Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Don't look to Washington, Look to Yourself

With all of the problems we are facing, it is understandable that people are looking for a leader to show us the way out. The worst place we can look, however, is Washington, DC. The Democrats look to Obama as their savior, while the Republicans search for this generation’s Reagan. Looking for a good politician, however, is like looking for a good hurricane. There are no good hurricanes; there are just less destructive ones. It is the nature of the political profession to be meddlesome and to use force to control people and destroy liberty.

Politicians are largely a reflection of the people. It is often said that people get the government they deserve. That is what has gotten us into the mess we are currently facing. We are looking for the government to fix the problems that we wanted them to create in the first place. We have allowed the government to swell to unbearable levels and now we are looking for other politicians to try to override the expansion. It is a noble undertaking for activist organizations to fight the growth of government and for grassroots organizations to try to elect freedom fighters, but at best they will only slow the growth but not reverse it. We must not look to Washington or to the parties to fix our problems. We must look to ourselves.

Washington cannot fix our problems because most people are not willing to accept what is necessary to fix them. The solution to 99 percent of our problems, especially the domestic ones, is more liberty and less government. Most people, even those who may support liberty in their own lives, favor governmental tyranny over the lives of others, and look to the government as a security blanket. A candidate that truly advocated liberty could never win an election today. Too few people understand what it means to be free. We have become a country of jealous spoiled children, always looking for someone to kiss our boo boos and constantly whining that life isn’t fair.

We no longer strive to achieve as individuals. Rather, we complain about those who have more than we do. The homeless man complains about the man who makes $40 thousand a year. The man who makes $40 thousand complains about the man who makes $100 thousand. The man who makes $100,000 complains about the millionaire. Instead of looking to those who have achieved as role models or as competition pushing us to work harder, we complain about how unfair their success is and hope for their downfall. We are no longer a country that admires success; instead we celebrate and reward failure. Is it any wonder that as spoiled children we now have government acting like an overbearing parent?

If we want to break free and become adults, we must grow up and accept responsibility for ourselves. We must use our minds and stop expecting someone else to take care of us. We must defend capitalism and work within our reality, using our rational minds, rather than escaping to a fantasy world. We live in a concrete reality, we can not change reality, we can only adapt to our surroundings by using our rational minds. This is what separates humans from animals, and adults from children. We must face the world free of contradictions and inconsistencies.
The government only functions to protect your life, liberty, and property. Government is only force-it can only act to physically stop something. It cannot give something to someone unless it first takes it away from someone else. We cannot demand that the government protect us from thieves and then expect it to steal on our behalf. We cannot complain when the government restricts our liberty and then demand it restricts the liberty of another.

Only when we are a people free of contradictions and inconsistencies in their beliefs and actions; only when we embrace reason and reality and use our rational minds to make decisions, rather than rely on our emotions in a fantasy world that cannot exist; only when we accept that voluntary trade in a capitalist system is the only moral and practical method for allocating scarce resources; only when we are worthy of liberty will we have a government that protects liberty.

We must stop looking to others for leadership and guidance. We must take it upon ourselves to learn about the economics and philosophy of liberty, and then spread that message to others. We cannot look to Washington or the government for leadership. We are individuals. We are rational, thinking beings. We are producers. We are free men and women, not spoiled children. It is time we started acting like it.

This article was also published at The D.C. Writeup


  1. Great article, Todd! It's refreshing to see an article is more apolitical, focusing on important central ideas. I agree that both sides put a tremendous stress on political leadership and lose sight of cultivating individual responsibility. A greater reminder for all.

  2. I agree with your opinions in this posting, as well as your other postings. Our government is mistreating our tax money and we are sick of it. Join us at