What is this website about?

“If one takes care of the means, the end will take care of itself.” -Gandhi

What is Voluntaryism?

Voluntaryists are advocates of non-political, non-violent strategies to achieve a free society.

We reject electoral politics, in theory and in practice, as incompatible with libertarian principles. Governments must cloak their actions in an aura of moral legitimacy in order to sustain their power, and political methods invariably strengthen that legitimacy.

Voluntaryists seek instead to delegitimize the State through education, and we advocate withdrawal of the cooperation and tacit consent on which State power ultimately depends. (more)

What is Stoicism?

Stoicism is a philosophical school of thought that emphasizes personal virtue, wisdom, and resilience in the face of life’s challenges. It teaches individuals to focus on what they can control, accept what they cannot, and find inner tranquility through self-discipline and rationality. Stoicism encourages living in accordance with nature, cultivating virtues like courage and wisdom, and maintaining a sense of tranquility even in the midst of adversity.

Stoic Voluntaryist, stoicism voluntaryism

I am proud and honored to have been a friend of Carl Watner. When he discovered that cancer was likely going to kill him, he worked to set a continuity plan in place. He selected our mutual friend to be his primary trustee, and upon that wonderful man’s inability to continue the work of The Voluntaryist, Carl named me as second in line.

It is alleged by state of nature people that the primary executor transacted with other humans in a type of money that is horrifically less surveilable than private central bank money, and so the Central Banks sent their useful innocents to harm our friend. These people feel that they are doing “the right thing” in assisting in the attack of a peaceful, helpful, and friendly humanitarian activist. During this time that our friend is being persecuted, I wanted to have a mirror version online of all that Carl created.

I will also add some of my own content and will clearly distinguish between Carl-Approved content and my own. If I forget to clearly state what portions are from Carl or that he edited, you will be easily able to tell using the following formula:

  • Is it clearly written, edited for perfection and appealing to a high-IQ person with an engineer’s mind? That was Carl’s doing.
  • Is it choppy, casual, suggestive of an author who was sadly trying to be funny, and kind of simple? That is Shepard the Voluntaryists’ doing.

Why is this website named the Stoic Voluntaryist?

I was once chatting with Carl and said, “I know you are a Christian…” When I finished my thought, he asked what made me think that he was a Christian. I didn’t know, and I asked him what he was. He said that his secondary interest to Voluntaryism was Stoicism. I have since investigated and discovered that while many of the original stoics were statists, they also had many good things to say.  Thus, the Stoic Voluntaryist. I also am interested in the things Carl was interested in, and also some others. -Shepard The Voluntaryist


With great emotion, I share with you the passing of my long-time mentor and friend, Carl Watner. He died peacefully, surrounded by his family, on December 8th after facing down cancer. One could say the cancer won, but this man represented the spirit of voluntaryism and that spirit has become more powerful than I had imagined. I believe that increase will only be accelerated as we realize that it’s all on us now. Thank you, Carl, for adding so much meaning to my life! —Dave, the voluntaryist.com webmaster


Carl Watner, long-time libertarian and proponent of a voluntary society based on private property, donated over 175 titles from his personal library to The Mises Institute’s Ward and Massey Libraries. The collection is dedicated to the literature of the voluntaryists, past and present. The collection includes a rare first edition of The Collected Works of Lysander Spooner (six volumes).


The Voluntaryist was published continuously from October 1982 through December 2020. Each issue has been archived and is available on this Stoic Voluntaryist site.

I MUST SPEAK OUT, a book-length anthology of articles from the first one hundred issues is available here or may be downloaded in pdf for free HERE.

Volume II of I MUST SPEAK OUT contains the best articles from Issue 101 forward.

Shepard’s affiliate link to these “almost there” children’s books
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