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Author Topic: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP  (Read 80001 times)

citizen Winston

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PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« on: July 05, 2010, 04:12:34 pm »

I was told that once you goto PorcFest that you'll be itching to move ASAP!  However, that is not exactly how I am feeling although I wish that were the case.  After having visited PorcFest I still have some reservations concerning not so much New Hampshire, but the FSP and some of its participants. A little background; I am from the west coast and I would consider myself a small "l" libertarian or minarchist of the Ron Paul / Thomas E. Woods stripe.

I have never came into contact with so many anarchists at the same time and was surprised to see how they were represented both in numbers of people and events.  Having heard them out, I am certainly receptive to their views and tactics whereas before I just generally disregarded them completely.  That being said, I am still NOT for zero government, of course I do think it needs to be drastically curtailed.  I see anarchism as a state of transition, whereby warlordism and/or a tyrannical government (supported by a military-industrial complex) quickly supplants it.  I think it is much easier to win people over into supporting and maintaining a limited constitutional republic for which there has already been a precedent set forth than to hope to achieve a mass "paradigm shift" necessary to attain an anarchist utopia in equilibrium.  Now onto the main topic...

It really hit me when I was watching the Matt Simon (politico) vs Rich Paul (civil disobedience activist) debate about approaches to ending pot prohibition with former Gov. Gary Johnson.  I thought the debate or discussion was one of the best events, if not thee best at PorcFest 2010 and I was surprised at how reasonable and cooperative Rich Paul seemed towards Matt Simon's efforts - who I sympathized more with. 

I actually found myself applauding Rich Paul at times, like when he responded to the first questionnaire.... Curtis is his name, who approached the mic and with an aire of arrogance turned to the crowd pointed to his Voluntaryist shirt, turned back around and declared "I oppose what you are doing" to Matt Simon.  Its one thing to disagree with the effectiveness of the tactic but to actively OPPOSE it?  I probably wouldn't care so much, but I learned that he is one of the organizers so I figured his view carries more weight or is indicative of more participants than I'd like to think.  Am I attributing too much to this?  Its just discouraging to see people advocating not to vote at all, because I think voting and civil disobedience are not entirely incompatible.

I never understood why it was necessary to list NH towns and cities as either deemed better suited for "civil disobedience" types or "politicos" but now I see why thats important.  Is the schism that great?  I really want to move and participate in the political process, but I already face enough apathy and opposition in my home state, why move if I'll be facing opposition to my efforts from my so-called allies?  Maybe the politicos can help me out here, my perception is that they're being under represented...  Where are you!? Are there any FSP participants who are also active C4L members?

I just wanted to post these concerns up here, because I was not the only potential mover with them during the event.  Thanks.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2010, 12:04:06 am by citizen Winston »
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JasonPSorens

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2010, 04:20:00 pm »

I'm going to be honest. The schism is significant and deep. IMO, if Curtis really holds those views and wasn't just playing devil's advocate, he doesn't belong in the FSP. Just my honest opinion. We don't need people who think it's OK for the government to continue imprisoning people just so that he can have a black market to sell in. That's exactly the opposite of what we want, and exactly the kind of rent-seeking mentality we're fighting against.

Now, I was at the debate, and I didn't see anyone else defend Curtis' position, even the other agorists. I agree that the anarchists were well represented at Porc Fest - for the first time really. The thing that concerns me is not the anarchism; I used to be an anarcho-capitalist. What concerns me is the attitude that politics is immoral, and so are people who do it. That kind of mentality is inherently schismatic. The politicos think CD is fine, so long as it's well thought out and doesn't hurt anybody, but many of the CD anarchists apparently think that the politicos are wicked. That's an untenable situation.

I'm glad you brought this up, because the fact is that many people share your concerns. I will say that if you move somewhere other than Keene, you're unlikely to encounter Free Staters who oppose your work for liberty. But I am concerned that people like you will be turned off the FSP if we don't get a handle on what we really are and want to be - and present that image at our events.
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"Educate your children, educate yourselves, in the love for the freedom of others, for only in this way will your own freedom not be a gratuitous gift from fate. You will be aware of its worth and will have the courage to defend it." --Joaquim Nabuco (1883), Abolitionism

swamp_yankee

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2010, 05:13:38 pm »

Remember, FSP chose New Hampshire for a reason. New Hampshire is small, manageable and already has a strong undercurrent of liberty minded people. For example, did you know that the NH legislature is the third largest representative body in the world after Congress and the House of Commons. You can make a difference there and will probably find a niche eventually, even if its not among the FSP anarchists.  I agree that anarchy is adolescent and untenable.  But there is important work to do and some people are doing it.
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BigJoe

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2010, 05:45:44 pm »

I'm going to be honest. The schism is significant and deep. IMO, if Curtis really holds those views and wasn't just playing devil's advocate, he doesn't belong in the FSP. Just my honest opinion. We don't need people who think it's OK for the government to continue imprisoning people just so that he can have a black market to sell in. That's exactly the opposite of what we want, and exactly the kind of rent-seeking mentality we're fighting against.

