Thomas Spragens attempts to rebuild liberal theory, arguing realist, libertarian, egalitarian, and identity liberals all have valid insights, but develop them one- sidedly. Re-examining the work of 16th and 17th century liberals leads to a more balanced foundation. His often impressive effort is undermined by insufficient appreciation of the role scale plays in liberal and democratic theory and to confusions over civic friendship. Appreciation of Hayekian insights about spontaneous order and of the limits of citizen knowledge in large polities would help him with the first problem. Distinguishing between friendship, friendliness, and social capital would help resolve problems with the second.
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