Friday, January 31, 2014

Ontario LP candidate profiled in Niagara Falls Review

Stefanos Karatopis profile | Niagara Falls Review - Ray Spiteri::

January 30, 2014: "If the government does a lot less, individuals can do a lot more.

That’s the ideology Ontario should adopt as it tries to get out from underneath an $11.7-million deficit and $272 billion of debt, says Libertarian party candidate Stefanos Karatopis.

"'The party is the same as which I am for: Less government inference,' says Karatopis, who is new to politics having never run for public office before. 'There is, I think, a problem with control, overzealous, overregulation. There’s just too much control on private property. We cannot run any businesses. It’s too much red tape to get through.'

"Karatopis says he was approached by the Libertarian party to represent them for the Feb. 13 provincial Niagara Falls riding byelection.

"He says the party subscribes to many of the same things as the Niagara Landowners Association, of which Karatopis is a director. 'I noticed with the Libertarians, they are very similar to the landowners in such a way as being able to profit off your private property and your property rights,' he says. 'Basically, without property rights we’d have no liberty.'"

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Charlie Earl wages his last campaign, for Ohio governor

Libertarian Candidate Charlie Earl: Voters Are Listening | - Carl Wicklander:

January 21, 2014 - "In the Buckeye State, ... the Ohio Legislature passed and Governor Kasich signed a law that would have required minor party candidates to accumulate more than 20,000 signatures by February 5 to become eligible for the November ballot. A federal judge issued a temporary injunction against the law and an appeals court denied the state’s appeal, opening a pathway for other candidates.

"For Charlie Earl, one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit against the state and a Libertarian Party candidate for governor, this means everything. A former Republican member of the Ohio General Assembly, Earl is also a former radio broadcaster and college instructor, and the affability needed in both jobs is readily apparent as he talks about his career and hopes for Ohio."

"After term-limiting himself in 1984, he is making a final attempt to influence the political world. In an interview, Earl said he is unlike the other participants in the gubernatorial race because he does not see the office as a stepping stone to the next political office. Part of his appeal, Earl says, is that this is his last election....

"All the usual obstacles for independents and minor parties exist for Charlie Earl, but he is not discouraged. In at least two polls where his name was specifically mentioned, he received six percent while the major candidates have fluctuated.

"'I think people are listening this year,' he said. 'The problem is letting them know we’re here.'"

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

NZ school cuts playground rules; bullying & vandalism drop

Auckland school ditches playtime rules and loses bullies|

January 26, 2014 - "Ripping up the playground rulebook is having incredible effects on children at an Auckland school.

"Chaos may reign at Swanson Primary School with children climbing trees, riding skateboards and playing bullrush during playtime, but surprisingly the students don't cause bedlam, the principal says.

"The school is actually seeing a drop in bullying, serious injuries and vandalism, while concentration levels in class are increasing.

"Principal Bruce McLachlan rid the school of playtime rules as part of a successful university experiment.... Swanson School signed up to the study by AUT and Otago University just over two years ago, with the aim of encouraging active play.

"However, the school took the experiment a step further by abandoning the rules completely, much to the horror of some teachers at the time....

"When the university study wrapped up at the end of last year the school and researchers were amazed by the results."

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

LP of Canada wants Meyers expropriation reversed

Libe­­­­­­­rtarians Call for Reversal on Canadian Military’s Expropriation of Farmer’s Land :: Wire Service Media:

January 27, 2014 - "Libertarian Party of Canada Leader Katrina Chowne is calling on the federal government to respect Canadian citizens' rights and to reverse its recent decision to expropriate a working family's land in order to expand the footprint of the Department of National Defence.

"The recent expropriation of a working family's land by the Canadian military offers Prime Minister Harper and his Conservative government a chance to clearly demonstrate their unwavering support for private property rights in Canada.

"The Canadian government has expropriated the property of Frank and Marjorie Meyers of Trenton Ontario in order to expand our military's capacity to protect our properties from invaders and foreign conquerors. The Meyers farm was granted to them in 1798 - before confederation....

"Meyers said he was approached to sell the land for market value about seven years ago, but he refused the offer. Now he says he's lost about 235 acres of farmland to the Department of National Defence. The spokesperson for Minister of National Defence Rob Nicholson said this expropriation was "critically important to the country and to the local community."

"While the Libertarian Party of Canada recognizes the need for a National Defence to protect our people and our rights, we call out the blatant irony that the federal government would seize upon one family's rights in the name of protecting others."

