Friday, July 30, 2004

Some replies to "Thoughts on Courage" (revised)

After posting the "Courage" piece, I got dozens of responses. While most were positive, a couple asked some really good questions. For the benefit of everyone, I will post a few of the replies. One asks excellent questions, and the others answer the questions far better than I might have. - FT

Reply 1: I hope it works for you, but I think that the people of Wyoming and Montana still have SS numbers and pay income tax. They still get marriage and driver's licenses and all the rest of the crap. I don't remember seeing anywhere that the enviro wackos have left those two states out of their bio-whatever plans or that the endangered species or any of the other insane laws like that don't apply to Wyoming, etc.

I'm not trying to put you down or denigrate what you are trying to do, but I'd like a little more detail. Just exactly what is different and what is more free there than other places? If you really want people, especially those with families, to risk everything they have to move there, it seems they need a little more detail to base it on. They will also be quite free to freeze or starve to death because they can't make a living there. I'd like to see that addressed. It takes more than just "courage" to do something like that. It takes facts, careful planning and preparation - some other vital parts of living free.

I have not seen anything yet to convince me moving anywhere is a good idea. I'd really like to have some articles honestly exploring some of these questions, with some real meat details along with the emotional "courage" stuff. Boston has made a pretty good start. Anybody else want to take a stab at it?
xxxxxx (name withheld until I get permission)

Reply 2: Montana and Wyoming are not yet shining beacons on a hill, but some of us think it is worth making an effort to have some places where we can concentrate effectively and not only shore up what freedom may still exist in these states, but through force of numbers, reverse the tide. These states are being promoted because they have small indigenous populations which have a relatively high degree of predisposition toward freedom. They share characteristics in common with rural areas throughout the West, the Ozarks, the South, and to some extent, the Midwest. But because Montana and Wyoming lack the really big cities found in other states, the rural influences still predominate.

I would not claim that a move to these states is going to be easy. Indeed, it may be difficult, depending on your circumstances. The economy is not great here, nor the wage levels. Some areas have really low housing prices (and poor job prospects), and others have housing prices which approach the national norm, coupled with lower than average wages. As xxxxx xxxxx said in an essay regarding Montana, Bring Guns and Money. If you have any options regarding working out of your home, or using the internet in the course of your work, there are many opportunities in Montana (and I'm sure Wyoming as well) to acquire property cheaply and make a go of it. Some professions are in demand, such as teachers and nurses and doctors, in rural areas, but don't expect to get rich.

____, many of your questions regarding specifics have been researched in some detail, and are postedat .

xxxxx (name withheld until I get permission)

Reply 3: *Hi, Beautiful,
I love your attitude, but I'm afraid I've got to confess that I live in
Montana and I do not use the SSN, do not pay the Federal Income tax, do not
register my guns with any government anywhere, do not use the "marriage
license", do not use a driver's license, do not use a bank account, do not
use a credit card, do not own any property, and do not do a number of lesser
annoying practices common to current American society.

Perhaps I'm just a very lucky dude, but I moved to Montana three years ago and
have found the general levels of freedom here to be far superior to any
states excepting Alaska and Wyoming. Plus, I've found good neighbors here
like xxxxxxx, xxxxxx, and xxxxxxx and xxxxxxx, and etc
and etc. I've also found that a dude like me, who flunked out of college long
ago, can survive nicely in Montana if he is willing to use his hands and his
head. Maybe everything comes down to that "courage" which Fran's essay
illustrates. I moved here on courage. I did not know if I could survive in
Montana when I arrived here three years ago. I just knew that I could no
longer put up with life-as-usual back east and down south, so I hit the road
with my stuff and have found that life is wonderful here for me. Courage
sometimes works! :)

Xxxxxxx has spoken eloquently of Montanan and Wyomingian (is that a
word?) cultural mores and morays, and I assure you that xxxxx has spoken the
truth on that matter. Boston is operating on very sound intelligence, and I
have faith in his vision, his ability to be a libertarian-styled leader, and
his instincts regarding liberty. The people I personally know who are moving
there are strong liberty people, and they're smart to boot. (My hope is that
Boston will continue to resist all the "needs" to "organize" the movement,

Anyway, xxxxx, I'm one person in Montana, whom you know personally and have
met more than once, who does not do any of those things you've listed above.
If my good neighbors up here do use the licenses and SSNs and pay the taxes,
it's only because me'n xxxxxx and xxxxx ain't got around to convertin' all
of 'em yet, hehehe. But we're workin' on it. :)

Elias (name used without's a jumble)

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