The Manchester Free Press

Thursday • March 21 • 2019

Vol.XI • No.XII

Manchester, N.H.

Cannabis Prohibition: A Debate on Costs and Benefits

Adventures in the Free State - Wed, 2019-03-20 02:14 +0000

Should New Hampshire legalize, regulate, and tax cannabis? What are the potential costs and benefits?

Americans for Prosperity invites you to join former House Speaker Bill O’Brien and a diverse group of panelists for a civil discussion and debate.

Moderator: Bill O'Brien, former Speaker of the N.H. House

Legalization Supporters:
Ross Connolly, Americans for Prosperity
Former Rep. Joe Hannon, member of the study commission on marijuana legalization
Matt Simon, Marijuana Policy Project

Legalization Opponents:
Neil Hubacker, Cornerstone
Rep. Stephen Pearson (R-Derry)
Rep. Pat Abrami (R-Stratham), chairman of the study commission on marijuana legalization

Date And Time
Mon, March 18, 2019
6:30 PM – 8:00 PM EDT

Location
Nackey S Loeb School of Communications (an institution, it should be noted, with perhaps some questionable judgment)
749 East Industrial Park Drive
Manchester, NH 03109

Press
  • Kevin Landrigan's Granite Status: Sununu takes aim at Shaheen, won't rule out 2020 run | Granite Status | unionleader.com - 3/13/2019
Legalizing pot debate comes up

As the policy fight heats up at the State House, Americans for Prosperity is hosting a debate next Monday on marijuana legalization in New Hampshire.

Former NH House SpeakerBill O’Brien , who is exploring his own GOP Senate run against Shaheen, will moderate this event from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Nackey S. Loeb School of Communications in Manchester.

The panel of supporters will be ex-state representative Joe Hannon, who served on the marijuana study commission; Matt Simon, New England political director of the Marijuana Policy Project; and Ross Connolly with AFP.

The opponents will be Neil Hubacker with Cornerstone NH, Rep. Stephen Pearson, R-Derry and Rep. Pat Abami, R-Stratham, and chairman of the study commission.



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Chris Cantwell Storms Out of Studio During “Shemale vs NAZI” Event!

Free Keene - Sat, 2019-03-16 21:53 +0000

After saying he intended to stay all night if he had to, Christopher Cantwell aka the “Crying NAZI” didn’t even make it all the way through the first hour of his on-air discussion with Aria DiMezzo, the “Anarchist Shemale“. Once a caller called him a name he didn’t like, Cantwell was triggered and stormed out of the studio, bringing the “Shemale vs NAZI” event to an abrupt close. Here’s the clip:

It’s safe to say that if you leave the court, you’ve lost the match. Shemale 1, NAZI 0.

Also, kudos to Aria for not only defeating the libertarian-turned-racist-and-statist Cantwell but also for risking her Twitch channel being banned over having Cantwell on and allowing him to express his views uncensored. We were all certain they would pull down the feed, but they didn’t. Not only that, her feed made it to #2 in the talk shows category during the live broadcast and afterwards she was awarded the coveted “Twitch Partner” status for her channel!

Don’t miss Aria’s talk radio show, Call to Freedom, heard and seen weekdays 4-7pm on the LRN.FM Twitch channel and the LRN.FM audio streams. Also, if you have a computer at home or at work and are willing to help the LRN.FM channel get to Twitch Partner status, just click here for step-by-step instructions. Thank you!

UPDATE: Here’s the full “Shemale vs NAZI” event video. We then followed it up with an episode of “Freer Talk Live” where we wrapped it up as a post-show.

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

How much will it cost to implement a tax?

Adventures in the Free State - Sat, 2019-03-16 14:57 +0000
That's today's question, essentially: is the restoration of some of your liberty economically advantageous to the State? Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive -- or to over-regulate. Synonymous, really. Thirty-three pages of over-regulation, in fact. To "give" you back something that resembles your intended natural autonomy. For a fee, naturally. Duh. Ya don't get nothin' from the mafia without conditions, yo. It always expects its "taste", after all.

But micromanaging the lives and bodies and contracts of peaceful people is not the legitimate function of a servant government in a free society. Not even in this one, in point of fact, as it was designed. Finally stopping it from doing what it's not authorized to do in the first place shouldn't "cost" anything. Should it...?

