America’s Founding Fathers Were Liberals fact

America’s Founding Fathers were Liberals

America’s founding fathers were classical liberals, meaning they favored liberty, private property, capitalism, freedom of religion, and a limited Republican style of government. See definition of classical liberalism.[1][2][3]

In fact, the founding fathers of America weren’t just “liberals”, they were Republicans, Federalists, and Democrats too. They were Patriots, they were a lot of things, but one thing they weren’t were monarchists or loyalists to the crown. The father of modern political science and modern Republicanism Machiavelli said, “the governments of the people are better than those of princes” [Book I, Chapter LVIII of Livy], and in the Spirit of Montesquieu’s “Liberal” Republicanism they agreed (although they often didn’t agree on much beyond that).

I say this only as a technicality, and from a historical perspective, as the Tories, King’s men, and Loyalists (the conservatives of the day) were all but forced to choose between “The Crown” and the principles of Liberalism due to the events leading up to the Revolution and America’s victory in it.[4]

The founders shared general ideology with both major parties of today (Democrats and Republicans), but the key here is that America is a liberal nation and what we think of as “conservative” is actually liberal-conservative (like Burke, not classically truly conservative like a King to the right of Hobbes).

This can be confirmed by thinking about the “American Revolution” where our patriot founders fought the King’s men to create a Democratically-minded Liberal Republic.

After the Revolution, many conservative loyalists were forced to flee, and those who stayed weren’t always treated kindly.

Certainly, no loyalist (no true Tory, Loyalist, or King’s men; i.e. no “true” conservative) was going to have a position in the new government. The leaders of the new government would be comprised solely of Patriots.

Even our most conservative founders like Alexander Hamilton, George Washington, John Adams, and Gouverneur Morris were types of liberals (conservative liberals in terms of economics and central power… but generally social progressive liberals in terms of issues like slavery and modernization).

Those liberal-conservative founders weren’t “conservative” in the classical sense, they were just a different type of liberal than the more radically classically liberal (and often socially conservative) Anti-Federalist founders like Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry (who were willing to accept conservative positions on slavery if it meant avoiding a strong central government). See types of liberalism and conservatism.

BOTTOMLINE: Although some founders were today what we call “conservative” in America (which is liberal-conservative for the most part), America was founded by liberals and principals of liberalism and is today still a liberal nation. Other countries and parties throughout the world have specifically been trying to prove that liberalism doesn’t work since about the mid 1800’s (if not just since 1776), and honestly it is what a lot of the World’s major Wars have been about. We should not forget the importance of defending liberal values in America (and in our case that is as simple as defending the spirit of the Constitution and Bill of Rights, and the character of the men and women who fought for them, ideally through liberal and democratic means).

PBS The American Revolution

SEMANTICS: Liberalism is the ideology of liberty and equality. Classical liberalism emphasizes liberty, and Social liberalism emphasizes equality. Thus another way to phrase this would be, as one commenter eluded, “America’s founding fathers were liberals. Some were more liberal than others, but all were liberals (not “classical liberals”, but just “liberals”). And, even amongst the most liberal of the founders [and most the most conservative for that matter], differing ideas were held as to how best to assure human liberty [and equality] in the state.” In other words, the founders didn’t favor authority, tradition, and state control over liberty like the Tories did, and they fought for equality-for-all in their battle for human rights, sovereignty, and democracy (something rarely done in history), but that doesn’t mean that they were all what we think of as “modern liberals” or that they fully agreed on how best to ensure liberty, equality, and justice for all. Today, social liberalism is the predominate form of liberalism and we can say those who favor the liberty aspect (like a states’ rights advocate or a libertarian) are being “classically liberal”, so the distinction works, but we can still despite this say simply, “America’s founders are liberals” and “the nation was founded on the principles of liberalism”. Feel free to comment below.

