Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Brush Fires of Liberty: Announcing the Free State Project

[This will soon appear on a new website at]

Imagine an America where every State is in a friendly, earnest competition to make their State the freest State in the country. Each State legislature has decided to carefully inspect their Constitution and identify the many areas where State authorities have overstepped their constitutionally granted powers. They have rectified every aspect of their government that hinders the free market, and re-tooled their legal system to assure fair play and equal justice for all. They are working deliberately to remove all impediments to economic freedom. Furthermore, each state is asserting, in no uncertain terms, that they do not honor Federal laws which exceed the enumerated powers explicitly granted in the Constitution, according to the Tenth Amendment of the Bill of Rights.

The ideal result would be a nation of 50 States as different as the people who choose to live there. This was the original intention of America's founders. Their desire was to give as much decision-making power as possible to smaller government entities, while stripping away as much power as possible from larger government entities. They knew that the closer the citizens are to their own governments, the more they would actually participate in key decisions. Their intention was a radically decentralized system in which each state and thousands of cities towns, villages and counties decided, imagined, and created the kind of societies that they desired.

In such free communities, individualism and cooperation would be boundless, with everyone living by the Golden Rule. Treat others as you would have them treat you. Play fair. No force or fraud allowed. Everyone would bloom where they planted themselves. Secure in property rights and sound money, they could build for the future as they enjoyed the present. Taxes would be minimal. Governing functions would be largely by norms, with a justice system that was based on preserving freedom. Obviously, no two communities would be alike. In fact, the nation would experience diversity unified by a commitment to Liberty. What else could "yearning to breathe free" mean?

The most famous phrase in the most important political document ever crafted is "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." Most every American knows these words by heart, and would agree that this is the essence of the goal and purpose of American government. Indeed, these words are the soul of the American Dream. These words define the self-evident, unalienable rights held high as a banner in the Declaration of Independence that began the American Revolution just 235 years ago.

Today it is easy to lose sight of the fact that America's founders intended America to be a nation of free, independent States, in which free and independent individuals lived. In fact, at the end of the Declaration when the united States of America are mentioned, the word "united" is not capitalized. There was no entity "United States of America." There was a confederation of free States declaring their independence from the tyrannical English crown.

A thoughtful reading of the Declaration makes it clear to the aware observer that we are in the same situation today relative to our own Federal Government as the colonists were back then. Americans are taxed at all levels more than 70% of their incomes, inflation has destroyed their retirements, we have foreign legions attempting to suppress native populations all over the world, and the war on terror has laid in place the most sophisticated total surveillance and control grid in history. And we are bankrupt.

In case you haven't read it recently, this is the relevant passage:
"That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.....When a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."

The easiest way, and certainly the preferred way, is through peaceful transformation. Violent revolutions seldom end well, and too often the ruling class foments violence in "false flag" operations to create a reaction to clamp down on dissidents. There is certainly no need for violence today. A "New Great Awakening" is well under way. People everywhere are waking up to the fraud and deceit the system uses to control them. We have passed a tipping point from which there is no return to the previous state of hypnotic control.

People have many ways of waking up. There is more than one entrance down the rabbit hole. All of them can be characterized as a "Truth Movement." (Isn't it cute how the Ruling Class has tried to make "truther" a dirty word?) Each individual awakening involves finding some way that the ruling class has deceived them, aided and abetted by the Mainstream Media. Each is a "red pill," to use an analogy from "The Matrix," that opens their eyes and wakes them up to another way of viewing what is going on. Today this is happening worldwide, as people everywhere are waking up to the reality of the Ruling Class, what they are up to, and how their control system works. Truth demands "Courage and Honesty" and is the bedrock of of Freedom.

Returning to the Declaration of Independence, it ends with a clear statement about each State's independence and sovereignty: "and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do." Could anything be more clear than the original intention of America's founders for free, sovereign, independent States? There it is, the key to the American Dream and Freedom hiding in plain sight!

The Tea Party movement is based on the spirit of the American Revolution. It is "explicitly populist, and is generally recognized as conservative and libertarian. Reduction of the national debt and federal budget deficit, and adherence to an originalist interpretation of the United States Constitution." Just as the Boston Tea Party in 1773 is said to have sparked the first American Revolution, we can easily date the second American Revolution from the reaction to the October, 2008 TARP “Banker Bailout Bill.” Thus far, most of the action has been directed at the Federal Government and federal elected officials. But that is changing.

A far more effective approach is to start "Brush Fires of Liberty" in every state in America. Most every state now has courageous leaders like Representative Charles Key in Oklahoma. These patriots have introduced numerous creative pieces of legislation based on the idea of 10th Amendment Nullification. They can now focus their attention equally toward examining their own State governments against the plumb-line of its own Constitution.

Most State governments have, thanks in part to the influence of the Federal Government, vastly exceeded the intentions and scope of their founders. Both the Federal Government, and most State Governments, are like a horrific hybrid creature that is a cross between a giant tick and an octopus! The people are trapped in countless ways by multiple tentacles, while their life blood and energy is sucked up by taxes, and poisonous policies infect the community.

Thanks to the Tea Party Spirit, each state has scores of leaderless organizations following the model of the groundbreaking book, "The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leaderless Organizations." (Download pdf summary.) These organizations are developing their political and leadership skills, and are now well-positioned to work with and support Liberty-minded politicians to reform their own States, City, and County governments.

