Free State Project Forum

Archive => Which State? => Topic started by: Joe on July 18, 2003, 10:19:50 pm

Title: Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Joe on July 18, 2003, 10:19:50 pm
So how should we research and argue the "Which state?" question?

Mickey, wrote on another thread:
Quote
Sorry, Joe. I wasn't really trying to make it out like you were intentially trying to keep the Wyoming info from us.
Unfortunately others have made that accusation.  So to them I ask: When I find information about one or a few states, should I not post it because I was not able to find it for the other states? Or should I be reluctant to post some information because it makes some states look bad and others look good?  Or should I post whatever I find and let the chips fall as they may?

I'm not an expert on any of the ten states.  Yet I have done one heckuva lot of political and geographic research on all of them and could perform as an expert proponent for any of them.  That's why I took on the task of making the ballot argument for Maine (which will be mailed with the other nine arguments) and making the case for Maine in the Great Debate here. That and the fact of my being stationed in Maine and traveling around some of it for a short time. Yet I'm not even close to being even a tenth of the expert that each one of the voting Porcupines should be on all of the states in order cast informed votes.

One of my goals here is to help people identify the strong and weak points of each of the states. From my experience as councilman I've tried to identify what criteria really would be important to the success or failure of Free State Activism and of making a Free State.  I've dug up a lot of info and posted it.  Whenever I could I've tried to find equivalent info for all ten (or thirteen last summer).  I've let the chips fall as they may. You can see that in much of my research because my rankings have various states at the top. Yet, as I've looked at ever more information, a few states keep hitting the top few slots.  One state keeps hitting so many top spots that it can not be ignored. Unfortunately my personal favorite, Maine, is not on the top, it is often near the bottom.

Emphatically I believe that the FSP and the high stakes involved are not the place for emotional "faith" and high pressure sales tactics based on marketing and political tricks.  But, because some state proponents have resorted to such tactics, it seems the only effective response is, unfortunately not facts, but similar tactics.  I say unfortunately because that is exactly what Porcupine activists are going to be dealing with in politics in the chosen state. Opponents will throw out deceiving claims and even lies, the rebuttal of which will take an enormous amount of time and energy.  No sooner will you respond to one letter to the editor than another one will appear -- demanding another rebuttal. And facts don't wash with the public. Emotional arguments do. Bullshit often does.  People too often don't have the ability or willingness to understand the facts or to do their own research and think for themselves. Too often they are intimidated by "know it alls".  The opposition knows this and finds it ever so easy to discredit a Thomas Jefferson or a scientific theory with some emotional bullshit that sells easier than an understanding of Jefferson or science.

So we have to respond with letters to the editor and titles and articles and columns and postings and sound bites that play by the same tactics as the opposition.  Bullshit sells. Facts and research don't.

I wish I and a few others could sell Maine because, as I've argued in the Great Debate, it has some assets for a Free State that the others can't match.  Yet its population numbers are a major drawback. I've made the case elsewhere on these forums that even a state with 100,000 people will be a hard fight.  A million people is such a stretch as to be most discouraging a prospect.

But we don't have such a small population state. Thus we strive to identify the least bad of the poor chances.  Emotional bullshit should not be part of that process. Unfortunately it is and we must deal with it now, and later when Porcupines face opposition in the chosen state.

One of my greatest frustrations here is the so very few numbers of Porcupines doing research.  These are supposed to be the activists which will be doing research on budgets, ordinances, statutes, etc.?  That so few are willing to do research on the biggest question of all -- which state -- is disappointing to say the least.  And when so many dismiss the research that has been done -- that is a blow to my confidence that they could be activists at all.  How can they debate a budget when they may know so little about it?  The research here is only the beginning.  Informed activists are crucial to the task of nurturing an informed electorate which can see through the bullshit thrown by the opposition.  (I assume that an informed electorate is what we seek -- rather than tabloid electioneering of sheeople which the statists are so very effective at).
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Dave Mincin on July 18, 2003, 11:33:08 pm
Joe,

I agree few of the porcupines, myself included have done much research, re which is the best state.   But I must also say that research and numbers are just one aspect of what it will take to create a Free State.