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Also see: Save Frank and Marjorie Myers's Farm 

Monday, January 27, 2014

Republican Liberty Caucus gains strength in Congress

Libertarian wing of GOP gains strength in Congress | - Susan Ferrechio:

January 24, 2014 - "A few times each month, a couple dozen House Republican lawmakers gather in a meeting room in a building adjacent to Capitol to discuss ideas and legislative proposals that focus on limited government, reducing the debt and maintaining individual rights.

"The group considers itself conservative with a libertarian emphasis. They call themselves the Liberty Caucus and believe that in order for the GOP to win more elections in the future, the party must begin embracing their libertarian-minded philosophy because voters are beginning to demand it, particularly in the wake of government data collection revelations that some believe infringe on privacy rights.

"'I think you are seeing a movement in the Republican Party where it is becoming more liberty minded,' Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, a member of the Liberty Caucus, told the Washington Examiner.... Labrador said younger Republicans especially are beginning to embrace this libertarian-minded view point....

"The philosophy of the caucus dovetails with the GOP's conservative wing on some issues, such as debt reduction, reining in government spending and opposition to the new health care law. But it differs on others, in particular on national security. While many Liberty Caucus members are opposed to the government surveillance program that has permitted officials to gather huge amounts of private phone and internet data in an effort to thwart terrorism, most mainstream GOP lawmakers have shown far less opposition and have defended it as necessary for preserving national security."

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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Private city under construction in Nigeria

New, privatized African city heralds climate apartheid | Environment | -Martin Lukacs, True North, The Guardian:

January 21, 2014 - "Just off Lagos, Nigeria's coast, an artificial island is emerging from the sea. A foundation, built of sand dredged from the ocean floor, stretches over ten kilometres. Promotional videos depict what is to come: a city of soaring buildings, housing for 250,000 people, and a central boulevard to match Paris' Champs-Élysées and New York's Fifth Avenue. Privately constructed, it will also be privately administered and supplied with electricity, water, mass transit, sewage and security. It is the 'future Hong Kong of Africa,' anticipates Nigeria's World Bank director

"Welcome to Eko Atlantic, a city whose 'whole purpose', its developers say, is to 'arrest the ocean's encroachment'.... To defend against the coastal erosion and flooding, the city is being surrounded by the 'Great Wall of Lagos', a sea defence barrier made of 100,000 five-ton concrete blocks. Eko Atlantic will be a 'sustainable city, clean and energy efficient with minimal carbon emissions,' offer jobs, prosperity and new land for Nigerians, and serve as a bulwark in the fight against the impacts of climate change."

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Saturday, January 25, 2014

Paul is now the 2016 GOP frontrunner - Atlantic

Rand Paul Is the 2016 Republican Frontrunner - Peter Beinart - The Atlantic:

January 22, 2014 - "If Chris Christie was ever the frontrunner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, he isn’t anymore. All along, the theory behind his candidacy was that he could overcome his lack of conservative bona fides with a combination of personality, competence, electability, and money. Bridgegate undermines all four.

"In the minds of many voters, Christie’s personality has morphed from brash to bully. It’s harder to look competent when your top aides egregiously abused power under your nose.... Marist and Quinnipiac, whose surveys showed Clinton and Christie virtually tied in December, now show him trailing her by 13 and 8 points, respectively.... And as Christie’s electability erodes, so will his vaunted support among GOP moneymen.

"So if Christie is no longer the candidate to beat in the 2016 Republican race, who is? Believe it or not, it’s Rand Paul.

"To understand the Kentucky senator’s hidden strength, it’s worth remembering this basic fact about the modern GOP: It almost never nominates first-time candidates. Since 1980, George W. Bush is the only first-timer to win a Republican nomination. And since Bush used the political network his father built, he enjoyed many of the benefits of someone who had run before. It’s the same with Paul. In both Iowa and New Hampshire, he begins with an unparalleled infrastructure left over from his father Ron Paul’s 2008 and 2012 campaigns."

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Friday, January 24, 2014

NH House votes to legalize marijuana

New Hampshire pot vote could nudge Vermont to loosen rules on marijuana | Fox News:

January 20, 2014 - "The New Hampshire House of Representatives made history last week when it became the first state Legislature to vote in favor of a bill to legalize the sale and possession of recreational marijuana.

