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Author Topic: 288,504 reasons not to vote for NH  (Read 13516 times)

Greg B.

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288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« on: June 28, 2003, 02:28:32 pm »

In regard to what causes a state to be considered, the Free State Project FAQ page says: “Obviously population is the critical factor.”  Unfortunately, a lot of the discussion regarding which state should be chosen has shoved this “critical factor” to the side.

It’s no secret that the Free State Project is a very close two horse race between New Hampshire and Wyoming.  I’m pretty surprised it’s as close as it is.  When you compare the number of statists (Gore and Nader voters in the 2000 election), New Hampshire had 288,504 and Wyoming had 60, 481.  Assuming 20,000 porcupines move to either state no matter which is chosen, we will be outnumbered 14 to 1 in New Hampshire but only 3 to 1 in Wyoming.

There were even more voters for Ralph Nader (22,156) in the 2000 election in New Hampshire than the number of Free Staters (20,000) that will be moving there if the state is chosen.  If New Hampshire is chosen, I can imagine a newspaper article with the headline “Freedom lovers don’t do the math: Free State Project chooses a state where they are outnumbered by Nader voters.”

I initially thought Wyoming was a poor choice because of the lack of jobs.  But it’s been shown that 36,263 new jobs (per Jason’s post) are expected to be created in Wyoming alone between 2000 and 2010.  And the Fort Collins area, just a 40-45 minute door to door commute from Cheyenne, has a population of 260,000+ with 215,000 expected new jobs (many of them being at high tech companies) between 1997 and 2010.

When you combine the Wyoming population (low, fiscally conservative, and socially moderate) with the job opportunities in and close to Wyoming, the choice seems easy.  Obviously, something else is going on.

I find it interesting that the most vocal supporter of Wyoming, Keith (Freedom Road), lives in Tennessee (where I happen to live).  But, to my knowledge, most of the strongest New Hampshire supporters live in New Hampshire.

Consider this thought experiment.  Hypothetically speaking, let’s imagine that Keith and each of the strongest New Hampshire supporters where all born, raised, and spent their whole lives in Indianapolis, Indiana.  If that were the case, would Keith still believe that Wyoming is the best state?  I think he would.  On the other hand, if the strongest New Hampshire supporters had spent their whole lives in Indiana, would they still be arguing as passionately for New Hampshire?  I believe the answer is absolutely not.

My point is that some people, particularly when it comes to New Hampshire, seem to be supporting what is the best state for them and not what is the best state for the Free State Project.

If you believe in your heart that New Hampshire is the state that gives the FSP the best chance to succeed, then voting for New Hampshire is the right thing to do.  But I think a lot of New Hampshire supporters need to think long and hard about why they are supporting a state with 288,504 statists rather than one with 60,481 statists.

I feel that each person should choose a state because they feel it has the best chance of succeeding, not because you happen to live in or close to that state and would rather not move away from what has been home.

Just because a group of FSP members desperately wants New Hampshire to be chosen and does a great job of cheering on their state does not mean that it is the state that gives the FSP the best chance to succeed.  

It’s the difference between making a choice with your heart and making it with your head.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2003, 09:32:48 am by Greg B. »
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StevenN

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2003, 04:33:37 pm »

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But I think a lot of New Hampshire supporters need to think long and hard about why they are supporting a state with 288,504 statists rather than one with 60,481 statists.

Sorry Greg, but this is one of my pet peeves. I really dislike the assumption that "Democrats are statists and Republicans are libertarians who just don't know it yet". Why? Because I've known many R's and D's in my lifetime. I can't think of one Republican friend of mine who'd embrace more social freedoms. Most are of the "family fascist" types: that the entire purpose of gov't and its' citizens are to support the "family". However, a good many Democrats I know are somewhat receptive to libertarian ideas. Of course, they're in favor of social freedoms. And certainly for a more "humble" foreign policy. But I believe and increasing number of liberals are becoming disenchanted with bureaucracy. They see vast amounts of resources being spent on the poor and not much actually going to them. I think they'd be for a "compromise": something like a citizens' dividend from natural resources.

And many Greens would welcome the FSP (ask someone from NH!). They would most certainly be allies in keeping the Federal gov't out (they favor de-centralized gov't).