Now, I was at the debate, and I didn't see anyone else defend Curtis' position, even the other agorists. I agree that the anarchists were well represented at Porc Fest - for the first time really. The thing that concerns me is not the anarchism; I used to be an anarcho-capitalist. What concerns me is the attitude that politics is immoral, and so are people who do it. That kind of mentality is inherently schismatic. The politicos think CD is fine, so long as it's well thought out and doesn't hurt anybody, but many of the CD anarchists apparently think that the politicos are wicked. That's an untenable situation.

I'm glad you brought this up, because the fact is that many people share your concerns. I will say that if you move somewhere other than Keene, you're unlikely to encounter Free Staters who oppose your work for liberty. But I am concerned that people like you will be turned off the FSP if we don't get a handle on what we really are and want to be - and present that image at our events.


don't think I have ever heard of a former ancap before.  When you were, was it on deontological or consequentialist grounds?  what got you to think that the state is necessary?
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rossby

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2010, 06:14:11 pm »

what got you to think that the state is necessary?

Did he say it was?
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Denis Goddard

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2010, 06:48:10 pm »

I had similar concerns about this PorcFest.

When I moved to NH in 2005, I was a Libertarian, and still largely a Republican. I thought the war in Iraq was necessary. I had serious concerns about America's border security. I thought that any talk of "secession" was at best irresponsible and at worst counterproductive.

The FSP's strength has been its big-tent inclusiveness: if you want to reduce the size and scope of Government, you belong here -- no matter how much you want it reduced, no matter how you go about bringing that reduction (so long as it's peaceful).

Some of the more prominent FSPers lately -- I am thinking of specifically Curtis, Ian, and a few others -- are "macho flash libertarians". They do not try hard to accommodate & welcome people who are like I was when I came to NH. They show respect for anarchists who are willing to perform civil disobedience. Anyone else gets the subtle message that the FSP is not about "their kind."

The FSP Board should yank back the reigns on these folks. Maybe the FTL live reads should clarify that the FSP is for Constitutionalists and small-government Republicans and Democrats, just as much as it is for anarchists and voluntaryists -- "The host of Free Talk Live does not speak for the Free State Project". Similarly, there should have been much more positive, reassuring vibes from the organizers and emcees to the folks in attendance who, like Winston here, are not anarchists.

Just to be clear -- I like Curtis and Ian both as people. Curtis did an awesome job with much of PF; Ian's show is of inestimable value. Both should take the opportunity to stop talking, however, when interacting to people who are less far off the deep end than they are.

The schism is not about Politics vs. Div Dis; it's not about Anarchists vs. Small-Government types.
It's about Intolerance vs. Tolerance of dissenting views.

Denis Goddard

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2010, 06:53:36 pm »

if you move somewhere other than Keene, you're unlikely to encounter Free Staters who oppose your work for liberty.
^this

Come to any NH Liberty Alliance event -- such as the Liberty Dinner this weekend. You'll meet Free Staters who have won political office -- including seats in the NH House of Representatives. People who are trusted and admired by the people in their towns.

Dreepa

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2010, 07:16:56 pm »

I  Maybe the politicos can help me out here, my perception is that they're being under represented...  Where are you!? Are there any FSP participants who are also active C4L members?

I just wanted to post these concerns up here, because I was not the only potential mover with them during the event.  Thanks.

there were lots of people who work 'in the system' or politicos as you call them.
The C4L is 'active' in NH but most of us are already working in the NHLA so C4L (which came after)... is harder to get people active in C4L because of the same work being done on a local level here in NH with RLCNH, CNHT and NHLA.
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JaqEboy

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2010, 07:23:18 pm »

...did you know that the NH legislature is the third largest representative body in the world after Congress and the House of Commons...

I thought the other larger legislative body was the Russian Duma, not the UK HOC.
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freedomroad

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2010, 07:28:07 pm »

The majority of the fsp moving anarchists that I know in NH do politics.  It's no big deal that some of them don't. 