TIP: Economic classical liberalism is a thing, it is what Adam Smith, Franklin’s friend and father of modern economics, presents in his Wealth of Nations… but don’t go thinking every classical liberal is a staunch Goldwater or Friedman Libertarian. That isn’t the case at all. Thomas Paine favored a wealth tax, and the term “commonwealth“, which predates the U.S. gaining independence, essentially implies a redistribution of wealth for the “common social good” within the state. In modern terms, we can say “all the founders were types of classical liberals”, but some were more progressive or conservative than others, in terms of economics and/or social policy, on a given issue. Later, those liberty minded, progressive, and conservative liberal ideologies would grow into the modern political factions, but at the time they are all liberal-left to George III’s right.

FACT: The Glorious Revolution and England, the American Revolution, and the French Revolutions were all liberal revolutions. The rebels in each case fought for principles of liberalism and against kings. America was founded on the principles of the enlightenment (as can be clearly seen in the structure of the Republican government enacted by the Constitution, and the classical liberal principles enacted by the Bill of Rights).

FACT: Before the Revolution, about a third of the colonists were loyal to Britain, a third neutral, and a third wanting rebellion. All the founders were essentially patriots (those who wanted rebellion) and none were openly loyal to Britain. The Patriots called those who supported Britain, “persons inimical to the liberties of America.”

TIP: All the founders were also Republicans (in that they favored a Republic). They were almost all Democrats (favoring elements of democracy) and Federalists (favoring a federation or confederation of states; this is even true for the Anti-Federalists). The founders were generally well versed in the history of famous successful nation-states like Rome and Athens and pull their ideas from the enlightenment philosophers who examined these nation-states like Locke and Montesquieu.

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776. The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America: “…We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” – The Declaration of Independence; where Thomas Jefferson mirrors the words of the father of liberalism John Locke.

The Political Ideology of the Founding Fathers

To be clear, not every founder agreed on ideology. In fact, there was little agreement.

Some founders were conservative in terms of economics, others were liberal in terms of economics, some favored a strong central government, others wanted States’ rights, some wanted a rural nation with no central bank, some wanted a modern nation focused on trade. In these ways, our founders were diverse in their views as we are here in 2016. This is one of the reasons why we have a United States and not just a single State. the liberal principle of federalism allows for a diverse nation of United States!

The founders’ wide range of beliefs eventually led to both party politics and famous compromises, but despite their differences, they had one thing in common: They were not loyalists (and thus not true conservatives for the time).

Some founders may have wanted to keep ties with Britain, but these more classically conservative founders like Adams and Hamilton were Whig-like Federalists, not Tories and King’s men. Likewise, the more socially conservative pro-slavery founders in the southern Anti-Federalist party were true liberals, despite their social conservatisim. Thus, even the most socially or classically conservative founder is a type of liberal.[5]

In fact, this is still true for most Americans today. We may think of a deep south politican as socially conservative, or a New York banker as classically conservative, but make no mistake, no true freedom-loving by-the-Constitution Patriot is a true Conservative in 2016 any more than they would have been in 1776.

The Constitution: A Liberal Governing Document

The Constitution was written, and the war won, by the American Patriots (pro-independence classical liberals of all kinds) rebelling against “the Crown” (conservatives).

Many of the true loyalists fled after the war. Meanwhile, of those who stayed, even the “somewhat loyal” Federalists feared political “factions“, favored freedom, wanted to get away from kings and taxes, and thus, despite their conservative character, didn’t want a “traditional, conservative” pro-monarch style of government.

While the founders didn’t agree on much, as stated above, it is largely their agreement of the principles of liberalism which kept them united.

Instead of breaking into different factions or favoring a confederacy (as the Articles of Confederation did), the founders eventually found compromise positions in a Constitutional Federal Republic (a more perfect Union), as detailed by 1789’s Constitution. They focused on a mutual agreement on a separation of powers and liberty, and other basic principles of liberalism and the democratic ideals that opposed the aristocracy of Britain.[6][7]

Just like today, there is little agreement on what liberty means exactly or how government should look based on our core principles, but there is no question, despite the conflict, we uphold principles like truth, justice, and liberty for all.

You can read about each founding father. We know that the Age of Enlightenment was based on the concept of Liberalism and the works of the Father of Liberalism John Locke. Out of these ideas come Britain’s Glorious Revolution (1688), the American Revolution (1776), and the French Revolution (1788).

