Sunday, September 20, 2020

Not too much freedom, please!

I’m feeling grateful today and hope you are too.

I’ve heard it said that the problem with atheists is when they feel grateful they have no one to thank.  Or as it usually written, no One to thank.  That may be true in the case of a hand grenade landing at your feet that turns out to be a dud, but for other situations I can name names and state specifically why I’m grateful.

Oh, you want me to name a few?  At the outset I feel like Leonard Read attempting to explain how a pencil is made.  It can’t be done except in a sketchy way — too many contributors.  But I said “a few,” so I’m going to eliminate a billion or two and focus on my own experience, where it starts with family and certain friends.  Outside that circle, I am especially grateful to Lew Rockwell for making the works of Ludwig von Mises and Murray Rothbard, among many others, available for the effort to read them.  Visit and discover the countless treasures for yourself, and explore the vast library of articles at  In a world dominated by statist crackpots of all stripes imagine where freedom would be without Lew and his ever-expanding influence.  To paraphrase a line from Johnny Depp’s character in Don Juan DeMarco, we can breathe in Lew’s world. 

I am grateful for all this but also bothered by what I consider a failing of most freedom fighters. 

Give them freedom, but not too much 

The problem is this: No matter how destructive the State might get, these libertarians do not call for its abolition.  They want a State held to a constitution, with the constitution serving as a limit on its power.  The problem, they insist, is the State’s transgression of its charter.  Without specifying how, they want the State reduced to the point where it does no more than defend individual rights.  The fact that no state has ever done this, that it forever seeks more power not less, doesn’t discourage them.  To them the State per se is not the problem, it is the State’s size or range of what it can legally do.  They want a small state that stays that way.

Even if that could be achieved not everyone who lived under its jurisdiction would be happy.  There will always be complaints and the temptation is great to use the small State in an attempt to assuage them.  And for that the State will need to expand — more taxes, more regulations, more agencies, a cheaper dollar.  

And what happens when the next crisis arrives?  Will people deal with it themselves or call on the small State for help?  As Robert Higgs has documented, the leviathan State is heavily indebted to crises for its expansion.

It should be abundantly clear that the State can’t protect us from life’s hazards, that given the lockdowns and other mandates of the current panic, the State and its corrupt media have made matters infinitely worse.  It’s only the free market that’s keeping us alive.


Give a neocon and libertarian a box to check if they believe the State is necessary and both will immediately mark it.  The free market can create every kind of imaginable and unimaginable wonder, but somehow it is viewed as fragile.  It cannot protect itself, it can’t stand on its own feet.  It cannot protect you and me and our families from viruses, bombs, thieves, and murderers. For that we need an anti-market force, a monopoly, to keep us safe.  

Adam Smith’s Invisible Hand works “miracles” in a free market, but only in a free market.  Add the State to the mix — add a central bank, taxes, corruption, regulations, welfare, confusion, surveillance, war, bureaucracy, and propaganda — and everything goes to hell.  Hope?  The State has grown so corrupt and people so dependent on it that many libertarians are resigned to waiting for its collapse, rather that try to abolish it.  


If your political goal is a small State you won’t get it.  Or if you do, it won’t stay small.  

Don’t handicap the free market with the imposition of a State.  Make a 100% free market your goal.  Abolish the State.  

I’ve created a video and posted it on YouTube so you can “vote” for a free market by giving a thumbs up to the video.  Imagine if this eventually takes off and greatly exceeds the number of votes the State collects for the winner of its election.  Could the State safely ignore the results?  

I don’t think so.  But you need to watch the video and vote, or it won’t happen.   

Do Not Consent - Think OUTSIDE the voting booth

Friday, September 18, 2020

A serious shortage of testosterone

I wondered how a tough prisoner kept in isolation for the past year might react if he was released and transported to a street corner on the outskirts of a major American city — say, near Lenox Square in Atlanta — without prepping from the prison bureaucrats that had kept him confined.   

So I made one up.  No name, just an incorrigible prisoner.  Here’s my take on how he might react:

You know what he would see — people going about with their faces bandaged from the bridge of their nose to their chins.  Was this another anthrax thing, like what happened after the Twin Towers, only on a bigger scale?  Was it just this city?  The air seemed okay to him.  In fact it seemed great, being outside prison walls.  He had been breathing all his life without covering his face.  Neither did his jailers cover up when they shoved food at him.  You took your chances.  That’s life.

But this!

The more he looked the more he couldn’t buy what he saw.  Some of the masks were stylish, like it was part of their regular dress.  Designer masks, for God’s sake.  They’re making a fashion statement.  

