Book Review: Passport To Freedom

Passport To Freedom:  A Guide For World Citizens, by Garry Davis

I liked this book a lot more than I expected to.  I expected to find at least some of what I found, namely that the book was written by a crank who happened to be a globalist, and to be sure there is plenty of that here.  Yet unquestionably I found someone in these pages, which are part memoir and part how-to guide, who if I cannot see myself as being like him I can see at least as being like people I know.  This is the sort of person who would talk your ear off at some kind of social event about the illegality of the Uniform Commercial Code and the potential of invoking the ninth amendment to increase freedoms by declaring certain actions unconstitutional.  One is convinced of the author’s seriousness, for no one would risk dozens of jail sentences and awkward and embarrassing extradition proceedings without being utterly sincere.  On the other hand, he sounds like someone it would be difficult to deal with, a man who used his celebrity to be a thorn in the side of agents of nation states like the lowly border agents dealing with his World Passport [1].  One almost feels sorry for those poor functionaries trying to do their job with a minimum of interest in matters of geopolitics.  Almost.

This short book of less than 200 pages is divided into three sections with numerous small chapters.  After opening with a short prologue, the author begins with a discussion on the desirability of reclaiming one’s sovereignty from nation states.  The author manages to effectively demonstrate his sincerity by combining a discussion of relevant international law (like the Universal Declaration of Human Rights), his own experiences with border crossing and being a deliberately stateless person.  He then discusses crossing frontiers both from a theoretical and personal perspective, seeking to encourage others on how to gain acceptance for the World Passport and how to deal with rejection.  The author then spends the third part of the book talking about the global contract, showing how World Government began, and how it is related to the phenomenon of sister cities [2] and mundialization that the author helped to spearhead.  The book closes with some appendices that show the people involved at the time of the book’s publishing in 1992 with the “World Government” along with a list of a nation-states and a facsimile copy of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that the author discusses at length in these pages.

Despite the fact that the author is more than a little bit of a universalist crank, there are at least a couple aspects of this book that are highly relevant and more than a little interesting.  For one, the author’s advice on how World Passports can serve the interests of refugees seeking to have an identity of their own choosing rather than one that is forced upon them by nations unwilling to grant them sanctuary and even forcing them to remain in situations where their lives could be at stake is something that is certainly timely in our own contemporary situation where there is significant conflict between the fervent desires of refugees to move into Western countries and the growing disinterest the people of those countries have at dealing with the threat such populations often possess [3].  On a different level, this book deals with a phenomenon I have often noticed, and that is the tendency for human authorities and fallen beings in general to show a two-faced nature of anarchy towards higher authorities and tyranny towards those perceived as lower [4].  The author portrays both sides of this tendency in his anarchical rejection of the norms of nation states in defense of the higher authority of a supranational world government, and seeing him switch between an individual thumbing his nose at the corrupt systems of the world and as a tyrannical one-world authority looking down on nation states is rather eye-opening.  If you have an interest in the lives of stateless people and have some interest in matters of globalism and different levels of identity, there will be much in this book to muse on, even if the author is not always the most likable in the way he deals with the absurdity he describes in these pages.

[1] See, for example:

[2] See, for example:

[3] See, for example:

[4] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
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6 Responses to Book Review: Passport To Freedom

  1. Pingback: Book Review: The Idea And Practice Of World Government | Edge Induced Cohesion

  2. Pingback: Book Review: Introduction To World Peace Through World Law | Edge Induced Cohesion

  3. Pingback: Book Review: Appeal To The Nations | Edge Induced Cohesion

  4. Pingback: Book Review: Global Trends & Global Governance | Edge Induced Cohesion

  5. Pingback: Book Review: Rationality And The Analysis Of International Conflict | Edge Induced Cohesion

  6. Pingback: Book Review: Principles Of International Politics | Edge Induced Cohesion

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