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4.3 out of 5 stars
Latter-day Liberty: A Gospel Approach to Government and Politics
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on December 22, 2011
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Six months ago I was completely apathetic when it came to anything that had to do with politics. Connor's book has helped to cure my apathy. I love this book. In my opinion this is a must read for all liberty lovers out there!

Prior to reading Connor's book I was browsing the internet one day and came across an article written by Mark Skousen entitled, "Persuasion vs. Force." I was so impressed by Skousen's words that I decided I better take a more serious approach to understanding the constitution and finding the correct ways in which to support liberty. After a great deal of learning and searching I ended up finding a talk written by Ezra Taft Benson in which he defines beautifully the proper role of the government. Even so, I still found myself with a lot of unanswered questions.

After reading both Skousen's and Benson's political views I found myself motivated to search for liberty minded individuals that I could grow and learn from. I stumbled upon Connor's website and found out he had written a book on the very subject of the issues that I had so many questions about. I was even more happy to find that the both Benson and Skousen's articles which were so influential to me were both included in his book!

I have since read through his entire book twice and I absolutly love it! This is a book that all latter-day saints should read. Connor is a brilliant thinker/writer - you won't be sorry once you order this book.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on November 22, 2011
Format: Paperback
I have never met Connor Boyack. We are friends on Facebook, and I enjoy his blog Connor's Conundrums, which deals with politics from a Mormon perspective. Let there be no doubt: Connor is a real libertarian, not a mamby-pamby fly-by-night libertarian like somebody like me. He hates the state with a passion, and could correctly be described as a Rothbardian anarcho-capitalist. He is anti-war, anti-state and pro-market, but most importantly pro-liberty.

But the truth is that we are living in the age of libertarianism, mostly because all of the predictions made by people like Rothbard are becoming true literally before our eyes. There is no way of understanding our current economic malaise (in my opinion) without understanding the key role of monetary policy in creating stagflation and without understanding that business cycles are inevitable. Markets must be allowed to clear. Government intervention, as we have seen with TARP and the many bailouts, only makes things worse, and at the end of the day it is the poor and the middle-class workers who suffer the most while the well-connected profit from our misery. Meanwhile, we are seeing the folly and horror of endless wars and the loss of our civil liberties.

Connor's positions make many intellectual Mormons very uncomfortable. He is clearly a smart guy, but he is so darned dogmatic. And he seems to think he know the answer to everything. And he is so consistent, always arguing for more liberty and less government. Doesn't he know the world is much more complicated than he claims? And doesn't he know that all good Mormons must always be in favor of more government to show they actually care about the poor.

Well, as Connor shows in his book "Latter-Day Liberty, A Gospel Approach to Government and Politics," all good Mormons should be in favor of liberty, not confiscating other peoples' money so you can be beneficent with it. But make no mistake: Connor's book will also make many traditional conservatives very uncomfortable. He is anti-war and lays out an unassailable case that the Book of Mormon creates a well-developed just war theory. He is pro-immigrant, pointing out that "it is an inescapable fact that the current immigration laws are founded upon racism and protectionism." And he is against the war on drugs.

To sum up: Connor Boyack will upset a lot of people with this book.

Still, "Latter-Day Liberty" is, in my opinion, one of those books that Mormons simply must read. It is a groundbreaking book at a crucial time. In this day and age, a book must have an original, compelling message and also have a good self-promoting author to be successful. "Latter-Day Liberty" has both.

This book has a forward by Mark Skousen, perhaps the most famous living libertarian Mormon. He started Freedom Fest, the single biggest libertarian event of the year, which takes place every July in Las Vegas. Ron Paul also has read Connor's book, and gives it a great review. Tom Woods, perhaps the smartest living economist and historian, also gives it a hearty thumbs-up.

So this is a book that you should take very seriously. Many intellectual Mormons will be talking about it. I predict great angst on the part of left-leaning Mormons, a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth, that Connor dares to challenge progressive orthodoxy. But I also predict many conservative Mormons will sputter and spew about his "isolationist" foreign policy and his support of "amnesty" for illegal immigrants.

But Connor makes his points brilliantly, mixing basic logic with literally hundreds of quotations from modern-day prophets and the scriptures. I predict very few of the people who try to refute Connor's book will be able to do so without resorting to ad hominems: his arguments are simply too good and too consistent to be overcome very easily.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on April 27, 2012
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
This is a brilliant book. The author is logical, calm, and connects the dots all through the book. I never get the sense at any point that he's simply ranting. It's very well written, and very thoroughly researched, using both LDS sources and sources outside the LDS faith. This is a challenging book. I think I got smarter just trying to read it.

This book is stimulating. I would be hard pressed to find someone who can read this book and not seriously ponder the connections between all truths, both spiritual and temporal, and how al truths cross such barriers. For example, if unrighteous dominion is wrong between within the family or between neighbors, it is also wrong between government and people or between nations.

I highly recommend this book to people of all walks of life and faith. This has something for everyone to learn. I am going to buy Mr. Connor's second book when it becomes available.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Disclaimer: I know the author personally. We're not good buds, we've never hung out at each other's house, but I've met with him a few times for lunch and we communicate a bit online.

