The Real Activist Divides

In the online world, there has been much discussion of a “schism” between the activists. The original perception was that the divide was between activists favoring civil disobedience and noncooperation vs in-the-system political activists. In real life, the so-called schism was barely visible. Most people in the liberty movement are friendly and helpful toward one another, and there is no firm dividing line in activist approaches. Many choose differing levels of those two categories of activism and also plenty of other things one can do for liberty such as outreach, education, media creation, internet work, software programming, and more. Sure, there are a few people who are intolerant of certain activist approaches, but that will always be the case with a spectrum of interest. The politicos who are generally intolerant toward those doing civil disobedience and noncooperation are known for their very public complaining about “poisoning the well”.

I finally understand what they mean.

These political activists frequently chastise (as do the bureaucrats and politicians) civdis/noncoops for not “working within the system”. Today I had a conversation on facebook that was quite enlightening. I’d like to share that here. Keep in mind as you read that Seth and I get along fine in the real world, but here we are clearly at loggerheads. He will appear in bold and I will add commentary between the block quotes:

Ian: Apparently working in the system means doing everything the government people demand of you. If they put up a hoop and you don’t jump through it, you’re poisoning the well!

Seth Cohn: Ian, this is quite disingenuous. You decided to hold a ‘drinking game’ at the meeting. You posted openly about it, and then get upset when they stop you from doing it in the first place. Stop being petulantly obtuse that somehow you ‘tried to get involved in the system’, it’s just not true.

Ian: Seth – we handed out fliers to all the councilors and media in advance alerting them that they could repeal the ordinance and citing the ordinances. We WERE working in the system. You just don’t like the method we used to get people excited about going to a BORING city council meeting.

FACT: At the start of that meeting, there were 15 people in the audience section of the council chamber. Eight liberty activists and seven others, at least two of which were city employees I recognized. Put another way, after years of mostly never attending city council meetings, the city council drinking game brought out more liberty lovers than anything I can recall from the past. It’s likely that the police crackdown on people with brown bottles will bring even more people to the next meeting, but only time will tell. This approach has clearly gotten people involved in-the-system, but the complaining political activists are still not happy. Why? Read on.

Seth Cohn: Ian, one of the very first things I learned here in NH politics, at the Don Gorman school of politics (and remember, YOU chose to work in the system, so you have to play by the rules of the system, or else you aren’t really working in the s…ystem, no matter what you want to pretend), is that decorum is what makes the entire thing work. If you don’t show the respect for the system, it grinds to a halt. If you don’t show respect for your opposition, despite that they are wrong on this issue, because they might be allies on the next issue, it grinds to a halt. If you don’t show proper decorum, dressing appropriately, using correct titles, etc, it grinds to a halt. Guess what: it ground to a halt, because you refused to respect the system you claimed to want to work within.

Make up your freak(stater)ing mind: if you are going to try working within the system, do it, or don’t do it, but don’t claim to be doing it when you refuse to respect it.

See, some politician told Seth how it is, so that must be how it’s done! Even if you understand that government is nothing but men and women using violence and threats to feed off of peaceful people, or the violent monopoly, you should pipe down, put on a suit, and RESPECT those criminals. Wouldn’t want such *important* people to think poorly of you, now would you?

Clearly, a major divide is between those who pander to the system (unless they aren’t pandering and actually like it, in which case, they are probably power-seekers) and those who laugh at the system. It’s those who take the government people and their “system” seriously vs those who don’t.

Ian: You’re right. I don’t respect their system. Their system is institutionalized violence. So now it’s not “use the system”, it’s “use and RESPECT the system”? FUCK THAT.

I’m a quaker. I don’t use “titles”. They are men and women and their shit stinks too. I’ll respect them as individuals who have the potential to do the right thing and change, but never their precious system.

Seth Cohn: Then despite all of your protests to the contrary, NO, you are not ‘working within the system’ and I will continue to call you a liar if you continue to claim you are. Rule #1 of working in the system is accepting the inherent rules of the system, like decorum. If you insist on playing basketball when everyone else is playing baseball, you can and will be thrown off the playing field when you dribble. And complaining that you were playing too is nonsense.

Ian: Seth, I’m not playing by your rules (or Don’s, rather) for the system. It’s working within the system when you test and exceed its limits.

You can call me whatever makes you feel good!

People get respect from me by default just for being fellow human beings and more respect they earn. They will lose my respect for aggressing against or supporting aggression against others. I have some respect for a number of bureaucrats on a personal level, those I have gotten to know. However, I cannot respect a system (which is just a set of ideas and their adherents) that doesn’t respect peaceful humans. Perhaps someday the political activists putting up some front of “decor” will see that the laughter is a powerful tool for dismantling the idea of “the state”. If the government people aren’t taken seriously, it is a major hit to their legitimacy – something they grasp dearly to maintain as they only rule by threats, force, and brainwashing. Naturally, they want to obscure that coercion as much as possible, else people start to catch on and get fed up with it all.

