Positive Vision: Build

Positive Vision: Build

If there's one thing I know, it's that you've got to have a positive vision for the future.

I'm not here to sell you anything. I'm not a product guy or a marketing guy.

I'm just sold on this idea. The idea that you have to build and not just fight. Build bigger and greater things, communities, families and tools. And fight the fights you need to fight. But don't spend all your days fighting. Cause you'll just exhaust all your energy. Some of your enemies are invincible. Some are invisible, illusory or ephemeral. Sometimes you go to war against yourself, unknowingly.

That's why you have to have a positive vision for the future, something you can help with, something you can work towards.

And this takes faith. Fighting, sure, that takes courage. But building? That takes faith.

You have to believe that you can and will make a difference. And trust that the people that come after you will appreciate what you've contributed. God willing, you'll have a legacy and heirs to honor you, if you do good in this world.

You have to be smart too. You have to be strategic. What is worth your limited time and energy to work on?

I've circled back to this question in different forms, with different framing, many times since I was about 18. What do I stand for? What do I care about? Where do I want to contribute?

I say this not to brag but to express how difficult it can be to answer this question. Some people have a true and immediately calling. Others have to try stuff and fumble around for a long time to answer this question.

Recently, feeling blackpilled, I started to think about it again. What do I stand for? What values do I care about most?

I might sound like a constitutionalist here, but mainly for me it comes down to Free Speech, Personal Property and the Right to Self-Defense.

In support of values and principles like these, there are many vectors.

What do I mean by vectors?

What I mean is there are many paths to the strengthening of these causes and movements.

A dissident journalist and a privacy-centric open-source bitcoin wallet developer can both play a part in defending and bolstering Freedom of Speech, for example. Whether their actions are innately or explicitly political, whether their tactics are precise or blunt, and whether their mannerisms are refined or brusque...

It doesn't matter so much how they contribute, but rather to what extent their efforts benefit themselves and their fellow man.

The impact on the Grand Project At Hand can be subtle or profound, immediate or incremental. Same with the satisfaction for the individual. The sense of accomplishment may come right away, slowly over time, or some day in the future.

During my latest bout of introspection, I found myself able to write out a lot more of my ideas in my journal. This time I was inspired by something Mises wrote about how "communists and socialists will focus lots of energy on lambasting the rail road owner (capitalist) for trying to protect his business, his people and serve his customers, but spend relatively little (zero) time self-critiquing and asking themselves if the ends justify the means".

As always, no one says it better than Mises:

Excerpt from Human Action

This was a stark reminder to me of how oppressive certain regimes and their attendant mobs have been towards the Stewards of Capital and Sovereign Individuals in the past.

"Dang, am I blessed or what?" I thought. Upon further contemplation: "It really is of value to support industry, even rail companies, on principle. Especially if foundational god-given rights are being targeted," I concluded.

To stand up against Tyranny is, in fact, remarkable.

I may not have such a laudable mission, nor an urgent calling like the Industrialists illustrated here. But I do have principles I care about. And if I spend some time, I can identify vectors to build up and bolster said principles over time. Some actions I may already be taking, and some I can highlight as Noble To-Do's, so to speak.

Sometimes, too, it helps to identify other people or organizations that are representing the same values I care about. Certainly, I don't need to duplicate the labor they've put in already. But maybe I can support them in some way.

Snippets from my journal:

"Thinking on paper"

Values I immediately identified for myself were:

  • private property
  • industry
  • farming
  • privacy
  • free speech
  • right to bear arms

Avenues of directing energy into and contributing to said values:

  • non-profits
  • open-source projects
  • communities (co-ops, meshtadels)
  • personal private property

Questions I left for myself to evaluate various efforts:

  1. Is there a personal benefit to me?
  2. Is there a benefit to my fellow man?

As always with any brainstorming session, the point is not to get things perfect the first time through, but to get ideas out in the open (or onto paper) to help flesh out your thinking.

There are things I might include in my specific examples. For Privacy, say "Tor" and "i2p" come to mind as noteworthy (remarkable).

Other things I did write down are more routine. Like Rental Properties, perhaps.

The point is it's a process. The end result may be more questions. Or it may be feeling inspired and excited, as I did. A little more whitepilled and a little less blackpilled.

I highly recommend to try something like this next time you hit upon some inspiration, such as a profound quote from Ludwig von Mises.

Positive Vision Ideas

Some of the ideas I'm most excited about starting on or continuing are:

  1. More home organic gardening; more learning about regenerative agriculture, herd shares & co-ops, CSA's, trusts; more collecting and planting of various hierloom seeds; eventually buying a plot of land to grow an orchard on.
  2. More mining of bitcoin; supporting open-source bitcoin and monero privacy-related projects; supporting the P2P Rights Fund and the Samourai Wallet Devs.
  3. Investing more in rental properties; trying to be the best possible landlord.
  4. Producing more of my own power via Solar/Geothermal/Biogas/Syngas.
  5. Learning 3D printing, buying a printer and CNC milling machine.
  6. Buying the stocks of companies that champion my values well.
  7. And so on...

All of this is of course but a supplement to my daily work to be the best husband and father I can. No mission is more important. But I also want to set an example for my children, and others, to show what you can build and how you can stand up for what you believe in.


Some additional sources of inspiration that I've drawn upon over the years:

  • The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand
  • The Foundation Series, by Isaac Asimov
  • A Canticle for Leibowitz, by Walter M. Miller, Jr.
  • The Screwtape Letters, by C.S. Lewis
  • The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels, by Alex Epstein
  • The Dao of Capital: Austrian Investing in a Distorted World, by Mark Spitznagel
  • Austrian School for Investors: Austrian Investing between Inflation and Deflation, by Rahim Taghizadegan, Ronald StΓΆferle, Mark Valek, Heinz Blasnik

"Whoever defends his own rights defends the rights of all."

– Ayn Rand