Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘Liberty’

Wallowing in Welfare-Warfare State Prison – The Future of Freedom Foundation

Posted by M. C. on November 26, 2022

Why should it surprise anyone that some convicts readily trade liberty for security? Isn’t that what the American people have done with their adoption of the welfare-warfare state way of life?

by Jacob G. Hornberger

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A reader recently sent me an email pointing out that many ex-convicts commit new crimes with the intent of being sent back to prison. They actually feel more comfortable in prison than they do in the outside world.

This phenomenon shouldn’t surprise us. In prison, the state takes care of prisoners and, by and large, keeps them safe. It provides their food, healthcare, and clothing. In some prisons, prisoners are even given a paying job. Much of the time, prisoners are free to lie around, relaxing in their cells or watching television. Sometimes prisoners are even provided a formal education. And the best part is that all of this is free.

In other words, with prison the state provides you with security. In the minds of some convicts, that’s a lot better than freedom. When the state casts convicts out of prison, they become responsible for themselves and their well-being. That’s not easy. They need money to buy food, housing, a car, and other things. That means finding and keeping a job. Moreover, outside prison they are faced with an array of choices on a daily basis, which contributes to their anxiety. Better to trade liberty for security.

The reason that this phenomenon shouldn’t surprise us is that this is no different from what the American people have done with their adoption of a welfare-warfare state way of life. They have traded their liberty for security — or at least what they are convinced is security.

The purpose of government in a welfare state is to take care of the citizenry, not only by providing them with government doles, but also by restricting their range of choices, so that they don’t have to experience excess anxiety.

That’s what Social Security and Medicare are all about. The government takes care of people when they reach older age. They don’t have to worry about starving to death or dying in the street from some illness, which is what government officials have convinced people would happen in the absence of these two big socialist programs.

It’s also what public schooling is all about — to provide the education of young people, thereby relieving families of the responsibility of making educational decisions for their children. 

See the rest here

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Liberty, Freedom, and Sovereignty Aren’t On Today’s Ballot | The Libertarian Institute

Posted by M. C. on November 9, 2022

  • I cannot use my property as I see appropriate and in a way that maximizes my utility function without their consent.
  • I cannot start a business without their permission.
  • I cannot hire who I want to hire.
  • I cannot fire who I want to fire.
  • I cannot set wages I deem appropriate in my business even if set by mutual consent.
  • I am compelled to work half of my life to benefit them and others who engage in coercion to confiscate my property for someone else’s use. (In fact, it’d be criminal of me to claim my property as mine, instead of only keeping the percentage I have permission to have.)

by Jeffrey Wernick | Nov 8, 2022

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Today, once again, we have the most important, crucial election in the history of mankind. The fate of the planet, solar system, galaxy, and universe depends upon it. Even God is worried, praying. Maybe it will provoke an extinction level event.

I, personally, will not vote. I will not vote because what I value most is not represented on the ballot; my liberty, my freedom, my personal sovereignty. I do not question the legality of the process. I question its legitimacy. Since I deem it illegitimate and I believe in the non-aggression principle, I choose not to participate in any process I deem illegitimate. I do not question that I will be legally bound, against my will, to whatever the outcome is.

I find it so ironic that we masquerade by voting as if those in power truly care about our consent. They designed a world where we have only privileges to be granted at their discretion. They require that we ask their permission to do just about anything and everything. I thought our Founders signed a Declaration of Independence, not a Declaration of Dependence. I thought the Bill of Rights placed constraints and limitations on government, not a Bill of Privileges granted at their discretion and enforced with violence. I understood government required our consent, not that the governed required the consent from those who govern. Wow, have I gotten things so wrong!

Every major candidate on the ballot today agree on most issues. They all campaign on the fact that;

  • Our children and grandchildren will be burdened by an odious debt accumulated without their consent.
  • I cannot buy what I want to buy if they do not like where it is made.
  • I cannot sell my property (my property!) if they do not like who I am selling it to.
  • I cannot use my property as I see appropriate and in a way that maximizes my utility function without their consent.
  • I cannot start a business without their permission.
  • I cannot hire who I want to hire.
  • I cannot fire who I want to fire.
  • I cannot set wages I deem appropriate in my business even if set by mutual consent.
  • I am compelled to work half of my life to benefit them and others who engage in coercion to confiscate my property for someone else’s use. (In fact, it’d be criminal of me to claim my property as mine, instead of only keeping the percentage I have permission to have.)
  • I cannot move without telling the government my new residence.
  • I cannot perform certain jobs without obtaining an occupational license.
  • I cannot buy and sell with the money I choose because of legal tender laws.
  • I cannot go anywhere without being monitored through warrantless surveillance.
  • The president can invade any country at this discretion because of an unconditional grant of authority called an Authorization for Use of Military Force. (By the way, who consented to pay for these endless wars? I guess the generation not yet born granted their consent through proxy to the president…)

By now, hopefully you understand why I choose not to vote. It is a masquerade.

