by Jeff Knaebel, Sovereign Individual of the Earth
Jeff’s posthumous manuscript titled Message From a Moral Sovereign: The Life and Death Story of an American’s Journey from Warpath to Gandhi Path was published in India in Fall 2011. A 320 page paperback, it is now available from The Voluntaryist for (**) postage paid to US addresses or (**) elsewhere, sent to
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(See Jeff’s autobiographical article, “How I Became A Voluntaryist,” at
This Declaration, made at New Delhi, India on 19 June 2009, WITNESSETH:
To the people of this Earth, my fellow human beings, my brothers and
sisters, in memory of Black Elk and Chief Joseph, and with special
respect to the Grandmothers and Elders of all indigenous communities,
I, Jeff Knaebel, hereby make this Declaration of Severance and
Dissolution of all bonds between myself and the Government of the
United States of America. I renounce my birth certificate – I renounce
my citizenship – and reject all claims of whatsoever nature made by
the United States against me. I am not government property, and I am
not a criminal. I am a peace-loving human being who is finished with
being a slave to the Corporate Warfare State. I am not a citizen of
any Government. I renounce all of them.
I hereby destroy my United States passport by which the United States
government claims control of my movement upon this earth, and thus
lays claim upon my right to exist. I will place the shredded remains
of my passport upon the monument of Mahatma Gandhi. I have chosen this
monument because it is a symbol that all mankind can recognize: of
nonviolent resistance to immoral, corrupt, and violent Governments.
By this deliberate act of rebellion and sedition, I hope to free
myself and alert mankind to the dangers it has created by obeying
Governments of the world. My refusal to remain a tax-compliant
accomplice to State murder will be considered treason against the
United States. The choice is this, or treason against human life
itself. My life is not about supporting the cold blooded murder of
women and children.
No permission is required to renounce that which I never sought in the
first place, for which I never entered a contract, and which is
imposed upon me against my will. Having declared myself not a
citizen, I am therefore not a citizen. Citizenship is either
voluntary, or it is forcible slavery.
The United States government is incomprehensibly malevolent and
destructive. It takes our money, our identities, and our lives. It
gives us back corruption, war, heinous crime, and lies. This
government has no moral right to exist. It ought to be abolished
without further human bloodshed.
The Nation State is a criminal organization which must be opposed in
its very concept. It is impossible to reform a system that is built
upon a foundation of lies and violence — one whose health and
continuance depends upon endless war. The system must be altogether
abolished. It is irredeemably evil.
The State represents a terminal disease of human consciousness that is
anti-life, anti-ethics, and suicidal for the human species. It is a
sick addictive co-dependency between its citizens and parasitic lying
murdering psychopathic politicians.
Blind obedience to incompetent, deceitful, violent and morally
depraved authority is a clear case of mental disease. Eckhart Tolle,
Gopi Krishna and other morally advanced beings have diagnosed the
United States government as pathologically criminally insane.
All political authority is arbitrary: arbitrary as to the form it
takes; arbitrary as to the boundaries it establishes; arbitrary as to
the limits of its jurisdiction; and arbitrary as to the taxation it
collects. If one refuses to bow, to obey, to pay one’s taxes, to use
Government travel documents, one will ultimately be placed in jail, or
die resisting arrest.
Even in its most equitable form, it is impossible for government to
disassociate itself from evil. The State has been conceived in
violence and is maintained by lies and violence. Its every act can
only be criminal. Unless the right to ignore the State is recognized,
its citizens become tainted accomplices in its deeds.
From the most democratic to the most totalitarian form of government
there is ultimately no difference among the powers they exercise. The
essence of the State is the threat and use of deadly force against
those who choose not to comply with its edicts.
No Government rightfully owns the territory its monopolizes. It has
stolen possession of whatever land it lays claims to. Everything it
has, the State has stolen or plundered. It prevents peaceful people
from establishing their own voluntary cooperative economic and social
relationships. The purpose of assigning nationality is to control a
mass of captive taxpayers in order to maintain the large military
establishment required to keep a citizenry in a state of fearful
submission to the Power Structure of money.
Why should a system of structurally compulsively violent political
authority be preferred to a cooperative system in which human beings
live according to the Natural Law of equal liberty? A coercive
government has no legitimate authority over me. None. Its only
authority comes through the barrel of a gun.
Is the arbitrary “legal” construct of the Corporate State more
precious than life? Is this guns-and-steel lifeless structure more
precious than living, breathing beings? This killing machine
fabricated of cunning deceitful words of legally piggily on corporate
parchment… Are we living beings or abstract symbols to be
manipulated by the Money Power? What is the “National Interest,”
other than the transfer of wealth and influence to the power elite?
What about humanity’s interest?
I write against the oblivion of humanity. I act in quest of goodness,
beauty and truth, that we may yet live.
I am not Government property. I bid farewell to the United States
Government and to the citizenship it has imposed upon me against my
will. I love life too much to be forced to participate in its murder.
