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My Freedom Flame

Motivating Writers Worldwide

Tag: Politics

A Heart to Heart with Myself

From Fitness Trainer to Writer to (in September) Author

I’ve done an exercise such as this way back when, as in last year, on an old blog during my fitness days, or I should say the tail end of my days where fitness was my number one thing. This article is going to be a conversation with one individual, me interviewing myself.

 
Last time I did this, people had a lot of fun with it, so without further ado, meet Todd the Interviewer (A), and Todd the Interviewee (B).

 
Q: Thank you for sitting down and taking the time to conduct this interview.

 
A: Thanks for having me.

 
Q: So tell me, when did you start getting back into writing?

 
A: It’d been off and on for years, like almost a decade. I’d start, lose interest in my story, stop, erase everything I wrote, and started again.

 
Q: What did those first stories look like?

 
A: (laughs) You know, they were the basis for Lord of Columbia, which will be out in September, though I didn’t yet realize it at the time.

 
Q: Has the story remained largely intact?

 
A: Heck no. When I started penning this it was late-2010. I was a fully-fledged Obama apologist who saw zero wrong in the Democratic Congress’ eyes. I figured the Republican Party wasn’t giving them a fair shake, and since I grew up in a Republican-dominated area, I turned a blind eye.

 
Q: So, politically, the landscape has changed?

 
A: Most definite. I came across the Austrian School of Economics, Ludwig von Mises, and Murray Rothbard, among others a year later in 2011, after which I decided to open my mind to my pro-free marketeer teacher. He didn’t just say how the Democratic and Republican Parties were systemically killing the economy, he showed it through their means of big government spending.

 
Q: Seeing that the Trump administration has already added 1.5 trillion to the deficit before his announcing a sixth military branch to claim a US military base in space, I’m guessing the Republicans spend just as much.

 
A: They spend more! And looking around at everyone, conservative, liberal, it made to me zero difference. If the individual in the Oval Office had a ‘D’ following their name, the liberals would’ve praised each move. Ditto for Trump, if he had a ‘D’ following his name, and for Obama, if he had an ‘R’ following his. It’s all about Party, and never about Principle. Senator Rand Paul got it right when he said Republicans spend more than Democrats.

 
Q: And politics, principle, I should say, runs rampant in Lord of Columbia.

 
A: It’s an entertaining contemporary fantasy with many influences, but politics is most definitely one of those. If one loves a good, entertaining read, and wishes to learn the principles of liberty, it’ll be worth a look come September.

 
Q: And you decided to self-publish Lord of Columbia?

 
A: After seeking through publishers, I concluded I wanted to do my own thing. It’d be like having my own business. I sought advice from many writers and authors, and the common denominator is publishing companies are going to make you change elements, or their editors will recommend it. But I wrote my trilogy with plotlines, themes, and characters for a reason, and to synchronize this work won’t do it justice.

 
Q: Is it a vanity thing?

 
A: Of course not. I’m not going into this with the goal of writing the next bestseller. Far from it. Lord of Columbia will anger both the Right and Left, cop apologists, nationalists, militarists, Trump and Obama apologists, certain religions, and die-hard conservative evangelicals, because there is some magic involved. More people aren’t going to like this book than those who’ll love it.

 
Q: Why does it have a chance?

 
A: It’s a complex storyline with numerous character arcs, not just the main character. It’s fantastical, perhaps familiar settings to fans of certain works, some twists and turns, some entertaining and others emotional, but one powerful message: Liberty.

 
Q: Why now? Why not become an author later? Or even a writer?

 
A: Why not now? If there’s one thing I’ve seen the last fifteen or so years, since I was in, eh, sixth or seventh grade, it’s the way people just give up on their dreams. The children we once were resides within our souls, in their deepest depths, and those dreams never die.

 
Q: It’s like someone who takes what someone else gives them?

