Manchester, NH Bitcoin Meetup
It’s not a coincidence that New Hampshire has arguably the highest concentration of bitcoin and crypto-friendly people anywhere. For more than a decade there have been active migrations of libertarian, voluntarist, and liberty anarchists moving to New Hampshire. Many of these movers are activists who are into alternative currencies and the bitcoin community here has exploded as a result.
The oldest migration of libertarians to New Hampshire is the Free State Project, which as of September 2016 boasts nearly 2,000 participants already in New Hampshire, with 18,000 more pledged to move by the year 2021. There’s also the more decentralized Shire Society which has been encouraging liberty-loving people to declare their personal independence and move to “The Shire” since 2010.
These early movers are not only users of bitcoin, but are also some of the key developers and creators of the bitcoin world. Liberty migrants to New Hampshire created the iconic, most-installed-in-the-world Lamassu bitcoin vending machine in Manchester. Some are developing the evolutionary “Open Bazaar” and “LBRY” software. Decentralized ride-sharing app “Arcade City” has also sprung up just this year, and within a week of it being announced, signed up 1000 drivers worldwide. Arcade City founder and liberty migrant Christopher David said, “With its libertarian leanings and an influx of free staters, New Hampshire is perfectly positioned to become a major hub for bitcoin and blockchain startups. That’s a big reason why I moved here.”
Bitcoin Outreach Booth at the Cheshire Fair
Here are some more fun facts about the burgeoning bitcoin scene in the Shire: Manchester is home to the world’s longest-running weekly bitcoin meetup, plus regular meetups are being held in Keene and the Seacoast. According to Overstock.com, the highest concentration of their bitcoin orders comes from New Hampshire. Plus, you can actually use bitcoin in real life here, at mom-n-pop businesses like “Corner News”, “Local Burger”, and multiple food trucks in Keene, plus “Pizza 911”, “Dancing Lion Chocolate”, and more in Manchester. It turns out that Keene, the Southwestern NH city of 23,000 people, even outdoes San Francisco in amount of bitcoin-accepting business per capita! Take a look at CoinMap.org to see the dozens of New Hampshire businesses that are taking crypto!
New Hampshire also boasts New England’s only public Bitcoin Vending Machines (BVM), connecting people with bitcoin from as far away as New York and Boston. (more…)
LRN.FM – The Liberty Radio Network, airs the best liberty-oriented audio shows 24/7 online and via satellite. Our current satellite coverage includes North and Central America and Sub-Saharan Africa. The signal is “Free-to-Air”, which means anyone in the coverage area can receive our signal for no monthly cost, providing they have the dish and receiver, which are very affordable. We’ve been on the American satellite since 2010 and have had a signal in Africa since 2012.
LRN.FM – The Liberty Radio Network
Last year we did our first Satellite Fundraiser to gauge the level of support that our listeners have for the platform. While this year’s LRN.FM Satellite Fundraiser did not garner as much in USD as last year’s, we had nearly as many contributors, and that was without the benefit of having a campaign pitch video, like we did last year. (The FBI took the video files in the March raid on the LRN.FM studio in Keene.)
In 2015 we had 46 contributions on Indiegogo, amounting to $4,925. However, $2550 of that came from two individuals. Factoring out those two mega-contributors, the average contribution was about $54. This year we had 40 contributions on Indiegogo for a total of $1760, meaning the average contribution was down a bit to $44.
In addition to the $1760 given at Indiegogo, there were three bitcoin contributions this year, totaling 0.26568 BTC, which is worth about $154 at current exchange rates.
Something new I tried this year that I believe was a mistake was the “Headtalker” campaign that ate up two weeks of potential fundraising right in the beginning. (more…)
A few days ago, LRN.FM – The Liberty Radio Network kicked off its 2016 Satellite Fundraiser. This year we’re hoping to expand our international Free-to-Air satellite coverage to include Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. Our current satellite coverage includes North America, Central America, and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Help LRN.FM Expand Satellite Coverage to Europe!
Last year, our first-ever fundraiser raised enough to keep our African satellite on-the-air. This year, the Indiegogo-based fundraiser is going to be promoted via a “headtalker” – a website that allows you to sign up to join in a social media blast to promote something. Sign up here via your preferred social media and then on Independence Day, July 4th the headtalker will post to your social media about our fundraiser. We’ve set a goal of 200 people – can you be one of them?
Obviously you can go donate to the fundraiser right now, but even if you can’t afford to help, you can definitely add your social media reach to the headtalker – so please do!
For the fifth time, the Hundred Nights homeless shelter and resource center will be holding its annual Masquerade Ball fundraiser event and I’m excited to be able to sponsor it again on behalf of the Shire Free Church and Free Keene! The event is happening March 19th at the Best Western Ballroom from 7:30pm to Midnight and is always a good time. Contact Hundred Nights for tickets.
Funds raised will continue to support Hundred Nights’ important operations for the least fortunate in our community, which include the Cold Weather Shelter that opened for the season on November 26, 2015. For the hundred coldest nights of the year, the shelter provides clean beds in a warm and safe space to the homeless in our area who have no place else to go. Between November 26 and December 31, 2015 801 bed-nights of shelter were provided to 76 unique individuals.
