Tonight’s guest requires no introduction for many of you. He has been in political media far longer than your humble correspondent, and has earned no shortage of notoriety.
For those of you so deprived as to not know who Ian Freeman is, I look forward to introducing you to this man, without whom you might never have heard of me.
Born Ian Bernard, Mr. Freeeman adopted the moniker turned legal name during his adventures in libertarianism, a school of thought to which he still adheres. He founded an open phones talk radio show while still living in the state of Florida, and for a brief period I was a co-host of that nationally syndicated show. That production served in no small part as the inspiration for the format you today enjoy on SurrealPolitiks.
Inspired by activism he saw in this state, Mr. Freeman moved to New Hampshire and joined the Free State Project, a libertarian political migration wherein adherents pledge to commit the maximum possible effort to ensuring the maximum role of government is the protection of person and property.
Maximum being an important part of this phrase. Mr. Freeman has described himself as a voluntaryist. Last I checked, he would prefer there were no government to speak of, and that all human interaction was voluntary. A noble enough goal, whatever its feasibility.
In pursuit of this ideal, Mr. Freeman started the Shire Free Church, and through this spread the gospel of Bitcoin as a means by which to remove the coercive element of government currency from our economic dealings.
For this he was hunted by the FBI, hauled before a jury to answer for preposterous allegations of money laundering and tax crimes, and convicted.
At the time of this writing, he faces more than 800 months in federal prison at a sentencing date imminently before us.
Ian Freeman is a dear friend of mine. He has stood by me when it was not easy to do. Though we live not far away, I have not seen him in more than three years, and I fear I may not see him again for many more. I am deeply troubled by the challenge he has ahead of him, and today’s episode may prove a difficult one as a consequence.
But it is my honor to present to you tonight his fascinating history, and his cautionary tale.
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- Christopher Cantwell
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