What about people Joe?  What about the porcupines?  What about those who say they will be political activitists?

I hear all this research, but I hear nothing about the people, like individuals that will carry the flag, that will go out and really do what needs to be done to win elections, and gain political power.

Come on Joe, I went to the Getaway, I talk to everyone I could, they were really great folks, dedicated, and ready to work to create a Free State!  

You give me statistics, tell me why we should go somewhere else, yet when I ask about the people in those states, I get little or nothing.

People will create the Free State Joe, not statistics!  You want to convince me that NH is not the place we should go then tell me about the people that are there to support us that welcome us that are ready to work to create a Free State.  If all you can give me is statistics then sorry my friend I don't buy it!

Dave
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Tony Stelik on July 19, 2003, 09:43:19 am
Joe
I have found NH is “DO IT YOURSELF POLITICKS” state.
Politicks is there like hobby practiced by independents (libertarians)
People of NH can’t wait for FSP reinforcements.
FSP is wormy welcomed.
Question to you:
What is the other state with this benefits for FSP?
I am looking through the forums and I see the westerners do not even know how to culturally discuss. Zero tolerance for different point of view. How this will play with the voters?
Marshrobert hit the nail on the head asking about the people.
Answer my post
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Karl on July 19, 2003, 10:26:12 am
And "handful" is all the Porcupines have.  Maybe one in thirty voters.  When Porcupines gather together and see a couple dozen like-minded potential activists they get enthused. Yet a few dozen effective activists is a mere handful in a state of a million people. Will 20,000 Porcupines result in 20,000 activists?  Be careful with the answer since history proves otherwise.

Much of your case for Wyoming has been staked around the idea that we can outvote or "convert" a significant portion of the native population.  One of your arguments even presumed a massive strategic moving effort in order to outvote the natives in 20% of legislative districts.  All this was supported by statistics.  All fine and good.  But I make these points:

1.  You have expressed many times that 20,000 people is not enough.  I agree.  I'm far more pessimistic than most.  I apply the 80/20 rule twice.  Only 20%, or 4,000 people will actually move.  Of those, only 20%, or 800 are "activists" as we would define them.  Thats right!  Only 800 porcupines running for office, writing letters, and attending rallies.  Now, if most people here were as pessimistic as I, they'd dump the whole FSP idea and move on.  But I have seen what a couple dozen activists can do in New Hampshire.  Fourty times as many would be extraordinary.  But not enough to outvote anybody in any state!  We'll have to rely heavily on native activists, mostly on an issue-by-issue basis.

2.  Your 20% legislature plan, which you illustrate to promote Wyoming, requires that we move strategically to 20% of the districts.  This is an extraordinary proposition given the already dubious prospects for employment in Wyoming.  We would be expected to further restrict employment options to areas immediately around those chosen districts.  It is simply not a valid option.

3.  Much, if not most, promotion by activists occurs through mass means -- letters to the editor, television/radio interviews, political campaigns, speeches, and through direct lobbying efforts.  The activist-to-population ratios simply don't apply here.  Some have expressed the idea that we can "convert" people to our views, like so many Mormons-on-bicyles.  Such nonsense!

CONCLUSION:

The population analsysis we've seen is flawed.  We cannot hope to make meaningful progress by outvoting anyone, even in Wyoming.  We must use a DIFFERENT STRATEGY.  We must run for offices, and promote our ideals on a campaign-by-campaign basis.  We must do this in a place that has expressed openness to our ideas, and that has a strong grass-roots political culture.

New Hampshire is that place.  Wyoming and other western states is not.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Zxcv on July 19, 2003, 10:34:08 am
Wow, Joe, proof of your thesis with just a couple of responses. No wonder you get discouraged.

