A Fantastic Week of Liberty and Entrepreneurship in Ponikiew, Poland

This year’s Liberty English Camp in Poland was strategically held right after the biggest libertarian conference Poland has ever seen – the European Students for Liberty Regional Conference in Krakow. That successful event brought nearly 120 young, passionate freedom lovers to attend a great conference, enlarge their networks, and simply to have fun. It is not a coincidence that I am mentioning the ESFL conference when talking about our Liberty English Camp, because as they were just one day apart we were able to share a few speakers and also a number of students. The conference built the perfect foundation for the Camp. On Sunday, September 8th, 20 students from 4 countries (Estonia, Germany, Nigeria, Poland) and 6 moderators from 6 countries (Belarus, Ethiopia, Italy, Nigeria, Poland, United States) gathered in the picturesque village of Ponikiew, 7km from Wadowice, Pope John Paul II’s hometown. Introductions were made around the fire and with a wonderful barbeque. It was Monday when the official program began. Activities were divided into lectures on classical liberal fundamental principles, discussions in small groups, guest lectures, workshops, movie screenings, and student debates. The program was very packed, but we still found time for sport (tennis, volleyball, swimming pool) and late night discussions. The camp’s program was very intense. Classes on classical liberal principles were conducted by Glenn Cripe, executive director of Language of Liberty Institute and Jaroslav Romanchuk, head of the Mises Scientific Center in Belarus. Students had a chance to explore philosophical background and learn about the proper role of government as envisioned by the most prominent liberal/libertarian thinkers. Beyond ideology, an important stress was made on the importance of entrepreneurship as an independent way of living. This year’s camp was host to an amazing line up of speakers, all promoting that message:  Michael Severance of …

A Critique of Hans-Hermann Hoppe: Monarchy vs Democracy

Which is better, a monarchy or a democracy? According to economist Hans-Hermann Hoppe, both are not good, but a monarchies probably do less harm than a democracies. In his book, “Democracy: The God that Failed,” Hoppe wrote that a monarchy is like a private government, and a democracy is like a public government. In that sense, the monarchies benefit from the advantages of private property, and have a higher incentive to invest in the long-term value of the country. However, Jacek Sierpinski argued that there may be flaws in this theory. In his paper titled, “A Critique of Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s Thesis on Lesser Harmfulness of Monarchy than Democracy,” Sierpinski examined data which shows that monarchies may not be much better for citizens after all. Jacek Sierpinski’s paper has been posted below, along with Mr. Sierpinski’s introduction. The paper has been translated from Polish. Abstract The aim of this paper is to critically analyse the thesis of Hans-Herman Hoppe that although any government – taken as a territorial monopolist in the field of jurisdiction and tax imposition – is an organisation harmful both from the economic and ethical point of view since it violates property rights in an institutionalized and legal manner, exploiting private owners and contributing to the process of “decivilization,” yet the monarchy is less harmful than any democratic state. The ultimate point is to prove that Hoppe’s assumption on lower time preference of the governing monarch is not sufficient to conclude that monarchy is less responsible for violating property rights and that it contributes to the process of “decivilization” less than democracy. Introduction: Hoppe on monarchy and democracy In his works, Hans-Hermann Hoppe presents the thesis that any government – regarded as a territorial monopolist in the field of jurisdiction and tax imposition – is an organisation harmful both from …

The Progressive Mind and Other Essays

Journalist Stephen Browne presents his insights in to the mind of the progressives within civilizations; where they come from and why they believe what they speak about. Part of a work in progress titled “The Progressive Mind and Other Essays” Steve Browne graduated with an MA in anthropology in 1991, and moved to Poland. From 1991 to 2004 he taught English in Poland, Bulgaria, Serbia and Saudi Arabia. He is co-founder of the Liberty English Camp in Lithuania, and Language of Liberty Institute which teach the principles of political liberty and free markets through English-language instruction.  

Shoemaker Dratevka and the Dragon

By Stephen Browne   A long, long time ago in the land called Poland, there was a Prince called Krak who built a castle on a hill called Vavel near the river Vistula and invited people from all over to come and live nearby.   You see, the land near the river was a very good place for a city. There were broad fields that were just right for growing crops and grassy meadows for raising sheep. The woods nearby were full of berry bushes for making kompot to drink and sweet jams and jellies. Prince Krak told everybody that if they would come to live near his castle, he and his knights would protect them from anybody who wanted to take their land and sheep away from them. For you know, that as soon as people begin to make life better for themselves, someone will want to come and take what they have from them if they can.   So, hardworking and honest men and women from many different places came to the city of Krak. First farmers and shepherds, and then as time went on, weavers to make cloth from the wool of the sheep, carpenters and brickmakers to make houses and furniture, shoemakers, tailors, brewers and merchants.   The Visla was broad and deep near the city and the proud men of the mountains would come down every year on their rafts made of logs to sell in the great port of Gdansk on the Baltic Sea. They would stop in the city of Krak to rest and buy food for their journey. The people of the city would sell them fine woolen cloth to take with them on their rafts to sell to the merchants in Gdansk.  The merchants would sell it to ship captains to …