Who Else Wants to Laugh Off the Next Election, However it Goes?
By Joe Jarvis - March 21, 2018

Tyrants may oppress you. They may lead you into disastrous wars. But they don’t demand that you take personal responsibility, that great burden of democracy. And every tyrant worth his salt provides scapegoats for his people’s failures: It’s never your fault, it’s them.

Politicians sell victimhood. They convince individuals that nothing is in your control. And in doing so, the politicians seize the power for themselves.

Individuals really do have personal power, but they end up selling it to be cleansed of their personal responsibility.

The article quoted pits democracy as the opposite of tyranny. But it is really just an earlier stage of tyranny or the tyranny of the masses. As they say, democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner. (And liberty is a well-armed sheep contesting the vote.)

Democracy is the camel’s nose under the tent. It may seem like you are participating in the political system, but you still can’t opt out. Yet once people exercise their “right” to vote, the control is out of their hands. I did my part, they can say, the rest is out of my hands.

And that is another form of abandoning personal responsibility. You become the victim of a society out of your control, rather than the sole arbiter of your circumstances. Inevitably, this leads to tyranny as more and more things slip out of your control. We can blame the politicians or the voters, after all, aren’t we all just victims in this system?

But the first flaw is accepting the system that puts others in control of things only the individual should control. That doesn’t mean rebel and get yourself shot or arrested. There are other ways to go about reclaiming your individual freedom. In fact, the free guide that we send everyone who joins The Daily Bell email list takes you through that process.

Cycles of Tyranny

For a while, China inched towards freedom, realizing that the entire country would be poor unless individuals had some means of personal responsibility to make their own way. Russia too, and the former Soviet states became freer after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.

But people still believe in the idea of democracy, elected leaders, and government by force. And remember, Putin has been elected several times. To outsiders, it is obvious that the elections are rigged. But what about our own elections? And even if elections are fair, politicians still create more powers for the next guy who comes along to win popular support.

So now we reach another bust in the cycle, where despots once again rise to power. Putin in Russia, Xi in China, and Erdogan in Turkey have each solidified their exclusive executive power.

It wasn’t supposed to happen this way. After the Soviet Union’s collapse in 1991, democracy was supposed to be irresistible. While some of us were more skeptical than others, even cynics allowed that freedom seemed to have the upper hand.

The article confuses freedom with democracy. But democracy leads to the same loss of freedom and tyranny. Democracy still involves abandoning self-reliance and handing over control of your life to the government.

The article praises the Constitution as the major difference between tyrannies and democracies.

We need to stop whining and be grateful for the freedoms we enjoy, our countless privileges as Americans and our remarkably effective government. In perilous times such as these, when domestic demagogues cherry-pick the Constitution and even a president displays impatience with our laws, we must put the Constitution above party and personal biases, above all else.

The article seems to want to make the right point about freedom, but it is woefully misguided. Stop whining? There is plenty to improve–and prevent–in this country. The author admits it in his very next sentences. Individual freedom is constantly under threat, and democracy is a very poor method of addressing that problem.

The Bill of Rights has some great words about protecting freedom. But they are still just words. Without a majority standing behind those words, a democracy could just as easily erase them. And in many ways, the protections of the Bill of Rights have been erased.

Freedom is actually even simpler than democracy or the Constitution. Freedom is just the recognition of the most basic building block of society: don’t hurt others.

That is the same as the Golden Rule and the basis of Common Law. And this one basic rule can govern the entirety of human interactions.

That doesn’t mean the lines will always be clear. There will still be disputes about how much defensive force was justified, and what exactly constitutes a violation of another’s rights. There will be differences between regions and people about how serious certain crimes are. And always we will need to be vigilant that the methods of resolving these disputes are fair.

But with tyranny, these issues are truly out of our control. We have no say. We are at the whims of the government.

Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom. It always will be, no matter how free individuals can become.

With large authoritarian governments, you can be vigilant and still powerless. We also need to have individual power in order to act on our vigilance.

And despite rising despots and ever-expanding laws and regulations, it is actually easier than ever to live your life virtually as free as you want.

The first step is refusing to play the victim. No, your freedom is not outside of your control. Download The Daily Bell’s free guide to learn more.

You don’t have to play by the rules of the corrupt politicians, manipulative media, and brainwashed peers.

When you subscribe to The Daily Bell, you also get a free guide:

How to Craft a Two Year Plan to Reclaim 3 Specific Freedoms.

