Journalist, broadcaster, columnist, former executive editor of The Libertarian Review

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Web Pages

Jeff Riggenbach - Libertarian
Advocates for Self-Government


Book Review: Persuaded by Reason: Joan Kennedy Taylor and the Rebirth of American Individualism, by Sara Budzik, 6 Oct 2014
"Throughout the book, there is a hypnotic tension between the telling of Joan’s story and the dense historical context Riggenbach creates. Particularly during Joan's younger years, before her contributions began to be recognized, Riggenbach takes the opportunity to flash back and develop an entire history of individualism in American, beginning with the divide of the independent and Eurocentric settlers in the first colonies. He touches on Thoreau, Emerson, Whitman, and the American identity of self-reliance."
Related Topic: Joan Kennedy Taylor


In Memoriam [PDF], ALF News, 2006
Biographical essay covering Joan Kennedy Taylor's varied career
"And all along, she was writing – for the Wall Street Journal, for the Washington Times, for Reason and Inquiry and Success and American Enterprise, and for scholarly publications like the Stanford Law & Policy Review, the CommLaw Conspectus: Journal of Communications Law and Policy, and the Journal of Information Ethics."
Jeff Riggenbach on Samuel Edward Konkin III, Freedom Network News: The Journal of the International Society for Individual Liberty, 2004
Lengthy biographical and memorial essay
"Make no mistake about it: we have lost a great libertarian, and we will probably not see his like again. Make no mistake about it: we have lost a great libertarian, and we will probably not see his like again. ... By the time he reached the University of Wisconsin later that same year to begin graduate studies in chemistry, he was a confirmed science fiction fan and was particularly enamored of the works of Robert A. Heinlein."
Meeting Murray Rothbard On the Road to Libertarianism, 4 Jan 2003
Riggenbach recounts his path from an advocate of Ayn Rand's objectivism, later reading LeFevre and attending his lectures to reading Rothbard's "The Anatomy of the State" and eventually meeting and being able to have many conversations with him
"I took my first steps down the road to libertarianism during my junior year in high school (1962–1963), when ... I read Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged ... A few months later, the first issue of my Freeman subscription arrived, and in it I found a definition ... of a word that was also new to me: the word libertarian. With something of a start, I realized that this word described me. I was a 'libertarian' – and not, as I had thought, a conservative."


Faculty Spotlight Interview: Jeff Riggenbach, 18 Mar 2010
"What drew you to the Austrian school and the Ludwig von Mises institute? I began reading works by the Austrian masters – first Rothbard, then Hayek, then Mises – back in the 1970s, because my close friend Roy A. Childs, Jr. was relentlessly talking them up and recommending them. Once I got started, I required no further persuading. They made sense of things in a way few other writers had done."
Related Topic: Murray N. Rothbard

Books Authored

In Praise of Decadence, Nov 1998
Persuaded by Reason: Joan Kennedy Taylor and the Rebirth of American Individualism, 2014
Related Topic: Joan Kennedy Taylor


Karl Hess and the Death of Politics, 13 May 2010
Transcript of the 6 May 2010 "Libertarian Tradition" podcast with a wealth of biographical information
"Karl Hess was born Carl Hess III in Washington DC, 87 years ago this month — on May 25, 1923, to be exact ... the awakening began in the early 1960s, when he was 40 years old ... it was then that he began reading Ayn Rand. ... When he started writing his autobiography ... he chose to portray himself ... as a lifelong libertarian who had, somewhat ironically, spent most of his life wandering around searching for his true political identity and his true ideological home."
Related Topic: Karl Hess
The Libertarian Tradition: Karl Hess and the Death of Politics, 6 May 2010
Detailed biography of Hess, beginning with how his parents met and ending with his activities in the late 1980's and early 1990's before his death
Related Topic: Karl Hess