Ronald Bailey, in The Science of Libertarian Morality (an article in Reason) directs us to:
Understanding Libertarian Morality: The Psychological Roots of an Individualist Ideology by Ravi Iyer et al. Which, by the way, bases one of its "predictions" on the title of Reason. And thus the echo chamber is closed.
The fundamental fallacy of this paper purporting to discuss "psychological roots" that surveys DEVELOPED attitudes is that they do not consider the indoctrination process. Libertarians differ strongly from liberals and conservatives in that they are heavily indoctrinated at early ages. Ask a 25 year old how many liberal, conservative, or libertarian books they've read. Most liberal and conservative 25 year olds will say very few if any, but we know that the libertarians will reel off a list starting with Ayn Rand, the Friedman's, etc. You might just as well ask where Catholic ideas about God come from compared to atheists: it's the indoctrination, stupid.
If they truly wanted to study "psychological roots", they should start with 16 year olds (most of whom have no idea of libertarianism) and observe how they change with time.
They make the ridiculous "prediction" that "Libertarians will value liberty more strongly and consistently than liberals or conservatives, at the expense of other moral concerns." That's about as serious as predicting that "Zombies will value eating brains more strongly and consistently than humans, at the expense of other moral concerns." They cite the writings of Ayn Rand as a source for this prediction: I must then cite Dawn Of the Dead, I suppose.
Another huge problem is that they have really drunk the Kool-Aid of adopting libertarian terminology and propaganda claims throughout their paper.
Take, for example, "It is clear, then, that libertarians cannot be readily classified on the standard left-right dimension." No, that is not at all clear as anybody familiar with Lakoff 2002 would know. Lakoff clearly places libertarians in the conservative (right) end of the scale. They cite Lakoff 2002 just a few paragraphs earlier, but haven't the wits or honesty to admit that some real academics disagree. Nor is it clear that there is a single definition of "the standard left-right dimension."
The methodology is also highly susceptible to spoofing: they've used an internet survey site open to anybody. As anyone from Pharyngula would know, it is easy to send droves of readers with similar points of view over to any poll. And it took me about two minutes to find the first example of libertarians being steered over to it: "If you’re interested in answering that question, and consider yourself libertarian, register at yourmorals.org and take the Moral Foundations Questionnaire."
What we have here is an attitude survey of libertarians which is larded by repetition of standard libertarian talking points with no academic credibility. These talking points are the product of decades-long public relations campaigns, which (among other things) rely on incessant repetition of propaganda. Funding of this "study" by an investment banker strongly suggests to me that this is just another excuse to repeat propaganda yet again.
I will be very interested to see where this "study" gets published.