It's curious that in the initial "legalization" debate, we're always assured that use rates will skyrocket -- and obviously that's "A Really Bad Thing!", arguing against legalization. But then when we eventually get to the "implementation" debate, we're told by the green-visored number-crunchers, as Rep Edwards points out, that there won't be increased use rates (and thus tax revenue) -- and obviously that's "A Really Bad Thing!", arguing against legalization! No matter where you go, there you are, I suppose...

So HB481, "relative to the legalization and regulation of cannabis and making appropriations therefor", before the NH House "How Ever Will We Pay For Leaving People Alone?!?" Ways and Means Committee, 3/14/2019. Round 1, before the House Criminal Justice Committee, can be found here (along with links to a good deal of the miserable legislative history of endeavoring to finally end horrifically expensive -- and unauthorized, and egregiously failed -- cannabis prohibition in NH.

But I can't not lead off with an outtake from John Bryfonski, Bedford chief and the current representative from the NH Chiefs of Police Association (which is disturbingly reminiscent of a similar moment of revisionist nostalgia from Peter "21A Ruined This Country" Morency, testifying for the same organization in 2008 at 2 and a half minutes of part one, and recounted in more contextual detail here -- and it would appear the current Berlin chief's favored drug war hasn't been particularly successful, even personally, for old Pete).

Enjoy. Or be very sad. You have a choice, y'know...



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Detained at US Customs for Three Hours, Devices Unconstitutionally Searched

Free Keene - Mon, 2019-03-11 03:42 +0000

Patch from CBP uniforms.

After having a wonderful time at Anarchapulco 2019, I was looking forward to coming back to New Hampshire. After being gone a total of twelve days, it felt like too long. Mexico was fun, but I missed “the Shire“. I’d scheduled a red eye flight back to the US via JFK airport and would arrive at JFK not long after 5am. This is generally a good time to speed through customs as the airport is pretty empty of passengers so the lines are very short.

Indeed, there was no line whatsoever in the main intake room with the Orwellian police state kiosks that demand ID and take your photograph, printing out a slip that you’re then expected to take to a Customs and Border Protection agent at a booth. There was only one person in the line at the booth in front of me. Despite having smooth sailing the previous year, this year was very different. After checking my ID, the initial CBP agent told me to report to a room off to the left, aka “secondary”.

After years of reporting on my talk radio program about the unconstitutional device searches going on at CBP checkpoints, I finally became part of the statistics. I was to have my devices searched in secret – or have them confiscated. According to the AP, CBP conducted searches of 29,000 devices in 2017, up from 18,400 in 2016, a 57% increase from the previous year! The Electronic Frontier Foundation is suing over it but the border device search policy has been infringing on travelers’ privacy for over a decade.

CBP’s argument is basically that you don’t have rights at the border and they can search whatever they want. Though their policy was recently updated to clarify they supposedly can’t search your online accounts via your phone, how would you really know? Even though they’re supposed to put your phone in airplane mode when they search it, they are allowed to search it in secret, where you can’t observe. That means they can image your phone, plant something on it, and access your accounts, or they could follow their rules and not do those things. You have no idea.

In my case, I went into “secondary”, located off to the side of the main intake area. It was a dismal room with institutional lighting and a bunch of CBP officers sitting behind a counter that stretched the length of the room. Given the time of day, there weren’t many victims of the CBP’s aggression sitting in the several rows of chairs, but there were a handful. All of them with brown skin, waiting around to be “served” by one of the officious, uniformed CBP bureaucrats shuffling about. As each new victim entered the room and sat down, inevitably the victim would pull out their phone in an attempt to kill the time and would be shouted at by a bureaucrat: “no phones!”. No cell phone signs that looked like they were printed 15 years ago had been posted all over the room. For a group of bureaucrats with camera systems everywhere, they sure are awful concerned about pictures being taken of their drab, boring office.

Actual photo from CBP of the area I was held – you can see one of the no cell phones signs.

Anyway, after waiting for a bit, an overweight Asian female officer called me up and had some questions about my name, like why I changed it. I told her, “I wanted to.” I understand that due to CBP refusing to respect rights at the border, you’re expected to answer questions about your identity and your travel, but beyond that scope you are not obligated to answer questions. She had me go sit back down for more waiting. Eventually an “Officer Uzzi”, also a portly New Yorker male-type, called me up to his counter. We were to go back to the table in the back hallway for a search. Uzzi acted like he’d be able to get this taken care of as quickly as possible. I knew better than to believe him. I’d gone into the office at about 5:30am and though there was no clock on the wall, it was taking a while and I suspected I’d miss my connecting flight to Boston despite it being at 8:00am.

