Land of the Less Free and Home of the “Whatever”

Anecdotal evidence indicates Americans who are able are leaving the country in droves. Among those that are leaving, a significant percentage are also expatriating (that is, giving up the U.S. citizenship). The eastern Caribbean country of St. Kitts/Nevis, which has for years had an economic citizenship program (ie, a way in which a person can purchase their citizenship in St. Kitts/Nevis after a careful and very thorough background check by the authorities there) which they are now considering doing away with because it has become so popular it threatens to destabilize the islands’ sense of identity.

I am acquainted with a few people in this business, among them, Mike Cobb, owner and CEO of ECI Developments, which has created communities primarily for North Americans in Venezuela, Nicaragua, Belize, and Panama, Peter Zipper, Swiss banker who now runs Caye International Bank in Belize, and Doug Casey (whom I can’t say I know, but whom I have met), who is in the process of creating La Estancia Cafayate, an upscale development in Salta, Argentina aimed primarily at North Americans.

All three say that business is booming beyond what they imagined possible before the last U.S. election. If, for instance, you are a banker, administrative assistant in the banking industry, or even a bank teller and are interested in working in Belize, Peter Zipper is in desperate need of people who are experienced in the industry, speak English, and are willing to live in Belize. Business has exploded and he can’t keep up. Even as real estate continues to flounder in North America, real estate companies such as ECI, Coldwell Banker, etc, are expanding in Central America and the Caribbean as fast as they can find experienced agents. Although I don’t have connections in Asia I’m told that a similar influx of Americans (as well as Canadians and Brits) is being experienced by Singapore, Bangkok, Kuala Lampur, and to a certain extent, Hong Kong.

Even Canada is getting an influx of Americans. Newsmax observed, “… [I]mmigration [from the US] into Canada is running at a 4 percent annual rate and foreign applications at Canadian universities surging at a 7 percent annual rate at this time – the reverse brain-drain is in.”

What is driving this flight from the United States to other parts of the world? Two things: the systematic looting of America’s wealth through the printing money and sale of government bonds, and the systematic expansion of government, which has the unpleasant effect of criminalizing everything. (If the health care bill passes in its current form, not having health insurance will be a criminal act, for instance.)

I have contended in my essays over the years that the meaning of being an American is quite different than the meaning of being a Brit, or a German, or a Russian, etc. Countries with a history have a motherland to which the people are committed. American identity, on the other hand, has far more to do with an ideal than a place or a people. What defines America is not its ethnic identity (a melting pot of a variety of ethnic identities) nor the land itself (other than its expansiveness), it’s rather the ideals of freedom and liberty, and their corollary of limited government.

What has happened since late 2001 is a concerted attack on the very sense of what it means to be American. This attack has taken the form of a breathtaking expansion of government, the criminalization of almost every facet of American life, and the inevitable devaluation of wealth that such an intrusive bureaucratic expansion involves (the USDollar is currently at all time historic lows, making our pay and savings many percentage points less than it was even a year ago). As a result, an increasing percentage of Americans have come to the conclusion that to be American in principle (that is, to stay true to the ideals of America), one must abandon the United States of America.

For the last couple of centuries people came to America for the sake of freedom and liberty. In the new millennium they are leaving America for precisely the same reason.

And this is indeed the problem with a nation that is based on an ideal rather than an ethnic identity or an historic rootedness to the land. The very people who would most likely defend the American identity of freedom and liberty and demand reform are leaving instead. This process skews the remaining population to those who would rather rely on government than self or family for their well-being. Eventually there will be no one left to speak out for the persecuted principles of freedom and liberty and those two founding principles of this grand experiment will be put out of their misery.

Hopefully it won’t come to that, but the future of “the land of the free and home of the brave” is looking bleak indeed. What’s needed now is for those of us who remain to come to the defense of freedom and to begin to seriously oppose the unbelievable expansion of government that has occurred this decade. If we don’t step up and be counted, it may soon be too late.

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