David T. Beito

David T. Beito (born 1956) is a historian and professor of history at the University of Alabama.[1] He is the author of Taxpayers in Revolt: Tax Resistance during the Great Depression (1989); From Mutual Aid to the Welfare State: Fraternal Societies and Social Services, 1890–1967 (2000); The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society (2002); and T.R.M. Howard: Doctor, Entrepreneur, Civil Rights Pioneer (2018) which was co-authored by Professor Linda Royster Beito of Stillman College). It is a biography of civil rights leader, surgeon, entrepreneur and self-help advocate, T. R. M. Howard, who was a mentor to Medgar Evers and Fannie Lou Hamer, and was reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, Harper's Magazine, and other publications.

Beito is the founder and one of the key contributors to the group weblog Liberty and Power, which is located at the History News Network.[2] He manages the Facebook group for classical liberal and libertarian historians, Cliolibertarian.


Beito was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He received a B.A. in history from the University of Minnesota in 1980 and a Ph.D in history from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1986. Since 1994, he has taught at the University of Alabama, where he is a professor in history. He married Linda Royster Beito on June 11, 1997 and they live in Northport, Alabama.

Beito’s research covers a wide range of topics in American history including race, tax revolts, the private provision of infrastructure, mutual aid, and the political philosophies of Zora Neale Hurston, Rose Wilder Lane, and Isabel Paterson.

Beito has published in the Journal of Interdisciplinary History, Journal of Policy History, Journal of Southern History, and Journal of Urban History among other scholarly journals. He has received fellowships from the Earhart Foundation, the Olin Foundation, and the Institute for Humane Studies.

He writes frequently on current controversies related to academic freedom and academic standards including the speech code issue, the Academic Bill of Rights, grade inflation. He is a former president of the Alabama Scholars Association. In February 2007, Beito was appointed to chair the Alabama State Advisory Committee of the United States Commission on Civil Rights. In April, 2008, the Committee had an open meeting at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham which focused on eminent domain as a possible civil rights issue. It followed this up with another open meeting in April 2009 in Montgomery.[3] Witnesses alleged that the city of Montgomery has arbitrarily used "eminent domain through the back door" (via selective use of nuisance and blight laws) to demolish buildings owned by minorities and the poor. These allegations generated stories by ABC News, Fox News, and other outlets.


  • Taxpayers in Revolt: Tax Resistance during the Great Depression, University of North Carolina Press (Chapel Hill), 1989.
  • From Mutual Aid to the Welfare State: Fraternal Societies and Social Services, University of North Carolina Press (Cambridge), 1992.
  • T.R.M. Howard: Doctor, Entrepreneur, Civil Rights Pioneer (Oakland: Independent Institute), 2018. ISBN 978-1-59813-312-7

Edited books

  • The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society, University of Michigan Press for The Independent Institute (Ann Arbor), 2002.

Selected articles and chapters in collections

Reviews of Beito's work and interviews


  1. ^ Walker, Jesse (2011-02-22) People Who Live in the Shade, Reason
  2. ^ Beito, David (2011-04-04) You Must Own This Book! (Raico's Great Wars and Great Leaders), LewRockwell.com
  3. ^ Beito, David (2009-05-02) Something is Rotten in Montgomery, LewRockwell.com

External links

Academic Bill of Rights

The Academic Bill of Rights (ABOR) is a document created and distributed by Students for Academic Freedom (SAF), a public advocacy group spun off from the Center for the Study of Popular Culture, a think tank founded by the conservative writer David Horowitz. The document was created as a foundational part of SAF's mission, to "end the political abuse of the university and to restore integrity to the academic mission as a disinterested pursuit of knowledge."

The Bill focuses on eight broad-based principles that call for an academic environment where decisions are made irrespective of one's personal political or religious beliefs. The Bill (and its drafting organization) have come under sharp attack, however, for using broad-based egalitarian principles and a self-identified "bipartisan" framework to promote what critics identify as an ideological agenda.

Amzie Moore

Amzie Moore (September 23, 1911 – February 1, 1982) was an African-American civil rights leader and entrepreneur in the Mississippi Delta.


Antiwar.com is a libertarian website which describes itself as devoted to "non-interventionism" and as opposing imperialism and war. It is a project of the Randolph Bourne Institute. The website states that it is "fighting the next information war: we are dedicated to the proposition that war hawks and our leaders are not going to be allowed to get away with it unopposed and unchallenged."

Association of Real Estate Taxpayers

The Association of Real Estate Taxpayers (ARET) was an organization of real-estate taxpayers in Chicago and Cook County, Illinois. Between 1931 and 1933, it organized one of the largest tax strikes in American history. The group had been founded in 1930 by several wealthy real-estate owners.

The chief demand of ARET was that local and state governments obey a long-ignored provision of the Illinois Constitution of 1870 requiring uniform taxation for all forms of property. John M. Pratt and James E. Bistor charged that the failure to assess such personal property as furniture, cars, and stocks and bonds was not only illegal but left owners of real estate with excessive burdens. ARET's program also included support for sweeping rate reductions in the general property tax and retrenchment in local governmental spending.