After Uzzi pawed through my backpack and checked bag they’d had the Delta crew retrieve for them, it came time for the device search. At this point, from the reporting we’ve done on the issue on Free Talk Live, I know that you can choose to refuse to allow them to search the devices, but if you do, they will confiscate them. Whether you can ever get them back is another question. So, since most people don’t want to have to buy a new phone and laptop every time they come back into the U.S. and leaving them at home is probably not an option, CBP knows people are stuck in a place where 99.9% of their victims will hand over their devices for the unconstitutional search.

To Uzzi’s credit, he was fine with me observing his search, which included my camera, cell phone, and laptop. His search was cursory, at best. He opened up the photos app on my cell phone and looked at pictures of my dog and a bunch of landscape backgrounds. Not that I have anything incriminating, but on principle, I’d deleted most photos from my phone before arriving back in the United States. Also, when traveling I use a sanitized laptop that only has a web browser and remote desktop software on it, so there wasn’t much for him to see there either. While paging through the photos on my camera, he came across the photos of me with Ron Paul. I asked him if he knew who that was and he said he did, recalling Paul’s last name after a moment. Afterwards, it was more sitting and waiting.

During this batch of waiting, there was a lot of interaction with a rotund manager bureaucrat into whose office Uzzi would report more than a few times. It wasn’t possible to catch all of the conversation from where I was seated, but the manager, who told me later he was “Supervisor Van Ihsen”, definitely was making a bunch of phone calls to someone else. I also could have sworn I heard them say something about “child porn”. Longtime readers of this blog will recall when my home radio studio were raided and dozens of devices confiscated back in 2016. No charges have been filed against anyone who works or lives here in three years, and they still have the devices. The raid had been a part of the FBI’s running of a child porn website called Playpen, where for two weeks they allowed thousands of child porn images and videos to be downloaded hundreds of thousands of times. Recent news shows they are continuing to facilitate illegal distribution of child porn by taking over and running child porn chat rooms for at least eighteen months, despite not one single known arrest from their latest investigation.

In the three hours CBP detained and searched me, not a single other person in the room was searched, and several victims came and went during that time, all of them with brown skin. One lady was told she was being denied entry and the officer said he was going to give her a choice – she could accept the decision and go back to Ghana and apply again for a VISA or he could just deny her entry for the next five years. He acted like he was doing her a favor. Presumably, interactions like this go on all day in what CPB refers to as “Secondary”.

Electronic Frontier Foundation is Suing CBP over Unconstitutional Border Device Searches

Uzzi eventually called me up and told me I was free to go. I was able to check my phone and at that point I’d been detained there for ninety minutes. However, as I was leaving secondary, they decided they weren’t done with me after all and ordered me back in and told me to sit and wait some more.

After more waiting, I was told again to come back to their search table and was met this time by two plainclothes, badge-on-a-necklace individuals who previously had been joking around with their uniformed coworkers during the time I’d been sitting. It was now time for a second search of my devices, by people who seemed to know what they were doing. Finding a cryptocurrency sticker in my backpack, one officer, whose name was allegedly Kragoras, asked me if I was into crypto, referring to “hodling” and saying he knows about it and has had crypto in the past. They then asked me for the password to my phone. I told them I wasn’t willing to give that to them, but I’d be willing to unlock the phone for them and turn off the lock feature. They agreed and I provided the unlocked phone to them. Kragoras, thin and Middle Eastern, and his tall and skinny cohort then began to leave the search area and I protested saying I wanted to observe the search. He then claimed that they have special border search powers and left with my three devices, though he never asked me to login to the laptop, so they shouldn’t have been able to search that since it’s an encrypted linux operating system.

After more waiting, the officers brought back my devices and left them with Uzzi. To their credit, they did not falsify charges against me by planting anything on the phone. However, did they image my device and copy everything from it? There’s no way to know. The phone was returned to me in airplane mode, which suggests they were following their own rules and didn’t access my internet accounts through the phone, but I can’t know for sure, since I was prohibited from observing their search. Besides, I’d logged out of my google account and instant messaging clients before arriving back in the United States, as I know to prepare my devices in case a search like this happens. It finally did.

Uzzi again met with supervisor Van Ihsen and I was ultimately released at about 8:30am, three hours after initially detained. At this point I demanded to know the names of everyone who’d interacted with me. As is common with bureaucrats, they refused to provide first names, but Uzzi and Van Ihsen revealed their last names. However Van Ihsen initially refused to provide the names of the two plainclothes agents who’d conducted the secret search of my devices. After pressing him on it, he relented and gave me Kragoras’ name. He acted like he didn’t know who the second plainclothes guy was.

