Author Archives: ianbernard

Don’t get burned out!

As a longtime Libertarian activist, I know as well as anyone the burnout that can accompany election results. I can totally understand how many of you are feeling right now. Another election season has come and gone, and the LP doesn’t have much to show for it except for a couple of Soil and Water Board seats.

Just look at the dismal numbers. The Libertarian candidates considered the strongest of the pack turned out to be anything but strong in the results. Texas’ much vaunted Bob Smither couldn’t defeat a write-in candidate! Michael Badnarik’s well-funded campaign went down in flames. For all the money his campaign spent, his results were not much better than virtually unfunded campaigns.

Some other “noteworthy campaigns”:
Bruce Guthrie, who pumped in over a million of his own dollars to his campaign couldn’t crack 2%. Phil Maymin and Bill Pierce despite some local coverage, also could not crack 2%.

Just another depressing election for the Libertarian Party. But, hey, we’re still the 3rd largest political party in the United States, right? We’ll show them in 2008!

Riiight.

If this was your first election supporting LP candidates, I hope you didn’t get your hopes up too high. “Burnout” is a very real problem after an election is done. I know it well. It’s one of the reasons why I joined the Free State Project.

After busting my ass for campaigns down in Florida and getting the same dismal results year after year, I joined the FSP. The Libertarian Party continues to fail and each election year picks itself up, dusts itself off and does the same thing all over again.

Three decades of failure means it’s time to do something differently. It’s clear the problem with our movement is we’re spread too thin. 1% here, 2% there. And only a percentage of the people voting LP are actual activists.

Enter the Free State Project.

The FSP is a plan to move Libery loving activists all to the same state: New Hampshire. While only a hundred and fifty “early movers” have arrived, they are already laying the groundwork for activist networks (Like NHFree.com and NHLiberty.org.) that new arrivals will simply be able to “plug-in” to and get active. The early movers are already holding the line for Liberty. They were, for instance, critical in defeating the smoking ban that reared its ugly head this year.

The Free State Project is an idea that’s time has come. Don’t burn out. Channel your anger and disappointment about the LP’s results away and investigate the FSP. Sign the First 1000 Pledge. I suggest you move sooner rather than later. Things are just starting to get interesting up here. I just moved here two months ago and I only regret I didn’t come sooner.

Explore the FSP in person at the upcoming Liberty Forum in Concord this February. John Stossell, Michael Badnarik (an FSP member!), and the Advocates’ Sharon Harris will all be there, and so should you.

Should you choose to stay where you are, expect future election disappointments as all of the best activists from your area continue to move to NH as part of the Second American Revolution.

See you in NH!
-FTL_Ian

( -)-(- )33 comments

FTL vs. Harry Potter

Thanks to your vote the most pro-Liberty radio show and podcast, Free Talk Live, finished last month in 5th place at Podcast Alley. The number one show? A show about Harry Potter. We’ll need to double our votes to get to first place.

Please take a moment and vote for Free Talk Live. It only takes a moment and directly results in new listeners finding the message of Liberty.

http://vote.freetalklive.com (Leave a comment if you like!)

Thank you for listening,
Ian
Host, “Free Talk Live”

http://freetalklive.com

( -)-(- )4 comments

FTL Now on 17 Radio Affiliates Nationwide!

Radio TowerWith the addition of Clear Channel’s WTKG AM 1230 in Grand Rapids, MI, Free Talk Live, the world’s award winning, #1 political podcast is now airing on 17 radio stations from coast to coast! Thanks to the Free Talk Live AMPlifiers, FTL continues to expand into new radio markets. Yours could be next, and perhaps sooner if you call your local talk station.

If you want to help us keep the message of freedom and Liberty front and center in the podcast world, please vote for the show at http://vote.freetalklive.com. It takes one moment, and helps keep us at the top of the Podcast charts.

Thanks for listening!

( -)-(- )2 comments

Free Talk Live Arrives in NH!

Keene Odyssey

Did you know the NH government is directly encouraging people to be irresponsible, shiftless losers? There’s apparently a law here in NH that prevents landlords from collecting last month’s rent upon entering into a lease with a tenant. The NH government is essentially telling people that they can’t make up their own minds and write their own leases to the satisfaction of both parties. This law does not “protect” tenants; it encourages them to screw over landlords. Here’s my story.