But the bigger point is: you can't just make a determination about how liberty-friendly a state is based on one Presidential election. National politics don't always reflect citizen's true preferences. There are many states (IN, for one; I think maybe lots of Midwestern and Southern states are like this) where one party may handily win presidential elections and the other Congressional and/or Gubernatorial races. I think the local populations' "inclination" towards liberty is the most important factor - even more than voting population. If you want to use politics as a measure of this, you're better off looking at state officials, their platforms, voting records, what happens when they don't deliver what they promise, et al. I've looked at that for both WY and NH (admittedly more for NH), and I think that NH is an excellent choice (and I don't live in NH)! Of course, not to say that WY isn't a great choice, too. As I've said before, the FSP only has a chance of succeeding in those two states, IMO.

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I feel that each person should choose a state because they feel it has the best chance of succeeding, not because you happen to live in or close to that state and would rather not move away from what has been home.

Does this also apply to Westerners who refuse to consider any eastern state simply because of a percieved lack of "open spaces" and "big" cities? I think for every easterner who doesn't want to "move away", there's a westerner who feels the exact same way.
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RacecaR

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2003, 04:48:51 pm »

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It’s no secret that the Free State Project is a very close two horse race between New Hampshire and Wyoming.

You must be joking.  I don't think New Hampshire is even in the top 5 states.  The top two states are Wyoming and Montana from what I see.  
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ZionCurtain

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2003, 04:56:57 pm »

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It?s no secret that the Free State Project is a very close two horse race between New Hampshire and Wyoming.

You must be joking.  I don't think New Hampshire is even in the top 5 states.  The top two states are Wyoming and Montana from what I see.  
I am beginning to agree with RacecaR. NH is just more vocal in their propoganda, while most sensible people can see through it and make an educated decision.
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mtPete

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2003, 04:58:14 pm »

steven you're badly steriotyping republicans. I don't know how it is where you are but the GOP around MT arn't like that.

And as far as Greens go they are as much enemies of Liberty as any because of their war on private protery rights. Next to the feds they are the biggest threat to our freedom nationwide, and particularly out west.
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Greg B.

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2003, 06:04:22 pm »

Steven,

I agree that Democrats have more in common with libertarians on social issues (such as the legalization of drugs, gambling, prostitution, etc.), but overall I think Republicans have more in common with us.  Higher taxes, gun control, unnecessary regulation, public (government) schools, entitlement programs, affirmative action, etc. are all promoted much more by Democrats.  So, we’ll have to agree to disagree on this issue.

In addition, I totally agree that it is just as wrong for a Westerner to have an anti-East Coast bias as vice versa (and that an equal percentage of people on both sides are guilty of being biased).  As far as my personal opinion is concerned, if New Hampshire had Wyoming’s demographics, I’d argue just as strongly for New Hampshire.

RaceCar,

If you think I’m joking, you should check out all the latest polls on this site.  I’m not saying I know for sure that they reflect what the whole group of FSP members thinks, but a lot of the people who voted in the poll had New Hampshire number one.

Greg
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StevenN

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2003, 06:09:25 pm »

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NH is just more vocal in their propoganda, while most sensible people can see through it and make an educated decision.

No offense, but these sorts of comments are making me question the FSP and its' chances at. It's all the crap along the line of "real freedom-lovers can't possibly vote for NH! Those money-grubbing fair-weather friends just want jobs and cities!" Case in point: the recent discussion of why NH supporters should vote for ID. Why are we told that they should choose ID 2nd? Because - of course - all those NH supporters are out for are jobs, weather, and cities!

Maybe a more appropriate response would be "most sensible people who rank the criteria and other factors precisely how I rank them would not choose NH". It's all a matter of how you rank the various factors!! For example, I've been examining which state has the best chance of success, given how I weigh the factors. I think that, maybe since I'm not in the FSP and have no plans of doing so, I can bring a different perspective to the table. For example, a rough draft of how I'd rank the factors for success would be:

1. "libertarian" culture (hard to quantify, comes from a multitude of sources)

2. how "receptive" the state is (newspaper articles, how warm and accepting the people are, will the FSP be viewed as a "takeover"?)

3. size of state gov't per capita

4. elections (is there "fusion"?, ballot machines, having experienced candidates helping out, access to the government, cost of elections, and income adjusted for cost-of-living)

5. population

Now, given this criteria - which I don't belive is wholly irrational - I've determined that NH has the best chance of success. If you have different rankings of factors, as long as it's reasonable (putting things like weather and borders high, I would consider unreasonable).

