Make The Pledge

It is important from time to time to stop and re-examine what exactly it is that we truly believe. A principled libertarian, as a result of certain core principles, takes a free market, private property, antiwar position towards society. However, there are always certain gray areas in which it can be difficult to discern the correct way to proceed. Therefore, it is helpful to make a pledge regarding specific actions that he or she will avoid in all situations.

A promise to oneself can be a very fulfilling undertaking, as long as one keeps the promise. Taking a solemn oath to avoid certain actions which one knows with all their heart to be immoral can give us direction and make us more successful people.

In our case, what would such an oath entail? It must surely include a commitment to avoiding all forms of coercion. That includes voluntarily participating in any activities that involve taking property from people against their will. If we are to be completely consistent, this will force us to abandon any benefits that may be realized by using government services.

In the year 1979, eminent economist Hans F. Sennholz, in his beautiful little book Age of Inflation, provided us with eight commandments that we would do well to follow if we are to be faithful stewards of liberty and human progress in our times.

I hope that you will take the time to consider following these guidelines. For when we choose to conform to certain unbendable principles, our lives become much more meaningful and our goals more attainable.

Without further ado, I give to you the pledge:

1. No matter how the transfer state may victimize me, I shall seek no transfer payments, nor accept any.

2. I shall seek no government grants, loans, or other redistributive favors, nor accept any.

3. I shall seek no government orders on behalf of redistribution, nor accept any.

4. I shall seek no employment in the government apparatus of redistribution, nor accept any.

5. I shall seek no favors from the regulatory agencies of government, nor accept any.

6. I shall seek no protection from tariff barriers or any other institutional restrictions on trade and commerce.

7. I shall seek no services from, nor lend support to, institutions that are creatures of redistribution.

8. I shall seek no support from, nor give support to, associations that advocate or practice coercion and restraint.

My hope is that all those who favor human civilization and the advancement of mankind will take this pledge. This pledge means that each and every one of us will be responsible not only for taking care of ourselves but also for never infringing upon the liberties of our fellow man.

Of course, just because we refuse to participate in government action does not mean that we shouldn’t do everything that we can to help those that are less fortunate. In fact I propose here that it is our sacred duty to always have an empathetic heart, and to take action based upon our principles instead of simply speaking empty and meaningless words.

If you take the oath, I salute you. We are brothers and sisters in liberty. Do not waver and always take assurance in the knowledge that there are others doing the same.

Adam Pearson

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