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The Free State Project

The Free State Project is a plan to have 20,000 or more liberty-oriented people move to a single state of the United States, with the intent of influencing local politics and policy. The chosen state of the group is New Hampshire, known for its Live Free or Die motto and absence of a state income and sales tax. Inspired by an article published in Neil Smith's online magazine The Libertarian Enterprise, Jason Sorens, a doctorate student at Yale University at the time, argued that the thinly scattered libertarian activism was failing. His conclusion was that it would be necessary for libertarians to geographically concentrate their efforts in order to achieve liberty in our lifetime. As a result, the Free State Project was founded in 2001.

When the FSP surpassed 5,000 members in 2003, a vote was held to choose the state. The ten candidates were Alaska, Delawara, Idaho, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont and Wyoming. These states were chosen because of their low populations, relatively pro-libertarian native cultures, lack of dependence on federal funds, and decent job markets. The voting process used the Condorcet Method to determine which state was most preferable to the most people. New Hampshire had been chosen as the Free State (Wyoming came in second). The vote was certified by the Austin, Texas based ECL-Synchromesh Computing as “fair and unbiased”. As part of the certification process, individual members of the FSP could also view their ballots online so that they could self-verify their vote.

Following the vote, the focus of the FSP shifted toward recruiting another 15,000 members to commit to the move to New Hampshire. Once membership reaches 20,000, all members are supposed to move within five years. There is no obligation to move until and unless 20,000 members are reached, but many members expressed their desire to move before that time. In January 2006 the FSP launched The First 1000, an effort to sign up 1000 people willing to move to New Hampshire by the end of 2008. The purpose of this project is to speed up the migration to New Hampshire and generate additional publicity.

After moving to New Hampshire, members have pledged the following.
We will exert the fullest practical effort toward the creation of a society in which the maximum role of civil government is the protection of life, liberty, and property.
Most plan to work within the political system to reduce the size and scope of government through reductions in taxation and regulation, reforms in state and local law, an end to federal mandates, and a restoration of what they see as constitutional federalism. Others include anarcho-capitalists who oppose taxation altogether. The Free State Project has become a “big-tent” political, social, and cultural movement for “liberty-minded” people. The Free State Project itself is non-partisan and non-political and does not take any stance on issues, but acts only as a “bus” to get these like minded individuals to move to New Hampshire.

Deze voorstelling van Jason Sorens verscheen ook in The Free State en The Journal of Libertarian Studies, alsook op

Meer informatie hierover op

2 Reacties:

At 21:34 Hugo said...

Echt een experiment is het natuurlijk niet, omdat het alleen "winners" aantrekt. Met alleen maar "winners" is een "Free State" oprichten geen probleem. Het wordt pas lastig als je ook de "losers" erbij haalt.

At 10:49 Geert Van Nauwelaerts said...

Een moedig project: zij die nu verhuizen zullen over enkele decennia (heel) misschien als helden worden vereerd, maar kans op mislukking blijft groot. Het vereist een 'leap of faith' en groot respect voor hen die deze 'leap' maken en zoveel op het spel zetten. De meeste zullen noodzakelijkerwijs zich pas aansluiten als het er echt hoopvol uitziet en tot die tijd moeten de dappere 'true believers' het vuile werk opknappen.

En tja, als dit een succes wordt schaffen ze ook de emigratie wetten af. Dan is de weg open voor de Europese libertariers om zich daar te vestigen. Als blijkt dat deze staat enorm rijk word is de kans groot dat anderen staten zich bij deze revolutie zullen voegen.


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