 
A: An employer, or a government entity. Work forty hours a week, or fifty even, and I’ll give you a salary and benefits package. Boom, you’re set for retirement. You work all your life in something you never wanted, but they pay well, and they take care of you and your family. And as a society, it’s like it’s a win-win, because we’re conditioned by our parents, teachers, and peers to think this way. Then, thirty or forty years fly by, and you wonder what could’ve been. What could’ve happened had I just taken the first step?

 
Q: Why not just stick with fitness?

 
A: It’s become way too corporate-based. When I first entered back in 2012, it was trending that way, but during my time in Weirton, we were able to avoid the corporate hammer, or at least I was. I was a trainer, and nothing else. These days? I’ve become disillusioned. It’s always upgrade your clients, sell to this individual, sell to that individual, raise the training draft this high, your people are seeing results, why aren’t they upgrading? It’s all a numbers game to these people, and you’re going to make them a lot of money. They don’t know good training, only client-Stockholm Syndrome. The mark of a great trainer is to work one’s way out of a job. We, as a society have been conditioned to be dependent. Well, why not make people independent in their fitness lives? These gym corporations don’t see that. They only see numbers. It’s a numbers game, and when the numbers game got too great, I had zero interest in continuing.

 
Q: Is this why the time is right?

 
A: It is. And I understand the time it takes to become a great writer. It takes time, so is a side job necessary? Of course!

 
Q: Would you want to become a Pepsi Guy?

 
A: (laughs) I don’t know about Pepsi, but if I make a living, a brief living for a time, selling products I see as beneficial to people instead of poisoning them, I’ll do it.

 
Q: Like a GNC?

 
A: Sign me up! I’ll be a…Health Enthusiast, or whatever they want to call me.

 
Q: What other avenues are you looking at for your writing career?

 
A: Many. I wrote a recent post on the subject on My Freedom Flame. It entails numerous cash flows one can take, but the truth in the matter is we need to dedicate full-time hours to this. Many think they can do this part-time. Sure, for a side-income. But if you want to make a living off it, build your brand, put in the hours, I don’t care if it’s 70-80/wk. Do you want it or not? It’s that simple.

 
Q: Is there an ulterior motive to your writing?

 
A: It’s a passion, but I think what stopped me from pursuing it before now was fear. Let me tell you, you’re going to make enemies when you spill your thoughts onto a screen. People will look at and think of you different. When you read, research, and take notes regarding sensitive issues, like how Donald Trump was once and still is part of the Rothschild Network, how John McCain is a CIA asset, and how both their campaign bosses, Rick Davis and Paul Manafort used their lobbying firm to lobby with Russian oligarchs but against Vladimir Putin, it’s going to raise eyebrows and people you once thought as friends will talk. Family, who’ve always had your back, may turn on you. But, once you let people know who you are, a massive weight is lifted off your back. You can finally be you.

 
Q: So, what’s next for Todd Matthews? After September?

 
A: Well, my next work, Comeback Kid, the first book of an unrelated trilogy, will hit the online bookstores and print-on-demand in early December. It’s in the inspirational market, which my online posts like to utilize via my Twitter account, also called My Freedom Flame.

 
Q: What can we expect from you on Twitter and other social media platforms?

 
A: Inspiration and seeking the truth, more than anything else. Using my writing to spread ideas far and wide, to as many souls as possible, to retake liberty in all four corners of the world. I have faith we will succeed.

 
Q: Thank you for your time.

 
A: Thanks a bunch.

