“Free Staters told to set clock for 2015″

That’s today’s headline from the NH Sunday News (Union Leader).  Yesterday, at the Liberty Forum in Nashua, the president of the Free State Project, Carla Gericke, said that she didn’t want to wait for 20,000 people to sign up before they swarm into New Hampshire. Apparently, their “Free State Now” recruitment drive isn’t working. She estimated that they’d reach 20,000 in 2018, and for her that’s too long to wait. There currently are 13,700 pledgers.

The paper was unhelpful in assessing how much weight to place on Gericke’s words. I would guess that she’s expressing a widely-felt desire within the organization. I have no idea just how an anarchist organization (?!) goes about making a decision like this. They may not make a group decision at all – it may mean that several thousand will just start showing up without any formal “trigger” beyond a very informal agreement.

The Project has applied for 501(c)3 status, and is trying to raise $270,000 for marketing, recruiting, – and a salary for Gericke.

I wonder how many of them are going to be able to find work? Many will try to start businesses here. They are often temperamentally suited to self-employment, and it makes tax avoidance a lot easier. Maybe we’ll become a bit more Vermontey, in the sense of having a lot more tiny businesses.  I wonder what the folks who can’t make a living will do? I’m sure that at first they’ll take care of their own to a some extent.  But there will probably be many successful immigrants for whom “subsidizing others’ failure” will be a wholly unacceptable, un-Randian notion.

32 Responses to “Free Staters told to set clock for 2015″

  1. Rep. Jim Splaine February 25, 2013 at 12:17 am #

    What bothers me most about the so-called “Free State Project” is that it lacks a sense of community. There’s no “it takes a village” philosophy in it, which to me is a core American and New Hampshire value.

    “Freedom” isn’t fulfilled by the mindset of leave-me-alone. It’s realized by sharing the spirit of adventure in our lives with each other — pushing self-centeredness aside in favor of cheering each other on to be successful and happy.

    And being mindful of a better future for ALL of us.

    • BobRobertson February 28, 2013 at 6:43 pm #

      This is a strange comment, especially to have gotten so many thumbs-up.

      Have you ever interacted with any FSP participants, Mr. Splaine? Have you heard of Shire Sharing?

      I can think of 5 “community” gatherings either founded or promoted by FSPersons in just the next 4 days, which directly contradicts your assertion.

      For that matter, basic economics, the division of labor, and even the idea of “coming together in New Hampshire to make a better place for everyone” contradicts your assertion.

      Would you care to discuss why you have this erronious impression about people you’ve never met?

  2. mevansnh February 25, 2013 at 6:03 am #

    Sadly, Jim, I think that most republicans and teabaggers today fall into that category of “leave-me-alone” and pay your own way self-centeredness. To them there is no common good. Look how they tried to begin the dismantling of public schools in the last biennium. They love the fetus but hate the child, unless the child can be used for fodder in imperialistic wars far from home.

    • Chris Blodgett February 28, 2013 at 12:23 pm #

      “I think that most republicans and teabaggers today fall into that category of “leave-me-alone” and pay your own way self-centeredness.”

      Until it comes to what people do in their privacy of their bedrooms and homes…

      • BobRobertson February 28, 2013 at 6:45 pm #

        Good thing those FSP types aren’t “conservatives” or “teabaggers”.

        • susanthe March 2, 2013 at 10:54 am #

          Au contraire, Mr. Robertson. The FSP contingent in the last legislature voted mostly in lockstep with the odious party leadership.

          • BobRobertson March 6, 2013 at 8:34 pm #

            Susanthe, you might want to check your notions against the voting records.

            The reason for the impression of “lock step”, except for same-sex marriage as one example, was just because the votes you object to and therefore notice were repeals and limitations upon the power of government.

            Where Democrats desire limitations or repeals of the power of government, such as repeal of drug prohibition, repeal of marriage restrictions, repeal of violations of due process, privacy, and the like, you’ll find that the FSPersons are “lockstep” with the Democrats and directly opposed to the Republican “law and order” stereotype.

            There is a reason that there are Democrat FSPersons. Where Democrats believe in individual liberty, there is no disagreement at all.

            • susanthe March 6, 2013 at 9:58 pm #

              What a steaming pantload. There may be Free Staters serving in the NH House as Democrats, but only one of them can actually be considered one. The others ran as Democrats in the hopes of fooling the electorate. They don’t caucus with the Dems, nor do they vote with them.

