Proclaiming Liberty Throughout the Land
by Chris Rossini: Fill
Your Christmas Stockings With Stacks of Benjamins! Join the FEMA
morning's edition of "Morning Coffee with Murray Rothbard" covered
the importance of educating the general public. High theory and
scholarship are not be enough for liberty to carry the day. The
importance of the free market needs to be understood by everyone.
of this post is to further elaborate on this very important topic.
with early Americans, like Thomas Jefferson, who knew that the spirit
of liberty that took root in America would certainly be challenged
(as it has been since day one):
destined to be a barrier against the return of ignorance and barbarism.”
is in the religion of ignorance that tyranny begins.”
government has had a tight grip on the education process in America;
and the ignorance of liberty is built-in to the curriculum. Fortunately,
the Internet and home schooling have arrived, and will ultimately
win the day.
Liberty Bell's inscription states what needs to be done to hold
back the downward pull of tyranny:
liberty throughout the land unto all the inhabitants thereof.”
Now let's move
forward to our times.
the small minority of enlightened citizens who are able to conceive
sound principles of political management do not succeed in winning
the support of their fellow citizens and converting them to the
endorsement of policies that bring and preserve prosperity, the
cause of mankind and civilization is hopeless. There is no other
means to safeguard a propitious development of human affairs than
to make the masses of inferior people adopt the ideas of the elite.
This has to be achieved by convincing them. It cannot be accomplished
by a despotic regime that instead of enlightening the masses beats
them into submission. In the long run the ideas of the majority,
however detrimental they may be, will carry on. The future of mankind
depends on the ability of the elite to influence public opinion
in the right direction.”
that happens in the social world in our time is the result of ideas.
Good things and bad things...We must substitute better ideas for
wrong ideas…Ideas and only ideas can light the darkness. These
ideas must be brought to the public in such a way that they persuade
people…Our civilization will and must survive. And it will
survive through better ideas than those which now govern most of
the world today, and these better ideas will be developed by the
rising generation…I myself have full confidence in the future
of freedom, both political and economic.”
But what if the
common man doesn't latch on to sound ideas? Do we blame him alone?
We do not,
fault is not theirs alone. It is no less the fault of the pioneers
of the good causes in not having succeeded in bringing forward their
thoughts in a more convincing form."
In other words,
if you and I are passionate about liberty winning the day, but we
are not doing our part to spread the ideas, a portion of the blame
falls on us. Mises concluded;
favorable evolution of human affairs depends ultimately on the ability
of the human race to beget not only authors but also heralds and
disseminators of beneficial ideas."
If we understand
the importance of spreading ideas of liberty and free markets, what
is the best method to do this work?
Well, we should
first make sure that we don't put the cart before the horse. We
must first, with great intensity, advance our own understanding.
put it this way:
a person advances his own understanding of the true and the false,
the understanding thus acquired will be sought by others. Reason
recommends that a person get the horse before the cart; that first
one must learn; that influencing others will take care of itself.”
For a fantastic
read (or listen) on
this subject, do not miss Isaiah's Job, by Albert Jay Nock.
Once we have
a firm grasp, and we're confident enough to spread the ideas of
liberty and sound economics, should we seek to make a Glenn Beckian
public spectacle? If we don't have an attention grabbing charade,
like a million man march on Washington, are we doomed?
meet on enemy territory, where you have to get a permit to assemble
or even to speak? [Where] peaceful, unarmed people were viciously
harassed, violently arrested, and jailed in chains for dissing the
little god in the white house. [Demonstrators are] surrounded at
all times by heavily armed, paramilitary cops, who [keep] their
weapons pointed in the direction of the crowd.
much better to meet, teach, learn, organize, and plan on private
property? If you want a mass demo, rent a convention center or a
farmer’s field or other private land. You say this won’t
get you press coverage? The state media will always pretend you
do not exist...We can and must ignore and circumvent them. A good
first step: stay out of DC.”
Dr. Albert Schweitzer
also commented on educating others in private:
new public opinion must be created privately and unobtrusively.
The existing one is maintained by the press, by propaganda, by organization,
and by financial and other influences which are at its disposal.
The unnatural way of spreading ideas must be opposed by the natural
one, which goes from man to man and relies solely on the truth of
the thoughts and the hearer’s receptiveness for new truth…”
is a tool of the State.
as a cog in the wheel, taking orders, and operating on what Hayek
called The Pretense of Knowledge:
It is no surprise
that history is littered with the failure of one state after another.
The believers in power keep trying to devise a way to make it work...with
Constitutions, checks & balances, democracy, etc...but the failure
rate remains at a firm 100%.
On the other
hand, decentralization is the tool of Liberty.
For liberty to emerge, we know not to look for an idol to worship,
who will pass down the instructions. We are not cogs in a wheel,
but creative individuals, using our own skills and talents
to spread ideas in our own ways:
better than Lew Rockwell, to drive home this point, and the conclusion
of this article:
is a reason we are born when we are. Everyone in this room dropped
into this long trajectory we call time for a precise purpose. You
were all given talents, unique talents. You have all been called
to use those talents for something. For what? For doing right, promoting
good, keeping evil at bay, advancing the well-being of society.
To the extent that we enjoy prosperity and peace today it is because
those who came before us did what they were supposed to do on our
is our turn, and we must bear the burden. We must do what is right,
while we still have time. There is not a moment of our lives to
waste. We must contribute whatever we can and however we can.
Freedom is a rarity in the history of the world, and it comes
about only when it has champions. Let us be those champions today,
for as long as we are granted breath on earth."
with permission from Economic
Economic Policy Journal