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Courage Trumps Worry

Why Worry Will Keep You Stagnant While Courage Springs You Above and Beyond

Before I begin I want to let everyone know this article wouldn’t be written without a powerful video from Stefan Molyneux of Free Domain Radio, which he made yesterday documenting ‘five years later’ after being diagnosed with an aggressive case of lymphoma. If anyone reads this article, please find him on YouTube to get an in-depth look of what today’s article is all about.
Molyneux states in his video the importance of leaving a mark in the world after death, meaning people can state in a eulogy this person was this, this person was that, but we really didn’t know what they believed in or how they impacted others by the tens of thousands. Perhaps they impacted their tiny communities by doing good works, but the reality is such souls set themselves short.
Why?
Here’s the point where many state such individuals made a living, considered themselves to be working or middle class individuals, were the heart and soul of each get-together be it at a ballgame, a bar, a movie, or wherever, and didn’t want anything else, but this is where they’re wrong.
Human beings are natural population pleasers and we’ve always been so. When we’re young, don’t we want fame, recognition, or an everlasting impact?
And I don’t mean this in a bombastic way.
If you said ‘no’ to this question, you’re lying to yourself. You wanted to do something great. You may’ve had it in you to do something great, but at the end of the day, greatness stagnated as you became bogged down by benefits over costs of living a normal life, security over freedom, and the cognitively conditioned mentality politicians will take care of us because they know what they’re talking about and we’re not smart enough to tackle complex issues.
For me, the more complex, the better. I may forget to do laundry or to perform basic tasks, but I’ll never forget John Bolton’s mantra back in the early 2000’s when he was praying for an Iraqi invasion and got his wish. And now, history repeats itself, with fearmongering propaganda Iran hasn’t lived to the billing of the 2015 nuclear agreement.
Is the government correct?
They’ve been wrong about Iraq, Libya, and Syria. They’re wrong about Iran.

 

 

Enter the Writer

Oh, the hardest part of writing is to pucker up the courage needed to get started. It’s not editing, rewriting, or even critique from other writers in a group. No, the hardest part is finding the courage to begin writing and to pour your heart onto a page.
Furthermore, some of us (like myself) will write about sensitive issues others dare not touch. As I’ve stated previously, I once conducted a great social media experiment where I used my Facebook friends as props, sharing my opinions regarding the most sensitive issues. I’ve unveiled issues concerning inconvenient truths such as:
1) America’s foreign policy has never once protected our national security since the Cold War began and we create enemies just to sustain bases to uphold our military-industrial complex. If you want proof on the matter, check out how much money the military-industrial complex lost since peace has broken out in the Koreas, which I’m cautiously optimistic will remain.
2) Most Americans are cognitively dissonant when it comes to patriotism versus nationalism. Most believe they’re being patriotic when they support unconstitutional wars, give up their individual liberties after they’re fearmongered into believing an outside threat is about to take them over, which never happens. They believe they’re patriotic when they accept security and trust police, whose job it is to enforce such unjust laws like unconstitutional DUI checkpoints. In fact, any right a “patriotic” politician tells them to give up, they believe it’s in their duty to do so.
3) Speaking of duties, Americans believe it to be patriotic to, as in the words of Donald J. Trump, “bomb the hell out of other nations and take back our oil.” Wait, who’s invading who again? Our oil? Dude, the Middle East isn’t in the Continental U.S., we don’t have a right to Iran’s or anyone’s oil but our own.

 

 

The above, plus many other issues is what I as a writer have either written about on my blog, have taken the dagger to the chest when it comes to sharing this content with my friends (which has burned bridges), or am writing in allegory form in Lord of Columbia.

 

 

Courage Trumps Worry

Why?
Why can’t we all just be happy and keep worrying?
Because worrying will never get anything done. Worry will hinder your success because you’ll continually think about the insurmountable task ahead like writing a contemporary fantasy book trilogy, and when the trilogy is written, all the editing that comes with it. And after the editing, all the book promotions, selling, and hoping someone buys the work, sees the message, and spreads it to their peers, and it’s just too much work!
Or is it?
The hardest part is getting started.
Once you get started, not just with writing but with any passion involving courage, it’s smooth sailing. The critique will make the work better, ditto for the editing, and ditto for your marketing. If you took your time and invested hardcore into making sure every aspect of your book or book series is perfect, it’s going to go further than you ever believed.
But you must not worry, and just get started. And it goes with any passion at any given time. Don’t worry but get started. Begin not tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year. Begin right now, this minute, take all your worries and throw them out. And replace such worries with courage.