In sum, the United States of America was founded on the concepts of liberalism and the separation of church and state (although, to be fair, these words aren’t said explicitly in the founding documents).

Tea, Taxes, and The American Revolution: Crash Course World History #28

TIP: In Latin “liber” means “free.” So classic liberalism embodies the concept of liberty. The founders are all liberals; they believed in and fought for freedom. The Constitution establishes a Government that is evidence of this and documents like the Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights back this up. Even the “loyalist” founding fathers were Liberal in many respects; such is the nature of fighting against the (already somewhat liberal) aristocracy in the name of liberty.

TIP: The main thing that divides Americans into factions and parties are differing views on the meaning of liberty. Nearly all Americans value liberty above all else (which essentially makes everyone, even today, a type of liberal), yet there is a big difference between a conservative-libertarian and a social-liberal, this is the key point to grasp. In a perfect world the factions work together to create a perfect unity, in practice our Founders disagreed with each other fervently, and the divide on what liberty means has resulted in the Civil War and battles over Civil Rights.

America’s Founding Fathers Were Liberals

America and the Principles of Liberalism

The American revolution is inspired by the Age of Enlightenment in Europe which saw the birth of classic liberalism. At its core Liberalism simply means “we don’t want to be ruled by an aristocracy because we value liberty.”

Today, if we could ideologically separate the Libertarian Party of America from its conservative ideology, which favors a restrictive religious-based law, we could say that “classic liberalism” is simply libertarianism. If we can’t, then we have to concede it is closer to the social liberalism of the Democratic party, which sacrifices small government for social welfare, which isn’t classical liberalism either (it is more a mix between what Franklin set up in his Commonwealth and what Morris almost lost his position over).

“He never would concur in upholding domestic slavery. It was a nefarious institution. It was the curse of heaven in the States where it prevailed.” – 1787. James Madison Report on Gouverneur Morris’ Address to the Federal Constitutional Convention

“This country must be united. If persuasion does not unite it, the sword will.” Gouverneur Morris (i.e. a social liberal, which is somewhat of a traditionally conservative position).[8]

Liberalism and the Religious Views of the Founders

The liberal ideology of the founders is true not just in terms of politics and rights, but in terms of faith too.

Despite many having strong faiths, the Founding Fathers explicitly agreed on a secular government and structure for the state based on reason.

The separation of powers, including the separation of branches of government and the separation of church and state, are core classical liberal values discussed by Montesquieu (early America’s most cited author and an obvious influence of Madison’s Virginia Plan). They are mirrored by Locke, Kant, and many more. Other, more traditional liberal-conservative thinkers like Hume and Burke, are were also considered, and an ongoing debate between empiricism and rationalism also affected things.

Other Liberal Documents

The Bill of Rights, Constitution, Federalist Papers, Declaration of Independence, and Party Platforms of each year all read like a classic liberal manifesto. This is because Britain itself was the aristocracy trying to oppress the nation who demanded liberty (America).

Rebelling against the King and taxes created what can arguably be called by no other name than “liberal revolution” and thus the patriots which won it can be called by no other name than liberal.

Despite the truisms above, and as noted above, it should be made clear that many founders and Americans of the time were then and are today “conservative” in that they favor tradition and order. During the American Revolution, this could mean favoring the church, the rule of law, and/or ties to Britain. Later this would mean favoring states-rights for slavery, favoring temperance, favoring states rights over Civil Rights, or favoring big business over people and public welfare, which is something both parties have historically done at times in the US. The definition of conservative is subject to change depending on what it is opposing.

What is a Liberal (Social Liberalism)? Notice how this explains that if you are poor and oppressed you can’t be free? That is social liberalism (the dominant liberalism of today). Libertarianism says, “sorry friend” freedom trumps your meal; you’ll have to starve on the street. Traditional classical liberalism (libertarianism) led to the Civil War, rejection of Civil Rights, and lots of other troubles. Many modern social liberals reject the idea of completely free-markets. Some Libertarians reject the idea of Keynes and the social liberals.