Before letting me go, they asked if I’d taken a photo of their office since being given back the devices. Sadly I had not considered sneaking a photo of their boring, dull office, but it turns out that I didn’t have to, because they posted a picture of the exact place I was on their own website here. You can see the tall counter behind which a multitude of bureaucrats sits as they decide the fates of countless peaceful people simply trying to come to what they believe is a free country, and you can even see one of the “no cell phones” signs as well. The very room they are so worried about being photographed, they themselves photographed.

And yes, I did miss my connecting flight. Delta scheduled me for the next one gratis.

With the numbers of devices being searched going up in recent years, don’t think this can’t happen to you. Consider preparing your devices for search prior to coming back into the country by removing any information or accounts you don’t want government agents to see. Or, prepare to lose your devices to confiscation if you don’t allow the search. Meanwhile the EFF’s lawsuit is the only hope to get this policy ended.

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

“Pho Keene Great” Grand Opening: Photos & Review

Free Keene - Sat, 2019-03-09 02:19 +0000

The line outside prior to PKG’s opening.

This afternoon at just before three, approximately 25 people were in line to be the first paying customers at the new Keene Vietnamese restaurant, “Pho Keene Great“. If you’re new to the Pho Keene Great story, here’s a recap of what happened with their viral showdown with the City of Keene’s Dragon. When the door was opened for the first time today, the initial customers were welcomed by the PKG crew, all wearing black uniforms including t-shirts and hats bearing the Pho Keene Great logo.

PKG’s bustling staff-on-duty numbered at least a dozen plus Chris Rietmann, the proprietor of Route 101 Local Goods, who was at the front at a table offering the hot-selling Pho Keene Great merchandise like t-shirts, hats, bumper stickers and the newest item – tote bags. Plus, each customer walking in was given a free limited-run “Live Pho or Die!” sticker in the shape of New Hampshire and featuring the PKG logo character.

If you aren’t able to come to Keene and still want your own Pho Keene Great gear, you can order it online with your credit card or cryptocurrency like bitcoin at Route 101 Local Goods.

Only a fraction of the busy crew on-duty at PKG.

After the initial group entered, more came in and by the time I left an hour later, not only was I full, but so was Pho Keene Great. Founder Isabelle Rose was seen in the kitchen, constantly active and focused on preparing the delicious food.

The guy sitting next to me at the bar, Matt, has spent most of his life running professional kitchens and he makes a habit of reviewing the restaurants he visits on Yelp. His review for Pho Keene Great was the first the restaurant had received and he left five stars and this review:

I was in line for the grand opening and was served second out of the group. I ordered their meatball pho.

Broth: simple, clear, delicate.
Noodles: perfect.
Meatballs: dense, perfect.

Route 101 Local Goods’ Chris Rietmann talks to a happy customer.

Service: excellent, professional, well seasoned.I’ve been a part of at least 20 restaurant openings in my career and looking around at this one, I see very few foibles or parts that need polish. The food was barely too long in coming, but this is literally DAY ONE, HOUR ONE. I’m extremely impressed at how well out together and error-free this has been, and I can’t wait to come back. I’m so happy not only that there’s a pho place in town, but moreso that there’s a place in town with truly fantastic food and service in a restaurant that is perfectly suitable for everything from family dinners and celebrations to business dinners.

Southeast Asian food should tick all boxes when it comes to flavor in each bite. Pho Keene Great delivers on that necessity and does it in a classy but relaxed environment, and at a reasonable price. Definitely recommend.

The restaurant will initially be open at 3pm daily except Tuesdays and offer a limited dinner menu, though with a full bar and liquor license. They even have a beer on tap from Marlborough’s Frogg Brewing.

Later they are planning to expand Pho Keene Great to include lunch and take-out, but for now they’re keeping it simple to get the gears turning. The restaurant is located next door to City Hall at 11 Central Square in Keene, NH. Here are a few more photos I snapped of the grand opening:

Pho Keene Great, minutes before opening for the first time.

Silhouettes of the intial crowd of customers – view from the bar.

Initial customers wait patiently in the cold, for delicious hot pho soup.

The green version of the sticker given to the first 100 customers!

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

Victorious “Pho Keene Great” Restaurant to Open @ 3pm Tomorrow, March 8th

Free Keene - Thu, 2019-03-07 17:23 +0000

Pho Keene Great – Opens Tomorrow March 8th at 3pm!

