The state is, like any other mortal institution, a creation of man. The authority given to this creature cannot exceed that which its own creators possess. Thus, the state of Utah cannot morally enforce any policy for which it is not given legitimately delegated authority by the citizens who themselves possess that authority prior to and independent of the state.
Individual liberty does not diminish the importance and benefit of institutions such as families, churches, charitable groups, etc. While these each have their place, some more important or regular than others, political battles will always boil down to being between the individual and the state. When the individual is free, he is free to affiliate with whatever institution he pleases. When his rights are protected, all other institutions are as well.
The proper role of government is, as French economist Frédéric Bastiat once wrote, “nothing more than the organized combination of the individual’s right to self-defense.” Any deviation from that core purpose—whether for economic development, educational services, welfare, or any number of other popular programs currently existing—relies upon an illegitimate arrogation of authority. In short, they are violations of individual liberty, and must therefore be opposed.
Areas of focus for the Center for Individual Liberty:
- Uphold personal responsibility as the necessary precedent to individual liberty.
- Oppose all government policies not based upon a legitimately delegated power possessed by the individuals who comprise Utah’s government.
- Promote voluntary association as the moral means of accomplishing important societal goals.
- Encourage families to cultivate attitudes and actions of self-reliance to resist the temptations of the welfare/nanny state.