An old military adage calls for the cavalry to “ride to the sound of the guns.” As a tactic, it has both its strengths and weaknesses. As a sentiment, it is a call for courageous engagement. At the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, we hope to answer that call. Through education, litigation, and participation in public discourse, we seek to advance the public interest in the rule of law, individual liberty, constitutional government, and a robust civil society. We strive to do so, moreover, in partnership with like-minded individuals and organizations – often our clients – who are committed to classical liberalism and constitutional government.
We recognize that these ideals are neither Democratic nor Republican, but American. Our focus is primarily, if not exclusively, on Wisconsin – a state that has become one of the focal points of our ongoing debate about the proper role of the government within society and of the courts within government. As a non-profit and non-partisan organization, we litigate in the areas of property rights, the freedom to earn a living, voting rights, regulation, taxation, school choice, and religious freedom. As an educational organization, we strive to advance the debate concerning law and public policy in these and other areas.
The rights of persons, and the right of property, are the objects, for the protection of which government was instituted.
The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield, and government to gain ground.
Those who made and endorsed our Constitution knew man's nature, and it is to their ideas, rather than to the temptations of utopia, that we must ask that our judges adhere.
There are four essential economic freedoms. First is the freedom to work. Second of those freedoms is the freedom to enjoy the fruits of one’s labor. Third is the freedom to own and control one’s property. Fourth is the freedom to participate in a free market—to contract freely for goods and services and to achieve one’s full potential without government limits on opportunity, economic independence, and growth.
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