ARET functioned primarily as a cooperative legal service. Each member paid annual dues of $15 to fund lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of real-estate assessments. The suits, when finally filed, took the form of a 7,000-page, two-foot-thick book listing the names and tax data for all 26,000 co-litigants.The radical side of the movement became apparent by early 1931 when ARET called for taxpayers to withhold real-estate taxes (or "strike") pending a final ruling by the Illinois Supreme Court, and later the U.S. Supreme Court. Mayor Anton Cermak and other politicians desperately tried to break the strike by threatening criminal prosecution and revocation of city services.

ARET's influence peaked in late 1932, with a membership approaching 30,000 (largely skilled workers and small-business owners.) By this time, it had a budget of over $600,000 and a radio show in Chicago. But it suffered a demoralizing blow in October 1932 when the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a case it had brought. Buffeted by political coercion and legal defeats, and torn by internal factionalism, the strike collapsed in early 1933.


Beito is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

David T. Beito (born 1956), American historian

Linda Royster Beito, American political scientist

Olav Beito (1901–1989), Norwegian linguist

Charles Erskine Scott Wood

Charles Erskine Scott Wood or C.E.S. Wood (February 20, 1852 – January 22, 1944) was an American author, civil liberties advocate, artist, soldier, attorney, and Georgist. He is best known as the author of the 1927 satirical bestseller, Heavenly Discourse.

Eugene Siler

Eugene Siler (June 26, 1900 – December 5, 1987) was a member of the United States House of Representatives from Kentucky between 1955 and 1965. He was the only member of the House of Representatives to oppose (by pairing against) the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. That resolution authorized deeper involvement of the United States in the Vietnam War.

History News Network

History News Network (HNN) at George Washington University is a platform for historians writing about current events.

James E. Bistor

James Eugene Bistor (July 20, 1890 – March 3, 1945) was a tax resistance leader, and real estate operator and broker. Along with John M. Pratt, he led the probably the largest tax strike since the Era of the American Revolution.

John M. Palmer (politician)

John McAuley Palmer (September 13, 1817 – September 25, 1900) was an Illinois resident, an American Civil War General who fought for the Union, the 15th Governor of Illinois, and presidential candidate of the National Democratic Party in the 1896 election on a platform to defend the gold standard, free trade, and limited government.

Palmer switched political parties throughout his life, starting out a Democrat. He became in turn an anti-Nebraska Democrat (against state sovereignty on slavery), a Republican, a Liberal Republican, returned to being a Democrat, then ended as a Bourbon Democrat. He said, "I had my own views. I was not a slave of any party," and added, "I thought for myself and [have] spoken my own words on all occasions."

Liberty and Power

Liberty and Power is a group weblog established in 2003 and is part of the History News Network of the Center for History and New Media. The members share a libertarian or classical liberal perspective. They are primarily university professors and represent diverse fields. Past guest bloggers have included Nicholas Von Hoffman, a former 60 Minutes commentator. Most, but not all, of the members are critical of the Iraq War.

Liberty and Power played an important role in shaping coverage of several news stories. For example, journalists Debra Pickett of the Chicago Sun-Times, Ellen Barry of the Los Angeles Times, and Jerry Mitchell of the Clarion-Ledger quoted David T. Beito because of his entries on the Emmett Till case. Beito had conducted the first interviews in decades with Henry Lee Loggins, an alleged participant in the crime, and Willie Reed, a trial witness.

Entries opposing the Academic Bill of Rights sparked a running debate on Liberty and Power with David Horowitz, the chief sponsor of the bill. They were also instrumental in two articles on the subject for the American Historical Association and the Organization of American Historians.

Linda Royster Beito

Linda Royster Beito is professor of political science and criminal justice at Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

National Democratic Party (United States)

The National Democratic Party, also known as Gold Democrats, was a short-lived political party of Bourbon Democrats who opposed the regular party nominee William Jennings Bryan in the 1896 presidential election.

Most members were admirers of Grover Cleveland as they considered Bryan a dangerous man and charged that his "free silver" proposals would devastate the economy. They nominated the Democratic politicians John M. Palmer, a former Republican Governor of Illinois and Union General; and Simon Bolivar Buckner, a former Governor of Kentucky and Confederate General, for President and Vice President, respectively.

They also ran a few candidates for Congress and other offices, including William Campbell Preston Breckinridge in Kentucky.

Operation Breadbasket

Operation Breadbasket was an organization dedicated to improving the economic conditions of black communities across the United States of America.

Operation Breadbasket was founded as a department of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in 1962, and was operated by Rev. Fred C. Bennette of Atlanta. The first activities were in Atlanta and other Southern cities.

A key figure in the later history of Operation Breadbasket was Jesse Jackson. In 1964, Jackson left his native South Carolina to study at the Chicago Theological Seminary. He participated in SCLC's movement in Selma. When Jackson returned from Selma, he joined SCLC's effort to establish a beachhead in Chicago.