The Ball’s Costume Contest Winners from 2014
The Open Doors Resource and Drop-In Center is open year-round from 9am to 4pm on weekdays to anyone in need of a cup of coffee, lunch, access to a phone, fax or computer, laundry facilities and some friendly conversation. In the afternoons there are often classes or presentations on a variety of topics from bicycle repair to anger management. During 2015 there were 533 unique visitors to the Resource Center who came in a total of 11,751 times. In addition dinner is served there on weekends and holidays. During 2015 over 4,000 meals were provided.
Hundred Nights has a positive impact on people’s lives, and I’m glad to have the church support its operations. You can donate to Hundred Nights via their website. If you want to help sponsor the 2016 Masquerade Ball, take a look at this document for details.
Free UBER‘s Christopher David is making headlines again for his latest announcement where he and several other drivers are offering free rides to people on New Year’s Eve in Portsmouth, NH. The drivers are accepting tips, and Portsmouth police chief Frank Warchol said in an interview with the Portsmouth Herald that accepting donations would still place them under government control and means they’d be fined if caught operating without government permission slips.
Christopher David of Free UBER – Graphic Courtesy Coin Telegraph
Chris’ announcement has really put the government gang in a ridiculous spot that shows their true nature. Prior to this, the controversy with UBER in Portsmouth has been that UBER’s background check requirements aren’t as stringent as Portsmouth’s ordinances demand. There’s been endless debate and discussion in city council meetings about who should be allowed to drive other consenting adults from place to place, with the town government agents acting concerned about “protecting” the passengers from potentially criminal drivers. However, no one in the Portsmouth government would care if a felon takes someone from point A to point B for free, but if they accept a dollar for their effort, then the regulations apply! What’s this scheme of theirs really about? Perhaps money, control, and protecting the old cab companies from competition?
The Portsmouth gang is threatening the charity drivers with fines of $500 to $1,000 if they are caught accepting money for rides. How police will catch them is another question entirely. With UBER, police could use the UBER app to monitor the locations of the UBER cars (whether they have, I don’t know). However, UBER is not involved at all with the New Year’s Eve charity, so police would have to run a sting operation by scheduling a ride, then pouncing on the driver when he or she accepts a tip from the undercover cop.
Frank Warchol, Chief of Portsmouth Police – Photo Courtesy SeacoastOnline
Chris says that his reading of the Portsmouth gang’s “ordinances” and the state gang’s “statutes” lead him to believe there are virtually no restrictions on limousines. The Portsmouth transportation ordinance defines limousine services as those which, “provide designated luxury or specialty vehicles by prior appointment for discrete functions or transportation to locations outside the City or the reverse”. Chris says the vehicles on New Years Eve will be specialty because they will have fun games in the passenger seats.
Will anything go down on New Year’s Eve between city cops and the charity drivers? Stay tuned here to Free Keene for the latest, and if you’re looking for a ride on New Year’s Eve in Portsmouth, sign up for yours here at Chris’ new project, Arcade City!
Also, for more about Christopher David, check out his interview conducted for bitcoin news publication Coin Telegraph.
Today, more than 600 households statewide (39 in the Keene area) were delivered full Thanksgiving meals including turkey, stuffing, gravy, eggs, cornbread mix, vegetables, pumpkin pie ingredients, and some cooking supplies as part of the “Shire Sharing” charity now in its fifth year. Shire Sharing is based in Manchester and headed by state representative Amanda Bouldin, a Free State Project early mover.
Keene Shire Sharing Volunteers Pre-Delivery, 2015
Amanda has managed to continually grow the yearly charity event, which she began in memory of her father who did something similar in Dallas when she was growing up. In an interview for Free Keene today, Amanda reported that fundraising for 2015 reached record levels, allowing more than 600 families to be fed. She was hoping to raise enough for 500 families. (Last year, Shire Sharing fed 350 families – a huge increase in just one year!) This year, at least $17,000 was raised by direct contributions and fundraiser events.
Though the first year of Shire Sharing was supposed to be a one-time event, Amanda says, “when the second year rolled around, everyone encouraged me to repeat the project. so we just keep going”. Despite the obviously high stress level involved in organizing such a massive operation, she’s committed to continue: “I know SS is very important to a lot of people — not just the recipients but the volunteers, too. I can’t quit!”
State Representative Amanda Bouldin, Founder of Shire Sharing
Yesterday, over 100 volunteers met at a warehouse in Manchester to help sort and bag the meals for delivery today, as Free Keene blogger Shire Dude reported here.
Last night, newer Keene-area mover Maria Korfiatis headed to Manchester to grab dozens of the bags for delivery, then this morning volunteers from this area gathered at the Church of the Invisible Hand’s “Society for Love and Peace” (SLAP) at 75 Leverett Street to head out on routes taking meals to Keene, Winchester, Ashuelot, Westmoreland, Swanzey, and Chesterfield.
It was Keene’s second year as part of the ever-growing Shire Sharing operation, and like last year, recipients were grateful for the special delivery! (more…)