Yesterday, New Hampshire governor Chris Sununu announced that a “stay-at-home” order would be going into effect at 11:59pm tonight. As though he hadn’t already damaged New Hampshire businesses and economy with his previous tyrannical orders, this one instructs all “non-essential” businesses to close, putting even more people out of work.
Mayoral Candidate Nobody and City Council Candidates Ian Freeman and Robert Call toke up at Central Square in 2019.
Sununu claimed on his facebook post announcing the “order” that disrupting Granite Stater’s daily lives is only done in the greatest of emergencies. Really? This Coronavirus thing isn’t even as bad as the flu yet – even if you go by the government numbers, which of course are in no way trustworthy.
What is happening is government goons are grabbing power as quickly and as firmly as they can, and they are using fear to do it. It’s the same old scam, but this time they are going farther than ever. Though Sununu hasn’t gone as far or as hard as New York, he’s made it clear that “Live Free or Die” is just an empty slogan. Sadly, the fearmongering works, and many people are begging to be told what to do under the auspices of safety.
Tonight, Keene-area libertarians will be commiserating and protesting our lost freedoms, by gathering in Central Square at 12:01am, after Sununu’s “order” goes into effect. We will be bringing back a classic event from about a decade ago called “Keene Nightcap”, where participants are encouraged to bring a mind-altering substance to enjoy in the company of others.
Though Sununu doesn’t deserve much credit for his tyrannical moves, at least there are a couple of loopholes in the stay-at-home “order”, which may actually make such a gathering allowed, so long as people practice so-called “social distancing”. That said, it sure would be outrageous for police to arrest people who voluntarily choose to hug each other. If you’re not scared, come on out and join us tonight at midnight!
“Nobody”, the New Hampshire candidate for governor challenging incumbent Chris Sununu in the republican primary has already gotten coverage in the Boston Globe for his announcement of an event to challenge Sununu’s outrageous ban on free assembly of over 50 people. Actually, as I am writing this article, Sununu just announced at a press conference that he’s now restricting gatherings to no more than TEN people. We’re still waiting on the written “order”, but it will likely be posted here to the governor’s website later.
Nobody tokes at the Concord state house 420 – AP Photo
Last week, Sununu announced multiple “executive orders” that destroyed significant freedoms in New Hampshire, like the freedom to run a restaurant or bar as he threatened business owners if they dare to allow customers to eat or drink in their establishments. The hospitality industry is severely damaged as a result, with all servers out of work, volume of orders significantly down, and many restaurants choosing to close down completely as a result. It is an attack on the right to serve our neighbors who wish to take whatever risk and go out to eat. People who wish to quarantine themselves are free to do so without a “order” from the governor but those who wish to continue living a normal life or run their business are being threatened by state agents if they do, all under the excuse of “public health”.
Another of his executive orders trampled on the basic human right of assembly – being able to get together with other people. This weekend, Nobody announced an event to challenge Sununu’s order by violating it with over 50 people gathering on the state house steps on Wednesday April 1st at 2pm. While we were pretty sure at the time we could get at least fifty-one people to come to the state house, now that it’s been reduced to ten people it’s a certainty that we can do it, as this weekend sixteen people gathered in Keene for our regular “Social Sunday” meeting.
Now-Illegal Gathering of Over a Dozen in Keene, Yesterday
On his official campaign blog, ElectNobody.com, Nobody announced the civil disobedience event and reminded people where the state’s supposed motto came from: “Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils.” – General John Stark. Before last week, New Hampshire was not a free state, but now all illusions of freedom have been completely wiped away and it’s become all-out tyranny. Something must be done. It’s time to stand up for the freedom to assemble.
Here is an event to which you can RSVP at Liberty.menu – please do. Bring your friends, signs, and your video cameras. See you at the state house steps at 2pm, Wednesday April 1st. Maybe we’ll go up and pay a visit to Sununu’s office while we’re there too!
Unofficial Forkfest Logo
Have you been to Forkfest yet? If you have, you already know how great it was and are likely planning to return. If you haven’t been yet, you won’t want to miss Forkfest 2020. Forkfest is a libertarian decentralized camping festival, with no board of directors or organizer, so there’s nothing official about it in any way, but this week, Rogers Campground‘s owner Crosby Peck has “officially” welcomed Forkfesters back for the fourth annual festival happening in 2020 from June 29th through July 5th.
Of course, those are just some arbitrary dates chosen by some Forkfest old timers, who this year decided that Forkfest 2020 would move and expand to the entire week after the Porcupine Freedom Festival. Though Porcfest has yet to officially announce their dates, we have no reason to wait. For the first time ever, Forkfest will coincide with Independence Day weekend!
