The Manchester Free Press

Friday • July 19 • 2019

Vol.XI • No.XXIX

Manchester, N.H.

Monetary Metals Don’t Need a "Gold Standard" Proxy System

Libertarian Leanings - Thu, 2019-07-18 21:00 +0000

The following article was provided by Stefan Gleason, President of Money Metals Exchange.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

President Trump moved recently to nominate an avowed sound money advocate, Judy Shelton, to the Federal Reserve Board. That triggered a flurry of superficial and derisive references in the controlled media to Shelton’s past support of a gold standard.

For example, CBS News described her as “a believer in the return to the gold standard, a money policy abandoned by the U.S. in 1971.” According to the story, “mainstream economists believe it's a fringe view.”

As the “mainstream” media portrays sound money advocates, we apparently are nostalgic for the monetary system that existed all the way up until 1971.

Being backward looking by nature, our driving purpose in life is apparently to salvage that “abandoned” system.

Never mind the fact that the post-World War II Bretton Woods gold window that existed until 1971 was meant to ensure U.S. dollar hegemony in international trade – not sound money for the people.

Never mind the fact that the Federal Reserve’s creation back in 1913 spelled the death of sound money. We apparently endorse any purported “gold standard” that calls itself that.

We persist despite the fact that our views have been relegated to the “fringe” by all the approved experts. Establishment economists may not have seen the financial crisis of 2008 coming, but they sure know what’s best for the economy going forward! And what could be better than a debt-based fiat monetary system that facilitates unlimited government spending and borrowing?

New Fed Nomination Has Rekindled Debate on Gold

In all seriousness, we are grateful for the opportunity provided by Judy Shelton’s expected nomination to the Fed to clarify what sound money is, what it would mean for a modern economy, and how it might be implemented.

Sound money has intrinsic value, is stable, is trusted, is fungible, and has widespread acceptance. It need not necessarily be gold, although thousands of years of history have shown the yellow metal ably fills that role – even today.

Often overlooked, even among some sound money advocates, is silver. It arguably has a longer history than gold of being circulated as money.

The Founders wrote a bi-metallic gold-silver standard into the United States Constitution. Article 1, Section 10 makes it explicit: “No State shall… make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts…”

The Coinage Act of 1792 defined a dollar in terms of silver. Specifically, a dollar was to be 371.25 grains (equivalent to about three-fourths of an ounce) of silver, in harmony with the Spanish milled dollar.

Even before the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913, certain banking and political interests had worked to de-monetize silver.

In 1873, Congress moved to sideline the silver dollar. That sparked the so-called Free Silver Movement, which stood for allowing the supply of silver coins to be increased in accord with demand.

In 1893, populist orator William Jennings Bryan gave his famous “Cross of Gold” speech before the Democratic National Convention: “We shall restore bimetallism… If they dare to come out in the open field and defend the gold standard as a good thing, we shall fight them to the uttermost…by saying to them, you shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns. You shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold.”

At the time, Bryan saw gold as the money of the elites; silver as the money of the masses. At the least, both were needed.

Fiat Federal Reserve Notes Cause Global Turmoil

The money of today’s financial and political elites is the unbacked Federal Reserve Note. The arbitrary power of central bankers to create currency out of nothing has resulted in bubble after bubble in real estate, stocks, bonds, student loans, and government spending commitments.

Sound money proponents believe that artificially inflating certain sectors of the economy fosters waste and inefficiency – not to mention unfairness.

We believe that markets become corrupted when they are driven by particular words or syllables contained in policy statements issued by a central bank.

Moving to a rules-based, gold-pegged, or commodity-pegged system (as Trump economic advisor Stephen Moore has proposed) would reduce much of the drama and impact of Fed policy decisions by effectively making them automatic.

But the purpose of sound money isn’t merely to tie the hands of central bankers. It is to replace Federal Reserve notes and other fiat currencies with currency that is as good as gold (or silver).

Our friend Larry Parks of the Foundation for the Advancement of Monetary Education argues that even going back to the classical gold standard would still leave bankers and politicians with too much power.