Personally, I don't think we should respond with the tactics our opposition uses. Or if we do it at all, we should do it very sparingly. Sort of like Frodo with his Ring.

There is a lot of bullshit out there, but we have some new tools to combat it. The Internet is uncontrolled, unfiltered information. Of course there is a lot of bullshit there too, but people will start learning whose opinion carries weight and whose does not, as the points and counterpoints of arguments are laid out. It's not an instantaneous process, but I'm optimistic over the long term that the bullshit can be defeated, or at least contained.

BTW, I would not say "statistics is all we have". There are other valid tools for weighing the choices.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Karl on July 19, 2003, 10:54:07 am
BTW, I would not say "statistics is all we have". There are other valid tools for weighing the choices.

Yes, his statement on this matter is indeed:  bullshit.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: LeRuineur6 on July 19, 2003, 11:20:56 am
I'm sorry to tell you this, but you can't put a statistical measure on the "welcome" of a state.  New Hampshire, for example, has been infinitely more welcoming to the FSP than Wyoming.

That the advocates of Wyoming minimize the significance of this fact astounds me, especially if facts are all we have.

A late entry for WY into the welcoming game, limited WY welcoming tactics, and weak WY welcoming strategies coupled with an unprecedented, strong, hard-working, well-researched, detailed, powerful welcoming strategy in NH leads any observer to many logical conclusions, the least of which is the ability of NH FSP activists to get things done, to strike a chord with voters, and to influence people.

This cannot be denied.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Zxcv on July 19, 2003, 11:37:02 am
That's because folks in Wyoming, as far as I can tell, are not terribly excited about political pressure groups. Wyoming is not a politics-saturated state (which is I thought what we were all shooting for, in the long range - civil society over political society). They are more interested in people as individuals. My scant experience in Wyoming tells me I'd be very welcomed there.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Dalamar49 on July 19, 2003, 11:38:04 am

Personally, I don't think we should respond with the tactics our opposition uses. Or if we do it at all, we should do it very sparingly. Sort of like Frodo with his Ring.

Movie references! I love 'em.  :D
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Dave Mincin on July 19, 2003, 07:11:04 pm
As usual, I must respectfully disagree. :)

PEOPLE will determine if the Free State suceeds, not statistics, and I have met enough real live porcupines to know that we will suceed!
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: robmayn on July 20, 2003, 08:39:35 am
And "handful" is all the Porcupines have.  Maybe one in thirty voters.  When Porcupines gather together and see a couple dozen like-minded potential activists they get enthused. Yet a few dozen effective activists is a mere handful in a state of a million people. Will 20,000 Porcupines result in 20,000 activists?  Be careful with the answer since history proves otherwise.

1.  You have expressed many times that 20,000 people is not enough.  I agree.  I'm far more pessimistic than most.  I apply the 80/20 rule twice.  Only 20%, or 4,000 people will actually move.  Of those, only 20%, or 800 are "activists" as we would define them.  Thats right!  Only 800 porcupines running for office, writing letters, and attending rallies.  Now, if most people here were as pessimistic as I, they'd dump the whole FSP idea and move on.  But I have seen what a couple dozen activists can do in New Hampshire.  Fourty times as many would be extraordinary.  But not enough to outvote anybody in any state!  We'll have to rely heavily on native activists, mostly on an issue-by-issue basis.



CONCLUSION:

The population analsysis we've seen is flawed.  We cannot hope to make meaningful progress by outvoting anyone, even in Wyoming.  We must use a DIFFERENT STRATEGY.  We must run for offices, and promote our ideals on a campaign-by-campaign basis.  We must do this in a place that has expressed openness to our ideas, and that has a strong grass-roots political culture.

New Hampshire is that place.  Wyoming and other western states is not.


This pretty much sums up the conclusions that I have arrived at as well.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: jgmaynard on July 20, 2003, 09:27:11 am
That's because folks in Wyoming, as far as I can tell, are not terribly excited about political pressure groups. Wyoming is not a politics-saturated state (which is I thought what we were all shooting for, in the long range - civil society over political society).

