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Season 4 - Episode 1
The grassroots liberty movement

Matt Kibbe is President and Chief Community Organizer at Free the People, an educational organization turning the next generation on to the values of liberty. Among other achievements, in 2004, he founded FreedomWorks, where he served as President for 11 years. His latest book is Don’t Hurt People and Don’t Take Their Stuff: A Libertarian Manifesto.

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When you hope for 10,000 people to show up, and a million and a half do, you know you’re on to something. As President of FreedomWorks at the time, an organization supporting the Tea Party movement, Matt Kibbe was there when it exploded onto the national scene in the United States. Despite being demonized from both the left and the right, the grassroots movement had some success in challenging the establishment, with dozens of Tea Party supported candidates winning in the 2010 mid-term elections.

But the project of liberty, according to Kibbe, transcends politics. Now at the head of Free the People, he focuses on the more basic values that unite many Americans—as the title of his latest book puts it, Don’t Hurt People and Don’t Take Their Stuff. At his new organization, he says, “We talk a lot to Bernie Sanders supporters, we talk a lot to libertarians, we talk a lot to conservatives, and you’d be shocked to discover that there are common values that unite those groups.”

Matt Kibbe sees great potential in the broader, non-partisan grassroots 2.0 movement that he is a part of. According to him, “We’re in this very disruptive period in world history where technology is undermining the power of dictators, of governments, of corporations, of media companies.” The result is that ordinary people end up with more power in their hands.

Free the People is in the business of telling stories, rather than using graphs and statistics. Whether the topic is the disasters of Mao and Stalin or the insights of Adam Smith, its mandate is to put a human face on the arguments for liberty. With hundreds of short videos, viewed millions of times, Kibbe’s organization is succeeding in reaching a lot of busy people with its powerful messages.

Links of interest
Free the People | Don't Hurt People and Don't Take Their Stuff: A Libertarian Manifesto

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