Thursday, March 07, 2013

Free State Astroturf

         
                                     
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The creation of the Free State Project was announced in an article in “The Libertarian Enterprise,” in 2001. The announcement came from Jason Sorens, then a Ph.D. student in political science at Yale. Sorens got a BA in Economics and Philosophy at Washington and Lee University, a prestigious private college in Virginia. He then moved on to Yale, where he earned his Ph.D. Sorens went on to teach one course “Secession and Autonomy Movements” at the New School University in NY. He was also a lecturer at the Yale PoliSci Dept, before settling in as an assistant professor of political science at SUNY Buffalo. He’s also an affiliated scholar at the Mercatus Center of George Mason University.

Sorens’ original Free State manifesto bemoaned the failure of libertarian candidates to get elected, and proposed the creation of a project where like-minded people would “establish residence in a small state and take over the state government.” After that: secession. From the inception of the FSP, secession was part of the plan. As people bought into the plan, a vote was held to determine what state to move to. The top choices were NH and Wyoming. Former NH Governor Craig Benson (the Voldemort of the NHGOP) invited the FSP to move to NH. In 2004, Sorens held a press conference at the American Enterprise Institute’s offices in Washington, DC to announce that the move was beginning. Yes, that’s right. The American Enterprise Institute. We’ll come back to that.

In the beginning the Free Staters were full of bluster, happy to announce they were coming here to take over. They moved into the town of Grafton and created a lot of trouble with the locals. After a lot of negative publicity, they went underground for some years. During that time they rehabbed their image, and stopped talking about taking over and secession. They moved their target dates back a number of times. These days the website tells us that “The purpose of this cooperative migration is to create a freer, better society through the electoral process and cultural change.” The migration, by the way, calls for 20,000 people to move to NH as part of the FSP.  Carla Gericke, president of the FSP, recently announced a massive fundraising effort in an attempt to ensure that move happens by 2015.

Aye, there’s the rub. The Free State Project has been attempting to create the illusion that they are a grassroots organization, just lassoing little libertarian lambs and suggesting they move to NH, and be peaceful purveyors of liberty and freedom. The Free Keeners, (an FSP subgroup) have gotten attention for smoking pot and going naked in public. The diversion clowns have captured a lot of media attention, while the serious business of the FSP has been completely ignored.


This is not a grassroots movement. The Koch brothers, the far right billionaire brothers who fund Americans for Prosperity, as well as the American Enterprise Institute, have funded Jason Sorens’ scholarly work. They fund the Institute for Humane Studies that funded Sorens. They also fund the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, and they fund George Mason University. If Dr. Sorens were a racecar he’d have KOCH written all over him.

A guy named Peter Eyre helped the Free Keene group along. Before he went to Keene, Eyre interned at the Cato Institute (funded by Koch Bros) and went on to become a Fellow at the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation, and then to the Institute of Humane Studies – another Koch project. It’s no accident that he turned up in Keene as part of the FSP.

So, why are the Koch Brothers funding a group that intends to invade and occupy the state of NH? Politics. There’s a first in the nation presidential primary coming up in 2016. The new FSP target date is 2015.That’s no coincidence. The forces behind the FSP have their eyes on that prize. We’ll also have elections for 2 Congressional seats, a Senate Seat, and the entire NH state government. The NH House with our unwieldy volunteer legislature is easy pickings – easy to get their activists elected, especially in the far right southern reaches of the state. Once elected, even a small group of malcontents can easily bond with the larger group of malcontents known as the NH Republican Party. They can move into cities and towns and have profound influence.

This year in Weare, the police overtime budget was cut by $10,000. The vote was 24-23, with Free Staters making the difference, and later congratulating themselves on their accomplishment in saving taxpayer dollars. Immediately after that, FSP President Carla Gericke dumped a 32-page lawsuit on the town, thereby negating any savings that might have occurred.

In Keene, at a sparsely attended school district deliberative session, the Free Staters helped pass a budget that eliminates a full time athletic director, an English teacher at the high school, foreign language classes for the 5th grade, and a district wide program for gifted and talented students. Lots of FSP backslapping after that! Education isn’t necessary for the masses – only for overlords.

In Grafton, the town budget was cut by 10%. A vote to reduce by 20% failed by one vote. This isn’t strategic cutting, this is chainsaw budget reduction. This is more roads and bridges failing. This is what can happen in your town if you don’t pay attention. This is why we all need to know who candidates are. These are people who don’t care about our cities and towns or our state. Their goal is to take over and dismantle our state government, paving the way for Koch Brothers sponsored neofeudalism.   

Carla Gericke announced that the FSP would be applying for non-profit, tax-exempt status. This reeks. This is a faux-grassroots group, attempting to hide their activities behind tax-exempt status. Their stated goals from the beginning have been to invade and occupy our state, and dismantle our state government, and then secession. That’s an inconvenient truth now, hence the need for the non-profit smokescreen.

There’s an irony inherent in all of this. The Free Staters march in and cut budgets, and that ensures the further decay of the NH infrastructure. The worse our roads and bridges get, more our quality of education diminishes, the likelihood of businesses moving to NH decreases in direct proportion. Taxachusetts and Vermont are creating jobs, while NH is losing them, despite our tax-free status. The FSP will be opposed to the kind of investments the NH economy needs, thus ensuring the failure of their own project.



© sbruce 2013
This was published as an op-ed in the March 8, 2013 edition of the Conway Daily Sun newspaper. 


Note to Free Staters: The comment section of this blog is heavily moderated. Don't expect to see your long libertarian tirades published, or your complaints about how I hate freedumb and libertea. Don't bother bleating about how I'm engaging in censorship and I'm afraid of you. This is my blog. I own the content. Think of this as a microcosm of the free market you folks claim worship. It's mine. I can do as I want with it. I choose NOT to give FSP grifters free advertising space. 


76 comments:

Anonymous said...

Isn't this the way the Third Reich crawled it's way into power? And through sheer fear and intimidation battered a mindless public into submission? I say that this "outfit" reeks of sedition, terrorism and treason. Round 'em up and jail 'em. Ultimately it appears their goal is to overthrow everything this nation originally stood for and some sane souls still believe it does. These individuals are treasonist mutineers, attempting to hijack local governments in an attempt to overthrow and establish a completely anti-democratic system. This is the time for us villagers to get out our pitchforks and run them out of town. Disgraceful and appalling.

Elizabethj48 said...

Thank you, Susan. I appreciate you shining the light on Free Staters. I was not aware of the Koch brothers involvement. More people need to know their goals and be very vigilant when voting for candidates in NH, including local positions like School Boards. If they have their way, we won't be living the American Way in NH much longer.

William Kostric said...