Seth Cohn: Since you insist on redefining things, it’s not possible to have a meaningful discussion.
The rules aren’t mine, or Don’s, they are what make up the system itself. If you want to pretend otherwise, it’s your neck at risk. They have guns. …As you are so fond of pointing out.

Ian: I’d be a failure without risk.

Another divide here. Risk-takers vs safety-seekers. I don’t blame Seth or anyone else for being afraid. Fear is something I think we all deal with. They ARE scary. They can take your home and put you in a cage. Jail isn’t a great place to be, but disobedience and noncooperation are extra powerful BECAUSE they are risky. Once you accept the idea of being caged, there’s little they can do to you in your mind. Once others come together who feel the same way, who are willing to risk, amazing things become possible. Witness the mass arrests and buzz surrounding the Keene movement. The political establishment in Keene is flailing desperately: Hate in the newspaper comments, embarrassing arrests, loads of court trials coming up, and more new movers arriving all the time!

The critics in the liberty movement want to believe the vitriolic (and conveniently anonymous) comments on the Keene Sentinel stories are some indicator of what “the community” thinks of liberty activists in Keene. Sorry, there’s just no meaningful evidence to support their assertions. Seems to me that Keene is like most other places in that lots of people do whatever they can to avoid the government and it’s awful processes. Want proof? As I said, the city council meeting was barren of attendees excluding some city bureaucrats and their family members. Regular people are working or enjoying their time off rather than torture themselves by attending one of the government people’s horribly dull meetings. People go along to get along, pay the gang, and do their best to ignore the government people. Many wish they were left alone, but the government people just keep coming back for more taxes and fines and regulations. Eventually, the person or someone they love is attacked by the government parasites and the victims of the sociopaths are more likely to find and even seek out liberty activists. Eventually, they’ll be even more likely to find us as court outreach expands in Keene.

Again, more activists makes all kinds of projects possible. So, if you’ve read this far, when are you moving to Keene? If you are already here, come out of the closet and get involved. If you are a supporter of the violent monopoly, seek help or maybe it’s time to consider moving somewhere where the violent monopoly you love so much actually has a future. NH’s monopoly days are numbered.

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93 Comments

  1. From what you say, having no government would be a positive move.

    With no police, who is going to take care of drunk drivers, accidents, burglaries, home invasions, and murder. Will you be funding this?

    A house catches fire, do you have the funding for fire apparatus?

    An elderly woman has a heart attack, will you be funding the ambulance?

    The city needs plowing of the last 8 inch snowstorm, will you be funding the plows?

    Where is all this funding coming from.

    Apparently your groupies don't have the money, or they would have all flooded in all on the same day.

    Instigating the police is not going to help your cause.

    You obviously didn't check on the Keene Police. They are very professional and know what you lot's up to.

    Get REAL jobs and leave.

    Ian, Sam admitted he DOES pay taxes to the government, kick him out.

  2. Ian, once I came to the conclusion that government was a completely illegitimate institution it seemed self-evident that it can only be fought by being disobeyed.

    I would be surprised if Seth was an anarcho-capitalist. I know there are still some of them left who don't believe the state should even exist and yet believe in working within the system, but I doubt he is one of them.

    I would be interested in knowing if once the state gets abolished the "work within the system" crowd will elect themselves to office and repeal all of the thousands of laws before they stop paying taxes and obeying or if they will finally just say "fuck it" and live like free individuals like everybody else.

  3. Quote from Seth: "I would be interested in knowing if once the state gets abolished the “work within the system” crowd will elect themselves to office and repeal all of the thousands of laws before they stop paying taxes and obeying or if they will finally just say “fuck it” and live like free individuals like everybody else."

    If this process were to be carried out, wouldn't that be a NEW GOVERNMENT?

    The State won't be abolished, and you lot are fighting a losing battle.

    Only success I've seen is you lot of fools got onto youtube. Congratulations…

    I like the "this isn't a debate, but a question" line then you go onto debate.

    Ian, I'd like to meet you, so we can "question" one another.

  4. ["From what you say, having no government would be a positive move."]

    Very perceptive. Good citizen!

    ["With no police, who is going to take care of drunk drivers, accidents, burglaries, home invasions, and murder. Will you be funding this?"]

    We already do fund all of these things you listed. We are forced to pay for them.

    Not being forced to pay for these services doesn't mean they won't exist, it just means people can decide for themselves whether they truly need the service, and they can decide who they want to provide it!

  5. Dennis,

    Yours are very common questions. Since the government has been responsible for these services for as long as anyone can remember, it's easy to assume that government must be the only way these can be provided. It's much like the Russians, who once asked "Who will build cars and homes, if not the government?"

    If you're genuinely interested in learning more, then linked below is an excellent & fairly short book which explains, in detail, exactly how all functions would be provided without a government. People will still be able to get all the services they need or want … but they'll be more affordable, better quality, and with more choices than what we get now under the government monopoly. Furthermore, these services will be provided ethically, instead of paid for at the point of a gun as with today's tax regimes. If you're open-minded enough to check it out, you'll find the book's ideas to be very profound, and have a much better understanding of what the activists are trying to achieve.