With less than one day before it opens its doors to the public, Pho Keene Great, the new Keene Vietnamese restaurant in the heart of downtown, has become a viral international news story after the new city manager, Elizabeth Dragon targeted the restaurant during the holidays for its “offensive and not appropriate” name.

Owner Isabelle Rose didn’t back down in the face of the city’s attempt to intimidate her and the media coverage quickly spread across the globe, with readers and viewers outraged at the oppressive, humorless “City of Keene”. Though the city manager had originally demanded Rose meet with her about the sign, the meeting never happened. Within three weeks of the original story breaking, the city people backed down and the “offensive” sign was approved and installed.

Thanks to the viral story, Pho Keene Great t-shirts, hats and bumper stickers have been selling fast at official vendor Route 101 Local Goods as people who do have a sense of humor wanted to show their support of the as-yet-unopened Vietnamese restaurant, from as far away as Australia and Afghanistan. Even celebrities like magician and comedian Penn Jillette got in on the fun.

Isabelle Rose, at her food truck in 2016.

All of this with most people never having had the food itself! I say most because many in the Keene area know exactly what to expect from Pho Keene Great when they open their doors to the public for the first time at 3pm tomorrow afternoon (Friday March 8th). Rose had in the last few years run her own Vietnamese pho food truck which had been located outside Route 101 Local Goods in Keene. The pho noodle soup was delicious and she accepted cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin as payment!

Now with a newly renovated kitchen, stocked bar, and full staff behind her, Rose is ready to graduate from her successful dream of running her own food truck to the next level – running a sit-down restaurant. I’m excited to see this all coming together for her, and a lot of it is thanks to the bumbling City of Keene making itself look like petty tyrants on the world stage (again).

Here’s some recent media coverage featuring WCAX TV’s Galen Ettlin being given an exclusive look inside Pho Keene Great during construction in February. In the package, Rose explains the story behind the restaurant and takes the reporter on a tour:

Pho Keene Great is located at 11 Central Square in downtown Keene, New Hampshire, right next door to city hall.

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

AARP Foundation Tax-Aide offers free, individualized tax preparation

AARP Foundation Tax-Aide offers free, individualized tax preparation for low-to moderate-income taxpayers - especially those 50 and older - at nearly 5,000 locations nationwide. Find a location near you by searching below. (You do not need to be an ARPP member).

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Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

Appeals court provides new vehicle to challenge registration

By Larry . . . We are excited to report that registrants in Pennsylvania now will have a new vehicle to challenge sex offender registration. The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit Court handed down a precedential decision on February 27th that has the potential to be significant going forward.

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Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

Today, the NH House voted In favor of a bill to repeal the death penalty by a vote of 279-88. "Ask the Governor not to Veto"

Today, the NH House voted In favor of a bill to repeal the death penalty by a vote of 279-88. "Ask the Governor not to Veto" HB 455 would replace the sentence of death with life in prison without parole and would only apply to future capital cases.

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Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

What If The Second Amendment Meant What It Said?

Adventures in the Free State - Tue, 2019-03-05 21:34 +0000
What if government weren't ever actually intended to be its (2A's) interpreter, its (government's) own arbiter, to decide the limits of its own authority, let alone with regard to an expressly acknowledged uninfringeable natural right?

Public hearing on SB116, "repealing the license requirement for carrying a concealed pistol or revolver." before the NH Senate Judiciary Committee, 1/29/2015. Some mighty fine testifyin'...



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

New Hampshire Home to “Special Concentration” of Dash-Accepting Merchants

Free Keene - Tue, 2019-03-05 18:26 +0000

Those in New Hampshire have been at the vanguard of cryptocurrency penetration since the creation of Bitcoin a decade ago. From developers who have constructed crypto ATMs, payment solutions, and digital marketplaces to entrepreneurs who made it easier to  buy and sell of cryptocurrency, to early-adopters who have informed their friends, family and neighbors about the empowering aspects of being ones own bank. It’s no surprise then that Amanda B. Johnson — a one-time resident of the ‘shire — makes mention of this special place in her recent video recounting Dash-accepting merchants worldwide.


From the video:

So while Dash-accepting merchants in the U.S. are geographically diverse. There is a special concentration in the state of New Hampshire.

There you’ll find Dash-accepting dentists and ophthalmologists, to auto repair shops and even car dealerships. In fact, Dash usage is so relatively concentrated in New Hampshire that CNN even went to do a special report about it.…Here in Portsmouth, New Hampshire Dash is the cryptocurrency that’s king.