Under a gold standard, government would still enforce Federal Reserve Note acceptance through legal tender laws, would be engaging in price fixing by setting the exchange rate to gold, and would almost certainly cheat the system over time through revaluations and manipulations.

Gold & Silver Themselves Can Supplant All Proxies

Ideally, sound money would spring from market forces, with gold and silver warehouse receipts (and digital equivalents) from the most reputable private vaults and banks gaining acceptance as currency.

Working backward from a monopolistic fiat system toward sound money presents a number of philosophical and technical challenges.

Some hard money purists might disagree, but in our view the advent of digital currency platforms is one of the likeliest ways for gold and silver to attain more widespread circulation as free-market money.

Debit cards and smartphone apps linked to accounts backed by – and denominated in – precious metals are in development, as are gold and silver-backed cryptocurrencies.

Granted, a digital currency linked to silver requires trust in counterparties and isn’t the same thing as actual silver dimes, quarters, rounds, or bars.

But in an era of e-commerce putting shopping malls and big box retailers out of business, most consumers won’t use money that can’t be spent digitally.

The upshot is that people who feel comfortable using a digital silver in transactions might also grow comfortable exchanging their digits back into silver coins.

A modern sound money system won’t be established overnight. Steps toward it can be made through both free-market forces and political activism aimed at freeing precious metals from taxes, legal tender laws, and other impediments to free competition with the fiat dollar.

Stefan Gleason is President of Money Metals Exchange, the national precious metals company named 2015 "Dealer of the Year" in the United States by an independent global ratings group. A graduate of the University of Florida, Gleason is a seasoned business leader, investor, political strategist, and grassroots activist. Gleason has frequently appeared on national television networks such as CNN, FoxNews, and CNBC, and his writings have appeared in hundreds of publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Detroit News, Washington Times, and National Review.

Categories: Blogs, United States

Government May Not Muzzle Its Critics

Adventures in the Free State - Tue, 2019-05-14 20:50 +0000
Let alone with its employers' money. Seems self-evident, doesn't it? One might even be forgiven for presuming that the 1st Amendment and Right-to-Know prohibited it. Even if finalized by "mutual agreement" -- because the taxpayers don't have a seat at the settlement table.

Government can't hide its (effectively admitted) transgressions. Your servants shouldn't ever be able to unjustly attempt to destroy your life, and then, as a condition of ceasing and desisting its reckless lawlessness, compel your silence on the matter. It must not have the option of escaping public accountability for its actions. Ever.

Ever.

You are the employer. You are the taxpayer. However many "bags of money" there are, you're on the hook for the damage that ostensibly warranted their distribution. You were obliged to fill them. You have a duty to understand fully what your servants are perpetrating in your name and on your dime. You are the only sure remedy to more bags getting distributed in the future. You have every right to know the particulars empirically conceded with the settlement by your servants. Government doesn't get to buy silence regarding its abuses with (your) money. A guaranteed silence that only encourages more abuse -- of you as taxpayer, and of you as potential target. "More difficult settlements" is a good thing if it encourages government not to put itself in that position in the first place.

And I'm fairly confident actionable slander and libel statutes will survive, so...

HB154, "prohibiting non-disparagement clauses in settlement agreements involving a governmental unit", before the Senate Judiciary Committee, 5/14/2019, is such a stipulation. And evidently the NHDoJ agrees. Sunlight is the best disinfectant...



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

A Right to Your Own Body -- And a Right to Defend that Right

Adventures in the Free State - Tue, 2019-05-14 19:50 +0000
Neither guns nor weed are within any delegated 'prohibition' purview of any government legitimately authorized by this US Constitution. It's that simple.

With hoplophobic hysteria (among other problems already, to be sure) having gleefully descended on the freshly Democratically-controlled NH legislature this term, the several state RKBA groups have been working overtime endeavoring to get their constituents out to relevant committee hearings and contacting their ostensible "representatives". Thus, I've expected that the public hearings for these bills would be well-enough attended and sufficiently reported that my own camera wasn't needed -- indeed, unnecessarily taking an SRO spot from someone else, who just might provide compelling testimony, too.

