After almost four years of railing against the wasteful spending going on here in the city of Keene, you might be under the assumption that this place is a lost cause and subsequently choose to settle elsewhere. Don’t. Keene is a great place with a lot of good people and a lot of potential. The truth is this sort of nonsense is going on across the country and in a lot of places it is much worse. The key difference here is the strong liberty community that has chosen to keep tabs on the powers that be and hold them accountable for their misguided decisions. We’ve cleared our eyes of the veil of apathy to see the truth for what it is.
To the wise old city bureaucrats and school officials: this may be your legacy, but it’s my inheritance. I WILL NOT stand by and watch while you squander it. You may get your way this year, but I’m not going to make it easy for you.
As some of you may well be aware, the Keene School District plans to cut 36.7 full-time positions, close an elementary school, and has projected a loss in enrollment of around 80 students. And yet, as you probably already expected, the budget will still be going up.
The school district has presented us with a proposed operating budget of $64.98 million, an increase of $181,394 from the previous year. Should that article fail, the default budget of $65.66 million will kick in. So, lose/lose. But here’s the real kicker: Due to less incoming revenue in the form of state tuition and previous-year surplus, the actual impact on the Keene taxpayer will be an additional $1.7 million increase. This will amount to a 5.31 percent increase on the school portion of your property tax.
These yearly increases in both school and city spending are unacceptable and ultimately unsustainable. If the school district were a private business it would have gone belly-up years ago due to its mismanagement of funds. But unlike the private sector, the public school system doesn’t need to sell you a good product to stay in business. They’ll get your money regardless of the quality and affordability of service they provide us. Or else they’ll take your house.
In an attempt to reign in this out-of-control spending, I have introduced three warrant articles that will help school board members and administrators with their future budget preparation. They include a budget cap of .5 percent, a reduction of $500 per student per year until the student tuition matches the state average, and the formation of a committee to study the feasibility of withdrawal from SAU 29. I’ve also included a fourth article to cease participation in the one-size-fits-all common core program. Sadly, all four warrants will undoubtedly be amended in such a way as to remove their original intent at the deliberative session this Saturday.
If there is one thing the school and its supporters excel at, it is removing any alternative options from the ballot.
FSP Founder Jason Sorens Speaks to Nearly 100 This Morning
Nearly one hundred liberty-loving early movers were in attendance for the press conference this morning held by the Free State Project at the Radisson in Manchester. FSP founder Jason Sorens spoke on the creation of the FSP and why the first 5,000 participants chose New Hampshire as the destination. Jason said,
“The free state project is working because it gives people hope”
That’s definitely true for me. When I moved here as an early mover for the FSP in 2006 I was pretty angry about the government. I felt very lonely in Florida, with little more than a handful of libertarians in the area. Now there are more liberty-minded people living at my intersection in Keene than there were in the entire city where I’m from.
With over 1,600 having moved across NH from all around the globe as early movers, (the official FSP move begins today) and having a major impact, it’s clear that there is hope for liberty here in the Shire. I’m not angry anymore and haven’t been for many years. I expect other libertarians who feel isolated or cornered where they live will have a similar transition when they are surrounded by people who actually care about liberty and are willing to do something about it. It’s quite encouraging to be here. Here’s the full video of the press conference:
After Jason Sorens’ speech, FSP president Carla Gericke got up to address the crowd and journalists in the room, officially announcing that the FSP has reached its goal of 20,000 liberty-minded folks signing and promising to move to New Hampshire within five years of today, Feb 3rd, 2016. It’s now been dubbed “Porcupine Day”, and happens right after Groundhog Day. (The porcupine is the mascot of the FSP.) Once here, the FSP movers are to put forth the maximum practical effort to achieve liberty in our lifetime. Carla explained to the audience what it took to get the project to completion, including a sustained, expensive ad campaign on Facebook, for which much credit was given to Vince Perfetto who is well known in the NH liberty community as the producer of the excellent documentary, “101 Reasons Liberty Lives in New Hampshire“. (more…)
It’s been fifteen years in the making – the official move for the Free State Project will be kicking off this week! With fewer than 150 signers to go, the FSP has reached 99% of its goal of convincing 20,000 liberty-loving people to move to New Hampshire and get active.
Once 20,000 is reached this week, the early mover phase ends and the official move begins. The 20k will have a five year window to get here and get active.
I’ve you wanted to wait until the last minute to see if we’d make the goal, it’s now the last minute. It’s clear now at around 50 signers per day, the FSP is happening! Don’t miss out on helping make history. If you love liberty, you should join the Free State Project now and start planning your move!
If you thought the activism here was awesome and record-setting, you are right, but just wait until thousands more join us! The fun has just gotten started. As shown clearly in the excellent documentary, “101 Reasons Liberty Lives in New Hampshire“, we have a liberty community unlike anywhere else in the world.
Questions still remain. What will happen to the FSP organization after the 20k goal is reached? Will they continue to recruit signers past the goal? Will the organization dissolve after five years? Stay tuned here to Free Keene for the latest on the coming mass migration of liberty activists to the Shire.
For those who don’t know, the Free State Project is the most successful liberty migration in the world. The goal is to reach 20,000 people who have signed the FSP’s “Statement of Intent” saying they pledge to move to New Hampshire and get active to help achieve liberty in our lifetime. Once 20,000 is reached, they’ll have five years to make the move. However, over 1,600 couldn’t wait and moved early – sometime in the decade-plus since 2003. I moved in 2006 and it’s been one of my best decisions in my life.
Today, the FSP crossed 98% of its goal of 20,000 signatures, with less than 400 to go before the move is triggered!
Thanks to graphics design pro Johnson Rice of Infinite Twilight, our Bitcoin flyer that we’ve distributed thousands of at various places since 2014 has been updated for 2016 with new info and a new video QR. Now, instead of just one version for the Keene area, we have three total:
Please feel free to download the variant of your preference and send it off to your favorite printer. I recommend color, matte cardstock, but that’s just my preference. Do as you wish and help spread the word about Bitcoin in physical reality!