The Voluntary Life: 2011

19 December 2011

Freedom From Politics Part 1

Part 1 in a series of episodes on freedom from politics. Special guest is Stephanie Murphy, host of the Porc Therapy podcast, co-host of Free Talk Live and Prometheus Unchained, all of which are on the Liberty Radio Network.
Show Notes:
Hans Herman Hoppe on Marxist and Austrian Class Analysis
Harry Browne's book How I Found Freedom In An Unfree World
Stephanie's book Ron Paul: A Life of Ideas
Freedomain Radio podcast
Complete Liberty Podcast

Podcast Episode

12 December 2011

Unjobbing: Author Interview with Michael Fogler

This episode is an interview with  Michael Fogler  about his book "Un-Jobbing: The Adult Liberation Handbook". Michael talks about his life experience, having reached the age of 58 without ever having had a single, full-time job. He talks about how his personal experience in "failures" a traditional career-job route led him to discover unjobbing as an alternative approach. He talks about how he came up with the name "unjobbing" and the influences on his ideas, such as Grace Llwellyn's book "A Teenage Liberation Handbook".

Michael provides some tips on achieving personal liberation, including the issue of minimising expenses, saving and ensuring that you "act your wage". He talks about the importance of having other people around you who share your values, especially as the unjobbing approach is not considered "normal" by mainstream culture. Check out our previous episodes on Unjobbing. Podcast Episode

5 December 2011

Parent-Free By Choice: An Interview with Vickie Bergman

Vickie is the author of the Demand Euphoria Blog and Parent-Free By Choice Blog. In this interview we discuss the concept of "Parent-Free By Choice", which is the choice of some adults to voluntarily separate from one or both parents. Vicky talks about why this choice, although quite widespread, is viewed as a taboo subject. Vickie shares her thoughts on whether or not adults who choose to cease contact with their parents are "running away" from issues that they should stay and face up to:

"There is this whole stigma about "running away from your problems". It starts with kids and bullying in school where everyone says running away from a bully doesn't do anything, you have to stick in there and face it. That carries over into our family relationships: this idea that "no matter what they do to you they are still your family" and you are supposed to toughen up, figure it out, forgive or whatever. I think that is unfortunate because it allows people to keep treating each other badly. I think running away from somebody who is treating you badly is actually a good thing because you deserve better and you shouldn't put up with it. I think removing yourself from a toxic situation is good for you."

Here are Vickie's thoughts on the question of whether people owe their parents anything:

"I have often thought about this concept of your parents giving you the "gift of life", but I always think about that word gift and think about how...if it is truly a gift then you don't owe them for it. If they gave you a gift then they shouldn't be charging you for it every day of  your life. A lot of parents call it a gift and then make you feel guilty for everything they do for you."

Vickie's blog, Parent-Free by Choice, offers a supportive environment for people to anonymously share their own stories about their choices. As Vickie explains;

"No matter what happened to them in childhood or how their relationship [with their parents] is now, if they feel like it's not a positive relationship then that is all that matters and they should have the freedom to get out of it."


Podcast Episode

28 November 2011

Uncollege: An Interview with Dale Stephens

An interview with Dale Stephens, founder of the Uncollege movement. Uncollege represents a revolutionary approach to education: applying the principles of unschooling to higher education. In the interview Dale talks about opportunities to hack your education and go for self-directed learning. He challenges the notion that going to college is the only path to success and identifies the declining value proposition of traditional college education, as well as the potential of an alternative, self-directed approach. Podcast Episode

21 November 2011

Living and Working Abroad



This episode is about how living and working abroad can bring more freedom into your life. Special guest on this episode is Jaime, a freelance writer living in Beijing. Jaime is the author of the blog It's Always Sunny in South Korea Beijing and is one of the co-authors of the Chinarchy podcast and blog network. Podcast Episode

14 November 2011

The Fear of Freedom by Eric Fromm

This episode explores the topic of psychological barriers to personal and political freedom. It is a discussion of the ideas in Eric Fromm's book "The Fear of Freedom" (also published under the title "Escape from Freedom"). Podcast Episode

7 November 2011

Successful Entrepreneurship: An Interview With Judd Weiss

An interview with Judd Weiss, entrepreneur and author of the Hustlebear.com blog. Judd has been an entrepreneur since he was 14. He became a millionaire by the age of 24 and has launched successful businesses in diverse industries including selling watches online, commercial real estate brokerage and parking. Judd talks about some of the principles behind successful entrepreneurship. Topics include:

  • How accepting that you start out both ignorant and incompetent can help you succeed
  • Why success normally comes just after the point when most people quit
  • Why you don't have to be interested in the product you are selling
  • What a young startup entrepreneur can use to differentiate themselves from much older and better connected competitors
  • The impact that pursuing entrepreneurial success can have on your personal relationships 


  Podcast Episode

31 October 2011

How To Get Financial Freedom

Financial Freedom is an achievable goal. But what exactly is it and how does making financial freedom your goal differ from more traditional financial goals? A common approach to personal finance goes something like this:

MAINSTREAM ASSUMPTIONS ABOUT PERSONAL FINANCE

  • the goal of personal finance strategies is material wealth and comfort;
  • the method is getting a secure job;
  • the measure of how well you are doing is your salary;
  • debt should be used, with caution, to obtain consumption items (mortgage for a house, loans for a new car etc.);
  • provision for the future should be made through a pension.

