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The Fate Of The Future

Happy New Year!

I kicked off my new year  working on a bill in my home state of Utah that will help protect people’s DNA from mass searches by law enforcement. It got me reflecting on the serious and sometimes heavy nature of most of the work that I do.

But then I got to thinking about all the good and exciting things that are going to happen in this new year and this new decade, and I was reminded how much the world has continued to improve and be made prosperous since the emergence of the market economy. For example, this article sets the stage:

Rather than poverty versus plenty separating “the many” from the “the few,” over the last two hundred years the distinction has increasingly been reduced to degrees of wealth, comfort, and luxuries among people in society. This has been the cumulative outcome of the competitive process within the market economy. The horn-of-plenty produced by private enterprise provides a vast and growing variety of goods and services available to all, a great equalization in the quality and standard of living.

Studies continue to show that the world is only improving and that capitalism has lifted more people out of poverty than anything else. And that’s something to be really excited about! The more we can educate about the dangers of big government and the importance of protecting individual rights, the better people’s lives are going to continue to get. Freer people participate in freer markets which increases prosperity.

I was thinking about The Tuttle Twins and the Fate of the Future and how we are all responsible for shaping our personal futures, but also the futures of our neighborhoods, communities, countries, and, by extension, the world. The task can seem overwhelming, but I don’t think it actually has to be.

Last year, my friend Lawrence Reed penned some Modest Proposals for the New Year that I thought I’d share:

  1. To criticize less and encourage more. A kind word usually goes much further than a harsh or hasty judgment. We could all get by with less negativity.

  2. To count our own blessings, not the other guy’s, and do it regularly. Studies show that cultivating a grateful spirit improves both your mental and physical health.

  3. To improve our personal character—our truthfulness, patience, courage, honesty, responsibility, self-reliance, and introspection—before we set out to reform the world. If everybody did this, the world would by definition be reformed.

  4. To clean up our language, especially in front of youngsters. Foul language, ever more common and public these days, sets a lousy standard.

  5. To help others who need and deserve it by personally pitching in or by supporting private organizations that do the job well (like The Salvation Army). You’ll likely accomplish more good than by passing the buck and just voting for politicians who say they’ll do it with other people’s money.

  6. To read one or more good biographies of people who were (or still are) excellent examples of the virtuous life. Inspire yourself by learning of their accomplishments. Email me if you’d like a list of some especially good ones.

  7. To go out of our way to show kindness to a pet. Also, teach your children about the importance of kindness to animals. It’s a great start on the way to respecting all life, including that of our fellow humans.

  8. To smile. A lot. A lot more than comedian W. C. Fields once advised when he said, “Start every day with a smile and get it over with.”

  9. To beautify something that otherwise gets ignored. Examples: buff the sidewalk in front of our homes; pick up some litter on our streets; replace that unsightly, aged mulch, or paint the faded siding on our houses.

  10. To get to know our neighbors better. How many of us don’t actually know the folks who live two or three doors away? Go say hello.

  11. Commit now to acquainting at least one person a month with the philosophy of liberty. Choose people you have reason to believe have not heard the message before. Put careful thought into encouraging them to read an article or two, a book, or come to a FEE event. This is how we win the future—as missionaries for liberty, not cloistered monks, as I explained in this article.

This list inspires me! Imagine all the good that would come from a mass-adoption of even a few of these suggestions! I believe that this is going to be the decade of individual, family, and community activism and that the fate of our futures is as bright as we are willing to work to make them.

Want to join in?

— Connor

 

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