Plus there are the obscene parking problems in the State House's vicinity lately, even without high turnout, what with construction and the booted meters and garage spaces reserved for the Privileged Class as far as the eye can see. It shouldn't be too easy to instruct your servant government, after all...

But this day, 5/14/2019, is the typically far less well-attended Senate Judiciary Committee Executive Session to hash out and arrive at said committee's official mob-rule/damn-our-constricting-lawfully-delegated-authority recommendations to the full body on, among others, 4 of those gun bills (so there's still time to contact your Senator), all beginning at about the 9:20 mark:

HB109, "requiring background checks for commercial firearms sales", ("Ought To Pass" 3-2),
HB514, "imposing a waiting period between the purchase and delivery of a firearm", (OTP/As Amended 3-2),
HB564, "(New Title) relative to possession of firearms on school property", (OTP/A 3-2),
HB696, "establishing a protective order for vulnerable adults" (here are overviews on this one), (OTP/A 3-2).

So much head-smackingly self-assured cluelessness that cries out for addressing here, certainly -- not that it hasn't been addressed before, ad nauseam, to no effect. But I'll confine myself to arguably the most egregious: the empirically false, addle-pated conviction, at base, that criminals obey laws. And further that if the children can be assured that if the rights of (only, since they're the only ones who will comply, duh) law-abiding citizens may be violated (without Constitutional authority, needless to say), then the children will rest easy that they are somehow now made safer. That the children would buy that speaks mostly to their government-school education, seems to me. The "gun-free" school bill stops everyone but the individual it (says it) wants to stop -- and, indeed, assures him publicly of that fact. What could possibly go wrong...?

And if you haven't stopped the criminal -- and again, unauthorized statutes stopping the law-abiding by definition won't stop him -- then "feeling safe" is, at best, entirely illusory, is nothing at all but a potentially more deadly "false sense of security", because you've purged the killing zone of any effective defense against those whom your statute won't stop. The school shooter is still coming. Seriously, have you not been following the news? All you've accomplished is to reassure him that his victims will be unable to defend themselves. The belief that an individual who would shoot up a school will still heed your prohibition on peaceful carry is flat-out delusional.

But first, they 'Exec' HB399, "relative to annulment of arrests or convictions for possession of a certain quantity of marijuana" at about :40 (OTP/A 3-2) and HB481, "relative to the legalization and regulation of cannabis and making appropriations therefor" at about 6:45, ("re-refer to committee" 5-0 -- merely returning toward Constitutional constraints should get more study...!), legislative hearings for which may be viewed here and here (House) and here (Senate).

Consider. Both of these topics, guns and weed -- each of them (one explicitly, even) undelegated "prohibitions", functionally -- concern what, in a free society (hell, even in this one), should be jealously-guarded fundamentally-protected civil liberties: unilateral control of your own body, and the ability to effectively defend that right from those who, whether with or without a fancy hat, would presume to violate it.

How can the Constitution-averse Duopoly -- that assures you that it is government, and will be respected, even if ultimately it has to kill you to "earn" it (because make NO mistake, every statute is backed by a gun) -- so easily and recalcitrantly trade sides on them?

Does that seem right to you...?

