I hope that it's clear that Doing Freedom! is intended to be helpful to any individual, wherever he might be, in his pursuit of greater freedom. While some of our articles focus on issues more from an American perspective, our goal is to provide something of value in each article for everyone. It seems that readers are recognizing our goal, based on a quick look at where traffic comes from. Although not surprisingly, the bulk of our readership is in the United States (with Canada second), we get traffic from some really unusual places. Here's a partial list of countries represented in our readership: Argentina; Australia; Belize; Bosnia & Herzegovina; Brazil; Britain; Colombia; Costa Rica; Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark; Estonia; Finland; France; Germany; Greece; Hungary; India; Iran; Ireland; Israel; Italy; Japan; Malaysia; Malta; Mexico; Nepal; Netherlands; New Zealand; Norway; Philippines; Poland; Portugal; Russian Federation; Saudi Arabia; Singapore; Slovak Republic; South Africa; Spain; Sri Lanka; Sweden; Switzerland; Thailand; Trinidad & Tobago; Turkey; Uruguay; and Yugoslavia.
Whew! That's a diverse list. One might start to wonder how our little 'zine can expect to deliver practical, pro-freedom activities for all those places.
Fortunately, we don't really have to. Sure, it would be nice to offer advice tailor-made to every country we can--and if you have specific pro-freedom information for your country, you're welcome to write an article and send it to us for possible publication--but we don't have the budget to do that... yet. The best thing to do until we get there is to use the power of the Internet to share ideas and resources, so that interested individuals can use someone else's good ideas, or build on or modify them to suit local needs.
This article is offered as a bare-bones starting point for creating more freedom worldwide. Most of the ideas are for "monkey-wrenching" of some kind, or are educational and outreach. Please consider them a starting point for your own ideas, and use the "comment" feature at the bottom of the page to contribute them. By sharing them in this central location, we can create a database of ideas and feedback on how they work in various locations, in order to get the best use out of each idea.
One inexpensive, fun way to get the masses to think about issues in a more pro-freedom way is to create literature or art that conveys a point quickly. These can be as small as one- or two-line statements or questions printed on adhesive labels for quick, unobtrusive posting any number of places, or as large as a full-page ad in a newspaper... or even bigger. How about some large-scale sidewalk messages in city parks? Some messages that will catch the eye and get people to thinking include: "US=USSR"; "Don't vote--it just encourages them"; "Taxation is theft"; and "We were safer when citizens had guns and bobbies had clubs!". The idea is to make them short and to the point, but also amusing if possible. The messages are then scattered around in public places--wherever something can be posted anonymously and will likely be read. Good places for posting include the restrooms of public buildings, laundromats, college campuses, government buildings, backs of public transportation seats, public bulletin boards in shopping centers, and so forth.
Consider what the current hot topics are in your country, and devise your messages and their target locations to skewer the rulers and their silly laws to maximum advantage. While it can be fun to poke at a specific person, that can leave one open to suit if you are caught at this activity, and it also doesn't really encourage others to think beyond the immediate source of frustration to the larger issues. And do be cautious about posting your messages! Camera and other surveillance is becoming very common in the United States and other so-called advanced countries; you could be caught on film and not even know it. If that's a possibility, try to disguise yourself in some way. In other countries, where the surveillance is not so high-tech, it might be worth it to have others along to create a distraction to lure guards or attendants away, so that your handiwork can be posted relatively safely.
A wonderfully clever variation on this is to give the message its own traveling papers, so to speak. This is done by putting it on money. As the paper money changes hands, your message gets seen by lots of individuals. For an excellent primer on this approach, see the short essay on Liberty Bucks on Claire Wolfe's web site.
Speaking of Claire Wolfe, her book titled 101 Things to do 'Til the Revolution offers a great variety of suggestions, ranging from things suitable for the meek to bold, decisive actions. If you don't have or can't afford to buy her book, looking at its table of contents should be enough to give you some ideas (but really, do buy the book if you can; it's a rich source of ideas). Some are fairly specific to the US, but many can be adapted to suit the needs of sovereign individuals worldwide--have fun with them! She follows up with Don't Shoot the Bastards (Yet)--also a great one to purchase, or, view the table of contents for an overview of what you're missing.
If more hard-core activism is your style, take some cues from Bureaucrash.com. It's designed to be used on college campuses for pro-freedom activism, but the idea can be adopted for use anywhere. The University of Chicago Bureaucrash chapter has some especially good resources and ideas. For other suggestions of activist opportunities worldwide, see Free-Market.Net's web site. They have an entire section devoted to "action opportunities" that range from signing petitions to participating in protest activities.
Here's a clever idea for those interested in countering bad ideas head-on: monitor the local papers for demonstrations and other activities of anti-freedom groups, and stage a counter-demonstration. For example, in the United States the "Million Moms March" is a popular anti-gun activity. Imagine their surprise if some informed, polite, pro-RKBA individuals decided to "infiltrate" their activity! This type of activity is not for the faint of heart, nor should it be used in situations where violence is likely to result. It can be used to good effect, however--not so much with the group you're infiltrating, but with passersby, who might not have otherwise given the protest or demonstration a second thought.
Monkey-wrenching--messing with the machinery of the state directly--can take many forms, depending upon a person's comfort level and the machinery to be messed with. Sometimes simply complying completely with the letter of a law is enough to cause problems for the thought police. More often, it'll take a little more creativity to safely pull this off. Plinky the Elder has assembled a nice list of suggestions in his article Using the State for Fun and Profit. Similarly, Tom Spooner offers many terrific suggestions in his piece Random Acts of Sovereignty.
We see evidence that individuals around the globe are tiring of the intrusion and coercion of the state. That's a trend well worth continuing. Each individual can do that, either through small steps or large ones. Here's to Doing Freedom worldwide!
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