Why I am a Libertarian

I’m rehashing an old subject, trying to update it for publishing in the Austin Liberator. As I pointed out in the recent blog post The Vote, I pulled the lever next to “L” again this year, just as I have for the last 10 plus years. I do this because I vote my conscience, rather than worry about wasting a vote.

The only wasted vote is the vote cast for a lessor evil, rather than being cast for a greater good. I vote and refer to myself as a Libertarian, and I do it with pride.


I am a libertarian because I believe in the concept of limited government. When I mention this fact to someone, I usually get the response “But you’re really a Republican, aren’t you?” Nothing could be further from the truth. I tolerate conservatives, but I’m not one of their kin.

Before I discovered the Nolan chart (http://www.theadvocates.org/quiz.html) and through it the LP, I was a staunch yellow dog Democrat, like my parents and grandparents before them. I believed that government was there to help, and that social freedoms could be taken for granted under the Democrat’s benign rule. However, I was at a loss to explain why the drug war persisted (with tacit Democrat support) or why the term “Politically Correct” was ever coined (by a Democrat) Even when the Democrat’s dominated the legislature and Democrats held the Presidency, social liberty never increased.

When the Republicans came to power, they talked of reducing the size and expense of government. My fellow Democrats cried over this, but I could not understand how reducing government, and the tax burdens on the people, was necessarily a ‘bad’ thing. Having more of my money to dispose of as I wished seemed like a good thing to me. Having less government interference in my life was one of my goals, as well. I thought I might have something in common with Republicans after all.

Strangely, the cost of government never got smaller, even when the Republicans dominated the legislatures, and a Republican held the Presidency. The Republicans did reduce taxes, but the debt burden passed on to the next generation of Americans went through the roof. I started to think that the politicians were not being truthful with us; and if they were lying to us about their intentions, then what else were they lying to us about?

When I was told “read my lips” and then watched taxes rise anyway; and when I heard “It depends on what the definition of is is” used as an excuse to cover the questionable activities of a president (activities that were the least egregious of the impeachable offenses that he could have been charged with) I began to see the truth that I know today: If a politician has words coming out of his mouth, he’s most likely lying.

I discovered something else in the course of nearly 30 years of following politics: Government is a weapon. It is a loaded gun that you point at wrong doers to make them stop what they are doing. That is the only ‘help’ that government can give; and it doesn’t even do that cheaply. If you want government to do something for you, then you are employing force to get it done.

Everything that government does can be done by private industry better, faster and cheaper. The fewer government run programs, the less force that is present in our system; less force means more freedom.

Jefferson, Adams and the others who founded this country understood this. The Democratic party (I was told) was the party of Jefferson. Because of this, I was a Democrat. What I did not realize was that the limited government principles of Jefferson and the founders were abandoned by the Democrats in the 1940 election; which brings us back to the Nolan chart, and the LP.

Chart the beliefs of the founders, and nearly to a man they will turn up Libertarian; Jefferson was solidly so. When I took the test, I too charted as solidly Libertarian. It has been more than 10 years since I took the test, lodging protest votes against the two major parties, discussing issues with fellow libertarians; and it’s been only recently that I have come to the realization that I was indeed a Libertarian in belief, and not just a political misfit.

Ask any libertarian why they are what they are, and you will get a different story. Some are former Republicans and some, like me, are former Democrats. Most of them are of the younger generation, fresh out of college and worried about the future they face at the hands of an ever-expanding federal government.

If there is a core libertarian belief, then this is a good portion of it; that government at least return to constitutional limits, and be responsive to the people who fund it. That force not be employed except in response to force. That we are all capable of governing ourselves, just as has been done throughout our history.

These were the beliefs of our nations founders; and because I claim these same principles as my own, I must be a libertarian.


I have revised my view several times since this piece was written; suffice it to say, I am no longer libertarian. I reject the label, and most of the philosophy behind the label.  The reasons for this are complex, and I haven’t quite worked it all out and written it down yet.  Still, I’m certain that Libertarians are aspiring to something that I see as dystopic in nature.  But that is another story, I hope I get around to writing it.

Loose Change: the Other Side of the Story

And speaking of conspiracy theories….

I’m regretting ever mentioning Loose Change in a previous blog post.

I should have realized that there was no evidence for 9/11’s of the claims made in the film. If you refer to one of the many sites that address the holes in the theories (Loose Change Guide, for example) it becomes quite embarrassing to have ever referred to the film in anything approaching a positive light.