Lol. Are you ever going to write anything original or just keep regurgitating the old "Two people a decade ago worked for an organization that received money second hand from a source I don't like therefore the political opinions of 1,200 people I've never met and never got a dime of that dirty Koch money are all somehow tainted"

This rubbish has been refuted so many times you should be embarrassed to put your name on it.

nellewrites said...

Well said. Particularly ominous and irksome is their willingness to obfuscate.

Anyone who runs for office by way of lying doesn't deserve to hold the office. If they believe their pov to be so superior, put it out here in the open for discussion, including when any of them runs for office. Let others critique and rebut.

It's as if they believe the other 1.3 million in this state are irrelevant.

susanthe said...

Thanks William. I bet you still think the Tea Party was a grassroots movement, too.

SnowDog991 said...

There is so much misinformation here that it's hard to know where to begin. So I'll just say a couple of things:

1) There is no Koch money. Zip. Zero. Nada. Maybe Sorens and Eyre worked with previous Koch projects, but there's none here.

2) The FSP is so far removed from secession that we don't talk about it. It rarely comes up. I don't know how most FSPers would vote on that.

3) There are no plans to move by 2015 so that we can prepare for the 2016 elections. Getting the rest of the 20,000 to sign up by 2015 will probably not get anyone here by 2016 who could affect significant change.

4) Moving to NH changes us, as well as it changes those around us. We hope to make the state more tolerant, more friendly, smaller, and less aggressive. It's that simple.

susanthe said...

Snowdog: There is no MAYBE about Koch funding Sorens and Eyre.

FSPers talk about secession all the time. It's all over various forums.

As for 2015 - ha! hahahahaha!

You can attempt to deny the stated goals of the FSP all you want by using language intended to obfuscate - like "moving to NH changes us." Flowery phrasing doesn't change the stated goals of the FSP.



susanthe said...

Dear Free Staters - a reminder:



Note to Free Staters: The comment section of this blog is heavily moderated. Don't expect to see your long libertarian tirades published, or your complaints about how I hate freedumb and libertea. Don't bother bleating about how I'm engaging in censorship and I'm afraid of you. This is my blog. I own the content. Think of this as a microcosm of the free market you folks claim worship. It's mine. I can do as I want with it. I choose NOT to give FSP grifters free advertising space.


Also - personal insults aren't likely to make me feel all warm and fuzzy about posting your comments.

Hunter said...

Susan, it saddens me that you don't want a better world. That is truly all that 'freestaters' want. :(

Anonymous, you said, 'it appears their goal is to overthrow everything this nation originally stood for'. Let me ask you, this country stood for minimal gov and max freedom. THAT is all that 'freestaters' want! So tell me, anonymous, do you like the new 15cent a gallon gas tax? THAT is the kind of 'more gov' that people in the fsp are opposed to.

susanthe said...

Hunter - Do you drive on NH roads and bridges? You want to reap the benefits of public infrastructure, without paying for the upkeep. That's one of the many reasons I refer to Free Staters as grifters.

nellewrites said...

>>This nation stood for minimal government and maximum freedom.<<

Hmmmm... seems to me we saw a lot of bills 2011-12 that proposed limiting reproductive rights. Others maximised gun rights.

In my experience, there isn't a desire for minimal government, it is for government that suits a given group's purpose, and the Free State folks do have a purpose, an agenda they would implement. I doubt they are for anarchy, the inevitable result of truly limited government.

We have a duty to care for one another. No one achieves anything absent the help of others. No one. Our tax rates are quite low in relation to the 1950s. Wages are stagnant, but profits are skyrocketing. I find it amusing how government, which is after all us collectively, is considered evil while corporations, which can in fact be everything people fear government might be, get a free pass and in fact support to further their power.

Finally, on guns... we see what unrestricted gun ownership achieves... dead children.

There is a middle ground to be had, a place where my rights end at yours and the reverse, a place where we recognise our achievements are entwined with the work of others, where we must work together.

We are in this together, and it does in fact take a village.

Meee said...

Roads are paid for by gas taxes which are a pay for use fee which libertarians agree with.

Hunter said...

Susan,
I've driven all around the country and New Hampshire has some of the best roads that I've ever driven on. That aside though, as I hope you know, government is VERY inefficient. Whether it be 'not be disciplined in finding the best and most cost efficient contractors and materials, to paying unnecessary overtime, to standing around, to nitpicking irrational regulations that cost the state millions. The fact of the matter, is if they have millions at their disposal that they didn't have to earn (they took by force through taxes) then they aren't going to be cost disciplined.
What's more, is that most gas taxes do NOT go to the roads and bridges. They go to fund other gov projects.
Here a great book by Walter Block http://www.amazon.com/Privatization-Roads-Highways-Walter-Block/dp/193355004X
Again, NH some of the best roads in the nation.

Emilie said...

Thank-you, Susan. My experience with FSP members is that they want limited government, unless it involves my uterus or equality for LGBT folks. Or poor folks. The Koch bros are behind all that is wrong with our society right now.

(And if you think that the Founding Fathers were about "freedom", defend slavery, please)

Hunter said...

On a personal note, Susan. I truly hope that you see the truth about the 'why' of gov someday and that you and your children (if you have any) aren't destroyed by gov. Because, to speak bluntly, that is the only end result! Just look at NY or NJ or CA or The Roman Empire. THAT is the end result and THAT is what 'freestaters' want to prevent.
Take care and best wishes. - Hunter

JerryC said...

Hunter. You fail to recognize that this country began as an experiment for a better world. It's a work in progress, and has been for almost three centuries. We, as a nation, have decided that change is part of the experiment. The world is different than it was when this nation began when we were all expected to get out there and fend for ourselves.. The country has progressed and the people have decided that with progress comes change. The PEOPLE have made those changes. PEOPLE have died for those changes and PEOPLE are willing to fight to maintain an even playing field so ALL can participate in this experiment. Our country, and certainly our state, is NOT for sale to the highest bidder. One must assume that left to the FSP we'd be paying a toll at every bridge we crossed, educating our children in the spare room because there is no freedom in public education, and we'd all be toting firearms because there would be no need of laws in this utopia you propose...we'd just be free to make our own rules. A better world indeed! Buy yourself a large parcel, build a wall around it and live there and be as free as you like...just don't try to talk me into joining you.

Anonymous said...

Hunter, though I realize your belief is very deep-tissue, and that no amount of actual historical fact could *possibly* convince you that your belief is wrong; but it needs to be said - you are very incorrect about what the United States originally stood for. Go read the articles of confederation, and then go read the constitution. There's a reason we beefed up the federal government.

Also, if you don't want to pay for the upkeep of NH roads, don't drive on them.

susanthe said...

Meeeee - not this bunch of libertarians, it seems.

susanthe said...

