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8. Brexit and Freedom of Association

The financial markets responded to the recent BREXIT vote with plummeting numbers. BREXIT, of course, refers to Britain’s decision to withdraw from the European Union (EU). With this vote, the majority of Britons expressed a desire to restore their country’s sovereignty, thereby putting an end to this turbulent marriage – a relationship in which distant political elites subjected Great Britain to arbitrary dictates, an untenable immigration policy, and a failing economic regime.

Famed French philosopher Albert Camus said, “The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.” Many Americans sympathize with the plight of pro-BREXIT voters. On this side of the pond, power and wealth steadily accrue to Washington, while Americans swim in a rising sea of red tape, unsustainable debt, wealth-destroying policies, and invasive Big Brotherism.

Thomas Jefferson once wrote, “In questions of power … let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” Today, such chains are threadbare, and the level of state intrusiveness in American society has reached absurdist proportions. The ever-growing list of ‘crimes’ in the US now includes such innocuous activities as the collection of rainwater, going “off grid,” camping on your own property, and engaging in a host of peaceful, voluntary activities. In the former “Land of the Free,” no facet of life is beyond the reach of state control and intervention.

When someone decides a relationship is unrewarding or even toxic, they should be free to withdraw peacefully. BREXIT voters have elected to end such a relationship, and we simply hope they might extend the same courtesy to Ireland or Scotland, should such circumstances once again present themselves. But for now, we simply toast the vital principle of freedom of association, and we wish Great Britain a free and prosperous future.

 



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