…Which is not to say I endorse the gov’ts claims, either. Much like Pearl Harbor, it’s possible for the gov’t to have had no direct hand in the attacks themselves, while at the same time creating fertile ground for the attacks.


I have eaten a Big Bowl of Crow since publishing this and other thoughts on many subjects.  If you didn’t come here from this post, you probably should go check that one out before drawing any conclusions.

Who Killed the Electric Car?

Got into yet another discussion about alternative energy the other day, specifically concerning the movie Who Killed the Electric Car? (which I haven’t seen, but wouldn’t avoid seeing if I had the chance)

It wandered off that subject and onto the subject of Stan Meyer and water power.

The discussion jogged some of the old gray matter and I remembered a video I was sent a few months back demonstrating this guys technology http://hytechapps.com/aquygen/hhos so I decided to dig and see if they were the same person. They aren’t, but the tech seems similar.

I don’t know how real any of this is, but there is some good reading (for those who are interested) here: http://waterpoweredcar.com/stanmeyer.html and here: http://www.waterfuelcell.org/

For those interested in getting down to the brass tacks of the subject, go here: http://www.waterfuelcell.org/moreinfo.html

The video that was linked concerning Stan Meyer’s invention is more than 10 years old; which begs the question why we haven’t seen any further developments in the technology, if it is for real.

I’ll leave it to the conspiracy theorists to come up with the answers to that one.

Husband and Father

Two more words that, when I looked, didn’t have definitions that came close to describing the meaning of the word.

My dissatisfaction probably stems from the need to have the emotional weight (sometimes referred to as gravitas) of the name be communicated in the meaning.

A husband is more than just the male half of a marriage. A father is more than a sperm doner, less than god himself.

This rant is not finished. There will be more.

Gingrich Wasting His Time

Keith Olbermann has done it again, this time lambasting Newt Gingrich for trashing the first amendment in a bid to become the Republican’s next presidential nominee.

“I am not ‘running’ for president,” you told a reporter from Fortune Magazine. “I am seeking to create a movement to win the future by offering a series of solutions so compelling that if the American people say I have to be president, it will happen.”


Newt Gingrich sees in terrorism, not something to be exterminated, but something to be exploited.

MSNBC (via the Wayback Machine)

I hate to break it to this aptly named lizard of a man, but he’s wasting his time. In more ways than one.

He’s wasting his time because the average American, who acts like a bull in the china shop when it comes to demanding government programs, which trash the Constitution, on the one hand; will overwhelmingly reject any proposal that appears to limit their ability to obtain instant gratification, especially one that trashes the parts of the Constitution they want to keep. He might as well have cut his own throat, literally.

Talk about cluelessness when it comes to reading what’s in the wind.

He’s also wasting his time is because the most likely Republican Presidential nominee is someone from the President’s administration. Newt is so far out of favor with the President that I can’t even begin to imagine what sequence of events might end in his being nominated by his party; let alone elected to the presidency.

No, the most likely Republican nominee is still the youngest, highest ranking member of W’s cabinet. And that person is still Condoleeza Rice. Which makes it Rice Vs. Clinton in ’08.

You heard it here first.


Editor’s note, 2019. Hindsight. Hindsight makes so many things clearer. I remember wondering, as we moved in on the 2008 election, before the crash of 2008 which clinched the election for the Democrats, why Dr. Rice didn’t even try for the nomination. She was single-handedly the brightest light in the Bush II presidency. Why wasn’t she even considered as a candidate?

From the perspective of the 2016 election, it all becomes clear. Ah, she was black and she was a woman. In 2006 I hadn’t even heard of the Southern strategy. I didn’t know of Nixon’s betrayal of the historic stances of the GOP and his embracing of white nationalism as a winning strategy. It was the GOP reaction to Barack Obama’s (no-drama Obama) presidency that made me realize just how racist the average Republican really is.

The GOP would never nominate anyone from either of those categories, much less a member of both of them. At least, not before the majority of racist white nationalists that make up the current GOP are smashed in a few elections and they realize that their racism and misogyny really has become a liability that they can no longer afford.

That day cannot come soon enough for me.

ALD: The US Mint says “No Accounts for You”

Bernard von NotHaus revealed on FMNN’s eRadio last Friday that the US Mint has apparently taken action against NORFED behind the scenes as well as publicly.

