What would you do to be free?

If the goal is to avoid indignities great and petty, how does one become more free? Not minding them is one way, but learning to ignore evil doesn’t free us or our beloved from its pysical manifestations. Spiritual freedom does not makes on breathe easier in Zyklon-B atmosphere.

Money can insulate in some cases: TSA doesn’t screen private plane passengers yet, but that may be a matter of time. Private land affords a degree of insulation from official busy-bodies. So earn more and delegate dealing with the IRS to hired accountants? Not practical for most people.

A revolution would do it, with all the past sources of indignities becoming lead sponges. New sources of interference will arise, most likely more outrageous than the old. Changing the world significantly is a task of a lifetime, foregoing other interests and dreams.

And all that explains why political power has been so attractive to many. A Medieval Bishop or king may have gone decades without encountering anyone to whom he was in pawn. Controlling the lives or others could have been a side effect, not the intent of seeking power. The intent — at least from the freedom-seeking perspective — was to have no one above in the pecking order, to be the alpha not for the dominion over others, but to avoid being subjugated.

The last option is to go off the grid, to areas which no one claims effectively. Become a country of one family and be too obscure for the great powers to notice, too well-armed for the others to try. The USSR used to prohibit escape. Cuba and North Korea still do. The US makes expatriation more difficult with every year, but it is still a viable option. Unfortunately, expatriation requires to view this country as worthless and few are prepared to get more freedom by giving up the dream.

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8 Responses to What would you do to be free?

  1. Flint says:

    Or you could move to NH, where there are enough like-minded folks that you can band together with and create meaningful change. Somewhat of a better alternative to your last option.

    We already have the best gun laws in the US. Lowest overall tax burden. Arguably the best trust laws (making it easy enough for even ordinary folks to create trusts to help protect their assets, without the expense that normally means only wealthy folks can afford to do so). In most categories, NH is either at the top, or close to it.

    And, with an extremely-accessible political process and lots of dedicated activists, we’re not sitting idly by and basking in that, but working continually to make it better.

  2. RegT says:

    Everything I have read about Free State New Hampshire says FAIL. I wish you luck, but I think FS NH is doing worse then FS Wyoming, which hasn’t really gotten off the ground, either.

    And how in the world do you imagine you have the best gun laws in the country? Doesn’t NH still require a permit to carry concealed? Does NH recognize every other state’s CHL permits? Do they allow full-auto firearm ownership? No, I didn’t think so. Check out http://www.handgunlaw.us/.

    NH has 0% state income tax and 0% sales tax, , but the second highest property tax in the country. (Yes, if you rent, you are paying it, also, in the cost of your rent. Or did you imagine your landlord is paying it for you out of the goodness of his heart?)

    Wyoming: The State with the lowest overall tax burden http://community.stretcher.com/forums/t/6670.aspx

    And pretty damned good gun laws, including no permit required for residents (not quite as good as Vermont carry, but you can’t own suppressors in Vermont like you can in Wyoming.)

    Montana recognizes NH permits, but NH does not recognize MT. NH does not recognize non-resident permits, as some other states like MT do. Can you carry without a permit, as you can in VT, AK, AZ, WY, and most of MT (except the cities)?

    Besides, if TSHTF, you are going to be overrun by all the city folk from MA, CT, and probably NY as well. NH is beautiful, but not a place to look for freedom. Too many Massholes living there now.

    • Flint says:

      “Doesn’t NH still require a permit to carry concealed?”

      Yup. Would have removed that, last year, except the NRA came in and worked to kill the bill. It will most likely pass, this year. Of course, the license is trivial to obtain. Single-page, single-side. $10 for four years. No photographs, fingerprints, or training requirement. They have fourteen calendar days to approve or deny, and if they take longer or deny improperly, the individual officer responsible is /personally/ liable for court costs, so they have a strong incentive to behave. The only reason we haven’t been able to get the license removed earlier, is that it’s hard to get folks to get annoyed enough, since the license is so minor. Oh, and there’s no arbitrary age limit; if I want my kids to be able to carry in order to defend themselves, they can.

      Of course, you can carry openly with no license, and it’s the official, public opinion of the AG’s office (and relying upon such opinion letters is an automatic defense to prosecution in NH) that no reasonable person would ever fear the mere presence of a firearm, so open carry, alone, can never be a cause for a “disturbing the peace” charge.