Curtis is just a person.  I don't consider the founder of the fsp, the head of the fsp, a certain organizer or anyone else to have more important views than anyone else.  People are people and all of these people are volunteers.  We don't have to agree on everything, just the statement of intent.  And many of the folks I work with in NH aren't even FSP folks and wouldn't sign the statement of intent.  They just happen to live in NH, be active in politics, and agree with me on issue X so we work together on issue X.
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JaqEboy

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2010, 07:30:56 pm »

...
The FSP Board should yank back the reigns on these folks
....

It's about Intolerance vs. Tolerance of dissenting views.


You're so funny when you do things like this Denis!  ;D
I mean, I guess you're poking fun at the board, but... wow, maybe you aren't...
You mean you could really say both of those things in the same post??? and mean them both??? Doesn't that make your brain hurt??? Wait, maybe you're trying to say you think the board should become more intolerant - I'm so confused.
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Dreepa

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2010, 07:54:40 pm »

...did you know that the NH legislature is the third largest representative body in the world after Congress and the House of Commons...

I thought the other larger legislative body was the Russian Duma, not the UK HOC.

I think NH is really 5th.

US Congress
UK HOC
Russian Duma
Indian Parliament

all have more than NH.
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Rich Goldman

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2010, 07:56:43 pm »

The statement regards English speaking legislatures (as I understood/report it)
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BigJoe

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2010, 08:13:41 pm »

what got you to think that the state is necessary?

Did he say it was?

he said he used to be an AnCap, so I assumed that meant he thought it was necessary.  Sorry if that assumption was incorrect.
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JaqEboy

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Re: PorcFest 2010 raises reservations about joining the FSP
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2010, 08:39:43 pm »

Wow, Jason, I'm surprised at you!

I'm going to be honest. The schism is significant and deep. IMO, if Curtis really holds those views and wasn't just playing devil's advocate, he doesn't belong in the FSP.

It's my understanding that the condition for being an FSP member is the SoI, not agreement with Matt Simon's strategy and tactics. Are you threatening a newly-coined rule that allows you to unilaterally expel productive members because they oppose Matt's choices? Are you joining Denis' intolerance wing? This should probably be brought to a vote of the members or at least the board before you begin pulling the dictator's lever!

Just my honest opinion. We don't need people who think it's OK for the government to continue imprisoning people just so that he can have a black market to sell in. That's exactly the opposite of what we want, and exactly the kind of rent-seeking mentality we're fighting against.

That's an outrageous slander to state that Curtis is in favor of the government imprisoning people - he's obviously a victim of that (due to, in my opinion, his ill-considered CD involvement). You're failing to grasp even the most basic libertarian principles here (and I know that the FSP is not a libertarian only club).


Now, I was at the debate, and I didn't see anyone else defend Curtis' position, even the other agorists. I agree that the anarchists were well represented at Porc Fest - for the first time really. The thing that concerns me is not the anarchism; I used to be an anarcho-capitalist. What concerns me is the attitude that politics is immoral, and so are people who do it.

Yes, well that argument has been had and settled in the libertarian movement back in the 70's. Libertarians are for rights and are inherently against majoritarian voting of people's rights away, so it's an absolute anti-concept to then advocate "voting for freedom". The argument politicals who call themselves "libertarians" make is that, "well, I think we should do it because it'll work", ie, the pragmatic argument. Of course it's evil to engage in voting for candidates and legislation - that was settled a long time ago. The issue for most to consider is will I do just a little evil, because I think it'll do more good? If you can live with your conscience, then, go ahead (but, best to call yourselves something other than a consistent libertarian).

That kind of mentality is inherently schismatic. The politicos think CD is fine, so long as it's well thought out and doesn't hurt anybody, but many of the CD anarchists apparently think that the politicos are wicked. That's an untenable situation.

See above. I should mention that the other fundamental belief of the politicals is that they can win something with this pragmatic approach. I think you'll find that you can't - the system is owned and rigged (too long of a story to get into here).

I'm glad you brought this up, because the fact is that many people share your concerns. I will say that if you move somewhere other than Keene, you're unlikely to encounter Free Staters who oppose your work for liberty. But I am concerned that people like you will be turned off the FSP if we don't get a handle on what we really are and want to be - and present that image at our events.

I thought that the discussion that the FSP was "only the bus" and couldn't favor any one ideological variant, was already had and resolved. I could be wrong - I wasn't there.

Please tell me that you get the point and that you are not siding with the intolerants and playing favorites. Then, the FSP would have a really big problem reconciling being for freedom and then making power plays to squash opinions of members - how would you justify that, other than just that you have the power?
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