Kudos to everyone on the ground in the ‘shire who has embraced cryptocurrency. We’re a decade in, I can only imagine what another decade will bring.

For me personally, it has since the beginning stood out as a peaceful tool for self-liberation. It facilitates the divestment from regimes and policies that are an affront to ones conscience and helps to connect us with our fellow human, no matter their political boundary.

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

Volunteers Needed Now

Immediate Openings Available

Please visit this page for more information:  http://www.ccjrnh.org/volunteer_positions

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

“Bitcoin Cast” Interview on Crypto Mecca of New Hampshire

Free Keene - Thu, 2019-02-28 21:49 +0000

I had the honor of being interviewed on “Bitcoin Cast” on YouTube. I was able to discuss why New Hampshire is the Crypto Mecca and why liberty-friendly cryptocurrency users ought to move here. Thanks to host Christian for having me on. Here’s the video:

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

Derrick J Interviewed at Liberty Forum 2019

Free Keene - Thu, 2019-02-28 15:59 +0000

Derrick J Freeman of VictimlessCrimeSpree.com and Anypay.global was recently interviewed on “Destination Unknown” with Vin Armani and Dave Butler live from Liberty Forum 2019. It was a great interview, so I cut it out of their recent fifteen hours of broadcasting from Liberty Forum 2019 in Manchester, NH. You can see the full 15 hour broadcast here.

Here’s their interview with Derrick J:

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

"It has to be mandatory to work."

Adventures in the Free State - Wed, 2019-02-27 16:58 +0000
Unlike when the relatively impartial Richard Lavers, Deputy Commissioner of the NH Department of Employment Security (the state bureaucracy that will be charged with implementing this payroll tax), warned essentially the same thing a year ago, regarding 2018's HB628, that title quote is from a devout supporter of the concept, in response to a Committee member's inquiry. Could it be expressed more honestly? 'My neighbors must be compelled, under force of "law", so that I can get what I want from them!' The shit ya hear at these things...  What if I decide that you have to be forced to do something for me, girlie-girl (yes, I just watched The Music Man again the other night)? You can find it at about the 54-minute mark in the hearing video below. And here I was thinking I didn't have any more to say on the matter...

Government: Ideas So Good They Have To Be Forced.

Force, however -- initiated force, coercion -- is immoral. What this bill proposes -- the further surrender to the State of individuals' private voluntary contracts, control over (and responsibility for, obviously) their respective economic lives, without their consent -- is immoral. And (necessarily) immoral force-monopoly (force is the only tool it has, after all) government isn't the solution. Stop looking to it to impose on your neighbors for you. Here's a more freedom-friendly, a more Constitutionally compliant, contracts-respecting option.

Government: GTFOOTW. Stop presuming to know better. You don't. It's true. Stop thinking that your Constitutionally-unauthorized-for-a-reason micromanagement adds anything, more than it does unintended consequences and institutionalized legal theft. And thus necessitating more such "solutions", from a government that doesn't -- that can't -- know better than individuals making choices in their own self-interest. Consider that we're here now precisely because of your past meddling in (e.g.) insurance and labor markets, above your delegated pay grade.

And some of us do not consent. Supposedly, you need that consent in this Constitutional Republic.

The insurance industry exists. Savvy entrepreneurs, who, based entirely on enlightened self-interest, desire to offer employment conditions conducive to retaining the best workers, exist. Employees, meanwhile, make choices in their own perceived self-interest (which, just by the way, they have an entirely-equal-to-the-employer right to do), regarding acceptable employment terms -- and they aren't necessarily the same choices as those of their neighbors (nor do they have to be).

Between them all, they know better than you what is best for them. The competitive market -- in this case for labor -- will decide what it wants, via voluntary private contracts. And the result, unlike from monopoly government, won't be "one size harms all". And even if you were qualified, you have no authority to overrule them. Any of them. Not in a free society. Hell, not even in this one.

Why do none of these people lobbying government for more "free" stuff because of their bad choices (and government's eagerness to provide it, at the expense of their neighors' wallet and liberty, to be sure) ever turn to the audience and say, "Learn from my mistakes! Take responsibility for your lives and the shit that can happen in them! Stop asking for handouts and subsidies because you never thought it could happen to you, and just go buy insurance!"