The United States government is a stain upon humanity. It is a
grotesque distortion of human relations and the human conscience. It
is ugly beyond the power of words to describe. Only its end product
speaks clearly for what it is and what it does. “Shock and Awe” death
raining from the sky. Children’s blood flowing in the streets. Body
parts strewn across wedding festival grounds. A human genome
corrupted by depleted uranium and agent orange. Hiroshima. Los
Alamos Lab. The science of death versus the art of life. Torture.
Rape. Ecocide. Endless heinous crime. The most terrible Merchant of
Death in human history. Human species suicidal.
If you, people of the world, wish to support Government, then so be
it. But leave me alone. As a peaceful individual I reject your
authority imposed by violence. I reject all Government claims of
legitimacy. You and your Government do not have the right to do the
things that you do. Foremost among these tax-and-public debt financed
activities are the waging of war; the conscription of soldiers; and
the expenditure of citizens bread labor upon armaments which by now
can destroy our earth many times over. I call for an end to these
activities. I will not support such activities with my life, my
money, or my energy.
The laws of our natural world, the laws of the Great Spirit, the five
precepts of the Buddha, are morally and practically superior to
political laws. You must not kill and I must not kill. We must not
support killing. We must love our neighbors as we love ourselves. As
the Hopi have said, “From this one commandment, to respect and revere
life, come all the other commandments: to tell the truth, to share
with others, to life together in mutual support, to take care of our
children and old people, the sick and strangers, friends and enemies,
to abstain from intoxicants and adultery, not to cheat, steal, or
It is up to the individual to discern his duty to his fellowmen and to
act accordingly. No other can know my moral conscience, let alone
“represent” it in decisions of war and peace. How can another
“represent” me in voting to murder children? The first duty of love
is to do no harm. Therefore my duty of love is to renounce the State,
to withdraw from it, to quit it, to abandon it, to refuse to pay its
taxes, to refuse participation in its charade of corporate money
controlled elections, and to live my own life in search of truth and
What do you do when you awaken to the awfulness of the lies of the
State and the State of the lie? How does one negotiate with
pathological liars? How does one come to peace with his tax payment
hiring of cold blooded murder for oil and money?
Against whom, then, shall I commit treason? The brotherhood of man?
My rational mind and common sense? My moral conscience? Or the
United States government? I prefer treason against the arbitrarily
imposed rule of an organized crime syndicate to treason against
humanity. To suffer in tax compliant silence the heinous crimes
against humanity perpetrated by the United States would be to negate
whatever is within me that can be called human.
The shredding of my government permission-to-exist documents is
offered as a prayer that the government of the United States —
perceived to be a criminal organization of incomprehensible scope —
may be without bloodshed dissolved and abolished from this earth
I no longer have a Government name; I have no country, no travel
papers, no passport, and no Government identification. Under the law
of every Government, I am an illegal human being. Against this
arbitrary “illegality” I claim my right to exist as a free and
What man — or group of men — can declare another to be “illegal?”
Such men, who cannot give life, would yet take it, as lying murderers
in God’s own temple. For Power, there is no tomorrow. There are no
grandchildren. Of the good earth, there is none. There is only
Power. Persons who aspire to this are degraded, deranged, diseased.
We are insane to submit to rule by the depraved.
What shall be done with me?
If deported to the United States, the Government will subject me to
draconian penalties. Having destroyed my passport, having renounced my
citizenship, having made this Declaration, I have become a seditious
rebel to the United States Government. The United States will have no
choice but to harass, persecute, and ultimately jail me for speaking
truth to power.
On the one hand, the natural wish to live, to grow, to move about, to
be free, to act as a man. On the other hand, in order to live in this
manner with the ordinary amenities of livelihood, I am forced by
taxation to finance the murder of children who have a sacred right to
life — innocent small children who cannot conceive of the wish to
There comes a time when the abuses are so great, the mindless
destruction so wanton, the suffering so stupidly unnecessary, that one
must resist the Power of rulership with his life. I love Life too
much to participate in its murder.
I bid you farewell, those who would remain in voluntary bondage. Go
about your life peacefully, respecting yourself, all others, and the
earth upon which we live. Remember that means is to end as seed is to
tree. A violent means can never produce a good end. The truth shall
set us free. My efforts shall not have been in vain. Right always
overcomes might, even though I may not live to see the day.
Whatever happens to me, may you remember my message: Awaken from your
slumber. Realize that Government depends upon your consent. You
control yourself. You can withdraw your consent.
We must recover Respect — for life, and for each other.
Civilizations that get off the Path of Respect do not last, because
when a people get off the path, they also remove themselves from the
circle of life.
My prayer is to love and to serve. From my heart I seek to act in a
good way, in a sacred way, for the benefit of many, in support of
life, that the seventh generation of children may yet live and be happy.
The “why” of what I do is put completely to rest by the statement, “I
love.” The final answer to any question about my actions is “I
love.” What is the value of human life — this is the real question.
Executed at New Delhi this 19th day of June 2009