Just look at how NH supporters on this board tend to rank their states. More often than not, it's WY second, with ME and VT relatively low. Because I think most commited to finding the best state - regardless of whether or not it's in the east or if there's cities around! To me, they seem less partial than many who would rank all the western states first! The NH suporters I'm familiar with have indicated they'd move where the FSP decides, including the west. Would the vehement western supporters feel the same way? Greg, for all your railing against the bias of native NH supporters, I think the bias of some native westerners is just the same. There's the attitude that, "I'm not voting for any non-west state because freedom can't possibly exist anywhere than the west". To me, that's just as biased. Even worse, there may be those who criticise NH supporters for choosing NH because of the jobs and cities; but at the same time demand on a western state so they can have "plenty" of land and be away from cities. Seems hypocritical to me.
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RacecaR

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2003, 06:31:43 pm »

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If you think I’m joking, you should check out all the latest polls on this site.

I don't know where to find the polls.  But I'd be glad to look at them if you can give me a link.
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Greg B.

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2003, 06:33:01 pm »

Steven,

I have one more comment that I forgot to mention in my last post.  Let's say for argument's sake that we can recruit equally from both the Democrats and Republicans.  Since Wyoming had 213,000 voters in the 2000 election and New Hampshire had 567,000, wouldn't Wyoming still be the better choice since we would have many fewer people to convert?

In response to your last comment, as I said in my second post, I TOTALLY agree that it is wrong for any member to be biased against East, West, big city, small city, open space, closed space, etc.  We should all try our best to choose the state that gives us the best chance to succeed.

I've lived in cities as small as 5000 people in a rural Southern town and I've also lived in a studio apartment just north of downtown Chicago.  I think that you can be happy anywhere you're at as long as you've got the right attitude.  And I can't relate to people who say "I can't live in the Northeast" or "I can't live out West."

The good thing is that wherever we end up, we'll be around a bunch of libertarians!

But choosing the best state for success is the most important decision we face.  And, the way I see it, Wyoming gives us the best chance to succeed.  I respect anybody else's decision to disagree if they genuinely believe the FSP has a better chance of succeeding elsewhere.  Since you don't live anywhere close to New Hampshire and seem to be judging the state based on its merits, I totally respect your opinion.

Greg
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Greg B.

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2003, 06:37:13 pm »

Hey RaceCar,

Here is the link to the latest poll:

http://forum.freestateproject.org/index.php?board=5;action=display;threadid=2101

Like I said, I'm not sure how this represents the FSP as a whole, but it's the best information we've got.

Greg
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jgmaynard

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2003, 07:00:02 pm »

In regard to what causes a state to be considered, the Free State Project FAQ page says: “Obviously population is the critical factor.”  Unfortunately, a lot of the discussion regarding which state should be chosen has shoved this “critical factor” to the side.

IF the electoral systems were all the same, it might be possible to compare the two. But since they're not, it's comparing apples and oranges. Most state rep races in NH only cost ~ $500 - In some CANDIDATE states, a state rep race costs $100,000 or more. You can run 200 candidates for state house in NH for that amount of money. In NH (and VT, but not most states), you can run fusion candidates - Lib/Reps or Lib/Dems or even Lib/Dem/Rep by getting just a couple dozen people to write you in during the primaries, so you pick up the straight ticket voters. In 2002, 57 state rep candidates ran as fusion candidates, and they ALL won. Multi-seat districts means your candidate only has to come in 5th, or 7th or whatever to win in many areas. One NH state rep in 2002 won with only 720 votes... One is 18 years old, and just graduated from high school.... A typical state rep candidate MIGHT have 6 volunteers... 20k activists in NH would give each of our candidates for state house 10x as many. Even 10k activists would dominate NH politics. The NH state house is much, much more accessable to the FSP than anywhere else, except perhaps VT.

