This volume presents a representative sampling of James M. Buchanan’s philosophical views as he deals with fundamental problems of moral science and moral order. As one might expect, Buchanan always goes back to fundamental principles first. From there, his observations and conclusions range far and wide from his own discipline.
The thirty essays collected in Moral Science and Moral Order are divided into these categories:
1.Methods and Models
2.Belief and Consequence
3.Moral Community and Moral Order
4.Moral Science, Equality, and Justice
"In his foreword, Hartmut Kliemt says, “The British and Scottish Moralists of the Enlightenment period would have felt very comfortable with James Buchanan. Like them, Buchanan may be seen as a ‘man of letters’ who concerns himself with fundamental problems of moral science and moral order. But, also like them, Buchanan is not a secondhand dealer in old ideas. On the contrary, taking as inspiration classical philosopher-economists (in particular, Adam Smith), Buchanan not only proposes new applications of the neoclassical economic paradigm, he also addresses, in innovative ways, fundamental issues of his discipline and beyond.”
Kliemt’s lengthy foreword highlights some of the major philosophical currents with which Buchanan is engaged in the papers collected in this volume. His introduction to these philosophies provides an excellent grounding for economists and all readers who may not be familiar with the philosophical and fundamental issues Buchanan undertakes. "
James M. Buchanan
In 1986 James M. Buchanan (1919-2012) was awarded the Alfred Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. Universally respected as one of the founders of the “public choice” school of economics, he is the author of numerous books and hundreds of articles in the areas of public finance, public choice, constitutional economics and economic philosophy. He is best known for such works as The Calculus of Consent, The Limits of Liberty, The Power to Tax, and The Reason of Rules. Buchanan has devoted himself to the study of the contractual and constitutional basis for the theory of economic and political decision making.
See also at Econlib: the Concise Encyclopedia of Economics entry on Buchanan