"'Polls show 60 percent of voters in the state support (the bill), and we won't rest until that includes a majority of their state legislators,' Marijuana Policy Project legislative analyst Matt Simon said in a statement last week.

"If the bill survives committee and a final vote is signed off by the governor, New Hampshire would join the pot-friendly New England town of Portland, Maine, which voted to legalize it on Election Day 2013 in a special referendum, and a host of other states and municipalities looking to ax the prohibition on cannabis.

"'The legalization of marijuana is moving fast in parts of the United States, and it looks as though the domino effect could quickly move to other states such as Vermont,' said former Rhode Island U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy, chairman of Project Smart Approaches to Marijuana, a group 'dedicated to a health-first approach to marijuana policy'."

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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Volokh Conspiracy blog moves to Washington Post

Volokh Conspiracy moves to Washington Post | United Liberty | Free Market - Individual Liberty - Limited Government - Matthew DesOrmeaux:

January 22, 2014 - "The libertarian moment indeed. It was just announced Tuesday that the hugely popular legal blog, Volokh Conspiracy, has been picked up by the Washington Post. The Bezos-owned paper will now host Eugene Volokh’s legendary blog on its website, which is sure to boost both its exposure and prestige, while the authors retain full control of their content. For those unfamiliar with the 12-year old blog, its authors are mostly law professors with a libertarian bent, who cover everything from Supreme Court decisions to NFL policies, all with a dry but fascinating flourish.

"This move immediately follows the departure of Ezra Klein and two others from his hugely popular, but primarily liberal, WonkBlog at the Washington Post. And less than two weeks before, Radley Balko, the civil libertarian firebrand was picked up by the Post as well. This has led to some jests about a 'vast libertarian conspiracy” brewing at the Post. Though certainly no conspiracy, Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon and new owner of the Washington Post, has been rumored to have libertarian sympathies"

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Yolo County, CA, Libertarians unveil scholarship program

Logue joins Libertarians to launch scholarships for county students - Woodland Record:

January 22, 2014 - "The Libertarian Party of Yolo County is pleased to announce that assemblyman Dan Logue will speak at their upcoming reception on Friday, January 24, at 7 pm at the Spring Garden Restaurant, 610 Cottonwood Plaza, Woodland, where they will kick off their Liberty Scholarship program. The scholarship program gives three $1,000 scholarships to Yolo County students for college....

"The Liberty Scholarship is a $1,000 dollar scholarship offered by the Libertarian Party of Yolo County to encourage Yolo County students in their pursuit of higher education. These funds may be used by students to help pay the costs of tuition, books or other school expenses in one of Yolo County's institutions of higher learning or a nearby Sacramento college. It is offered to one graduating high school student, one community
college student and one UC Davis student each year.

"The Libertarian Party of Yolo County is dedicated to promoting the peaceful change of our County and local government that fulfills the principles of individual freedom, free-market economics, and limited government. More information about the Libertarian Party of Yolo County can be found at

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Rand Paul 2016 raised $1 million in last quarter of 2013

Rand Paul 2016 has $1.7M in bank - Alexander Burns -

January 15, 2014 - "Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul raised over a million dollars for his Senate campaign fund in the last quarter of 2013, leaving him with $1.7 million in a federal account that could be transferred over for a presidential run.

A senior Paul adviser told POLITICO that Paul took in just 'over a million' for Rand Paul 2016 – a campaign account named for the year Paul will have to defend his Senate seat, but that carries a double meaning thanks to the senator’s apparent White House ambitions.

"In addition to the $1.7 million Paul has in the 2016 account, his political action committee, RAND PAC, also has $500,000 on hand.

"The former Bowling Green ophthalmologist appears to be picking up the pace in his fundraising: POLITICO reported last year that Paul took in about $1 million across his political groups, including both the campaign and the PAC, in the third quarter of [2012]. The million-dollar haul this time comes just from the campaign."

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Monday, January 20, 2014

Libertarian Party response to Obama's NSA speech

Libertarian Party response to President Barack Obama's announced plan for minor reforms of NSA - The Daily Iberian: Reader's Forum: "

January 18, 2014 - Statement from Geoffrey J. Neale, chair, Libertarian National Committee, in response to President Barack Obama's announced plan for minor reforms of NSA mass surveillance: 

"Barack Obama today delivered a speech that promised next to nothing. He promised that 'greater safeguards for civil liberties' will be enacted, and that steps will be taken to rein in the worst of the NSA surveillance abuses.

