Now, the anarchists and uber-libertarians subscribe to the 2nd definition, to be free to do as they please, limited only by their interactions with those around them. I hate to say it, but this has been done repeatedly throughout history. Nomads, tribes, clans, gangs, etc. are all examples of this form of liberty or freedom. They do their own thing and it inevitably results in conflicts between groups, clan/tribal wars, Darwinian “survival of the fittest” and Lord of the Flies savagery. It is the Utopian vision of selfishness and bears a strong resemblance to the Utopian vision of the socialist/communist/Marxist nanny state of dependence upon a centralized power. A bunch of mini kingdoms or one Big Kingdom, either way the “visionaries” see themselves at the top. It is a vision, or more aptly a pipe dream, with no foundation in basic human nature. They are the yin and yang of Utopian NaivetÃ©.
So, how would I define Liberty? Liberty is that delicate balance between individual sovereignty and mutual respect. Liberty cannot exist where selfishness reigns, nor can it exist in a society of dependence. To be truly free, we must be unified in liberty. That unification is found in governance, a collectively agreed upon set of basic rules, much like our United States Constitution. As governments go, the Constitutional Republic of the United States is the most liberty-minded construct ever created, yet has enough governance to maintain a civilized society.
“A wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another yet leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and which shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned: this is the sum of good Government necessary to complete the circle of our felicities”. Thomas Jefferson’s 1st Inaugural Address, 1801
“Society in every state is a blessing, but Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one: for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries BY A GOVERNMENT, which we might expect in a country WITHOUT GOVERNMENT, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer. Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence; the palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise. For were the impulses of conscience clear, uniform and irresistibly obeyed, man would need no other lawgiver; but that not being the case, he finds it necessary to surrender up a part of his property to furnish means for the protection of the rest; and this he is induced to do by the same prudence which in every other case advises him, out of two evils to choose the least. Wherefore, security being the true design and end of government, it unanswerably follows that whatever form thereof appears most likely to ensure it to us, with the least expense and greatest benefit, is preferable to all others. Thomas Paine – Common Sense, 1776
This nation was founded upon Liberty, sacrificing only enough necessary to promote civilization above savagery. There is a big difference between a Constitutional Government and the bureaucratic oligarchy that our system of government has become. The foundation is still solid, but the behemoth that has been built upon that foundation is in need of serious downsizing. Now is not the time to “throw out the baby with the bathwater”, but it is time to roll up our sleeves as a nation and do an EXTREME governmental makeover. KEEP the foundation, but cut out the rot and corruption. Rome was not built in a day and this titanic government bureaucracy cannot be dismantled overnight. No fantasy of burning it to the ground will cure what ails us. We have become victims of our own sloth and apathy and only the revival of We The People as a whole, eternally vigilant and self-regulating, can restore the true liberty that is our birthright.
Jon Britton aka DoubleTap is Chief Operating Officer of CDH, Inc., a regular contributing author and regularly involved in most aspects of their social media. “Writing was never a goal or even vaguely contemplated as a career choice, it just happened, an accidental discovery of a talent and a passion.” A passion that has taken him in many directions from explorations of the zombie subculture and zombie stories to political advocacy. Joining the U.S. Air Force right out of high school, Jon had the opportunity to experience many different parts of the world and different cultures. His post military career path, both white collar and blue collar, allowed him to work alongside both CEOs and average Joes. As a founding member Cold Dead Hands his study of human nature and writing ability found a purpose. His zombie roots provided a variety of issues from prepping to human behavior under crisis to firearms that he applies to his advocacy for gun rights. A ravenous appetite for the study of history combined with his current events political junkie addiction led to him writing an e-book Gun Sense: Past, Present and Future.