      The licenses are also only recorded by the local police, so there’s no statewide database of licenses and, hence, no issue with cops running your driver’s license at a traffic stop and finding out that you have a CCW.

      And, of course, the only place in NH that is off-limits to carry is courts. That’s it.

      “Do they allow full-auto firearm ownership? No, I didn’t think so.”

      Um, yes, they do. NH has no laws regarding NFA weapons (other than “no hunting with machineguns”). If you own an NFA weapon with all the Federal paperwork, NH doesn’t care. If you own an NFA weapon without any of the Federal paperwork, the Feds will care, but NH won’t.

      Not sure what your obsession with reciprocity is. The whole thing will go to Constitutional Carry within the next year or two.

      “Wyoming: The State with the lowest overall tax burden http://community.stretcher.com/forums/t/6670.aspx

      While some blog post may be interesting to read, it is hardly a scientific analysis. All independent reports are that NH is right at the bottom, just behind Alaska (and Alaska is disqualified, in my opinion, because their low personal taxes are subsidized by their socialist “oil companies must write you a check each year” policy).

      Any comparison involving NH property taxes should mention how widely the tax rates vary. Property taxes are primarily set at the local level. If you want to live in a town that offers a lot of services, you can move there, and pay for that. If you want to live in a town where you take care of almost everything, yourself, move to a town like that. The residents of the town are the legislature of that town, and they set the budget each year. The tax rate is simply the ratio of the budget to the valuation of all the property in the town. If you halve the budget, you will automatically halve the tax rate. Every year, we sit down and go through the budget submitted by the budget committee, line by line, and certify or amend the line items as we see fit.

      “Besides, if TSHTF, you are going to be overrun by all the city folk from MA, CT, and probably NY as well. NH is beautiful, but not a place to look for freedom. Too many Massholes living there now.”

      The “too many Massholes” thing is an urban legend. The areas with the highest concentration of folks who’ve moved from Mass, tend to have the most conservative budgets and such, in general. And no, I’m not worried about zombies, if TSHTF; we have something like 1.4 firearms per person, folks who know how to use them, and relatively-few border crossings. The border could be locked-down with relative ease. The zombies are more likely to head south, anyway.

  3. Skip says:

    It has to be local.
    Get off your as and run for city counsel, mayor, whatever.
    If you don’t qualify, vote your person who does.
    It starts here.

  4. Y.T. says:


    Not so likely. You’ve got the echo-chamber of the internets, where people can rant and rave and no one cares.

    You’ve got bread and games stupefinyg people.

    And last but not least, there’s the drugs.

    12% of adults in the US are on antidepressants, more probably on other psychiatric drugs.

    Anger is no longer seen as a normal, healthy emotion in response to assholes.

    Being shy’s and reclusive .. normal human characteristics are sometimes treated as pathological.

    If people won’t be so desperate anymore to really try something, be it civil disobedience or outright insurrection, because they’ve been drugged or they are distracted by other things, who will change things?

    No one. Festering status quo till the end of time….

  5. Nathan says:

    I am an expatriated US citizen. I have become such more out of good fortune than outright political or social antagonism, but I can’t help but feel slightly antagonistic. I have found a home in New Zealand; a country that is largely (as described) too small to notice and with a civilian population that is (at least somewhat) well-armed and self-reliant. During the course of an average week, the biggest regret I often experience is that things here are changing due to an unforseen sort of colonialism. Even in the short time that I’ve lived here, life has become more and more Americanized due to the influence of (not government), but businesses; large businesses; who’s reach influences even the comparatively small NZ parliment (often extending from Australia, which is really quite Americanized and becoming even more so).

    I can understand the need to be free of government opression. I hate the TSA and anti-internet law as much as any other free person. Yet I also lament the loss of liberty to the threat of Plutocracy, with an ever-increasing sense of classism. The marketing and advertising crowds out the voices of many local enterprises. Cheap imports squash valuable cultural artifacts. The kids don’t often realize that they’re picking up American phrases and language from television and the internet. Nobody knows who Derek Jeter is, but they all seem to like his jersey.

    Being an expat reminds me that the smallest minority is the individual, who’s liberty may come under threat from any larger entity, not merely those of the political arena. We love the free-market because it brings us opportunity, but at what point do wealthy entrepreneurs become tyrants in their own right; presiding over serfdoms of consumers?

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