What Is Libertarianism (Classical Liberalism / Modern American Libertarianism)? Libertarianism is classical liberalism. The only problem is the American Libertarian party is no more classically liberal than the modern Democratic party. They both favor the core ideology, but the interpretation is very different. Social liberals, like the Democrats, believe liberty can only exist with a strong safety-net (they believe in Keynes and the welfare state).

Types of Liberalism

Shortly after the birth of liberalism, the ideology split into a few types of which the modern parties have grown out of.

We can say the great Americans have typically fallen into roughly five groups:

  • Classic Liberals: A libertarian with no right-leaning ideology. Favors a capitalist economy in the style of Adam Smith
  • Social Liberal: A liberal who believes that liberty can only be obtained with some government intervention. Favors mixed-market capitalism (Keynes).
  • Conservative Liberal: Pro-business liberal or conservative who favors trade and free markets, but has an elitist outlook. This is a type of classical liberal.
  • Conservatives: A response to whatever the liberalism of the day is, typically pro-religion (even to the effect of recombining church and state).
  • Social Conservatives: Conservatives who are against the use of government to provide for social welfare.
  • Socialist: A rejection of capitalism and liberalism, ideologically and economically in favor of Marx. A Communist is an extreme socialist who doesn’t want any sort of mixed-socioeconomic system.

Which founding fathers were liberals? The founders can be thought of as a few types of liberals (some of which we actually associate with the term “conservative” today. We can express this roughly as: radical liberals like Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry, conservative liberals like Alexander Hamilton, centered liberals like Benjamin Franklin and James Madison, and early social liberals like Gouverneur Morris (whose family were loyalists and who almost became a traditional conservative, but sided with the Whigs). Today we may describe figures like Samuel Adams and Patrick Henry as social conservatives, or Hamilton as a Neoliberal or traditional conservative, but in their day the Tories of Britain and King George III where the conservatives and the patriot founders were not.

Federalists and Anti-Federalists: Despite us being able to retroactively place founders in groups with accuracy, the  founding fathers and their original two factions were classic liberals (Jefferson and Anti-Federalists) and conservative liberals (Hamilton Federalists), the other factions don’t arise until later in history.

Today’s Democrat is a Social Liberal

Today when we say liberal we mean Democrat, but modern Democrats are only liberal in three ways. 1. the Democratic party originated as the party of Jefferson (a progressive, despite his socially conservative qualities); 2. they aren’t conservative regarding the separation of church and state and other such issues; 3. they hold most of the core liberal values, they just interpret liberty differently than their ancestors and favor a “welfare state.”

Thus, modern Democrats are mostly social liberals, although they are often classically conservative as well. Meanwhile modern Republicans are typically social conservatives and classical liberals. Thus, still today, Americans are generally all types of liberals.

TIP: For more reading see “how to understand the basic political parties.”

Chomsky on Classical Liberalism, Freedom, & Democracy

Article Citations
  1. Classical liberalism”
  2. Founding Fathers of the United States”
  3. Minutes of the Tryon County Committee of Safety”
  4. American Revolution
  5. Loyalist (American_Revolution)”
  7. Founding Fathers”
  8. Gouverneur Morris, The Constitution and Slavery”

America’s founding fathers were classic liberals, this means they didn’t want to live under the rule of the King, but rather wanted a secular government by the people, for the people, that promoted liberty.

This should not be confused with modern social liberals, or the modern right-leaning libertarians, both of which grew out of classic liberalism.

Author: Thomas DeMichele

Thomas DeMichele is the content creator behind,,, and other and Massive Dog properties. He also contributes to MakerDAO and other cryptocurrency-based projects. Tom's focus in all...

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bernard baruch carman Did not vote.

Thank you Thomas DeMichele for addressing this most worthy issue.

Because of my somewhat unique view regarding this matter, I cannot exactly accurately vote here one way or the other. Perhaps elaborating a bit will explain why.

What is the earliest historical writing which uses the words “liberal” and/or “conservative” as referring to political ideologies? Please cite specific references.