See the rest here

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Liberty, the Reason for Tolerance

Posted by M. C. on October 13, 2022

Tolerance itself thus needs to appeal to a greater and more fundamental value that answers the question of why be tolerant. Liberty seems to be the most likely and best candidate for being that fundamental value. An imbalance of power, in and of itself, does not imply either tolerance or intolerance. Liberty guarantees it.

Michael Thomas definitely points to an important political virtue when he suggests that tolerance is “the primary political virtue.” In this connection, it is interesting to reflect on how absent this virtue seems to be from the present-day consciousness. Instead of toleration, we have adopted acceptance or ostracism as our model. Toleration supposes that you can disagree with a moral or political stance of some sort, but nevertheless allow it to be practiced. By contrast, one cannot vocalize disagreement with certain practices today without facing immense pressure to conform to acceptance of them. The key to the presence of tolerance is non-acceptance. People must be willing to allow the rejection of some beliefs and practices for there to be tolerance. That is what it means to tolerate something: to allow some belief or practice to continue despite one’s own view that the belief or practice is mistaken, wrong, or immoral. Pushing for acceptance is an entirely different approach by having conformity at its essence.

We thus have two models that, in the abstract at least, do not necessarily violate liberty: one is the model of tolerance and the other the model of pressure towards acceptance. We could point to other views, such as Herbert Marcuse’s, which hold that tolerance is essentially repressive in that it maintains a majoritarian status quo. But the two models are enough to make our point: Thomas’ tolerant society faces self-referential problems. This ideal society must be intolerant of intolerance. This alone forces us to ask ourselves why we even care about tolerance. The answer is one that Thomas himself presupposes and employs in his defenses of tolerance, namely liberty. The value of tolerance is measured against that—making the primary purpose of the state to protect liberty.

Liberty is not, however, merely the lack of external impediments or simply the ability to do whatever one wants to do. 

See the rest here

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TGIF: Social Order through Liberty

Posted by M. C. on July 15, 2022

This reminds me of Spinoza’s belief that to be fully rational an individual must be surrounded by other rational free, individuals with whom he interacts respectfully through reason, persuasion, contract, and trade, not force.

Does the same apply to countries?

by Sheldon Richman


Human beings are self-actualizing social animals. We need to cooperate with others to flourish fully and (but?) we also need the freedom to make of ourselves the persons we wish to be; we need autonomy.

Can we do both liberty and social order? The answer is yes, and that is where rights come into play. I’ll go with Ayn Rand’s definition: “A ‘right’ is a moral principle defining and sanctioning a man’s freedom of action in a social context.” Also, “Rights are conditions of existence required by man’s nature for his proper survival.” Although rights theory is fraught with the potential for abuse — many many counterfeit “rights” have been conjured — it’s difficult to abandon the concept.

Liberty and social order are often seen as in conflict with each other. The conservatives’ fondness for the phrase ordered liberty. It is meant to suggest that liberty too easily becomes license and chaos. So we often hear that rights must be balanced against one another or against other considerations (such as state interest), indicating that all people could not possibly exercise their rights at the same time because that would produce intolerable social conflict. Hence the need for external limits.

But thanks to the work of genuine liberals — that is, libertarians, we have good reason to reject this concern.

