Perhaps you’ve heard about New Hampshire’s top cities for real-life cryptocurrency use, Keene and Portsmouth. Both small cities are global hotspots where various food and services are available for purchase with Bitcoin (BTC) or other cryptos like DASH or Bitcoin Cash (BCH). It’s not random chance that this has happened. The reason these two cities are world capitols for local businesses accepting cryptocurrency at the cash register is because of the New Hampshire Freedom Migration that has been going on for many years.
This month Keene got another boost as an anonymous libertarian cryptocurrency user moved to town and a bunch of us came out to help him move a huge load of stuff into his new home in Keene, Given the love for anonymity of many crypto users, it’s undertstandable why he and some others in the group photo wanted to stay anonymous. The fact is people like this are moving to New Hampshire all the time. Where else will total strangers come help move you into your home?
Another anonymous cryptocurrency user moves to Keene, NH and is helped move-in via strangers who also use crypto.
As has been the tradition with these move-ins over more than a decade, the mover orders pizza and provides refreshments and local libertarian cryptocurrency users show up and help move the person in. This particular move in set a record for most stuff and longest time. Normally we’re done unloading a full size 26-foot moving truck in under an hour. This was six hours of moving stuff in from a series of eight packed-full moving pods that had to be towed in by truck. It was basically a whole day of moving, but this is the level of dedication to this migration these people have. It’s an honor to be part of such a movement.
The ongoing NH Freedom Migration has brought libertarians to New Hampshire in large numbers over the last fifteen years, and libertarians were the ones there at the beginning of Bitcoin. Gavin Andresen, the libertarian programmer chosen as successor by Bitcoin’s creator Satoshi Nakamoto, is a longtime supporter of my radio show, “Free Talk Live” and even spoke on the Bitcoin panel at 2015’s Keenevention.
People who care about liberty and cryptocurrency have been moving to New Hampshire and Keene has always been an activism hotspot. It’s no wonder that Keene is where the crypto-explosion in New Hampshire began. Portsmouth has risen as a major competitor to Keene as the top crypto city, but that’s just because longtime Keeniac Derrick J Freeman moved to Portsmouth, where he and his partner Steven Zeiler then launched the Free State Bitcoin Shoppe as an epic outreach project. Since then, they’ve recruited dozens of Portsmouth-area businesses into cryptocurrency acceptance and then created the Blockchain Institute for Technology and merchant crypto-acceptance provider Anypay.global.
Since then, both Keene and Portsmouth have become close competitors with Caracas, Venezuela for the highest amount of cryptocurrency-accepting businesses per-capita on the planet.
If you love cryptocurrency and liberty, New Hampshire should be your destination. Here are 101 reasons why. Look hard at Portsmouth and Keene.
Libertarians Protest Unfair Debates Outside St. Anselm College Yesterday
As of 2016’s election, the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire has gained full ballot access as a major party on par with the Democrats and Republicans. This is a big deal as it means we no longer have to jump through ridiculous ballot access hoops like petition gathering to get candidates on the ballot here. This has resulted in more Libertarian candidates appearing on the ballot here in Keene than Republican candidates. If the LPNH’s gubernatorial candidate, Jilletta Jarvis, can receive at least 4% of the vote this year, the party’s major ballot access status will continue for the next two years.
Sadly, the two largest mainstream media entities are working to help stop Jarvis from getting her ideas exposure in their debates they are hosting this week. WMUR-TV and the Union Leader are putting on the “Granite State Debates” and have set the rules to where only the Republican and Democrat candidates will qualify. To get in to their debate, a candidate must have received 12% in a recent poll and have raised over $25,000. Ironically, Darryl W Perry told me that both organizations have opined in favor of getting money out of politics, but when it’s a metric they can use to exclude the Libertarians, they apparently support money in politics.
NH-2 Congressional Libertarian Candidate Justin O’Donnell
The idea that such rules are in any way necessary is totally ridiculous. There are only three ballot qualified candidates for governor. It’s not like they’d need eleven podiums on the stage. They could have kept it fair and allowed in all ballot-qualified candidates, but they stacked the deck against the Libertarian campaigns. It’s pretty clear the exclusion was done on purpose, likely to appease the other two parties’ candidates, who as we saw recently may refuse to attend if the Libertarian is invited.
