Liberty Forum organizer and Ron Paul's Frigging Giant, Chris Lawless addresses the crowd prior to Tom Wood's speech
If we want to Trigger the Move by 2015, it is time to get serious. This is what I told a jam-packed room before Tom Woods’ keynote address at Liberty Forum.
In a quick speech, I explained how the FSP is maturing as an organization, and laid out plans to raise $270,000, to be spent over two years, with monies being allocated to hiring staff (yep, starting with me), procuring office space, expanding our educational outreach, and increasing our advertising and marketing in order to Trigger the Move.
I am seeking 270 donors--Trigger the Move Patrons--who are willing to commit $1,000 upfront, or pledge $100 over 10 months.
Frankly, I was overwhelmed by the support and enthusiasm at Liberty Forum. Both keynote speakers, Tom Woods and Jack Spirko, pledged $1,000. How's that for a ringing endorsement! Generous donors handed me cash, checks, and even a Krugerrand. Thank you to all who gave! We raised more than $5,000 and received pledges from 13 $100x10 donors. And, thanks in advance to everyone who will give now to underwrite this crucial growth phase. Patrons, with your permission, will be acknowledged on the new website. Have questions? Feel free to email me at: email@example.com.
Liberty is rising. So said commentator Ben Swann, who the FSP sponsored in some clips last month. And nowhere is it rising faster and in a more meaningful way than in New Hampshire. Why? Because we are the practical manifestation of the philosophy of liberty.
I was particularly struck by this idea of the “practical” at the International Students for Liberty conference in D.C., where I gave a talk about the FSP. While theories were abundant at this hearteningly large conference, most lacked a practical strategy to achieve Liberty in Our Lifetime.
“Practical” means 1. of or concerned with the actual doing or use of something, or 2. (an idea, plan, or method) likely to succeed or be effective in real circumstances; feasible.
The Free State Project now has a proven track record. The idea of concentrating liberty lovers in one geographic area is feasible. The actions of individual participants is effective. We are succeeding in the real world. We are modern day pioneers, voting with our feet for more freedom. Come join the fun, come stand for freedom!
Yours in peace and liberty,
Plan your vacation for June 17 through 23, and join us at Roger’s Campground in Lancaster, NH, for the biggest liberty festival in the world. Whether it’s a black powder rifle workshop, the Big Gay Dance Party, or One Pot Cook-Off, there is truly something for everyone at PorcFest! David Friedman, author of The Machinery of Freedom, has been confirmed as a speaker, and more special guests, activities, family fun, and parties will be announced soon. Register now for just $50, and consider donating an additional $100 to support the FSP and gain access to the Speakers & Sponsors tent along with other special perks.
The 2013 New Hampshire Liberty Forum was attended by more than 500 conference-goers, making it our largest Liberty Forum ever.
Highlights included a fantastic Friday opener from the ever-classy Jeffrey Tucker, keynote speeches by Jack Spirko and Tom Woods, informative panels on jobs, NH laws, and the local start-up scene, and plenty of socializing throughout the weekend. Silver Circle premiered to a full house at Chunky’s Cinema in Nashua to kick off the weekend’s activities.
ESSAM, New York street artist who put NYPD drone posters in bus stops around the city, told the story of his art and subsequent arrest to a captivated audience. On Thursday, March 14, ANIMAL New York is hosting a benefit and art auction to help with ESSAM’s legal costs. If you can make it or are moved to donate funds (dollars or Bitcoins), visit Free Essam for more information.
Liberty Forum made the news several times over the weekend, including a front page spread in Sunday’s Nashua Telegraph! Read the Telegraph coverage here, here, and here, as well as stories from the Union Leader and NHPR and recaps from the folks at Silver Circle and The New Porcupine.
A giant thanks to the speakers, sponsors, vendors, and attendees who made Liberty Forum wonderful, and to Chris Lawless and his organizing team for putting on an unforgettable conference. Kudos to all!
One of the most exciting recurring themes at Liberty Forum was discussion around Bitcoins, a decentralized digital currency that is making waves. A large crowd gathered for the Bitcoin panel featuring Charlie Shrem, Erik Voorhees, and Roger Ver of BitInstant. First-time users and Bitcoin veterans alike were using the currency to purchase everything from mustard to caramels to PorcFest registrations.
