Like a religion, we need to win converts

It’s time to be blunt about the state of the freedom movement. We have not been focused on growth. If you believe in freedom, there are three primary metrics of activism: reducing the coercion applied by government or violence in general, empowering people to live in a way that disempowers the state, and winning converts. That’s right, I said it: Like a religion, we need to win converts to the message of freedom. If we actually want to achieve a free society, then we must be ruthless in assessing our efficiency in how we invest resources to the cause.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. A lot of my activism has been sub-optimal in terms of maximizing my own efficiency. Now that our book, FREEDOM! is out, I know that the most effective thing that I can do for the cause is to get people to read this book. We have to reach the people who we will not reach online. We have to put the message in people’s hands. We have to look them in the eyes, connect with them as people, and ask them to consider what freedom really means. We’re also going to be making exciting videos challenging statists everywhere we go.
That’s what The American Campfire Freedom Tour is all about. This is a major turning point for my activism as I plan to be living on the road for the next year in order to promote FREEDOM! This decision is a result of being able to step back and be brutally honest about what I’m doing. Right now, I need your help. We need to order more books! We need to plan a tour! We need volunteers in every state who know where we can light a campfire and draw a crowd! We need suggestions for events where we’ll find receptive audiences. So please, donate to our Indiegogo campaign for the American Campfire Freedom Tour (we have some awesome perks including personal delivery – you can guarantee that your city is on the tour for just $100) and drop me a line at adam@thefreedomline.com if you have any tips for the tour.
This is how we move humanity forward!
Download the book for free here and support the tour here.

The Most Revolutionary Activist in America

by Lucas Jewell

A wise man once said “It’s dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.” and no American knows this more than Adam Kokesh. Throughout history those who have spoken out against the powers at be have been put in great danger, placing more importance on spreading their version of the truth than their own personal wellbeing. Few people have the courage and strength in their soul to stand up, to be David when evil is Goliath, but we call those who do revolutionaries. Adam Kokesh is the most revolutionary activist in the United States today.
First, Adam Kokesh was deployed to Iraq to fight in the war only to come home and become a pioneer in the anti-war movement. Adam deployed to Iraq in 2004 as a reservist in The United State Marine Corps. After teaching himself Arabic with just books and cassette tapes, The Marine Corps thought it would be wise to transfer him to The 3rd Civil Affairs Group. As a part of The 3rd Civil Affairs Group, Kokesh worked as an intermediary between the Iraqi civilians and The United States Military. Having served in the first battle of Fallujah, also known as Operation Vigilant Resolve, Adam came home and had to deal with the morality of what he had done and an ever-present case of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Adam saw the evils and injustices of war and vowed to make a change by participating in anti-war activism. In 2007 Kokesh became active with Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW), and pushed his activism to the limit many times resulting in multiple arrests. Adam along with a dozen other members of IVAW even staged a mock military patrol in Washington D.C. to raise awareness of the United States military occupation abroad. Adam Kokesh has been deployed to fight in a war but after experiences and education he decided to fight for peace which is a truly revolutionary act.

Also, Adam Kokesh has been very active in media on multiple platforms, becoming a self described “Libertarian Propagandist”. In 2011 he worked as a talk radio host in his home state of New Mexico, before being canceled just shortly after being hired. Luckily it wasn’t all bad news for Adam as a major international news station offered him his own show on their channel “RT” with full creative control. Eventually political disputes lead to Kokesh’s RT show being canceled and in response he took it to the streets. Adam logged hard hours covering the Occupy D.C. protests for his YouTube channel, which built him a considerable online following. Capitalizing on the moment Kokesh started an online podcast (internet talk radio show) titled “Adam Vs The Man.”, where he gave his opinion on current issues and how they fit into his libertarian philosophy. His YouTube channel is still active and Adam has recently released a book for free online entitled “FREEDOM!”. Media is used to change the minds of the masses and Adam Kokesh has certainly used this avenue to spread his revolutionary message.