Hunter - NH has the 11th worst infrastructure in the United States. I did, however, very kindly allow you to flog some book I have no interest in. Feel free to thank me.

susanthe said...

Hunter - spare me the evangelizing. You'd do well to try not to sound so sanctimonious. One of the big mistakes that Free Staters make is assuming that those who dare disagree are stupid, or just don't understand.

Anonymous said...

if they are Libertarians why don't they run as such?? Too much work. Weare NH has Lisa Wilbur who runs every year as a Libertarian and she does it properly by gathering the signatures and I admire her for that. She is honest RetaM

nellewrites said...

Ooh, another goodie, government is inefficient.

Really?

First, we believe in people participating in government. That alone is different than the running of a corporation, so if you wish a dictatorship, we're done with this discussion before taking a step further.

That said... the Social Security Administration is not an example of inefficiency. Yeah, I know you all will say 'but it has financial issues ahead at some point in the future'. That part is a function of politicians tinkering with the tax rate and level of income that funds it, not a measure of how it runs. The near economic collapse of late 2008 demonstrated once and for all the private sector would be a disastrous way to run SS.

And as for Medicare, same thing. I'll add Medicare sets the bar many insurers follow in terms of practises.

Our armed forces, another example. I see many on the right just love to say 'best ever in the world' and then they turn around and give the 'government is inefficient' comment.

Earned benefit programmes are a positive to society. Health care should be another added to this mix.

Why? The private sector does some things well, government does other things well. The private sector is no solution to something that should provide service to everyone in the country, because it will try to marginalise and even exclude those who produce the highest costs in favour of where it can make a profit. In terms of what we need it to accomplish the private sector is in fact what is inefficient.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for telling it like it is, Susan. Free Staters can split hairs all they want over Sorens and his funding. The real issue is their DISHONEST attempts to get into our State House without revealing their full agenda. We saw it again this year when a few of them got "clever" and ran as Democrats. Very few have the courage and integrity to run as the libertarians they are, on the platform they espouse (the one they like to deny exists). ASK YOUR CANDIDATES. Bring a video camera. Hold them to it.

Fumble Bum said...

"We hope to make the state more tolerant, more friendly, smaller, and less aggressive. It's that simple."

No. What is that simple is that NH used to be a lot like this. You all would know this if you didn't just move here and immediately try to change it to suite your own selfish, no-compromise, absolutist ideology.

You know, back in the day, no one came in here and told (yelled at) us about how to live and, for the most part, we left each other alone unless someone was in need. No one used to try to take over. If someone behaved that way, they didn't fit in, where not well thought of, and where NOT invited back to Sunday pot-luck.

FSers should keep that in mind.

Tesha said...

In NH, any Legislator can write a bill, every bill goes to committee and is readied for the full House to vote on.Last Wednesday at session a bill came to the floor that would allow any 10 people to remove themselves from the local school district and form their own... Taking all their school taxes with them. This "freedom" would destroy public education in NH... There is one group working toward killing public education, that would be ALEC and the for-profit groups within. This group is heavily funded by Koch.

Either the FreeStaters are part of the plan on purpose, or are being used... It doesn't really matter which... The outcome is the same. They are poison.

Anonymous said...

While I'm sure the Koch brothers couldn't be happier with this, I don't see much evidence of their involvement beyond funding Sorens' chair. Maybe the 501c(3) is to help enable more direct help from their ilk. Also, I think of astroturf as getting out folks with shallow commitment to a cause du jour - which is definitely not a description of the FSP. I wish it was.

Alex McFall said...

Ok, I'll start off by saying I'm a libertarian and have only moved back to NH in 2009 after being in the midwest of a decade. The Freestaters do not represent all libertarians. I plan on digging a little deeper to form a full opinion on them (not sure if I fully agree with you, but you've at least made me think about it.)

I'm posting just to remind people not to lump all libertarians in with Freestaters. Please keep that in mind. Some of these comments come dangerously close to total generalization and that can only hurt the whole process.

I'm a libertarian, and I hate the concept of wholesale purchase of this state as much as you.

Julia Riber Pitt said...

Susan, a left-libertarian friend of mine told me that the Koch brothers fund scholarships to Porcfest (or at least, used to fund). He told me that the scholarship he was given as a Students For Liberty member enabled him to come to Porcfest back in 2010. If the FSP isn't linked to the Koch bros directly, they definitely are indirectly.

Anonymous said...

I'm funded by the Koch brothers? Where's my check?

Anonymous said...

The initial (and only) FSP press conference was in New York City in 2003, and well covered, e.g. by Reuters. The FSP was ignored by reputable libertarian organizations (e.g. Cato still turns up its nose). At the American Enterpriuse Instute Jason Sorens sat on a panel at a federalism conference in 2004.

B.D. Ross said...

"There’s an irony inherent in all of this. The Free Staters march in and cut budgets, and that ensures the further decay of the NH infrastructure."
>How many Freestaters have had the power to "cut budgets" and "ensure further decay of" infrastructure at the state level?

Anonymous said...

More insidious is that an early FSP organizer worked on the film The Matrix. The Wachowski brothers are known libertarian agitators (they also made the movie V for Vendetta, celebrating Guy Fawkes, anarchism, and terrorism). This FSP organizer was actually on their payroll during the FSP's creation, and then he quietly disappeared.

susanthe said...

Well, anonymous - how do you support yourself? Do you have an actual job? That would make you something of an anomaly in the Free Stater community.

susanthe said...

Other anonymous - I'm not sure what your point is. The FSP press conference was held at the American Enterprise Institute's DC headquarters.

As for the Cato Institute, you do know who founded it, don't you? And who one of their major funders is?

susanthe said...

Surely you're aware Mr. Ross that cities and towns vote on infrastructure spending. At town meeting thousands of people all over the state will be making those decisions, next week.

As for how many Free Staters on the state level? You'd know better than I, since you're one of them. Free Staters who have run for office are hardly ever upfront about that with the electorate.

Brandon Ross said...

"Surely you're aware Mr. Ross that cities and towns vote on infrastructure spending. At town meeting thousands of people all over the state will be making those decisions, next week."

Yes, people do vote. But that ignores the question: are they doing it; and do they have the number of votes to slash those budgets all over; further keeping in mind that reducing a budget does not necessarily mean it is causing infrastructure to crumble.

"As for how many Free Staters on the state level? You'd know better than I, since you're one of them. Free Staters who have run for office are hardly ever upfront about that with the electorate."

But... but you just told us they were "marching in" and cutting budgets? Okay, so who's doing it? Surely you have facts to back up your assertions.

Hardly ever up front? No, I don't think that's quite the case. Rather, they don't put a disclaimer on everything that says, "I am a Freestater." Freestaters don't typically think of themselves like that; it's just not a descriptive word, unless you mean someone who moved to NH because of the Free State Project.