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When you compare the number of statists (Gore and Nader voters in the 2000 election),

Bush is NO friend of liberty. Most Republicans are statists as bad as most Democrats. Democrats will lock arms and jump off a cliff... The Republicans do it single file. The result is the same.
PLUS Gore didn't come close to winning NH, Bush came close to losing it. Bush I and II are very much disliked in NH... We consider them RINO's. How could a state where BUCHANAN won the R primary be filled with statists?  ::) Here's another reason we don't like Dubya.. When he was on the campaign trail in NH in 2000, he promised a group of people at a parade that he would buy ice cream for anyone who came out to do a photo-op with him. About 200 people came out for ice cream with Dubya, and when they got there, HE REFUSED TO BUY ICE CREAM FOR THE CHILDREN HE PROMISED IT TO. He only bought it for a couple kids who sat with him for pictures. It may be small, but it showed a lack of character and honesty.
When we were given the choice between a true, fiscally responsible person for Governor (Craig Benson) and a tax-loving Democrat (Marc Fernald) in 2002, Benson won 2:1.

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New Hampshire had 288,504 and Wyoming had 60, 481.  Assuming 20,000 porcupines move to either state no matter which is chosen, we will be outnumbered 14 to 1 in New Hampshire but only 3 to 1 in Wyoming.

People and politics aren't that simple. Sorry. When the Reps are right, we work with them,... When the Dems are right we work with them. Sometimes, they are both wrong, and we work alone. The LPNH has had far more success than any other state LP party. When you want something done in politics, you have to play nice.

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I find it interesting that the most vocal supporter of Wyoming, Keith (Freedom Road), lives in Tennessee (where I happen to live).  But, to my knowledge, most of the strongest New Hampshire supporters live in New Hampshire.

Your knowledge is wrong. Myself, Rich Tomasso, George Reich and Michelle Dumas are in NH.... Amanda Phillips is in Mass, Tony is in Connecticut, Keth Murphy in Baltimore, Dave Mincin in Pittsburg, Rick LaPoint is in Arizona, Bruce Morgan is in Texas, Jackie is in Seattle, and we also have many, many supporters from around the nation and Canada; even as far away as Vancouver.

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if the strongest New Hampshire supporters had spent their whole lives in Indiana, would they still be arguing as passionately for New Hampshire?  I believe the answer is absolutely not.


See above. :D

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My point is that some people, particularly when it comes to New Hampshire, seem to be supporting what is the best state for them and not what is the best state for the Free State Project.

There's a reason there are people from around the United States and Canada supporting New Hampshire.... For many of them, a western state would be MUCH easier to move to... Yet they recognize NH has many, many benefits that other states don't offer....

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If you believe in your heart that New Hampshire is the state that gives the FSP the best chance to succeed, then voting for New Hampshire is the right thing to do.  But I think a lot of New Hampshire supporters need to think long and hard about why they are supporting a state with 288,504 statists rather than one with 60,481 statists.

Because a vote for Bush was NO better? :D At least spending all that time looking for his mythical WMD will keep him too busy to destroy the economy further...  ::)
Our Governor, Craig Benson (a REAL fiscal conservative who the FSP-NH is on a first name basis with) met with us yesterday, and asked us to "Come on up, we'd love to have you".  A VERY libertarian governor was elected 2:1 in New Hampshire just last year, and he is now very interested in signing on to the FSP as a friend...

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I feel that each person should choose a state because they feel it has the best chance of succeeding, not because you happen to live in or close to that state and would rather not move away from what has been home.

As I've shown, we aren't. Are you?

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Just because a group of FSP members desperately wants New Hampshire to be chosen and does a great job of cheering on their state does not mean that it is the state that gives the FSP the best chance to succeed.  

Nope. It doesn't. New Hampshire has 101 reasons to be chosen as the free state
But there's still another BIG advantage to choosing NH - Our very large, very efficent, very effective media machine can stay plugged in where it is - It would take us a while to re-establish media contacts somewhere else like we have in New Hampshire.

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It’s the difference between making a choice with your heart and making it with your head.

Don't worry. We'll forgive you if you don't see all the amazing advantages New Hampshire has; the heart can be hard to ignore. We're using our heads. :)

Most NH supporters, where ever they are from, have few to no opt outs. I'm committed enough to this project to have no opt-outs...  Are you?
« Last Edit: June 28, 2003, 07:37:46 pm by jgmaynard »
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Matt Nellans

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2003, 07:22:49 pm »

When I think of New Hampshire I think of its state motto, it has water access, first in primaries, but there are lots of people.  Wyoming has less people, but no water.  Frankly I doubt if 75% of Americans could pick out either state on a map but I know this discussion is important to us.  
Also while there are differences in the platform of the dems and reps I think they are basically the same party in substance.  
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StevenN

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2003, 07:56:08 pm »

Greg,

My apologies. I was typing up my second response while you were posting, so I didn't get to read it until now. :-[

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In addition, I totally agree that it is just as wrong for a Westerner to have an anti-East Coast bias as vice versa (and that an equal percentage of people on both sides are guilty of being biased).  As far as my personal opinion is concerned, if New Hampshire had Wyoming’s demographics, I’d argue just as strongly for New Hampshire.