From MPP New England Political Director Matt Simon, 6/14/2019, because it needs to go somewhere (and tell Sununu about the rest of your rights, too, while you've got him on the horn):
New Hampshire friends, as you may know, I have been trying to convince the state to allow patients to grow their own cannabis for more than a decade. In the fall of 2008, with support from MPP, I began meeting with patients all over the state and encouraging them to share their experiences to help educate policymakers. Since then, countless patients have testified at public hearings to explain why they need to be able to grow their own cannabis as an alternative to opioids and other potentially dangerous pharmaceuticals.The House of Representatives has listened, voting to pass *eight* medical cannabis home cultivation bills (in 2009, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019.) Sadly, the only time the Senate agreed with the House was in 2012, and the bill was vetoed by then-Governor John Lynch (D).It's good that we finally have a functional medical cannabis program and a few tightly regulated dispensaries, but many patients continue to suffer because they are unable to afford a regular supply of cannabis from the dispensaries. Since medical cannabis isn't covered by insurance, many patients simply can't afford it and are left with no choice but to continue taking opioids. Maintaining felony penalties against patients who cultivate cannabis for their own use is an insane, authoritarian policy, and it has no place in a state that has the temerity to call itself the "Live Free or Die" state.I got into this intending to help *all* patients who could benefit from cannabis, and that is why I refuse to give up this fight.This year, the Senate has once again listened to the needs of patients, and it has agreed with the House to allow limited home cultivation. HB 364 is on its way to the desk of Gov. Chris Sununu, who has not yet indicated whether he intends to sign it or veto it.This morning, HB 364 even got an endorsement from Granite Grok, which bills itself as "the conservative voice of New England" and strongly opposes legalization for adults' use. And yet, because it is opposed by the police chiefs' association, the bill's fate remains uncertain.On behalf of all the patients who have been asking for more than a decade, including many who have since passed away or moved to other states in disgust (note: home grow is now legal, not only for patients, but for all adults in all three neighboring states), I ask that you please take a moment to call Gov. Sununu's office (603-271-2121) and politely urge him to sign this critically important bill.
Media
  • 'Gun Control' Failed Again in Denver- mass murderers don't obey the law - 5/13/2019
  • Senate committee votes to delay marijuana legalization bill to 2020 - 5/14/2019
    (It's never too soon to start honoring your oath, Senator Carson...)
  • Gun Restrictions Pass the NH Senate Along Party Lines - InDepthNH.orgInDepthNH.org - 5/23/2019
  • Senate Removes Barriers to Opportunity with Expungement Legislation - Americans for Prosperity - 5/30/2019
  • Legalizing Pot Bill Dead This Session, But Will Be Back - InDepthNH.org - 5/30/2019
  • Marijuana Legalization Bill Put On Hold in N.H. Senate | New Hampshire Public Radio - 5/31/2019
  • Governor Sununu Should Sign HB364: Allowing Cannabis Cultivation for Therapeutic Use - Granite Grok - 6/14/2019
  • Our Turn: Constitutional protections go up in smoke -- 7/8/2019 (perhaps titled misleadingly, particularly in this context, concerning HB696)



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Kissinger on Kissinger — Foreign Policy as a Grand Strategy

Libertarian Leanings - Sun, 2019-05-12 12:26 +0000

Kissinger on Kissinger
By Winston Lord
140 Pages, St. Martin's Press

Kissinger on Kissinger is about the momentous foreign policy achievements of President Richard Nixon and his National Security Advisor and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger during the years 1969 to 1974. It's a conversation among old friends

In 2014 and 2015 Winston Lord and K.T. MacFarland conducted a series of foreign policy panels for C-SPAN. A video interview with Dr. Kissinger was planned to cap off the foreign policy panels. But one hour-long video interview was not enough to do justice to the extraordinary accomplishments of Nixon and Kissinger, and one interview turned into six interviews. Kissinger on Kissinger represents a transcript of those six interviews.

When Nixon took office in January of 1969, the nation seemed to be on the verge of coming apart. 1968 saw the assassinations of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, which were followed by rioting in Chicago, Washington, DC, and Baltimore. At the same time America was obsessed with and exhausted by the Vietnam War, a war that, according to CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite, was unwinnable. Yet through the support and leadership of President Richard Nixon and the negotiating skills of Henry Kissinger, South Vietnam, with the aid of American air and naval support, had achieved a military standoff and a peace settlement with the North.

In the midst of all this Nixon and Kissinger began efforts to establish relations with The Peoples' Republic of China. It was their most important and far reaching foreign policy achievement. China and the U.S. had been at war on the Korean Peninsula for two decades and considered each other arch enemies. Conventional wisdom had it that relations with Russia would suffer if Nixon moved to establish relations with China. Many even thought it would lead to war. The opposite occurred, and relations with Russia actually improved. Shortly after his summit with Mao Zedon, Nixon met with the Soviets in Moscow.

