I Must Speak Out

The Best of The Voluntaryist

1982 - 1999

Selected and Edited by Carl Watner

Some praise from Chris R. Tame, Libertarian Alliance Director

More praise from Sharon Harris, President of Advocates for Self-Government

More praise from subscriber Kurt Fuller

from the publisher

One day in 1982 Carl Watner and a few friends sat down to plan a new publication, The Voluntaryist, dedicated to exploring the possibility of a completely voluntary society. Their purpose was simply stated:

The Voluntaryists are advocates of non-political, non-violent strategies to achieve a free society. We reject electoral politics, in theory and in practice, as incompatible with libertarian principles. Governments must cloak their actions in an aura of moral legitimacy in order to sustain their power, and political methods invariably strengthen that legitimacy. Voluntaryists seek instead to delegitimize the State through education, and we advocate withdrawal of the cooperation and tacit consent on which State power ultimately depends.

I Must Speak Out is a collection of the best articles to appear in the first 100 issues of The Voluntaryist -- a retrospective of nearly seventeen years' worth of effort to show how life outside the State was, and can be, lived.

from The Liberator Online

1999, large format paperback, 485 pages. Price: [$18.95] Prepare yourself for an intellectual and emotional feast! This is pure, 180-proof libertarianism.

I Must Speak Out is a collection of the best articles to appear in the first 100 issues of "The Voluntaryist" - a wonderful libertarian newsletter that has consistently provided great libertarian reading for almost 20 years. . .

Regardless of whether you agree with [voluntaryist] strategy, their exploration of it is powerful, thought-provoking, and raises issues that every libertarian interested in achieving a free society must be familiar with.

BUT... I Must Speak Out is far more than just a book about a particular strategy for achieving liberty. The book is filled with fascinating, fact-crammed and highly readable articles that show how society can flourish without the state. The articles hit on virtually all essential libertarian issues - taxation, privacy, self-ownership, war, the draft, money, home schooling, poverty, victimless crimes and much much more. History, economy, philosophy, ethics this book covers enormous ground. *Check out the table of contents, printed below in its entirety.*

And the authors are superb - there are articles by such renowned libertarian thinkers as (in addition to Watner) Walter Block, Harry Browne, Robert LeFevre, Wendy McElroy, Murray Rothbard, Dean Russell, Mark Skousen, George H. Smith, and more.

This is 485 pages of thought-provoking, challenging, educational and inspiring writing. What a bargain!

Table of Contents

(articles are by Carl Watner unless otherwise attributed)

xi. Why I Write and Publish The Voluntaryist

    Part I: Statement of Purpose

3. What We Are For?--What Do We Believe?

4. What Is Our Plan?

7. The Fundamentals of Voluntaryism

11. Cultivate Your Own Garden: No Truck with Politics

14. From the Editor: "Like a Voice Crying in the Wilderness"--A Restatement of Purpose

18. What We Believe and Why

    Part II: Voluntaryist Critiques of the State

25. The Ethics of Voting , by George H. Smith

33. "If This Be Treason, Make the Most of It!"

35. The Myth of Political Freedom

37. The Case against Democracy: The More Things Change, the More They Remain the Same

41. Notes on War and Freedom, by Ramsey Clark

42. A Note to the Commissioner, by Anonymous

44. The Tragedy of Political Government

47. "Will Rothbard's Free-Market Justice Suffice?", by Murray Rothbard

49. On Keeping Your Own: Taxation Is Theft!

50. Who Are the Realists?, by Roy Halliday

    Part III: Voluntaryist Strategies

55. Neither Bullets Nor Ballots, by Wendy McElroy

57. Methods, by Francis Tandy

61. Living Slavery and All That, by Alan P. Koontz

63. The Voluntaryist Insight: from "The Political Thought of Etienne de la Boetie," by Murray N. Rothbard

69. The Power of Non-Violent Resistance, by Jerry M. Tinker

78. How Can We Do It?, by Robert LeFevre

82. A Way Out -- Victory without Violence

83. Freedom Works Both Ways, by Dean Russell

85. Persuasion versus Force, by Mark Skousen

91. The Illegality, Immorality, and Violence of All Political Action, by Robert LeFevre

95. Thoughts on Nonviolence, by Karl Meyer

97. A Visit to Rhinegold, by Harry Browne

109. An Open Letter to Harry Browne from John Pugsley

122. Election Day: A Means of State Control, by Robert Weissberg

127. Consent, Obligation, and Anarchy, by A. John Simmons

    Part IV: Voluntaryism as a Matter of Integrity and Conscience

139. The Decision Is Always Yours -- Freedom as Self-Control

146. A Further Note on 'Freedom as Self-Control'

147. To Thine Own Self Be True: The Story of Raymond Cyrus Hoiles and His Freedom Newspapers

159. The Case against T-Bills: And Other Thoughts on Theft, by John A. Pugsley

165. "I Don't Want Nothing from Him!"

167. The Day the World Was Lost, by Milton Mayer

171. "Voluntary" Contributions to the National Treasury: Where Does One Draw the Line?

