David Brooks at the Monitor did a detailed writeup which included him visiting Area 23 to take photos and interview A23 owner Kirk McNeil. It’s a good piece, but whoever wrote the headline got it wrong. NH is not the leader in BVMs for the nation, but we do outperform all of the rest of New England combined.
Longtime Concord liberty activist Kirk McNeil is Area 23’s proprietor. Longtime readers of Free Keene may remember him for making headlines for legalizing nanobreweries in New Hampshire. Kirk said in an interview for Free Keene, “I’m happy to have a location where people can access and utilize alternative currencies and exchange methods.”
Entrepreneur and newer mover David Jurist purchased the Lamassu brand BVM, approached Kirk before anyone else and offered him the opportunity to host the unit at Area 23, given it was already a liberty-and-bitcoin friendly establishment. David told me, “it’s exciting that the capital city of New Hampshire finally has a Bitcoin Vending Machine”. I agree. It’s also timely as one of the state representatives on the “Commission to Study Cryptocurrency” has followed through on her promise to file a bill this year that will ensure bitcoin users do not need to register as “money transmitters”. (more…)
Wow, what a decade! For a full ten years we’ve covered liberty-oriented news, opinion, and activism here at New Hampshire’s Liberty Activism Destination – Free Keene. We’re celebrating nearly 5,000 posts and over 62,000 comments since December 27th of 2006.
Without a doubt, Free Keene is the site of record for much of the most noteworthy activism over the last ten years from across the Shire. Other libertarian blogs from across the state have tried to compete, and failed, sadly. I really take no pleasure in this. My initial vision for this site did not include statewide coverage. I’d hoped other blogs would crop up and report on their area’s activism, but we ended up expanding to do that after the ball was dropped everywhere else. (See Free Manch, Free Grafton, etc.)
Some bloggers, like the movers here, have come and gone. The haters have also come and gone over the last decade. Despite our bloggers being targeted for arrests, lawsuits, and physical attacks, Free Keene has not been stopped. To the contrary, while the haters scream out from their comments and blogs about how irrelevant we are, they refute their own assertion by their very attention to us.
The critics might say, “Well, it’s been a decade – why aren’t you free yet?” (more…)
Tuesday morning the saga of UBER Grandma came to a close at Portsmouth district court. Stephanie Franz’ trial was scheduled for seven tickets she’s received since October of 2015 for the horrible crime of driving people places without a government permission slip. Rather than thank her for providing the service of getting drunk people home alive (and stopping them from driving themselves home drunk), the “City of Portsmouth” gang decided to ticket her seven times for a total of $6,500! $500 for the first ticket, $1000 each for the rest.
The city’s argument for threatening the sweet grandmother and other UBER drivers with such ridiculous fines was the claim that more stringent background checks than what UBER provides are necessary to keep passengers safe. However, this argument is obvious garbage, as the city only regulates drivers who charge for their services. If a convicted murderer were to offer rides for free, the regulations wouldn’t apply. Portsmouth’s anti-ride-sharing regulations, passed in Summer of 2015, were created to protect the existing taxi oligopoly. That’s what regulations are really for – not to protect consumers as the government claims, but to protect the established businesses from innovative competition.
Despite the constant attacks by both the police and the cabbies, UBER Grandma was not deterred. She kept driving in civil disobedience to the city’s protectionist ordinances, knowing she had harmed no one, and in fact had helped many people get home safely. She’s a hero for continuing to stand up for her right to do business without asking for permission! (more…)
Major news from the bitcoin-in-real-life hotspot of the world, Keene, New Hampshire! Now, you can get your car repaired with bitcoin at the award-winning, ASE-certified Wilder Automotive at 384 Washington Stree in Keene. Winner of the Keene Sentinel “Reader’s Choice Award” for Best Local Mechanic of 2015, owner Steven Wilder learned he had multiple customers who were asking about bitcoin. As he looked into it further, he discovered that accepting bitcoin may also get him new business through the door, as the owner of Keene-based Linux computer internet retailer Think Penguin, has said he needs some car repair done and would prefer to give his business to a bitcoin-accepting mechanic.
As stated in the radio ads that Shire BTC has been running on the Peak 101.9, Bitcoin is an international currency, but feels hyper-local. We’ve seen multiple examples of local bitcoin-accepting businesses patronizing each other. Not only do business owners get to keep more from each sale than they do from credit card transactions, but that also means more money staying here in the Keene-area economy, rather than going to megacorporate credit card companies!
Pizza doesn’t get fresher than Little Zoe’s, now available for bitcoin!
Wilder Automotive accepting bitcoin is a major level up for Keene, which until now had several smaller-ticket brick-and-mortar businesses onboard the Keene Bitcoin Network, like Main Street hair salon Moda Suo, gift shop Route 101 Local Goods, and Vietnamese food truck Bon Vivant. The announcment may attract excited bitcoiners from around the region to get their cars and trucks repaired with BTC.
Another established, award-winning Keene business that is now accepting bitcoin at their point-of-sale is Little Zoe’s Take and Bake Pizza, located in the Center at Keene on Gilbo Ave. Originally established several years ago, the unique pizzeria makes each pizza fresh and then you take the pizza home and cook it in your oven! Their delicious pizza is available with a staggering amount of topping configurations and won NH Magazine’s “Best of NH” award for 2013. (more…)