"The opening to China broke this logjam, spawning rapid progress toward a summit, arms control, and a Berlin agreement. The president's visit to Moscow in May 1972 produced major agreements.”

The Cold War was by no means over, but relations with the Soviet Union were at a level of stability not seen in decades. But the diplomat gains with the Soviets came only after Nixon and Kissinger had met with the Chinese, and only with Nixon's refusal to tolerate a North Vietnamese victory over the South.

The final foreign policy challenge to be faced by Nixon and Kissinger came with the outbreak of the Yom Kippur War in the Middle East. It began in October 6, 1973. A coalition of Arab states lead by Egypt and Syria attacked Israel. Israel pushed back until a UN cease fire was put in place on October 26, 1973. It was during this crisis the Kissinger became associated with the term “shuttle diplomacy.”

While Kissinger as an academic had immersed himself in the historic details of diplomacy, Nixon preferred to stay out of the details until negotiations were complete. Nixon and Kissinger would work out the broad outline of where negotiations should lead. Kissinger would then have authority to hammer out the details of how to get there in the negotiations, and Nixon would approve the final results.

Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger formed a near perfect partnership. Both believed in bold moves. There would be no half measures, since you pay the same price either way. Both viewed foreign policy as a Grand Strategy. Establishing relations with China, a move so bold as to be previously unthinkable, was not simply about China and America. It affected how the rest of the world dealt with China as well.

“[W]e always began every diplomatic effort with a question: 'What are we trying to do here? What is the purpose of this exercise?'”

As a result of their unique relationship, Nixon and Kissinger put together a string of astonishing foreign policy achievements. Statesmanship takes character and courage which both Kissinger and Nixon possessed. They had the vision to establish long range goals, and they had the courage to make the harrowing decisions to achieve them.

In August of 1974 Richard Nixon left office. Not long after Nixon's resignation the Democratic Congress voted to cut off all aid to South Vietnam, even overriding President Ford's veto. In 1975 without U.S. aid, South Vietnam fell to the North. One can only speculate what Nixon and Kissinger might have accomplished, and what might not have come undone, had President Nixon paid more serious attention to a third rate burglary at the Watergate Hotel.

But Kissinger on Kissinger deals only with the foreign policy initiatives that went before. It is a short book in the format of an interview that makes it readable and memorable, one that brings us behind the scenes at some of our history's most consequential events.

Categories: Blogs, United States

If Wishes Were Horses, We'd All Be Eatin' Steak!

Adventures in the Free State - Thu, 2019-05-09 18:36 +0000
And at unsustainably low mandated prices, too! And free ponies for everyone! Whee...! Ahh, fiat utopia. Sadly, however, TANSTAAFL intervenes. Everybody likes money -- you like money, too...?! Nobody appears to have any suggestions on where the funding for the bureaucrat-added costs of doing business is supposed to come from, though. Details, details... They do seem to understand well enough that their personal balance sheets need to add up. They're just not willing to concede the same realities for others. All your contract are belong to us; Love, the Central Planners...

Herewith, HB186, "establishing a state minimum wage and providing for adjustments to the minimum wage", before the NH Senate Commerce Committee, 5/9/2019. The sponsor easily acknowledges that the competitive market for goods and services in NH has already addressed this bill's intent: very few workers would benefit from its economic interventions. Because competition for good labor (it's why that Chatham ice cream shop calculates -- along with all of the other of their business considerations of which you know nothing, Senator Cavanaugh -- it's in its financial interest to pay such good wages).

So why is this necessary? Like the French politician Alexandre Auguste Ledru-Rollin, it seems, our rulers observe, "There go my people. I must find out where they are going so I can lead them."

But if it is necessary -- and there are no nettlesomely negative economic consequences to meddling in the market's pricing signals, because money evidently does grow on trees -- to overrule markets (which have more data than you do) and commandeer other people's contracts because "We Know Better", then why stop at $12? Why not, say, $50? Or $100? Surely that would be even better!