If you want to know if someone moved to New Hampshire as part of the Free State Project, just ask them. I'd be surprised if anyone denied it.

But there is a difference in you being lazy, and a candidate not disclosing every minute detail of his or her life story. Do you want to know how many candidates who are Free State Project participants are gay too? Or their religions? Or whether a female candidate has had an abortion? Sure those things are private. But certainly some voters would be interested in knowing.

Here's the thing: public polls continue to show that most NH residents don't know what "Freestaters" are--and don't seem to care. If it doesn't actually mean anything to the electorate, then it's a waste of print space. That's just a practical campaign issue.

If you--and your friends--want to know, ask someone.

susanthe said...

That's a nice little diversionary tap dance Mr. Ross. Has there been a group of 20,000 women who have had abortions who have announced THEIR intent to invade and occupy our state? Or 20,000 gay folks? Unitarian Universalists?

Yeahright. That's a pretty clumsy attempt at analogy, Mr. Ross. However, it's easy to grasp your point: it's okay for Free Staters to be secretive about the fact that they're part of a group whose stated intent is to invade and occupy NH, and dismantle the state government, and then threatening to secede.

They are magical unicorns who don't think of themselves "in those terms."

They don't think of themselves as Free Staters? That's a steaming pantload, Mr. Ross.

If the FSP were the benign and delightful project that you all claim that it is, you'd trumpet your Free Staterdom from the rooftops. Everyone would want to be a Free Stater, which is hardly the case. Even right wing newspapers are embarrassed by you.

What polls are you referencing, Mr. Ross? I notice you failed to disclose or provide links to these alleged polls.

susanthe said...

Dear last anonymouse = be sure to wear your tinfoil hat with the shiny side facing out, to deflect the alien rays.

Bob Robertson said...

I find it funny that people who want less govt are somehow trying to tell other people how to live.

It simply does not follow.

Less govt, less intrusion into people's lives, is less of telling other people how to live.

So the objection that Free Staters are trying to tell other people how to live is illogical. It is contradictory, and false on its face.

Now, not liking what the Free Staters espouse is perfectly understandable. But to object to something they're not doing is foolish and dishonest.

susanthe said...

BD Ross - sorry,that was too long winded and too dull for me to post. Come back when you're willing to provide the polling data you referenced.

That said, BD - thanks for providing me with the opportunity to post a link to the original Free State manifesto. http://www.ncc-1776.org/tle2001/libe131-20010723-03.html

This is the stated intent:
"Once we've taken over the state government, we can slash state and local budgets, which make up a sizeable proportion of the tax and regulatory burden we face every day. Furthermore, we can eliminate substantial federal interference by refusing to take highway funds and the strings attached to them. Once we've accomplished these things, we can bargain with the national government over reducing the role of the national government in our state. We can use the threat of secession as leverage to do this.

I understand that the FSP is trying desperately to pretend that is no longer true. Bullshit.

Bob Robertson - if you have something relevant or interesting to say, please do. That was neither.

Brandon Ross said...

"That said, BD - thanks for providing me with the opportunity to post a link to the original Free State manifesto. http://www.ncc-1776.org/tle2001/libe131-20010723-03.html

This is the stated intent:
"Once we've taken over the state government, we can slash state and local budgets, which make up a sizeable proportion of the tax and regulatory burden we face every day. Furthermore, we can eliminate substantial federal interference by refusing to take highway funds and the strings attached to them. Once we've accomplished these things, we can bargain with the national government over reducing the role of the national government in our state. We can use the threat of secession as leverage to do this."

--Hey, what's that author's note at the top that was added in 2004?

Didn't disclose that inconvenient part to your conspiracy-theory narrative, did ya?

Now who's being secretive...

susanthe said...

Uh, BD Ross? I posted the link. The link that gives Soren's attempt to add a disclaimer. It's all right there at the LINK I POSTED. That would give lie to your attempts to label me as dishonest and secretive.

BUT - speaking of dishonest, you have yet to produce credible polling data to back up your claims.

I won't be posting any more of your comments until you do.

Robert said...

So... basically anything that YOU do not agree with is bankrolled by Koch brothers.

Also, you do realize that Hitler would have been considered a progressive? They are all for government control over people and resources.

Anonymous said...

You think FSP'ers can be influenced by the Koch brothers? You haven't met any of them have you? The things being done in NH are more about voluntaryism and separating from the State. Not exactly the typical Koch agenda.

susanthe said...

Robert: Thank you for an excellent illustration of FSP reading comprehension ability and mindset.

Pablo Koh said...

I like that copblock.org and Pete Eyre are fighting the militarization of local police departments. I think they also support same sex marriage, anti war groups and drug legalization. I think there are many people from the left that would support much of their activism.

susanthe said...

Dear Anony-Mouse: Reading comprehension fail. I said the Koch Bros are funding the FSP.

The average rank and file Free Stater isn't a party to all of that, any more than the average Teabagger was party to the funders of their faux-grassroots movement.

susanthe said...

Pablo - there are areas of agreement, it's true. BUT, those areas don't mitigate the fact that most of the Free Staters who get elected to the NH legislature represent a very far right agenda.

Those areas of agreement do not mitigate the FSP agenda: to invade and occupy the state, and dismantle the state government and threaten to secede from the US.

susanthe said...

Poor Bob Robertson. You're miffed that I didn't initially post your dull observations. You should have been grateful, since all they really expose is a failure to comprehend what you read.

Since you decided to follow that up with calling me a liar, I decided to put your failure up there for all to see.

Anyone who can actually read and comprehend what they read will be aware that no where in my op-ed did i say anything about any of the things you're complaining about.

susanthe said...

That's right, Bob Robertson. If I don't like it I don't post it. If you'd bothered to read what I wrote, you would have seen a warning to Free Staters right there in the blog. You see, Bob, it's my blog. I own the content, and in this little corner of the Free Market (an altar you people claim to worship at) I get to do what I want with it. That includes refusing to post commentary that is rude, obscene, or otherwise objectionable. And that, Bobola, is a big category. It includes bores, phonies, and the generally obnoxious.

You didn't point out any lie on my part. If you could refute my facts, you would have. You didn't like me pointing out that the FSP is a fake grassroots movement, funded by far right conservative dollars. Because you can't refute that, you attempted to obscure that by making silly accusations and engaging in name calling.

Sadly, for you, the only thing you've unwittingly pointed out is that you either didn't read my editorial, or you failed to understand it. Or both.

NJ FSPer said...

Tesha, we have/had that concept in New Jersey, regarding school board secession. New Jersey is one of the best educated states, aside from some urban areas unfortunately. The irony is that it ends up more expensive because each school district hires a superintendant for 6 figures.

