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A classical liberal view of the role of government

The government’s role consists of a set of duties.

  1. Defend the realm.
  2. Make justice available.
  3. Make land available so that all have the means to a livelihood.
  4. Deal with emergencies.
  5. Collect the rent of land to pay for the above.

This gives rise to corresponding duties among the people.

  1.  Support the defence of the realm.
  2. Act justly.
  3. Keep the land in good condition.
  4. Act in the event of emergencies.
  5.  Pay the rent of land.

This implies that there are negative duties, including a duty not to interfere with the free exchange of goods and services, including the levying of taxes on such exchanges. In this system, trade is regulated by the Duty of Care of those who supply goods and services and falls under duty (2).