One of the great synthesizers of individual and social welfare was one of the most unjustly reviled political thinkers in history: Herbert Spencer. In discussing the human “tendency toward individuation in his 1851 (and first) book, Social Statics, Spencer wrote:

[The person] is self-conscious; that is, he recognizes his own individuality. . . . [W]hat we call the moral law—the law of equal freedom—is the law under which individuation becomes perfect, and that ability to act up to this law is the final endowment of humanity…. The increasing assertion of personal rights is an increasing demand that the external conditions needful to a complete unfolding of the individuality shall be respected. Not only is there now a consciousness of individuality and an intelligence whereby individuality may be preserved, but there is a perception that the sphere of action requisite for due development of the individuality may be claimed, and a correlative desire to claim it. And when the change at present going on is complete—when each possesses an active instinct of freedom, together with an active sympathy—then will all the still existing limitations to individuality, be they governmental restraints or be they the aggressions of men on one another, cease. Then none will be hindered from duly unfolding their natures.

“None will be hindered”? Even with “activity sympathy,” how then can “an active instinct of freedom be reconciled with required social harmony? Spencer addresses the paradox:

Yet must this higher individuation be joined with the greatest mutual dependence. Paradoxical though the assertion looks, the progress is at once toward complete separateness and complete union. But the separateness is of a kind consistent with the most complex combinations for fulfilling social wants; and the union is of a kind that does not hinder entire development of each personality. Civilization is evolving a state of things and a kind of character in which two apparently conflicting requirements are reconciled.

It may sound odd, but Spencer anticipated “at once perfect individuation and perfect mutual dependence.” He wrote:

Just that kind of individuality will be acquired which finds in the most highly organized community the fittest sphere for its manifestation, which finds in each social arrangement a condition answering to some faculty in itself, which could not, in fact, expand at all if otherwise circumstanced. The ultimate man will be one whose private requirements coincide with public ones. He will be that manner of man who, in spontaneously fulfilling his own nature, incidentally performs the functions of a social unit, and yet is only enabled so to fulfill his own nature by all others doing the like.

This reminds me of Spinoza’s belief that to be fully rational an individual must be surrounded by other rational free, individuals with whom he interacts respectfully through reason, persuasion, contract, and trade, not force.

Spencer, of course, is well known for what in Social Statics he called the law of equal freedom: “Every man has freedom to do all he wills, provided he infringes not the equal freedom of any other man.” This sounds good, and it is. But Murray Rothbard, in his discussion of the impossibility and hence senselessness of egalitarianism (in Power and Market: Government and the Economy), made an important observation about Spencer’s law. Rothbard wrote:

This goal [equality of liberty] does not attempt to make every individual’s total condition equal—an absolutely impossible task; instead, it advocates liberty—a condition of absence of coercion over person and property for every man.

Rothbard pointed out that the terms equality before the law and equality of rights “are ambiguous and misleading. The former could be taken to mean equality of slavery as well as liberty and has, in fact, been so narrowed down in recent years as to be.” He also wrote that the term equal is problematic in the study of human affairs because it suggests a unit of measure that does not exist. (For libertarianism conceived at equality of authority, see Roderick Long’s “Liberty: The Other Equality” and “Equality: The Unknown Ideal.”)

Finally, Rothbard wrote:

Spencer’s Law of Equal Freedom is redundant. For if every man has freedom to do all that he wills, it follows from this very premise that no man’s freedom has been infringed or invaded. The whole second clause of the law after “wills” is redundant and unnecessary. Since the formulation of Spencer’s Law, opponents of Spencer have used the qualifying clause to drive holes into the libertarian philosophy. Yet all this time they were hitting at an encumbrance, not at the essence of the law. The concept of “equality” has no rightful place in the “Law of Equal Freedom,” being replaceable by the logical quantifier “every.” The “Law of Equal Freedom” could well be renamed The Law of Total Freedom.

Rothbard credits the point to Clara Dixon Davidson, who in 1892 wrote in Benjamin Tucker’s magazine, Liberty:

The law of equal freedom, “Every one is free to do whatsoever he wills,” appears to me to be the primary condition to happiness. If I fail to add the remainder of Herbert Spencer’s celebrated law of equal freedom, I shall only risk being misinterpreted by persons who cannot understand that the opening affirmation includes what follows, since, if any one did infringe upon the freedom of another, all would not be equally free. [Emphsis added.]

This leads to the conclusion that all people may be free to exercise their rights simultaneously without jeopardy to life-serving social order. No need for balancing rights exists. If all “ordered liberty” means is liberty that is consistent with social order, then we can rest easy so long as people think soundly about liberty. How surprising is this? After all, the very notion of rights stems from each individual’s need to act in the world without conflicting with others. (This insight about rights theory has been called “compossibility” by the Georgist libertarian Hillel Steiner. For an opposing view to the Davidson-Rothbard argument, see this from Matt Zwolinski.)

