Founding Fathers Archives | The Ayn Rand Institute
Government And Business

A Charter of Power Granted by Liberty

“In Europe, charters of liberty have been granted by power. America has set the example . . . of charters of power granted by liberty.” James Madison wrote these words in 1792, five years after the Constitution began its journey toward ratification by the states. Today marks the 227th anniversary of that beginning — the signing of the Constitution by the 39 delegates to the Philadelphia convention. Madison’s statement is one of my favorites because it conveys, more than any other quote I can think of, the proper relationship between individuals and government, which is a key part of the profound moral significance of the Constitution and the government it created.

Further Reading

Ayn Rand | 1957
For the New Intellectual

The Moral Meaning of Capitalism

An industrialist who works for nothing but his own profit guiltlessly proclaims his refusal to be sacrificed for the “public good.”
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Ayn Rand | 1961
The Virtue of Selfishness

The Objectivist Ethics

What is morality? Why does man need it? — and how the answers to these questions give rise to an ethics of rational self-interest.
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