That's what YOU said YOU want, Zxcv..... If we are going to have to convince tens of thousands of voters to vote our our issues and candidates, I think we're better off where people CARE about politics.... :D

JM
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: anarchicluv on July 20, 2003, 02:57:47 pm
That's because folks in Wyoming, as far as I can tell, are not terribly excited about political pressure groups. Wyoming is not a politics-saturated state (which is I thought what we were all shooting for, in the long range - civil society over political society). They are more interested in people as individuals. My scant experience in Wyoming tells me I'd be very welcomed there.

Zxcv,

You make an excellent point here; especially for those with an anarcho-capatalist outlook.  I would much rather we move to a state w/ less politics than more.  Wyoming is certainly the best choice when taking this into consideration.

Some will use politics as a means of changing our chosen state into the most Free State in the union; others such as myself will take a much different approach.  I think that regardless of the approach one chooses to take, the less politics involved the better.

Jeremy
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Karl on July 20, 2003, 03:10:02 pm
That's because folks in Wyoming, as far as I can tell, are not terribly excited about political pressure groups. Wyoming is not a politics-saturated state (which is I thought what we were all shooting for, in the long range - civil society over political society). They are more interested in people as individuals. My scant experience in Wyoming tells me I'd be very welcomed there.

If this is the prevailing ethic of free staters, we're in trouble.  New Hampshire has remained relatively free because of a vigilant, politically active populace.  Without a similar ethic in other states, we may find some supporters, but few allies.

Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: JonM on July 20, 2003, 03:15:44 pm
Zxcv,

You make an excellent point here; especially for those with an anarcho-capatalist outlook.  I would much rather we move to a state w/ less politics than more.  Wyoming is certainly the best choice when taking this into consideration.

Some will use politics as a means of changing our chosen state into the most Free State in the union; others such as myself will take a much different approach.  I think that regardless of the approach one chooses to take, the less politics involved the better.

Jeremy
A much different approach?  Will they be referring to your house as a compound on CNN one day?

Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Dalamar49 on July 20, 2003, 03:22:46 pm
Nevada shares the same political apathy that Wyoming does and look where that's gotten us. Now our state is getting taken over by politically active Californians who want socialism and poltically active Utah'ins who want to conservatize Nevada. Political apathy is a negative not a positive. I rather live in a state with a politically active, liberal populace than a state with a  politically apathetic populace.

Apathy is an open door that welcomes any group to come in and force change. Yes, that can be beneficial to the FSP, but it also leaves the political door open to any pro-government group around who'd like resocialize the state we've worked so hard to liberate.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: EMOR on July 20, 2003, 03:32:34 pm
And "handful" is all the Porcupines have.  Maybe one in thirty voters.  When Porcupines gather together and see a couple dozen like-minded potential activists they get enthused. Yet a few dozen effective activists is a mere handful in a state of a million people. Will 20,000 Porcupines result in 20,000 activists?  Be careful with the answer since history proves otherwise.

1.  You have expressed many times that 20,000 people is not enough.  I agree.  I'm far more pessimistic than most.  I apply the 80/20 rule twice.  Only 20%, or 4,000 people will actually move.  Of those, only 20%, or 800 are "activists" as we would define them.  Thats right!  Only 800 porcupines running for office, writing letters, and attending rallies.  Now, if most people here were as pessimistic as I, they'd dump the whole FSP idea and move on.  But I have seen what a couple dozen activists can do in New Hampshire.  Fourty times as many would be extraordinary.  But not enough to outvote anybody in any state!  We'll have to rely heavily on native activists, mostly on an issue-by-issue basis.



