Monday, November 17, 2014

The Berlin Wall and the Spirit of Freedom

Richard Ebeling emails:

Dear Bob,

I have a new article on the news and commentary website, “EpicTimes,” on “The Berlin Wall and the Spirit of Freedom.”

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9, 1989. The most graphic symbol of communist tyranny and inhumanity in Europe came tumbling down as the Soviet-created East German government crumbled.

Built in 1961 under the orders of the Soviet masters in Moscow, the Berlin Wall was meant to keep out “subversive” Western, capitalist influences in East Germany, and to lock behind the “Iron Curtain” the human capital the communist regime wished to exploit for the utopian purposes of the “workers’ paradise.”

But the desire and love of liberty is, sometimes, too strong to seal behind walls of concrete and barbed wire. During the 28 years of the Wall’s infamous existence, more than 5,000 people managed to escape over, under or through it. Tragically, dozens of others lost their lives attempting their escape from their collectivist prison.

One of the classical liberal triumphs of the 19th century had been the liberation not only of freedom of trade, but also freedom of movement, under the premise that the free individual had a right to travel, live and work wherever his peaceful purposes led him in the pursuit of opportunity, profit, and pleasure.

What the Berlin Wall especially epitomized was the communist premise that the individual was owned, body and soul, by the collective. He lived, worked and moved where dictated by the State.

This has continued to be case in the interventionist-welfare state, under which as the paternalistic provider and protector of the “social good,” the State determines who may leave or enter nation-states, and for what purposes and for how long.

If liberty triumphs in the 21st century one of the ideals that must accompany it is a restoration of the principle of the individual’s right of freedom of movement.


1 comment:

  1. “Central bankers are supposed to be stewards of our currency which is why pronouncements are watched for hints over the course of the economy or when interest rates will change. What is clear, however is that central banks are all about creating money using financial engineering. After five years the world is awash with some $70 trillion, led by the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet that has ballooned to a record $5 trillion which represents a liability for the state. Money is a commodity whose creator is the state. Central bankers also control the money supply, which has grown in importance as the size of government deficits increase. This money has to go somewhere. A major beneficiary of course has been the Wall Street banks who benefited from near zero interest rates allowing them to take advantage of the “free money”, for arbing, leveraging and placing big bets on the casino-like markets, fueling bond and stock market bubbles. But now with the termination of quantitative easing, markets are worried as to what is next. Volatility is back and bubbles always burst.$2,000.html

    funny, i feel a little owned by the monetary system.