This does not mean the boundaries between people’s zones of freedom are always immediately clear — far from it. Disagreements (both good faith and malicious) are inevitable. That’s why, in addition to liberal customs, free societies will have contracts, formal associations, policing agencies, insurance, mediators, arbiters, and judges. Governance does not require government.

It seems that Benjamin Tucker’s magazine motto (borrowed from Pierre-Joseph Proudhon) had it right: “Liberty: Not the Daughter but the Mother of Order.”

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A Victory for Life and Liberty

Posted by M. C. on June 28, 2022

written by ron paul

Whatever your views on the subject, Constitutionaly RP is correct regarding states responsibility.

The Supreme Court undid one of its worst mistakes last week when it overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision declaring a constitutional right to abortion. The Constitution reserves to the states the authority to write and enforce laws regarding murder. Since the question of whether or not to legalize abortion revolves around whether abortion is murder, it is not a federal issue. Roe was thus an illegitimate usurpation of state authority.

The Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision last week will not stop the federal government from using the tax dollars of those who believe abortion is murder to fund abortion and family planning both in the United States and abroad. Those opposed to abortion, and in favor of constitutional government, must continue their efforts to end all federal funding of abortion.

Some state governments, such as in Texas and Mississippi, have adopted laws against abortion that are “triggered” after Roe is overturned. Now, additional pro-life state legislators and activists are no doubt planning to push other states with pro-life majorities to pass legislation outlawing abortion.

States where the majority favor legal abortion are no doubt planning to pass pro-abortion legislation. Some of these states will pass laws providing enhanced financial support for lower-income women to receive abortions. Pro-abortion activists are also planning to provide help to women from states where abortion is outlawed to travel to a state where they can legally “terminate” their pregnancies.

Pro-lifers should not respond to pro-abortion state laws by trying to pass an unconstitutional law making abortion a federal crime. Instead, they should work to change attitudes and build a culture of life. One way to do this is by supporting crisis pregnancy centers. These centers help pregnant women in difficult situations see that there are alternatives to abortion. Sadly, the crisis pregnancy centers are among the “woke” mob’s targets for cancellation. If the left were truly “pro-choice” they would not try to shut down privately run pro-life pregnancy centers.

Many libertarians believe that outlawing abortions violates a woman’s right to bodily autonomy. However, the nonaggression principle, which is the philosophic foundation of libertarianism, prohibits committing acts of aggression. Murder is certainly an act of aggression. Therefore, even though all humans have a right to bodily anatomy, this does not justify abortion.

No one ever asked an expectant mother, “how’s the fetus?” Instead, people ask about the baby. This implicitly acknowledges the unborn child’s humanity and thus the child’s right to live. The denial of this right has warped our constitutional system. More importantly it has contributed to the devaluing of human life that is the root of much of America’s moral crisis. A society that devalues life will not respect liberty. Therefore, all who value liberty must protect the right to life. This does not just include ending abortion. It also includes rejecting the militaristic foreign policy that kills innocents in the name of “freedom and democracy.”

Just as pro-life conservatives should be antiwar, progressives should reject the violence government commits against its own citizens via taxation, income redistribution, and the fiat money system that robs average Americans to benefit politicians and elites. Rejecting the use of force, including government force, will lead to a society that values and protects our lives, liberty, and property.

Copyright © 2022 by RonPaul Institute. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.
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Weekly Update — Don’t Trade Real Liberty for Phony Security

Posted by M. C. on June 1, 2022

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TGIF: Mask Mandate – Liberty Can Hang on One Word

Posted by M. C. on May 6, 2022

by Sheldon Richman

Rather, my point is that freedom can hang by a very thin thread. Judge Mizelle made a good case that in this statutory context, mask-wearing is not a method of sanitation. But what about the next judge who hears a CDC or other power-grabbing case?

As I mentioned recently, whether the courts protect or violate liberty in any given case is something of a coin toss. The matter could hinge on a single word. We just had a good example of that fact.

On April 18 U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle, a Trump appointee in Tampa, Fla., ruled that the Centers for Disease Control exceeded its statutory authority when it mandated that most people wear masks when using public transportation in order to stem the spread of COVID-19. (Health Freedom Defense Fund et al. v. Biden.)

