Note: I had the pleasure of meeting and speaking at length with Mr. Machan 20+ years ago in Atlanta with the release of "Private Rights and Public Illusions". I regret my knowledge and appreciation of the principles of Freedom and Liberty were insufficiently developed to appreciate at that time many of the observations he shared.
"Ever since the idea of individual liberty has achieved some measure of credibility over the world, those who would be unseated by its limited triumph had to find some way to discredit it or trump it somehow. One way was to re-christen servitude, to make it appear like an even more important kind of liberty than what individual liberty, properly understood, amounts to.
When a human being is free in the most important, political sense, he or she is sovereign. This means he or she governs his or her own life—others must refrain from intruding on this life, plain and simple. That life may be fortunate or not, rich or not, beautiful or not, and many other things or not, but what matters is that that life is no one else’s to mess with. One gets to run it, no one else does.
Now this is a very uncomfortable idea for all those folks who see all kinds of benefits from running other people’s lives. But they cannot champion this now in so many words, what with individual liberty having gained solid standing, so the only way to remedy matters for them is to claim that their oppression brings even greater freedom to people than the respect and protection of individual liberty."
- Tibor Machan