Julia Riber Pitt said...

Obviously, not all free statershave links to the Kochs. I never asserted that. I merely stated that the Koch bros and their organizations have funded FSP-related events.

Also, I would argue that most of the policies FSPers are pushing - namely reducing funding to infrastructure and education - would turn businesses away from NH, regardless of how low the tax burden is. A huge lie propagated by free marketeers is that it's only big corporations who benefit from the state. The truth is, smaller businesses benefit a hell of a lot from the state since they receive all sorts of subsidized goodies (infrastructure, utilities, education, etc.) which they would have otherwise had to pay for out-of-pocket. Example: here in Windham everyone is required to have well water since there's no centralized water source. This makes it very expensive for businesses to set up here since costs go through the roof once businesspeople have to buy enough land for a well, septic, and leechfield and you have to pay for digging the well. Plus you have to maintain the well and ensure that your water doesn't get contaminated. Many people in this town have said they'd prefer a centralized town-controlled water source like they have in Salem, just because it would be a hell of a lot cheaper in the long-run. That's just one example but I could provide more. Bottom line is that there's no way a decentralized market system would ever last, since there would be zero incentive to preserve it.

I didn't know NH ranked so poorly for infrastructure. I was told by some free staters that NH ranked #1 for infrastructure in the US and that infrastructure in the northern part of the state was better than infrastructure in the southern part. What a joke. Manipulating statistics is just sad.

susanthe said...

Robert,

Let me try to explain this for you again. This is my blog. I own the content. I thought you Free State types approved of private owners doing whatever they wished with their property?

In my case, that means I chose not to post comments that are insulting or inane. You haven't offered up anything interesting - just a lot of talking points. And then there's the dishonesty. No one would spend 24 hours trying to get onto an obscure blog to defend a group of people they aren't connected to.

It's not censorship, Robert. It's PRIVATE OWNERSHIP.

susanthe said...

Dear Anonymous - I don't accept invitations from people so rude that they can't leave their names.

If you can refute my position, do so right here on MY turf.

Eric Freerock said...

Your accretion that Free State Project participants are "far right" is way off base. Just about every position that people take are for maximum freedom as long as their actions harm no one else. There are many positions that would be considered "far left" such as gay marriage, legalization of drugs, and every other civil liberty but because they also understand that all the government services you want are paid for under threat of violence so they're opposed to taxes and spending you call them straight up "far right."

Do you have something against people being able to find voluntary solutions for our problems instead of forcing the minority to do something for the will of the majority?

FSP members are not asking for a free ride. They want services to be provided on a voluntary and consensual basis. If someone wants to use the roads then they should pay to use them, if they don't use the public schools they shouldn't have to pay for them. Why do you think you have a right to my property and money? I earned it, just because you voted that you're entitled to it doesn't make it so. You steal from your neighbors when you vote to spend money on something. Money that you extract from your neighbors whether they agree to what you're spending it on or not.

susanthe said...

Eric Freerock - I'm not going to respond to your post, since it has nothing to do with the topic at hand. That said, perhaps you can explain something to my readers and myself: Why didn't you go somewhere to build a Randian paradise from the ground up? You had the chance to show us what this volunteer utopia could look like.

If you don't want to live in a civilized society, that's up to you. No one is forcing you to.

Of course, I know the reason why you didn't go build your own place - you folks are lazy grifters who prefer to initiate a hostile takeover, because you can't be bothered to do the real work of building.

You bleat about paying taxes being theft.
What would you call the invasion, occupation and takeover of an entire state?

I call it armed robbery.

Julia Riber Pitt said...

Eric, I know of many left-libertarians in the FSP who are basically free market socialists (as in, people who advocate a totally free market where workers rather than bosses are in control of all the industry). They and their ideas are frequently marginalized within the project and many FSPers like to pretend they don't exist. Take a look at my experience tabling with them back at 2012's Liberty Forum:

http://propagandalalaland.blogspot.com/2012/02/swimming-in-belly-of-best-liberty-forum.html

Do you have something against people being able to find voluntary solutions for our problems instead of forcing the minority to do something for the will of the majority?

The thing is, majoritarianism happens in every system, especially in this free market utopia you and other free staters envision. In a market, producers get signals about what to produce by what sells. So every time a consumer goes to the store and purchases a particular commodity, they are "voting" for that commodity, that store, and that producer with their money. However, they're also "voting" for the materials that the product was made from, the companies' behaviors and policies, and contributing to a culture where purchase of that product from that company are socially accepted. Sorry, but micro-structures DO, in fact, affect macro-structures just like the macro affects the micro. Now, whenever you go to the store to buy stuff, are you really thinking about the wider affects your consumer choices are having? Probably not, which is why most of this "vote with your dollar" democracy gives shitty results. In other words, it's not about abolishing democracy but about revolutionizing it in theory and practice so we can have a system where everyone gets a say and no one is subjugated to anyone else. Take a look at how the Spanish Anarchists organized if you want a real-life example.

Julia Riber Pitt said...

Hunter said: "Here a great book by Walter Block http://www.amazon.com/Privatization-Roads-Highways-Walter-Block/dp/193355004X
Again, NH some of the best roads in the nation."


Laugh at Walter Block. Isn't he the "economist" at the Mises Institute who advocates "voluntary slavery" and who defends pimps and slumlords?

And like I've said before, heavy infrastructure spending is a factor that attracts businesses - especially small business - to a particular area. It's much cheaper for smaller companies to rely on state subsidies than it is to pay for roads out-of-pocket. If the latter were the case, smaller towns would find it difficult to receive and maintain roads since a smaller population would equate to less funds for the company. Even though I fully support decentrism as a social anarchist (libertarian socialist) I will argue that some centralization will be needed if things are going to be done well.

If you're going to have privatized roads, bridges, highways, etc. in your new system you're going to have to come up with a theory of property that doesn't lead to the governing principle being revived (that is, if you want a truly free and anarchistic society). How long until those landlords who own and control the roads become akin to states with a monopoly of violence over a given territorial area? How do we prevent these companies from their own mini-governments? After all, not everyone can just build their own bridge or highway; that shit takes FUNDS and lots of them.

Eric Freerock said...

It has to take place somewhere. Everywhere is already "claimed" by some government so NH was the logical choice since freedom is already important to people in NH. FYI I'm a New Hampshire native and can't wait for everyone to move so our lives can be freed from the government's clutches.

susanthe said...

Eric - what about those who don't want to live in your Randian paradise?

Other Free Staters have essentially said, "tough shit, we're taking over - if you don't like it, get out." Is that your attitude?

This is an armed invasion and occupation, with the stated intent of dismantling our state government.

What if there is resistance to the FSP takeover?