To go along with the harassment that the Liberty Dollar and NORFED are enduring in the press, as well as the false accusations posted on the Mint’s website, Bernard revealed on the podcast posted Monday that the US Mint has acted to have bank accounts associated with NORFED and the Liberty Dollar closed, making it extremely hard for the American Liberty Dollar to conduct business.

This ratchets the battle between ALD and the US Mint up another notch.

Where it goes from here is anybodies guess. As Bernard states, CBS’ hatchet job on the subject suggests that it’s a crime even to possess ALD (it categorically is not a crime to own silver or ALD) much less use it. I’m quite certain that if they intended to arrest anyone for using ALD, they would have done so already.

Silver is up again today, once again going over 13 dollars an ounce, spot price. My suggestion is, buy silver.


Here’s the issue of Liberty Dollar News that discusses the latest developments. As an aside, the Associate of the month, Jon Roland, is a personal friend of mine. Wander by Constitution.org and check out the volumes of work that Jon has put in on the subject of liberty and the Constitution.

LIBERTY DOLLAR NEWS: November 2006 Vol. 8 No. 11

CALL TO ACTION:

Contact the media: Urge the media to report on the Liberty Dollar!

As you will read below, Mike Johnson has resigned, which is why I am back writing the news, your chronicle about the life and times of the Liberty Dollar. This issue is yet another blockbuster with shocking news and developments that nobody considered possible. It is also a call to action for individuals and organizations that support the ideals that the Liberty Dollar symbolizes. I urge you to not only read this Newsletter but I also urge you to contact the newspapers, publications, and organizations that you respect to report on the Liberty Dollar. Very quickly, we need to build a broader base to take action in support of the Liberty Dollar. Without meaningful action the Liberty Dollar could become extinct in a short period of time…

IMPORTANT…THIS JUST IN: Help… a few self-described experts, working through Wikipedia, are at it again. This time they’ve added a Pros and Cons section on the Liberty Dollar. While this Wikipedia article is more accurate than earlier versions, it still needs to be updated. Please take a moment and post a quick comment (hopefully to the “Pro” section!) at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberty_Dollar#Pros_.26_Cons_of_Liberty_Dollars.

Thank you for your continued support, one dollar at a time. Now the BIG news…[/size]

WAIT: I forgot to mention the upcoming Liberty Dollar University-12 in San Jose from January 10 – 13. If you want to find out what is going on and influence the direction of the Liberty Dollar… you have to come to LDU-12! Call the office now for a reservation.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

  1. Liberty Dollar Faces Extinction
  2. Mike Johnson Resigns
  3. Treasury Letters
  4. Bernard’s “Second Law of Money”
  5. New Vanity Number: 888.LIB.DOLLAR
  6. Hawaii Dala Announced
  7. Signs and Shirts by Jeff
  8. Letter / Article to the Editor
  9. Success Story / Incident of the Month
  10. Question of the Month
  11. Liberty Associate of the Month
  12. Quote of the Month

1. Liberty Dollar Faces Extinction

The Liberty Dollar is now under attack from… our bank. On Monday, November 20, the Evansville office received a certified letter from our bank, Old National Bank, which said: “Please be advised that if you do not close the Account within 15 days of the date of this letter (11.16.06), Old National
Bank will exercise its right to close the Account.”

Had we bounced checks? Nope, not a one. Were we a difficult customer? Definitely not. Had we done anything to warrant the bank to close our account? No, but obviously something upset the banking powers to be. The VP for Bank Security, who ordered the letter, told us that they had investigated our business and said that the “nature of our business” was too risky for them. Of course the bank’s action is clearly the result of someone calling the bank and telling them to close our account. Probably the same person who told the US Mint to issue their warning. The same person who told CBS Lies (not worthy of “News”) to do their dirty work. The same person who urged the Washington Post to write their propaganda to kill the Liberty Dollar idea. The same morally corrupt person who might even be reading this Newsletter.

The Liberty Dollar is clearly under siege. Quite simply, without a bank account and merchant card services, it is all but impossible to do business in this day and age. We face the real possibility that the Liberty Dollar could die… and put all the ideals it stands for at risk! A very sobering thought I dare say.