Something’s missing.  What doesn’t he know?

He checked himself.  People don’t look like him.  He looked decent enough, he thought, but his eyes gave him away.  They were hard, like his life.  Whaddya expect?  That’s how you survived in his lousy world.  His jailers had tried to humiliate him, to make him crawl, to keep his trap shut, and when that bombed they put him in the hole.  That’ll teach him.  We’re in charge here and he’s gonna believe it.  They were on top because they had the numbers, he was only one stooge.  They had been bowing all their miserable lives and now they wanted to return the favor to their captives.  He was going to learn to obey, by God.  He was going to learn to say “Yes, sir!” and mean it.  

They might as well try to reform a rock.  To him it wasn’t a choice.  It was an animal reaction — push him, he pushed back, a lot harder, until they knocked him down.  Like an animal.  He knew the odds but didn’t care.  He had fought the odds all his life.  He would smack one or two before getting laid out from some fat screw’s club.  Sure, he made it worse but so what?  They were mugs getting their kicks beating the crap out of him.  He wasn’t gonna let it go without a fight.  Even as the blows rained down, he took solace that he had it over their chicken-shit lives.  They might kill him, but it’ll be the only time he goes.  They croaked with every breath they took like the pissant cowards they were.

Turned out they couldn’t kill him, not the regular way, so they let him out, a real shock.  But something wasn’t right, seeing all these half-faces.  If he was the screaming type he would’ve screamed.  He almost did.  Was this the screws’s doing, to make him lose his mind? 

“Hey, lady,” he says to a mummified stranger who had stopped to cross the street.   “What’s with . . . y’know?” 

She glares at him.  The light changes in her favor, and she slides in with other masked wonders to cross the street.

“Hey, man,” he says to a guy about to cross, “tell me about the masks.”

He starts off without replying, so he grabs him by the arm.  The guy barks through his muffler, “It’s the latest fashion, a-hole!  What else?”  Then rips his arm loose and leaves.

That’s what he thought he said.  Couldn’t be sure.  If he had been sure he might’ve continued the conversation along different lines.  

This was mass sickness.  How could this happen?

He needed information.  He started to walk not knowing where he would find it.  He came to a CVS.  Why the hell not?  He went inside where a voice politely mumbled something about wearing a mask or leave.

He turned and saw the short young woman who had just spoken gazing at him, her face tightly wrapped.  “It’s store policy,” she said.  


“To keep us all safe.  What else?”

“Safe from what?”

“Are you serious?”

“Do I look like I’m not?  What’s going on?!  Everyone’s hiding their faces!”

She answered carefully.  “No, they’re protecting their faces.  If you’re carrying the virus you might breathe on them and infect them too, if they’re not wearing a mask.”

“What are you talking about?”

“The COVID virus!  Ever hear of that?  It’s only been in the news for six months!”

“Never heard of it.”

“Well, now you have, and it’s been real scary, and you’re going to have to leave or put on a mask.”

“What’s special about this COVID thing?”

“It’s killing people.”

“That’s what viruses do.  So why the masks?”

“The old and sick are especially vulnerable.”

“Do I look old or sick?  You don’t.  Why are you wearing a mask?”

“Because it’s store policy.  Look, I’m only doing what I’m told.  Don’t make such a fuss.”

“Don’t make a fuss, don’t make a fuss.  This is crazy.  And you know it!”

“Just leave, please.”

“Ever hear of someone getting kicked out of prison?  Naw, never happens.  Well, it happened to me.  Couldn’t figure out why, but I’m beginning to catch on.  They couldn’t kill me there, so they figured they could kill me out here, by turning my dumb ass loose without a mask.”  He laughed.  “But it ain’t working.  It’s the other way around.  You guys are killing yourselves, not me.”

Then he added:  “Get with it, kid, they’re gonna keep you masked until you put up a fight.”

“It’s store policy.  I need the job.  Now, please leave.”

He left.  No mask, just a smile.

Monday, September 14, 2020

Trump, Biden, or the free market

The title of this article suggests we have a choice between three candidates.  

And we do.

But where do we find the free market on the ballot?  Ballots contain the names of people.  The free market is not a person, it is many persons, starting with you and me.  We who try to make a living through voluntary exchanges constitute, on a state election ballot, an unrepresented force in deciding who will be in charge of our lives.  

If we’re not on an “official” ballot, how can we ever get representation? 

By announcing it.

Why assume the state’s elections are the only elections that matter? Let’s have one of our own -- and make it never-ending.  Let’s give voice to that which we truly need to survive and prosper, the free market. 

