Introducing Freedom Matters -

Welcome to the first issue of Freedom Matters, the official publication of The Foundation for the Advancement of Free-Market Thinking. The Foundation is a non-profit organization recently established by Appenzeller Business Press (publisher of The Daily Bell) to provide financial support to projects that further the public's understanding of free markets.

The Foundation's work is rooted in a confidence that freedom is the touchstone of human progress. It is assisted in its work by an advisory board of free-market thinkers, chaired by the co-editor of this newsletter, Ron Holland.

Each edition of Freedom Matters reports on the successes and setbacks of pro-freedom efforts around the world. Although we sometimes visit topics in economics and finance, the emphasis is on mankind's sociopolitical life.

Freedom lovers in the U.S. and the European Union who struggle daily with the erosion of liberty, with the burdens imposed by distant central governments and with the government's perverse interference in the free operation of markets have an ally in the Foundation. Our goal is to the restore what is best in Western Civilization through honest history, the understanding of markets provided by the Austrian School of economic thinking and an examination of history's occasional episodes of truly limited government, including the experience of the Swiss Confederation and the earlier years of the United States.


Anthony Wile
Executive Director
The Foundation for the Advancement of Free-Market Thinking

By Ron Holland

The U.S. Internal Revenue Service recognizes 1.8 million non-profit educational foundations, many of which carry a distinct ideological or philosophical color. While it's true that in recent decades there has been a tremendous growth in the number of organizations working to limit government and expand liberty, there has been little pay-off in the arena of practical politics.

So modest have been the results that perhaps we should question whether the road to freedom is marked by Washington-based foundations using tax-deductible contributions to educate the public, testify before Congress and lobby for the free market. For 50-plus years we have hoped for and worked toward a victory that continues to elude us. The hope has been that with just one more research project, one more foundation, one more public relations effort we will finally roll back big government.

The Washington Beltway is ringed with institutes and foundations advocating our goals, but to little avail. We know there are hundreds of well-meaning conservative and libertarian organizations and think tanks asking for your attention and support. But what is the best way to actually get something done?

We hope freedom-loving individuals will consider our new approach toward achieving free-market goals.

It's Time To Stop Trying The Wrong Thing

The American people have been losing the war against bigger and more intrusive government since President Woodrow Wilson. Perhaps it is time to take the hint provided by Albert Einstein when he described insanity as "doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results" and try something new. Maybe we should stop following the rules created to sustain the status quo.

That's why we organized The Foundation for the Advancement of Free-Market Thinking on a totally different model from other educational, lobbying and political action projects. And, since most past efforts to promote freedom haven't worked, we've reviewed the few true victories and are attempting to distill the elements of their success. What we're moving toward is a decentralized, bottom-up approach suited to today's fast-paced internet world.

We Will Avoid the Washington Stockholm Syndrome

The Stockholm syndrome refers to a paradoxical response wherein hostages gradually come to identify with their captors.

A similar process can develop when a project that sets out to promote freedom gets too close to the elite institutions and government-centric power-brokers that the project is supposedly dedicated to opposing. In Washington and other capitals, the freedom advocates and the caretakers of Leviathan mingle and socialize; they lobby the same agencies; they testify before the same government committees. They swim in the same waters, and both are focused on power.

Even with the best of intentions and the strongest philosophical grounding, few individuals who enter the highly charged and enticing environment of government power can resist being transformed. Over time, the passion for politics and the focus on government subdues the would-be rebel and pulls him in. The pro-freedom pot-stirrer is tamed and learns to get along by honoring all the established totems and respecting all the established taboos. "Them" becomes "us." The reformer becomes the reprobate.

That's not a pattern we intend to imitate. The Foundation for the Advancement of Free-Market Thinking is based in Vaduz, Liechtenstein, a small country where small government -- very small -- comes naturally. The atmosphere is right, and so are the laws, which make the country ideal for operating a cost-effective non-profit foundation.

