Schoolhouse Shenanigans

mr smith

Mr Smith goes to Washington

Mention government corruption, wasteful spending, crony politics and most minds will undoubtedly go straight to the sleaze pit we know as Washington D.C.  Try to convince your neighbor that that same ooze may lie closer to home at the municipal level and you’ll likely run into some opposition.  After all, we’re talking about our neighbors.  Our co-workers.  These are local heroes who take time out of their busy lives to make ours better.

They are also human.  Just as corruptible and just as likely to misuse public funds as the parasites in DC.  Let me explain.

Last year the Keene School District unabashedly spent $24,000 of our money to advertise its very controversial Article 1 that dealt with the acquiring of a $13 million bond for school renovations and the subsequent closing of Jonathan Daniels Elementary.  They placed pro-article 1 ads in the Sentinel, the Shopper, on WKBK radio, and blanketed the city in campaign signs.  For those unaware, the act of using government property to influence the results of a vote is known as electioneering and is illegal in the state of NH (RSA 659:44-a). The school board justified this act by claiming a need to “educate” the folks on current affairs.  This is nothing new, really.   Governmental departments across the country are guilty of using public funds to perpetuate their own agenda. The problem is no one is calling them out on it.

When asked what he thought of this misuse of taxpayer money, KSD attorney, John Wrigley, had this to say: “I think the school board has an obligation to inform and to educate…  In 30 years I’ve been doing this I’ve seen the board over-extend itself more than once.  I sit there and I look at something and I say,  “Whoa I hope no one asks me about that.”  But those are specific details that sometimes I trip across.  I think on the whole, the board does it right, it has public hearings to inform and to educate.  …but, I think sometimes  they over-extend themselves.  But I think it’s all in good faith…we’re not talking about Richard Daley in Chicago and that sort of thing.”

So in other words, it’s ok to break the law as long as it’s for the kids and as long as it’s not Richard Daley level.  Had you or I attempted  this same stunt, we would be looking at fines and or imprisonment.  It’s true.  Badges and titles do grant special privileges to some.

Need another example of how KSD spends your money? (more…)

Correction: FSP Movers Are 26% of Net NH Migrants, Not 15%

Free State ProjectAccording to Free State Project founder Jason Sorens, the database available on the FSP website does not actually catalog when movers moved, despite using the term “mover” in the database. The date shown there for each mover is apparently their date of signing the FSP’s Statement of Intent. So despite us double-checking the numbers, this confusion resulted in an inaccurate article I posted earlier today. Here is a correction to that article.

In the original article here, I corrected (or so I thought) the incorrect (and subsequently withdrawn) article that was originally posted by the FSP that used bad numbers to determine that FSP movers numbered 36% of domestic migrants from Jul 2013 – Jul 2014. Using the numbers provided to me by Darryl W. Perry, we determined that, using a larger timeframe of Apr 2010 – Jul 2014, the actual percentage of all migrants (including international) was 15%. However, due to bad input data it turns out that the actual number is over 26%!

Here’s how I determined that FSP movers amount to 26% of the net migrants into NH from Apr 2010 – Jul 2014. First, I kept the same number of net migrants from the census data, which is 3,013. Then, using data from Archive.org from April 2010 and July 2014, I determined that according to the numbers presented on the front page of FreeStateProject.org on those dates, that 810 people moved to New Hampshire in that timeframe. 810/3013 = 26.88%!

That’s an impressive percentage, especially if you consider that the FSP’s official move has not yet been triggered. When that happens (at 20,000 FSP signers), thousands more liberty-oriented activist movers will be on-the-way.

Here’s the now-retracted article: (more…)

Gilford Schools Recording Audio on Buses Without Notice, aka “Wiretapping”

In a video captured by a student in Gilford, a school bus driver admits to a student that the camera on the bus is recording audio.  By definition, this is “wiretapping”, according to a ridiculous, draconian NH statute that most other states do not have.  In most places, you can record a conversation so long as one person knows it’s being recorded.  In New Hampshire, the supposed “live free or die” state, every party to the recording must be aware, and depending on your interpretation, consent.  What the school board in Gilford is doing is not legal, but it should be – for everyone.  The wiretapping statute only protects bad bureaucrats and business people from accountability and needs to be heavily gutted or repealed entirely.

Here’s the brief student video where they announce they are recording and then the driver admits the permanently mounted camera at the front of the bus has been recording audio.  Will the Gilford school superintendent be arrested?  Don’t hold your breath.  They save their “wiretapping” arrests for activists like Ademo Freeman of Cop Block.

Thanks to Josh Youssef for hosting the video.

Judge Burke Sentences James to Jail, Suspended

Heroic activist, blogger, entrepreneur, and Free State Project participant James Cleaveland was sentenced in Judge Burke’s courtroom in Keene, New Hampshire for the charges of “disorderly conduct” and “resisting arrest”. His charges stem from a June 30th incident in which James was video recording police. According to officer accounts, James was ordered to move back from an “active scene,” and he complied. After complying with the first officer’s request, a different officer demanded he move back further. He refused and was arrested.
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Keene Voters Enslave Their Neighbors

The Free Staters are upsetting local bureaucrats again. This time they tried to return freedom to the people by limiting the amount of money local politicians can demand from them. The politicians weren’t happy.

One of the school board members said, “We don’t need a very small minority of people in this community — that do not in any way represent the will of the people — telling us how to do our job.”

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VIDEO: State Rep Commits Cannabis Civil Disobedience in Front of Committee

At a recent, well-attended and lengthy hearing held by the criminal justice committee at the state house regarding studying cannabis legalization, a state representative from Rockingham, Kyle Tasker, put his freedom on the line.

During his testimony in front of the committee, and in front of a state police officer, Tasker pulled out a bag of cookies, a vaporizer, and what appeared to be a bottle of cannabis tincture, which he claimed came from his “personal stash”.

The cop behind him didn’t seem to know what to do. After all, he likely wouldn’t hesitate to arrest Tasker for possessing cannabis in the streets. However, arresting him in front of the committee would only prove the point of the cannabis freedom activists – that people are arrested all the time for cannabis – something about which the police frequently mislead the legislators. (more…)