Did the American founding fathers ever use the words “liberal” and/or “conservative” as referring to political ideologies? Please cite specific references.

Because I’ve yet to find any indication of the usage of these words, which is now common, until sometime in the 1900’s. For example, Frederic Bastiat’s The Law published in 1850 never refers to either “liberal” or “conservative” as political ideologies.

If one is going to make the claim that at the time of America’s founding, people considered the words “liberal” and/or “conservative as referring to political ideologies, one ought to be able to cite the usage of such words accordingly.

My view is that the reason why the American founders were at that time thought of as “liberals” is due to the fact that besides proportioning, the word actually refers to one’s propensity for change, rather than having to do with any political ideology whatsoever. In contrast, the word “conservative” refers to one’s propensity for no change. These words can then be applied to any given specific matter.

To perhaps better illustrate the proper usage of these words in practical application, consider: was Prohibition in the 20’s a liberal or conservative event? While one who refers to these words as being political ideologies may call it conservative due to 20th century political science indoctrination, the fact is that among societies/nations throughout all of human history there hardly ever existed any national prohibition against the consumption of alcohol. Thus, Prohibition in the 20’s was definitely a major change, and therefore can only accurately be considered to be liberal.

So, I also view the American founders as having *liberal* ideals only due to the fact that they were offering a major change in governance, from a monarchy to a Democratic-Republic — that is, a system of governance which incorporates democratically elected representatives, under a Constitution designed to protect the individual Natural Rights of all.

However, they also had a great many *conservative* ideals. For example, when the British Crown demanded firearm confiscation, they adamantly disagreed… then went to war. Many believe this was the camel’s back breaking straw. They had been owning and using firearms and were not planning on giving them up. Therefore, in this area of principle they could certainly not be thought of as anything other than conservative.

My suggestion for everyone is to dispense with using the terms “liberal” and “conservative” because they really are phony terms with regard to political philosophy/ideology. We would be far better off even dispensing with the entire false “left” vs. “right” political paradigm, as it causes only confusion. For example, Hitler and his NAZI party are often called “right wing” by the largely ignorant social media masses, while they were really always a Socialist and therefore “left wing” political party (using the false political paradigm).

It would be far more accurate to equate any point of political agenda or principle with one of two categories: 1. Collectivism (dishonoring individual free will), and 2. Individualism (honoring individual free will). Then perhaps more individuals would better recognize that all such collectivist forms of government (Socialist, Communist, Fascist, etc.) cannot ever serve to maximize peace, prosperity, and liberty the way Individualism can, so long as a society’s Civil Law incorporates Natural Law in honoring the individual Natural Rights of all.

Regardless, it’s all food for thought.

In liberty,


bernard baruch carman
∞ ∞ ∞

Utopia Enslaves Doesn't beleive this myth.

“Liberalism and the Religious Views of the Founders”

The words ‘separation of church and state’ were mentioned only once and that was in a private letter by Jefferson. Why didn’t you mention this salient fact?

Jefferson’s concern was that “The State” would soon enough again attack the tenets of the faith (as we have been seeing for nearly 60 years now): that the very religion; that had allowed the spread of civilization because of the creation of the idea of required personal responsibility and virtue based on the authority of ‘The Word’, the religion that replaced Tiberius-like tyranny with things like, the House of Lords, Commons and the Courts, and was based entirely on the first histories ever written about and dedicated to the teaching of just one Man that are the most published documents in all of written history, Christianity, would be stormed and burned down.

Jefferson knew of the coming attacks by liberals on Christianity today. Look around. If you have the eyes to see, it should be plain enough to you. Liberal thought is now defended in US courts by the ‘Temple of Satan’.
Makes sense, threw that in just in case you hadn’t read who is taking Texas to court on the latest Liberal Roe vs. Wade, black-baby genocide for the sake of fearful and crocodile teared, white liberals for the creation of their beloved MRNA medical device that tracks you. Look up Graphene Oxide if that’s not too much effort for a liberal afraid of the truth.

