The Free State Project Jumps The Shark – OpEd


The Free State Project has shown promise in seeking to improve respect for liberty in New Hampshire by encouraging thousands of advocates for liberty to move to the state, with movers pursuing endeavors including running for office and engaging in civil disobedience. While that promise persists as movers continue to work for liberty in the state, it appears that in those efforts they may face headwinds emanating from the Free State Project organization itself.

At the Free State Project’s Twitter page, a series of posts appeared on Wednesday calling individuals listed on the Red Alert Politics “30 Under 30” list “liberty activists” and inviting them to attend the Free State Project’s New Hampshire Liberty Forum for free “in honor of” their “hard work.” The 30 Under 30 list is far from a compilation of “liberty activists” as that term would be understood by many longtime Free State Project supporters and movers. Rather, as noted by Red Alert Politics, the list is composed of “young, right-of-center leaders.”

There may be good reasons for inviting the Red Alert Politics 30 Under 30 list members to the Free State Project event and even for offering them free admission, including that there is value in adding some diversity of views at the event or that libertarian views may rub off on the invitees. There are also arguments for the event being better if most of these invited individuals are not present. But, to praise these individuals en masse as “liberty activists” and declare an intention to “honor” them for their “hard work” is inconsistent with what the Free State Project has promoted in the past. This is a warning sign that the Free State Project, at least at its leadership level, has undergone a significant philosophical transition.

This article was published by RonPaul Institute.

One thought on “The Free State Project Jumps The Shark – OpEd

  • December 1, 2018 at 8:59 am

    Red Alert Politics’ own description of its “30 Under 30” award:
    “In particular, we seek to highlight those who champion the principles of liberty, personal freedom, good citizenship, and free enterprise.”
    I’m not sure what the difference is between “liberty” and “personal freedom”, but anyway those are the first two principles of a short list, and liberty is what the FSP is about. “Good citizenship” and “free enterprise” are what ordinary New Hampshire residents would like to see in their new neighbors. “Right-of-center” is ambiguous, given most people’s simplistic one-dimensional political spectrum. The FSP’s volunteer conference organizers want high attendance, and for the FSP to grow it has to reach out to people who haven’t heard about it. You may not like it, and it may even be a mistake, but it’s not “jumping the shark”. I like that expression as much as anybody else, but it can’t be forced. Nice clickbait though, and it might even generate some publicity and attendance, so kudos.


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