"But government cannot be reined in. Once it has power, it seeks more. Once it has information, it keeps it — and often tells us that it didn't keep it (such as the records of gun purchases run through the NICS system) even though it really did — and then it wants more....

"There is already a list of 'safeguards,' and they are mentioned specifically in the Constitution. If the supreme law of the land is 'just a piece of paper,' what other 'safeguards' will keep millions of bureaucrats from breaking the law further?

"The only way to limit government intrusion into our lives is to eliminate the functions that have little to do with defending individual rights within our borders. If government were restricted only to acting on its one legitimate function — protecting individual rights — 95 percent of government operations would cease to exist. And Edward Snowden would have had little incentive to break the news on the government's rampant criminality.

"Edward Snowden should be granted a full pardon and complete immunity from prosecution. The government's ire should instead be turned toward prosecuting the millions of bureaucrats who have violated both their oaths of office, statute law, and even the Constitution itself."

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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Jeffrey Tucker raises $100K to launch Launches Indiegogo Campaign to Huge Online Support -- SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 14, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/:

January 14, 2014 - "Just 3 weeks ago, Jeffrey A. Tucker – author, executive, crypto-anarchist and often called the Frederic Bastiat of his time – announced the launch of his Indiegogo campaign to fund the construction of the liberty-inspired social media publishing platform he calls a "city in the cloud." He professes that freedom is the solution to the world's ailments, and he is putting his money where his head and heart have been for decades.

"The liberty community has embraced the project with open arms. Despite speculation of just what exactly the project is, over $100,000 of its $120k goal has been raised through the crowd funding website $30,000 worth of those pre-subscriptions purchased were with the free market crypto-currency bitcoin of which Tucker is a big fan.

"The project is epic, and comprehensive – a one stop shop for all things liberty. It promises to accommodate conservative-libertarians, left bleeding heart libertarians, crypto-anarchists, anarcho-capitalists, and even extends a hand across the border to welcome the average government supporter.

"Features of the online community are beautifully presented and robust. Each member is promised their own turnkey publishing platform with a custom [YourName] url for videos, podcasts and article uploads. All member created content is available to the entire internet; no pay wall or gatekeepers preventing people from using their voices to reach the world exist.

"Also included are online courses discussing the most important books taught by selected experts, a comprehensive calendar to stay up to date with liberty themed events across the globe, a massive library of free e-books, seminars on applying liberty to your own life, a constant news stream, and full access to experts such as Freedomain Radio's Stephan Molyneux, Austro-libertarian lawyer Stephen Kinsella, economist Bob Murphy and many others."

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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Democrats and Republicans fail the fiscal test

Major parties are failing the fiscal test – The Post and Courier - Thomas Ravenel:

December 30, 2013 - "In March of 2006, then-U.S. Sen. Barack Obama offered an impassioned rebuke of runaway Republican deficit spending during a debate over the nation's debt ceiling.

"'The fact we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure,' Obama said at the time. 'It is a sign that the U.S. government can't pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our government's reckless fiscal policies.

"'Increasing America's debt weakens us domestically and internationally,' Obama continued. 'Leadership means that "the buck stops here." Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren'....

"Of course, Obama changed his tune upon being elected - dramatically accelerating the very fiscal policies he previously chastised as 'reckless.' Now the 'reckless' ones - according to both Obama and GOP strategist Karl Rove - are the pro-free market, pro-liberty fiscal conservatives advocating the spending restraint Obama once claimed to stand for (and which the Republican Party still claims to stand for)....

"Prior to the most recent stopgap debt deal, Democrats and Republicans in Washington had approved $11.2 trillion in new deficit spending dating back to 2002.... $3.4 trillion was approved by George W. Bush and 'Republican' Congresses, $2.4 trillion was approved by Bush and Democratic Congresses, $3 trillion was approved by Obama and Democratic Congresses and $2.4 trillion was approved by Obama and a divided Congress..... In other words neither party has protected America’s current and future generations of taxpayers."

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Friday, January 17, 2014

Libertarian professor declares for state rep in Delaware's 22nd District

Libertarian candidate challenges Republican Representative in 22nd District | WDDE 91.1 FM | Delaware's NPR News station:

January 17, 2014 - "Delaware State University Professor of History and Political Science Steve Newton announced his candidacy for Representative of the 22nd District earlier this month. The seat, which covers the Pike Creek Valley, is currently held by Republican Joseph Miro.