I am saying the free market is our government — you, me, and the millions of other participants — and that which announces itself as our government is a criminal gang, an intruder feeding on our lifeblood and keeping the free market from working to our benefit.

With enough voices, we will be heard.  With enough voices the intruder might go away permanently.

The free market doesn’t need special-occasion elections like the one coming up.  It holds elections constantly, night and day, every day, through the decisions of consumers to buy or refrain from buying certain products or services.  

Try this quiz

What entity comes to mind with these words and phrases: war, war destruction, war dead & wounded, bombs, civilian casualties and displacements, war propaganda, The Big Lie, PTSD, poverty, conscription, foreign intervention, WMDs, “intelligence” operations, revolution, secession, civil war, assassinations, printing press money, inflation, hyperinflation, astronomical debt, economic crises, massive unemployment, lockdowns, mandates, masks, income taxes, sales taxes, estate taxes, property taxes, taxes called “contributions,” hidden taxes, taxes and more taxes, and more taxes after those, totalitarianism, executive orders, bad schooling, expensive schooling, trillion-dollar student debt, dumbed-down students, dumbed-down electorate, “never let a crisis go to waste,” servile media, all-pervasive corruption.

If your answer is “the State,” then we agree.  

The State’s sordid and destructive history is explained by its very nature: a supremely powerful monopoly able to impose its agenda on the rest of the country.  Its interventionist policies, both domestic and abroad, create crises that allow it to circumvent written law, urged on by the media outcry of “Do something!”

The State is the ultimate cartel (it forcibly prohibits competitors) and is the source of supportive cartels — such as the Federal Reserve.  The FED is legally allowed to print whatever quantity of dollars it wishes, usually through the scheme of “purchasing” the State’s debt, with taxpayers unknowingly held responsible for that debt.

A nice racket, the State.  And the nearly unanimous view is we need it.

Open competition, on the other hand, is a hallmark of the free market.  Money would be the result of market choices, subject to market forces.  Attempts to form cartels without the support of the State would invariably fail. (See Gabriel Kolko’s The Triumph of Conservatism: A Reinterpretation of American History, 1900-1916; see also Murray Rothbard’s The Progressive Era.)    

Neither major party supports the free market — these days not even with lip service.  The free market doesn’t need supporting, because it doesn’t need the State.  

The free market personified

If the free market were a person in today’s world it would champion the abolition of the taxing authority.  Without a taxing authority there would be no taxes.  Without taxes there would be no theft by taxation.  People would keep the money they earned and decide for themselves what to do with it.

Without a taxing authority there would be no elections, no wars for banking and corporate aggrandizement — no more political “heroes” like Lincoln, Wilson, and Roosevelt.  

Without a taxing authority there would be no politically-appointed bankers trying to direct the economy with a printing press. 

Without a taxing authority there would be no State.  

The State has a constant need to redirect voter attention because of its crises, and there’s no better distraction than a war.  Since it controls the MSM, getting the public behind another foreign invasion is a task it is supremely able to undertake.  (Trailer, Wag the Dog).  With the right propaganda, uncritical Americans will support our troops as they roll into some country few knew existed much less could find on a map.  Better for the State to get hit by a handful of antiwar protestors than incur the wrath of investors and breadwinners, if the economy is tanking.   It’s a job that has to be done — not State “deciders” but the poor bastards they send overseas to get it done.  Deciders are too important to risk their necks.  They run the country, not you and me who are expendable.

If the current system of government strikes you as suicidal and insane, and getting worse the more you think about it, then it’s time to think about a radically different approach. 

Seeing Americans walking around masked leads me to suspect that freedom has become a dirty word, but the day will come when a few people, then more, then almost everyone will rip them from their faces — and the sudden onrush of freedom they had been duped from experiencing will be a monumental deliverance.  They might organize mask bonfires with fireworks to celebrate. They might even question the need for the State itself, the elite that kept them masked to keep them obedient.

They might be willing to try a radically different approach — one they’re thoroughly familiar with that’s been available all along: The free market.

It’s difficult to acquire an understanding of free markets in today’s Left-dominated culture.  But you can’t support free markets if you don’t understand them.  For this purpose I’m pleased to recommend an engaging introduction to free market economics: Michael Dahlen’s Free Market Economics: A Primer.  A great follow-up to Dahlen’s eBook is Lew Rockwell’s The Free Market Reader, a collection of essays available free at  Lessons for the Young Economist, The Politically Incorrect Guide to Capitalism, and Chaos Theory by Robert P. Murphy will further expand your understanding. 

