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What is your definition of 'freedom'?

Every now and then we all question our own sense of freedom and what it is to be 'free'. How it is to live in the 'land of the free'. As much as it can sometimes be a little deep to talk about with peers, I thought this would be the best place to propose a discussion on your personal opinion of what it is to be 'free'.

See, a lot of people I've asked define 'freedom' as the opportunity to do what ever you want... I then follow this with asking, 'If everyone did as they wished, you'd then be bound by a constant fear of the actions of others, would you not? Then how 'free' would you feel?'

I simply want to start this conversation not because I believe 'freedom' is a definable concept, but because everyones' opinions of the idea is different and it's interesting to hear those opinions.

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    Apr 25 2013: The ability to create goals overcome barriers in the pursuit of and attainment of goals.

    Otherwise this might happen:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wnevk-6h6aI

    You gotta love Mr Frenches maniacal laugh
    • Apr 25 2013: can the freedom of others be ignored in the pursuit of these goals? what do you think about individual freedom and the freedom of society?
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        Apr 25 2013: Life is not a zero sum game, in fact quite the opposite.
        • Apr 25 2013: that doesn't explain your point either, please elaborate?
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        Apr 25 2013: The more the government does for you the less freedom you have. As it is at least half of your life is spent paying taxes so at least half of your life you are a financial slave.

        Of course if you live in Somalia you are not a slave but you are subject to theft or being killed so the rule of law has it's advantages.

        In either case you are subject to force that you have to yield to.

        The situation that does not require force is the free market as 2 individuals exchange in pursuit of their own interest. You want a burrito more than the money in your pocket and the burrito vendor wants your money more than the burrito in his cart. This causes a thank you thank you moment

        In this example the exchange is not a zero sum game, it is win win.

        The conjecture is that the big evil corporations have created a zero sum game but they have not. E.G. Walmart allows you to buy more crap for less money which is why people go there in droves. Walmart raises the standard of living of it's customers.

        Governments are not productive because they don't have to respond to market forces. As they grow they take money that would be in the market place by force (if you doubt this talk to Wesley Snipes or Willie Nelson or the guy from the TV show survivor), this money is no longer available to be used in the market place and so the market place shrinks. How far can the freedom be subjugated think North Korea #177 in freedom out of 177 countries. This is why in the USSR the number one product was vodka as the people had to medicate as their goals and freedom were so oppressed.

        http://www.heritage.org/index/ranking

        So you can see that with government freedom is a zero sum game once it goes beyond the rule of law.
        • Apr 26 2013: i agree with you completely, but that's not the whole story. what about business monopolies?

          there are both non zero sum games and zero sum games present.

          when government taxes money through taxes, where does it go?

          thanks for taking the time to explain in detail by the way!
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        Apr 26 2013: Consider that if the government did not bail out GM the biggest manufacturing company in history would now be extinct.

        At one time Montgomery Ward begat Sears which begat Walmart

        Monopolies come and go who cares, the one who really benefits is the customer.

        Where do taxes go? look at the budget it goes to a ton of entitlements to corporations (corporate welfare) of which if they got rid of them the budget would be balanced, as well as medicare that the average citizen currently receives 7 times more than he pays in in services, as well as the other ponzi scheme called social security which is rife with corruption, and the corruption known as defense contractors. It sure as hell isn't filtering down to students or good roads now is it?
        • Apr 26 2013: quite right the government should never bail out a company that's the exact opposite of capitalism. gm however does not hold a monopoly.

          there are no monopolies because whenever a company tries to form one they're prevented from doing so by the government - removing the freedom of corporations to set up monopolies gives more freedom to the customer.

          excellent points about defense contractors! i'm glad we're on the same page about corporate welfare. to me though that's the fault or the public sector corrupting government for its own selfish ends. i wonder where you place the blame? is it corporations' fault for lobbying the money out of government, or the government's fault for agreeing?
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        Apr 26 2013: It is the fault of the people for acquiescing there responsibility/freedom to government.

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