The judge’s ruling hinged on a single word in §264(a) of the Public Health Services Act of 1944, on which the CDC claimed its authority: sanitation.

§264(a) states:

The Surgeon General [or CDC apparently], with the approval of the [HHS] Secretary, is authorized to make and enforce such regulations as in his judgment are necessary to prevent the introduction, transmission, or spread of communicable diseases from foreign countries into the States or possessions, or from one State or possession into any other State or possession. For purposes of carrying out and enforcing such regulations, the Surgeon General [or CDC] may provide for such inspection, fumigation, disinfection, sanitation, pest extermination, destruction of animals or articles found to be so infected or contaminated as to be sources of dangerous infection to human beings, and other measures, as in his judgment may be necessary.

For Judge Mizelle the question came down to exactly what sanitation means and whether mask-wearing is a method of sanitation. The answer depends, she said, on the sense, that is, the context, in which the statute uses that word.

She wrote: “A requirement that travelers wear a mask is not inspection, fumigation, disinfection, sanitation, or pest extermination, and the government does not contend otherwise.” But, she added, the CDC does contend that the mask mandate is “akin to sanitation.”

The judge rejected that contention. The statute does not define sanitation, so she relied on dictionaries for guidance, finding that the word refers to both cleaning something and keeping it clean:

The context of §264(a) indicates that “sanitation” and “other measures” refer to measures that clean something, not ones that keep something clean. Wearing a mask cleans nothing. At most, it traps virus droplets. But it neither “sanitizes” the person wearing the mask nor “sanitizes” the conveyance. Because the CDC required mask wearing as a measure to keep something clean — explaining that it limits the spread of COVID-19 through prevention, but never contending that it actively destroys or removes it — the Mask Mandate falls outside of §264(a).

Mizelle had much more to say on why the second sense of the word doesn’t apply, and she rejected other CDC claims.

My point is not to take issue with the result. I am delighted the CDC — one of those “expert” regulatory agencies that have effectively become unelected legislatures unto themselves — was reined in. Throughout the pandemic the CDC has tried to seize one unprecedented power after another. Fortunately it has not gone unchecked. When it imposed a moratorium on apartment evictions and forbade the cruise industry from operating, the courts said no. Now a court has said no to the mask mandate.

Rather, my point is that freedom can hang by a very thin thread. Judge Mizelle made a good case that in this statutory context, mask-wearing is not a method of sanitation. But what about the next judge who hears a CDC or other power-grabbing case? (As we’ve seen repeatedly, the party of the nominating president gives no assurance.) As former President Clinton aide Elaine Kamarck shows, it wouldn’t have been a stretch for a judge to have upheld the mandate, and most Americans wouldn’t have thought the reasoning off the wall. The difference between Mizelle and Kamarck looks like hair-splitting. But liberty is too precious to be left to hair-splitting.

As I wrote in 2009, after soon-to-be Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor assured the Senate Judiciary Committee that a “judge applies the law [and not her feelings] to the facts” of the case:

Nothing in human affairs is that simple. Judgment and interpretation are required every step of the way. This is why, contrary to popular fable, the line between the rule of law and the rule of men and women is so fine as to be nonexistent. (See John Hasnas’s important papers “The Myth of the Rule of Law” and the “The Depoliticization of Law” [pdf]). Laws, which are intended to be applied to an unlimited number of unforeseeable future circumstances, do not speak for themselves. Human beings must interpret them. This does not mean language is inherently impenetrable. (I could hardly write if I believed that.) However, there is a broad middle ground between impenetrability and perfect clarity. As libertarian legal scholar Randy Barnett noted,  “While I do not share [the] view of law as radically indeterminate, I sure think it is a whole lot more underdeterminate than Judge Sotomayor made it out to be in her testimony today.”

Where does that leave us then? It leaves us with the question asked by the classical liberal legal philosopher Bruno Leoni, author of Freedom and the Law (1961): “It is a question of deciding whether individual freedom is compatible in principle with the present system centered on and almost completely identified with legislation.” What’s the alternative to legislature-based law? Leoni wrote: “Both the Romans and the English shared the idea that the law is something to be discovered more than to be enacted and that nobody is so powerful in his society as to be in a position to identify his own will with the will of the land.”