It wasn’t just the race for governor. Last night they held their debate for NH’s 2nd congressional district and excluded Libertarian Justin O’Donnell. In an interview with Free Keene, O’Donnell said this on the matter:
Radio and TV broadcasters are given free access to use public airwaves worth more than half a trillion dollars in exchange for a requirement that such broadcasters “serve the public interest” and provide a fair and unbalanced reporting of the news to inform the American people. By hosting a facade of a debate, and failing to include all the options who have qualified to be on the ballot, these broadcast organizations are negligent in their duty to inform the people.
Tomorrow, Libertarians will gather to protest starting at 5pm, two hours before the beginning of the gubernatorial debate at St Anselm College. They will be standing near the college’s New Hampshire Institute of Politics at 100 Saint Anslem Drive in Manchester. LP gubernatorial candidate Jilletta Jarvis will be present. Last night the turnout was approximately a dozen activists – hopefully we’ll have as much or more tomorrow night! The fake “debate” begins at 7pm Eastern. Here is a facebook event for the protest.
Aria DiMezzo files for Cheshire County Sheriff as a Libertarian
In what appears to be a historic first, the Libertarian Party of Western NH has nominated Aria DiMezzo as their candidate for Cheshire County Sheriff. DiMezzo says that her research shows that she may be the first-ever transgender candidate for Sheriff in United States history.
She’s a principled Libertarian who hosts a weekday afternoon talk show on LRN.FM named “The Call to Freedom“. She’s on the show daily from 4-7pm including the 5pm “Crypto Hour” which features her expertise on the subject of cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. (You can watch it via the LRN.FM Twitch channel or listen at LRN.FM.)
The last-minute filing was thanks to the Libertarian Party of NH re-attaining major party ballot access on the level of the republicans and democrats for the first time in over two decades. That means that the party executive committee has the ability to appoint a slate of candidates to fill any races for which no one had yet filed or won enough write-in votes in the primary election. Parties have one week from the primary date to file such a slate.
It’s an interesting approach and throws a surprise libertarian challenger into a long-stale county sheriff’s race that has been a re-match for several terms between incumbent democrat Eli Rivera and longtime republican challenger Earl Nelson.
Aria DiMezzo, LPNH Chairman Chip Spangler, and Robert Call outside the NH Secretary of State’s Office
DiMezzo claims she’s going to be doing real campaigning and has already launched her campaign website which includes her opinions on ending the entire war on drugs. She admits to being a former opiate addict which means she’s got an insight into the world of drug addiction and the insane War on Drugs not shared by her republican and democrat competitiors. As she points out in her essay,
“Each addict has their own unique reason that they turned to drugs as an escape, and the only way to help any of them, if they decide they want help, will be individually and personally. There is no easy, convenient, one-size-fits-all answer. The folly of simplistic solutions like “Arrest them!” is that it allows us to feel like we are doing something about the problem, but we aren’t–at least, not anything beyond exacerbating it.”
DiMezzo, on her campaign site, also calls for the immediate release of peaceful, “victimless criminals”. She tells me she’s more than happy to do media interviews and appear at any local events to which she is invited. It’s refreshing to finally have a principled freedom-advocating candidate for which to vote in the upcoming Sheriff election this November 6th.
Robert Call and Aria DiMezzo standing outside the state house in Concord.
In addition to the surprise appointment of their first-ever candidate for Sheriff in Cheshire County, Keene’s Ward Four (Cheshire District Seven) has also received a libertarian challenger to democrat newbie Sparky Von Plinsky in the form of former Keene mayoral candidate Robert Call. Call is a free sofware advocate and programmer who lives in Keene. Curiously, his democrat challenger Von Plinsky is a former NSA agent. It should be an interesting race!
