By Nathan Barton
As we lovers of liberty try to identify whether or not our society is gaining or losing liberty and freedom, we should consider what the characteristics of a society which enjoys real liberty are. Here is a list of suggested traits.
1. Individual people will be free and motivated to grow up, grow deep, and soar to unimagined heights without restraints and supported by love, liberty, freedom, and peace.
2. Individual people will be free to fail, and free to learn and grow as a result. Freedom to succeed means freedom to fail.
3. Individual people and voluntary groups of people will be free to go into business, using their God-given skills to pursue their God-given passions without having to be licensed involuntarily (by the State) to do so.
4. Individual people, families, and voluntary groups of people (such as local churches) will be free to, and responsible in the eyes of society, for feeding, clothing, housing, and educating all who are in true need of food, clothing, education, and housing for themselves.
5. Individual people and groups will be free to conduct private conversations (one-on-one or in groups) with privacy – that is, without monitoring by the State.
6. Individual people will be free to express their opinions, their religious convictions, and their understanding of the facts publicly without seeking permission or needing protection from the State.
7. Individual people will be free to decide what they want to purchase and to sell, regardless of risk to themselves: buying shall neither be mandated nor prohibited for any product or service.
8. Individual people will be free to decide daily actions for themselves, in voluntary cooperation with bosses, customers, suppliers, and family; including such things as building or installing or replacing rooms, roof, fences, and such mundane things as light bulbs, toilets and showerheads.
9. Individual people (and families and other voluntary groups) will be able to truly own homes, farms, and businesses without having to pay the State “rent” (property taxes) for the “privilege” of doing so.
10. Individual people will be free to give what they wish to other people or groups without fear that the State might prohibit such a gift, or tax either the giver or receiver, or prevent such a gift over taxes or fees or permits or licenses.
11. Individual people will not be owned physically by the State or others, so that they cannot be drafted to serve either in war or in peace, in combat or in “public service.”
12. Individual people and voluntary groups will be free to conduct their business, including economic activities (such as running a business) without having to report it to the State.
13. Individual people and their families and other voluntary groups will be accountable and responsible for their actions, and the State will not be able to indemnify them or protect them or grant them a “privilege” to avoid that responsibility.
Mama’s Note: And so, of course, at that point there would be zero excuse for any “state” to exist. I could very happily live with that.