Does this alarm you? I hope! It should alarm you that the government can single out a business without any past criminal history, indictment, or even criminal intent and instruct its bank to close its account! As you can note in Article #3 below, the US Mint does acknowledge that the gold and silver paper certificates are 100% legal. So if one form of the Liberty Dollar currency is legal, what’s wrong with the gold and silver that backs it up? I hope this latest bank development signals you that we need to find a much broader base of support for the Liberty Dollar. It should alarm you enough to take action. I am urging you to contact your newspaper, the organizations you respect, publications you subscribe to, and any public forums to investigate and report on the Liberty Dollar. We need to develop more awareness about the Liberty Dollar, and we need to do it very quickly. Up to this point the silence from our side regarding the government’s attack on the Liberty Dollar has been deafening. That needs to be corrected.

2. Mike Johnson Resigns

It is with shock and disappointment that I must inform you that Mike Johnson has resigned, telling me he was too “concerned” to be the Executive Director. So now I have to add “courage” to my list of requirements for an Executive Director. Of course this experience cost us a lot of money as we invested in Mike with the idea that he would generate more volume, but that was not the case. In fact, we have very little for his 2-1/2 months on the job. We wish Mike well and are now accepting applications for a new “courageous” Executive Director, please.

3. Treasury Letters

The bank action and Mike’s departure is not all… “threatening” letters have been received via certified mail by all the RCOs and myself from Daniel P. Shaver, chief counsel for the US Mint. The “Treasury Letter” re-hashed the Mint’s warning and informed all of us that the Department of Justice has determined that the Liberty Dollar is illegal as per 18 USC Section 486. Of course, that is grossly erroneous as 486 only pertains to passing or uttering an item of gold or silver as government “coin” “legal tender” or “current money.” The Liberty Dollar has never been passed or uttered as government money and they should know that, hence the use of the propaganda machine to extinguish the Liberty Dollar. I think the government is afraid to take the Liberty Dollar to court because they know the law and know that they cannot get a conviction.

We also received a copy of a two-page letter in reply to Congressman Hostettler’s inquiry to the US
Mint. This “Treasury Letter” signed by none other than Mr. Edmund C. Moy, the new Director of the US Mint, simply re-hashed the Mint’s original warning with a twist. To Mr. Moy’s credit, he acknowledged that, “…paper gold and silver certificates do not appear to be covered by this proscription [486].” Thank you, Mr. Moy, now if you would just please read 486, you would discover that it only applies to counterfeiting and does not apply to the privately issued Gold and Silver Libertys. And as a further extension, 486 does not apply to digital currencies like eLibertyDollar.com, GoldMoney.com or e-gold.com. For a thorough review of 486 and why it does not apply to the Liberty Dollar, please read our Disclaimer(s) and David Rostcheck’s 42-page report at:
http://www.libertydollar.org/ld/faqs/disclaimer.htm.

4. Bernard’s “Second Law of Money”

All this propaganda, Mike’s departure, Treasury Letters, and banking problems have given rise to Bernard’s Second Law of Money: “Any government action that purports to prohibit an American citizen from using a piece of gold or silver (or, for that matter, anything) in voluntary barter transactions between consulting adults is preposterous, antagonistic to a free market, and totally without legal merit.”

The bottom line is that we are not deterred. Like the old German saying, “That which does not kill
you – makes you stronger,” the Liberty Dollar is not going away. What else am I to do? Return to lying on the beach in Hawaii and drinking Mai Tais all day? Well, that may not be so bad… but I still feel the country is worth saving from the evils of fiat government money and hope you still agree. Right now the Liberty Dollar needs your help! Where are the patriotic organizations on this issue? Where are the great free market economists of our time? Where is academia? Where are the churches on the issue of honest weights and measures? Where is the community that supports individual rights? Where is the hard money community? Where is the gold and silver community? Where is the Mogambo Guru when we really need him?!

I strongly feel that this is the time that we must take a stand; otherwise the government may be emboldened to move against gold and silver and damn us to their depreciating money until it is too late for our country – and the ideals it once stood for – to survive. I remain steadfastfully optimistic that all this will turn out to be an opportunity as yet unseen…. if you take a stand for the right to use gold and silver as money. Again, I strongly urge you to contact your newspapers, organizations, publications, post to email lists, and any forums and urge them to investigate and report on the Liberty Dollar. We need to get the Liberty Dollar published. We need to develop much more awareness about the Liberty Dollar and we need to do it very quickly. Please take action. Do something!