But wait a minute. What the hell's going on here, anyway?! Wasn't the NH Senate Finance Committee hearing on this here SB1, "relative to family and medical leave", a mere 4 weeks ago, on 1/29/2019? And isn't "crossover day" -- when each body receives bills that have survived the initial harried gauntlet in the originating chamber -- still, like, a month away?! Has the House really run out of things to do?! House Minority Leader Dick Hinch, any thoughts...?
First, they tried to slip SB16 in under the radar, so they could attach an ill-advised amendment to it dealing with authorizing unemployment benefits to federal employees affected by the recent government shutdown. Despite written communication from the federal government and repeated public comments advising against this provision from our own Department of Employment Security, House Democrats moved forward with a bad idea.
They are doing a great job finding avenues to exploit the shutdown for political gain, and they seem to be willing to disregard customary processes and common sense as they charge down this road. Yesterday, their lack of forethought on this issue resulted in the committee needing to recess the executive session and delay action on this bill due to the volume of problems uncovered in the amendment. Haste makes waste.
We’ve now learned that SB1 has been introduced in the House, and I can’t believe that with all of the other business we have to complete, that they would want or need to schedule a public hearing and begin work on this very complex legislation. Sure, it’s a Democrat legislative initiative to institute this family leave income tax program, but I can’t believe we’re diverting resources and time to this legislation during such a busy week dealing with House bills. The House has yet to act on the House version of this legislation, and they’re already scheduling a public hearing on the Senate version. I just can’t see the reasoning. Where has process and common sense gone?
Hmm. This legislative session is shaping up as potentially really expensive -- if not in blood, at least in treasure and liberty...

Herewith, then, SB1 before the NH House Labor, Industrial and Rehabilitative Services Committee, 2/26/2019 (remember, the Senate hearing -- and more commentary, natch -- is here). The rush to jump the "crossover" gun would suggest to me that the Dems are endeavoring to force Governor Sununu's hand before the voluntary option (yet still not government's delegated job) he's promised in partnership with VT even sees the light of legislative day. Why might that be...?

The sadly-limited offered opposition can be found interspersed between the responsibility-free anecdotes at about 1:05, 1:07, 1:33, 1:46 and 1:56.

Media
  • Paid family and medical leave mandate clears state Senate | Health | unionleader.com - 2/14/2019
  • House GOP Leader Says Democrats Rushed Bills, Disregarded Process - InDepthNH.org - 2/22/2019
  • New Hampshire, Vermont Governors Pitch Two-State, Voluntary Paid Family-Leave Plan - WSJ - 1/16/2019
  • Sununu Joins Vermont Governor to Pitch Plan for Voluntary Paid Family and Medical Leave | New Hampshire Public Radio - 1/16/2019
  • Sununu Unveils Paid Family Leave Plan; Democrats Balk | Concord, NH Patch - 1/16/2019
  • NH And Vermont Governors Propose Two-State Family Medical Leave Plan | NH1.com - 1/18/2019



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Penn Jillette Models Pho Keene Great Shirt, Promises to Visit!

Free Keene - Thu, 2019-02-21 18:56 +0000

Magician and Comedian Penn Jillette Wearing Pho Keene Great Shirt!

The Pho Keene Great victory over the dastardly City of Keene gang continues to reverberate throughout the world. Now, the already popular Pho Keene Great t-shirt is being modeled by magician and comedian Penn Jillette on his Twitter account, where he’s followed by over 1,840,000 people.

In another tweet, Jillette also promises he’ll be stopping in to Pho Keene Great, presumably when he next visits his nearby hometown of Greenfield, MA.

Long-time readers of Free Keene will remember when years ago Jillette expressed his desire to move here to Keene and join “with the Free Staters”. Looks like he has continued to pay attention.

Pho Keene Great t-shirts have been continuing to fly off the shelves at Route 101 Local Goods. Proprietor Chris Rietmann says orders continue to come in daily both online and in-person at 661 Marlboro St in Keene, NH. Plus, fans can now order Pho Keene Great hats and bumper stickers! Yes, you can pay with cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, DASH, and a bunch of other cryptos.

Pho Keene Great is expected to open its doors sometime in March, according to co-owner Isabelle Rose.

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

VIDEO: The Importance of Connection | Alissa R. Ackerman | TED TALK

Dr. Alissa R. Ackerman offers a new perspective on restorative justice and how it can help those who suffered from sexual assault. With her personal experience, she shares with everyone the true importance of engaging in difficult conversations to heal from intimate harm.

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Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

State House crime bill hearings the week of Feb. 19

Try to attend the crucial bill meetings marked in red type below about some crucial bills to help prisoners and their loved ones. Failing that, you can still email your written testimony to the appropriate House or Senate committees. Just go to the web page for a chosen committee and find the mass committee email address. 