CONCLUSION:

The population analsysis we've seen is flawed.  We cannot hope to make meaningful progress by outvoting anyone, even in Wyoming.  We must use a DIFFERENT STRATEGY.  We must run for offices, and promote our ideals on a campaign-by-campaign basis.  We must do this in a place that has expressed openness to our ideas, and that has a strong grass-roots political culture.

New Hampshire is that place.  Wyoming and other western states is not.


This pretty much sums up the conclusions that I have arrived at as well.
You say you want a new strategy, but you state the same strategy the LP has failed at for years. If we want to continue to fail then NH is the place. If we want to succeed then Wyoming is the only choice.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: EMOR on July 20, 2003, 03:34:33 pm
Nevada shares the same political apathy that Wyoming does and look where that's gotten us. Now our state is getting taken over by politically active Californians who want socialism and poltically active Utah'ins who want to conservatize Nevada. Political apathy is a negative not a positive. I rather live in a state with a politically active, liberal populace than a state with a  politically apathetic populace.

Apathy is an open door that welcomes any group to come in and force change. Yes, that can be beneficial to the FSP, but it also leaves the political door open to any pro-government group around who'd like resocialize the state we've worked so hard to liberate.
You just made a good case for Wyoming. If it is easy for a few to take over Nevada then it will be easier for 20,000 FSPers to take over Wyoming.  :D
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: jgmaynard on July 20, 2003, 04:03:55 pm
Within a population of politically active people, our numbers will increase as we gain activists, not just promises  to vote, which may or may not ever materialize.

As was said at the Escape to NH, our 2% will be able to train 2%, who can train 2%, and so on....

Apathy means there are no tools to work with.

New Hampshire offers us a politically active base, with a strong 37% of  registered independents.  

We need people to win. We need activists. We have them in New Hampshire.

500th post! :D

JM



Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Karl on July 20, 2003, 04:21:16 pm
You say you want a new strategy, but you state the same strategy the LP has failed at for years. If we want to continue to fail then NH is the place. If we want to succeed then Wyoming is the only choice.

If you're still sold on the "20,000 is enough for libertopia" fantasy, I can't help you.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Mike Lorrey on July 20, 2003, 04:24:14 pm
That's because folks in Wyoming, as far as I can tell, are not terribly excited about political pressure groups. Wyoming is not a politics-saturated state (which is I thought what we were all shooting for, in the long range - civil society over political society). They are more interested in people as individuals. My scant experience in Wyoming tells me I'd be very welcomed there.

What we are interested in is to take over political society so that we can enable civilians to live as they wish without opression. Once we do this, we serve as an example, a beacon, that will spread our policies to neighboring states, across the country, and around the world. You can't do that hiding in a bunker in Wyoming.

While I see in Wyoming that laws are passed that mandate that my fingerprints be turned over to the FBI after I apply for a CCW, I see in NH pass laws that outlaw the collection of fingerprints or photographs by local law enforcement entirely.

My scant experience in Wyoming tells me different than yours. My lifetime of experience in NH tells me that NH is already Free State, version 0.5.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: anarchicluv on July 20, 2003, 06:24:11 pm
Zxcv,

You make an excellent point here; especially for those with an anarcho-capatalist outlook.  I would much rather we move to a state w/ less politics than more.  Wyoming is certainly the best choice when taking this into consideration.

Some will use politics as a means of changing our chosen state into the most Free State in the union; others such as myself will take a much different approach.  I think that regardless of the approach one chooses to take, the less politics involved the better.

Jeremy
A much different approach?  Will they be referring to your house as a compound on CNN one day?

I certainly hope not.

