Everyone is familiar with Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and the brave men who founded this nation and brought forth the Constitution as the ruling document which constrains government. However where did they get the ideas? You might recall that England was where our founding fathers were from, and as such so are the ideas from which our government came into being. Many of the freedoms we have enjoyed as Americans can be traced back to the two individuals for which are the foundation of the Locke & Smith award.
John Locke is widely viewed as the father of liberalism in the purest form of the word, as he wrote of liberty and social contracts of and for the individual. John Locke believed the ownership of property is created by the application of labor and that property rights precede government. Locke’s teachings and writings of natural law gives credence to the Constitution statement to the right of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Much of our economy can be traced backed to Locke’s concepts known as supply and demand; he also brought forth the concept known as the rights of the individual.
Adam Smith is widely viewed as the father of modern day economics. Early in his teaching career Smith gave lectures, which met with much success, on the concepts of the obvious and simple system of natural liberty. As a believer in free markets and the individual, Smith’s views on limited government intervention was practiced in this nation up until about 1913, where history will show the growth of the federal government expanded beyond the realm of the rights of the individual. Smith believed governments were instrumental in prohibiting the free exercise of coercion, fraud, and deceit, thusly making minimal laws to correct those actions from which people expect government to protect them from.
It is the concepts of John Locke and Adam Smith that all passed legislation has been thoroughly researched, reviewed and graded by the legislative committee. Attention to detail was not overlooked as these have been reviewed for content, impact on economic circumstances of the individual and the governments (local, state, and federal), and lastly an increase or decrease in the size, scope, and power of government.