When I purchased a duplex here in Keene and inherited the prior owner’s lease, I knew there was going to be a problem. One, there was no last month’s rent collected. I at first thought the old landlords were sloppy; now I know it’s the government’s doing. Two, the tenants with the nearest lease expiration were college students. Some college students haven’t lived outside of their parents’ home and have not really had an opportunity to experience the “real world”. Hence they have little to no understanding of responsibility, contracts, and honor.

I purchased the home in May, and the tenants’ lease was coming up for renewal at the end of August. After closing, I sent written notice to the tenants that they were to move out at the end of the lease. This amounted to 90 days notice! That’s plenty of time to find a new place and move out. I consider that pretty reasonable, but they apparently took it personally.

There is much more to this story:
see more…

( -)-(- )40 comments

Feds Claim Liberty Dollar Usage is Illegal

Buy and sell with the Liberty Dollar? You’re now an outlaw. I hope this publicity serves to make the Liberty Dollar more popular. It’s clear that what the Treasury used to consider an amusing experiment has now become a threat worth outlawing.

Someone introduces real silver backed currency, and they outlaw it. Can’t have any competition now, can we?

Fucking government.
-FTL_Ian

( -)-(- )163 comments

Liberate Someone – Vote for FTL!

FTL LogoAs you probably know, thanks to your votes we won the 2006 Podcast Award for “Best Political”. This month, it’s back to the usual, one vote per month at Podcast Alley. Last month we finished at 4th place. Not bad, but we can do better; especially since we don’t have to promote two different votes this month. It’s just one, and it’s quick and easy:

http://vote.freetalklive.com

Leave a comment if you feel so inclined, ask a few friends to vote as well, and feel good that you just helped to spread the message of Liberty to new people!

Thanks for your help!
Ian
Host, “Free Talk Live”

( -)-(- )4 comments

“Free Market Diggers” Surpasses Old “Libertarian Diggers” Group

As you may be aware, the successful “Libertarian Diggers” group was recently shut down by its owner in the face of criticism. FTL‘s Johnson Rice created the “Free Market Diggers” group and we promoted it once here on Hammer of Truth. It has since exceeded the total number of subscribers of the old group in only 48 hours.

Thanks to those who have become “Free Market Diggers” and are helping “digg” pro-Liberty news stories and opeds to the front page of the popular Digg.com.

Join the fun and help spread the message of Liberty with a few “diggs”. Visit digg.freetalklive.com or just plug your email in here:



( -)-(- )Comments Off

Return of Libertarian Diggers!

The Libertarian Diggers group has returned! After the original group owner took it offline, Johnson Rice decided to start it up again over at Google Groups. It’s a group devoted to promoting Libertarian articles and news stories (like those here on HoT) at the uber-popular Digg.com. If you were involved with the old group, get onboard this one now at http://digg.freetalklive.com.

If you want to know more about Digg, and why the original group owner took down the first list, Johnson elaborates about what happened, and what will be different about this new group:

see more…

( -)-(- )18 comments

Feds Release the Outlaw Flier Distributor!

-=Digg This Story=-
Russell is Free!

After spending weeks in maximum security prison, Russell Kanning has been released. The federal judge sentenced him to time served, no probation, no fine, and a “$20 special assessment fee”. As Russell would likely refuse to pay it, superactivist Lauren Canario stepped in and paid off the thugs.

Why was Russell in maximum, locked down 23 hours a day? Partly because he refused to sign their paperwork. In fact, he was released from the system without signing anything. Why is that relevant? He did not agree to the contracts that they try to force on people via threats and intimidation. He refused to consent to the system.

Details are developing, here’s the official thread at NHFree.com for the latest.

What will happen next in the Free State?

-FTL Ian

( -)-(- )34 comments

Free Talk Live Defeats Bush!

Sad BushThanks to your votes, Free Talk Live has defeated President Bush’s Weekly Address Podcast as well as Barak Obama’s Podcast and “Democracy Now!”. We’ve now won Podcast Awards two years in a row!

We still need your monthly vote at Podcast Alley and would love for you to call your local talk stations and request Free Talk Live, sign up for our Updates, and help us Advertise, Market, and Promote the show.

Thanks for your help!

( -)-(- )10 comments

FTL vs. The POTUS

It’s that time of year again! As you probably know, the most pro-Liberty radio show, “Free Talk Live” won the 2005 Podcast Award for the Political/Cultural category. Now voting has begun for the 2006 awards, and we’ve been nominated for Best Political. We’re competing against the President himself, as well as some other totalitarian trash. You may vote for us in the Podcast Awards once per day through Aug 11th. You’ll find the Political category third from the bottom in the right column.