"Newton, who is running as a Libertarian, says he chose to run to bring a stronger legislative focus to public service. He says the legislature currently spends on corporate welfare while cutting civil services.

"Delaware does not currently have any elected Libertarian legislators, but Newton says that he’s more comfortable running under that banner than as a Democrat .

"'I have railed against the insurance commissioner. I have disagreed severely with Governor Markell on a lot of his education policies,' said Newton. 'I said, to be perfectly honest, can I legitimately align myself with a party that I criticize so heavily?'"

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Thursday, January 16, 2014

Poll shows Libertarian would win Costa Rican runoff, if he's on the ballot

Libertarian candidate Otto Guevara could become Costa Rica’s next president -The Tico Times - Corey Kane:

January 16, 2014 - "A second round of voting in April in Costa Rica’s presidential race could turn the dynamics upside-down, as current third-place candidate Otto Guevara would be favored.

"This is according to the latest poll released by the daily La Nación, the first time a public poll has examined scenarios if no candidate succeeds in getting more than 40 percent of the vote in the first round.

The poll ran three scenarios between the top polling candidates – the ruling National Liberation Party (PLN) nominee Johnny Araya, the progressive Broad Front Party candidate José María Villalta, and the Libertarian Movement Party’s Guevara.

"Guevara likely would defeat both Villalta and Araya – if Guevara makes it to the second round – while Araya would lose to Villalta, La Nación’s poll predicted.

"'I am profoundly grateful for this massive and growing support from Costa Ricans,” Guevara said in a statement. “Our message is honest and transparent and the people have understood it.”"

"Guevara has benefited in recent months from receiving support from former and current members of the formerly dominant right-of-center Social Christian Unity Party (PUSC)."

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Independents grow, Democrats and Republicans fall in U.S.

Independents grow, Democrats and Republicans fall - West Palm Beach Libertarian | - Karl Dickey:

January 9, 2014 -: "According to a new Gallup Poll out yesterday, January 8, 2014, the number of Americans identifying as independent has increased to 42% of the population while those identifying themselves as ... Democrat has decreased 13.8% since 2008 to ... 31%. Republicans have fared worse with only 25% of the population - the lowest on record according to Gallup. The poll was conducted over the course of 2013 and the result of over 18,000 interviews....

"This is a trend that has been continuing and will have a serious affect on future elections. Florida will elect a new governor this November and with a decrease of support by voters for Rick Scott or Charlie Crist, it could be a huge opportunity for lesser known Adrian Wyllie. Scott has been polarizing for Floridians and Crist has shown himself to be a man without conviction, so Floridians are seeking an alternative and Wyllie may just be that man."

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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Chicago gun sale ban ruled unconstitutional

Chicago gun ban ruled unconstitutional - Chicago Tribune - Dahleen Glanton and Jason Meisner:

January 7, 2014 - "A federal judge on Monday stripped away a key element of Chicago's gun ordinance, ruling that it is unconstitutional to prohibit licensed gun stores from operating in the city.

"U.S. District Judge Edmond Chang found that the city failed to convince him that banning the sale of guns by licensed dealers was necessary to reduce gun violence.

"The ruling also would make it legal for individuals to transfer ownership of a firearm as a gift or through a private sale as long as the recipient was at least 18 and had a firearm owner's identification card.

"Chicago, the last city to allow residents to have handguns in their homes, once had one of the strongest handgun crackdowns in the country, making it a primary target of the National Rifle Association.

"Overturning the ban on retail gun stores and private gun sales was the last major hurdle gun rights groups faced in their hard-fought battle to dismantle Chicago's tough firearm prohibitions.

"The latest court ruling in the long legal fight came one day after Illinois, the last state to approve a concealed carry law, began accepting applications from residents who want to carry concealed firearms in public."

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Monday, January 13, 2014

46,000 Alaskans want marijuana initiative on 2014 ballot

Backers of vote on legal marijuana in Alaska turn in signatures | State News | - Michelle Theriault Boots, Anchorage Daily News:

January 8, 2014 - "Backers of a ballot initiative that could make Alaska the third state to legalize marijuana for recreational use turned in some 46,000 signatures to the state election officials Wednesday -- putting the question one step closer to the Aug. 19 ballot.

"The Alaska measure is modeled on the 2012 Colorado initiative that paved the way for a recreational-pot industry that threw open its doors there on Jan. 1, when the law went into effect....