5. New Vanity Number: 888.LIB.DOLLAR

Seems like no shortage of problems this past month. Even renting our vanity phone number 800.NEW.DOLLAR became a problem. So we bought our own number: 888.LIB.DOLLAR. Please change the number on your site or wherever it is used to the new number. And God help anyone who rents the old number… as it is on thousands of Silver Libertys and they are not going to change any time soon. The 888.421.6181 on all the paper currency is still working… and the local number: 812.473.5250 is also working. [/size]

6. Hawaii Dala Announced

So what do I do in my spare time? Recently when I had a couple of days, I went to Hawaii for the weekend and launched a Hawaiian version of the Liberty Dollar.

Announcing the new 2007 Hawaii Dala featuring King Kamehameha on the obverse with a Face Value of $20 so if you are inclined, you can actually use it as voluntary kala because one Hawaiian Dala is equal to one US dollar. Check out the photos:
http://www.libertydollar.org/press-kit/images/fullsize/2007HawaiiDalaKamObv.jpg
http://www.libertydollar.org/press-kit/images/fullsize/2007HawaiiDalaRev.jpg

What is to come? A lot! The six historic mega designs I did for the 30th anniversary for the old Royal Hawaiian Mint in 2004 will be issued in three sizes for a total of 18 issues. One design per size per month. The six designs are: Kamehameha, Liliuokalani, Kalakaua, Kaiulani, Warrior, and Discovers. The three sizes at the current $20 Silver Base will be: one ounce $20 Hawaii Dala, a half ounce $10 Hapalua Dala, and a quarter ounce $5 Hapaha Dala. All in .999 fine silver. [/size]

In addition to each of these 18 silver Dala issues, a minimum of 100 of each issue will be hallmarked with a micro hand stamp with the outline of the Hawaiian Island to denote First Day of Issue. And an additional minimum of 100 will also be hand numbered 001 to 100 with the FDI hallmark. Both of these Limited Issues will be available at a premium to Face Value and market priced.

If you wish to order a hallmarked or numbered Hawaii Dala, please contact me directly via email.

7. Signs and Shirts by Jeff

A lot of people have done a lot of development for the Liberty Dollar. But none have more than the
amazing Jeff Kotchounian our favorite RCO in Michigan. Here is a list of the 12″ X 18″ Liberty Dollar signs made with HammerMill 100 lb paper, Laminated with 5 mil plastic. There are one sided and two sided signs.

  1. Sign with “Toll Free Number” at the bottom. $2.00 each
  2. Sign with “Available Here” at the bottom. $2.00 each
  3. Sign with “Accepted Here!” at the bottom. $2.00 each
  4. Sign with “Accepted Here!” on both sides. $3.00 each
  5. Sign with “Accepted Here!” on one side AND the Toll Free Number on the other. $3.00 Please note that the new signs have the 2006 dated Gold Liberty.

Jeff can put gromments on the signs for .25 each and has suction cups to hang the signs from the grommets for .40 each. Jeff also has a ton of t-shirts, long sleeve shirts, mouse pads, Liberty Dollar holders, signs, banners and many other custom Liberty Dollar items. I encourage you to visit his web site at: http://www.chooney.com/liberty/productpage.html
and contact him via email at chooney@cardina.net.

8. Letter / Article to the Editor

I am deeply indebted to Kevin Innes, our notable RCO in Asheville and RCO Executive Committee member for this reminder about FEAR.

Fear is also a Weapon

This is a period in human history when, once again, public perception of reality is manipulated. The acronym: “F.E.A.R: False Evidence Appearing Real” is a useful reminder to check yourself in case fear wells up inside you. Those in power are very adept at using fear to keep us all in check and NOT do the things that need to be done to pull us out of this morass.

Information is exaggerated, distorted, concocted and processed for maximum effect: domination and profit. Each of us has a choice to either succumb or rise about those fears. Which do you choose? Controlling the flow and intensity of information/misinformation about what new fear we should have is the main weapon of those who want power over you. Yes, there are horrible things happening to many people around the world and in your neighborhood but what about the countless acts of courage, generosity and care expressed by countless people and movements that are igniting people to action as a result and doing the work that is inspiring countless others to take action for our planet? We don’t hear about that, as much do we? When what you fear is confronted with both feet on the ground – face to face – in broad daylight – you realize the folly of that emotion. It is self-destructive! You realize that Fear inhibits the taking of actions that would allay that fear, for example, to find out if the facts are even accurate; to find out if the power that threatens you is fearful itself. You will find out that the indomitable spirit within you is more powerful than that which you (used to) fear.