That said, I wouldn't be here reviewing the book if I didn't think it stood on its merits. Frankly, I wasn't expecting anything too amazing. I am generally let down by any work of literature coming from the LDS population, and given that this was of a political nature and people tend to get emotional and lose their sense of logic and reason with such matters you might expect this to be sub-par even when compared to the body of extant LDS literature. My only caveat was that having following Boyack's blog, I knew he was capable of coming up with good stuff.

I am most of the way through the book now, and I've been pleasantly surprised. The book is well organized, clearly written, and gets its message across with a reasoned approach that is anything but emotionally charged. For the converted libertarian who is also LDS, it is a great tool to supplement efforts to convert one's family members and friends who might be a bit confused about the libertarian message.

In my opinion there is minor room for improvement in that I think a later part of the book that talks about the Libertarian Party might be moved towards the front of the book to clarify the distinction between Libertarians and libertarians, the Libertarian Party vs. libertarian principles, and all the other different strains of libertarianism (green, limited government vs. anarcho capitalists, etc.).

One challenge the book faces is that it requires the reader to have some level of intellectual understanding and at least a minimal background in US history, economics, etc. This is not "Libertarianism for Dummies". There are parts where it might get a bit dry for some readers, but I don't fault the book for that, I'm just saying there are some people who might find it boring. But if the person has no more basis in these concepts than having listened to Rush Limbaugh for a year they should be good to go, so it's not as though this book is for PhDs.

If you're Mormon and have the slightest interest in politics, economics, or history, I'd highly recommend this book. I'd give it five stars but it's Connor's first book, and then where would he go from there?
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on January 10, 2012
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Masterfully written, Connor Boyack underlines the principles of sound government using powerful examples from the Constitution, the Scriptures, Latter-Day Prophets and from our Founding Fathers. Truly, it is an objective approach, yet asserts a compelling case.

Few books that I have read have had a distinct residual impression as "Latter-Day Liberty" has. My expectations have been greatly exceeded.

This should be basic curriculum for Latter-Day Saints who have a great love for Constitutional principles. I will be recommending it highly based on its own merits.

I expect this book to grow in importance and to become a foundational pillar of LDS political thought in years to come.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on December 19, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
This is a very insightful book that explains the true meaning of freedom and liberty! As someone who has struggled with political views for quite some time, this book made sense. Boyack does a wonderful job applying gospel principles to the concept of liberty. This book is proof that someone can be both a temple recommend holding member of the LDS church and a card carrying libertarian.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I've grown up in the LDS church so I was familiar with the positions of past Mormon authorities endorsing republican variations of "limited government" etc. Connor's marketing approach clearly is to cater to the constant need many "small-government" Mormons feel, by giving them the ammunition they need to continue believing that their views are a sanctioned doctrine. That mindset is increasingly difficult to maintain because of the so many other ways the Church and leaders (past and present) are contradicting that idea. Thus, there is a veracious and profitable demand for constant reinforcement of libertarian ideas as coming from Mormon authorities.

As someone who has done a lot of reading on the moral and philosophical basis for liberty (from Locke and Mill to Rothbard and Rand) the book left me wanting for any original contribution to the centuries-old discussion. However, If you already gravitate to libertarian ideas and you need some way to fit it into the context of Mormonism this book is a good choice.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 18, 2013
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Boyack shows the genius of the principles our Founding Fathers used to establish the most free country this world has ever seen. Latter-day Liberty shows the connection of Freedom to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Prophets today and in the past have warned us of our liberties being taken away and Latter-day Liberty makes the case that every Latter-day Saint (mormon) should be Libertarian because Liberty is the Gospel. 5 stars Connor, keep it up!
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on December 7, 2011
Format: Paperback
Latter-Day Liberty is not one of those LDS books with subpar, fuzzy feel-good writing. Boyack, a web developer by trade, delivers a clear and methodical discourse that has the potential of revolutionalizing the modern Mormon's political thought, if approached with an open mind. "Liberty" and "freedom" are popular buzzwords on the campaign trail, but what is liberty actually? Is it possible that a Mormon's definition of liberty has more to do with what Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity have told them than what modern-day prophets and apostles and scriptures have revealed? Boyack reintroduces the reader to this subject that many in the LDS faith mistakenly believe they are already intimately familiar and gives them an opportunity to reevaluate their traditional political thought in light of the historical facts and spiritual insights he presents.

With just one book behind him, Boyack has impressively poised himself to be the next great LDS thinker (I believe he will be placed in the same category as W. Cleon Skousen), by skillfully engaging the reader with sound logic, intellectual reasoning, and hundreds of insightful quotes and scriptures to make a case for liberty in a world that is increasingly set on trading away one of God's most precious gifts for state-promised security (which, of course, is no security at all). Latter-Day Liberty could not have been written at a better time.
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on October 17, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
This book is written from a Latter-day Saint (Mormon) point of view and will resonate with the Latter-day Saints, but it is NOT just for them. This book points out how the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of liberty, personal choice and responsibility. Quotes from Scriptures and General Authorities are used throughout. Mr. Boyack has written a thoughtful, well reasoned book. It is sure to raise some eyebrows among some Mormons, but Mr. Boyack is clearly a true blue believer and the book is written from a faithful perspective. I highly recommend his book. Both my wife and I have read it and enjoyed it thoroughly.
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