In 1966, SCLC selected Jackson to be head of the Chicago chapter of its Operation Breadbasket. Influenced by the example of Rev. Leon H. Sullivan in Philadelphia, a key goal of the organization was to foster "selective buying" (boycotts) as a means to pressure white businesses to hire blacks and purchase goods and services from black contractors. Sullivan's plan was not without its predecessors. One was Dr. T.R.M. Howard, a wealthy doctor and community leader on the South Side and key financial contributor to Operation Breadbasket. Before he moved from Mississippi to Chicago, Howard had developed a national reputation as a civil rights leader, surgeon, and entrepreneur.As head of the Regional Council of Negro Leadership, Howard had successfully organized a boycott of service-stations that refused to provide restrooms for blacks. Jackson's application of these methods, however, had a seamier aspect including cronyism and strong-arming businesses to donate money to Operation Breadbasket.Noah Robinson, Jr., who had just graduated from the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce of the University of Pennsylvania, came to Chicago in 1969, to become full-time director of the Commercial Division of Operation Breadbasket. Robinson was Jesse Jackson's half-brother and sometime rival. Robinson would later be sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering a rival known as Leroy Barber.

In December 1971, Jackson had a falling-out with Ralph Abernathy, King's successor as head of the SCLC. Jackson and his allies broke off from SCLC and formed the wholly independent Operation PUSH (People United to Save Humanity). The founding goals were similar to those of the Operation Breadbasket. Despite Jackson's departure, Operation Breadbasket continued for a brief time under Robinson's leadership.

Private road

A private road is a road owned and maintained by a private individual, organization, or company rather than by a government.

Consequently, unauthorized use of the road may be considered trespassing, and some of the usual rules of the road may not apply — however, in some cases the owner of the road may permit the general public to use the road at their own risk. The most common types of private road are residential roads maintained by a homeowners association, housing co-op, or other group of individual homeowners, and industrial roads maintained by a corporation for access to an industrial facility.


Rainbow/PUSH is a non-profit organization formed as a merger of two non-profit organizations founded by Jesse Jackson — Operation PUSH (People United to Save Humanity) and the National Rainbow Coalition. The organizations pursue social justice, civil rights and political activism.

In December 1971, Jackson resigned from Operation Breadbasket after clashing with Rev. Ralph Abernathy and founded Operation PUSH. Jackson founded the National Rainbow Coalition in 1984 which merged with PUSH in 1996. The combined organization keeps its national headquarters on the South Side of Chicago and has branches in Washington, D.C., New York City, Los Angeles, Detroit, Houston, Atlanta, the Silicon Valley, New Orleans and Boston.

Operation PUSH was successful at raising public awareness to initiate corporate action and government sponsorship. The National Rainbow coalition became a prominent political organization that raised public awareness on numerous political issues and consolidated a large voting block. The merged entity has undertaken numerous social initiatives.

The Voluntary City

The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society is an Independent Institute-published book, edited by David T. Beito, about communities with private provision of municipal services. Contributors include Stephen Davies, Daniel B. Klein, Robert C. Arne, Bruce L. Benson, David G. Green, James Tooley, Fred E. Foldvary, Donald J. Boudreaux, Randall G. Holcombe, Robert H. Nelson, Spencer H. MacCallum, and Alexander Tabarrok. It covers the topics of privatized provision of urban infrastructure, roads, planning, police, charity, medical care, education, and commercial regulation, particularly through examination of historical examples of this provision.

Some criticisms of the book are that it does not adequately address situations such as the accident at Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, where private sector managers failed to install fire suppression equipment or leave the egresses unlocked (a common practice at the time), causing the death of around 146 employees; or the repressive nature of some private communities, including Pullman, Illinois. However, the book has also been praised for its bibliography, which has many useful resources on privatization. Among the examples the book gives of private communities are the private places of St. Louis and the Central Manufacturing District of Chicago.

Voluntarism (action)

Voluntarism, sometimes referred to as voluntary action, is the principle that individuals are free to choose goals and how to achieve them within the bounds of certain societal and cultural constraints, as opposed to actions that are coerced or predetermined.

Voluntary society

A voluntary society, voluntary community or voluntary city is one in which all property (including streets, parks, etc.) and all services (including courts, police, etc.) are provided through voluntary means, such as private or cooperative ownership. In a voluntary society, the notion of something being "privately" or "cooperatively" owned would be radically different from monopolistic "privatization" with state subsidies, or monopolistic control of public resources by the state, respectively. Instead, courts might be replaced with dispute resolution organizations; police with volunteer-based community defense organizations or private security agencies and crime insurers; transportation authorities with community road associations and rail counterparts; etc. These services were the subject of the book, The Voluntary City, which dealt with them chapter-by-chapter.Anarcho-capitalists as well as anti-capitalist market anarchists view voluntary societies as the solution to the conflict between those who favor government allowing behaviors and arrangements such as non-violent drug use, free stores, sexual liberation, voluntary communal sharing (e.g. Food Not Bombs), etc., and those who favor government restrictions on such activities. Those who want to live under a certain code of conduct can move to a community that supports and protects it. Prominent anarcho-capitalists such as Stefan Molyneux suggest that in a voluntary society, dispute resolution organizations and pollution insurance companies would prevent problems such as pollution.

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