April Freeman Banner 2014


The Non-System


I’m a firm believer in the notion that all that society owes any man is the right to do as he pleases  —to work, not to work, to provide a service, to dream, or to create  —so long as he doesn’t interfere with another man’s right to do likewise. If I want to do an honest day’s work to support my family, I should be free to do so. If I don’t want to work, then I shouldn’t bother others who want to, nor should I expect that they owe me part of their earnings.

Man is a needy being. If I feel that I can provide one of these needs, then let me do so. Galileo was troubled that the time for the swing of a chandelier was the same for a long swing and a short swing. Others in the same church saw the same thing. Only he dreamt and created. Left to do so without outside interference, most men will create, even if only to provide minimum sustenance.

And all the while, where is the system? We need none. Indeed, we have few systems in our society that are doing for man. Producers seem to get by despite systems and plans, however well-inten­tioned, that for the most part im­pede free enterprise. We have sys­tems, systems that watch systems, and systems that overlap. We have planners, planners that watch planners, and plans that overlap.

Give me a chance to act with­out roadblocks, because in the process of trying to eke out a liv­ing—a single working man or a corporation—I’m preoccupied with obstacles. Let’s not make others live as we do, but rely instead on mutual trust and respect. We can very well take care of ourselves if not over systematized by others.


November 1969

comments powered by Disqus


* indicates required
Sign me up for...


April 2014

Around the world, people are struggling to throw off authoritarianism, with deeply mixed results. From Egypt to Venezuela, determined people build networks to overthrow their regimes, but as yet we have not learned to live without Leviathan. In this issue, Michael Malice and Gary Dudney discuss their glimpses inside totalitarian regimes, while Sarah Skwire and Michael Nolan look at how totalitarian regimes grind down the individual--and how individuals fight back. Plus, Jeffrey Tucker identifies a strain in libertarianism that, left unchecked, could reduce even our vibrant movement to something that is analogous to the grim aesthetic of architectural brutalism. The struggle for our lives and freedom is a struggle for beauty; it begins inside each of us.
Download Free PDF