I found my way to the Liberty movement through the fictional writings of Ayn Rand. I therefore admit some bias when I say that the best way to get new people to explore the ideas of freedom, individual rights, and capitalism is to illustrate the points in a story. Fiction books also tend to offer great entertainment value and intrinsic life lessons, and can be wonderful gifts. Of course, it’s not always possible to get someone to read something as lengthy and complex as Atlas Shrugged. Therefore, it was with great pleasure that I stumbled across A.G. Fredericks on social media.
His Twitter biography presents him as “Libertarian, son of a US Marine, Fiscal Conservative author of acclaimed indie thrillers The Troy Standard and Liberty Gulch.” I quickly procured a copy of his first book, The Troy Standard, and found it very impressive, relaying the story of a man courageous enough to point out problems with the status quo, but who suffers dearly for his convictions.
However, the work is also an engaging commentary on Austrian economic policies. This is important, as encouraging friends or family to read an engaging story is often much easier than handing them an economic treatise or scholarly article. The Troy Standard is only 192 pages long, yet contains touching emotional drama, harrowing suspense, and action-packed thrills. In short, it is a perfect read — just add hot chocolate and a fireplace!
As stated, amidst these exciting elements, a clearly defined lesson in economics emerges. Allowing the government and bankers, the people Fredericks calls “the men behind the desks,” to control the value of money can never end well. An inordinate amount of control is granted to these men, who trade with their “fiat currency” (government-declared legal tender with no intrinsic value), giving them power over all. Both the economy and personal liberty suffer as a result. These issues affect every person within our society.
Many feel that the concepts of fiscal policy lie out of their grasp, yet Fredericks’ work makes it possible for all readers to understand these issues, and to think about them in new ways. I am sure that The Troy Standard will motivate many to continue exploring economics. Perhaps it will even inspire readers to begin the search for answers concerning bringing about the return to an accountable fiscal policy.