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Personal freedom for humanity is my pursuit. A world with free-people thinking, speaking, creating, producing, competing and exchanging ideas advances the world of commerce, science and art. Personal freedom includes personal responsibility and respect for the freedom of all people.
A retired Oregon judge, I was a member of the Peace Corps in Guatemala and Liberia, West Africa. Having lived in Europe, Africa, and South America, I currently reside in Klamath Falls, Oregon and am Executive Director of the American Institute for Full Employment. Originally, the primary focus of our organization was to provide work to people needing welfare, food stamps and unemployment benefits. Through our initiatives, our organization was heavily involved in the 1996 welfare-reform legislation and state reform initiatives.
My experience as a judge and interacting with hundreds of legislators and bureaucrats in federal, state and local governments has convinced me that the vast majority of government programs are poorly promulgated and incompetently managed. Bluntly, government is an institution of coercive power, controlled by power seeking politicians, corrupted by special-interest favoritism and focused on the next election. Harmfully, government is a self-serving institution, producing inadequately-reasoned policies, which are incompetently managed. Alas, I have equal disdain for both political parties. I respect few politicians.
So far in the history of the world, personal freedom prevailed when governmental systems provided predictable, universal and consistent rules of law, which protected personal freedom and the rewards of a person’s labor and intellect – their rightfully gained property.
Philosophically and practically, I am of the opinion that the coercive power of government is best controlled locally where all citizens have a more direct voice. Citizens would have greater opportunities to escape to a jurisdiction with policies and procedures in accordance with a person’s philosophy and wants.
If gigantic reformation could be instituted immediately, I would advocate empowering local communities with social and policing responsibilities and would grant them corresponding taxing powers. Federal government would be limited to the enumerated powers of the Constitution - mainly national defense and assuring free commerce among the states. The taxing and borrowing powers of the federal government would be limited to the enumerate duties.
Alas, gigantic reformation will not be immediate. However, substantial change can occur. The age of instant and extensive communication will cause significant change and the American system of governance will change. How? When? What form? All cannot be predicted but significant change will occur.