NHCLU Files Motion Challenging Border Patrol Checkpoints!

Border Patrol in Derby Line, VT

Border Patrol Agents Hassle Us Over Recording Video of their Checkpoint

Good news! The privacy-invading internal border patrol checkpoints that appeared in New Hampshire’s North Country this summer have been challenged in court by the NH Civil Liberties Union!

From their press release:

As stated in the ACLU-NH’s motion, during these border patrol checkpoints, the Woodstock Police Department (“WPD”) and the New Hampshire State Police separately worked in concert with United States Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) to circumvent the independent protections provided by the New Hampshire Constitution against dog-sniff searches in the absence of a warrant or reasonable suspicion. Specifically, federal CBP agents used dog-sniff searches in situations where New Hampshire law enforcement would have been barred from conducting similar searches. Resulting evidence from these federal searches was then turned over to state law enforcement for drug prosecutions. (more…)

Full Video of First-Ever Free State Blockchain Conference

Darryl W Perry addresses the crowd during the conference.

Darryl W Perry addresses the crowd during the conference.

This year’s first-ever Free State Blockchain Digital Assets Conference in Portsmouth, NH was a smashing success. If you missed it, check out Derrick J’s recap of the event here.

Video of the conference has now been posted, and while the quality could be better, it’s better to have it than not. Of special note is the presentation from Keene-area cryptocurrency business-owner Chris Rietmann (2:02:50) and Free Keene‘s Darryl W Perry on a panel discussion about the future of blockchain (4:47:00).

Looking forward to next year’s conference!

Concord Monitor Runs Another Story on Bitcoin

Area 23's Bitcoin Vending Machine

Area 23’s Bitcoin Vending Machine

Back in 2015, the Concord Monitor ran a front page feature on Keene’s Bitcoin Vending Machine (BVM). David Brooks, who writes their “Granite Geek” column has been following the world’s first cryptocurrency for a while, and also wrote a piece when Concord got its own BVM located at Area 23, a libertarian-owned bar.

Now, Area 23 and the Concord BVM are back in the Monitor, with a piece published Friday in the Granite Geek column about why very few people are actually spending bitcoin these days.

Brooks’ gets it right when pointing out that people are reticent to spend a thing with a tendency to go up in value. However, he brings up a supposed environmental objection to the power consumed by the world’s bitcoin miners, claiming mining consumes significant power. I’d ask, what about all the banking infrastructure? How much power do their countless buildings with their lights and computers consume globally? I’d be willing to bet it’s FAR more than bitcoin – to the point of being incalculable. Cryptocurrency decentralizes money and threatens that old structure.

If it gets too expensive to run miners, people will stop. Meanwhile, there’s no need to fear power will run out. Necessity is the mother of invention and energy is neither created or destroyed. The market will keep finding ways to make energy cleaner, cheaper, and more efficient. Cryptocurrencies’ rise may further such development.

Thanks to David Brooks for his story. People are talking about bitcoin!

All Cryptocurrencies Set Record $420 Billion Market Cap as NH Retailers Launch DASH Acceptance

Cryptocurrency's Total Global Value Over $420 Billion!

All Cryptocurrency’s Total Global Value Over $420 Billion!

What a ride! The total market cap of Bitcoin and all other cryptocurrencies combined passed $420 billion for the first time yesterday! For some perspective, keep in mind that the global market cap passed $100 billion for the first time in early June. It hit $200 billion five months later in early November, then about three weeks later hit $300 billion. It only took ten more days for the total market cap to pass $400 billion.

With some exceptions, overall, the rest of the cryptocurrency prices trend upward when Bitcoin Core (BTC) is going up. Bitcoin Core has been on a meteoric rise, with nearly a 2000% increase in its US dollar value in the last twelve months! Yesterday, BTC eclipsed over $16,000 according to BitcoinAverage.com. Two days prior to that, it was at $12,000.

When will these steady gains come to an end? Hard to say. Many fear a huge crash is coming, but then again cryptocurrency is uncharted territory. Just because there was a big crash in bitcoin in 2013 doesn’t mean anything for what’s happening now. The market was so small then by comparison to today. If you look at the market cap chart above, you can see that “big” crash at the end of 2013 – but it barely registers as a little speed bump, peaking then at around $13 billion, when compared to the monstrous $420 billion of value in all cryptos today.