I won't bother trying to explain my beliefs here, as many others have done so already in cyberspace.  If you're interested in learning more about those of us who don't think fighting politics with politics works (fire with fire), then check out these sites:

The Voluntaryist: http://users.aol.com/vlntryst/
Strike The Root: http://www.strike-the-root.com/
Rational Review: http://www.rationalreview.com/
Lew Rockwell: http://www.lewrockwell.com/

Jeremy
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: JonM on July 20, 2003, 07:16:04 pm
I won't bother trying to explain my beliefs here, as many others have done so already in cyberspace.  If you're interested in learning more about those of us who don't think fighting politics with politics works (fire with fire), then check out these sites:

The Voluntaryist: http://users.aol.com/vlntryst/
Strike The Root: http://www.strike-the-root.com/
Rational Review: http://www.rationalreview.com/
Lew Rockwell: http://www.lewrockwell.com/

Jeremy

I was under the impression the FSP was designed to gather 20,000 pro-liberty people to work within the political process to effect change.  If this is not the case, would someone please tell me?  Jason, could you clarify?

Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: anarchicluv on July 20, 2003, 07:51:37 pm
I was under the impression the FSP was designed to gather 20,000 pro-liberty people to work within the political process to effect change.  If this is not the case, would someone please tell me?  Jason, could you clarify?

From the FAQ:

Q. Who is welcome to participate?

A. Anyone who can agree to the clause in the Statement of Intent which says that you should support the creation of a society in which the maximum role of civil government is the protection of citizens' rights to life, liberty, and property. In essence, this includes everyone who wants to cut the size and scope of government by about two-thirds or more. Put in a positive way, most FSP members support policies such as abolition of all income taxes, elimination of regulatory bureaucracies, repeal of most gun control laws, repeal of most drug prohibition laws, complete free trade, decentralization of government, and widescale privatization. People of this disposition may go by many names: "classical liberals" (not the same as modern liberals at all, but followers of Thomas Jefferson and similar thinkers), libertarians, paleoconservatives, constitutionalists, voluntarists, etc., etc.


I may not agree that politics is the way to reach these goals, but I certainly agree with the goals themselves.  There are many paths up this mountain.  If we can all work together, each of us taking the path to reform that suits us best, we will succeed.

Also from the FAQ:

Q. The Statement of Intent says that I should "exert the fullest possible effort" toward the creation of a minimal-government society, but I have moral objections to voting. Would the FSP require me to vote?

A. The short answer is "no." "Possible" is to be defined by each individual for himself; that language in the Statement is intended to be a proud statement of courage, to inspire. Obviously, everyone who joins the FSP has a deep commitment to liberty, given the personal investments that are involved in the Project. Our job is not to assess or judge that commitment.


Jeremy

Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Kelton Baker on July 20, 2003, 08:09:08 pm
CONCLUSION:

The population analsysis we've seen is flawed.  We cannot hope to make meaningful progress by outvoting anyone, even in Wyoming.  We must use a DIFFERENT STRATEGY.  We must run for offices, and promote our ideals on a campaign-by-campaign basis.  We must do this in a place that has expressed openness to our ideas, and that has a strong grass-roots political culture.


If this is truly your position,  Idaho fits beautifully.  Double the number of Libertarian Party candidates ran for office than in New Hampshire and in more prominent offices, much higher vote totals for the LP, far better totals in Idaho's best 3-way races, several 2-way races between Republicans and Libertarians. . .
 
Want a strong grass-roots political culture?  That is what Boise is shaping-out to be.  A petition drive of thousands readily garnered far more signatures than necessary to oust former Boise mayor after he decided to use taxpayer money to pay for  a dinner and a show; a march through the streets followed --try finding that kind of pro-liberty activism in any other city of its size!



Quote

Some will use politics as a means of changing our chosen state into the most Free State in the union; others such as myself will take a much different approach.  I think that regardless of the approach one chooses to take, the less politics involved the better.


Of course, I agree with Misterbeanz here on this one.  Far more has been accomplished for liberty through the forces of society than in the realm of politics.  I would like to play a part in a religious sort of awakening, particularly among those of my own faith in recognizing how spiritually defeating it is to try to force belief upon others.  The political aspect is important, but there has got to be a few 'miracles' happen behind the scenes first.

