Announcing the Seacoast Annual Freedom Expo 4-27-13

The Seacoast Annual Freedom Expo takes place on Saturday, April 27 2013 at the historic Exeter Town Hall from 10:00 a.m until 6:00 p.m.

800px-Exeter_Town_Hall

There will be workshops, tables, speakers, vendors, and other activities all day long. This is similar to a free, one day version of the Liberty Forum, and we expect an even larger crowd than last year, especially with no admission cost. For vendors and groups, tables are still available for $35, or $50 for a spot near the main entrance.

The Exeter Town Hall is in downtown Exeter, New Hampshire on Front Street.

Learn more about this event and RSVP on the Facebook event. https://www.facebook.com/events/379324032151010/

Regional NH House Budget Hearing – Rochester 3-18-13 at 5:00-8:00PM

This month there will be 5 regional NH House hearings on the next NH state budget. This is your chance to show up and say that you are against the proposed gas tax increase, the cigarette tax increase, the overall budget increase and that you want to see the budget CUT so that government SHRINKS. Bring a friend and show up. Speak out for smaller government and make a difference.

ROCHESTER, Monday, March 18 from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Rochester Community Center, 150 Wakefield Street, Rochester, New Hampshire
Facebook event link https://www.facebook.com/events/519223271469459/

Other Regional Hearings:
CONCORD, March 7 from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. in Rep’s Hall at the State House
WHITEFIELD, Monday, March 11 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at White Mountains Regional High School, 127 Regional Road, Whitefield
NASHUA, Monday, March 11 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Nashua Community  College, 505 Amherst Street, Nashua
CLAREMONT, Monday, March 18 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Sugar River Valley Regional Technical Center, 111 South Street, Claremont

Voting time!

Unless you’re one of the voluntaryists who has given up on the state altogether, tomorrow is an important day! Cities in New Hampshire all have their municipal elections.

Get out and vote! If you can take time off work, go hold a sign for a candidate or two. If you’re in Portsmouth, help David inform the voters about taxers.

I will be voting for Jack Thorsen, Bill St. Laurent, and Esther Kennedy for City Council, and Tom Martin for School Board. There are other candidates whom I find acceptable, though not great, but with a multiple-seat election like this, limiting one’s votes increases their strength.

Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival

The 10th year of the Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival which celebrates the region’s seafaring tradition is coming up.  The performances are free and the festival takes place at several locations in and around Market Square in Portsmouth on September 26 and September 27.

This year, our own Chris Maden will be performing both a solo and a joint session at the festival.

Come out and enjoy the seacoast, live music and the wonderful autumn season here in New Hampshire.

Detailed Schedule of Events
Add’l Info on the Event

Pork Roast!!!

When:  August 29, 2009 @ 11am

Where:  Rochester, New Hampshire Fairgrounds

Sponsored by the New Hampshire Advantage Coalition, The 9.12 Project, Coalition of New Hampshire Taxpayers & Cornerstone Policy Research and many others.  This event will bring taxpayers and fellow patriots together to hear from speakers on the dangers of local spending, nationalized health care, national cap and trade schemes, as well as state and federal budget analysis.

The event is $10 per ticket or $25 per family of four.

You may obtain your ticket from Tom Hudson …or via the New Hampshire Advantage website.

For additional details, please visit the New Hampshire Advantage Coalition website.

New Hampshire HCR 6 Rally

Below is video footage from today’s HCR6 Rally in Concord, New Hampshire.  As noted, there were about 350 people (some accounts state over 500 as there were additional people in the State House passing out information regarding the resolution) in the cold weather at 8am.

While the rally went well, the resolution did not pass (see how your representative voted here) which was not too much of  a surprise.  It is wonderful news though now that we know who doesn’t understand this resolution, as well as the encouraging news to see states all across the union bringing similar resolutions up in their state legislative bodies.

I like my neighbors

The week started promisingly last Wednesday, when the Association of Portsmouth Taxpayers decided to proceed with a spending cap. To be blunt, the New Hampshire Advantage Coalition literally lives for this stuff and would push forward anyway, but APT decided to be the local lead organization at that meeting. So don’t miss the next one, at which the necessary twenty-five registered Portsmouth voters will be selected to sign the affidavit to get the ball rolling.

Monday was another City Council meeting; far more interesting than I had expected from the agenda. It started out badly, though. I apologize in advance for a long post here; there are so many things to rant about from the start of this meeting.

First, I tried to be late to the meeting; the Pledge of Allegiance gives me hives. I’ve already ranted about this elsewhere. I arrived as the Boy Sprouts (who had presented the colors) were reading some letter about their Citizenship Merit Badge. This was followed by two proclamations.