Perhaps most significantly, a prototype of a Bitcoin ATM, which accepts US Dollars and converts them to Bitcoins, was used to exchange over $5000 at Liberty Forum. Get updates from the brains behind the machine at Lamassu Bitcoin Ventures and maybe you’ll be using one of their ATMs at your favorite local pub someday soon! You can read CNET correspondent and Liberty Forum speaker Declan McCullagh’s coverage of the groundbreaking machine, American Banker’s take, and Jeffrey Tucker’s round-up of Bitcoin and the other alternative currencies he experienced throughout the weekend.
Many “Free Staters” have two concerns when considering their move to New Hampshire: a job and housing. There is a free market solution to both of these problems which might be a good fit for some. This opportunity involves private education, which is alive and well in New Hampshire. You might even get a free lunch!
According to The Boarding School Review there are 435 private schools in New Hampshire serving 35,481 students and ranging from small daycares to large college-prep boarding schools. In general, private schools do not require teacher certification and, importantly, have many employees that are not teachers. Some schools hire dormitory staff, tutors, coaches, chaperones, accountants, landscapers, IT techs, and more.
I moved to Tilton, New Hampshire, in 1999 to take a job at a private college-prep boarding school. There are 12 such schools here with a total enrollment of over 4,000. These students include “day” students and boarders. Typically, the boarders come from all around the USA plus many from overseas. My school has had students from Japan, Bermuda, Germany, Spain, Cameroon, Poland, Guam and even Andorra, to name just some countries of origin.
Most schools provide their employees with free housing, heat, meals, internet, water and even cable TV. I live in a dormitory apartment with my family, supervise the dorm, teach four classes, and coach two seasons of sports. Our school year begins at the end of August and finishes at the beginning of June. No meals are provided in summer. There is no tenure and I am hired on a yearly basis.
Working in a boarding school is a job and a lifestyle. I walk to work. I am surrounded by teenagers. I eat in a large dining hall. I know everyone’s business and they know mine. I work on Saturdays. I get the use of a gym, a weight room, a hockey rink, tennis courts, and a pool. At the end of the month, though, I only have a cell-phone bill and have accrued lots of vacation time.
So how to land one of these jobs? There are three distinct methods. You can go through a job placement agency (Carney Sandoe is one) that specializes in placing teachers and administrators in private schools. They charge nothing or very little and only get paid by the schools after a successful placement. You apply online and they take it from there. Availability and flexibility are key factors. This process requires patience especially since you have narrowed your search to only New Hampshire.
Or you can do your own search and send your resume directly to schools that appeal to you or have openings advertised on their websites. Hiring directly saves them money so they pay attention to resumes. If there is nothing available, they will tell you and, importantly, put your resume in their files. Jobs open up all the time so that is a very good thing. I found my job using this method. I sent resumes to nine schools and got five interviews and three job offers. Your number of “hits” will depend a lot on what you can do, teach, or coach. The market is in play here; English and History teachers are in low demand. Mandarin, Physics, Robotics, and Calculus are in short supply. However, coaching a sport can make you a very promising candidate. A school that is desperate for a lacrosse coach will find something academic for you to do.
The last method is simply “Who do you know?” The private school community is small and communicative. If you know one person at a boarding school, or even someone who went to a boarding school, there is a good chance they have connections with a wide circle of people. Your second cousin’s neighbor went to Freedom Academy and just came back from his 20th reunion? Maybe his old football coach just retired and they need someone to fill his slot. Many folks at these schools are here because they have a connection.
So if you find yourself dreaming of your “Free State” move and asking where to live and what to do, maybe you could fill the Robotics/Algebra/Soccer/Tennis slot at a private school!
Outreach at the International Students for Liberty Conference
by Shem Kellogg
In a sea of bow-ties and think tank internship applicants, there was at least one beacon of pragmatic libertarian activism. FSP movers Carla Mora and Shem Kellogg and Queen Quill Carla Gericke traveled to Washington, DC, for the world's largest gathering of pro-liberty students. Over 1,000 attendees walked by the FSP exhibitor table and 23 signed the Statement of Intent. One pledger was so excited that he insisted on tweeting a photo with Carla M. And at the Young Americans for Liberty Happy Hour After Party, Carla M. invited more students to attend Porcfest X in June!
Many students already knew about the Free State Project, and some were even following the Rep. Cynthia Chase drama. Carla Gericke delivered a speech entitled "Is the FSP the ‘Single Biggest Threat’ to NH?" to a room of engaged students. She also charmed Fox Business pundit and the event's keynote speaker John Stossel into agreeing to feature the FSP on his show when we reach our 20,000 pledge goal. A great success!