"The proposed initiative is backed by a coalition that calls itself the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana....

"So far, the campaign has mostly been funded by the Marijuana Policy Project, a Washington D.C.-based nonprofit that is the largest marijuana policy reform group in the country."

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Sunday, January 12, 2014

The tide is rising for America’s libertarians

The tide is rising for America’s libertarians - - Edward Luce, Financial Times:

January 12, 2014 - "Robert Nozick, the late US libertarian, smoked pot while he was writing Anarchy, State and Utopia. He would applaud the growth of libertarianism among today’s young Americans. Whether it is their enthusiasm for legalised marijuana and gay marriage ... or their scepticism of government, US millennials no longer follow President Barack Obama’s cue.... If there is a new spirit in America’s rising climate of anti-politics, it is libertarian....

"Republicans such as Rick Santorum, the former presidential hopeful, who once likened gay sex to 'man on dog', elicit pure derision. Even moderate Republicans, such as Chris Christie, ... are considered irrelevant. Whether Mr Christie was telling the truth last week, when he denied knowledge of his staff’s role in orchestrating a punitive local traffic jam, is beside the point. Mr Christie’s Sopranos brand of New Jersey politics is not tailored to the Apple generation....

"The opposite is true of Rand Paul, the Kentucky senator, whose chances of taking the 2016 prize rose with Mr Christie’s dented fortunes last week.... Paul eschews the more outlandish fringes of libertarian thought. Rather than promising an isolationist US withdrawal from the world, he touts a more moderate 'non-interventionism'. Instead of pledging to end fiat money, he promises to audit the US Federal Reserve."

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Saturday, January 11, 2014

What’s next for the marijuana lobby?

What’s Next for the Marijuana Lobby? -- Fusion. - Ted Hesson:

November 27, 2013 - "This isn’t an experiment anymore: legal pot is one of the fastest growing markets in the country. One investment group estimates that more than $1.43 billion in legal pot will be sold in 2013, and $2.34 billion in the coming year.

"So what’s next for the marijuana lobby?

"Create space for the market to do its thing -- that’s according to Aaron Smith, executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. He spoke to The Atlantic this week:

"'The goal is simple,' he said, 'It’s really to alleviate the voices of cannabis business-people and then push federal laws so these businesses are treated just like any other businesses in the country.'

"There’s a pretty strong impetus for investors to remove the roadblocks that keep pot profits underground, so the strategy makes sense: give businesspeople a taste of the potential revenue marijuana could generate, then watch as influential allies flock to your team.

"And there appear to be some legitimate opportunities right around the corner."

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Friday, January 10, 2014

Overstock 1st major online retailer to take Bitcoin

Bitcoin wins the heart of libertarian CEO | City A.M. - Guy Bentley:

January 10, 2014 - "Encouraged by positive Senate hearings in November and enthusiastic Bitcoin processors, online retailer has decided to take the plunge and accept the cryptocurrency. In the first 90 minutes of Bitcoin sales, the site received around 150 orders....

"The libertarian chief executive of, Patrick Byrne, said in a press release:
This is historic. Digital currency will be an important part of the future and Overstock is excited to be the first major online shopping retailer to accept it.

As one who believes in limited government, this attracts me because it is a form of money that no government mandarin can will it into existence.
"While the use of Bitcoin can lower Overstock's transaction costs, there is more than just business behind Byrne's decision to accept the digital currency. Speaking to Wired magazine he said 'It helps us fight the machine'.”

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Thursday, January 9, 2014

Insane Clown Posse, fans, and ACLU sue the FBI

Insane Clown Posse take the FBI head on - West Palm Beach Libertarian | - Karl Dickey:

January 9, 2014 - "Yesterday, January 8, 2014, two members of the music group Insane Clown Posse and four of their fans, known as Juggalos, filed a lawsuit against the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) for claiming they are part of organized crime. The group claims the FBI and the DOJ have overstepped their bounds....

"In 2011 the FBI labeled the group and their fans as members of a gang if they had the'Juggalos' logo tattooed on their skin and fans have reportedly been involved in repeated altercations with police simply for exercising their right of free expression and association.... Individual Juggalos have reported suffering improper investigations, detentions and other denials of their personal rights at the hands of government officials.