    The Market For Liberty
    http://freekeene.com/2008/02/07/the-market-for-li

  6. This America, not Russia. And from what you refer to, is under the communist ruling.

    Is that what you lot are looking forward to?

    What if someone can't afford to pay for the services, such as people on limited income, the elderly won't have income with your scheme.

    Should you let them just die? You're a lot of college drop outs and have to make yourselves known, because you can't get real jobs.

    A reminder… You lot were not INVITED to NH, you just came in like a lot of bugs.

    You liked the NH slogan, and only came here to run it down.

    Your freakish behavior about the 8 year old was less than amusing. You only did it so you could post it on the web.

    None of your lot instigating the police gave names or got full face, with no sunglasses . Meaning, you're a shady lot.

  7. @Dennis…For one, there's a little thing called charity that does a decent job of taking care of those who cannot afford services. In the absence of government theft and coercion, charity will actually expand. You see, the Lockean "jungle" is largely a myth or at least an exaggerated version of reality used to emphasize the negative aspects of human nature in order to justify Statist coercion.

    The truth of the matter is that humans in general are much more empathetic than Statists ever given us credit for. We don't need guns pointed at us in order to find ways to effectively take care of those who cannot take care of themselves.

  8. Good morning… nothing like waking up on a Sunday to discover folks talking about you…

    Rather than a lot of small replies, I'll wait a bit, and then consolidate my answers…

    So anyone else want to pipe up and speculate about me, or my views?

  9. Well Mr Bernard and Miller, yes I will use your real names and not your personal choice or alias. I must state the Keene Sentinel's headline story today sums up your sad state of affairs with Free Keene.

    You followers are all over the board man. You first head to Concord and attempt to change the laws, wasn't easy enough and through past videos here (bail $) apeacekeeper states, "that won't work'. Then you decide to assemble for peaceful activism in the square, and when "the servants" arrive to enforce ordiances or laws, (whatever is in question). Your peaceful leadership turns to yelling and screaming. The BS bullhorns are brought out and nobody listens to a jackass with a bullhorn. You move to the Ashtoilet Park for 4:20 gatherings and I suspect abandon that concept because nobody cares that you are out there (not enough limelight) And return to the square for some more arrests. Then your latest carnival of shows, "The drinking game and free flea market… you must enjoy the accomodations at the county jail huh. How's that new video visitation process… I personally think no face-to-face visits is great. Or that court was closed on Friday and you had to stay for free over the weekend… But let's be honest, your followers have no leadership and thats a bad recipe. Do you honestly think the public thought the lemonaide girl wasn't with Free Keene? Come on, there has never been a lemonaide stand there with a small child running it but happened to be one on your free Keene flea market… nice, pimping the kids for a cause. Hey the numbers as a whole are dwindling my man, the servants are arresting you for everything they can. "Great job by the way KPD". Don't take the servant comments personally, as a person who rides around in a yellow crap RV is really a transient and not a taxpayer, therefore has no right to say you work for them. Why? because they do not pay taxes, do not fund any services and basically increase the cost of living in Keene due to their personal choices. Yeah freedom on the backs of the statists who fund the services for which they are abusing. So for my dollar, (and there is alot of them) keep arresting this group until they can't stand it anymore. Eventually they will need to grow up, try and find a job (good luck) that will overlook their personal and criminal records, and try to get along with life.

    I suggest someone step forth and become the leader so the various off spring can have some direction, otherwise your numbers are going to continue to dwindle. But we the people of Keene do understand why you hide behind the Freeman and Dodson names and the fact that nobody is the leader, because then someone would have to take responsibility for this carnival.

    Like I said, the Sentinel has hit the nail on the head. "Backfire"

    Paul Byrd

  10. How many of you lot have been arrested, (or as you like to call it "kidnapped") for the brainwashed?

    I hear 10p7.5, you talk alot, yet really don't say anything.

  11. I love how Seth claims that your and Sam's peaceful protest at the City Council is improper as it is not working within the system.

    Last I knew the system was defined by constitutions and those very constitutions say you have the right to protest and speak your displeasure at what the government is doing.

    Your speech/protest was unpopular with most in the mainstream. The "system" is supposed to protect unpopular speech and unpopular protests………. not arrest the participants because they refuse to surrender constitutional rights.

    The "system" is designed to allow for dissent.

    And "backfire" is the name of the article? I wonder what the article will read when the cases are tossed out of court?

  12. Dennis, you seem to have a good grip of what the difference between arrest and kidnapping is. Can you factually explain it to me. I have probably been all wrong about the meaning of kidnapping that it is an act of coersively taking a person in to once custody against the will of said person. How is that different from arrest?

  13. I think the related story this morning says it all:
    http://sentinelsource.com/articles/2010/08/08/new

    Hear that sound? It's the gears of change seizing up due to a lack of decorum during Ian's attempt at 'in the system' activism.