That gives the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire more candidates on the general election ballot in Keene than the Republican party who could only scrounge up one candidate for just the Ward 5 election. In order to help keep major party ballot access status, the libertarian candidate for Governor, Jilletta Jarvis must receive at least 4% of the vote. If you’re tired of government ruling your life and always growing more expensive and more demanding, you finally have a choice. You can vote for the multiple libertarian candidates that will be on your ballot in the general election on November 6th. Remember, if you’ve never voted before, New Hampshire allows same-day voter registration. Here’s a City of Keene webpage with information about where you should go to vote.
Stay tuned here to Free Keene for interesting libertarian campaign news.
Forkfest 2018 was a success! From those I spoke with on the subject, we had way more attendees than last year (which was the first year of the new, decentralized libertarian camping festival). Numbers were noticeably heavier on the first day this year and we hit an estimated over 100 by Saturday. 150 more arrived Sunday for Jay Noone’s wedding and many stayed until the final day, Monday, which included parties thrown by Darryl W Perry and the now annual final night bash at Jim and Chris Babb’s campsite.
Darryl W Perry interviews Porcfest head organizer Rodger Paxton in the LRN.FM Tent at Forkfest 2018
The attendees were much more geographically diverse with attendees from across the United States and even from as far away as Lithuania!
Of course, since Forkfest is decentralized and has no organizers or tickets, we really have only estimates of attendance based on observing the state of the campground. That said, it was clearly up maybe three times more than last year, and that’s if you don’t factor in the 150 wedding attendees.
The weather was excellent until the very last day when we were hit with a pounding storm during Free Talk Live‘s recording. Like last year, we broadcast from the event every day from one of the RV sites. Initially it was the opening night hangout for the hardcore campers who showed up for the always-least-populated first day of Thursday.
Friday a group of us hit the US Border Patrol internal checkpoint on which I blogged and posted video from yesterday here.
Rich Paul leads the traditional 4:20 celebration at Forkfest 2018.
On Saturday, we gathered at the LRN.FM broadcast tent for 4:20 with Rich Paul performing his invocation over the PA system. Much cannabis was smoked and a good time had by all.
Sunday was Jay and Shalon Noone’s beautiful wedding and reception, attended by a good portion of the entire park. You can see photos from the wedding as well as the LRN.FM tent broadcasts on my Google Photos album here.
Monday included the parties I mentioned above and many vendors arriving for the Porcupine Freedom Festival which is the long-running, centrally-organized, ticketed libertarian festival that begins at the end of Forkfest.
Speaking of vendors, with the exception of a couple of heroic breakfast vendors, food vending was largely a missed opportunity. Many Forkfest attendees had to acquire their own food throughout a good portion of the festival. Luckily, the restaurant at the just-down-the-street Cabot Inn, “The Olde Bostonian Tavern & Grill” had recently started taking cryptocurrency like Bitcoin (BTC) and DASH! Some of us ate there on multiple evenings!
Word has definitely gotten around about Forkfest and many attendees were only planning on staying for Forkfest rather than staying all the way through the Porcupine Freedom Festival (Porcfest). Attendees I spoke with seemed to appreciate the fact that no one was in charge, the decentralization, and the freedom found at Forkfest as a result. (Porcfest, as an organized, board-directed festival, has acquired a number of undesirable rules and vendor fees that has turned many away over the years.)
Shalon and Jay Noone, shortly after getting married – the first ever at Forkfest.
As with last year, this year’s festival had different names, depending on whom you asked. Whether Forkfest, Somaliafest, or Banned Camp, it’s intended to be the five days prior to the start of the Porcupine Freedom Festival. Forkfest is five full days of no rules (beyond what Rogers Campground already has, and they are pretty hands-off) and just good liberty-oriented company at a beautiful site located in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Each attendee decides what to do, bring, or create for others.
Pencil in Forkfest on your calendar for 2019 from June 13th until the 18th. Those are tentative dates, based on what Porcfest organizer Rodger Paxton said about Porcfest 2019’s likely dates of 6/18-23. For the latest info and to plan for next year with other attendees, please join the unofficial Forkfest forum and Telegram chat, which you can find via the unofficial website at Forkfest.party. You can also RSVP via the Forkfest 2019 entry on Liberty.menu. Given we only promoted this year’s event for three months prior and we’ll be promoting 2019 for a full year, it should be even bigger next year! See you in 2019!
