The location in which you find yourself may turn out to be the difference between whether you can fully enjoy your freedom or not. Not the geographical location as such, but the people who occupy that location.

     Unless you are completely self-sufficient, you are required to interact with other people frequently for your needs and wants, or just because you must share some of the same space with them. As a result, the amount and quality of freedom you enjoy is somewhat related to these other people, and how they value or perceive freedom.

     I have found that in an area where people do not value freedom above all else, and even fear freedom for the responsibility it will force them to assume for themselves, it is the people themselves who are my biggest obstacle.

     One would think that the worst of the obstacles would be found in the government or the rules it creates, but it is the people themselves who are the obstacle, just as it is the people themselves who created the government and asked for the rules.

     The people want their government and its rules because they do not want to have to take responsibility for themselves, and I seem to have been perceived as a threat to their status quo by being to live outside of their system. I guess that they realize that if enough like me appear on the scene, their system will collapse.

     As a result, I have been verbally attacked for such things as criticizing the tax codes and pointing out corruption in the system. It is even difficult to convince people to engage in barter, as they frequently see this as a means of evading taxes. If not for these taxes, their precious safety net would disappear. they do not even know that without the taxes to pay for their safety net, they would not need a net.

     Of course, it is not like this everywhere. In some places it is much easier to live the free life, as the people value freedom much more than they do here.

     Why do I stay? At this point, simply because of one person and two dogs, and because I am usually more persistent than I perhaps should be. Still, this place seems to me to be like the Free State Project running in reverse. Every year more people realize how much of their freedom they have lost and leave, or at least move further from the center of corruption.

     I know this sounds depressing, but there is a moral for this story. If you find yourself in an area where a significant number of your neighbors understand and value freedom, stay and do whatever you can to build it up. This may even consist of helping some of them into the local government to keep the corrupt individuals out. It may just mean being friends with those around you.

     Where I am, we used to have much more freedom, but people didn’t stay and help preserve it, so now it is one of the least free places I have ever lived in. Don’t let that happen to your home. Work with your neighbors and expand your freedom locally.