Tom Hodgkinson's Freedom Manifesto is premised on a simple truth: "when you embrace Lady Liberty, life becomes easier, cheaper, and much more fun."
"The Western world has allowed freedom, merriment, and responsibility to be taken from it, from ourselves, and substituted with greed, competition, lonely striving, greyness, debts, McDonald's, and GlaxoSmithKline," Hodgkinson laments. "The comfort age offers many comforts but few freedoms."
But freedom doesn't come free in Hodgkinson's Weltanschauung. To be free from society, one must also cease to care about the things that the average person drives himself stir-crazy about. To take control of one's self, one must not only free themselves from the snares of others, but rather unplug from the system entirely.
These ideas won't get much of an audience with political-types who would rather be "right" than be happy. The true politico can't keep his hands out of the cookie jar. "Let's just tax it." "People should be forced to recycle." "There should be a law." You name the issue, and political busybodies abound on both sides of it to tell us how and what we should think — and the really good ones actually pass those laws.
So, a necessary element of anyone's freedom manifesto must be a divorce from the State's tentacles. Indeed, any freedom manifesto of the Hodgkinson variety requires that one withdraw from the world of politics, as any good anarcho-libertarian must.
This is, coincidentally, the exact reason that political libertarianism never gets anywhere. The small-l libertarian doesn't want to make decisions or laws that bind his fellow man; but anyone who's interested in politics deeply desires to make these decisions and has more than likely sacrificed years of time and energy (let's not forget money) to be in just such a position. Any good politician hopes to increase and consolidate his power. But Libertarians don't seek power; they seek to eliminate it, at least as far as the state is concerned.