Julia Riber Pitt said...

"NH was the logical choice since freedom is already important to people in NH."

Who's "freedom" are we talking about here, exactly?

How is NH more libertarian than other states? The tax burden here really isn't all that much lower than elsewhere, if that's what you're talking about. My parents are paying a ton of property tax, my mother's small business is taxed, interest payments are taxed, and so on.

And I'll reiterate Susan's point: what if most NHites don't want to live in a rothbardian paradise? What if most NHites desire a completely different system than the one free staters are calling for? Why should free staters get their wish as opposed to the majority of NH residents? Every system, including a "voluntaryist" one, will require some force to keep it in tact. For "anarcho"-capitalists (and I insist on putting the first half of that term in quotations, since anarchy cannot exist in capitalism) the real issue they face is preventing capitalist property from morphing into de facto mini-states. How long until landlords and insurance companies become governments in their own right, and how long until polycentric law produces city-states? After all, wouldn't most people flock to the nicest landlord who governs on the nicest law code, so how long until you see a city-state emerging from that (and one ruled on a monarchy nonetheless)? With that said, I'm wondering how free staters are going to bring about their rothbardian system if the vast majority of NH residents don't want it. Perhaps you could explain.

Eric Freerock said...

"Tough shit, get out" is not my position. You should free to organize how ever you want so long as you are not forcing others to participate. No one is stopping you from doing that. The difference between myself and those who want government to provide things is that I believe people should be free to choose what organizations they contribute and belong to. Democrats, Republicans, Green party, Constitution party, etc... want to force you to be a participant, at gun point if necessary.

Free State Project participants are not forcing you to live in a "Randian paradise" and they are NOT the ones threatening to use armed force, they're working to prevent others from using force against their neighbors. I want to peacefully live together and opt out of your programs and services I don't agree with, see value in or use. I see you have a cost of war counter on your page, I'm guessing you don't want to have to pay for the wars, I don't either. I much rather be able to pick and choose what gets my funding and what doesn't. I rather pick and choose what services I want to use and subsequently pay for. I don't expect to use roads for free, I don't expect fire services for free. I ask again, what entitles you to the fruits of my labor, my money or my property? Just because 51% of the people say they are entitled to my money doesn't make it right or moral. What will happen if I don't want to pay for your pet project that I don't even use? I don't ask you to pay for the addition on my house so why are you forcing me to pay to build a baseball field in your park? I believe all of our interactions should be free of force, fraud or coercion I would hope you agree. I'm simply trying to remove those transactions of force, fraud and coercion.

This whole article is guilt by association. I'm sure if we dissect anyone's life we can find some sort of connection to an organization of ill repute. That doesn't make you an undercover operative for said organization. It's very conspiratorial.

Eric Freerock said...

Julia - So the will of the majority trumps the rights of the minority? I don't find that acceptable. Slavery, segregation, serfdom, anti-homosexual laws, anti-drug laws, anti-food of choice laws, anti-abortion laws, etc... Just because the majority says so doesn't make it right. If someone doesn't harm anyone else, trespass against them or damage their property then what business of yours is it how they choose to live? You're advocating the government use force to take my money for things you want to spend it on. I'm advocating that the government stop taking money from my neighbors and let them decide for themselves how best to us it.

Why does everyone like to use "freedom" in quotes? I'm talking about my freedom to live how I see fit and YOUR freedom to live how you see fit. What freedoms do you believe that Free Staters are trying to subvert? I don't have a right to tell you how to live. You should be free to live however you feel is best for you as long as you harm no one else. No one is stopping you from setting up a school system, no one is stopping you from creating parks, no one is stopping you from building roads, no one is stopping you from having a fire department. The only thing your being stopped from is forcing others to go a long with your system even if they don't want to.

There should be no initiation of force to maintain any system. Force is only permissible in the defensive. The "force" being used by those who oppose coercive government is defensive to the force that was already initiated by those who feel they're entitled to micro-manage everyone's lives. I much rather give 35% of my pay to charities and organization I believe in than give it to the government to spend on useless junk. I want to be able to have the money to voluntarily help my neighbors in need, help those who need help to educate their kids, or sponsor a little league team. I just don't think it's right to force someone else who doesn't want to do those things to do so.

This can all be solved if I'm allowed to opt out of your system. I'll pay a fee to use the roads, I'll pay a fee to have a fire department, I'll pay a fee to use the parks, I'm not going to pay for your school if I'm not going to send my kids there since I need that money to educate my own kids, not yours. Who's the one asking for a free ride again? Not me.

Anonymous said...

Just letting you know, the largest free stater havens in NH are:

- Manchester
- Portsmouth
- Keene
- Grafton/Upper Valley (Claremont-Lebanon-Sunapee Area)

Other locations with sizable numbers of free staters are:

- Nashua
- Concord
- Seabrook
- North County

Extremely relevant video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_jO25S3N38

Please be aware!!

Julia Riber Pitt said...

Eric, I'm pointing out that majoritarianism is going to be the case under every and any political and economic system. How do we avoid it? You practice democracy every time you go out with friends and decide on what to do. The real question we should be asking ourselves is not "do we want majoritarianism?" but rather "what kind of majoritarianism do we want to be present in society?" Obviously, you completely misunderstood my argument.

As well, I never ever said I supported government taxation once. In fact, I said the exact opposite: I'm a social anarchist who advocates complete personal autonomy, something which capitalism does NOT emphasize or promote. Under capitalism, you are subordinated to your boss, your landlord, the banker who lends on interest, etc., all of whom steal the product of your labor, just like the state when it taxes.

"Democrats, Republicans, Green party, Constitution party, etc... want to force you to be a participant, at gun point if necessary."

Sorry but you're making the mistake that one loses their free will just because a "gun" is pointed to their head. This isn't the case. If there's a gun pointed to my head I still have the free will to dodge the bullet or attempt to do so. Likewise, under statism you can avoid taxes in a number of ways: live in someone's basement while working on the black market and so on.

"What freedoms do you believe that Free Staters are trying to subvert?"

Free staters are trying to implement a society where capitalist property relations become the new state, as in, individuals are now paying taxes to a landlord instead of bureaucrats. How would this make society freer at all? If you actually read texts by Rothbard, Hoppe, Walter Block, etc. you would see that they advocate a kind of quasi-feudalism, simply due to the property relations they advocate. Then read some classical anarchist texts by Proudhon, Bakunin, Kropotkin, Goldman, Rocker, etc. and compare their visions of a free society.

