Originally posted on Freedom Gulch
March 1st marked the tenth anniversary of the death of Harry Browne, best selling author and former Libertarian Presidential Candidate. In celebration of the life of Harry Browne, we bring you this piece by Carla Howell, Polical Director of the Libertarian National Committee, written upon his death in 2006.
I’d heard that a man named Harry Browne would be the banquet speaker for my first Libertarian state convention in 1995. As I waited at my dinner table for his speech to begin, I busied myself as I often do: opining about politics. I had no idea he was sitting right at my table with his wife Pamela.
They listened quietly while several of us dominated the conversation. Finally, someone acknowledged his presence. The woman next to me turned to him and thanked him for his book “How I Found Freedom in An Unfree World.” She gushed with appreciation for how it changed her life.
I felt foolish for not recognizing this best-selling author, and embarrassed for touting my newbie opinions in front of a man who possessed far greater political knowledge than me.
Then Harry Browne took the stage. Tall and eloquent, his delivery was funny, personable, and charming. He was able to put into simple language the problems of Big Government and the virtues of liberty — concepts I was just beginning to understand — beautifully. I was enthralled. I knew immediately that this was a candidate who I could get behind with all my heart and soul. He later became the 1996 Libertarian nominee for president.
At the end of his presentation, I bounded to the stage to wait in line to speak with him. When my turn came, I briefly acknowledged how excited I was about his campaign and pledged my support.
Then I proceeded to issue four unsolicited suggestions to him. Some of us veteran campaigners call them “yottas” (you-ought-to’s). He politely noted my suggestions.
Later I would realize how naïve I was. None of my yottas were particularly useful or well thought through.
What I should have said instead to Harry Browne on that fateful evening was simply, “Thank you.”
My appreciation of Harry Browne grew each time I heard him speak or read his prose. A more principled, talented, and dedicated man in the world of political activism is just about impossible to find.
Not only was Harry Browne crystal clear about the damaging effects of Big Government and the huge opportunity of small government. He was one tough cookie. He had extraordinary integrity, character, and self-confidence that would enable him to resist being swayed by the temptations, pressures, pomp and circumstance of a U.S. presidency.
If anyone could be trusted to stand up to Big Government with unwavering resolve — and to stand for the rights and freedoms of the everyday citizen — it was Harry Browne. The ideal public servant.
Thank you, Harry Browne, for your courage. Your brilliance. Your energy. Your commitment. Your profound understanding of government and liberty. Your unapologetic boldness.
Thank you Harry Browne for inspiring the many who will work for freedom for generations to come — because of you.
Thank you Harry Browne for your books, essays, interviews, and speeches, which will live on and bless this world forever.
For me, Harry Browne is a giant among men. I will miss him and cherish him as long as I live.
Learn more about Harry Browne here, and by all means, read and watch every bit of his material you can get your hands on.
via Andy Bakker http://ift.tt/1OTEJOe