Since the words ‘separation of church and state’ were only written ONCE in a private letter, where do you get off titling this section of your hit piece on conservatism, with the words “Liberalism and the Religious Views of the Founders” FOUNDERS? Please provide documentary evidence that OTHER Founding Fathers used the words, wrote them anywhere else or at least show where the words are discussed among them at any time. You won’t be able to and, if you are as educated as you like to paint yourself, please correct your heading for this section. In light of the unwarranted bias of the complete article and other intentional omissions, your editing won’t help any but this section, of course, was your most egregious expedition into convincing me you’ve read all of Zinn and called it history and brought about this flurry of words.

Jefferson knew that one day ‘religion’ his ‘faith’, whether that faith be Quaker, or Calvinist, Lutheran or Methodist, or even Anglican or Catholic, would come under assault from liberal humanists such as Locke and I imagine, yourself. Though you may refer to yourself instead, as so many ‘liberals’ do, by many pronouns or by many faiths? Perhaps you would chic-ly call yourself a Sufi, Buddhist, Christian? Which of course is no Christian at all. I’m guessing you are Post Modern and believe that there is no Truth. Stand for nothing, fall for anything, right? I don’t know, being only human, death kinda strikes me as a Truth. So much Common Sense is missing in the world today due to ‘liberal’ thinking.

Christianity guided history from its Birth during the slavery of Rome, slowly mitigating slavery to the serfdom of Europe, and on to the rise of democracy. These days, post-modern thinking seems to have driven liberals onto “The Road To Serfdom. Today? Look around and see the return to serfdom in the faces of the welfare state, socialism and communism, common and beloved ‘idee fixes’ of the current liberal/fascist mindset and also, those three are a perfectly natural progression that “liberals” love and espouse.

I fear, based on your words, that you may also very likely believe that Muslims, whose faith tells them there will be No Peace On Earth till ALL are Muslim and who have been commanded to convert the Infidel by any means possible even unto murder, can, because of your widely abused and misinterpreted ‘separation of church and state’ complete lie, assimilate into a Constitutional Republic and still call themselves Muslims. Yet you encourage the immigration of Constitution Haters blindly and ignorantly. Muslims are accepted by today’s liberals as if be-headings were the most natural thing in the world, liberals who seem to be ignorant of the practice and tenets of Sharia Law which is in total opposition to the freedoms of the Constitution and Bill of Rights. That, of course, is liberal delusion. You yourself, let me guess, support Muslim immigration? Have liberal women or you (perhaps that’s how you identify), ever researched the current number of Sharia Courts in the US? Can liberals even repeat the phrase ‘intentional Balkanization of the US so as to facilitate complete control over it’s citizens after liberally collecting everyone’s guns due to rampant terrorist violence?” Oh, in case you need a clue, that’s why there’s the 2nd Amendment that liberals are currently attacking morning to night.

Jefferson avidly devoured history and was full aware how Henry VIII had what? Henry, with the stroke of a pen and, yet again, another sex-driven whim, literally and liberally just began his own religion and changed Christianity to fit the King’s/State’s needs. Jefferson knew liberal, forward thinking, leaders would gain a throne one day since Virtue is not hereditary and Power remains Power. He knew that the driving greed for power and money that grows in men and women who get a taste of money and power, would again say the State was the giver of men’s rights and not God. You mention none of this in your Marxist/Leninist teachings.

Jefferson knew this could happen again unless accounted for. With his letters he guided the birth of this nation with his philosophy and his ability to honestly teach others by understanding all sides, possible outcomes to decisions, and relating those outcomes understandably and succinctly. Nowhere in any of the founding documents of the USA is ‘separation of church’ and state mentioned, though self-proclaimed teachers such as yourself, always imply it is somewhere in the Founding Documents and SHOUTED from the rooftops by every signer of EVERY document: carved in stone tablets, in italics, bold and underlined high point type.

Please stop. I notice how you carefully withhold, like a crooked lawyer, any exculpatory evidence. Jefferson knew that that every humanist monarch thinking “I’m God” could and would bastardize God to suit The State’s needs. A foundation built on documents of paper by man can be easily burned. Documents based on a cornerstone, a rock, do not. You are no defender of The Constitution. You are no defender of the Christianity that sustains the freedoms it protects..

