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G. Edward Griffin: The Future is Calling - The Future is Calling Part One PDF Print E-mail
Commentary/Politics - Guest Commentaries
Written by G. Edward Griffin   
Tuesday, 12 May 2009 14:20
INTRODUCTION TO THE CREED OF FREEDOM

There is nothing more common in history than for oppressed people to rise up against
their masters and, at great cost in treasure and blood, throw off the old regime only to
discover that they have replaced it with one that is just as bad or worse. That is because it is
easy to know what we dislike about a political system but not so easy to agree on what
would be better. For most of history, it has been the habit of men to focus on personalities
rather than principles. They have thought that the problem was with the man who rules, not
with the system that sustains him. So, they merely replace one despot for another, thinking
that, somehow, the new one will be more wise and benevolent. Even if the new ruler has
good intentions, he may be corrupted by the temptations of power; and, in those rare cases
where he is not, he eventually is replaced by another who is not as self-restrained. As long
as the system allows it, it is just a matter of time before a new despot will rise to power. To
prevent that from happening, it is necessary to focus on the system itself, not on
personalities. To do that, it is just as important to know what we are for as it is to know what
we are against.
Even today, with so much talk about fighting to defend freedom, who can stand up
and define what that means? For some, freedom means merely not being in jail. Who can
define the essence of personal liberty? Who can look you in the eye and say: “This I believe,
and I believe it for this reason and this reason and this reason also.” The world is dying for
something to believe in, a statement of principles that leaves no room for misunderstanding;
a creed that everyone of good faith toward their fellow human beings can accept with clarity
of mind and strength of resolve. There is an old saying that if you don't stand for something,
you'll fall for anything. The Creed of Freedom that you are about to read is the rock-solid
ground that will allow us to stand firm against all the political nostrums of our day, and
those in the future as well. 
The Creed of Freedom expresses the core ideology that binds the members of
Freedom Force together. This is not like the platform of a political party that typically is a
position statement on a long list of specific issues and which changes from year to year to
accommodate the shifting winds of popular opinion. Instead, it is stated in terms of broad
principles that do not change over time and that are not focused on specific issues at all. If
these principles are followed, then most of the vexing political and social issues of the day
can be quickly resolved in confidence that the resulting action will be consistent with justice
and freedom. 
Although I have authored the Creed, I cannot claim credit for it. Anyone familiar
with the classical treatises on freedom will recognize that most of its concepts have been
taken from the great thinkers and writers of the past. My role has been merely to read the
literature, identify the concepts, organize them into logical sequence, and condense them
into a single page.

THE CREED OF FREEDOM

INTRINSIC NATURE OF RIGHTS
I believe that only individuals have rights, not the collective group; that these rights
are intrinsic to each individual, not granted by the state; for if the state has the power to
grant them, it also has the power to deny them, and that is incompatible with personal
liberty.
I believe that a just state derives its power solely from its citizens. Therefore, the
state must never presume to do anything beyond what individual citizens also have the right
to do. Otherwise, the state is a power unto itself and becomes the master instead of the
servant of society. 
SUPREMACY OF THE INDIVIDUAL
I believe that one of the greatest threats to freedom is to allow any group, no matter
its numeric superiority, to deny the rights of the minority; and that one of the primary
functions of a just state is to protect each individual from the greed and passion of the
majority. 
FREEDOM OF CHOICE
I believe that desirable social and economic objectives are better achieved by
voluntary action than by coercion of law. I believe that social tranquility and brotherhood
are better achieved by tolerance, persuasion, and the power of good example than by
coercion of law. I believe that those in need are better served by charity, which is the giving
of one's own money, than by welfare, which is the giving of other people's money through
coercion of law. 
EQUALITY UNDER LAW
I believe that all citizens should be equal under law, regardless of their national
origin, race, religion, gender, education, economic status, life style, or political opinion.
Likewise, no class should be given preferential treatment, regardless of the merit or
popularity of its cause. To favor one class over another is not equality under law. 
PROPER ROLE OF THE STATE
I believe that the proper role of the state is negative, not positive; defensive, not
aggressive. It is to protect, not to provide; for if the state is granted the power to provide for
some, it must also be able to take from others, and once that power is granted, there are
those who will seek it for their advantage. It always leads to legalized plunder and loss of
freedom. If the state is powerful enough to give us everything we want, it is also powerful
enough to take from us everything we have. Therefore, the proper function of the state is to
protect the lives, liberty, and property of its citizens; nothing more. That state is best which
governs least.