"The group and the four fans are represented by the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan.... 'The Juggalos are fighting for the basic American right to freely express who they are, to gather and share their appreciation of music, and to discuss issues that are important to them without fear of being unfairly targeted and harassed by police,' said Michael J. Steinberg, ACLU of Michigan legal director. 'Branding hundreds of thousands of music fans as gang members based on the acts of a few individuals defies logic and violates our most cherished of constitutional rights.'"

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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Rand-oriented economics professor to primary House Leader Cantor

Eric Cantor’s Challenger from the Right | National Review Online - Betsy Woodruff:

January 6, 2014: "An economics professor from Henrico, Va., Dave Brat, will announce his entry into the race for Eric Cantor’s House seat on January 9.... 'I want to be Eric Cantor’s term limit,' he tells National Review Online....

"He ... intends to target Cantor for his support of the Ryan–Murray budget deal, as well as his stances on immigration reform. He’ll also go after the majority leader on the Affordable Care Act. 'He hasn’t moved the ball down the field at all,' Brat says.

"'He had two CRs at the end, one in favor of the shutdown and one opposed to the shutdown at the same time,' Brat continues. 'And that’s fairly symbolic of unprincipled leadership. I mean, that’s not a leadership position, where you’re on Side A and Side B at the same time and you’ve got your finger up in the air, checking which way the wind is blowing.'

"Brat’s background should make him especially appealing to conservative organizations. He chairs the department of economics and business at Randolph-Macon College and heads its BB&T Moral Foundations of Capitalism program. The funding for the program came from John Allison, the former CEO of BB&T (a financial-services company) who now heads the Cato Institute. The two share an affinity for Ayn Rand:...

"Brat can expect backing from much of the Virginia grassroots, especially the libertarian and tea-party activists who have long been frustrated with the state party’s leaders.... Brat received a warm welcome at the last Richmond Tea Party meeting."

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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

LP gets preliminary injunction against ballot access bill in Ohio

Ruling opens path for Libertarian challenger to Kasich | The Columbus Dispatch - Joe Vardon:

January 7, 2014 - "A federal judge has granted a preliminary injunction against a Republican-backed bill that would have made it harder for minor-party candidates to make the ballot, meaning Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Charlie Earl is more likely to face GOP Gov. John Kasich and a Democratic challenger in November.

"U.S. District Court Judge Michael H. Watson in Columbus ruled in favor of the Libertarian Party and Earl, who along with two others filed suit in November to block Senate Bill 193, dubbed by critics as the John Kasich Re-election Protection Act. The bill, which Kasich signed hours after it was passed by GOP lawmakers, would have blocked minor parties from holding a primary election this year, changed the rules for gathering signatures, and significantly increased the number of signatures required for minor parties to be recognized in 2014 – thus making it more difficult for Earl to qualify."

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Monday, January 6, 2014

Rand Paul planning class action suit over NSA spying

Rand Paul wants ‘light’ prison term for Snowden — RT USA:

January 6, 2014 - "United States Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) says he plans to sue the US government over the spy programs exposed by Edward Snowden, but in the meantime he isn’t willing just yet to endorse the idea of giving clemency to the former contractor.

"After National Security Agency documents detailing a previously underreported surveillance apparatus were leaked earlier this year, Sen. Paul said he’d begin recruiting Americans to participate in a class action lawsuit challenging the government’s uncloaked spy programs. Last week he indicated that he’s just about ready to file suit, but now is going on the record to say that the man responsible for those disclosures shouldn’t be offered a free pass....

"Snowden, the former NSA contractor, first began leaking documents last June.... He has since been accused of espionage by the US Department of Justice and stands to face decades in prison if convicted. First, however, he would have to return to the US to stand trial....

"In the meantime, though, Sen. Paul says he will be going to court to reign in the NSA’s operations.

"'I've asked internet providers and phone companies to join me in a class-action lawsuit to STOP Barack Obama's NSA from snooping on the American people,' Paul announced on his website last week.

"According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, over 250,000 people signed up to participate in Paul’s class-action suit by Saturday afternoon.

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Sunday, January 5, 2014

'Seasteads' offer the vision of floating cities for the future

Super-yacht not big enough? 'Seasteads' offer libertarians the vision of floating cities for the future - Architecture - Arts & Entertainment - The Independent - Paul Peachey:

December 26, 2013 - "Seasteading has emerged as a political movement - with nods to climate change and land shortages - to create new water-borne city states. Over 85 pages, a Dutch engineering and urban development company has outlined the feasibility of a floating "village" for 225 permanent residents and 50 hotel guests - a blueprint that the pioneering seasteaders hope will become hundreds of floating petri dishes of social and political experiments.