272
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: JonM on July 20, 2003, 08:34:15 pm
Misterbeanz,

Point conceded, but how successful do you think this project will be without political activity?
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Jacobus on July 20, 2003, 08:41:16 pm
Quote
I was under the impression the FSP was designed to gather 20,000 pro-liberty people to work within the political process to effect change.

Working within the system does not necessarily mean running for office and voting.  There is plenty else to do to help create a free state:

Support homeschooling.  If you can, homeschool your own children.  Participate in homeschool networks and help others see an alternative to government "education" and hopefully use it themselves.  Homeschool networks not only help with public sentiment, but would make it easier for others to homeschool.  For example, busy parents may not have the time, resources, or education themselves to handle all aspects of their children's education.  Networks could help by providing group social activities, field trips, and provide tutor/teachers that could help with a "classroom" of students.

Gun rights.  I am of the opinion that most anti-gun nuts have never touched a gun.  Public shooting days can help public sentiment as well as get others interested in firearms.  A strong gun culture helps reduce crime, and simply exercising one's rights helps prevent others from infringing upon them.  Also, I hope that a strong gun culture would dissuade statists (who generally despise gun rights) from moving in from other states (this could be a good concern for NH, for example).

Spreading freedom ideas.  One does not have to run for office to discuss political philosophy.  Writing letters to newspapers, pamphleteering, engaging others in conversation at the bar: all great pro-freedom activities.  It would be pretty neat to see, if many liberty-minded individuals are in an area, if civic organizations become popular to discuss and debate issues.

Participating in the free market.  The voluntary division of labor helps enhance all of our lives.  Libertarians might be able to help create a culture of freedom through their business.  For example, a bookstore that offers and promotes liberty books.  Or a pro-liberty newspaper.  

Providing alternatives to government "services."  Obviously, homeschooling is a big one.  Another big one is private charity.  My personal favorite is an alternative to Federal Reserve Notes.  In many cases, existing competition will be needed to make the switch.  If, after years of government monopoly, there were no private businesses to pick up the trash, then few people would support abolishing government trash pickup.  In some cases, the economics and politics is such that no private company would provide competition (such as, if everyone pays mandatory taxes for trash pickup).  but if a few laws are repealed or changed to allow consumers the choice of who they pay, private alternatives will be needed to complete the switch to the free market.

In short, a culture of liberty will be needed at least as much as political activism.  Do not write off those who do not wish to participate in the political process.  
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: anarchicluv on July 20, 2003, 08:50:28 pm
Misterbeanz,

Point conceded, but how successful do you think this project will be without political activity?

Participating in politics is certainly not the only way in which one can help this project succeed.  Check out the excellent post above by Jacobus on different ways that one who does not participate in politics can have a major effect on the success of the Free State.

How successful would politicians be at controlling our lives if they ceased to have any legitimacy with the people?  Voting only encourages them.

Jeremy
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: JonM on July 20, 2003, 08:53:51 pm
Quote
I was under the impression the FSP was designed to gather 20,000 pro-liberty people to work within the political process to effect change.

Working within the system does not necessarily mean running for office and voting.  There is plenty else to do to help create a free state:

Support homeschooling.  If you can, homeschool your own children.  Participate in homeschool networks and help others see an alternative to government "education" and hopefully use it themselves.  Homeschool networks not only help with public sentiment, but would make it easier for others to homeschool.  For example, busy parents may not have the time, resources, or education themselves to handle all aspects of their children's education.  Networks could help by providing group social activities, field trips, and provide tutor/teachers that could help with a "classroom" of students.

Gun rights.  I am of the opinion that most anti-gun nuts have never touched a gun.  Public shooting days can help public sentiment as well as get others interested in firearms.  A strong gun culture helps reduce crime, and simply exercising one's rights helps prevent others from infringing upon them.  Also, I hope that a strong gun culture would dissuade statists (who generally despise gun rights) from moving in from other states (this could be a good concern for NH, for example).

