Editor at Large at Reason and Prominent Libertarian
Nick Gillespie is an editor at large at Reason, the libertarian magazine of “free minds and free markets,” and host of The Reason Interview With Nick Gillespie. A two-time finalist for digital National Magazine Awards for his work on “UPS vs. FEDEX: Ultimate Whiteboard Mix” and the documentary series Reason Saves Cleveland with Drew Carey: How to Fix the Mistake on the Lake and Other Once-Great American Cities, Gillespie is co-author, with Matt Welch, of The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What’s Wrong With America.
“Nick Gillespie is to libertarianism what Lou Reed is to rock ‘n’ roll, the quintessence of its outlaw spirit,” writes Robert Draper in The New York Times Magazine. “For the past 20 years, Gillespie has been a writer, editor and intellectual godfather for Reason, the movement’s leading journal since its founding in 1968.” The Daily Beast named him one of “The Right’s Top 25 Journalists,” calling him “clear-headed, brainy…[and] among the foremost libertarians in America.”
Gillespie served as the editor in chief Reason.com and Reason TV from 2008 through 2017 and was Reason magazine’s editor in chief from 2000 to 2008. Under his direction, Reason won the 2005 Western Publications Association “Maggie” Award for Best Political Magazine. Gillespie originally joined Reason’s staff in 1993 as an assistant editor and ascended to the top slot in 2000. In 2004, Gillespie edited the book Choice: The Best of Reason, an anthology of the magazine’s best articles. The Washington Post featured Gillespie’s tenure at Reason magazine, asking, “Which monthly magazine editor argues that the spread of pornography is a victory for free expression? And that drugs from marijuana to heroin should not only be legalized, but using them occasionally is just fine? And is also quite comfortable with gay marriage? The answer is Nick Gillespie, libertarian and doctor of literature, who…is injecting [Reason] with a pop-culture sensibility.”
Gillespie’s work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, Slate, Salon, Time.com, Marketplace, and numerous other publications. He has been a columnist for Time and The Daily Beast and he was a regular contributor to the late, lamented satire site, Suck, where he wrote under the name Mr. Mxyzptlk.
He is a frequent commentator on radio and television networks such as National Public Radio, CNBC, CNN, C-SPAN, Fox Business, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, and PBS. He has worked as a reporter for several New Jersey newspapers and as an editor at several Manhattan-based music, movie, and teen magazines. He is almost certainly the only journalist to have interviewed both Ozzy Osbourne and Nobel laureates in economics such as Milton Friedman and Vernon Smith.
In 1996, Gillespie received his Ph.D. in English literature from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He also holds an M.A. in English with a concentration in creative writing from Temple University and a B.A. in English and Psychology from Rutgers University. Gillespie, the father of two sons, lives in New York City.
The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What's Wrong with America
This is a half-hour-long multimedia talk featuring Reason.tv videos and slides. It presents the thesis of the book, which is that everywhere outside of politics--the workplace, the cultural arena, online, in our individual identities and roles --our lives are getting better. Politics, however, has yet to embrace the individualization and personalization that is happening in other parts of our lives, which helps explain why party affiliation is way down over the past 40 years and why independents are flourishing--along with groups such as the Tea Party, which is wisely keeping an arm's length from partisan politics to maximize its influence. The question before us is how to bring the same forces that have made so much of our lives better to politics (a question Nick answers in the talk).