Rogers Campground for decades has been known for having a well-attended Indpendence Day weekend, complete with a fireworks show. Rumor is the fireworks professional Rogers has hired for years is retiring soon, but there’s a good chance Crosby will be hiring someone else to keep the longstanding tradition going. Whatever happens with the campground’s fireworks show, Forkfest will surely be a perfect event to happen during that timeframe. Many Forkfest attendees are big secession fans who love the idea of New Hampshire independence.
Given the point of Forkfest is that attendees create the event they want without asking permission, it should be interesting to see the variety of ways independence will be celebrated across the week, leading up to Independence Day that Saturday July 4th, which happens to also be the final night of Forkfest 2020.
Pirates’ Big Gay Somalian Road Builders Disco at Forkfest 2019
Something else Forkfest attendees seemed highly interested in this year was cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, DASH, and Bitcoin Cash. All the food vendors at Forkfest this year were offering their wares for those three cryptos, at least. As a result, this year’s Forkfest felt like a libertarian crypto festival, held in the woods. At one time, Porcfest felt similarly, when people like Roger Ver, Charlie Shrem, and Erik Voorhees all attending the event during Bitcoin’s earlier years. I don’t like predictions, but think it’s safe to say the crypto aspect of the event will continue and perhaps even grow stronger at Forkfest 2020.
If you want to attend, keep in mind that the demand for camping, RV sites, and hotel rooms will likely be even higher in 2020, not just because Forkfest grew significantly on its own from 2018 to 2019, but also because in 2020 we’ll be mixing with the regular Independence Day weekend campers. Plus, since Forkfest will be following Porcfest in 2020 and it was heavily marketed to Porcfesters this year, you can expect more people to stay on if they were already attending Porcfest. Make sure you lock-in your reservations for June 29th through July 5th as soon as possible. You can visit Rogers Campground’s website and call them at 603-788-4885.
Want an excuse to stay in the Shire even longer? The long-running Porcupine Freedom Festival aka Porcfest will be happening before Forkfest in 2020, though you do have to buy a ticket to attend Porcfest, while there is no ticket required or even available for Forkfest, as there’s no organization to support. Forkfest is New Hampshire’s decentralized libertarian camping festival. No one is in charge, so everyone is. Hope to see you at Forkfest 2020!
Meanwhile, you may also want to connect with other past and future Forkfest attendees. It’s easy to do that with the popular unofficial Forkfest Telegram channel and also the Forkfest forum at the Shire Forums. Want to show the world you are planning to attend? RSVP on the Liberty.menu event here and then share it on your favorite social media!
Unofficial Forkfest Wide Logo
Today, Tuesday October 8th, is the Keene municipal primary. As you already know, the ballot is rife with candidates who want to make the expensive Keene city government even bigger and more invasive. However, there are a few candidates who want to reduce the government in Keene. Here are my recommendations for the 2019 Keene primary ballot:
Elect Nobody Sign
Mayor- “Nobody” Yes, Nobody is actually going to be on your ballot!
City Council – At Large:
Matthew “Matt” Roach
City Council – Ward 2:
James “AriaDiMezzo” Baker
City Council – Ward 4:
Robert J Call
City Council – Ward 4 – two-year term
Remember that in races where you can vote for more than one person, just voting for the candidates you support most is called “bullet voting”, which helps those candidates just a little more, because you aren’t using whatever votes that you have remaining to increase the totals of their competition.
Back in 2017 a few NH liberty activists, including Free Keene bloggers Derrick and Steven decided to create their own friendly competitor to the Porcupine Freedom Festival, initially called Somaliafest. The idea was that it would be a decentralized alternative to Porcfest, which is the yearly festival thrown at Rogers Campground by the Free State Project. A few dozen folks came out to attend it and it went by a few names at the time. People seemed to have a good time so they decided to do it again in 2018.
Forkfest Sponsors Porcfest!
The most important thing to know is that there’s no central committee deciding anything for the decentralized event. Just about the only thing generally agreed upon are the dates. Even the name has changed, depending on who you ask. In 2018, Free Keene blogger Darryl W Perry came up with the catchy name, “Forkfest”, which seems to have stuck with many participants. An unofficial Forkfest website was launched along with an unofficial Telegram chat room and unofficial Forkfest Forum. Liberty.menu has created an event to which one can RSVP. Last year there were even two competing event calendars made by attendees.