No, because even supporters, one can only surmise, can somehow grasp there would be problems -- of their own creation, and therefore their responsibility -- even if they can't articulate them. And the arguments against $50 are identical to the arguments against $12. Or any, for that matter.

Most simply, they're not your contracts, and you have a "knowledge problem". Show some humility. "Wishing" a business can afford to pay what you want it to pay -- and that the job being done economically supports paying that wage -- doesn't make it so. If you believe it can be paid sustainably, then start a competing business and you will instantly have your pick of the best labor. And like Bernie Sanders, you'll profit like a true capitalist.

Here's an alternative to force-monopoly coercion based in economic ignorance: Private voluntary contracts, and free-market pressure via natural pricing signals and non-government-undermined competition. Yes, even for labor. All will be well...

Media
  • The Right Minimum Wage: $0.00 - The New York Times - 1/14/1987
  • Glenn Harlan Reynolds: Progressives can't get past the Knowledge Problem | Washington Examiner - 4/4/2010
  • I don't know, so I'm an atheist libertarian - CNN.com - 8/17/2011
  • The Minimum Wage: A Little Light Empiricism on a Heavy Subject – Reason.com - 2/21/2013
  • The Truth About the Minimum Wage - Foundation for Economic Education - 11/19/2012
  • How the Minimum Wage Destroyed 1.4 Million Jobs | RealClearMarkets - 12/10/2014
  • The Eugenics Plot of the Minimum Wage - Foundation for Economic Education - 2/10/2015
  • Jerry Brown: “Economically, the Minimum Wage May Not Make Sense” - Foundation for Economic Education - 4/6/2016
  • San Diego’s Experiment With Higher Minimum Wage: 4,000 Fewer Restaurant Jobs – Reason.com - 4/11/2017
  • A ‘very credible’ new study on Seattle’s $15 minimum wage has bad news for liberals - The Washington Post - 6/26/2017 (or if you're not subscribed)
  • How the Knowledge Problem Impacts Your Daily Decisions - 9/7/2017
  • Venezuela’s Maduro Orders 3,500 Percent Increase in Minimum Wage … 40 Percent of Businesses Close – JONATHAN TURLEY - 9/18/2018
  • Pew Map Shows One Reason a National $15 Minimum Wage Won’t Work – Reason.com - 10/12/2018
  • The Nash Equilibrium Minimum Wage Is Zero - Foundation for Economic Education - 1/3/2019
  • Be Careful What You Wish for on the Minimum Wage – Reason.com - 1/24/2019
  • Democratic Bill Aims to Hurt NH Workers | The Liberty Block - 5/7/2019
  • Senate takes up House bill to raise minimum wage | State | unionleader.com - 5/9/2019
Some more context first...



Or...



Or...



Now the hearing...



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Go East, Young Man

Adventures in the Free State - Wed, 2019-05-08 18:58 +0000
HB567, "relative to using the Atlantic Time Zone in NH", confronts the NH Senate's Executive Departments and Administration Committee, 5/8/2019. Hey, it's where we're laboriously headed already anyway, right? Besides, adjust your activities to the solar cycle, instead of thinking you're performing miracles by moving clock hands around. Ya don't actually create another hour of daylight, y'know...

The Massachusetts 'Time Zone Commission Report' to which prime sponsor Rep. Yokela referred can be found here (or as pdf). But let's start here. Nobody likes it. So why are we still doing it...?



And now the hearing...



