"The greatest violator of the principle of equal liberty is the State. Its functions are to control, to rule, to dictate, to regulate, and in exercising these functions it interferes with and injures individuals who have done no wrong. The objection to government is, not that it controls those who invade the liberty of others, but that it controls the non-invader. It may be necessary to govern one who will not govern himself, but that in no wise justifies governing one who is capable of and willing to govern himself. To argue that because some need restraint all must be restrained is neither consistent nor logical. "
Charles T. Sprading
(1871-1959) Libertarian activist, writer
Charles T. Sprading's Introduction to Liberty and the Great Libertarians; An Anthology On Liberty; A Hand-book Of Freedom (Los Angeles: The Libertarian Publishing Company, 1913)
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Reader comments about this quote:
Not exactly sure what he means by "equal liberty" Most governments functions are to control, to rule, to dictate and to regulate BUT, those are not the functions of a de jure representative republic. Why is it necessary to govern one who will not govern himself? If he commits a crime, justice will deal with him; victimless crimes are crimes against humanity and law. I've not read Sprading, but, the here samplings are just more neocon indoctrinations, attempting to takeover the libertarian movement.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
    Mike, We meet again on this guy. "...justice will deal with him,..." begs the question, "Who provides and controls Justice other than the state?" As the quote dates to 1913, I'm not sure 'neocon' is appropriate.
     -- J. B. Wulff, Bristol, CT     
  • 1
    1913, an interesting year for this quote, when we got the Fed and the 16th ammendment. It's been downhill ever since.
     -- jim k, Austin, Tx     
    He would have been handy during the Civil Rights movements in ths south. The state(s) really did deny equal liberty. Thanks be to the Fed for straightening that all out. This guy is a little obtuse and wordy.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
    Makes perfect sense to me. 5 stars for accuracy, thumbs down for the reality of it.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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