              As for checking voting records – I suggest you might want to take your own recommendation.

              Andrew Manuse, Carol McGuire, Dan McGuire, and Laura Jones all voted to repeal NH’s marriage equality law last year. That’s not what I’d call lockstep.

              • BobRobertson March 7, 2013 at 8:12 am #

                “Andrew Manuse, Carol McGuire, Dan McGuire, and Laura Jones all voted to repeal NH’s marriage equality law last year”

                I was unaware that these people had moved here because of the FSP. For the sake of this discussion, I will grant it as fact.

                Now, what about the other 8? The “twice as many Free Staters who voted against it”?

                I recall you lambasting anyone who would dare to register as a Democrat who wouldn’t have, as you put it, “Party Loyalty”. Well, you’ve claimed “lockstep”, but provided an example which directly disproves your assertion, with twice as many who did not “lockstep” at all.

                Why can’t you admit that in those areas where you believe in individual liberty, you and I can agree? Can’t you overcome your hatred enough to admit that people are individuals, and can agree and disagree about different things?

                • susanthe March 9, 2013 at 11:16 am #

                  By making this about ME, you’re attempting to divert attention from the fact that you were wrong to claim that Free Staters would be in lockstep on issues of individual liberty.

                  A pity you couldn’t just admit that you were wrong and move on. Instead you chose to avoid, justify, project, divert, and attempt to make all of this somehow MY fault. That’s a shoddy tactic that only serves to underscore the craven core of the FSP.

  3. SethCohn February 26, 2013 at 9:54 pm #

    Nitpick-y correct: ‘Apparently, their “Free State Now” recruitment drive isn’t working. She estimated that they’d reach 20,000 in 2018, and for her that’s too long to wait.’

    In fact, that estimate is BEFORE the Free State Now recruitment drive begins, and one of the main reasons for it. Cart before Horse and all that jazz.

    If folks had shown up in Nashua and listened to the many different folks speaking (including a variety of left-learning folks as speakers), they’d have learned that some of their common conceptions about the FSP were in fact misconceptions. Sadly, few took advantage of the chance. A few did though. I heard about one woman who is a local schoolteacher who told a dinner companion of mine that she’d learned a lot about a number of issues she’d never heard before and was feeling both overwhelmed and depressed by how much she hadn’t known about the state of things. Waking up is hard to do, taking the red pill isn’t the easy road.

    • BobRobertson February 28, 2013 at 6:49 pm #

      Seth, it is sad that so few “outsiders” took advantage of Liberty Forum. It’s not like anyone is hiding, or restricting, or preventing anyone from finding out anything they want to know.

      I think Susanthe would have had a blast a Church of the Sword, for instance, if for no other reason than to take a swing at me (and likely hit, I’m not very good).

      The story about the schoolteacher is heartening. I’m one of those who believes that the more people learn, the wider their experiences, the better able they are to make decisions. Especially when those decisions effect others.

      The “Walk a Mile in their Shoes” thing.

      Would that those with such vigorous opinions would back them up with experience, rather than assumptions.

  4. susanthe February 26, 2013 at 10:36 pm #

    As far as setting the clock – the FSP has been resetting their clock since they chose to invade NH. http://freestateproject.org/news/releases/1000members.php

    If memory serves, they were all supposed to be here by now.


    It’s interesting that a group that prides itself on not being any sort of organized structure is applying for GUMMINT non-profit status, and wants to pay the President of the completely unorganized and non hierarchical organization a salary.

    In other words – everything they say about not being organized is bullshit. Obviously. For a non-organized group, they sure do have a lot of organized events. And they (in the guise of the NH Liberty Alliance) have a lobbyist. This is an organized, funded movement – despite their attempts to tell us otherwise.

    And count on it, Seth will be back to tell us the FSP creation myths and clutch his pearls at the thought that the FSP is a Koch Brothers creation.

    • BobRobertson February 28, 2013 at 6:51 pm #

      Susanthe, please quote where anyone associated with the FSP said the FSP was not organized.

      You know this game, you’ve made a direct assertion, to wit:

      “everything THEY say about not being organized is bullshit.” (emphasis added)

      Now do what you’ve demanded I do and provide your source. Please.

      • susanthe March 2, 2013 at 10:57 am #

        You’ve never provided a single source or a quote – and I’ve asked you for plenty.
        Nice try. Well, no. Lame try. Tell you what – go over the list of all my requests to you, and answer them, and then maybe we’ll talk about this.

