Sunday, March 05, 2006

We Believe In You

In still finding it very difficult to organize my thoughts and feelings about the passing of Harry Browne. As I go back and review his various articles, speeches and interviews, I am overwhelmed by the superb way the man communicated, and I am reminded why I was persuaded to become a libertarian. The following is the beginning of the first speech I saw Harry Browne give - his acceptance speech for the nomination for President at the 2000 Libertarian Party Convention. I would encourage everyone to read the entire speech, or even better, watch the clip that's archived on his website. Links are below.

***

We Believe in You

This is a happy day for me. Aside from the day that Pamela gave me her hand in marriage, this is probably the proudest day of my life. I thank you and I am honored by your nomination.

And I will end the suspense right now. Yes, I do accept your nomination for President.

I am running for President because it is obvious that no Democrat or Republican is ever going to stop the relentless growth of the federal government.

Only a Libertarian will free you from the income tax.

Only a Libertarian will unlock the door and let you out of Social Security.

Only a Libertarian will end the insane War on Drugs.

Only a Libertarian will end the reckless foreign policy that puts your children at risk of fighting and dying in a foreign war, and that makes your city a target for terrorists.

Only a Libertarian is going to return us to constitutional government.

Only a Libertarian is going to set you free.

Who Are the Libertarians?

Who are we? Who are these Libertarians you've been watching on television — these Libertarians who presume to challenge the Republicans and Democrats?

We could explain ourselves in terms of philosophy, economics, morality, or in other ways. But it's really very simple:

We are the people who want you to be free — free to live your life as you want to live it, not as Al Gore or George Bush thinks is best for you.

We want you to be free to raise your children by your values, not the values of some bureaucrat who's trying to create a Brave New World.

We want you to be able to keep every dollar you earn — to spend it, save it, give it away as you think best, not as the politicians will allow you to do.

We Believe in You

As this election season continues, you're going to see Al Gore, George Bush, Pat Buchanan, and Ralph Nader talking about the issues — the issues of the environment, education, health care, foreign policy, foreign trade, jobs, and many other things.

But in reality they're talking about only one question. What they're discussing is simply this:

Which one of them is best qualified to run your life?

Which one of them should decide exactly what kind of school your children should attend — and every other child in America should attend as well?

Which one knows best how your doctor should treat you — or what you should encounter when you enter a hospital?

Which one is best able to run your life?

Do you know what makes Libertarians different? Now this is going to be an earth-shaking discovery — a revelation, perhaps — but we think you should run your life.

In short, we believe in you.

We believe you are a responsible individual — that you can take care of yourself, that you know what is best for your children, that you know how to care for yourself and your family. We believe you know how to live your life.

Even as you make mistakes, you'll find your way through life a lot better than Al Gore or George Bush can lead you — or Bill Clinton or Newt Gingrich or Pat Buchanan or Ralph Nader or any of the other politicians who presume to know how you should live your life.

We believe in you.

***
The rest of the speech can be read here.

The video for this speech can be viewed here with Windows Media Player or here with Real Player.

8 Comments:

Blogger Tad Pole said...

LJ,

Thanks to the link to HB's entire speech. It's really too bad he didn't win in 2000, isn't it?

12:14 PM  
Anonymous Libertarian Jason said...

Yeah... I think that was the fist time I ever went to the polls EXCITED about what I was doing. I thought, what would America be like if he had won....

1:21 PM  
Anonymous stranger said...

thanks for posting that. its been a hectic couple of weeks, and this was the first time i was really able to sit down and remember HB.

11:13 PM  
Anonymous Libertarian Jason said...

Yeah... I'm STILL trying to figure out a way to honor the man's passing. I am at such a loss for words, and everytime I try to sit down and write something, I end up trashing everything I come up with. With the way he would write and speak, being so lucid and eloqueny, my writing pales in comparison.

8:41 AM  
Blogger Matt said...

Hey, Jay it's me, little matty! Where's Jack?

12:01 PM  
Anonymous harvardsquare said...

So sad to hear about Harry Browne's passing. Last thing I had heard was that he was wheelchair bound due to some weird neurological condition he had developed. I visited www.harrybrowne.org often while he was active. He was extremely influential on me and served as my first introduction to Libertarianism. Before finding him about 3 years ago on the web, I had only a cursory understanding of what Libertarianism meant.

Harv

3:51 PM  
Blogger Libertarian Jason said...

Harvard...

Yeah, he brought me to a libertarian philosophy as well. You should check out his books and read his campaign speeches. They were amazing...

-LJ

8:45 AM  
Blogger Libertarian Jason said...

Matt -

He stopped by the first post I ever put up, and that was it...

-LJ

8:47 AM  

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