December 1st, 2008 1:02 am | by Marc Gallagher | Published in Big Government, Constitution, Free Market, government spending, Harry Browne, History, Individual Responsibility, Libertarianism, Liberty, Maven Commentary, Philosophy, Politics, Ron Paul, Taxes | 2 Responses
Browne ran for President twice on the Libertarian Party ticket, once in 1996 and again in 2000. Sadly, he passed away in 2006 and was paid tribute by Ron Paul. No doubt Harry Browne is looking down on America shaking his head saying, “I told you so.”
His biography on his website describes him perfectly: Harry Browne was an American free-market Libertarian writer and the Libertarian Party’s 1996 & 2000 candidate for President of the United States. He was also a well-known investment advisor for over thirty years, author of “Harry Browne’s Special Report” — a financial newsletter published from 1974-1997, author of 19 books and thousands of articles, Co-founder and Director of Public Policy of the libertarian Downsize DC Foundation, host of two weekly network radio shows — one a political and the other a financial show, host of an ETV (internet-based television) show called “This Week in Liberty with Harry Browne” on the Internet based Free Market News Network, a consultant to the Permanent Portfolio Family of Funds, and a popular inspirational public speaker.
For my money, he had a way of speaking that made you understand libertarian principles better than anyone. Lew Rockwell summed up the essence of Harry Browne’s abilities in an article following Browne’s death.
He was exceptional as a public speaker during the campaigns. No matter whether the topic was taxes, education, states rights, war and foreign policy, or the drug war, he took the right position and explained it in a way that allowed anyone to see his point of view. He changed minds, and stuck to principle the whole time. Harry was not tempted to sell out his message for the sake of more votes. He didn’t trim or compromise. His energies were spent trying to think of ways to make the core message more marketable and understandable.
Below are a few quotes from Harry Browne
“I am running for president because it is obvious that no Democrat or Republican is ever going to stop the relentless growth of the federal government. …only a Libertarian is going to set you free.”
“The government’s War on Poverty has transformed poverty from a short-term misfortune into a career choice.”
“The Bill of Rights is a literal and absolute document. The First Amendment doesn’t say you have a right to speak out unless the government has a ‘compelling interest’ in censoring the Internet. The Second Amendment doesn’t say you have the right to keep and bear arms until some madman plants a bomb. The Fourth Amendment doesn’t say you have the right to be secure from search and seizure unless some FBI agent thinks you fit the profile of a terrorist. The government has no right to interfere with any of these freedoms under any circumstances.”
And finally a quote that encompasses the economic disaster of 2008/2009:
“The free market punishes irresponsibility. Government rewards it.”
Amen Harry. We miss you, but your message carries on.