Thanks to your help, last month we finished at 4th place on Podcast Alley’s Top Ten Podcasts. Now we need your vote again at http://vote.freetalklive.com . If you’ve never voted before, you won’t be spammed, and it takes less than a minute!

These two votes are the easiest way to promote the message of Liberty. Thanks for taking the time!
Ian
Host, “Free Talk Live

( -)-(- )6 comments

Feds Raid Home of Heroic Free Stater

Kanning ArrestLast week Russell Kanning was arrested by federal DHS/ICE agents for trying to hand a flyer to an IRS agent in Keene, NH. Russell refused to show up for court the next day. This morning, federal thugs raided the Kanning household, threw him to the floor, and arrested him. He is to appear in federal court in Concord today.

The latest is here on the NHFree.com forum.

Digg this story!

( -)-(- )104 comments

America’s Most Pro-Liberty Talk Show Now on 15 Stations

Radio Tower
With tomorrow’s addition of “Progressive” WWKK in Petosky, MI to our affiliates list, Free Talk Live now has 15 radio affiliates from coast to coast.

Free Talk Live is easily the most Pro-Liberty talk radio show in the world, and if you aren’t getting Free Talk Live from your local talk station, there are a couple of easy things you can do to help fix that:

1. Contact your local talk station(s), talk to the Programmer, and request Free Talk Live. Be sure to read the FAQ
2. Become an AMPlifier. Our AMPlifiers are directly responsible for getting WWKK and many of our other radio affiliates on the air.

These two easy steps will help spread the message of freedom and liberty faster than anything the movement has ever seen.

Thanks for listening,
FTL_Ian

P.S. Penn Jillette, when will you come on the show? :)

( -)-(- )1 comment

Feds Arrest Heroic Free Stater

Kanning ArrestedKeene, NH resident and Free State Project participant Russell Kanning is on a mission. Wearing overalls, a straw hat and carrying a pitchfork, the thirty-five year old libertarian activist is out to expel the Federal Government from his city. And, despite his lack of sophisticated weaponry, he has triggered quite a response from Washington.

Plain clothed officers and uniformed Department of Homeland Security agents were present in force to meet him at noon today as he appeared at Keene’s IRS office with several supporters. But it wasn’t his pitchfork or his friends that had agents seeing red, it was his handful of….flyers.

“I want them to quit their jobs,” he says, referring to the one or two IRS agents that staff the part-time office on Main Street. His flyers contain a form which he is asking IRS agents to sign, pledging they will stop working for the agency because of what he considers the “evil things” it funds.

Kanning says he is most upset by their use of tax dollars to underwrite the Iraq occupation and also displeased by their arrest this May of Plainfield resident Ed Brown, a prominent tax resister.

When Kanning entered the building, “authorites” quickly interposed themselves.

“I think we could call it tilting at windmills,” he joked. After bantering with the perplexed agents for a few minutes, Russell slowly walked toward the single flight of stairs leading to the IRS office. Officers then quickly, but carefully, placed his hands behind his back and cuffed him.

Activists from NHfree.com, including a professional videographer crowded in to document the event but were elbowed back by agents. They then placed him, his straw hat and his overalls into a DHS squad car minus the pitchfork but grinning and waving to photographers.

He ended up being booked and released from Keene Police Department around 3 p.m., but that’s where the story gets interesting. Instead of going home, Kanning returned to the IRS office and walked straight toward the door (sans flyers), whereupon he was cuffed, booked, and released again, this time, as before, on charges of disorderly conduct.

“I never got to talk with the IRS workers,” he says, “but I did get to ask some Homeland Security guys to quit.”

More details on this unfolding situation are on the NHfree.com forums. Russell, who also happens to be an editor of the Keene Free Press, announced on Free Talk Live tonight that he doesn’t plan on showing up for his court date, which is tomorrow. Stay tuned to FTL for the latest!

( -)-(- )79 comments

Why bother?

Recently, the New Hampshire secession movement has started to gear up. The more I think about secession, the more I like the idea.

In fact, I can’t see any reason to keep the federal government around. Really, what good is it? All it does is tax, threaten, regulate, and destroy freedom.