Last of all, Adam Kokesh has coordinated and promoted many events facilitating civil disobedience. One of Adam’s first well publicized coordinated civil disobedience action was in protest of an rule prohibiting dancing near The Thomas Jefferson
Memorial in Washington DC. Jefferson was an avid dancer and the only way Adam could avenge this slap in the face to history was to dance, dance like freedom depended on it. The Jefferson Dance Party was crashed by U.S. Parks Police Officers which lead to Kokesh along with five others being arrested. Adam went on to become a key promoter of a monthly protest called “Smoke Down Prohibition”, in which people would express their disagreement with marijuana laws by smoking marijuana right next to The Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. These protests helped to raise awareness in Philadelphia about the marijuana legalization issue and Philadelphia has since become the largest city in the U.S. to decriminalize marijuana. Kokesh attempted to organize an armed march on The Capital but because of a lack of support, more arrests, and mounting court dates he decided to call off the march. On the morning of July 4th 2013, Adam was filmed loading a shotgun and calling for a “Final American Revolution” in Washington D.C.’s Freedom Plaza (located between The White House and The Capital Building). The Department of Homeland Security responded to Kokesh’s video with a raid that used more men and equipment than that which was required to kill international terrorist Osama Bin Laden. Being civilly disobedient to unjust authority as Adam Kokesh has, is the mark revolutionary.

Overall, Adam Kokesh has and will continue to change the world in a very powerful way. The definition of revolutionary is “a person who works for or engages in political revolution.” and I believe Adam Kokesh’s multi-leveled approach consistent with that definition. Revolution requires the action of revolutionaries when the time is right. I will leave you with a quote from a man who knows a thing or two about revolutions and being a revolutionary, “The revolution is not an apple that falls when it is ripe. You have to make it fall.” – Che Guevara

I’m not going back to jail!

To all my friends, supporters, and lovers of freedom everywhere,

On Friday I had my final sentencing hearing in VA stemming from the video I made last Independence Day and the raid on my home. Since then, my life has taken many interesting twists and turns and it’s been an incredible honor have had so many of you by my side during the challenging times.

Judge Loraine Nordlund heard the case at the plea hearing almost three months ago as well as for this most recent sentencing hearing. She seemed to have completely reversed her attitude since then. As I told The Washington Post reporter who was there covering the hearing, Justiin Jouvenal, when I was in jail, I told every guard I came into contact with, “You’re a free, beautiful, independent human being, and you should never let anyone tell you otherwise.” Of all the virtues of civil disobedience, having a chance to bring the message to those who would never hear it otherwise, is the most satisfying.

I got the feeling from Judge Nordlund that she had spent a good part of her time since the last hearing considering the case, my activism, the political implications of what the Park Police did, if not actually watching a good chunk of our YouTube videos! At times I felt I was talking to a fan! In the end, she sentenced me to three months completely suspended and no probation, which was a pleasant surprise. The last word we got from the prosecutor was that he was going to be seeking a year of actual jail time, but even he seemed to have dramatically backed down Friday. My attorney, Graziella Bianchi did an incredible job and I would recommend her if you ever have criminal issues in Virginia.

I’ve learned a lot from the last year and a half and even matured in ways I didn’t think were possible, most importantly, in my attitude towards activism. I hope you know that we have released the book I began writing in jail, FREEDOM!, which you can get for free in every digital format including audiobook and order in print at our new website: thefreedomline.com. I wrote it to be the ultimate way to share the message in a way that will grow the movement. If we want to achieve a free society, we must be ruthless in our efficiency at changing the way people fundamentally think. I’ve made some adjustments based on this principle, and have a major announcement coming on the 15th I think you’ll like.