Your Passion Makes You

The Issues You Hold Dear Deserve to be Heard

 
What is it about libertarian principles that I hold so important I feel they need to be heard through my writing, social media posting, and in my upcoming trilogy, Age of Columbia? Well, I can write a book about it, but former Congressman Ron Paul beat me to the punch and has done a fantastic job.

 
But, why not conservative or liberal?

 
Why libertarian?

 
What do we believe in?

 

 

Lies by Washington

 
Everything Washington is against, to be honest. We’re non-interventionist, believers in false flags, fiscally conservative, pro-free market (real free market, not the crony stuff we see here in the States), we don’t like taxes of any kind, we’re not believers in safety nets but we do love charities, and last but never least, we believe in the Bill of Rights.

 
Well, the Bill of Rights have been usurped in the United States. They tell us what we can and cannot say in public, our right to bear arms is threatened daily, police checkpoints violate the fourth and fifth amendments, we’re detaining people without due process for suspecting them of criminal acts, we’re being taxed at gunpoint, federal laws violate the tenth, and I’m just getting started on the erosion of liberty in America.

 
So, I’ve taken it upon myself, as others have, to write, speak, and broadcast about the erosion of liberty in America.

 
What are other ways we’re seeing our freedom taken away?

 
If you follow my blog, you know I’m anti-public school. Vladimir Lenin once said to give him four years to teach children and the seed he’s sown will never be uprooted.

 
America has given our government thirteen years to plant the seed of socialism and communism within its youth.

 
Want more fun?

 
During the Vietnam War era, college students (many from the minority elite) were exempted draft status due to their status as college students. The poor kids got to go and fight communism while those with money stayed home to get more indoctrinated into communism, fueled by the collectivist Left.

 
So, my antagonizing of the Left and Right are just this: both the Left and Right are pro-war and pro-US intervention. This can be proven when George W. Bush started several conflicts in the Middle East, while a secular regime in Libya was overthrown by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton only for an extremist regime to takeover which is now participating in a slave trade. Today, Donald Trump is beating war drums with Russia, Iran, Syria, and even Cuba, which many libertarian experts are saying this is the closest we’ve been to World War III since the Cuban Missile Crisis back in 1962.

 
It’s an interesting time to be alive. Many say it’s a dangerous time to be alive, but each era has had its pandemics. It’s an interesting time to be alive. At the push of a button, one man or woman two-thousand miles away can do some serious damage at any given time. It’s dangerous, yes, but interesting. This will go down in history books, and at the very least some are predicting this is Cold War II.

 

Relating to Passion

 
So, my passion for writing intertwines with history and politics. Age of Columbia is a conflict between an American Empire resembling force and a budding Constitutional Republic. It’s a story of a fight between America as it is today, and America as the Founding Fathers envisioned it. It’s Libertarian America versus America the Establishment.

 
It’s America versus America.

 
My passion is getting the libertarian message out into the public atmosphere. We must realize the importance of the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. We must remember what public school teaches us and why, parents, if you’re reading this, I believe nothing is more detrimental than sending your children to these political prisons.
I’ve talked to people who’ve been homeschooled, and the results speak wonders. Their vocabulary and grammar are off the charts, their spectrum is broadened to the point they’re proficient in philosophy, free market economics, financial planning, the works. They’re more successful and the “lacking social skills” many pro-statist public school teachers preach is the biggest myth you will ever hear.

 
Parents, I urge you to seek out the Ron Paul Curriculum, which teaches real history, such as the real tensions which led to the American Civil War among others (states rights versus strong, centrally-planned government), math which your kids will use throughout life, and much more listed in the above paragraph. I’ve studied this program and I wish it were around when I grew up, but my parents never would’ve pulled me from public school. Sadly.