" I much rather give 35% of my pay to charities"

And I highly doubt that charities would exist in a free market, simply because the amount of cutthroat competition between firms in such a system would give people plenty of disincentives to give money away. Plus you'd have added overhead costs like maintaining well water and solar panels and paying for roads and other utilities out-of-pocket. Also, David Beito is a liar. For one thing, he does the typical right-libertarian bait-and-switch when it comes to information about the Gilded Age: on one hand, mutual aid networks emerged in this market that was oh-so-free, on the other mass-monopolization of capital during that time only occurred because the market was very unfree. So which is it? Of course, Beito is just a propagandist for neoliberal austerity, so I wouldn't think much of him.

Eric Freerock said...

"As well, I never ever said I supported government taxation once. In fact, I said the exact opposite: I'm a social anarchist who advocates complete personal autonomy, something which capitalism does NOT emphasize or promote. Under capitalism, you are subordinated to your boss, your landlord, the banker who lends on interest, etc., all of whom steal the product of your labor, just like the state when it taxes."

Then I don't see why we're arguing. I'm not promoting capitalism per se, I'm advocating personal choice and freedom. I'm all for you choosing to have personal autonomy. You can be or not be subordinated to your boss, landlord, banker, by choice, not by force. No one shoud be forcing you to work for anyone, no one should be forcing you to live somewhere or prevent you from owning property, and no one should be forcing you to choose one funding method over another.

How do we avoid majoritarianism? I have no idea but I find dictating to someone else how to live unacceptable. Why don't we work on convincing others?

"Sorry but you're making the mistake that one loses their free will just because a "gun" is pointed to their head." Coerced action is not free will. I find coercion unacceptable as well. If a mugger comes up to you with a gun and says 'Give me all your money or I'll shoot you' both of those outcomes involve an initiation of force against you and both outcomes are undesirable as you are an unwilling participant.

"Free staters are trying to implement a society where capitalist property relations become the new state, as in, individuals are now paying taxes to a landlord instead of bureaucrats. How would this make society freer at all?" I don't see this as the goal of free staters. Or at least for me since I can really only speak to me. Where do these landloards keep coming from anyways? The FSP is pretty clear about the goals being the 'creation of a society in which the maximum role of civil government is the protection of life, liberty, and property." I don't see how this falls outside of either of our ideals? I think we should be free to choose to live in the society we want to live in, others do not have to participate if they don't want to and are free to be part of a different one. Sharing the same general land mass shouldn't hold us back from peacefully doing this.

"And I highly doubt that charities would exist in a free market, simply because the amount of cutthroat competition between firms in such a system would give people plenty of disincentives to give money away." We have charities now in a complete unfair and unfree market. I don't see why they'd go away. I'm sure there are voluntary solutions to be had should a problem like that arise though.

Eric Freerock said...

On topic of the article at hand I'm going to give Pete Eyre a call to see what he has to say about your allegations.

susanthe said...

Eric Flintstone - Eyre's affiliation/employment with the Koch Bros. is a matter of public record. Here's a source you probably trust! http://libertapedia.org/wiki/Pete_Eyre



Eric Freerock said...

I'm not questioning Pete's previous associations, I already know all of those. Ofcourse his main focus was on Drug Policy which you probably agree on him with. I'm questioning your assumption that he's in New Hampshire under direction and influence of Koch. "It’s no accident that he turned up in Keene as part of the FSP." I'm pretty sure he showed up on his own because he believes in the project and freedom. He landed in Keene because that's where the media producers are.

But still, I question why you label libertarians as "far right" when they're not. There are things that the libertarians and democrats agree on and there are things the republicans and libertarians agree on. Being far left socially and far right fiscally doesn't make you "far right" since you're implying that's where the religious nut jobs who want to rule your life live which liberty loving individuals are not. Democrats want to rule your fiscal life and republicans what to rule your social life, I want to rule no one's life but since you're bent on ruling me I have no choice but to resist.

susanthe said...

Eric - I understand that connecting the dots from the Kochs to the FSP is offensive to you. I admire your determination to believe that somehow, magically, after working for Koch funded institututions, the FSP was born, with absolutely NO connection to the funding sources of the creators.

I label libertarians as far right, because that's who they identify with. Ron Paul - far right wing Republican. The Free Staters who were elected in NH (with only one exception) have all allied themselves with the GOP. Joel Winter is the only one who has not. The other fake Democrat Free Staters have. The FSP House members in 2011 were even worse, all allied with the nasty stew of Bircher/Teabagger/FarRight that now comprises the NH GOP.

Yesterday Free Staters Dan and Carol O'Brien voted against a woman's right to bodily autonomy and medical privacy. They voted to stick their neocon nanny state right in a woman's uterus. So did FSP sympathizer/buddy JR Hoell.

I am absolutely flabbergasted that you people are in denial that the Koch agenda is different from that of the FSP. It's all the same thing. They want gummint gone, they want taxes gone - they want everything privatized - just like you boys. Why? So that they can be your new neofeudal overlords. If you think it's because they love "liberty" and "freedom" think again. The Koch brothers worship at one altar : GREED. They are happy to use angry white boys who never managed to get over Ayn Rand to help them get what they want. Getting you all here to take over the state that has the first in the nation primary is all part of the plan.

Tell me, Eric - if the economic system you describe is such a brilliant way to live - where has it been successful?

You seem fairly intelligent, so I'm flabbergasted by your naivete. You really think that you can smash the state, and turn NH into Randia - a paradise of voluntaryism, where everyone works hard and helps those who need it - voluntarily of course - where rules and regulations aren't needed because everyone will voluntarily do the right thing, and where everyone is shiny and free and equal.

Have you never read any history? When you get rid of the old boss, you get a new one. Your happy little band of miscreants will be no different. In fact, for many of you it will be worse, because you were true believers who got taken by the forces behind this grassroots sham.

Eric Freerock said...

If people are specifically being paid to do whatever I'll choose not to associate with them. Until then, for Pete Eyre specifically, I can only go by the actions that he takes and the words that he says. On a personal level I agree with most of what Pete has done and said publicly and to me privately. I have no reason to believe that he isn't doing what he is doing under his only free will.

I'm not a fan of Ron Paul. Do you consider drug legalization, pro-choice, pro-gay marriage far right ideals? I don't. I'm in favor of those things.

"Yesterday Free Staters Dan and Carol O'Brien voted against a woman's right to bodily autonomy and medical privacy." Well I disagree with them as I don't share those ideals. They're trying to run someone's life, I am not in favor of that at all.

"I am absolutely flabbergasted that you people are in denial that the Koch agenda is different from that of the FSP." I'm an individual who happens to agree with the statement that the maximum role of government is to protect life, liberty and property. What anyone else does is on them. If there are people who want to rule others I don't want to associate with them. The people I talk to believe the same as me. Instead of saying the "FSP" did this or that, why don't we say this person did this or that? Just because Obama favors drone strikes doesn't mean I should say the Democrats do, that would be unfair to label a group base on the actions of an individual. Koch can do whatever they want but I make my own choices. My choice is to be free and if there are people who share in my choice then I will gladly work with them which is how the members of the FSP that I associate with feel.