God is the giver of men’s rights. Otherwise the Declaration, Constitution and Bill of Rights have no foundation and are useless. That couldn’t be stated more explicitly in the founding documents. Locke as most others you mention was a Humanist, as I imagine you may be and almost all liberals today are. That is why you will never hear a liberal say “God”, without rolling their eyes or snickering. Liberals are more interested in license than liberty and confuse the two all the time since they believe “What the heck! Rights are only man made! I’m a man, so screw everyone else’s rights cause I can give rights as well as anyone else!” Humanism is the road to collectivism and The Borg. Again, think Post-Modern driven liberalism. It’s not liberal at all.

Liberalism was birthed in “The Enlightenment”. “Kant’s placing of the rational human subject at the center of the cognitive and moral worlds”, seemed to replace ‘Attunement with the Divine’ with Narcissism. Kant’s ideas led to the belief Kant himself was agnostic, which he was not. This misunderstanding and casting away of Christianity by his, of course, liberal followers, led naturally to Engels, Marx and finally Lenin: A perfectly liberal path that actually did happen and continues to spread globally.

Honestly, I’m tired of your diatribe and care for no more interaction with liberals since liberalism is a disease that does not allow one to step outside the limited confines of their weak post-modern philosophies and therefore accompanying weak emotional states. In other words, minds like a steel trap, “Snapped closed and rusted.” Yes, it’s a frightening world out here so just plug your ears and keep repeating “Nyah, nyah, nyah, nyah! I can’t hear you! Nyah,; nyah, nyah, nyah, I can’t hear you.

I’m tired of your jabber and honestly believe you haven’t considered a word I’ve said, nor would you ever in the future. Yes, I’m ‘profiling’ you. You are currently a liberal and engaging a liberal in conversation is like running out of gas on West Lake street under the ‘L’ in Chicago, and having to walk a mile for gas. Best to not interact. If at all possible, just sit in your car and call the cops. I won’t be wasting my time visiting this Obama modified use of the Smith-Mundt Act of 1948 ever again.

Do you also write for CNN and MSNBC, act as a spokesperson for Rachel Maddow in your spare time? Get lost and take your tripe with you. Once I identify propaganda, good-bye and so, goodbye for good to all your trash. Forgive any errors in grammar or spelling, I’ve wasted enough of my time on you.

Mark The Bassist Did not vote.

I’m sorry — you lost all credibility with your apparent belief in the debunked “Graphene Oxide” conspiracy theory. Everything you wrote after that was — well — vitriol. The trouble with today’s conservative minds is that they don’t realize that it is they who epitomize “a trap snapped closed and rusted”. In case you missed the earlier post (January 27, 2017) from jamesofthecommons:

“The tree of liberty must be planted not in the unyielding container of conservatism and thus stunted as bonsai, but rather in the unconfined soil of liberalism and thus allowed to become a great tree, with branches reaching for the even greater sky.”

Jamie Price Doesn't beleive this myth.

If the Founding Fathers saw todays liberals they would have implemented a rule to make sure that todays Liberals/Socialists/Communists would never see any sort of power, but they didn’t think that far ahead. This was their biggest failure to America and it’s not an opinion, it’s an undisputable fact.

Irminsul Supports this as a Fact.

You need to do better research. There were no “Democrats” during the founding of this nation, as the party of Andy Jackson wasn’t founded until 1828.

James Smith Supports this as a Fact.

Yes, they were classical liberals, which would be conservatives and libertarians today. I know that the Founding Fathers didn’t all have the same views, but by today’s standards they would all be in the conservative Republican – Libertarian range.

Jerry Ramey Supports this as a Fact.

The founding fathers of the USA were NOT Classic Liberals or Libertarians. The did not support free market capitalism – They believe and understood that government creates markets NOT people or “rich people”.

Mouser Supports this as a Fact.

Everyone here is getting mired in details and historical vs. contemporary definitions. Liberal and progressive is an open kindness and belief in finding and implementing better more equitable policies and strategies. ( pardon my inability to communicate my thoughts better) the founding fathers were liberal for their times and if they were alive today with the knowledge and history of today would be liberals today.

