The State with the Most Freedom is Not What You’d Think

It’s an election year and if you’re anything like me, your Facebook page is exploding with with political rants demonizing or idolizing the candidates.  Actually, during this election cycle, almost no one is speaking the praises of either candidate.  Mostly, they just compare him or her to Hitler or explain how he/she will certainly spell the end of America.

WhileLAND BUYERS REPORTHow to Avoid the 3 BiggestLand Buying Mistakes-3 I hope that isn’t true, it occurred to me this morning that come January 21st, 2017, we are going to have either a President Trump or a President Clinton.  While the contest is going on, it’s easy to view the election as realistic as a reality TV series but the harsh reality is that one of these two people will be our next president.  Wow!

Between domestic politics, perpetual wars, global terrorism and the threat of another 2008-like financial meltdown, it really feels like something is becoming unhinged in this world.  This is exactly why I believe in the power of land ownership as a path to individual freedom.

We are fortunate to live in a great big country with wide open spaces where pockets of real freedom still exist.  But it’s getting harder and harder to find places where we can really disconnect, live off the land and avoid the intrusive hand of government.  Fortunately, the Cato Institute has drafted a new report to help find the best state to lay down roots.

According to Freedom in the 50 States, the Cato Institute ranks the states with the most freedom based on over 200 policies encompassing fiscal policy, regulatory policy, and personal freedom. You probably won’t be surprised to learn that New York, New Jersey and California are in the bottom five.  You could also be forgiven if you expected that states like Nevada, Arizona and Wyoming would round out the top five.  Actually, while these states performed reasonably well, none were in the top 10.


Believe it or not, the number one spot goes to a state in New England!  According to the authors, New Hampshire ranks number one because:


  • State taxes eat up only 2.8% of personal income.
  • Local taxes as a share of income are only 4.8%.
  • It is one of the best states for gun rights; there are almost no restrictions on concealed and open carry.
Here’s the full ranking but be sure to check out the online tool where you can adjust the ranking based on those attributes most important to you.


Full Ranking: 
  1. New Hampshire
  2. Alaska
  3. Oklahoma
  4. Indiana
  5. South Dakota
  6. Tennessee
  7. Idaho
  8. Florida
  9. Iowa
  10. Arizona
  11. Colorado
  12. Nevada
  13. North Dakota
  14. Wyoming
  15. South Carolina
  16. Kansas
  17. Montana
  18. Missouri
  19. North Carolina
  20. Utah
  21. Virginia
  22. Georgia
  23. Alabama
  24. Michigan
  25. Nebraska
  26. Pennsylvania
  27. Wisconsin
  28. Texas
  29. Arkansas
  30. New Mexico
  31. Delaware
  32. Washington
  33. Massachusetts
  34. Louisiana
  35. Ohio
  36. Mississippi
  37. Oregon
  38. Minnesota
  39. West Virginia
  40. Vermont
  41. Kentucky
  42. Maine
  43. Rhode Island
  44. Illinois
  45. Connecticut
  46. Maryland
  47. New Jersey
  48. Hawaii
  49. California
  50. New York