in his chapter on world trade, he laughs off the biggest humanitarian objection to free world trade , which is that free world trade funds sweat shop labor in foreign countries with less labor laws than us. After describing it as "slavery," he says it's
...more
Galicius
Issue #1 Abortion

"As a pro-life libertarian physician, my strong advice, regardless of what is legal, is for medical personnel to just say no to participation in any procedure or process that is pro-death or diminishes respect for life in any way." p. 8

Issue #2 Assassination

"The war on terror slogan says 'we are at war,' and therefore protection of civil liberties is to be forfeited. But here is a fact: No war has been declared. The executive branch cannot ordain a war." p. 14-15


Issue #3 Austri
...more
George
May 25, 2014 George rated it it was amazing
ILLUMINATING AND INSIGHTFUL

"Ideas are very important to the shaping of society. In fact, they are more powerful than bombings or armies or guns. And this is because ideas are capable of spreading without limit. They are behind all the choices we make. They can transform the world in a way that governments and armies cannot. Fighting for liberty with ideas makes more sense to me than fighting with guns or politics or political power. With ideas, we can make real change that lasts.”

I'm so very gl
...more
MiLi
Mar 03, 2014 MiLi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sociedad, politica
En Liberty Defined, Ron Paul presenta su posición sobre 50 temas que afectan a la libertad en Estados Unidos.

La realidad es que los temas que plantea no sólo aplican a USA sino a cualquier democracia moderna... Aborto, demagogia, esclavitud, seguridad, racismo, matrimonio, sionismo, patriotismo, sindicatos, economía y muchos ítems más son abordados de una manera muy clara en la que Paul expone lo que realmente piensa. El libro no parece estar escrito por un ghost writer, ya que la manera de esc
...more
Kevin
Jan 21, 2012 Kevin rated it liked it
Half good, half bullshit. I like some of his ideas, especially those regarding ending the wars overseas, reducing American militarism, ending prohibition, and reducing the size and scope of government. He's way off the mark on global warming, and the chapter in this book shows it. Other topics like abortion don't really affect me directly, but his position in this book isn't as hardline as the one described on his website.

I did especially like that he is as critical, if not more so, on the Bush
...more
Stephen
Jun 21, 2016 Stephen rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics, libertarian
a few weeks ago I read Ron Paul's Liberty, Defined, which works out what liberty entails in the 21st century. For the author, it is nothing less than the golden rule applied to politics, and he uses fifty issues floating around in the sewage tank of American political debate as examples. These range from abortion to Zionism, with less controversial fare in between. The subjects are alphabetical, without any other structure, which makes it less a definitive argument for liberty and more a ...more
Brian Lindell
Nov 07, 2012 Brian Lindell rated it it was amazing
With today's issues in our country, 12 Term Texas Congressman Ron Paul compiles 50 of the largest issues that affect us, the US citizen in Liberty Defined: 50 Essential Issues That Affect Our Freedom. From Abortion to Assassination, to Foreign Policy to Zionism, Dr. Paul makes outstanding points on all issues, claiming that down our current path our country is bound to fail. He is also disappointed on how we as a country have forgotten our civil liberties and allow the federal government to step ...more
Greg Schell
50 essential issues is a lot of issues, as a friend of mine pointed out in a TIC sort of way. And she was right. In his attempt to find and indentify/discuss 50 issues, Ron Paul spent a good bit of time repeating himself. That said, it was an interesting read if taken in small doses of 4-5 issues at a time. I identify and agree with a lot what Paul discusses in this book, even if there are a few things I disagree with completely or only agree with to a certain point. People on the left and the ...more
Steve Hadfield
I admit that I liked this book more than I anticipated, and Paul has changed a couple of my perspectives. He's still wrong on the whole anti-war points, since he seems to always assign a motive for people. Still, he's spot on for his economic and cultural points as he shows the logic of his positions and leaves the accusation of motive out of the discussion. Progressives are just dead wrong when it comes to Keynesian economics, and we've had 8 decades of proof of its destructive policies on our ...more
César Serradas
Sep 12, 2015 César Serradas rated it really liked it
Dentro do formato de O Mínimo que Você Deve Saber Para Não Ser Um Idiota, Ron Paul é eticamente bastante superior a Olavo de Carvalho, não tendo a elegância semântica do segundo. Para quem gosta dos livros que são uma coletânea de assuntos abordados de forma breve e incisiva este livro é bastante recomendável.

O autor aborda 50 temas polémicos da realidade política, geopolítica e moral sem qualquer medo de se comprometer demonstrando sempre a sua interpretação libertária dos temas. Especialmente
...more
John
Nov 13, 2012 John rated it it was ok
Shelves: politics
I love Ron Paul for being pretty much the only guy in government these days who treats the Constitution with reverence. However, I'm not sure I can get behind his foreign policy. His "live and let live" mentality is admirable, but, now that everything has become so globalized, I'm not sure such a strategy is even possible, let alone beneficial in keeping Americans safe. Sure, Paul points out that it works for Sweden, but, seeing how America is currently the world's only superpower, I'm not sure ...more
Ray
Aug 01, 2011 Ray rated it liked it
If you can trust the pre-election polls, Ron Paul doesn't have the support to become the nominee for President in the 2012 election. Nonetheless, this is a good book to read to gain an understanding of the policies and beliefs of one of the declared candidates. You can make up your own mind about supporting him or not, but at least you'll have a good basis for your decision after reading this book. To me, that was one of the main aspects of the book. The sections are short and to the point, not ...more
Sandra
Sep 10, 2015 Sandra rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Ron Paul's fans
Recommended to Sandra by: Nobody, did it to myslef
I wanted to learn more about the American libertarianism, and I suppose I did. I also learned that Mr. Ron Paul is a thoroughly decent and likeable person.
There is surprisingly little to disagree with here, when it comes to the author's criticism of the current state of the affairs. However, his idealism often makes his analysis and proposed solutions too simplistic and so out of touch with reality that he, at times, sounds (I really regret having to say this) a bit loony.
I can't see this book a
...more
Steph
Aug 07, 2011 Steph rated it really liked it
I haven't "finished" this yet, but I don't know if I ever will because it's a topical book. But my goodness it's made me think! I always thought Ron Paul was kind of a wacko... but I have come to find out that I agree with a LOT of what he has to say, and even if I don't agree, he has certainly made me think about issues in a way that I haven't before. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who wants a fresh view on the issues. I think the thing I like the very most is that he's ...more
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395622
Republican United States Congressman from Lake Jackson, Texas, a physician, a bestselling author, and a former 2008 U.S. presidential candidate.
Originally from the Pittsburgh suburb of Green Tree, Pennsylvania, he studied at Duke University School of Medicine; after his 1961 graduation and a residency in obstetrics and gynecology, he became a U.S. Air Force flight surgeon, serving outside the Viet
...more
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“Ideas are very important to the shaping of society. In fact, they are more powerful than bombings or armies or guns. And this is because ideas are capable of spreading without limit. They are behind all the choices we make. They can transform the world in a way that governments and armies cannot. Fighting for liberty with ideas makes more sense to me than fighting with guns or politics or political power. With ideas, we can make real change that lasts.” 37 likes
“Today’s events are reminiscent of the Old Testament story of how the Israelites demanded a king over God’s objection. They believed that a king would give them peace and security. The results proved otherwise.” 32 likes
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