        • BobRobertson March 6, 2013 at 8:37 pm #

          “Nice try. Well, no. Lame try.”

          I see. You have no source. Thank you.

          • susanthe March 6, 2013 at 9:47 pm #

            Are you still denying that you’re part of the FSP, Bob?

            • BobRobertson March 7, 2013 at 7:59 am #

              Are you still changing the subject, Susanthe?

              • susanthe March 7, 2013 at 12:14 pm #

                Asking yet another question you don’t want to answer. Imagine my surprise!

                • BobRobertson March 8, 2013 at 10:01 pm #

                  Susanthe, please. I am only returning to you exactly what you have given me.

                  If you object to it when it is done to you, why do you continue to do it yourself?

                  • susanthe March 9, 2013 at 11:08 am #

                    It’s very odd that the FSP is presented as a benign, peaceful, freedom loving bunch, moving to NH to live happily ever after. If that were true, you Free Staters would all be proud to stand up and own your affiliation with the FSP. That you are ashamed to own it speaks volumes.

                    The reality of the FSP is that an intentional move by 20,000 armed people to invade, occupy, and dismantle the state government and then secede from the United States is not exactly benign.

                    That’s the FSP. The message is one thing, and the reality is entirely different.

      • Timothy Horrigan March 2, 2013 at 11:13 am #

        The organizational status of the Free State Project seems to vary from week to week. For a while, outsiders were being told that was no hierarchy— but right now, FSP President Carla Gericke just issued a pronouncement, and no one denied that there was a President (nor did anyone deny that she was the President.)

        • BobRobertson March 6, 2013 at 8:39 pm #

          Timothy, there is no hierarchy for or by people who sign up or move.

          Incorporation requires a board of directors and such, and in order to fulfill those legal requirements such a board and officers exists.

          It’s all there for anyone who wants to look. I’m sad only because people are asserting secrecy or misdirection where nothing of the sort exists.

          Why, I wonder, do people think they have to make stuff up? Isn’t simple disagreement enough?

          • susanthe March 7, 2013 at 12:17 pm #

            And that’s the unwitting truth. There is no hierarchy for the people who sign up or move. They’re the little libertarian lambs that allow the FSP to continue to claim to be a grassroots organization.

      • susanthe March 7, 2013 at 12:18 pm #

        Aren’t you saying downthread that there’s no hierarchy, o Natural Philosopher?

        • BobRobertson March 8, 2013 at 10:03 pm #

          Susanthe, I will repeat:

          “there is no hierarchy for or by people who sign up or move.

          “Incorporation requires a board of directors and such, and in order to fulfill those legal requirements such a board and officers exists.”

          If you can tell me what part of these two sentences you’re not understanding, I will try to clarify.

          • susanthe March 9, 2013 at 11:10 am #

            Oh, I get it, Bob. You’re not part of the hierarchy.

  5. Rep. Jim Splaine February 27, 2013 at 6:25 am #

    Seth, if our “misconceptions’ about the Free State Project are wrong and FSProjecteers are indeed concerned about more than just themselves, then you’ll have to change the FSP WEBSITE, which is all about themselves.

    Either that, or join another group — like the Democratic Party, which has a membership concerned about “community” and each other, and our future. Welcome!

  6. SgianDubh February 27, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

    I met a number of Free Staters on Primary Day last September and was surprised to learn that, while they vote here in New Hampshire, they retain their jobs and homes in the states they came from. One fellow even lives in his original state three weeks out of every month (and runs his business in that state) and comes to New Hampshire one week a month. Another fellow (who was running for State Rep) still has his vehicle licensed in New York.

    So my impression is that, many of the the folks who have already “moved” here could easily pick up and move back in a heartbeat.

    • BobRobertson February 28, 2013 at 6:53 pm #

      Fascinating. I didn’t know that.

      What an excellent reason to get behind that “Voter ID” law. Stop those vagrant FSPersons, whomever they may be.

  7. mevansnh February 27, 2013 at 4:34 pm #

    Rep. Mark Warden certainly gives one reason to question these TP/FSP types. I never knew that some people like being in abusive relationships. Imagine that. Wonder if that is true for all FSP members? We knew they were selfish, but this is really more than anyone might have expected.

    • BobRobertson March 6, 2013 at 8:41 pm #

      Having been in one, I can say from experience that I chose to stay in the relationship because I preferred what I had within it to what I would otherwise have without it.

      If you want to call that “like”, please do. I would have used the word “choose”.

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