Darryl’s “Forkfest” name speaks to the idea that this event “forked” off from the Porcupine Freedom Festival. Some have noted that attending Forkfest felt to them like the first original Porcfests, which were much less centrally managed early on than they are today. Porcfest is still a great event, but its direction over the years has resulted in some wanting an alternative, and now they have it as Forkfest 2019 is coming up June 13th through 18th, at Rogers Campground. There are no ticket prices, as there is no organization behind the event. It’s just a bunch of liberty loving people coming to the same campground at the same time. Whatever happens, happens.
Some Forkfest attendees may just want to hang out and camp with other like-minded people while others may wish to create activities and events for their fellow attendees. Usually, they’ll announce their plans on the Telegram chat or Forkfest forum and already there’s going to be “Mancamp”, nightly dance parties thrown by Anypay, and looks like at least a couple of food vendors. Maybe there’s something you want to see happen? Make it happen!
Five-Hour Rave at Forkfest 2017
One excited past Forkfest attendee, Chris Waid of tech talk show Freedom Decrypted has stepped up to help promote Forkfest by purchasing a major sponsorship of Porcfest! Thanks to Waid’s efforts, Forkfest is now a Gold level sponsor of Porcfest! That means Porcfest’s VIP tent will be provided by Forkfest and Forkfest fliers will be in all Porcfest attendees’ bags, promoting Forkfest 2020. When asked about his reasons for sponsoring the event, Waid said, “As a programmer and CEO of a tech company that deals in free or open source software where forking is a common solution to problems of centralization it would have been difficult for me to pass on an opportunity to help sponsor events I love and particularly when one has been forked from the other.”
Porcfest is also promoting the sponsorship in advance of this year’s event, alerting Porcfest attendees that Forkfest 2019 is happening and is a great excuse to stay in New Hampshire even longer. Together, the events span 10 days and are both held at the same campground. Forkfest is this June 13th through 18th and Porcfest is the 18th through the 23rd.
The line outside prior to PKG’s opening.
This afternoon at just before three, approximately 25 people were in line to be the first paying customers at the new Keene Vietnamese restaurant, “Pho Keene Great“. If you’re new to the Pho Keene Great story, here’s a recap of what happened with their viral showdown with the City of Keene’s Dragon. When the door was opened for the first time today, the initial customers were welcomed by the PKG crew, all wearing black uniforms including t-shirts and hats bearing the Pho Keene Great logo.
PKG’s bustling staff-on-duty numbered at least a dozen plus Chris Rietmann, the proprietor of Route 101 Local Goods, who was at the front at a table offering the hot-selling Pho Keene Great merchandise like t-shirts, hats, bumper stickers and the newest item – tote bags. Plus, each customer walking in was given a free limited-run “Live Pho or Die!” sticker in the shape of New Hampshire and featuring the PKG logo character.
If you aren’t able to come to Keene and still want your own Pho Keene Great gear, you can order it online with your credit card or cryptocurrency like bitcoin at Route 101 Local Goods.
Only a fraction of the busy crew on-duty at PKG.
After the initial group entered, more came in and by the time I left an hour later, not only was I full, but so was Pho Keene Great. Founder Isabelle Rose was seen in the kitchen, constantly active and focused on preparing the delicious food.
The guy sitting next to me at the bar, Matt, has spent most of his life running professional kitchens and he makes a habit of reviewing the restaurants he visits on Yelp. His review for Pho Keene Great was the first the restaurant had received and he left five stars and this review:
I was in line for the grand opening and was served second out of the group. I ordered their meatball pho.
Broth: simple, clear, delicate.
Meatballs: dense, perfect.
Route 101 Local Goods’ Chris Rietmann talks to a happy customer.
Service: excellent, professional, well seasoned.I’ve been a part of at least 20 restaurant openings in my career and looking around at this one, I see very few foibles or parts that need polish. The food was barely too long in coming, but this is literally DAY ONE, HOUR ONE. I’m extremely impressed at how well out together and error-free this has been, and I can’t wait to come back. I’m so happy not only that there’s a pho place in town, but moreso that there’s a place in town with truly fantastic food and service in a restaurant that is perfectly suitable for everything from family dinners and celebrations to business dinners.
Southeast Asian food should tick all boxes when it comes to flavor in each bite. Pho Keene Great delivers on that necessity and does it in a classy but relaxed environment, and at a reasonable price. Definitely recommend.
The restaurant will initially be open at 3pm daily except Tuesdays and offer a limited dinner menu, though with a full bar and liquor license. They even have a beer on tap from Marlborough’s Frogg Brewing.
Later they are planning to expand Pho Keene Great to include lunch and take-out, but for now they’re keeping it simple to get the gears turning. The restaurant is located next door to City Hall at 11 Central Square in Keene, NH. Here are a few more photos I snapped of the grand opening: (more…)