Spreading freedom ideas.  One does not have to run for office to discuss political philosophy.  Writing letters to newspapers, pamphleteering, engaging others in conversation at the bar: all great pro-freedom activities.  It would be pretty neat to see, if many liberty-minded individuals are in an area, if civic organizations become popular to discuss and debate issues.

Participating in the free market.  The voluntary division of labor helps enhance all of our lives.  Libertarians might be able to help create a culture of freedom through their business.  For example, a bookstore that offers and promotes liberty books.  Or a pro-liberty newspaper.  

Providing alternatives to government "services."  Obviously, homeschooling is a big one.  Another big one is private charity.  My personal favorite is an alternative to Federal Reserve Notes.  In many cases, existing competition will be needed to make the switch.  If, after years of government monopoly, there were no private businesses to pick up the trash, then few people would support abolishing government trash pickup.  In some cases, the economics and politics is such that no private company would provide competition (such as, if everyone pays mandatory taxes for trash pickup).  but if a few laws are repealed or changed to allow consumers the choice of who they pay, private alternatives will be needed to complete the switch to the free market.

In short, a culture of liberty will be needed at least as much as political activism.  Do not write off those who do not wish to participate in the political process.  

I see some of those actions as falling within the bounds of political activism, but that could just be me.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: anarchicluv on July 20, 2003, 09:22:37 pm
I see some of those actions as falling within the bounds of political activism, but that could just be me.

Politics:

1. The science of government; that part of ethics which has to do with the regulation and government of a nation or state, the preservation of its safety, peace, and prosperity, the defense of its existence and rights against foreign control or conquest, the augmentation of its strength and resources, and the protection of its citizens in their rights, with the preservation and improvement of their morals.

2. The management of a political party; the conduct and contests of parties with reference to political measures or the administration of public affairs; the advancement of candidates to office; in a bad sense, artful or dishonest management to secure the success of political candidates or parties; political trickery.[/i]
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Jacobus on July 20, 2003, 09:25:53 pm
I suppose you could consider something like discussing political philosophy as political activism, but the point is that it (and the other activities I listed) exist independently of the political process, i.e. running for office, promoting individuals who are running for office, voting, or lobbying politicians about legislation.
Title: Re:Bias in state advocacy and in research and dealing with opposition.
Post by: Zxcv on July 21, 2003, 02:55:06 pm
Interesting mix of responses to my comment that Wyoming is not a politics-saturated state. Some completely off the wall...   :)

Just because people don't spend their lives in politics, does not mean they are apathetic. Maybe it means they are not statists!

I think it can go either way, really. Nevada certainly has gone in a bad direction.

On the other hand, if we are the only political activists in the state, that is a good thing for us. It means opposition to the freedoms we want to increase, will be muted from the political/bureaucrat class. Things will go even better if our program is in line with the general culture, which it certainly is (self-reliance, mind your own business, personal relationships rather than group relationships, etc.). This is unlike the case in Nevada, where the political class is going in opposition to at least the natives, if not the newcomers.

Attempting to get somewhat back to Joe's original point, here are two scenarios having to do with letters to the editor:

1) In NH, the newspapers more statist and more influential. They pick and choose which letters get printed. The statist letter writers (typically people at the trough, teachers and bureaucrats) get a lot of print in the letters column. We have a hard time getting responses in.

2) In WY, there is only one statewide paper. It is not statist by normal measures, and prints every letter it gets that is not slander, etc. There are few politically active bureaucrats and teachers to fill the letters columns. A few FSP activists can completely dominate the letters columns. BTW, I also have a copy of these local papers from my trip to Wyoming: Fremont County Ranger, Laramie Boomerang, Lander Journal and Lusk Herald. All had letters/opinion pages. None had a letter. A couple had op-eds with a picture of the writer, probably not employees of the paper, but local citizens with a story to tell. Seems to me a corps of 50 well-written activists could essentially cover the entire state, with little opposition opinion, in the newspapers.

To me, it seems the more desireable situation, is the one we find in Wyoming.