This article was published in the Summer 1995 issue of Formulations
by the Free Nation Foundation
We Huddle for a Purpose
by Richard O. Hammer

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We in the Free Nation Foundation work, as do other libertarian organizations, toward a goal which we call liberty. But our way of working toward that goal differs from the usual ways. So we need to tell, again and again, what we are about. This time I will tell it by imagining the scene in a football huddle. Join me there.

  Our fate in this game looks ominous. While we like to believe that we can win, and while many of our players know the game better than the best of the opposition, one look at our record of losses-to-wins kills any optimism we might feel. We lack coordination. And worse, despite the rules of the game, for every player that we have on the field the bad guys have twenty.

In the huddle one of the new players starts to talk: "Those guys keep breaking the rules and the referees never call it. They are offsides, they interfere illegally with our passes, they have too many players on the field, they move the football from where the referee downs it, they grab our face masks, they ..."

"SHUT UP!" shouts another player in our huddle. Each of us in the huddle already knows all those bad things about the other team and their tactics. We cannot waste these moments, in which we might fix upon a plan, listening yet again to a recitation of the ways they cheat. What are we going to do about it? That is why we gather.

 I am tired of being angry. And realistically I must acknowledge that all my venting of anger at the majority which surrounds us seems not to have advanced the day of our release from statist oppression. Accepting that it may be impossible to get our adversaries to listen to us, I want to try to make something good.

I have looked with sympathy, although with disbelief, upon attempts to start new libertarian nations. What, I have wondered, could I do to make it more likely that in the future one of these attempts might succeed?

We libertarians, I have noticed, share a common complaint, too much government. But we do not share a common vision of what to do about it. Can a vision be built? Can we describe what we want in terms so believable, so tangible, that millions of middle class people will say:

"That's what I want! And I am so sure that it will work, that it will be safe and prosperous, that I will uproot myself, my family, and my possessions, to move there whenever and wherever it happens on Earth." If we can help build a description that good, then the work of the Free Nation Foundation will be done. We can sit back and watch. No force on Earth, I believe, will stop those millions from getting what they want. The millions might even find a way to reconstitute a free nation between these oceans. But the location of the free nation is not the critical issue. What we lack is the vision which unifies millions. Join us. D

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