And so, on to the next rant. The culture of proclamations and commendations is extremely distasteful to me. It serves to reinforce the notion that the government is here to give the people stuff. So someone in the community did something good—how nice! I will happily shake their hand and congratulate them; maybe give some money if it’s that kind of good deed. But why does the apparatus of government—already oversized—need to extend itself officially? As a proxy for the community, I suppose, but that’s exactly the problem; the government is force personified, and should not be used frivolously. Even to wish your great-grandma a happy one hundredth birthday; leave that to Willard Scott.

Rant the third: The first proclamation concerned Read Across America, which is in observation of Dr. Seuss’s birthday. The Council proclaimed 20 February as Read Across Portsmouth Day; all very well and good. Then a teacher (dressed as the Cat in the Hat) read a poem exhorting Portsmouth residents to participate. It was terrible. Rhymed couplets are close to the lowest form of poetry to start with, but I would have expected a teacher to have a better grasp of meter—or any grasp of it at all, for that matter. This poem was the kind of butchery you might expect to hear one elderly relative declaim in honor of another elderly relative’s birthday or anniversary. I suppose one could make some sort of observation about public education from this, but I would be reluctant as it is only one data point. There may be Portsmouth public school teachers with a grasp of meter—though I am sure the doggerel nauseated them as much as it did me. The ode was followed with a song performed by elementary school students; their voices were good enough, but the song was swill and severely under-rehearsed. I felt bad for the Councilors, briefly; the same culture of proclamations about which I was ranting in the preceding paragraph has come back to bite them in the form of the citizenry performing dog-and-pony shows for them, which they must pretend to enjoy.

The other proclamation declared 11 March as Registered Dietitian Day. Fortunately, no dietitians were inspired to song, dance, or oratory by the declaration.

Now on to actual business! Well, first we have public comment; this is when any resident can have three minutes to ramble about whatever while the Councilors get their paperwork in order. Four took the offer this time.

There were three public hearings; the first two were identical and uncontroversial measures to raise the income limits for elderly people or people with disabilities seeking property tax exemptions.

The third concerned skateboarding, and this is when I realized (again) how much I like living in New Hampshire. Currently, skateboarding on the streets or sidewalks is illegal in all of Portsmouth. Nearly everyone realizes that this is stupid. A proposed ordinance came out of the Traffic & Safety committee to allow skateboarding throughout the city, except the Downtown Business District. So far, so good. But somewhat to the Council’s own surprise and to the consternation of a large number of people, the lifting of the ban came with a giant pile of restrictions: helmets, kneepads, and elbow pads must be worn at all times, and the wheels of the device must not leave the ground. Person after person, from age 12 to 50s or 60s came up to say the same thing: don’t legislate away responsibility. Let people take responsibility for their own actions. Let parents do their job as parents and be responsible for their kids. Don’t give cops more grounds for selective enforcement and harassment of youth. On, and on; I was so very pleased. The parallels were made to New Hampshire’s (current) lack of a seatbelt law for adults in cars, and the lack of a requirement for motorcyclists or bicyclists to wear helmets. Only two crotchety old men (one self-described, the other self-evident) opposed lifting the ban at all, on the grounds that Someone Could Get Hurt.

What was really amazing here was that the City Council agreed! They had not expected the restrictive language; the City Attorney apparently put that in to protect the city from liability issues. That’s his job, but the Council sent it back to Traffic & Safety (rather than attempting to revise it on the fly) to be redrafted without the restrictions. The state motto was invoked several times, and the Assistant Mayor—and he may regret this, as I intend to hold him to it in the future—said, “I’m a Live Free Or Die guy.” Councilor Dwyer continued to reinforce my perception that she is the real-life version of Kyle’s Mom from South Park; she went on at some length about a reconsideration of the city’s entire alternative transportation infrastructure, the use of bike lanes, safety rules for all human-powered transit, etc.

After all that excitement, a few mundane things were covered, the only one of note (to me) is that the Seacoast Growers Association is renewing its use of the City Hall parking lot for the weekly farmers’ markets. This continues to tie them to the city’s whim concerning things like sales of uninspected chicken meat. I wish they could find a private space, as they have in Dover, before the city Health Officer realizes that the eggs and “exotic meat” (such as venison or elk) are not necessarily inspected either.

Well, I do believe that was my longest post yet. I hope to see a few more liberty-minded folks at the APT meeting on the 18th, and I would love suggestions on what else can be done to advance liberty at the local level here in Portsmouth.