Forkfest 2018, the decentralized liberty camping event has started small but strong, kicking off yesterday at Roger’s Campground in the beautiful White Mountains of Lancaster, New Hampshire.
Liberty-oriented campers hanging out by the LRN.FM broadcast tent, Day One of Forkfest 2018
Like the first event last year, this year started slow on Thursday while many are still at work. By my estimates, more are here already this year than were here last year by this time. Not only that, the geographic variety of attendees is more pronounced. This year already has visitors from Lithuania and the United Kingdom as well as a couple from Virginia. Plus many others have indicated they intend to be here no later than Saturday.
What’s happening at Forkfest 2018? Good question! Parties, athletic events, a wedding, a letter-writing event for Ross Ulbricht, a Mesh Networking session, and others have been announced by various attendees. Of course, plenty of socializing and just hanging out by a campfire. There are already a couple of competing calendars that have popped up for attendees to use to promote whatever events they’re involved with. You can find those calendars via the unofficial Forkfest Forum.
If you’re in the area, come on up to Lancaster and join us. There are no tickets to Forkfest (and no organizers or board of directors)! Your only expenses to enjoy your time with other libertarians, voluntarists, and liberty-loving anarchists are your camping costs from Rogers Campground.
Tavern Owner Laura Hardiman Poses with the Anypay App and Cryptocurrency-Loving Forkfest Attendees
Or, stay in the hotel down the street, where the new hotel restaurant, ‘The Olde Bostonian Tavern & Grill” has started taking cryptocurrency including Bitcoin and DASH! A group of about ten of us went out to eat and several of us paid with crypto, mostly using DASH. The owner was super-excited to receive her first cryptocurrency transactions!
Forkfest continues through Monday the 18th and is expected to grow throughout the weekend. Of course, it’s not going to be the size of the fifteen year event that it was spawned from, the Porcupine Freedom Festival (aka Porcfest), which begins on Tuesday the 19th at noon and runs through Sunday the 25th
Now that Keene’s original Bitcoin and DASH vending machine has been majorly upgraded to the top-of-the-line General Bytes brand, the Shire Free Church was able to move the popular and rock-solid Lamassu brand Cryptocurrency Vending Machine to a new location in Keene!
Thirsty Owl is the home for Keene’s 3rd CVM.
I’m excited to announce that Thirsty Owl, directly across Winchester St from Keene State College, immediately stepped up to take the Lamassu. Thirsty Owl, (formerly known as D’s Cafe) offers beer, wine, and liquor along with excellent and affordable food like sandwiches, tacos, burgers, and even breakfast all day. Owner Darren Humphrey began accepting cryptocurrency at the register in 2017, including Bitcoin Core (BTC) and DASH and was excited to host the area’s third public CVM.
Now, two of the area’s three CVM’s are open seven days a week in downtown Keene, with Thirsty Owl extending cryptocurrency availability into the late night in Keene, as it closes at 2am Thursday through Saturday and 11pm Sunday through Wednesday. You can see full location detail, machine info, and hours on the Thirsty Owl’s new Coin Radar entry here.
Thirsty Owl is also the destination for this week’s Keene Crypto Network Meetup group. We’ll be there at 2pm today (Sunday) so if you have questions about cryptocurrency, there’s no better place to go than our meetup. If you can’t make it, we have meetups every eight days.
The cryptocurrency-accepting bar in Keene, Thirsty Owl, now features a CVM!
This also means Keene continues to be the dominant cryptocurrency hotspot in the Northeast United States and one of the top on the planet. Not only do we have a high amount of cryptocurrency-accepting businesses per-capita (more than major cities worldwide), Keene also trounces bigger cities like New York, Los Angeles, Boston, and Manchester on CVMs per-capita!
If you’re into cryptocurrency and you aren’t living in New Hampshire, especially the hotspots of Portsmouth and Keene, you’re missing out.