Press
  • Study Supports Massachusetts Time Zone Change - 9/28/2017
  • Commission: Massachusetts Should Change Time Zones, But Not On Its Own – CBS Boston - 1/1/2017
  • Could New England actually change time zones? | Boston.com | Boston.com - 11/5/2017
  • Should Connecticut stop changing its clocks for daylight saving time? This lawmaker says yes. - Hartford Courant - 1/15/2019
  • Should Massachusetts switch to keeping daylight saving time the whole year? - The Boston Globe - 3/7/2019
  • Daylight Saving Is Here. Suppose We Made This Time Change Our Last? - The New York Times - 3/9/2019
  • How permanent daylight-saving time would make all our lives better - MarketWatch - 3/9/2019
  • An extra hour of light and Boston exhales, even amid debate - The Boston Globe - 3/11/2019
  • Maine lawmakers consider move to Atlantic Time Zone, again - 3/12/2019
  • EU Parliament votes to end daylight savings | News | DW - 3/26/2019
  • Should N.J. ditch changing clocks for Daylight Saving Time? It could happen. - nj.com - 4/20/2019
  • (WA) Legislature OKs step toward year-round daylight saving - 4/23/2019

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

A Volunteer Recording a Government Committee

Adventures in the Free State - Wed, 2019-04-24 16:11 +0000
As said committee discusses (oh, so close...!) creating a committee to study requiring committees to record themselves, for the benefit of voters who generally need to be about earning their daily bread and acquiring the income necessary to satisfy said legislature's profligate spending habits (with, obviously, other people's money -- have I mentioned lately that taxation is theft?). As if those committees should actually be transparent and accountable, or something. Oversight. The Chair, herself, marvels at what could possibly be the motivation. But then, that's the imperious Senator Carson, so hardly surprising. And what the hell, if the volunteer can be obliged, catch-as-catch-can (so their machinations are still largely in the dark for the vast majority of voters), to continue to do their job for them, well...

HB457, "establishing a committee to study the making, preservation, and Internet availability of audio and video recordings of proceedings of committees of the house of representatives" -- which was changed in the House from the original bill that required them to just start providing you, dear taxpayer, with a video record of all their shenanigans (let's not be too hasty, after all) -- before the Senate Executive Departments and Administration Committee, 4/24/2019.

This hearing having been delayed about 10 minutes by the overlong previous hearing, the prime sponsor (and all 10 of the co-sponsors, to be sure) evidently had more pressing matters to which to attend. Thus your humble chronicler reluctantly finds himself in the uncomfortable position of offering the sole testimony standing between a summary "ITL" committee Executive Session recommendation and merely a discussion regarding government transparency and convenient citizen oversight -- thus, as I write this only a couple hours later, I have every confidence that pro forma Exec Session has already transpired...

Not including the 5-minute recess, under 3 minutes, total. Done and done...

[Update: As of 4/25, the bill's docket reports that the Committee Exec Session voted 5-0 'Ought to Pass', with a place on the Senate 'Consent Calendar' for next Thursday. Still only a miserable study committee, but... huh...]



Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Prohibition Is Illegal

Adventures in the Free State - Wed, 2019-04-24 01:50 +0000
It's true. Even if it were effective at its professed goals (and also not obscenely expensive in blood, treasure and liberty), and in addition to being immoral, prohibition -- of anything, since the people ratified the 21st Amendment -- is nowhere authorized to this government. Why does that fundamental fact continue to elude self-described "conservatives" in this ostensible Constitutional Republic of expressly limited government?

But the relentless prohibitionists and Constitution-deniers sure did show up in force this day, 4/23/2019, in opposition to HB481, "relative to the legalization and regulation of cannabis and making appropriations therefor," before the NH Senate Judiciary Committee. They recruited much out-of-state talent in their quest to continue violating your rights over your own body. Non-masochists might just want to skip to MPP's New England Political Director Matt Simon at about 1:53:00. We did have confirmed for us that NJ still really sucks. Gosh, you make it all sound so enticing, Bishop, but you should go home and work to alleviate your domestic afflictions, rather than attempting to convert NH.

The "good" news is that they just couldn't fit all the authoritarians into one session, so the hearing's been recessed until May 7th at 9am. So there's still an opportunity for you to explain it to them...