OK, now we're talkin' sense! I'm happy to agree to disagree on this point. I think if you place a heavy weighting on population, WY is definately the best choice. But if you don't put such a heavy weight on it, I think NH can be the best. At least the dividing factor is something that is merely just opinion, and not based on something like weather or geography.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2003, 08:00:32 pm by StevenN »
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Greg B.

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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2003, 04:48:43 pm »

Jgmaynard,

I agree that Bush is no friend of liberty.  I happen to think that most Democrat and Republican politicians (an exception being Ron Paul) are more or less socialists.  The key question is whether it will be easier for us to convince people who vote for Republicans or people who vote for Democrats to join our cause.  I believe that people who typically vote Republican are going to be much easier to convince.

Also, even if you assume we will be able to recruit an equal amount of people from both parties, Wyoming is still the better choice.  The reason is that its population is much lower than New Hampshire’s and thus we don’t need to bring nearly as many people to our side.

By the way, I totally agree that New Hampshire has the strongest libertarian party.  And I admire the passion of the New Hampshire porcupines.  Frankly, I wish New Hampshire had Wyoming’s population so the choice would be easy.

I still stand by what I said about a lot of the New Hampshire supporters living in or close to New Hampshire.  Four out of the eleven people that you mentioned live in New Hampshire and two more live close to New Hampshire.  The group of people I have seen that support Wyoming do not live in or close to Wyoming at a percentage that high.

In addition, I acknowledge the fact that New Hampshire becomes more attractive when you consider their voting for Benson by a 2:1 margin.  It’s really puzzling that so many people would vote for Gore, though.  The two don’t seem to mix, but there must be some reason.

You asked if I’m supporting a state based on its merits rather than whether or not I live close to it.  Here’s some info about me and you can decide for yourself.  I live in Tennessee which is very far away from both Wyoming and New Hampshire.  And since I signed up for the FSP, I first supported New Hampshire, then Delaware, before finally deciding on Wyoming after reading Keith and Tim’s state reports.  So, I like to think I’ve had an open mind throughout the process.

What convinces me that Wyoming is the best choice is three things:

1.   Wyoming is #1 when it comes to the fewest number of voters with 213,000 in the 2000 election (New Hampshire is #10 with 567,000)
2.   Wyoming is #3 in citizen ideology towards small government principles (New Hampshire is #4)
3.   Wyoming has enough jobs to absorb 20,000 people (36,263 new jobs expected in Wyoming between 2000-2010 and 215,000+ new jobs, many with high tech companies, are estimated to be created in the Fort Collins area between 1997 and 2010).

Basically, I lean towards Wyoming because of its low population.  If there weren’t enough jobs in Wyoming, I’d go with New Hampshire.

Therefore, New Hampshire will likely get my #2 vote.  I may be wrong, but dealing with fewer people makes Wyoming #1.  I’d rather be in a situation where the number of people who can derail our efforts is limited.

However, if New Hampshire is chosen, I’ll be up there fighting right beside you.  And if Wyoming is chosen, I’ll support making New Hampshire the second Free State.  We’re going to make this work no matter where we go.

Greg
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Re:288,504 reasons not to vote for NH
« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2003, 05:04:49 pm »

Hey now, don't bash the greens too hard! I was a green before the FSP convinced me on economic issues.

Greens are a step in the right direction for the FSP, as it shows the populace is willing to consider dumping the republicrats that currently infest politics.

That said, I think NH is a really icky choice for the FSP. I love the culture and the people and the support we have there, but the population is already on the verge of being too big, and it stands to reason that the population is going to explode in the next 40 years as urban sprawl takes over. Then we'll be 20k in a state with 3 million people. What the hell are we going to do then?

I favor Wyoming, personally, but I think all of the states have considerable merits, save ID and NH (both too large and getting larger)
« Last Edit: June 29, 2003, 05:07:54 pm by ZuG »
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