It’s quite clear that in America we can’t all get along, and nor should we continue to attempt it. I say let the Liberty lovers all move together, socialists all move together, religious zealots all move together, racists all move together, etc…

Screw the USA, it’s done for. Am I wrong? Is there some redeeming quality to the federal government that I am missing? Why should it continue to exist? Please post your suggestions in the comments.

-FTL_Ian

( -)-(- )72 comments

Not so Independent

“Happy Fourth of July!”

What’s wrong with that exclamation? You hear it uttered everywhere, by friends and family, on television, radio, the internet…

Something’s missing, isn’t it?

What’s missing is the actual name of the holiday that Americans used to celebrate on July 4th: “Independence Day” What happened to it? When did popular culture shift away from correctly labeling this holiday? Was this a concious choice? Did someone “in power” decide to start labeling it the “Fourth of July”, or did Americans just up and decide that since freedom is being destroyed they should change the name of the holiday?

It’s interesting to take note of all the different sources one hears “4th of July” around this time of year, and how very seldom “Independence Day” is mentioned. Go ahead, pay attention. It may bother you enough that you’ll correct someone when they get it wrong.

What do Americans believe this day is about? Some popular culture suggests it’s about “celebrating America’s birthday!”. Perhaps most Americans just see it as an excuse to have a day off from work and get drunk. Sort of like St. Patrick’s day, but with fireworks.

Drink up, America! Whatever you do, don’t question anything! Just party on, and leave the thinking to the government!

Now that I’ve been cynical and jaded enough, let’s focus on independence. Perhaps Independence Day can now be a day for people who love Liberty to make resolutions as to how they will make themselves more independent from this insane government. Will you resolve to:

Quit paying income taxes?
Quit collecting state sales tax?
Quit withholding taxes from your employees’ paychecks?
Join the Free State Project, or better yet sign the First 1000 Pledge?
Become an AMPlifier, and help spread the message of Liberty worldwide?

What are your Independence Day resolutions? Please post them to the comments and I may feature them on tonight’s live internet only edition of Free Talk Live.

( -)-(- )74 comments

Spreading the Pro-Liberty Message Doesn’t Get Much Easier than This!

FTLThanks to your help, last month we finished at 4th place on Podcast Alley’s Top Ten Podcasts. Now we need your vote again at http://vote.freetalklive.com . If you’ve never voted before, you won’t be spammed, and it takes less than a minute!

The number one show at Podcast Alley had over 1200 votes, we had over 700. If we double our votes in July, we can finish the month at number one. As you know, that means more new listeners discovering the pro-Liberty message!

Will you tell a few friends or associates about Free Talk Live this month?

By the way, Free Talk Live finished last month at 2nd place on Itunes’ “Political” category. Thanks to everyone who subscribes through Itunes!

Thank you for your help!
Ian
Host, “Free Talk Live”

( -)-(- )1 comment

Property Taxes are Communism

From the Keene Free Press: “Property Taxes are Communism”

What better way to welcome someone to the area than with a huge property tax bill? I just bought some property in Keene, NH and what’s the first thing I get in the mail? A nearly $3,000 bill for property taxes! This amount will only cover six months! Keene’s property taxes are so high, it’s like paying rent again. One of the main reasons I became a homeowner was to get away from throwing money down the rent rathole, now I’m just throwing it down the property tax rathole to the tune of $500 per month.

“What?!” you say, “You have to have property taxes! What about our government services? What about the schools?”. To that I say, wait. Back up. Reset.

see more…

( -)-(- )69 comments

Too Many Donuts for this Cop

For a higher quality version, here’s an alternate link: streaming WMV

Then, please go vote for Free Talk Live this month at http://vote.freetalklive.com. We need double the number of votes we got last month to make it to 1st place and to keep the spotlight on Liberty. After you’ve voted, do tell a few friends to vote for and listen to Free Talk Live!

( -)-(- )4 comments

Who Says We Shouldn’t Talk about the Drug War?

Loretta NallWOW. I’m still reeling from reading this exhilirating post on the blog of Loretta Nall, the Libertarian candidate for governor in Alabama. I had already thought she was an awesome candidate, but now this.

She was at a candidate’s forum where her anti-drug-war comments resulted in two of the candidates for Sheriff doing 180 degree turnarounds on their anti-drug stances during the same forum!!

GO LORETTA!!

( -)-(- )21 comments

Jack Thompson Wants to Destroy Your Freedom!