Liberated,

Adam

PS Please support our sponsor, Amagi Metals, who has stood by us recently and makes The FREEDOM! Line possible, by going to them for all your precious metals needs. Every time I mention them, I hear rave reviews from fans. amagimetals.com

Marx VS Kokesh

“The Communist Manifesto” (written in 1848 by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels) focuses on the history of class struggles and aims to end wealth gaps as the center of its moral argument. “FREEDOM!” (written in 2014 by Adam Kokesh) focuses on the history of tyranny and its primary moral argument is the principle of self-ownership. Both books claim to support freedom and address the conflict between the oppressors and the oppressed. Both books use well-being, equality, and fairness as selling points, but approach these ideas in vastly different ways. “The Communist Manifesto” looks to government as the Savior and profit motive as the enemy, while “FREEDOM!” points to profit as the reward for service to others based on voluntary exchange, which cannot exist with government.

Neither book explains where their philosophies have been fully implemented, but Marx outlines the direction and steps to follow to his ideological conclusion. Both attempt to convince the reader of the terrible ills of the status quo. They both assert that it is their philosophy that is in the interest of social progress, and they both claim the opposite philosophy leads to the inevitable Ruling Class. Kokesh has more history to work with, and is able to show how Marx has already failed.

While “The Communist Manifesto” stresses the supposed “greater good,” “FREEDOM!” asserts respect for individuals through universal nonviolence. One important distinction is how they answer the question of private property. “The Communist Manifesto” lists its planks as a guideline for all property belonging to the State, under the idea of a united workforce. “FREEDOM!” describes areas that are currently under the control of a centralized government, and shows why government intervention has not only NOT eliminated the problems of a Ruling Class, but made them worse. “FREEDOM!” suggests decentralization as key to restoring and retaining private property, particularly self ownership, from which all other property rights extend, according to Kokesh.

The ideas put forth by Marx have been implemented, even in the United States, and clearly have impeded social progress because they have been used as an excuse for violence by government. Marx even admits his ideology could not be done without violence. It’s time to take a look at things another way, not just with a new ideology, but with principles that supersede ideology. We should unite in the ideals of “FREEDOM!” rather than being united in self-proclaimed peasantry. We should unite on the principles of acquiring property only without force, fraud, and coercion. This is the only way to attain true justice, and is the only way to peace. As Kokesh so aptly stated, “You, as a free, beautiful, independent human being with inalienable rights, own yourself!”

 

-Kim Shady

Live free, be happy

If I see someone who is unhappy, who is doing harmful things to themselves or others, or having negative thought patterns that keep them from being happy, and I come along and say, “Be happy!” and they say, “No! Fuck you! I want to support my government! I want to be angry! I want to be afraid! I want to be resentful!” the worst that can happen is that they will still be unhappy. Nothing worth being unhappy about can be better than listening to someone ask you to be happy and nonviolent. The funny thing is, some people react by blaming me then for their unhappiness, but I can take it. I’m happy to bear the worst lashing out from discontent people and to let them blame everything they feel on me. Give me your angry, your violent, your statist huddled masses and we who are truly free can take their pain and still be happy! Maybe if the miserable victimizers of the world would just stop to listen to those of us who believe in freedom, even if just to hate us, perhaps we could all just get along, at least for a while! So I’m not sorry, but if I see that you’re unhappy because you’re a cop who is stealing from innocent people on behalf of politicians, or a soldier who is killing strangers, or a politician who is a compulsive liar, or a string puller who is obsessed with manipulation and domination, or even just a run-of-the-mill every day malcontent, whatever your political affliction is, I will bug you until you are happy. You’re welcome. Live free.

Gaza Under Siege

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The Gaza Strip is a Palestinian territory on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea that borders Egypt on the southwest and Israel on the east and north. It is roughly 140 square miles and has a population of 1.7 million. Israel enforces restrictions on the movement out of this very crowded camp of Palestinians by using checkpoints, road blocks, barricades, and fences. Passage is rarely allowed.

Israel has also severely limited the fishing zone along the coast to a mere six nautical miles, despite food and water shortages, and lack of electricity.  The people inhabiting the land of Gaza were uprooted and placed there so that Israel could be an all Jewish state. The Palestinians are not allowed to return, and Jews are given financial assistance to immigrate.