We Say No to 501(c)3

A simple purpose motivates the political elites in the U.S. to offer tax incentives for non-profit organizations: to keep them corralled on the establishment reservation. So long as a non-profit is sufficiently docile, its contributors receive tax deductions for the support they give. The organization builds its financial life around those tax deductions. It becomes dependent on tax deductibility -- and so learns to fear doing anything that might endanger its tax-exempt status.

Organizations that wander off the reservation come under attack. Ron Paul's excellent Campaign For Liberty, for example, was dragged into a regulatory process under rules written to catch anyone who gets too serious about free markets or about economic thinking that places the individual, not government, at society's center. They're fighting back, but even so, the struggle is a warning to other tax-exempts that a little talk about freedom is permitted -- but don't go too far.

The Foundation is determined to operate without handcuffs. We prefer a smaller budget and complete freedom to a larger budget and a life of compromise. So, even though we draw much of our budget from our friends in the U.S., we haven't undertaken to organize the Foundation as a tax-exempt U.S. entity.

We also keep legal control of the Foundation outside of the U.S. Although six of the eight advisory board members are American, by design no U.S. person serves as a Director of the Foundation. This assures the privacy of contributors and protects the integrity of the organization from any pressure emanating from the U.S.

Remaining Independent & True To Our Mission

The Foundation places a premium on private, individual donations, which is another way of assuring that the Foundation is able to fulfill its mission with maximum efficiency.

Since the Foundation does not seek funding from large corporations or other establishment sources, it is able to pursue its stated course without any undue pressure or influence being brought to bear. Over time, many foundations that began as a force for freedom have moved away from their stated goals in order to attract large donors. Their mission was compromised by budgetary necessities. This should not, and likely cannot, happen to our Foundation, because of its reliance on small contributions.

Full Transparency

Supporters should not have to guess how their funding is used. The Foundation publishes an annual, audited accounting and report of its activities. While the report respects the privacy of individual contributors, it does show how their money was spent to advance the cause of freedom .

In addition, we provide nearly real-time reporting to our contributors on how their money is being put to use. Each issue of Freedom Matters provides details on recent expenditures and on the accomplishments of those who have received support from The Foundation.

The Media Elite & Their Sins of Omission

Life-long libertarians David and Charles Koch have contributed over $100 million dollars to think tanks and political organizations to promote libertarianism. They certainly should receive an "A" for effort.

You can read about those efforts in the somewhat biased Covert Operations expose in The New Yorker magazine. It tells a revealing story about their decades-long attempt to establish a strong libertarian movement by creating, funding and controlling pro-freedom organizations. They have had some success, as with the Cato Institute, and we applaud their efforts. But $100 million is a big budget, and when we look at the results, we doubt that it has been spent effectively.

The several Koch accomplishments, welcome as they are, pale in comparison with the vibrant new freedom movement built by the recent combination of the educational projects of the internet-savvy Mises Institute and style editorials. Together they launched the Ron Paul Campaign. This effort was later joined by thousands of individuals organizing through social media and by the novel fundraising and media strategies of Trevor Lyman. This new, bottom-up Rockwell/Trevor Lyman Approach has left the traditional foundation model looking like an antiqued relic of the pre-internet age.

The New Rockwell/Trevor Lyman Approach

Trevor Lyman is the Paul Revere of the 21st Century. He is the one who developed the concept for the very successful Money Bombs used to finance the Ron Paul For President campaign. He wasn't involved with the official campaign and had never voted before. But he made a successful entrance into U.S. politics possible for non-establishment forces with his imaginative internet-based fund raising methods. He has literally frightened both the Democrat and Republican Party leaderships because his internet formula for fund raising and promotion makes the efforts of old-style political operatives as out of date as phone booths.

Trevor has revolutionized fund raising using the internet, just as Richard Viguerie ( did for conservative direct mail fund raising back in the 1980's and 90's. For more information on Trevor and his current activities, visit his website at

Times Change

We believe in the free-market thought revolution and see the Internet as the most significant communications development since the Gutenberg press. The speed and decentralized flexibility of the Internet mock the lethargy of government's top-down bureaucracies.