From the Trenches in Grafton
by Jeremy Olson
With a total of thirty at this year’s Deliberative Session, for the first time ever, we had enough people (especially when a couple of the townies voted with us) to shift the vote on several key articles. Most importantly, we were able to cut the overall town budget back to 90% of FY2012's budget, for a total of $825,956.00. This is in line with a non-binding warrant article passed several years ago instructing the Selectmen to reduce the budget by 10% each year.
We plan to keep a close eye on how the Selectmen try to distribute the 10% cut we made. Tim C. made a very salient point at the meeting, that when faced with these kinds of cuts, statists will often distribute the cuts wherever it will cause the most pain, in order to punish the public for reducing their budget. See Wikipedia’s entry on the Washington Monument Syndrome for a famous example. So we are ready to call them out on it if they suddenly slash the road department or public safety departments, or slash the open hours for the town dump, while leaving stuff like their own "executive" budget or their debt service on unnecessary borrowing ("tax anticipation notes") untouched.
A couple special appropriations warrant articles were also reduced by 10%, and we completely neutered the warrant article to create a capital reserve fund to build a new town office. (We amended the dollar figure to zero, meaning even if the article should pass, they can't open the cap reserve fund.)
Amusingly, as the night wore on, the statists started to go home, but for the most part, the liberty-minded residents didn't! At the beginning of the meeting, votes were in the 30-to-30 range; by the last warrant article, we were down to 25 or so activists---but the other side was down to only about 15 people.
Adopt Your Block.net Grand Opening
by Marcus Thomas
At 1:00 p.m. on March 30, Adopt Your Block.net, a community-building litter removal program, will launch. Adopt Your Block.net is a once-a-month Litter Pick Up & Neighborhood Volunteer Program that encourages our neighbors to "Adopt Your Block" by picking up any trash on their street, on the last Saturday of each month. It’s a great way to clean up while meeting our neighbors.
View adopted streets on our master Google Map, or please send us your information to participate and be added to the map. T-shirts with the AYB logo on the front and “Adopt Your Block” on the back will be available for $15, as well as $3 AYB drink koozies in two different sizes. Adopt Your Block.net will sponsor and maintain selected community trash cans with the proceeds from these sales.
Adoptyourblock.net is still a construction zone so please see the Facebook page for the latest information about our Grand Opening and stay tuned for information on future events like our Summer BBQ Party.
Gary Johnson, Ron Paul, and Tom Woods all have upcoming speaking engagements this spring. Is one of them coming to your area? This could be a great chance to do some Free State Project activism -- hand out brochures, bookmarks, and other materials, and spread the ideas of liberty. If you’d like to do outreach with print materials or by tabling for the Free State Project at an event, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
News aggregator Liberty Report is the liberty movement’s answer to Drudge Report and the best way to see the latest headlines all in one place and conveniently categorized for easy browsing.
Rothbard, Stirner, & Dobbs is a recently-formed lobbying organization created to help promote the interests of the liberty-minded people of New Hampshire to the legislature in Concord. RS&D focuses on PR campaigns, educational forums and testimony, and helping individuals and small businesses get their voices heard.
As of 03/12/2013:
▪ Participants: 13,919
▪ Participants in NH: 1,137
As of 02/12/2013:
▪ Participants: 13,795
▪ Participants in NH: 1,131
As of 01/16/2013:
▪ Participants: 13,626
▪ Participants in NH: 1,125
As of 12/16/2012:
▪ Participants: 13,471
▪ Participants in NH: 1,118
The Free State Project is an effort to recruit 20,000 liberty-loving people to move to New Hampshire. We are looking for neighborly, productive, tolerant folks from all walks of life, of all ages, creeds, and colors who agree to the political philosophy expressed in our Statement of Intent, that government exists at most to protect people's rights, and should neither provide for people nor punish them for activities that interfere with no one else.
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The work of creating and sustaining such a society in New Hampshire is the job of residents, including project participants, not the Free State Project itself.
The FSP does not endorse any specific changes to government or strategies to achieve them. The FSP does not take positions on issues, candidates, legislation, places to move within New Hampshire, tactics or methods of action. The one stipulation the FSP does make is that people who promote violence, racial hatred, or bigotry are not welcome.
Reporting by the FSP on participant activity or NH events on the website, in the newsletter, or in any other place does not represent support or endorsement and may not portray the diversity of opinions and activities that exists among participants.