    I could argue about how Ian's confusing respect for the process with respect for individuals you disagree with, and how decorum means you can loathe the other side, but still respect the process…

    I could argue how Don's lessons are about being effective, about understanding the social and unspoken rules of political action, as well as the tactics and methods.

    I could argue that Ian is free do whatever he wishes, no matter how ineffective and pointless it is, but I choose to be effective, if possible, by learning the rules of the game and how to win at it.

    I could clarify that Ian took my 'gun' comment completely wrong: He's the one putting himself in danger by annoying men who tend to pull out guns when annoyed, while I choose to maintain politeness and decorum with them not thru fear but through effectiveness – more flies with honey, ya know.

    And finally, I could focus on how Ian refuses to pay attention to the feedback he's getting from Keene residents, fellow activists (in and out of Keene), and all manner of other folks beyond his small circle of keeniac supporters: they don't count in his opinion… If you don't listen to feedback, how can you adjust to be more effective?

    But really, I find it just so much much easier to point to this as validation of my description of what happens when you try to 'work within the system' without respecting it, without showing proper decorum, without playing by the rules of it.

    quote:

    A drinking game at a Keene City Council meeting designed to open up dialog regarding the city’s open-alcohol-container ordinance may have set it back instead.

    City Councilor Cynthia C. Georgina said Saturday she had been considering writing a letter to the City Council questioning section 6-29 of the city’s code of ordinances, which prohibits open containers.

    Following Thursday’s meeting however, she will not bother.

    “I just wanted to send it in and, if nothing else, make sure it was what people still wanted,” Georgina said. “Now I wouldn’t do it on a bet.”

    endquote

    In other words: FAIL. CUR-CLUNK…rattle grind halt… Thus ends the lesson.

  14. I still haven't heard from Ian and Sam when we can get together , on cam if needed, to try to make their point. Sam was hilarious on KBK. At least you lot have a sense of humour.

  15. Nice job, Ian. It sounds like the Puritans and Separtists all over again. I'm sure 400 years ago, nobody thought that people would ever be free from the clutches of the church, even after coming to America from England for religious freedom. People, including my ancestors, were punished and fined for not attending church services and other "sacrilegious" behavior.

    If we have to live in a system that is not of our own choosing, then we are not free. We are trapped.

    Just as aggressing towards others is immoral due to the sanctity of their lives and their personal dignity, it is immoral to submit to aggression (violence, rudeness, or control) as that is to deny the sanctity of your own life and dignity. Using titles that reflect a system that you don't want to be a part of is a form of submission in that you are acquiescing their power over you.

  16. You don't seriously think using Big words is impressive………………..college drop outs, and stealing money (donating, as you lot call it)? 107.5 is the funniest radio I've heard. And I have a shortwave…

  17. Well Ian, when shall we meet? 3rd time I've had to ask.

  18. Seth, it's rather interesting that, all of a sudden, she was intending to change that law. Didn't say anything, until after this event.

    Yeah. And I have a bridge for sale, too.

    It's almost like she (*gasp*) didn't actually have any intent like that, at all, and made the whole thing up, afterward, just like a child ("I was going to give you a candy bar, but now I won't!").

    If you actually fall for lies that blatant, well, you're even more gullible than I thought.

  19. Maineshark, even if she's lying, she's putting herself on record now that she was thinking about it, and now is firmly opposed, as a direct result of the actions.

    Doesn't really matter if she's revising history or not, the incident is what is now the stopping point, where things broke down.

  20. Quick replies to the remaining comments:

    1) to the other Seth, I'm don't consider myself an anarchocapitalist, no.

    2) Mackler, outbursts happen all over… it's not the norm, it's the exception.

  21. This just seems like a really silly argument to me.

    I agree with Seth that Ian was NOT working within the system. The drinking game was, in my eyes, another form of civil disobedience and non-cooperation. But who cares really? Why does it matter what we call it, if it gets results?

    I'm not in Keene, yet, but I can guess (based on no facts whatsoever), that for every stodgy curmudgeon who is upset with the Freestaters about this incident, there are a few younger, more open-minded people who found it amusing and became interested in the movement.

    Activism, so long as its not violent, will always be good for the movement, so this bickering about who's activism is best just seems so pointless and distracting. Both sides should just quit bitching about what the other side is doing, and get out, away from the computer, and do more of whatever kind of activism they like to do.

  22. Dennis, thanks for your interest in a conversation. I hope you can understand I was up until 3am writing this, so I just saw your comments. Email me at Ian at FreeKeene.com and we can set up a meeting. Or, just come to Social Sundays at Ashuelot Park at 5pm today.

  23. The drinking game was, in my eyes, another form of civil disobedience and non-cooperation. But who cares really? Why does it matter what we call it, if it gets results?

    It wasn't civil disobedience because Ian and Sam didn't actually break the law!

    They were peacefully protesting a government policy they disagreed with… and the government crushed them for doing it.

  24. Seth, use some logic, m'kay?

    If she was already "firmly opposed," then the net change resulting from the "drinking game" was… zero.