 

 

Don’t Worry About Others

 
Hey, people think I’m off my rocker when I talk this way, but others realize my sanity. Put it this way: when you release your passion into the universe you’re going to have naysayers. You’re going to have people try to bring you down to their level, because they’re not courageous enough to speak about important issues. Either that or they don’t care, which couldn’t be more dangerous.

 
Your friends may turn on you. Some will accuse you of being an attention seeker. Others will tell you to grow up and get a real job. They’re societal drones, and nothing more. They’ve already accepted and bowed down to their governmental or employer overlords. They hand taxes over while being held at gunpoint. Their governmental overlords tell them they own land, and in some cases personal property, but you’re going to be paying taxes on it until death does its part. They give you public social security to hold you up and force you to bow down and put all your trust in Big Brother.

 
And they’ll call you crazy. In my case, I’ve been labeled anti-patriotic because I question my government’s domestic and foreign policy. I’ve been called anti-military because I don’t believe in military-intervention. I’ve been called a Middle Eastern and Russian apologist because I don’t believe the media is telling us the truth on all issues regarding them, one good example can be last weekend’s alleged chemical attacks.

 
So, be ready to make a few enemies, but in doing so you’ll make many more friends, friends who think like you and are on the same mission as you.

Born to Write

Our Message Matters

We were born to write and writing itself is an addiction like none other. Many of us writers have a message we need to spread to the world and the best way for our voices to be heard is through our typing. We speak through the words we pen to paper or type on a screen. We each have an important message to relay to others and while our messages may reside on opposite ends of the spectrum, they’re equally important.
We all have a desire that draws us in. For a few of us, such a desire draws us in. For myself, spreading the message of liberty is of utmost importance so listening to the Liberty Report and reading from the Cato Institute, Free State, and Free Thought Projects are sacred times. For you, the message may be something else; you may be on the conservative or liberal side of the spectrum, and that’s okay. Our opinions deserve to be heard.
If we’ve written manuscripts or have published full-length novels, we may have an overall theme in our work. The theme can be anything, and each main character has what’s coined a story-worthy problem, something that makes the story worth reading. What are the lessons your characters must learn and what were they really looking to gain from themselves? This makes the story, but it also makes your message come to life before a reader’s eyes.
Now, I know some of us may be shy about spreading our message. What will our friends, family, peers, co-workers, and others think? Don’t be afraid to burn a few bridges, as more bridges, better, sturdier bridges, will be built in their place. Never be shy about voicing your opinion. It deserves to be heard. Again, I don’t care if it differs from mine. We’re all unique in this world and differences in opinion will make us unique.
When we spread our message, I always advise others to do sound research. I love to read an article or watch a video before diving into my analysis regarding any subject. Always have a source to back up the claim; that’s important. If your message is a work of fiction, you can always say what influenced you to write the work.
Take my manuscript trilogy, Age of Columbia, for instance. In the first book, Uprising, the main character is an ignorant college athlete who inadvertently crosses the imperialism poisoning his colony. When this happens, the story is set in motion.
But, what motivated me to write Age of Columbia?
Age of Columbia stemmed from the History Channel miniseries, Sons of Liberty, and I wondered what a revolutionary war would like in modern times, with fantasy elements involved since I love fantasy. I’ve been a history buff my whole life and the American Revolution had been my favorite area of study since high school. The Founding Fathers and U.S. Constitution have always captivated me, and my political views are a direct interpretation of how I feel America’s Founders would interpret any given law.
For you, your message may be anything in your works that you find worth telling an audience about. Again, your message may differ from mine, but always keep your influences in mind when writing your story.
And finally, remember your message is important, even if your friends and family find it irrelevant. Someone is going to find it relevant. Look at America today and think of your own vision for America. We may have different visions for America, but at the same time, our voices deserve to be heard. When it comes to finding America, we can relate to certain groups of people who share our passion, whether on the left, right, or middle of the political spectrum. Good luck to all of you and may you spread your vision far and wide.

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