Richard Cannarella Doesn't beleive this myth.

Oops. Look how many times Jefferson says Conservative here. And look at this quote:

“The wisest conservative power ever contrived by man, is that which our revolution and present government found us possessed”

Guess good ol Thomas proves you wrong here cause he mentioned our revolution and form a government here

Michael Doesn't beleive this myth.

The term Liberal has a completely different meaning today than it did 200+ years ago. Just like prior to the 1960’s the term Gay had nothing to do with being homosexual. The founding fathers were conservative by today’s standards as they supported everything modern liberals oppose.

boolin Did not vote.

Liberal today means something entirely different from what it use to mean. Todays liberals are *mentally challenged* buffoons. They have ruined the word for all eternity.

Jim Balter Did not vote.

“Liberal today means something entirely different from what it use to mean. Todays liberals are *mentally challenged* buffoons. They have ruined the word for all eternity.”

So you’re a liberal, then?

George Gavaras Did not vote.

Classical Liberalism is a proper subset of Modern Liberalism at the nucleus of both is John Locke’s Liberal Philosophy. Modern Liberalism is simply the concurrent evolution of Liberalism with the evolution of Society and the evolution of the concept of Freedom.

Regarding “Socialist: A rejection of capitalism and liberalism, ideologically and economically in favor of Marx. A Communist is an extreme socialist who doesn’t want any sort of mixed-socioeconomic system.” Nonsense. Socialism has its roots in Communalism which long preceded Marx. Communism and Socialism are in no way synonyms. End State Communism is very Libertarian in charater.

Simon Clute Did not vote.

I would have to argue that many of them held conservative values such as Thomas Jefferson or James Madison, the author of the Deceleration of Independence and of the bill of rights. Like seriously, for any casual readers reading this who don’t want to pick up a book, listen to Hamilton.

jamesofthecommons Did not vote.

I agree with much of what you have written on this site; that said, your claim as to the founders being ”classical” liberals, as opposed to just simply being liberals, is not at all based upon fact. It would be much more accurate and honest to say that some of the founders were more liberal than others and that even amongst the most liberal of the founders, differing ideas were held as to how best to assure human liberty.
As to the so called, classical liberal founders favoring capitalism; it is important to note that no true liberal would hold the conviction that liberalism should be defined by support for capitalism, and or private property. It is important to note, that no where in the constitution, is capitalism declared to be of fundamental value to the purpose of the founding of the nation, and it is just as important to note, that the constitution allows for government regulation of market activities at both the state and federal level. Not only does the founding documents allow for government regulation of economic activity, said documents make it clear that the needs of the public, are vital enough of an interest, to allow for the legal taking of private property, given that just compensation be given to the property owner. Keep in mind, that the King of England, nor any of the Royal authorities of the old world, were in the habit of taking private property for public use ! Old world loyalty were better known for the enclosures of common lands and then latter, the taking of private property, for their own personal use. In short, our liberal founders, if they are to be considered capitalists at all, certainly can not be considered to be promoters of unregulated, capitalism. This being the case, it is incorrect to say that the founders were classical liberals that were somehow different to modern liberals whom believe that to promote human liberty, capitalism must be regulated by government and shaped in such a way, as to promote the welfare of all Americans and not just the wealthy.

Wastrel Did not vote.

At that time, the word “liberal” meant “generous” or “suitable for a free man.” The Founding Fathers were liberal in the sense that they were generous to their slaves and treated them well. (Generous to others, as well, one should suppose, but that doesn’t make the point.) 🙂

The word “liberal” did not mean a political orientation until after World War One, and probably was not commonly used until the institution of the social programs to get out of the Great Depression.

Jim Balter Did not vote.

“At that time, the word “liberal” meant …”

This page isn’t about what some word meant in 18th century America, but rather whether the Founders were liberals (according to how we use the word now).

Richard Cannarella Doesn't beleive this myth.

And that’s the mistake you are making….about how wheather the word “now” applies to back then. They weren’t calling themselves liberals