Where freedom still exists

November 24, 2010
Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia

One of the few absolutes that we can always count on is that change happens. It’s inevitable– people grow older and change, cultures change, countries change, businesses change, families change, etc.  Change is inevitable, there’s nothing that lasts forever.

You might even find that your own attitude is changing… it’s possible that the erosion of personal and economic freedoms that you’re witnessing in your home country has caused you to reach a breaking point… or at least start to formulate a contingency plan.

If you’re feeling this way, your instincts are telling you that something is wrong and that you need to take action; perhaps that is what led you to this community to begin with. The first steps can be difficult– it’s a big world out there, and it can be tough to know where to begin… does freedom even exist anymore, anywhere?

Yes, it does. No place is perfect, every country has its challenges.  But there are many nations with positive growth trends and governments that don’t treat their people like milk cows.

One of those countries is Chile, and if you’re looking for ideas, I strongly recommend that you consider it. I’ve been writing about Chile off and on for a while now, and for the life of me, I still can’t figure out why it’s not on the radar…

Here’s why I think you should consider it:

1) Freedom is strong. The government runs a no-nonsense operation and leaves everyone the hell alone to go on about their lives. Privacy and freedom are respected– this is not a place that is slowly turning up the heat on the boiling frog.

2) No gestapo. Corruption is extremely low in Chile, and police are actually a well-respected establishment. Rather than threaten and intimidate citizens, Chilean police forces function like well-run private security firms– applying common sense and treating people with dignity and courtesy.

Despite this kinder, gentler approach, crime in Chile is very low.

3) Economics: Chile has a low-debt, independent economy with a steady source of wealth as the world #1 copper exporter. There are also other thriving industries, such as wine, fish, and fruit, as well as an embryonic technology sector. Consequently, its peso has been one of the best performing currencies in the world.

4) Business: There is ample opportunity in Chile.  I know CEOs from fields as diverse as IT to pharmaceuticals that have made a home here due to the substantial incentive packages, strong middle class market, and transparency; the rule of law is clear– you know where you stand without guesswork or bribery.

Furthermore, taxes are reasonable, regulation is manageable, and the legal system sound.  Bottom line, the government looks at businesses and productive people as valued partners, not enemies of the state.

5) Social: Chileans are civilized, tolerant, educated people who are much closer to European heritage than Latin American.  Crime is low, and squalid poverty is largely absent from the cityscape in Santiago.

6) Environmental: Chile is very clean country with clear skies, good water, and easy seasons.  Due to the country’s long, slender shape, there are numerous microclimates and regions, ranging from temperate to sub-arctic, coastal to mountainous.

7) Immigration: Chile is very much like Singapore and Hong Kong in that they want bright, talented people to move here. Consequently, they make it easy for bright, talented people to establish residency for themselves, their families, and their businesses.

8 ) Infrastructure: Roads? Clean and modern. Mobile phones? Cost effective and dependable. Medical care? Great. Internet service? Fast and reliable. Schools? International quality. Building code? Effective and well-tested. International travel? Lan Chile flies from Santiago to numerous worldwide destinations.

I could really go on about Chile– I’m a strong supporter of the country and have selected it as a finalist to locate our sustainable community.