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Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

Ron Paul’s No Chicken – Speaks at Anarchapulco Despite Recent Murder

Free Keene - Sat, 2019-02-16 07:15 +0000

Ron Paul and Ian Freeman wearing a Pho Keene Great hat.

Hello from the second night of the fifth annual Anarchapulco in Acapulco, Mexico! It’s my third year broadcasting my talk show from the event, which I last year said had surpassed Porcfest as the must-attend annual liberty event.

Unfortunately, this year’s event received quite a bit of bad press in the couple weeks prior. A self-proclaimed anarchist, John Galton was shot to death. Galton had been living in the area after allegedly escaping prosecution for cannabis “crimes” by the US Federal gang. Despite the murder having nothing to do with Anarchapulco as Galton was co-organizer of a different and now-canceled event called Anarchaforko, Anarchapulco was targeted by the media anyway.

No one knows the real story behind the murder. Various theories abound. Was the murder an inside job, a cartel killing, or something else? Would Anarchapulco founder Jeff Berwick be gunned down during his own event? This had the liberty community buzzing away before Anarchapulco 2019 began. Would the speakers show up? Would the attendees? I even heard that some craven busybodies had been contacting speakers and encouraging them to cancel.

Anarchapulco 2019 Logo

Turns out, the event is a major success, with excellent attendance, likely more than last year, which was a sellout. This year the organizers rented the entire resort and it seems to have been worth it. They’re already planning for 2020.

That said, it is likely some attendees chose to stay home due to fear. According to one participant, Anarchapulco tickets were allegedly being offered for sale before the event at a very low price on some facebook group. There was discussion by some over what, if any, extra security would be provided. This, despite no credible threat being made against the event.

It’s true that some speakers didn’t make it either, but that happens at any convention, especially one the size and complexity of Anarchapulco, where there are several stages operating simultaneously. It’s inevitable cancellations will occur. Shit happens.

The real test was Dr. Ron Paul, who was scheduled to speak this evening as the event keynote. If he didn’t show, I think the tone of the event would have shifted to depressed and negative from excited and positive.

Lyn Ulbricht chats with Ron Paul at Anarchapulco 2019

Not only did Ron Paul show up and give a great, uplifting speech, he came in the front like a boss, rather than slipping in the back, and spent plenty of time with his fans on his leisurely pace to the main event stage. He stopped many times for long periods to chat and pose for photos. Afterwards, there was a special dinner with Dr. Paul and he hung around to spend even more time with regular event attendees both before and after the dinner, in different parts of the hotel. We just kept seeing him over and over posing with people for photos. It was great.

There’s a reason Ron Paul is a libertarian hero and people flock to see him speak. He has always stood for his beliefs, whether in D.C., Texas, or in Acapulco. He’s never backed down.

When some suggested we at Free Talk Live not attend at all and even my co-host Mark Edge proffered we hide away broadcasting in a green room, I said no way. I don’t live in fear. I’m glad and honored to have Ron Paul at my side – literally.

Thanks for coming to Anarchapulco 2019, Ron. You rock.

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

Forbes: Keene is “Crypto Mecca”

Free Keene - Fri, 2019-02-15 04:30 +0000

Forbes Magazine Covers Keene’s Crypto Scene

I awoke today in the Princess Resort in Acapulco on day number one of Anarchapulco 2019 to some awesome news: a new Forbes article refers to Keene as “Crypto Mecca”! Thanks to their reporter, Rebecca Campbell, for her excellent story featuring Keene’s amazing, world-leading crypto scene!

Longtime readers of Free Keene already know Keene is a top world city for per-capita businesses accepting cryptocurrency.

Now that fact has made one of the world’s most popular financial publications, Forbes. You can read the full story here, titled “Market Downturn? The People Using Crypto Show Why The Market Is Not Dead”. Also featured in the article, the amazing crypto-art of Nanu Berks, which is quite exquisite.

The article is a testament to the success of the model of moving liberty-minded activists together to the same place. Over and over, Keene’s activists prove they are able to attract a disproportionate amount of media coverage here, despite our relatively small size. Also, the Seacoast’s killer crypto-activist duo of Derrick J Freeman and Steven Zeiler get honorable mention for their amazing work bringing Portsmouth businesses into crypto as well as launching the amazing Anypay merchant crypto acceptance app.

Thanks to Forbes for the coverage, but most importantly to the pioneering local businesses who are accepting cryptocurrency and made this possible.

Categories: Articles, New Hampshire

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