    Saying, "oh, I was considering it" is most likely an opportunistic lie. Being a politician, if she decides to change her mind, she'll just come up with some weasel-worded excuse for it. You can't polarize those who change their position so often they make figure skaters dizzy.

  25. Ian's never ending post-hoc self-serving justification for any poorly thought out action is inexhaustible. But everyone already knows that:

    1) They use guns on peaceful people, therefore I am justified to use fraud to make my public drinking point. And remember, it's CD, just like dumping blood in Pentagon offices or taking hammers to nuclear missiles.
    2) The thugs haven't bothered the 420 celebration recently, therefore we won!
    3) I have a big microphone, but don't lead anyone, because you see, I'm a voluntarist, and because I say so, and that's reality.
    4) I have a handy-dandy Quaker card today, and it is for this reason I am justified in ignoring the customs of how strangers address each other. The enigma thugs are just Mary and Joe. I am right, because they use force.
    5) I let "You control the airwaves", but if you get off message too far, prepare for me or my soul brothers to cut you off, mock you, or ignore you. I can do this because I own it.

    Ian is about action. Any action. Any and all impulsive action will do, the justification and rationality of the action can be readily patched up after the fact. At least he's honest about one thing: he doesn't care about "their" politics. This is why he is so bad at politics.

    I don't wish for it, but Ian and Sam have set back progress more than they can comprehend. Not to worry though, they can easily explain it all away. i do get a laugh though, at Ian's fantasy of, "More activist will come to Keene and that will force them to give us what we want". Sorry, although you are anticipating a war of attrition, you cannot win it. The politics you reject are necessary to even begin to get what you desire.

    Steve Jobs wrote the book on reality distortion fields. Ian is but a poor demagogic apprentice.

  26. Joe, you, as usual, completely miss the point, and focus on the wrong end of the issue. It doesn't matter what she really thinks, it's what is blamed for the stoppage that is the issue here: the "reason" the Open Container ordinance will not be changed is FreeKeeners, not the city council. It's anti-liberty activism, not government bureaucrats, who did that damage to the cause.

  27. 1. I don't see any fraud in what they did. They did not say they were drinking alcohol. They were not drinking alcohol. Choosing to drink it out of brown bottles does not make it fraud.

    2. Officers not assaulting peaceful people, where they once were, sounds like a win to me.

    3. Ian obviously has a following, but he doesn't order them around with his microphone, and he has never demonstrated anything other than voluntarism. He seems to be principled to a fault.

    4. You don't have to be a Quaker to reject authority. I don't see anything unjust about calling the police chief, or a judge Tom, if that happens to be his name.

    5. I wish Ian would cut more people off his show, as I get annoyed listening to some idiot callers blather on. Ian unfortunately thinks he has to give these people a fair chance to get their opinions out, but frequently their opinions are nonsense. Even then he lets them hog the show for several minutes, and is normally very courteous to them as well.

    I really don't see how Sam and Ian set the movement back any.

  28. Clivet,

    Its reasonable to assume that younger open minded people would be drawn to FK simply because of rebeliousness inherant in the age group..In reality, the few locals that latch onto the pathalogically attention hungary self dillusion of FK are boarderline personalities..Heika, their newest recruit has been on the precipice of a nervous break down for about 4 months..Many of her friends and family have been deeply saddened by her recent behavior and the FK cult members have moved in to fill the emotional vaccume as her world backs away from this very publc train wreck. many of the others are simply people who like to smoke Pot on a daily basis and dont happen to be working at 4:20 or dont have to be at work in the morning and can drink at 11:( Hint:no one is working)

    There are no jobs to be had, aside from near minimum wage in the service industry every few weeks and there is a great deal of competition for those.

    Ian is masterful at over hyping the size and scope of the "movement". Wandering into "social Sundays" and realizing this is the "epicenter" of anything is very sad indeed. It looks like a small field trip from a local pedo-farm..Free keene has litteraly changed nothing in Keene except to annoy the local population and hijack the common. The laws are as strict as they have ever been and for every mover there is a sad soul returning from financial and political failure. Feel free to see for yourself..You should come out for a week or so, to see what I am saying is true. Please do not uproot, alienating loved ones like so many do, only to come here and acheive nothing along side the likes of Mr Bernard.

    If you are an adult who wants to move here and can support yourself. NH is a great place. If you are simply another member of Ians D&D club the world is a very real and cold place.

  29. No, Seth, I completely understand your point. Anything you disagree with (at the moment) is wrong, and responsible for anything bad that happens.

    No, it doesn't matter what she thinks. What matters is that she will blame "them," no matter what they do. So why should they do something different?

    Ian could go out and buy lunch for some homeless guy, and your political buddies would accuse him of doing something evil. If their opinion cannot be changed, and will be uniformly negative no matter what Ian does, why should Ian pay any attention to it?

  30. I think the solution for the civ-dis haters is to keep showing them love and compassion, no matter how angry they get.

