Today’s prompt from the Daily Post…
Have you got a code you live by? What are the principles or set of values you actively apply in your life?
I don’t usually think too deep about that kind of thing. But after I thought about it again, in response to the prompt today, I realize that yes, I really DO have a code I live by.
That code is simple:
LIVE AND LET LIVE
I’ve always thought that philosophy would make the world a MUCH better place if more people would live that way.
I thought when I was growing up I was alone in my thought processes. For so long, it seemed that everyone else around always thought for some strange reason that someone else (god, family, state, etc.) had some sort of ‘right’ to dictate how others should live their lives.
It was very encouraging for me to learn a few years ago that there are actually a lot of other people who think the way I do. Who believe in the philosophy of liberty and value freedom for all (actually, Americas’ founding fathers thought the same way and tried hard to form a government that would protect our rights to live this way- too bad their vision has been totally destroyed in only 200 years).
I only found out about the libertarians when my local Texas congressman Ron Paul was running for President as a Libertarian. It was SO nice to find that there were other people I could talk to who actually agreed with me. 🙂
(On most things- or at least the basic principles. Of course, if you’ve ever been in a room full of libertarians, you’d never believe that since we can argue for hours over the minute details of some proposal.)
But, the BASIC principals are not really an issue.
Self ownership: YOU own your life! No one else!
Everything else comes out of that most basic principle. Things like personal responsibility, honesty and respect for others. Everything comes together in a very sensible, ethical way for people in society to live. Each person is free to chose how to live their own lives in the best way possible for them (live according to their own values), taking into consideration their personal circumstances, and remember that they’re free to do whatever they choose as long as they don’t hurt anyone else while doing it (and, that they’re responsible for their own choices/actions!). That brings up a biggie.
There is also the non-aggression principle. Here is a good explanation of that by Dr. Mary Ruwart…
QUESTION: What is the libertarian “non-aggression principle” (or “non-aggression axiom”)?
MY SHORT ANSWER: Libertarianism is based on a single ideal, the non-aggression principle, so libertarian rhetoric tends to be remarkably consistent.
Libertarians oppose the initiation of force to achieve social or political goals. They reject “first-strike” force, fraud or theft against others; they only use force in self-defense. Those who violate this “non-aggression principle” are expected to make their victims whole as much as possible.
This “Good Neighbor Policy” is what most of us were taught as children. We were told not to lie, cheat, steal, not to strike our playmates unless they hit us first. If we broke a friend’s toy, we were expected to replace it.
Most of us still practice what we learned as children with other individuals, but we have grown accustomed to letting government aggress against others when we think we benefit. Consequently, our world is full of poverty and strife, instead of the harmony and abundance that freedom (i.e., freedom from aggression) brings.
Simply put, libertarians take the non-aggression principle that most people implicitly follow in their interactions with other individuals, and apply it to group actions, including government actions, as well.
You might have heard the Libertarian Party (LP) referred to as the “Party of Principle.” This is because the LP bases its programs and policy positions on the non-aggression principle.
Yeah, I really DO believe in these principles and yes, I do live by them.
If I haven’t gone too far off the deep end for you, and you’re interested in learning more, try taking the quiz (that’s why I keep it as a sticky first post on my blog). Check out the links in this post, or try the Advocates for Self-Government or the International Society for Individual Liberty, they’re both full of good information and more links to other resources for the liberty movement around the world.
Have you ever heard of libertarians before? Do you agree with these principles? If you don’t mind me asking, why or why not?
(Yes, I am hoping to start a discussion here). 🙂