This guide will show you exactly how to plan your next two years to build the free life of your dreams. It’s not as hard as you think…

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  • James HIgginbotham

    and a DEMOCRACY is nothing more THAN MOB RULE.
    and before to much longer WE THE PEOPLE are going to have to DESTROY IT BEFORE IT DESTROYS US AND OUR REPUBLIC.

    • Joelg

      USA is a republic, a representative democracy, not a true democracy as in ancient Greece. That same mob democracy put Socrates to death. No perfect system of government, because people are corrupt (original sin, or whatever) so will be government to varying degrees. Inevitable, necessitating a constant cycle of struggle.

      • Arrow
        • Ed

          No Treason
          The Constitution of No Authority
          by Lysander Spooner

          The Constitution has no inherent authority or obligation. It has no authority or obligation at all, unless as a contract between man and man. And it does not so much as even purport to be a contract between persons now existing. It purports, at most, to be only a contract between persons living eighty years ago. [This essay was written in 1869.] And it can be supposed to have been a contract then only between persons who had already come to years of discretion, so as to be competent to make reasonable and obligatory contracts. Furthermore, we know, historically, that only a small portion even of the people then existing were consulted on the subject, or asked, or permitted to express either their consent or dissent in any formal manner. Those persons, if any, who did give their consent formally, are all dead now. Most of them have been dead forty, fifty, sixty, or seventy years. and the constitution, so far as it was their contract, died with them. They had no natural power or right to make it obligatory upon their children. It is not only plainly impossible, in the nature of things, that they could bind their posterity, but they did not even attempt to bind them. That is to say, the instrument does not purport to be an agreement between any body but “the people” THEN existing; nor does it, either expressly or impliedly, assert any right, power, or disposition, on their part, to bind anybody but themselves. Let us see. Its language is:….See here:

          • Lisa

            I have read that before and its an absurd argument. Just like the people who try to claim this country was not founded and based on Christian principals. What you quote is an obscure, and unpopular OPINION and it sounds ridiculous. Cling to your false notions if you must, but it is unwise to pass this LEGAL B.S. off on true Americans, because, unlike you, we CARE about our country and the principles which founded it. It is only those who are foreign invaders, and those attempting to DESTROY this country, who recite such sorry rhetoric, AS IF it has any value. Try again, friend, because I am not buying Mr.Spooners “legal” opinion which excuses abusing the law of this country, in hopes of promoting the bad behavior that you must believe in, as well. Why dont you take Mr. Spooners ideology to a far flung location more ideal for legal mumbo jumbo, which allows for every degenerate behavior possible. That is not who Americans are.

          • Ed

            It appears that you can’t keep your abstracts separate. Is your definition of “government” any different than your definition of “country”? Does either exist anywhere other than your mind?
            It also appears that you don’t mind seeing people forced in to contracts. Evidently, “might makes right” works for you.
            It appears that you are mind controlled:
            “The cult of the omnipotent state has millions of followers in the united States. Americans of today view their government in the same way as Christians view their God; they worship and adore the state and they render their lives and fortunes to it. Statists believe that their lives — their very being — are a privilege that the state has given to them. They believe that everything they do is — and should be — dependent on the consent of the government.” ~ Jacob Hornberger
            Or maybe you’re a coward:
            “Most people prefer to believe that their leaders are just and fair, even in the face of evidence to the contrary, because once a citizen acknowledges that the government under which he lives is lying and corrupt, the citizen has to choose what he or she will do about it. To take action in the face of corrupt government entails risks of harm to life and loved ones. To choose to do nothing is to surrender one’s self-image of standing for principles. Most people do not have the courage to face that choice. Hence, most propaganda is not designed to fool the critical thinker but only to give moral cowards an excuse not to think at all.” ~ Michael Rivero
            I’m sure that you think that you’re a “good citizen”:
            “And what is a good citizen? Simply one who never says, does or thinks anything that is unusual. Schools are maintained in order to bring this uniformity up to the highest possible point. A school is a hopper into which children are heaved while they are still young and tender; therein they are pressed into certain standard shapes and covered from head to heels with official rubber-stamps.” ~ H.L. Mencken

  • Sol

    Is it possible to be fiscally socialist and socially libertarian? It’s a bit pithy, but I feel like that would be how you’d describe a lot of Native American tribes before European “intervention” and they might be the best, most recent example of a people whose lives approached some semblance of being free. I mean, there are a lot of elements of socialism/communism I disagree with, particularly when it comes to individual freedoms, but I think the shackles most people live with are put there by capitalism. Especially considering the capitalist superpowers are the ones controlling our “democracies” – capitalism/democracy have become so intertwined you can’t really consider one without the other.