  31. Heika, their newest recruit has been on the precipice of a nervous break down for about 4 months.

    Well, Mr./Mrs. anonymous poster, isn't that just always what people like you claim.

    Heika has come to understand that the government is a violent organization that strips people of freedom, she is getting active to do something about it, SHE MUST BE INSANE!

    My former employer said the same thing about me when they tried to fire me from my position of being a police officer. I vehemently opposed the drug war and violence of the state so clearly I MUST BE INSANE.

    You know who really is insane Mr./Mrs. anonymous poster? People like YOU who think using violence against peaceful people is an appropriate thing to do.

    Grow some balls or ovaries and use your real name when you make such direct accusations about an individual's sanity. After that, grow a heart and stop using violence against the peaceful.

  32. I especially like anonymous's claim that no one can be around at those times, if one is employed.

    Which misses the fact that the self-employed (business owners and the like) can often set their own hours. If for some reason I ever decided that I wanted to smoke pot, and also that I wanted to do it at 4:20, I can darn well let myself have that time off, since I'm my own boss.

    This particular anonymous poster isn't the only one to make that claim, but I always find it amusing that those who do, assume that being able to take time during the day relates to a lack of responsibility, rather than a greater degree of responsibility, such that one can manage one's time efficiently and, therefore, have time to spare.

  33. Yes,although self employment sometimes feels like unemployed, it is not really. I can come and go as I please, depending on what I am doing. So doing nothing is not the same as having nothing to do-I just aren't doing it NOW.

    As for Paul Byrd-could you please begin your posts with another name, maybe Paul B or something? Not picking on you at all, but there has been a Paul that has been posting here for some time, with a differant viewpoint,and it gets confusing until I get to the bottom, and see it is not him. Thanks. —bil

  34. @Seth Cohn,
    Nice try, but Ian will always will have the last word. A word, like Plato's Crito, only in reverse.

    I won't spam up the board anymore. Goodbye and thanks for the laughs. (And Sam, get some therapy.)

    bigScrotum, over and out.

  35. While I support those who want to try CD, since I believe in their freedom to do so, I have to admit that I don't always get it.

    I have a question for those who believe CD is the way to go. What do you think will happen eventually? In other words, what is your goal, or expectation of result, if you do not want to work within the system? I honestly don't understand it. I would like to, but I don't.

    Do you think that one day the whole system will just crumble down and the "moochers" will be left to fight amongst one another? While you and the rest of the righteous will be whisked away to live in Galt's Gulch, and the whole place will be powered by static electricity?

    That's why I believe in working within the system. Because when changes start to come, I believe the vast majority of them will need to come from within the system. Libertarians are running and getting elected more and more frequently.

    This whole institution was created by a bunch of men signing a piece of paper, as we are fond of saying. What makes you think it can't just end in a similar manner?

  36. Dennis, thanks for posting here, and asking these questions!

    Firstly, I want to say, that these questions address ideals, which is fine, but we can do a lot in this country to move towards more freedom, even without getting to the point where these become issues at all.

    With no police, who is going to take care of drunk drivers, accidents, burglaries, home invasions, and murder. Will you be funding this?

    We should have police, but instead of forcing everyone to fund one department, let people select the one which they believe will provide them with the best service — the way we let people select other services.

    Monopolies are always more abusive and inefficient, because there's no choice — choice is necessary for real accountability.

    A house catches fire, do you have the funding for fire apparatus?

    Fire services would probably be bundled with fire insurance, but I'm sure they could also be bought on a subscription basis independently. And, although I certainly don't think this would be a responsible way to go, I'm sure there would be options for those who have no subscriptions, but want to get fire service when they need it — just as there are private ambulance companies.

    An elderly woman has a heart attack, will you be funding the ambulance?

    Ambulances are already mostly private.

    The city needs plowing of the last 8 inch snowstorm, will you be funding the plows?

    Well, this goes to the stickiest issue of all, in my view, which is roads. There are lots of examples of non-government highways that have been very successful, and there are many places where rural roads are managed by neighbors, not governments. In Sweeden, for example 70% of all roads are part of PRAs (private road associations).

    Nevertheless, I think this is the most challenging issue to address — not because there's anything difficult about roads in a free society, but because we've developed our infrastructure based on government roads.

    It's certainly doable, but it wouldn't be anything close to one of the first issues I'd address. It'd be just about the last one, actually.

    If we can get to a free society, besides the roads, I'll be thrilled. If we can get to a free society besides police, ambulance, fire, and everything else you mention here, I'll also be thrilled.

    Where is all this funding coming from.

    People who want a service would fund it — the same way all other goods and services are funded in our society.

    Apparently your groupies don’t have the money, or they would have all flooded in all on the same day.

    Huh?

    Just so you know, I'm no Ian groupie. I disagree with him often.

    Respecting your neighbors rights, and not using aggressive violence against others, is simply the right way to live. Almost everyone manages to do it very well in their private lives — most people recognize that mugging, assault, etc, are wrong. It's only in our "government" interactions that people seem to forget these basic principles.