While the new paradigm certainly undermines the effectiveness of the establishment media and controlled two-party political monopoly, it also applies to think tanks and political organizations. Every organization dedicated to promoting freedom will need to decide whether to continue on with the old models or to try something else, to get more results from their resources. As for the Foundation, we believe the Rockwell/Trevor Lyman approach is the key to restoring liberty and limited government in the U.S. and Europe, and that is the model we will follow.


Reports We're Glad We Didn't Miss

Pentagon Attempts to Block Book on Afghan War

Part of the significance of this story is that it appears on neoconservative Fox News. Perhaps the views of Judge Napolitano and the growing number of his Freedom Watch fans are pushing Fox News in a libertarian direction.

While we're not optimistic about a dramatic change in Fox News (they're comfortably positioned as the loosely conservative alternative to all the other news channels), maybe even Rupert Murdoch is allowing viewership and revenue to take some precedence over allegiance the power elite.

We are at a loss for words on why the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency thought that buying all of the copies of a book concerning Afghanistan and their secret "Able Danger" project would somehow keep the information hidden and away from the public. Haven't they heard about the internet? There is nothing they could have done to better promote the book than this course of action. More evidence that the press, politicians and government agencies are at a loss for how to deal with life after Gutenberg.

Newspaper Chain's New Business Plan: Copyright Suits

The collapsing print media gatekeepers who have kept American readers in the dark on our true history for so long are finding their former monopoly status challenged and supplanted by the free market of internet-based alternative media. Their latest solution is to sue websites that link to their coverage, in an attempt to force the competition out of business and steal their website domains. This too will fail, as their only chance for success is to compete with the alternative media head to head. The best solution websites under attack is to move out of the U.S. and escape its legal nightmares.

Lenin's Lesson by Steve Forbes, editor-in-chief, Forbes

Steve Forbes believes the Bush tax cuts might be extended even for the wealthy by the Obama administration. "Rigid ideologists have long known how to make tactical maneuvers to further their ultimate goals." We agree, and we only have to look at Wilson, Roosevelt and even Richard Nixon as ideologues on the left and right, who made tactical maneuvers and slight changes in policy in the march toward their ultimate goals. Even the ultimate socialist, Adolf Hitler, softened his temporarily against toward the Jews prior to the 1936 Olympics to court world public opinion. In fact, this deception was so successful that many Jewish refugees from Germany actually returned home.

Remember Ralph
by Lawrence W. Reed, president of FEE

"He even improved upon Lord Acton's famous remark ('Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely') by adding, 'And power attracts the corruptible." Ralph was a real champion of personal liberty and the free market and like many of us received his early philosophical grounding from "The Freeman" and by reading Frederic Bastiat's "The Law,". The individual impact of Ralph Smeed on the cause of liberty gives us an example how we can magnify our personal efforts today using the internet, blogs and social media.

The Keynesian Illusion Of Demand Creation
by Peter Schiff, president of Euro-Pacific Capital Inc.

Peter Schiff correctly sums up the discussion on CNBC last week between Steve Moore and the entertaining but usually wrong former Labor Secretary Robert Reich. Increased savings, reduced regulation and real free-market capitalism provide the way out of the current recession/depression. It is becoming clear even to the elite commentators of the financial channels that the Reich/Krugman Keynesian model of borrow and spending has failed to get the economy moving ahead.

From Anthony Wile, Executive Director

Our two month old Foundation has gotten off to a fast start.

And we are already putting the money to good use in the cause of freedom. Activities so far:

$3,000 donation to aid in the completion of James Jaeger's documentary film, Spoiler.

Spoiler is a feature-length (90 t0 120 minutes) documentary that explores the social and political attitudes that have dominated the U.S. since World War I. It investigates why government has continued to expand under the influence of both the Democratic and Republican parties and how the power of fiat currency and the progressive income tax aid that expansion. The film is more than history. It presents Nelson Hultberg's potentially revolutionary political strategy for getting a third-party Presidential candidate into the national TV debates or even elected.