176. "Drawing the Line," by Blair Adams

177. Why Homeschool? Excerpts from Correspondence between Helen Hegener and Carl Watner

181. This Far: No More!, by Anonymous

183. A Definition of Freedom, by Julie Watner

184. "Vices Are Not Crimes": Defending Defending the Undefendable

186. Libertarianism and Libertinism, by Walter Block

197. The Cunning of Governments and the Contributions of Citizens, by Fred E. Katz

200. Participation and the Lie, by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

202. Why I Refuse to Register (to Vote or Pay Taxes), by Anonymous

    Part V: Voluntaryism vs. the American Government

207. A Plague on Both Your Houses

219. To All Patriots and Constitutionalists: Some Critical Considerations on the United States Constitution

223. Propaganda, American-Style, by Noam Chomsky

225. An Octopus Would Sooner Release Its Prey: Voluntaryism vs. Educational Statism

234. Who Controls the Children?

246. A Declaration of Personal Independence, by a Friend of Paine

250. Major Crimes of the United States Government: 1776-1993

264. "By Their Fruits Ye Shall Know Them": Voluntaryism and the Old Order Amish

281. "Sweat Them at Law with Their Own Money": Forfeitures and Taxes in American History

291. Whose Property Is It Anyway?

295. Is "Taxation Is Theft" A Seditious Statement?: A Short History of Governmental Criticism in the Early United States

306. "The Illusion Is Liberty--the Reality Is Leviathan": A Voluntaryist Perspective on the Bill of Rights

    Part VI: Voluntaryism in History

319. The Noiseless Revolution

326. "Health" Freedoms in the Libertarian Tradition

332. "Hard Money" In The Voluntaryist Tradition

343. Thinkers and Groups of Individuals Who Have Contributed Significant Ideas or Major Written Materials to the Radical Libertarian Tradition

349. "And Every Man Did What Was Right in His Own Eyes": Voluntaryism in the Old Testament

355. Libraries in the Voluntaryist Tradition

359. Voluntaryism on the Western Frontier

366. Voluntaryism and the English Language

377. Weights and Measures: State or Market?

381. Voluntaryism and the Evolution of Industrial Standards

394. "One of Our Most Human Experiences": Voluntaryism, Marriage, and the Family

405. "For Conscience's Sake": Voluntaryism and Religious Freedom

414. The Most Generous Nation on Earth: Voluntaryism and American Philanthropy

428. "Plunderers of the Public Revenue": Voluntaryism and the Mails

442. "Beyond the Wit of Man to Foresee": Voluntaryism and Land Use Controls

457. "Stateless, Not Lawless": Voluntaryism and Arbitration

474. The Road to Hell Is Paved with Good Intentions: Voluntaryism and the Roads

Published by:

Fox & Wilkes

938 Howard Street, Suite 202

San Francisco, California  94103

ISBN 0-930073-33-9 (pb)

ISBN 0-930073-34-7 (hc)

Softcover : U$18.95

Hardcover : U$25.95   Hardcover Autographed : U$50.00

Above prices are postpaid and may be ordered direct from:

The Voluntaryist

p.o. box 275-D

gramling, south carolina  29348

Also available for online purchase @ Laissez Faire Books - Price: U$15.95

To order from Laissez Faire by phone call: 1-800-326-0996

Dear Carl,

Congratulations on reaching your 100th issue of The Voluntaryist!

Perserveranse is, alas, a rare quality in the libertarian movement. Many mediocrities and second-handers have prospered on foundation grants and salaries, and glossy but pretentious and dishonest journals have come and gone. But you have soldiered on, producing a newsletter whose writings, especially your own, have consistently added to the body of libertarian knowledge. While short-termist and superficial propaganda will disappear and be forgotten, having had minimal impact, your work will stand the test of time and will continue to have that slow but permanent influence that is the only road to intellectual - and ultimately political - revolution.

Your own writings are always read here with great interest and admiration and certainly must be gathered into book form in order to receive the wider dissemination that their importance requires.

We hope that your intellectual and physical energies are sufficient to give us another 100 issues of The Voluntaryist!

Yours in admiration and solidarity,

Chris R. Tame, Director - The Libertarian Alliance

A newsletter I've long admired and enjoyed is "The Voluntaryist," edited by Carl Watner. Watner founded "The Voluntaryist" in 1982, along with libertarian scholars George Smith and Wendy McElroy. The purpose was to explore the possibility of a completely voluntary society, and how to achieve such a society by means other than electoral political activity. Regardless of whether you agree with that strategy, "The Voluntaryist" has provided us with nearly 20 years of outstanding political writing, from Watner and a host of other leading libertarian thinkers.

To celebrate the 100th issue, Watner has collected the best articles into a massive book titled I Must Speak Out: The Best of The Voluntaryist - and it is a wonderful feast. Provocative, illuminating, a delight to read, this book is also a *bargain* - only [$18.95 post paid] for almost 500 pages of libertarian reading! See for yourself. . . Get a copy - and prepare for an intellectual adventure!

Sharon Harris, President - Advocates for Self-Government

excerpted from: Presidents Corner, The Liberator Online, Vol. 5, No. 2 - January 24, 2000

March 25, 2001


I have been a subscriber to The Voluntaryist for about a year. It has been a great pleasure to be a subscriber and to absorb your great publication bi-monthly. Around the same time that I became a subscriber, I purchased I Must Speak Out. I have been reading an article every day over lunch the last few months.

Voluntaryism is what I have been looking for all these years. I've been referring to myself as an anarchist for many years, but in most people's minds, anarchism = chaos. People are not open to the idea of chaos, but they at least have a sliver of openness to voluntaryism. People are not open to the concepts (such as life without government) without past examples of success, but your book changes all of that. What a fabulous job you have done researching history and bringing things to light that have been buried by professional "historians." Your article on the voluntary history of time zones blew me away. I had no idea that this came to be without government "help," even though it was really not that long ago.

I Must Speak Out is a literal textbook for the concept of voluntaryism. I plan to buy dozens of copies and give them to all the people I care about. Thanks a million for all your hard work in bringing these magnificent ideas to light. I look forward to many more years of viewing your work bi-monthly.


Kurt Fuller

Grand Rapids, Michigan