    Instigating the police is not going to help your cause.

    It depends on your definition of "instigate". I agree that yelling at cops, etc, is counterproductive, and I hope those individuals who continue to do it will choose a more positive route.

    If by "instigate" you simply mean breaking the law, then I certainly disagree. Immoral laws should neither be obeyed nor enforced.

    You obviously didn’t check on the Keene Police. They are very professional and know what you lot’s up to.

    They're certainly better than many departments around the country, that's for sure.

    Get REAL jobs and leave.

    I'm a professional engineer, and a NH native who grew up in Keene area. But thanks for that.

    I'm not in NH now, but plan to move back soon — probably not to Keene itself, but we'll see.

    Ian, Sam admitted he DOES pay taxes to the government, kick him out.

    Firstly, I think most pro-liberty folks pay taxes, just as they'd hand their wallet to a mugger. I wouldn't want my house stolen from me, or to be thrown in jail.

    Secondly, you seem to think Ian has some sort of super-authority or somesuch. He has no ability to "kick" anyone "out" of anything … except this site, I suppose, since he technically owns it … but unless you advocate violence against government, or perhaps spam repeatedly, I don't think you can get kicked off.

  37. … but unless you advocate violence against government, or perhaps spam repeatedly, I don’t think you can get kicked off.

    True.

    People regularly talk smack about people who blog here… we encourage it, because it gives us an opportunity to respond and hopefully convince critics that all we want is the violent monopoly to go away.

  38. The first "Paul" in this thread isn't me, by the way.

    I'm officially switching to the moniker, "trem" from now on, so as to avoid future confusion.

    What if someone can’t afford to pay for the services, such as people on limited income,

    I absolutely believe in helping those who need it — I personally give hundreds to charity per month. I don't say this to brag, but to show you this isn't empty rhetoric.

    What I won't do is pull a gun on my neighbor, and force him to fund causes I believe in. That is immoral behavior.

    the elderly won’t have income with your scheme.

    I think lots of businesses would offer pensions — and, if people didn't have 50% or more of their income taken throughout their lives, to taxes, medicare, social security, etc, they would be far more wealthy and able to retire far earlier.

    There would also be far more jobs.

    Should you let them just die?

    No of course not — but I should help them myself, with the fruit of my own labor, rather than stealing my neighbor's and using his.

    You’re a lot of college drop outs and have to make yourselves known, because you can’t get real jobs.

    Actually, I'll have (God willing) finished my masters in physics in six months.

  39. I am really new to this, in fact this is my first response to this blog.

    Of course, like many, I was brought here by the Free Talk Live radio program. I was naturally curious what the FreeKeene blog was about considering it was mentioned constantly. It began by listening on Saturday nights – that's when they play here (Tallahassee, Florida), but I eventually graduated to listening to the backed up download archives. Listening to a lot of the programs has given me a lot more insight into what the "deal" is here, a lot more insight than I had by listening to just a couple of programs. I called in once, but didn't really get to talk much.

    At any rate, my point is that as I learned more about Ian, Mark, FK, NH, FSP, and so on, I found that I didn't always agree with everything they did (not meaning to imply they all are on the same drum march, just vague "they" meaning anyone in a particular situation). I have seen the video of the park incident (with the "nipple painting") and while that isn't how I would have handled the situation, I don't fault them for how they do it.

    I have considered for quite some time something I have heard them discuss on the program, particularly in regards to the way our government and court system operates. I suppose I should say the method in which it operates today – that is to speak of the plea process. When someone is accused of a crime it is a fact that they are threatened with maximum sentences (which are not really viable in many cases) in order to extract an agreement for a lesser sentence. This is the "revolving door" of justice. You're in, you're guilty, and you're out to start the whole process over. In reality we're not exerting our rights to a trial when we often should (including myself). The modern day justice system would absolutely crumble if the plethora of cases which are resolved in pleas were to be challenged by the accused, this itself should be more than enough evidence that something is wrong with the picture (ie that the system itself cannot function in the fashion it is intended to, rather it has "become" another creature entirely as I understand – feel free to correct me if I am wrong about even a thing, I am not a legal expert!).

    My point being is that there is, what I perceive to be, completely understandable and reasonable logic behind civil disobedience. Just because a law is on paper does not justify it, therefore it is reasonable to resist. Of course with resistance there is going to be a consequence, but I think the consequence is the key. If the police or government are willing to cite/ticket/arrest people for what they claim are infractions, those who are accused have every right to protest and exert their rights via a trial. There comes a point which this is not viable (assuming it is concentrated geographically, a sparse resistance will do little, but that's where the gathering of like minds comes in). Once the situation is no longer viable the result should be change to realistically adapt to conditions (that is to say, excessive citation/fine/etc is unnecessary and unrealistic, not to mention unsustainable).

