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Murray Newton Rothbard (March 2, 1926 – January 7, 1995) was an American intellectual, individualist anarchist, author, and economist of the Austrian School who helped define modern libertarianism and popularized a form of free-market anarchism he termed "anarcho-capitalism". Building on the Austrian School's concept of spontaneous order in markets, support for a free market in money production, and condemnation of central planning, Rothbard sought to minimize coercive government control of the economy and considered the monopoly force of government the greatest danger to liberty and the long-term wellbeing of the populace.
Rothbard concluded that taxation represents theft on a grand scale, and "a compulsory monopoly of force" prohibiting the voluntary procurement of defense and judicial services. He also considered central banking and fractional reserve banking under a fiat money system a form of institutionalized, legalized financial fraud, antithetical to libertarian principles and ethics. Rothbard opposed military, political, and economic interventionism in the affairs of other nations. Rothbard wrote over twenty books before his death in 1995.