A approach aimed at financial freedom is completely different in every way:

ASSUMPTIONS WITH FINANCIAL FREEDOM AS YOUR AIM

  • the goal of personal finance strategies is financial freedom (the level of wealth is optional);
  • the method is entrepreneurship;
  • the measure of how well you are doing is how long before you have to work again, where passive income - expenses > 0
  • debt should not be used for consumption items, but might optionally be used with caution to further entrepreneurship and value generation;
  • provision for the future is made through creating passive income streams.

Thoughts on how to adopt financial freedom as your goal are provided in the podcast. The views expressed are only my opinion about this subject and I am not any kind of financial advisor. Podcast Episode

28 October 2011

Getting More Freedom In Your Job

You can still have a lot of freedom if you are working for somebody else. Here are some suggestions of what you can do to transform your job and liberate yourself. The youtube documentary about a Brazilian company that is mentioned in the episode is called "The Caring Capitalist".  Podcast Episode

14 September 2011

Entrepreneurship Part 2: The Art of The Start


 
This episode is a discussion with startup entrepreneurs including the founders of  choreplan.com and knowitapp.com. We talk about the ideas in two great books on entrepreneurship: The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki and Rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson. Podcast Episode

13 September 2011

Entrepreneurship Part 1: The Real Revolutionaries

A podcast for those considering starting a business. The episode starts with a look at the value of entrepreneurship as a path to obtaining freedom in your own life and some background to my own experience with entrepreneurship. Two key questions are addressed: how do you choose which project to pursue as a new entrepreneurial venture? Also, how do you overcome the fear of getting started?  Podcast Episode

23 July 2011

The Voluntary City Part 3: The Future

Part 3 in a series on about the potential for voluntary, free market solutions to urban planning problems. In this episode we discuss the potential for more voluntary kinds of urban communities, urbanisation in the developing world and the future of cities. The discussion is based around ideas presented in the book The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society edited by David T Beito, Peter Gordon and Alexander Tabarrok. Special guests in this episode are Peter Gordon (co-editor of The Voluntary City) and Adam, Stephen and Emily, who are the authors of the blog Market Urbanism.
Podcast Episode

The Voluntary City Part 2: Voluntary Land Use Planning

Part 2 of a series about the potential for voluntary, free market solutions to urban planning problems. In this episode we discuss the potential for voluntary land use planning. The discussion is based around ideas presented in the book The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society edited by David T Beito, Peter Gordon and Alexander Tabarrok. Special guests in this episode are Peter Gordon (co-editor of The Voluntary City) and Adam, Stephen and Emily, who are the authors of the blog Market Urbanism.
Podcast Episode

The Voluntary City Part 1: Introduction

This is the first of a series about the potential for voluntary, free market solutions to urban planning problems. This discussion is based around the topics covered in the book The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society edited by David T Beito, Peter Gordon and Alexander Tabarrok. Special guests in this episode are Peter Gordon (co-editor of The Voluntary City) and Adam, Stephen and Emily, who are the authors of the blog Market Urbanism. In the discussion we make reference to Jane Jacobs, author of The Death and Life of Great American Cities and to Robert Moses, the urban planner who's destructive impact is discussed in the book The Power Broker.

Podcast Episode

26 March 2011

We the Living by Ayn Rand

A discussion of Ayn Rand's semi-autobiographical novel We the Living. Published in 1936,  We the Living was the first novel  to emerge in the West that described life in Russia during the communist revolution of 1917 and was written by someone who experienced it. Podcast Episode

26 February 2011

Unschooling Part 3: Putting Unschooling Into Practice

Part 3 in a series on unschooling. This episode is about implementing an unschooling approach. Special guests are Brett Veinotte, host of School Sucks Podcast, Stefan Molyneux, host of Freedomain Radio and Debbie Harbeson, unschooling parent and author of "OK Kids, Time for Bedlam"

Podcast Episode

Unschooling Part 2: The Compulsory Education System


Part 2 in a series on Unschooling. Special guests are Brett Veinotte, host of School Sucks Podcast and Stefan Molyneux, host of Freedomain Radio.


Unschooling Part 1: Instead of Education

Part one of a series of podcasts on Unschooling. This episode is a discussion of one of the most influential books about unschooling: Instead of Education by John Holt. Special guests are Brett Veinotte, host of School Sucks Podcast and Stefan Molyneux, host of Freedomain Radio.

"Education... now seems to me perhaps the most authoritarian and dangerous of all the social inventions of mankind. It is the deepest foundation of the modern slave state, in which most people feel themselves to be nothing but producers, consumers, spectators, and 'fans,' driven more and more, in all parts of their lives, by greed, envy, and fear. My concern is not to improve 'education' but to do away with it, to end the ugly and antihuman business of people-shaping and to allow and help people to shape themselves."    John Holt 1976

Podcast Episode

22 January 2011

Unjobbing Part 2: Experiences

This episode is a discussion of personal experiences of different stages of unjobbing: barriers to doing it, planning for it, working towards it and achieving an unjobbed life. In the discussion we refer to the book "Un-Jobbing"  by Michael Fogler. Other references in the discussion include the book "Vagabonding" by Rolf Potts and Steve Jobs' 2005 Stanford commencement speech.

Podcast Episode

Unjobbing Part 1: Introduction

The first of a two part series about "Unjobbing": breaking free of the rat-race to do only things that you love with your life. In this episode we explore the idea of Unjobbing set out in the book "Un-Jobbing : The Adult Liberation Handbook"  by Michael Fogler. Other books referred to in the discussion include "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" by Robert Kiyosaki.