Can we give up?

By Nathan Barton

It seems that daily, we get a fresh bout of news about something evil done to people – often by government and those who support more and more government.  Beating and killing and imprisoning people and stealing more and more taxes, creating more and more regulations, and enforcing everything with a heavy and often irrational hand.

And every day, we read about the next major catastrophe – manmade or otherwise – that is going to strike us down.  In addition to the traditional flood, fire, famine and earthquake, we have rogue asteroids and chemtrails and EMP and cellular brain-fry and many more threats.

Every day we read about how more and more people are trading freedom for security, being dumbed down still more and more by government schools and uncaring and unqualified parents, people who are more and more cruel and callous.

It isn’t just the mainstream media that pushes this diet of doom and gloom.  The alt-media and advertising promotes it more and more.

Optimism is a scarce commodity these days.  I do my own share of the doom and gloom aspects of news and commentary.

Maybe, once in a while, we need to stop looking down at our feet, and start looking up.  Look at things optimistically, and stop looking back to the past as the “good old days” in so many ways.  (But also, stop looking at the past and current conditions as being irredeemably evil and miserable.

Instead of looking at the liberty that we had and may have lost, lets try looking at what we have, what we’ve gained, and what we can do to have more, both now and in the future.  And especially that freedom, that liberty, that is based on our own actions and not tied to what someone does (or can do) to us.

Harry Browne once wrote a book, “How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World.”  I read that years ago, and frankly don’t remember much of it.  But it was, overall as I recall, a pretty upbeat book, that said that the degree of freedom which we can enjoy is based mainly on what WE think and do.  We tend to blame others when things don’t go right, don’t turn out the way we want them to.  In doing so we fall into the same trap that we see with people who do not accept responsibility for their own actions: the opposite of self-governing and liberty.

So, what do we do?  Let’s look at just one thing, for now.

We do not take counsel of our fears. A number of people have said that over the years.  one of the most famous of those is Thomas J (Stonewall) Jackson.  Yes, I know he is hated, feared and reviled today.  Too bad.  Perhaps you would prefer this version: “To not take counsel from our fears simply means that we do not permit fear and uncertainty to determine our course in life, to affect negatively our attitudes and behavior, to influence improperly our important decisions, or to divert or distract us from all in this world that is virtuous, lovely, or of good report.”  (That comes from David Bednar at BYU – I know nothing about him but this statement.)

Take the idea from Davy Crockett: “Be always sure you are right, and then go ahead.”  It might not turn out good, but if we let dwelling on everything that could go wrong keep us from doing anything, what have we gained?

Maybe we are entering into a new era of totalitarian society in which we will envy the Germans of the Third Reich or dead of the Kymer Rouge.  But it won’t last, and it really is pretty unlikely. If we don’t give up – even relatively few of us – living in and for liberty.

More, later.

Mama’s Note: Excellent advice, Nathan. If we allow our dread of things that may, or may not happen control us, we lose everything. And that includes all of the insane “politically correct” nonsense, of course. There is no pleasing those who would control us via our emotions, even if that were a good thing. All anyone owes them is non-aggression.

About TPOL Nathan

Follower of Christ Jesus (a christian), Pahasapan (resident of the Black Hills), Westerner, Lover of Liberty, Free-Market Anarchist, Engineer, Army Officer, Husband, Father, Historian, Writer, Evangelist. Successor to Lady Susan (Mama Liberty) at TPOL.
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