Jack ThompsonAnti-freedom advocate Jack Thompson discusses his distrust of the market, advocates government, and becomes the first guest to hang up on Free Talk Live! Here’s the archive.

Update by Stephen VanDyke: Here’s a good snippet from the interview that I transcribed:

Ian Bernard: You’re involved in lawsuits with game manufacturers, gaming companies like Take2 Interactive.. that sort of thing. The people that produce games like Grand Theft Auto. You posited before that you’re really only for the restriction of sales to minors. So my question is: Why are you suing the game manufacturers is you’re not against the content itself?

Jack Thompson: Because a minor bought that particular game and killed two cops.

Bernard: And that’s the fault of the game manufacturers?

Thompson: Sure.

Bernard: Why should they have to pay for that?

see more…

( -)-(- )15 comments

Now, Where’s the USPS Plane Radar?

“FedEx vs. Thunderstorm” as found at Dvorak.

The desire for profit does amazing things! Now if we could only see the USPS planes…

( -)-(- )5 comments

For Those Who Don’t/Can’t Listen to Free Talk Live

As you’re aware, last night we discussed the reason that the national LP refuses free national airtime on Free Talk Live. For those of you who couldn’t listen to the archive, here’s the email we were discussing from Shane Cory, LP Chief of Staff, and my response:

Shane,

I’m glad you like the show, and if you come up with something we can work together on, do contact me. I have no intention of burning a bridge because you made a mistake. Allow me to explain.

Yes, I’ll stand by my previous decision and won’t be sending an e-mail to our list for appearing on your show. As I stated before, I’ve never been asked by any producer at any level to do such a thing and won’t make it a condition for me or my staff getting on a show.

That’s your mistake. As I will show, this is the LP’s loss, not FTL’s.

You are correct about “scratching backs.” Typically how it works is a guest takes the time to appear on a show to give a compelling interview that will please the listeners and improve a show’s content. In exchange, the organization that the guest represents earns media through the appearance. That is how this system has worked for many, many years . . . long before we came along my friend.

Argumentum ad antiquitatem – Just because something is old doesn’t make it right or good. FTL does not need guests at all. We invite very few and we appreciate them, and even archive their appearance on our Guests page, with permanent links to the guest’s organization/interest. Yep, the RLC has a permanent link from the FTL site, and the LP is nowhere to be found.

Aside from that, let me be clear that this isn’t simply about stubbornness (possibly on my part as I am a stubborn guy and vicious in protecting the organizations that I serve). We have a valuable e-mail list and every time we send out an e-mail we get unsubscribes. Every message that is sent must have a specific purpose and benefit to the LP or be seen as high interest to the recipients. By doing this, I’ve been able to keep the e-mail list subscriber numbers climbing for many months (ten to be exact).

Understood. Why is Alan Colmes of more interest than FTL? Or did you change your policy after announcing the last Alan Colmes appearance?

In regards to the email list, what makes you think the recipients would not be interested in the only national radio show with real libertarians on it?

If I start sending out radio show announcements it would happen nearly every day and turn into an annoyance immediately. That happened under the previous administration and I’m having to rebuilt the list after a strong decline.

I disagree with your policy. I used to enjoy the announcements, perhaps you should have more than one email list. One for people that like to hear things from the LP, the other for the people that don’t like emails.

More frequent releases make you seem alive. Releases about media appearances make you seem relevant, especially if they are happening daily.

Should I break that stance and send out an announcement for FTL? What about the next host or producer that does that same using the FTL message as the precedent? I sincerely hope that you see my point of view.

If there’s some other national radio show with a true Libertarian message, you should send out a release for them too.

Really, I’m only writing this since this was all ressurected by chance and to clear the air so you know where I’m coming from. I don’t expect anything from you, and I don’t need anything. If you decide to play ball, it will only help you.

I could care less what you do in regards to my show at this point, Shane. That’s why I wasn’t calling. We’ll do just fine without you, and keep promoting other great Liberty minded organizations that have figured out how beneficial appearing on our show is.

For the LP’s sake, I hope you come to your senses. It doesn’t sound good when things like this come up on the air. The good news is, we’ll draw people to you anyway by nature of being Libertarians, so enjoy the free members we send your way. Speaking of that, you’d be really wise to advertise with us. We’re the number one recruiter for the Free State Project, and we’re really affordable. ;)

FTL_Ian

( -)-(- )23 comments

1 / 2 pages of common sense12