The Free State Project is a leaderless effort to deal with the tremendous crises that we are now experiencing not only at the Federal Government level, but also in each State government. The vision is for each state to set a goal to develop the freest and fairest market economy of all. Frankly we have no choice. The bankruptcy of the modern, Western welfare state is evident worldwide. Just as the Federal Government could not do anything to save the victims of hurricane Katrina, it can't help the states either. We must each find our own way through this crisis and depend upon ourselves.

Each State must also clearly declare that they refuse to honor Federal laws which exceed the powers explicitly granted in the Constitution. 10th Amendment Nullification needs to become a way of life for the states until the Federal Government is again restrained by the Constitution.

The Federal Government is bankrupt, paying its bills like a counterfeiter printing up fake money in the basement. In this case, the Federal Reserve (it is neither "federal" nor a "reserve"), a cabal of private banking interests creates "money" out of thin air and uses it to purchase US Treasury debt so the government can pay its bills. Government spending means government control and corruption. The US dollar is rapidly losing its favored status as the world's reserve currency, as evidenced by skyrocketing prices in gold, silver, and other commodities. Unfunded Federal liabilities top $100 trillion and can never be paid. Worldwide, financial derivatives number almost $600 trillion, an amount equal to 20 times world domestic product. The national and global economic situation is clearly unsustainable.

At the State level, more than 40 States are facing bankruptcy due to overspending and the effects of the Greatest Depression, as trend forecaster Gerald Celente aptly calls it. Each state is faced with making drastic cuts in their budgets and retooling their governments to fit the new reality. Everyone is realizing we cannot continue as we have.

The beauty of the Free State Project is that it is so simple. No American should have any difficulty understanding the objective. Freedom is in our DNA. We all know what the real American Dream is. Freedom means not to be taken care of by someone else, or to have a parasitic relationship with anyone. The politicians and their cronies are likely to protest that it cannot be done. But we should not believe them. Why should they want to give up their power and privilege obtained by using government to control us? WE are the ones paying the bills.

The Great Awakening comes along with the Great Reckoning. We are witnessing the collapse of the central government paradigm. Those people who want to be free, the creators, the artists, the inventors, the entrepreneurs, craftsmen and workers, the savers and investors, have begun to ask themselves "Why are we allowing this to happen? Why are we supporting this? Isn't there a better way? What is a free society like?" Do you want to be free?

The creators of this website hope to use it to empower you to become a vital part in making your State a Free State. The first step in this process is to give you the vision. Now you have it. Shortly we hope to provide a number of different tools to help you become more effective in this effort. We plan to provide discussion forums, as well as a link to various projects in each State in America. We will publicize successful efforts as models as well as point out pitfalls encountered along the way.

It is important to realize that Gandhi pointed the way when he instructed those who wanted to follow him, to instead "be the change you want to be." You will change the world by first changing yourself. You have to choose to be free. Likewise, you will change your nation by helping to change your family, city, county, and your State. But it all starts with your commitment and creative decision to fulfill your destiny. Then help empower others to do the same.

I have laid out the the vision. It came to me in a creative spark and continues to unfold. I think it is emerging from our collective American DNA. For a fuller picture of the infinite possibilities a radically decentralized governmental structure offers, see this excellent article which fortuitously appeared as I was working on this. With the vision, and the creativity and commitment of each person who catches it, we will restore America to the Dream of our forebears. 

Our time is now. What we need to do now is to start the conversation among our family, friends and neighbors everywhere. Like a giant wave approaching, the tipping point has crested and is sweeping us along toward an amazing destiny. That time we've all been waiting for, that unspoken anticipation lurking in the recesses of our minds, is awakening with fresh vigor and is rising within us. Do you feel it? Can you begin to see what real freedom looks like? I can. It feels really, really good. Imagine the possibilities. A bright, new day is coming. Get ready!


Anonymous said...

Did you know there's a group that already calls themselves The Free State Project?

Porter Haskell Davis said...

Yes, New Hampshire has a Free State project designed to bring 20,000 people into that State to make it a Free State. The vision I have received is to mobilize Americans everywhere to make all 50 States free. No relocation necessary.

I've also just been informed of another like-minded project, the Republic for the united States of America. I haven't had time to look deeply into it, but at first glance, I want to know more.

Anonymous said...

I think it's a good idea. It just seems if you want greater web exposure your searcg results are going to get jumbled up with the other group.

Porter Haskell Davis said...

Marketing is certainly a valid concern. Free State describes the essence of the proposal in such a way that it cannot be confused. No doubt both the New Hampshire project and the larger project will able to mutually benefit. I would hope they've done some pioneering strategy and tactics to restore freedom in the States.

Various State projects will be linked from our website, and we hope to each other. Empowerment is the name of the game. The Centralists stay in power by enforcing various kinds of dependency and helplessness, along with parasitism.

Every State will have some kind of a Free State movement, except those chosen by Centralists. They couldn't survive long, though, without a base of productive people to tax and regulate. Freedom will be a self-proving experiment. A free people will always out produce, and enjoy more satisfaction in life than those who are caught up on either end of a parasitic relationship.