Press/Media
  • Opponents to N.H. marijuana legalization show up in force at hearing
  • Pot prohibition supporters dominate Senate hearing on recreational cannabis for adults | State | unionleader.com
  • NH Senate considers bill to legalize marijuana
  • Reefer Madness (1936) - YouTube
  • Channeling Anslinger: Cracks in a Crackpot Book About Pot | Project CBD
  • 21st Century Reefer Madness | Psychiatric Times
  • Sources Cited By Legalization Opponents Lack Credibility



Update: I couldn't (bring myself to) make it to Round 2. Probably just as well for my mental health. If you didn't either, here's what you missed...
  • Former U.S. drug czar urges lawmakers to reject legal marijuana | State | unionleader.com
  • Former drug czar speaks out against marijuana legalization in NH
Seriously, Senate District 2, it's time for the aggressive nanny-state-authoritarian, religious-fervor-prohibitionist and (therefore) "Constitution denier" Bob Giuda -- who, if the polls are remotely accurate, is intent on listening to anyone but his own constituents (other than cops, I mean) on this issue -- to go...

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

West Virginia Joins Growing Sound Money Movement

Libertarian Leanings - Sat, 2019-04-06 18:43 +0000

The following article was provided by Jp Cortez, assistant director at Sound Money Defense League.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Six Other States Now Weighing Their Own Bills to End Taxes on Gold & Silver

Before the ink could even dry on West Virginia Governor Jim Justice’s signature on a repeal of sales taxation on gold, silver, platinum, and palladium bullion and coins, legislators in Wisconsin and Maine introduced similar measures in their own states.

All told, 39 states have now reduced or eliminated sales taxes on the monetary metals, and Wisconsin, Maine, Kansas, Arkansas, Minnesota, and Tennessee are all actively considering bills of their own this month.

West Virginia’s Senate Bill 502 enjoyed tremendous popularity, passing through the State Senate unanimously before passing out of the House 90-9. Starting July 1, investors, savers, and small businesses in the state are no longer required to pay sales and use tax on the exchange of dollars for the monetary metals.

Earlier this week, Representative Justin Fecteau (R - Augusta) of Maine introduced LD 1446, a measure to repeal sales taxes on precious metals, saying, “Seven years since his 2012 run for President, the monetary policy lessons of Congressman Ron Paul still stick out to me. This bill is an important first step to restore sound money in Maine by refusing to tax the conversion from one legal tender to another.”

And Wisconsin State Representative Shea Sortwell (R - Two Rivers) today introduced his measure to end the taxation of money on the anniversary of President Franklin Roosevelt's controversial gold ban 86 years ago.

"On April 5th, 1933, President Franklin Roosevelt made the disastrous decision to confiscate individuals' private gold holdings through Executive Order 6102. American citizens were forced to turn in their gold under the threat of ten years in prison. Shortly after, the price was arbitrarily raised over 50%, a shocking theft of wealth from the American people," said Sortwell.

"Wisconsinites ought to have the choice and freedom to use alternative currencies and money without being taxed for it -- and this bill would put our precious metal sellers on an even playing field with our Midwest neighbors."

Meanwhile, West Virginia Congressman Alex Mooney (R-WV) is doing his own part to end federal income taxation of sound money.

Mooney’s Monetary Metals Tax Neutrality Act (H.R. 1089) would “clarify that the sale or exchange of precious metals bullion and coins are not to be included in capital gains, losses, or any other type of federal income calculation.” 

To be sure, the out-of-control spending and debt embraced by many politicians is directly undermining the value of the dollar and our savings, but momentum is building, particularly in the states, to restore sound money in America

Categories: Blogs, United States

Temporary Time-Off

Meg McLain - Thu, 2013-12-19 02:05 +0000

I have had to take some time off from my activism (and to a lesser extent, my graphic design work) to care for my elderly grandfather.  I hope to return to full time activism and design freelancing eventually; however, my family is my primary focus at this point in time.  While I appreciate those who have contacted me with various projects, I am just not in the position to put my full focus on my work at this time, which isn’t fair to those looking for quality work.  My apologies to anyone who feels they have been overlooked.  I hope I can respond to everyone, but please do not take it personally

Hope I can return soon!

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

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