"The design consultants envisage a series of interlocking 'hollow box' square and pentagonal platforms, allowing each city to grow organically – or be dismantled and towed away in the event of political dispute or interference. Individual seasteaders would decide on how they would rule or be ruled....

"The vision is funded by a US non-profit organisation, the Seasteading Institute, established by two darlings of the libertarian movement including the billionaire founder of PayPal, Peter Thiel.

"The institute’s stated ambition for the seasteads is to 'guarantee political freedom and thus enable experimentation with alternative social systems'."

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Saturday, January 4, 2014

2013 a 'banner year' for libertarian conservatism

2013 was a banner year for libertarian conservatism | The Daily Caller - Jack Hunter:

December 31, 2013 - "In 2003, conservative Republicans vocally championed war and opposed civil liberties. In 2013, conservative Republicans vocally opposed war and championed civil liberties. In 2003, conservative Republicans led efforts to expand entitlements, grow the Department of Education, and nearly doubled the national debt. In 2013, conservative Republicans feared big government so much they shut it down.

"These are pretty significant shifts. So what happened?

"Obviously, the futility of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars had an impact on all Americans, including conservatives. Similarly, protecting constitutional rights seems more important a decade removed from the fear that gripped most of us after 9/11."

"Conservatives’ changing attitude toward government growth is more complicated, but becomes less so when you realize it is connected to changing attitudes on foreign policy and civil liberties."

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Friday, January 3, 2014

Krauthammer: Rising libertarianism top story of 2013 (after Obamacare)

Krauthammer's Take: Other than Obamacare, Biggest 2013 Story is Rising Libertarianism | National Review Online:

December 31, 2013 - "When asked what the biggest story of 2013 was, besides Obamacare, Charles Krauthammer said it is how American social attitudes are becoming more libertarian.

“The swiftness with which attitudes have changed on gay marriage is simply astonishing,” Krauthammer said. Beyond marriage, Krauthammer was also surprised by the advances of the marijuana legalization movement.

The only social issue bucking the libertarian trend is abortion, “in part because of the Gosnell trial, the fact that people are becoming aware that late term abortions are so near to infanticide,” Krauthammer said. “With everything else heading left, with this issue the movement has stopped and has reversed, especially among young people.”"
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Thursday, January 2, 2014

Two running for Libertarian nomination for Kansas Governor

Libertarians have two candidates for Kansas governor — but no primary - - Dave Helling, Kansas City Star:

January 2, 2014 - "The first election contest of the 2014 Kansas governor’s race ... won’t involve Gov. Sam Brownback, a Republican, or his likely Democratic opponent, Paul Davis.

"Instead, two Libertarians — Keen Umbehr and Tresa McAlhaney — will face off April 26 in Wichita. There, at a state convention, roughly 150 registered Libertarians will pick a nominee for governor.

"If Umbehr and McAlhaney were Republicans or Democrats, the contested nomination would be decided by secret ballot, in August, in a primary. But because Libertarians are not classified as a major party under Kansas law, they are prohibited from picking their candidate by election.

"At the same time, Brownback and Davis — who are likely to run unopposed for their nominations — will be on the August ballot, in an election paid for by taxpayers."

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Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014 and the prospects for peace and liberty

Where Are Libertarians Going? by Justin Raimondo -- - Justin Raimondo:

"Since 1998, has been in the forefront of the battle for peace and the restoration of the Constitution: I have personally written thousands of columns commenting on this or that aspect of the struggle, and my co-writers have contributed many tens of thousands of words to that same effort. And so I’m wondering: have we had an effect on the national discourse?

"I think the answer to that question is indubitably yes, although it’s hard to measure such things because so many other factors, entirely independent of us, have worked in tandem with our ongoing campaign: Ron Paul’s campaigns for the presidency, public disillusionment with the Iraq and Afghan wars, the rise of a generation less addicted to the "legacy" media, the ongoing disappointment of many progressives with the administration of Barack Obama, and last but certainly not least the Snowden revelations....

"Looking back, we can see the three phases of growth our movement has gone through: 1) the challenge – roughly congruent with Ron’s first campaign for the GOP presidential nod, 2) the follow-up – which coincided with the second Paul campaign, doubling and consolidating our gains, and 3) the culmination – which we’re now in the midst of, and which will (hopefully!) manifest itself in an all-out assault on the citadels of power."

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