The intellectual battle for freedom from big government

Resist much, obey little.”

__Walt Whitman

  Preserving individual freedom requires a duty to resist encroaching government and those who support it. Americans have been battling them for centuries. The fights continue.

Here in North Carolina statist street mobs harass our State legislators to redistribute more public money for bigger, more costly and restrictive bureaucratic social programs, while intellectuals argue for limited government and common-sense fiscal, educational and regulatory reforms long overdue.

Self-serving, vulgar activists use the tactics of irrational rhetoric and unruly demonstrations at the legislative building in Raleigh instead of reasoned debate because they have no basis for their causes. (The laughter of fools is like the crackling of thorns…a noisy gong or clanging cymbal– from the Bible.)

The John Locke Foundation, headquartered in Raleigh, serves as a major bulwark defending our individual freedoms and presenting rational arguments against “a reinvigorated progressive assault.” JLF President Kory Swanson leads the organization of informed people dedicated to a “Freedom Movement.” Mr. Swanson presides over State government policy analysts and journalists.

The Carolina Journal—with a print circulation of 40,000, daily online news and a weekly syndicated radio show—has a staff of journalists who serve a public interest by “expanding liberty and reducing government barriers.” They do “aggressive watchdog reporting,” offer “better options” not found at other news outlets,  and “uncover potential public corruption and taxpayer abuses.” They apply a “consistently critical approach to the assumptions of the State’s big-government establishment”; show “how State laws and policies affect everyday people”; and uphold “free-market values and strong journalistic ethics.”

This organization has expanded its influence for 25 years because the messages ring true with a growing number of North Carolinians. The JLF folks counter ranting, misrepresentations and lies of powerful, entrenched interest groups who tell our State legislators that “it’s unfair for you to keep more of your money” because they want it—in the words of Mr. Swanson.

The John Locke people are honest (non-academic), down-to-earth intellectuals who understand the problems of big government and counter them with facts, evidence and common-sense. They deserve our support.

Readers who believe in repealing or amending the State’s capital-gains tax; performance based-, rather than longevity-, compensation for teachers; repealing the consumer-costly State mandate for “renewable” energy; eliminating regulations on entrepreneurs, and preventing the expansion of a wasteful Medicaid system should support them.

As Mr. Swanson writes: they are “ready for intellectual battle.” Contact him at 1-866-JLF-INFO or


About R. E. Smith Jr.

Mr. Smith writes essays and commentary on politics, American history, environment, higher education and culture. He's been published in print media and at blog sites for about 25 years. Smith's formal education includes B.S. and M.S. degrees from the State University of New York and Syracuse University. He has earned a 21-credit hour Certificate in Professional Writing from the University of North Carolina-Wilmington. Training/work experience: NYS Ranger School; U. S. Army, Corp of Engineers; soil scientist and forester with USDA; Assoc. Professor at SUNY; real estate agent; small business owner.
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