    My point being is that though I may not agree per se on every subject and action, I do see some logic can be derived by actions such as these. I consider myself to be more political even if I consider the system to be rotten at the core, but I think multiple routes should be explored if we are to find a result. I could go on and on– Sure, it is entirely possible a privatized police/fire/ems/etc system would be entirely functional if not better, but aren't there so many things in between (and that must be address WELL before we even CONSIDER that) that we CAN agree on and move forward with?

    Why are we fighting?

  40. Let's face it.

    The antics of the Free Keene crowd are about yelling "LOOK AT ME!", followed by a loud "KISS MY ASS!"

    You people are not respectful. You therefore earn no respect.

  41. If I had a drink everytime I heard Seth say that someone "missed the point" when they get the point but disagree with it, I'd probably be two sheets to the wind all day.

  42. to be respectful you have to harm other people? These bureaucrats and politicans are so respectful.

  43. Lets face it Dennis,

    The antics of the politico's crowd demanding that you "Do XYZ or we will have our thugs kidnap you and toss you in a cage."

    Or the politico antic of we will throw you in a cage for "tax evasion" if you refuse to hand over your hard earned cash, "if you resist or try to escape from the cage we put you in, we will kill you."

    Do people who kidnap and cage people who aren't hurting anyone else and also extort money from everyone deserve any respect? I don't think they do.

    I think violent politico "crowd" who are nothing more than "tax" thieves and kidnappers should kiss my shiny metal ass.

    You want people to respect your unnecessary and violent system. You want people work with "in" that unnecessary and violent system. You'll need to have your system, gain our respect.

    I also see you've chosen to side with the violent politicos, that's not very respectful to people who believe in the Non-Aggression Principle. You therefore earn no respect.

  44. Sorry to post anonymously "Main Shark"

    WOW I had no idea everyone smoking pot daily at 4:20 was a self starting euntrepreneur, you can just sense the "responsibility" radiating from the red eyed unwashed loittering crowd. I actually do run my own biz and any one who does and makes $$ knows that you work more not less, 420 smoke breaks don't really happen when your a serious person..Real quick, who is the biggest free keene employer in Keene? Who has jumped into the market place and staked the capital to compete? Which one of you has opened a restaraunte or a store or a factory? Every time I see one of you losers with the "capitalism" shirt in the Coke font you can tell the idiot spent his last ten dollars on it…FREEDOOOMMM, do you want fries with that?

    Bradley Bradley,

    my comments about Heika had nothing to do with her recent conversion to your inane brand of self importance. She was unstablizing well before she discovered "freedom" Conveniently the FK idiots were there to give it a name..

    Ive been reading your posts, it was hard to imagine a bigger primadonna in love with the sound of his own voice than Ian but here you are..Law man finds the light…give me a fucking break….its an attention whore sprint to the finnish with Bradley,Ian and Sam in a dead heat…

    Now did your parents hold you too much or not enough…its hard to tell…

    Well off to work….

  45. Why should bad laws be respected Denis?

    Why should a violent system be respected?

  46. Bradley Bradley,

    my comments about Heika had nothing to do with her recent conversion to your inane brand of self importance.

    I don't think you understand what people like us here are advocating. We don't think we're self important. We don't think anyone is. We think that all human beings are equal and that none should ever initiate violence against another. Do you disagree with that?

    The people who seem to really have self importance issues are the ones who cast votes in favor of controlling the lives of the peaceful.

    She was unstablizing well before she discovered “freedom” Conveniently the FK idiots were there to give it a name..

    Of course she was…… as was/is anyone who surrenders the idea that violence is an appropriate way to solve problems.

    Ive been reading your posts, it was hard to imagine a bigger primadonna in love with the sound of his own voice than Ian but here you are..Law man finds the light…give me a fucking break….its an attention whore sprint to the finnish with Bradley,Ian and Sam in a dead heat…

    Hey, thanks for reading. Hopefully you too can understand that using violence against peaceful people is an immoral act. Until then, I'll accept your insults knowing that you're at least reading things that I read which helped me understand the violent person I used to be.

    Now did your parents hold you too much or not enough…its hard to tell…

    I think my parents instilled a sense of morality in me that allows me to determine what right and wrong is in this world… even if my determining what is wrong and saying so would open me to personal attacks by people like you.

    If a police officer quit his job in the 60s out of protest for the current immoral policies which authorized the use of violence against black people for doing peaceful things, how would you have reacted? Judging by your attacking me here I think it's safe to say you would have done the same thing back then.

    Don't you find it ironic that you are attacking me, Ian, Heika, and Sam for positions we take when in reality the position we're taking is so simple? All we are advocating is that initiation of violence never be allowed to solve peaceful problems.

    Yet, here you are, posting anonymously and personally attacking the people who advocate this.

  47. Why should bad laws be respected Denis?

    Why should a violent system be respected?

    I think Denis thinks it should be respected because he would like to tame the corrupt system, put a leash on it, and try to reel it in.

  48. If I couldn't have more free time, not less, why wouldn't I just work for someone else?

    If you're self-employed, and working harder, with less freedom of action than when you worked for wages, you probably shouldn't be self-employed. Intentionally working harder for less… is just insane.

Care to comment?