It was law that judges discerned when resolving specific disputes brought before them by specific individuals; it was law based on custom and the reasonable expectations it gave rise to. The system stood in contrast to legislature-made rules that are later interpreted by judges. It wasn’t a perfect system, but the comparison is not to Utopia but to what legislatures and judges routinely do. Leoni likened judge-discovered law to the spontaneous order of the free market and legislature-made rules to central economic planning:

No solemn titles, no pompous ceremonies, no enthusiasm on the part of applauding masses can conceal the crude fact that both the legislators and the directors of a centralized economy are only particular individuals like you and me, ignorant of 99 percent of what is going on around them as far as the real transactions, agreements, attitudes, feelings, and convictions of people are concerned.

Under the best of circumstances, conventional political systems are dodgy places to seek the protection of liberty, even in matters of public health, where property rights, contract, and voluntary community should reign supreme. (On the efficacy of masks, see this.) If the mask-mandate case isn’t convincing enough, have a look at the leaked draft of Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion in the Supreme Court’s latest abortion case.

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TGIF: What Really Protects Liberty?

Posted by M. C. on May 2, 2022

by Sheldon Richman

The upshot is that if people’s values are not consistently pro-liberty, it won’t matter in the long run much what the Constitution “says,” and if they are pro-liberty, then it won’t matter whether there is a written constitution — or a state for that matter.

But whether the Constitution really be one thing, or another, this much is certain—that it has either authorized such a government as we have had, or has been powerless to prevent it. In either case, it is unfit to exist” – Lysander Spooner

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated, as if we needed another demonstration, that little stands between the government and our liberty. Champions of individual freedom have been properly disturbed by how much power governments at all levels have seized since the pandemic hit in 2020.

To make matters worse, officeholders and public-health officials object when the judicial branch occasionally overturns their power grabs because judges are said to be unqualified to rule on “medical” matters. So, if judges furnish constitutional and other legal grounds against power grabs, we’re supposed to ignore them because they in fact are issuing medical opinions for which they are not qualified. That’s pretty inventive reasoning, but unfortunately it is in the service of tyranny and serfdom.

Some judges have made good, that is, power-limiting, decisions during the pandemic, though they might well have gone the other way. (See John Hasnas’s “The Myth of the Rule of Law.”) It’s only a slight exaggeration to say the judicial process is a coin toss.

When judges get it right, the devout constitutionalists among us cheer: “The system works!” But what about all the times the rulings went the other way? Where does that leave the constitutionalists? They will say that the problem isn’t with the Constitution; it’s with the judges. But considering that the Constitution doesn’t interpret itself, who were they expecting to interpret it? Robots that have been correctly programmed? Who would do the programming? Even people within the competing schools of constitutional interpretation don’t agree on everything.

Since it’s people all the way down and the process is internal, not external to society, don’t the constitutionalists have a wee problem?

James Madison called the Bill of Rights, which he wrote, a “parchment barrier.” But he couldn’t have really meant that because parchment is a poor material for making the heavy-duty, barrier liberty requires due to the predatory nature of politicians. The only real barriers in this regard are the people themselves — people, that is, who refuse to give, carry out, or obey unjust orders. Paraxodically, orders require consent, and that can be withheld. (Think of the scene in Monty Python’s Life of Brian in which Brian tells a prison guard that he doesn’t have to follow orders and the guard replies, “I like orders.”)

Strictly speaking, constitutions and statutes cannot compel unjust conduct or compliance. They are merely words. When governors ordered “non-essential” businesses and schools to shut down and people to stay home in 2020, those politicians didn’t point guns at anyone. People obeyed, but I suspect that only a few did so lest they be punished. If someone had disobeyed, armed agents of the state might have been dispatched, but why did they obey orders? No gun was held to their heads. They might have been fired and others put in their place places, but no one would have been subjected to force.

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Watch “Hayek’s Contribution to Liberty” on YouTube

Posted by M. C. on March 6, 2022

What were Friedrich Hayek’s major contributions to the principles of the free market and the free society? Join FFF president Jacob G. Hornberger and Citadel professor Richard M. Ebeling as they address that question in this week’s episode of The Libertarian Angle.

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Philosophical Musings of this Writer in this Time of Traumatic Sophistry –

Posted by M. C. on January 27, 2022

With collectivism, the individual necessarily becomes irrelevant, and can only feel whole when a part of the herd. Considering the tyrannical agendas of the State, this collective phenomenon is much desired, as the political becomes reality; therefore, steering all policy without any regard or consideration for the individual. This of course leads to chaos and total moral decay.