And for those who are curious about government by the free market only, see my 10-minute YouTube video here — and don’t forget to vote when you’re done!  


Friday, September 4, 2020

Why I want Big Government and you should too!

The deafening silence of the mainstream media over the CDC’s admission that only 6% of COVID patients died of COVID-only is hardly shocking.  They seem on-board with everything that brings this country to complete destruction — a terrorized and submissive population being a crucial element — and they will not allow facts to stand in the way.  

But there is silence on another issue that is even worse.  

Most likely you’re reading this on some digital device — smartphone, tablet, or computer.  You know in a general sense where your device came from: The free market.  The same could be said about uncountable numbers of other things that didn’t exist in nature as such, but were painstakingly and ingeniously derived from nature and marketed for consumer satisfaction.  A simple pencil is one such commodity. 

The free market serves the consumer — you and me.  Consumers are the “real bosses” in the capitalist system, as Mises expressed it.  But of course you knew that.

Are there limitations to the free market?  Do consumers have needs or desires that the free market cannot fulfill in principle?  Sure, it can produce a pencil, though no one knows exactly how, but can it protect consumers from fraud, theft, murder, and foreign invasion, for example, and do so at an affordable price?  Robert P. Murphy thinks it can.  Edward Stringham, arguing for private governance, blames overly pessimistic views of removing state predation for hiding “the unseen beauty that underpins markets.” 

Can the free market provide sound money? Put another way, can sound money arise from something other than trade, such as from the heads of 12 unelected bureaucrats in control of a legal counterfeiting racket? The question almost answers itself, but if you need help consult Rothbard

. . . if we wish to eliminate government invasion of person and property, we have no more important task than to explore the ways and means of a free market in money.

Can the free market protect you from disease or make you well when protection breaks down?  Though we do a myriad of things to prolong our life and improve our health, we will eventually graduate beyond our biological bodies, according to futurist Ray Kurzweil, as we approach the technological Singularity.  

Before the middle of this century, the growth rates of our technology—which will be indistinguishable from ourselves—will be so steep as to appear essentially vertical. From a strictly mathematical perspective, the growth rates will still be finite but so extreme that the changes they bring about will appear to rupture the fabric of human history. That, at least, will be the perspective of unenhanced biological humanity.

The Singularity will represent the culmination of the merger of our biological thinking and existence with our technology, resulting in a world that is still human but that transcends our biological roots. There will be no distinction, post-Singularity, between human and machine or between physical and virtual reality. If you wonder what will remain unequivocally human in such a world, it’s simply this quality: ours is the species that inherently seeks to extend its physical and mental reach beyond current limitations.

Is this Singularity inevitable?  Unless we “repeal capitalism and every vestige of economic competition,” it is, according to Kurzweil.

This and much more is discussed in great detail in his seminal The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology.  For those wondering whether I’m quoting an unreliable source, consider that most of his predictions to date have proven either fully correct or essentially correct.  For more about the accuracy of his predictions and the exponential thesis underlying his methodology, see "How My Predictions Are Faring" and “The dawn of the singularity, a visual timeline of Ray Kurzweil’s predictions.”

Can the free market protect you from domestic invasion?  Can it safeguard your life and property from state-directed hordes of armed thugs?  Here the answer is no.  The State, with its monopoly on legal violence, makes this impossible.  

Most people, I would say, think of the State in all its forms (local, state, and federal) as their government.  We should not think this way, given what the unhampered market can do.  We need to view the free market as our true government, one that has been violated by an intruder, the State.  Thus, if the State can be removed, the full power of freedom will prevail.  We will have, in a real sense, a Big Government consisting of a fully free market.  

How do we remove the State?  We start by declaring our goal is the free market, without the State.  If enough people cast their vote for a free market, instead of State rulers, we will be heard.  We will make a difference.

To this end I’ve produced a 10-minute movie calling on viewers to vote for a free market if they agree with the ideas it presents.  It’s a simple thumbs-up on YouTube.  For those who have already seen it and didn’t vote, please indicate your support (or not) by voting.  This is a chance to make your vote count, at least in the long run, but possibly, given today’s chaos, not so long.  
George Ford Smith is the author of nine books, including The Flight of the Barbarous RelicEyes of Fire: Thomas Paine and the American Revolution, and The Fall of Tyranny, the Rise of Liberty.  He is also a filmmaker whose latest work discusses the possibility of a free market government, Do Not Consent: Think OUTSIDE the voting Booth.

The State Unmasked

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