Raising Freedom

We are excited to welcome our founder and editor’s newest addition to the Freedom Forge family. She arrived during the fabled Blizzard of 2016 (a.k.a. “Snowzilla” or Winter Storm Jonas for you non-East Coasters), which dumped some three feet of snow in the area. We’ll call her Baby Freedom, not only because it fits with our mission statement, but she’s shown an unnatural talent for breaking loose from her swaddle clothes to get her arms free: reminding us (and hopefully everyone else for that matter) that freedom is the natural state of man — and kidkind.

Baby FreedomBaby Freedom arrived to much fanfare. One day she’ll have stories to tell of an auspicious arrival during the height of a blizzard to fire trucks, firemen shoveling snow, ambulances getting stuck on snow-covered highway ramps, and an ER department full of stranded doctors and nurses.

But that is a different story for another time.

We’re particularly excited about the events of the last few weeks because it gives us an opportunity to share Adventures in Parenting from a (small “L”) libertarian perspective.

Parenting, it seems, has far more rules than it did when I was a kid (confirmed with parent input). Car seat laws until age 8? Sometimes longer? Mandatory vaccination schedules? A government agency threatening to take children away for letting them play in a park? Parents being arrested and charged with felony child neglect for letting their child play in the back yard? Instilling notions of communal property in kindergarten and elementary schools? Nobody loses sports teams? Does the government really care more about Baby Freedom than her own parents do? Or does it mostly care about compliance with its mandates – right or wrong – beneficial or harmful? And what about the status of America’s ill-fated social safety net programs? There’s not much confidence in registering for a Social Security program that is projected to be insolvent before Baby Freedom even attends high school.

Baby Freedom has a very uncertain future. Mounting deficits and government debt. Insolvent safety net programs, calls for spiraling taxes to ensure “fairness”, high regulatory burdens, and corporate taxation. These are only a few things the government is doing to threaten Baby Freedom’s right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of her own happiness. And with the amount of time and effort it takes to get government to acknowledge its mistakes and change course on the destructive things it is doing, the future is now.

The journey is just beginning, and we invite you to join us along the way as we bring you updates – and share your own perspectives on the subject by way of guest blog posts – in the Adventures of a Libertarian Parent.

(If you have an incident, story, pro tip, or other sage advice, we welcome your input. You can reach us at submissions (at) freedomforgepress (dot) com. Tag your subject with “AOALP: [your message subject].”

Jackpot Update: Down to 21 Minutes!

PowerballUpdate to yesterday’s Powerball Lottery post.

Unfortunately (or fortunately as it’s still a heck of a prize!), our Powerball winner will split the jackpot with two other lucky winners.

Meaning the cash option is reduced to approximately $310 million.

Deduct Federal Taxes (39.6%): $122.7 million

Deduct CA Income Taxes for the CA winner (12.3%): $38.1 million (Perhaps even more lucky for the other winners reported from Florida, no state income tax, and Tennessee, income taxes on dividends and interest only!) Sorry California, you should have picked a different state to win in. 😉

Net winnings: $149.1 million on a jackpot that was supposed to be headlined at $1.6 BILLION. Representing about 21 minutes worth of spending by the federal government.

The federal government of course, gets to tax all three winners – collecting a total of approximately $368 million.

Once again, the government won the lottery…particularly when you consider that an estimated 1 billion tickets were sold – at a price of at least $2 each, which lines the coffers of state government-run lottery commissions.

No wonder many states have passed laws prohibiting gambling. They don’t want competition.

Lottery Jackpot Represents 73 Minutes of Federal Spending

PowerballThe largest lottery jackpot in US history headlines as a princely sum of $1.5 billion.

But if you’re the lucky winner – overcoming the astronomical odds of 1 in 292 million – and managing to not split the pot with other lucky individuals who also managed to overcome the same astronomical odds….you’ll never see that much thanks to your long lost friends in the Internal Revenue Service and state departments of revenue.

That’s right, not only will you have to fight off droves of never before seen “cousins,” long lost friends, acquaintances, that guy who held the door open for you that one time when you went to buy a lottery ticket…you’ll have to fight off scores of government bureaucrats looking to feast on your winnings in exchange for all the value the government provides to you for the roads they haven’t been building or maintaining.

First, the cash option drops “Billion” from the figure – presently standing at $930 million.

The federal government stands to collect 39.6% in federal income taxes: $368.2 Million

Next, most Americans will face a state tax bite – which varies by state (0% in some states all the way up to a top rate of 12.3% in California. Really California?! No wonder people are packing up and leaving you…), but we’ll estimate state taxes at 5% : $46.5 million

Some will also face city or local income taxes – but we’ll disregard those for now.

Your net winnings will be approximately $515 million.

Federal spending in 2015 was $3.687 trillion (about $421 million per hour).

Meaning the amount of money you’d expect to see from winning the largest lottery jackpot recorded in US history will net you…..73 minutes worth of federal spending.

May the odds be ever in your favor…

Lottery Jackpot
Photo Credit:

“Money” by Pictures of Money