    • Joelg

      If you read about Cabeza de Vaca, the early-1500s Spanish New World explorer whose small shipwrecked group was captured by the Native Americans near what is now Corpus Christi, Texas it was hardly a socialist paradise. Cabeza de Vaca’s group ended up as slaves of a Native American tribe that had a tradition of enslaving rival tribes. Which is not to say that other tribes were not more altruistic and helpful to strangers (and look where that got them, it is no longer their land). As to capitalism, the historical record is rife with abuses, but ditto the monarchies, some popes and tyrannical churchmen. Every system with humans involved features some level of corruption and abuse. The only widespread outbreak of real freedom as we know it, is the result of capitalism. Fiscal socialism is analogous to feudalism, with equality in terms of oppression and shared poverty below the ruling elites. Liberterian socialism only exists atop a capitalist base (to pay the bills).

      • Sol

        Well, I’d be inclined to take anything coming from a 16th Century Spaniard with a grain of salt but yes, in South America particularly that sounds plausible. As for capitalist “freedom”, considering a good 50% of North American adults basically work for room and board, the lack of a literal whip and the “freedom” to choose to live on the streets and starve to death instead of working, is about the only thing separating them from being slaves.

        • Joelg

          Cabeza de Vaca started in Florida, and traveled with Native American tribes from areas including what are likely now Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arizona. Very well documented, and subject of a great PBS documentary which got me reading about it. One part is almost like Woodstock, where every 3-4 years the prickly pear cactus come into fruit (Texas, Arizona area) and tribes from a wide area co-exist for 3-4 months and gorge themselves (which is where Cabeza de Vaca got traded by the slave tribe; like in modern day sports, but without the big salary). But am in agreement about being wage slaves, which is not just a capitalist phenomena. Communist Eastern European socialist wage slaves were not a happy lot either, which is why Soviet tanks always rolled in. Only way out is becoming a merchant or capitalist. That is how feudalism was broken, by the merchant/capitalist class, which led to the freedoms now taken for granted. Socialism came later, when capitalist riches were available for organized redistribution (formerly booty, spoils of war).

  • Joelg

    “Tyrants may oppress you. They may lead you into disastrous wars. But they don’t demand that you take personal responsibility, that great burden of democracy. And every tyrant worth his salt provides scapegoats”

    Tyrant sounds like a synonym for Hillary, particularly in the scapegoat arena. Certainly the Trump Electoral College majority rejected “the rules of the corrupt politicians, manipulative media, and brainwashed peers.” I would call that positive.

    • Sol

      The Trump Electoral College majority are a bunch of no-nothing idiots who don’t have an intellectually curious or soul-searching bone in their bodies – they voted for a greedy, brash, loudmouth because he most reminded them of themselves. They talked about rejecting corrupt politicians but they elected an even more corrupt non-politician. If Trump could snap his tiny fingers and make himself Fascist Dictator For Life he would not hesitate. I’m no fan of Hillary either but at least she puts on a show of caring for people; by words and deeds Trump shows he only cares for himself.

      • Joelg

        “I’m no fan of Hillary either but at least she puts on a show of caring for people; by words and deeds Trump shows he only cares for himself.”

        For a “a show of caring for people,” turn on the TV or look to religion not politicians. I’m not a fan of GOP or Democrats, both plenty corrupt. I think crony capitalists at Tesla are doing more to change the world in a positive manner than the GOP or Democrats.

  • Paul X

    Constitutions and “representative government” are just as much a fraud as democracy is.

    Liberty is simply doing what you please. Everyone feels the need to add the proviso that you don’t harm others in the process, but that is pretty obvious anyway.

  • guard4her

    “As they say, democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner.”

    Yes they say that, but it’s wrong. There is actually someone holding a gun on both the wolves and the sheep and telling them to vote or die. Government force distorts everything and forces people to fight with others.

    Roman slaves were forced to fight to the death in the arena. And we’re supposed to then blame the SLAVES for being violent?! Ridiculous.

    Voting is the same thing. There is no way to opt out. You are forced to participate. Others can vote away your property, rights, and life to steal from you or try to protect themselves. You have the choice of abstinence from voting in which case you are robbed freely, or you can vote and try to protect yourself in which case you are robbed slower.

    All governments anywhere, of any kind, regardless or the structure, always end up being nothing more than organized crime in which a few elite psychopaths rob everyone else. This fact alone demonstrates voting means nothing.