Hamas, who governs the Gaza Strip, was created by Israel and funded by the United States to counter their predecessor, the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization). The encouragement from Israel and the United States to radicalize the Muslims, combined with the resentment formed by the occupation, Jewish settlements in Palestinian territories, blockades, and overall lack of human rights for Palestinians, have created blowback from those communities. The number of Palestinian deaths to Israeli deaths is clearly disproportionate, and although Hamas is accused of hiding behind children, a recent video and several eyewitness accounts from International journalists say otherwise. Four Palestinian boys were killed and three other children were wounded after they were targeted by Israel as they played football on a beach.

Immediately following the attack from Israel on the children of Gaza, NBC removed their reporter. CNN did the same. This is not surprising since the Palestinian side of the conflict is rarely covered, and Jews self admittedly control the media.

Israel has now launched a ground offensive into Gaza. Meanwhile, Israelis have gathered for front row viewing of the destruction in the Gaza Strip and are cheering at the bloodbath.

 

-Kim Shady

America Is Not Exceptional

In a prior post, I said that America was founded as a Republic. Although I did believe the distinction needed to be made between a Republic and a Democracy, it was not my intent to imply that a Republic is somehow unique, or that it made America great. A Republic is “a country that is governed by elected representatives and by an elected leader (such as a president) rather than by a king or queen”. Many countries in the world are republics, and are not free.

Constitution is simply “the system of beliefs and laws by which a country, state, or organization is governed” and “a document that describes this system”. Many countries have constitutions, including Iraq under Sharia Law, and they have nothing to do with freedom.

America has never been a free country. Free from King George, perhaps, but never truly free. 1913 was a particularly bad year. The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 created the current central bank system and the 16th Amendment “allowing” the federal government to levy a tax on incomes was ratified.

The United States, with an economic freedom score of 75.5, is the 12th freest economy in the 2014 Index. America has become a police state and some say it is already worse than North Korea. The United States government spends about half of all military spending in the world and gets less safe.

In September 2013, Obama declared, “I believe America is exceptional.” If this is true, then I must ask, exceptional in what way? It sure isn’t in freedom.

-Kim Shady

24-HOUR LIVE FREEDOM! MARATHON

What is freedom? How would you define it? Is it worth fighting for? If you already consider yourself a friend of freedom, do you have enough knowledge to explain it to others?

Adam Kokesh’s new book, “FREEDOM!”, is the ultimate handbook. It is concise and easy to understand. Download it for free at www.adamvstheman.com/freedom!

To comment, ask questions, or to challenge the author, tune in to www.adamvstheman.com/live tomorrow, July 3rd at 9am PT for a special live event! Adam will be taking your calls and talking about FREEDOM! for 24 hours straight!

12 easy things you can do for FREEDOM! right now

1. Share the link to http://adamvstheman.com/freedom on Facebook, Twitter, and anywhere else you have a presence with a good tagline, such as: Don’t be afraid to download this book. If you’re reading this, you’re already on the list.

2. Email/message all of your contacts and ask them to read the book. Tell them why you think it’s important.

3. Read it to someone one section at a time, one section per day.

4. Write a review (with 5 stars of course) on Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KR9V03K and on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/freedom!/id886938945

5. Text message this link to all your phone contacts. Tell them they can start listening to the audiobook on their phones RIGHT NOW! http://adamvstheman.com/freedom

6. Publish your favorite short section as a blog post/facebook note/meme/whatever.

7. Ask everyone in your family to read it. Ask everyone at school to read it. Ask everyone at work to read it.

8. Print your own copy. Leave it somewhere. http://www.adamvstheman.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/FREEDOM-8.5X11-easy-print.pdf

9. Get the FREEDOM! Package, rock a badass shirt. http://adamvstheman.com/gear

10. Read it out loud (with a bullhorn?) somewhere public, like a subway, or on an airplane. (get video)

11. Change your voicemail message to say something about the book. “Please leave your message at the tone, then go read FREEDOM! which can be downloaded for free as an audiobook at adamvstheman.com/freedom.”

