Liberty and ResponsibilitySubmitted by StaxBrix on Sun, 07/20/2008 - 16:43
Individual Liberty requires and fosters personal responsibility. Henry Brooks Adams said: "Absolute liberty is absence of restraint; responsibility is restraint; therefore, the ideally free individual is responsible to himself."
When we are truly free there will be no governmental requirements, commitments or regulations, only voluntary associations. Liberty is not a privilege bestowed on people by government, this government was instituted to protect the freedom and liberties that are the natural state of man. Thus, government was instituted to protect us from each other, not ourselves.
"The greatest threat to the future of our nation - to our freedom - is not foreign military aggression ... but the growing dependence of the people on a paternalistic government. A nation is no stronger than its people and the best measure of their strength is how they accept responsibility. There will never be a great society unless the materialism of the welfare state is replaced by individual initiative and responsibility."
-Charles B. Shuman
When we give government our responsibility we also give it our liberty. The more liberty that government has, the less we have. This works both ways. That is why our founders tried to restrain the government with the Constitution and Bill of Rights. The smaller and more restrained the government, the more individual liberty and personal responsibility it's people will have.
Over the last hundred years or so, our liberties have been siphoned away slowly by "liberal" and "conservative" socialists, statists and fascists. Both Republicans and Democrats have violated the Constitution and Bill of Rights in the name of "social justice", "economic security", "physical security", "equal rights" and any number of popular catch phrases. They use fear, lies, propaganda and manipulation to gain support, then use regulation, intimidation and force to push their own idea of morality on you. These people claim power over your life assuming that they know better than you; how you should behave, how you should conduct your business, what you consume and how you should live. This is the intolerable arrogance of the nanny state.
Liberty and Responsibility
"It must be obvious that liberty necessarily means freedom to choose foolishly as well as wisely; freedom to choose evil as well as good; freedom to enjoy the rewards of good judgment, and freedom to suffer the penalties of bad judgment. If this is not true, the word "freedom" has no meaning."
Indeed, we have no freedom if we are not free to make our own choices, good or bad, and enjoy the fruits or consequences. If we cannot govern our own lives, we are slaves to those who make our decisions for us. What timid, cowardly fool allows someone else to take such control of their existence?
"Few of us seem to want to keep government out of our personal affairs and responsibilities. Many of us seem to favor various types of government guaranteed and compulsory "security." We say that we want personal freedom, but we demand government housing, government price controls, government-guaranteed jobs and wages. We boast that we are responsible persons, but we vote for candidates who promise us special privileges, government pensions, government subsidies, and government electricity."
"Man must have the right of choice, even to choose wrong, if he shall ever learn to choose right."
-Josiah C. Wedgwood