Corner News' owner Roberta Mastrogiovanni poses with her store's brand new Bitcoin Vending Machine!

Corner News’ owner Roberta Mastrogiovanni poses with her store’s brand new Bitcoin Vending Machine!

Obviously, rule number one of investing is don’t invest what you can’t afford to lose. If you’ve got money in cryptocurrency and you’re spooked and want to cash out, go ahead, just don’t cash it all out.  Also, consider diversifying into other cryptocurrency besides BTC. That said, rule number one of bitcoin has always been to hold on for the ride. Don’t let the downs get to you. They will come at some point; the only question is how deep the price drop will be and for how long. It’s important to keep perspective – we’re still in the early days of this. Even though bitcoin is coming up on its ninth year of existence, it’s still young compared to all other forms of money that have been with us for centuries. This is new territory and anything can happen.

We’re all subject to our emotions and beliefs. I got spooked and sold some of the Shire Free Church‘s bitcoin for cash prior to the much-feared “Segwit2x” fork of Bitcoin that was supposed to happen in November, but never materialized. That bitcoin would now be worth three times as much USD had we held it. (more…)

VIDEO: Vermin Supreme’s Pony Protest Outside Hillary’s Book Signing in Concord

After filing a federal lawsuit against the city of Concord, NH for trying to oppress his free speech rights, the city agreed to a settlement and Vermin Supreme’s pony protest was a success!

He and supporters gathered outside a bookstore in downtown Concord, NH with signs and a real, live pony to protest the evil Hillary Clinton who was inside doing a book signing.

Here’s what happened.

Free State Blockchain Digital Assets Conference a Huge Success

Originally posted at FreeStateBitcoin.com:

This weekend, the Free State Bitcoin Shoppe went mobile for the first time. We attended a bitcoin conference happening in our hometown of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The occasion is the arrival of bitcoin powerhouse Bruce Fenton, his businesses, and his family, to move to NH as part of the ongoing freedom migration that’s been happening for almost 2 decades. The conference attracted some of the most exciting and important minds from across the country to talk about the latest in digital assets.

The Free State Bitcoin Shoppe had an enormous presence, being one of the event’s sponsors. A booth loaded with crypto-themed shirts and accessories, plus pocked-sized secure bitcoin vaults, and a towering bitcoin vending machine kept busy all day as items were flying off the shelves. We sold out of many items, and were delighted to see our last digital vault go to a customer who asked to pay in encrypted Zcash. We still haven’t heard of any other retail store in the world doing that. (more…)

Vermin Supreme Sues City of Concord over Free Speech Denial

Vermin Supreme for President

Vermin Supreme gets the ladies.

2020 is a long way off, but longtime presidential contender Vermin Supreme isn’t resting easy. His attorneys filed a civil suit against the City of Concord, NH and some of its bureaucrats on Friday in the federal district court over Concord’s denial of a permit for a pony protest.

According to the thirteen-page suit, Supreme had requested a permit from the city bureaucrats to protest outside Gibson’s Bookstore where Hillary Clinton will be holding a book signing event on Tuesday, December 5th. Supreme’s plan was to bring ponies to the public property near the bookstore in protest. From the suit:

Part of Mr. Supreme’s long standing campaign platform has centered on socialized distribution of equine companions which some have interpreted as commentary, satire, and political parody about a political system that rewards candidates who promise free benefits without discussing cost or practicality.

A bureaucrat with the Concord Health & Licensing Services Department, Eugene Blake, told Supreme’s agent that there were no general restrictions on having ponies outdoors at that location and that ordinarily he would grant the permit to have ponies at that location. However, Blake admitted the Concord police directed him not to grant a permit for the ponies on that day, and at that location, specifically because no one wanted to interfere with Clinton’s book signing.

While I’m generally opposed to asking permission to exercise one’s rights, Supreme doing so has managed to allow the city gang in Concord to back themselves right into a free speech violation. Whether that was Supreme’s intention or not, now they’ve been sued for violating the free speech provisions of the US Constitution and NH Constitution as well as the right to due process. The suit further alleges that not only was Supreme denied the permit but the bureaucrats did not provide any administrative process for appeal of the decision.

Supreme and his attorneys are requesting damages, attorneys’ fees, an injunction forcing the city to issue the permit, and a trial by jury. Stay tuned here to Free Keene for the latest.