By: Gary D. Barnett

“A philosopher operates with deductions. A sophist operates with paradoxes. A “public intellectual” operates with buzzwords.”

Jakub Bozydar Wisniewski, Mises Institute

~ Man is the ultimate threat to man, and the true danger to the future. Nature guarantees this concept, and disassociation through collective destruction of the individual allows for an end to individual purpose. The answer to altering this reality then, seems uncomplicated, as in order for humanity to live and prosper, to love and understand beauty, to strive for a peaceful and fulfilling existence, and to be free, depends on each to know himself, and to demand his life and unique and singular presence as his own.

~ Embrace inner thought, embrace truth, and then embrace the fact that no external rules can change the psyche of the individual man.

~ Suicide is thought to be a way to escape a life that has little meaning. Given that man can only perceive as certain and prove that life leads to death, he has a choice to make. That choice is to fully accept life and all it brings, or commit physical or philosophic suicide. If all life is predicated on an unknown afterlife, it becomes an untenable effort to just survive instead of living fully, in hopes of finding some future finality of nirvana. With acceptance of self, and an effort to find the true spirit inside, life becomes much more than just constant suffering and disappointment, and turns into a joyous experience that conceivably could last forever.

~ The larger the crowd, the less important the individual, which can only lead to the extinction of love and beauty, and the infinite nature of the individual intellect. Uniformity as normal brings a feeling of insignificance for the individual, stifles thought, and brings darkness instead of light. An awakening can only truly occur and exist when balance between the conscious and subconscious is apparent, and an escape from perception takes place, leaving reality more exposed, and the unknown more sought.

~ With collectivism, the individual necessarily becomes irrelevant, and can only feel whole when a part of the herd. Considering the tyrannical agendas of the State, this collective phenomenon is much desired, as the political becomes reality; therefore, steering all policy without any regard or consideration for the individual. This of course leads to chaos and total moral decay.

~ Once a societal mass is formed, all valid intellectual function disappears in favor of a total loss of consciousness, leading to despair, lack of self-awareness, and confidence, which in turn leads to domination by default. Because of this dynamic, all who seek the group become the group, and in the process are completely susceptible to oppression. The building of this tower of sameness breeds weakness and uncertainty, and a desire to seek the safety of a monopolized control which could be referred to as the comfort of mediocrity.

~ Sometimes the obvious is so apparent as to become nearly invisible. A great false threat is created and then used to confuse and frighten the masses, causing the herd to flee, just as is the case of all flight animals in the wild. But the human animal has the ability, whether exercised or not, to think and reason, so why is this gift tossed aside during times of strife; times when it is most needed? Maybe it is due to a lack of understanding of self, and a dependence on others, especially on those dishonestly claiming to be ‘leaders.’ When each takes his own way instead of relying on false prophets, the tables are turned in favor of a more enlightened and valuable outcome, and a return to right.

~ “Man’s inhumanity to man” has caused mass pain, suffering, and death, and for what reason no one knows. It is at once incomprehensible and at the same time expected, and this should not be so. Contradiction at this level is beyond confusing, but then man has always been the epitome of imperfection; a conundrum to be sure considering what are said to be the inherent and basic beliefs held by much of the human species. A species supposedly seeking harmony while consumed by conflict cannot survive, and as Robert Burns so skillfully described:

“Many and sharp the num’rous ills
Inwoven with our frame!
More pointed still we make ourselves
Regret, remorse, and shame!
And Man, whose heav’n-erected face
The smiles of love adorn, –
Man’s inhumanity to man
Makes countless thousands mourn!”

~ What is the answer; I do not know? Why is man so terribly bent on his own destruction; I do not know? Why does man’s inhumanity to man forever subsist; I do not know? I do know that for inner peace and tranquility to exist, and therefore for humanity to peacefully exist together, that one must act alone, meaning all should act alone as individuals in favor of harmony, love, and non-aggression. This means that the ‘State’ should end, and the individual should reign.

“TO the States or any one of them, or any city of the States, Resist

much, obey little,

Once unquestioning obedience, once fully enslaved,

Once fully enslaved, no nation, state, city of this earth, ever after-ward

resumes its liberty.“

Walt Whitman — “Leaves of Grass”

Be seeing you

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