Which is Better: a King, a Dictator, or a President?
So a King, a Dictator, and a President walk up to the gates of heaven, and St. Peter asks, “Why should I let you in?”
The King says, “I’ve made my people safe.”
The Dictator says, “I’ve made my people equal.”
The President says, “I haven’t done either, but I’ve tricked my people into thinking I have!”
This poses a question: which is better? A King, a Dictator, or a President?
In America, we all know that a President is best. Most people feel that if only the rest of the world would follow America’s lead and become a Republic, or a Democracy, then all would be well.
But look around the world. Most countries are republics. Most countries have democracy. Most countries have presidents, constitutions, and they hold elections. And yet, most countries experience corruption. Elections are rigged, and sometimes presidents are killed. Even in America, corruption is everywhere.
Monarchies and Communist governments aren’t a bed of roses, either. Often times, a bad ruler can stick around forever!
Sometimes people wonder, “Why hasn’t a Libertarian form government been tried before?” As if it’s simply a brand new “special” form of government that no one’s thought of before, with a unique kind of ruler, or voting system.
But, Libertarianism is not a form of government, but a size.
Look around the world, at all the different governments out there, and you’ll find that the most important factor in the liberty of citizens is the size of the government. The smaller the government, the freer the citizens. The form (democratic, republic, monarchy, communist), doesn’t really matter so much. And so, a libertarian government, is any form of small government.
The city of Wenzhou is Communist, yet it is one of the most libertarian societies in the world today. The Chinese government pretty much just ignores Wenzhou, “where the mountains are high, and the emperor is far away.” As a result, they have a free-market system of roads, bridges, and highways – something that it is difficult for us free-minded Americans to imagine. They have the highest wages for workers, and are the second richest city in China.
New Zealand is a Monarchy, yet it could also be considered a libertarian government. They are free-market cheerleaders. Low regulation and low taxation has made starting a business a piece of cake. Gay marriage, prostitution, and drugs are for the most part, legal, and they believe in free speech, and the right to bear arms.
Even Somalia, which has no government at all, could be considered libertarian. After the fall of the bloated communist government in 1991, half a million people flooded into the country to live under anarchy. Ok, maybe they don’t all have iphones yet, but compared to what they had, they are experiencing enormous prosperity. Food, shelter, security, technology, and civil rights are all up, under a stateless society.
The United States Constitution is often considered the most radical libertarian experiment in the history of the world. The document was written to help restrict the power of government, and keep it small. Unfortunately, America’s government has grown to be enormous, but the original idea of a limited government was indeed, libertarian.
Libertarianism exists in small pockets, all over the world. Where ever there is freedom, small government, property rights, and voluntary exchange, that is where libertarianism resides. From the private roads and bridges of Wenzhou, to the zero taxes of the Cayman Islands, to the free-markets of Hong Kong, to the private militia of Switzerland, and even the civil rights outlined in our very own United States Constitution, freedom from government is a familiar friend to lucky individuals around the world. Such miracles can only continue to exist if people are willing to defend their own liberty.
“That government is best which governs least.”