You can follow the progress of the production of Spoiler website at

$2,500 donation to support the educational work of is the flagship website of free-market advocate Lew Rockwell, who long has been prominent in activities to advance the public's understanding of the economic philosophy of Ludwig von Mises and the Austrian school. Much of the strength of the free-market movement that is visible today in all parts of the world is the result of Lew Rockwell's many years of effort.

Lew Rockwell is a seminal member of the modern free-market movement and a chief orchestrator of the resurgence in Austrian economic thinking. Rockwell was Ludwig von Mises' own editor in the 1960s and later served as Congressman Ron Paul's chief of staff. He is founder of the Auburn, Alabama-based Mises Institute and the highly successful blog Together, these entities are among the most frequently visited free-market Internet sites in the world.

We urge you to visit It's a valuable resource and the richest part of my own daily reading diet.

To request a free subscription, Click here:

$5,000 Donation to the scholarship fund of Dr. Antal Fekete's Austrian School of Economics

The school attracts students (including novices) interested in the Austrian theory of money, credit and banking. Its program covers the whole spectrum of Austrian economics, with special emphasis on developments that took place after the death of the greatest 20th century economist, Ludwig von Mises.

Dr. Fekete is an esteemed author, mathematician, monetary scientist and educator.

Anatal Fekete was born in Budapest in 1932 and graduated from the Eötvös Loránd University of Budapest in mathematics in 1955. In 1958 he was appointed Assistant Professor at the Memorial University of Newfoundland. After retirement from active teaching in 1995, Professor Fekete became Resident Fellow at the Foundation for Economic Education in Irvington-on-Hudson, New York.

Dr. Fekete is a proponent of the gold standard and a critic of the current monetary regime. His work falls into the school of free-market economic thought led by Carl Menger and more recently Ludwig von Mises. His advanced understanding of monetary and economic issues has enabled him to inspire a new generation of critical thought that advances traditional Austrian views.

We consider Dr. Fekete's brilliant work in the field of Austrian economics to be unparalleled. His new school promises to be a platform for continued education in this growing field of influence. We wish him all the best with his efforts to arm up-and-coming economists with an "Austrian-based" education that can in turn yield future returns for all who value the advancement of free-market thinking.

You can learn more about Dr. Fekete's work at:

A Small Request

We appreciate your contributions to the Foundation and its work. And there is another way in which you can lend us your support -- something you can do without touching your checkbook.

If you maintain a website, please include a brief description of the Foundation and a link to

This will help us expand our circle of readers and reach freedom-lovers we otherwise might miss.

For financial freedom, personal liberty & free-markets,

Anthony Wile
Executive Director
The Foundation for the Advancement of Free-Market Thinking

© Copyright 2008 - 2010 Appenzeller Business Press AG (ARBP). All Rights Reserved. Freedom Matters is an informative compendium of independent economic views and analysis, which is published by ARBP. The information contained in the Freedom Matters is for informational purposes only, is impersonal and not tailored to the investment needs of any particular person and should not be construed as financial or investment advice. ARBP does not accept any liability or responsibility for, nor does it verify the accurateness of the information being provided in the Freedom Matters. Freedom Matters articles and interviews may include the contributions of several Freedom Matters editors and may require factual editing after their initial post. Readers of the Freedom Matters or any affiliated or linked sources or sites must accept the responsibility for performing their own due diligence before acting on any of the information provided within the report regardless of the source. In addition to proprietary, internally generated content, the Freedom Matters publishes guest editorials from a selection of free-market thinkers, which may have been reprinted elsewhere and are not necessarily representative of ARBP's editorial views. Copyright is attributed to the author of any guest editorials featured at the Freedom Matters, unless noted otherwise. ARBP often uses images licensed from Getty Images on the Freedom Matters website.

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