We’ve been around since 2003. However, many people are just hearing about us. Last Saturday, one of them asked me to explain our purpose and main message on the John DeMasi Radio Program on WPGG, 95.5FM. I was also asked why we need donations. Here is what I said:
Liberty and Prosperity was created nineteen years ago to do what almost every institution in America once did. They each told, in some way, that America was a great and exceptional country. Each of them also explained how, and why we were so lucky to live here. This was taught in almost every public school and college. This was promoted by almost every newspaper, magazine, radio station, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, business. It was even imbedded in most of our cartoons and comic books!
Today, all of these institutions and the media do just the opposite. Today they systematically deny that America was ever great and mock or attack anyone who disagrees. They systematically lie about everything that made America great. They falsely blame America for almost every evil and injustice in the world.
Our main purpose is to teach the truth about America as these institutions once did—until about 1963, nearly sixty years ago.
We begin by telling these important truths about America’s unique and exceptional history:
“The American mainland colonies were the least taxed territories on earth. Indeed, it is probably true to say that colonial America was the leased taxed country in recorded history. Government was extremely small, limited in its powers, and cheap. Often it could be paid for by court fines, revenue from loan offices, or sale of lands. New Jersey and Pennsylvania governments collected no statutory taxes at all for several decades. One reason American living standards were so high was that people could dispose of virtually all their income. . . ” A History of the American People by British historian Paul Johnson (1997) at Page 108.
- The English colonies of North America did not have gold, silver, or trade routes to the East. Unlike the kings of Spain, the English kings could not offer their insider friends instant wealth by giving them permission to settle here. Those who settled the English colonies had to work hard for years to find wealth here. Those who settled the 13 English colonies of North America demanded and got written charters or contracts (later called constitutions) protecting their rights to keep what they earned. The 1664 charters that created both “East New Jersey” and “West New Jersey” were typical.
- Very few rich and powerful insiders in England wanted to move to British North America. However, Britain’s rulers wanted colonies here. They thought explorers like Henry Hudson and Giovanni Verrazzano would find a profitable “Northwest Passage” above North America that would let them sail to China and India the way the Spanish found such a passage below South America. Britain’s rulers wanted English colonies in North America to keep Spain and France away from it. British rulers had to do what was needed to persuade poor “losers” of European wars and power struggles to settle their colonies in America. They sent many as indentured servants or convict laborers.
- Those who settled in British North America had almost no colonial government to tax or control them. This was pure luck. While Spanish, Portuguese, and French colonies in America were strictly run by the governments of those countries, Americans in the British colonies were basically on their own for their first 150 years. British rulers were too busy with almost wars. Besides going the war against Spain, France, and Holland, British rulers also had wars with Scotland and Ireland, and two English civil wars with each other. During this time, Americans were left on their own to invent only the very little government they felt they needed. In New Jersey, there were basically four government offices in each county. There was a County Clerk to record all claims to land. There was a County Judge to decide disputes. There was a County Sheriff to enforce the law. There was a County Surrogate to care for property, widows, and orphans when someone died. There were no taxes other than taxes paid by people who owned land to pay for the roads, bridges, and public buildings they felt they needed. At that time, landowners in New Jersey were called “freeholders”, and the councils that decided how their tax money would be spent were called “Boards of Chosen Freeholders”. That name for county councils continued in New Jersey until 2020. At that time, Democratic Governor Phil Murphy and Democratic majorities in the State Legislature claimed the term “freeholder” was “rooted in racism”. They adopted a new state law requiring those county officials to now be known as “commissioners”.
- “The American mainland colonies that became the United States were the least taxed territories on earth. Indeed, it is probably true to say that colonial America was the leased taxed country in recorded history. Government was extremely small, limited in its powers, and cheap. Often it could be paid for by court fines, revenue from loan offices, or sale of lands. New Jersey and Pennsylvania governments collected no statutory taxes at all for several decades. One reason American living standards were so high was that people could dispose of virtually all their income. . . ” A History of the American People by British historian Paul Johnson (1997) at Page 108.
Translation: “America – The Land of Boundless Opportunities”. On Christmas Day, 1776, George Washington’s Continental Army captured roughly a thousand German soldiers who fought for the British during the Battle of Trenton. In letters to their families in Germany, many of them used those words to describe America and said they had been fighting on the wrong side. Many stayed or came back to America when the war was over.
- America was known throughout Europe as a special “Land of Opportunity” long before we won our independence. The American Revolution was unique. Revolutions in other countries were led by large numbers of poor people fought to gain better lives by taking over from small elites who were already rich. The American Revolution was exceptional. It was led by people who were already prosperous, and who fought to keep what they already had. Unlike in Europe, Americans were free to go into any business they wanted without licenses or permits from the government. They could keep and enjoy almost all of what they produced. Most Americans grew up poor. That was because most families had so many children that there was little inherited wealth even in rich families. Yet it was normal for Americans and indentured servants to be poor as teenagers, complete a basic education and learn a profitable trade or occupation by age 16, and be married, prosperous, and comfortable by their late twenties.
- Slavery was a sin that was tolerated in some parts of America. At that time, there was slavery, serfdom and similar injustice in most of the world. However, on July 4, 1776, Americans publicly declared that this was wrong. In his “Cooper Union Speech” of 1860, Abraham Lincoln documented that most framers of our Constitution intended the “ultimate extinction” of slavery. In many speeches, Abraham Lincoln reminded Americans that our Declaration of Independence was about far more than “the mere separation of the colonies from the motherland”. It also declared that we are all created equal and are “endowed by our Creator” with certain “unalienable rights”, including “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. Lincoln said our nation was built on those “sentiments” and we recite them at the beginning of each of our meetings. However, twenty years later, the new cotton gin and mass production by English factories made cotton and slavery obscenely profitable. That delayed the ending of slavery in the South for 87 (four score and seven) more years. When speaking at his second inauguration, Lincoln reminded Americans this delay in ending slavery was the cause of our Civil War. In that speech, Lincoln also said that the massive destruction and deaths of 600,000 young men from that war were God’s “true and righteous” punishment for America’s delay in ending slavery. Throughout world history, many people fought and died to free themselves from slavery. However, only in America did so many fight and die to free others.
- America was built on Christianity, but a special American Christianity built on freedom, tolerance, and truth. Americans respected and wanted the truth. They did not care if truth was discovered through the Bible, logic, or observation. That is why a skeptical scientist like Benjamin Franklin admired and supported fundamentalist preacher George Whitefield, and why a devout Christian like John Adams worked closely with a skeptic like Thomas Jefferson. American Christianity was built on the Judeo-Christian foundation of both Old and New Testament. It embraced the universal values of the Ten Commandments and “Love thy neighbor as thyself”.
We need money to deliver our message because very few institutions in New Jersey today are willing or able to deliver it. We need money to maintain our website, send out weekly email messages, and pay for postcards, literature, radio time, and special events.
If you think we should include anything else in our core message, please let us know! If you agree with our purpose, and want to help us do a better job, please contact us. Thanks.
LibertyAndProsperity.com is a tax-exempt, non-political education organization of roughly 200 citizens who mostly live near Atlantic City, New Jersey. We formed this group in 2003. We volunteer our time and money to maintain this website. We do our best to post accurate information. However, we admit we make mistakes from time to time. If you see any mistakes or inaccurate, misleading, outdated, or incomplete information in this or any of our posts, please let us know. We will do our best to correct the problem as soon as possible. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone (609) 927-7333.
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Seth Grossman, Executive Director