12. Add the link and/or the logo (http://adamvstheman.com/freedom) to all of your online profiles and email signatures.

Punishment or Justice?

America would be wise to understand the difference between punishment and justice.” Adam Kokesh, June 12, 2014

In order for justice to be served, there must be a crime. If there is no victim, there is no crime. As stated in a previous post, America – the supposed land of the free – has the highest per capita prison population in the world. Most of these prisoners are incarcerated because of the War on Drugs. Many are now joining them due to the War on Terror, or in the name of “safety”. Today, Americans are being spied on in an effort to control speech. For example, Brandon J. Raub, a Veteran, was arrested solely for his Facebook posts. Dissenting speech or possession of certain items, such as drugs or guns, deem you a criminal in the eyes of the State.

But how do those things alone produce a victim? They don’t. A real crime involves two parties: the offender and the victim. Government is not society; it is a monopoly on force. It is impossible for government to claim property rights on anything. Ayn Rand noted, “‘The common good’ (or ‘the public interest’) is an undefined and undefinable concept: there is no such entity as ‘the tribe’ or ‘the public'; the tribe (or the public or society) is only a number of individual men” and “When ‘the common good’ of a society is regarded as something apart from and superior to the individual good of its members, it means that the good of some men takes precedence over the good of others, with those others consigned to the status of sacrificial animals.”

Who is being served when people are punished by the State for “crimes” without victims? Politicians are, when passing legislation. How the decision makers are chosen in the American criminal justice system is also a political process. Judges and prosecutors often act with their own political ambitions in mind. This results in political demagoguery and the prosecution of perceived political enemies.

The vast majority of criminal cases end with a guilty plea rather than a trial. We have a system of pleas rather than a system of trials. The defendant who goes to trial instead of taking a plea will most likely be harmed by receiving a conviction on more serious charges and the imposition of a more severe sentence. In other words, you are penalized for going to trial. Prosecutors love plea bargains because they are evaluated largely by their conviction rates, and all plea bargains result in convictions. Prosecutors use overcharging to coerce guilty pleas from defendants and deprive them of the procedural safeguards and the full investigation of the trial process.  When overcharging and the trial penalty are combined in the regular practice of plea bargaining, defendants have little choice but to plead guilty, and virtually every act may be disposed of without a trial.

A jury trial provides no guarantee. Jury verdicts are very unpredictable. They are often intolerant and unfair. Counsel is not permitted to present the concept of jury nullification to the jury. In 2011, prosecutors charged Julian P. Heicklen, a retired chemistry professor, with jury tampering because he stood outside the federal courthouse in Manhattan providing information about jury nullification to passers-by. Almost always, the jury will convict a person based on what the government says the law is, and not the law itself.

The Prison Industrial Complex pulled in more than $5 billion in America in 2011. Our epidemic of incarceration costs us taxpayers $63.4 billion a year. There are financial incentives to keep the prisons full, and there are also financial incentives for “humanitarians” with their “healing therapy.”

Locking people in cages and coercing them into plea bargains in order to serve the political elite and the well-connected, especially when the crime has no victim, is not justice, and justice is not the intent of the U.S. system. The American system is designed to make criminals when there are none, and force people to admit to wrongdoing when there is none, while using propaganda such as “public safety” to get away with it, and is centered around punishment rather than justice.

Punishment is an emotional, vindictive, and retaliatory reaction. It doesn’t make the victim whole. Justice is rational, while bringing vindication and closure to the victim. It is determined by the actual victim and not politicians. It does not further victimize the victim by forcing payment for the prison industrial complex through taxation, but instead allows the victim to be compensated through repayment and reparations. Truly dangerous criminals should be forcibly isolated from the rest of us, but when property rights are perverted and moral principles are lost, true justice is rarely served.

 

-Kim Shady

 

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