"Getting you all here to take over the state that has the first in the nation primary is all part of the plan." I was born in NH as were my parents, grandparents and great grandparents. I don't want to take over, I just don't want to be forced into being part of it. Just because I was born here doesn't mean anyone has rule over me. I don't want to tell you what to do, I'd just like you to return the courtesy.

"Tell me, Eric - if the economic system you describe is such a brilliant way to live - where has it been successful?" When have we not had coercive government? I'm not asking for some market system over another, I'm asking for the ability to choose without being a criminal. If I want to pay someone to cut my hair who doesn't have a license from the state what do you care? It's not about an economic system, it's about a culture where we believe that it is wrong to agress against your neighbors. Do you disagree that forcing your neighbor into your system moral?

"You seem fairly intelligent, so I'm flabbergasted by your naivete. You really think that you can smash the state, and turn NH into Randia - a paradise of voluntaryism." I'm flabbergasted that you think a system of forced participation is superior to a voluntary association? I'll say it again, I'm not stopping you from taking part in whatever system you want AS LONG AS YOU ARE NOT FORCING ME TO PARTICIPATE. Voluntary doesn't mean there are no rules and there are no punishments for inflicting harm on others. Why can't we both live side by side and choose what system we want to participate in? Why do you want to force me to participate in yours just because I was born and live within a certain land mass? I don't want to force you to participant in mine.

I should be free to do whatever so long as I harm no one else, trespass against them or damage their things. Do you have a problem with ME? Me specifically, wanting to be free from rulers? I'm not asking for a hand out or to be a freeloader. I'm asking to be free to live my life how I choice and for you to respect my right to do so as I respect yours. I just don't want to participate so I'm asking you to not force me to.

susanthe said...

Eric - you aren't seriously trying to suggest that Ron Paul is pro-choice and pro-marriage equality. I assure you, he is not. He's a racist, a misogynist, and a homophobe.

I find your whole manner pretty annoying. You keep accusing ME of wanting to oppress you, and then you're all pissy that I think we cannot live in peace.

I have no power over you. I'm a fucking blogger, not a lawmaker.

You are part of an armed invading force that is coming to take over the state - yet you bleat about peaceful coexistance? Can you REALLY not see the contradiction there?

If you people want a voluntaryist society, go build one. There's plenty of unoccupied country in the western part of the country. Taking over a state is a forcible action. There is no way that the entire population of NH will consent to turning over the state to you. So what happens when they/we try to throw your asses out?

If you want to live in Randia, that's just fine with me. I don't want to. I don't think that the average NH resident will be willing to subsidize FSP grifters who don't want to pay for services but will happily use them. Just as they do now.

Stop bleating about how you're a poor forced victim of coercive gummint when you are part of a group that is engaging in a forceable takeover of the state of NH.

Tell me, Eric - if the FSP is so equality minded, why are there so few women? (Yes, I know you have a token woman as president) Why is there no diversity? Why is the FSP essentially a group of angry white guys?

You keep alluding - so let's be clear. I am not a Democrat. Democrats are far too right wing for me. I'm a lefty. We may agree on drugs, US military imperialism, and other social issues - but that's where it ends. I believe STRONGLY in public education, in public parks, in public property, in public libraries. I believe in the common good. I don't believe in the selfish, every man for himself world of the FSP.

Eric Freerock said...

I'm saying libertarians are pro-gay marriage and pro-choice. Ron Paul is a douchebag.

I'm a native of NH so I'm hardly invading, I'm simply trying to free myself. Anywhere but here attitudes will be anywhere people go. You don't want to subsidize those who aren't asking to be but you then ask us to subsidize your projects.

Unless it's a woman related movement women are under represented in any movement. Minorities as well. That seems to be pretty typical. Go to PorcFest, there will be plenty of women there.

Public anything comes at a price. People lose their family homes because they get taxed out of them. My parents left where they lived because their property taxes went from 6 to 20 thousand a year in less than 15 years. Who can afford that. I build myself a house and 10 years later i can't afford your taxes, then i either have to sell or you take it from me. That's cold.

susanthe said...

Eric - you're becoming tiresome. As I've pointed out, I am not a legislator. I'm a writer. I did not create NH's abysmal tax structure, nor do I support it. ARE WE CLEAR ON THIS, ERIC? CAN YOU HEAR ME YET?

I'm in favor of a state income tax that would replace the majority of the property tax. If you lose your job, your income tax would go down. Not so with property tax.

Of course, you don't want to pay any taxes, just grift off those who do. And the FSP is allied with the NH GOP who LOVE the property tax, and actually increased it during the last legislature.

I have no interest in attending Porc Fest. The hijinks of drunken frat boys hold no appeal for me. I see the FSP as a white boy party that holds little appeal to racial/ethnic minorities, women, or gay folk.

Of course, women are underrepresented. Women have to work too hard to hang around reading Ayn Rand and nattering on about fanciful economic theories. Women have to live in the real world. They don't have time for bullshit.

You keep telling me how prochoice and progay libertarians are. That isn't borne out by the members of the FSP that have been elected to the NH state legislature.

I'm going to ask this again:

You are part of an armed invading force that is coming to take over the state - yet you bleat about peaceful coexistance? Can you REALLY not see the contradiction there?

What will happen when there is resistance to the occupation?

It's a shame you people are too lazy to go build your own collective - and that is the bottom line. The FSP isn't exactly populated with doers. It's full of talkers.

Julia Riber Pitt said...

I just wanted to point out something that many libertarians probably don't know: libertarianism, as it has existed in the US for the past 40 years, has a long history of being corporate-sponsored. Have any of you read Kirzner's biography on Ludwig von Mises by chance? In it, Kirzner describes how Mises received funding from groups like the Rockefeller Foundation, The National Bureau of Economic Research, the National Association of Manufacturers, and Foundation for Economic Education, among others. With this funding he was able to write his magum opus Human Action (which I'm certain the vast majority of Free Staters have read).

If the FSP really is some corporate plot, I wouldn't be all that surprised. I'm still a bit agnostic on the issue since I know that most Free Staters have no affiliation with the Kochs or any of their organizations, but I wouldn't doubt it if the project in general came into existence due to corporate interests.

Julia Riber Pitt said...

One more thing:

Mr. Freerock, if you ever decide to return to this blog, please take the time to read this little piece I penned whilst on vacation.

http://www.propagandalalaland.blogspot.com/2013/03/anarchists-want-to-force-you-into.html

In it, I have pretty much responded to the notion of "you have your system, I have mine". Feel free to leave me a comment or two on my post.