On the Other Hand...

Freedom: What's In It for Us?

by Jim Davies

This week I thought to offer a too-brief summary of what this column is all about. In a sense every Edition addresses one aspect of freedom or another, so it's impossible in one of them to do more than summarize; but perhaps it will be useful to see in one place at least the highlights. What, then, would you and I gain, if we were free of the humongous parasite called "government"?

And no, that's NOT an "impossible dream"! This is America! We can have anything we want! Whatever we vote for, we get! If you want freedom, vote for it!

1. What's ours, stays ours . Money is the key to such a vast array of other freedoms, that I put it right up front. In a free society, we'd be free of legalized theft; we would be free to keep whatever we honestly acquire. So, taxation would vanish and (since today government steals about 45% of all we earn) that means we'd be nearly twice as well off as today. Overnight!

2. Our life, our style . I happen not to be a Frank Sinatra fan, but one of his biggest hits was about doing things "my way". That lyric is a marvellous expression of freedom of choice! - and in a free society, nobody would be able to stop anyone living his or her own life in any manner or style he or she wanted, providing only that such conduct allowed everyone else to do the same.

The implications are large, and remind us that freedom and responsibility go hand in hand. When all laws against drug use are repealed, for example, so will all laws compelling taxpayers to fund the medical rescue of addicts; so to ingest a narcotic will mean to take one's life entirely into one's own hands.

Similarly, anyone would be entirely free to sleep with someone of the same sex; but would also bear any and all the consequent ridicule and prejudice he or she may meet - for no laws would prevent an employer, for example, refusing to offer someone a job for any reason he pleases. There won't be much of that, I predict, for he will have to pay for his prejudice in the form of higher wages elsewhere; so its cost will fall where it should. But, it will happen.

3. Our work, our control . Ask any small-business owner about government regulations and controls, and you'll have to sit still for a long answer. In addition to his wickedly destructive taxes (is there any other kind?) Big Brother loves to poke around in every corner of every enterprise so as to make it harder to make a profit. That factor alone is a terrible impediment to prosperity. I don't recommend it, but we'd all be a heap better off if taxes continued to be collected, but got poured down a sewer instead of being paid to government snoops and bureau-rats. They do us damage using our own money!

Total freedom to do honest business as we wish would have a profound effect on jobs too. Suppose for example someone was willing to take a job for $1.50/hr (a teen, perhaps, looking for the first rung on the ladder to success.) He'd be perfectly free to make that contract. So as employer we'd get good-value labor to make the business hum along better, AND as the employee we'd never, ever be without a job. So one huge benefit is: Unemployment would vanish.

4. Our security, our defense . Even when government is abolished in this country (a step perfectly well contemplated, by the way, in the Declaration of Independence: go read it!) such parasites may still remain overseas, for We the People cannot control that. So, it's possible that one day one of them may pose us a threat. What then, after we've disbanded the government's military?

Answer: self-help, of course. The sort that won the struggle against the lawfully-established government of these parts in 1781, which fielded the then- strongest military in the world. We own the life: we, individually, will take what steps we see fit to defend it, with whatever weapons seem to us proper.

The notion that we could ever be conscripted to go fight in the government's foreign wars, by way of a kind of socialized "defense" (actually offense) will be tossed in the trash when this country becomes free.

So, freedom offers, among so much else, freedom from war, or the vast majority of possible wars. Had America chosen freedom from government at its foundation, the Revolutionary War (a defensive one, for sure) would have been the last. We'd have enjoyed over 200 years of peace as well as freedom. They go together.

5. Our kids, our schooling . The most precious single benefit of all, that freedom would bring, would be the right without hassle to bring up our own children in whatever manner each of us sees fit. That's the way it was in all of human history prior to 1800 (in America, about 1840) and that's the way it should always be. For the Collective to take our own children away for several hours every day and indoctrinate them, so that (for example) they find remarks like these here strange or unfamiliar, is utterly monstrous.

© Copyright Jim Davies 1999

Jim Davies lives in New Hampshire,
and enjoys contemplating which way is up.

The above is Edition # 252

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