The ability to create anything but 100% backed money is at the very core of their power. Now is the time to be bolder and smarter in our actions to establish integrity in the financial arena. It is time to shake off the shackles of self-doubt and come forward, with all our little imperfections, and be brutally honest with ourselves and with others and admit that we don’t have all the answers but we have the
will to keep working tirelessly and in a united way to develop better solutions for a better future. Great leaders have the humility to admit and learn from their mistakes and move forward – hopefully a little wiser and more effective. The Liberty Dollar is a great opportunity for you to establish yourself as the great person you intended to be in this brief period that you have walked this planet. So onwards – without F.E.A.R! It’s a great time to be alive!

Kevin Innes/RCO can be reached at
kevin@ashevillelibertydollar.com

Please send in your letter or comments
for publication to: info@libertydollar.org

9. Success Story / Incident of the Month

There are no incidents to report so we have this great Success Story:

Dear Liberty Dollar…

First we went to Wal-Mart…

We just received our Associate Kit with our first Liberty Dollars, and we set out today to spend them
locally. We had $40.00 in Liberty Certificates, and two $20.00 Silver Libertys. First we went to Wal-Mart, and made a purchase for $47.75. I gave the young, male checker $40.00 in Liberty Certificates, and $7.75 in Federal Reserve Notes. He looked at the Liberty Certificates and asked if they were traveler’s checks. I replied, “No, they are Libertys.” He said “Do I need to check something?” and I said, “What would you like to check?” He went to check with a manager. He was gone a long time! The line of shoppers behind us got longer while we waited. We watched him show the certificates to a CSM (the first line of management), and then the CSM went to the Customer Service counter. We were wondering if they were calling the police!

Finally, a CSM came to get our cart, and took us to the Customer Service counter. Four women cashiers had gathered there, and a male Assistant Manager. The women all said they had never seen them before, exclaimed how pretty the certificates were and asked us where we got them (I said we got them from NORFED, and the web address is on the certificate). The man was digging in his wallet for $40.00. He hadn’t said a word to us. He gave the cashier $40.00 in Frauds and he took the Silver Certificates. The cashier told me that he wanted them to give to his grandchildren.

Then my husband Alex took a $20 Silver Liberty out of his pocket and dropped it on the counter where the silver rang out. He said to the Assistant Manager, “Maybe you would rather have silver.” The guy’s eyes bugged out! He said he would be right back. We think he went to borrow $20 from a friend! He came back and bought the $20 Liberty from us. We then explained to him what it was all about, and told him how he could be an Associate and make money like we just did. Alex also explained how Wal-mart could make a profit with Libertys if they signed up to be a Liberty Merchant. He took our brochure (with our contact information on it) and said he would check it out. One of the cashiers asked for NORFED’s phone number (we gave her a business card) in case Wal-Mart gets more Libertys.

We then went to the health food store where we spent $20.27. I did the drop and gave the young checker our last $20 Silver Liberty and waited. The owner of the store was 10 feet away, helping another customer. The young woman looked at it, hesitated just a moment, and said, “Where is the
27 cents?” I fumbled and gave it to her, and we left without saying anything to the owner. We shop there often so as soon as our next order of Libertys arrives in about a week, we’ll go back to the store and talk to the health food storeowner about becoming a Liberty Merchant.[/size]

My heart was pounding a little at first, but we had a great, fun time and can’t wait to go shopping with Libertys again![/size]

Alex and Jan Salsbery
Susanville Liberty Associate

10. Question of the Month

QUESTION: I have been all through your site… and I see that the government has said that the Liberty Dollar is legal many times. Why have they changed their tune?

ANSWER: Good question! Some people think it was because of our “in your face” Press Conference on August 9, right in front of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in Lower Manhattan. Other people think it was just the fact that we have grown big enough to be noticed. And still others think it is because the gold and silver market is getting ready to blast off and the government may want to try and control it…. and can’t with people using Liberty Dollar free and easy as it is now. “Why” is anybody’s guess. The main point is that why does not matter. What matters most is that the Liberty Dollar IS legal and you should exercise your right to protect your money as best you can… and
certainly the Liberty Dollar is ideal because you can get it at a discount and use it at a profit… so you can grow your money back to total value… just like it could happen for the country at large.

11. Liberty Associate of the Month

What the hell are you?! Maybe you are a Republican? If so, wake up! As we are a long way from any
“Republican” ideal. How about a Democrat? No difference for the well informed, as it is common knowledge that both organizations are controlled by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Hence the saying that it does not matter who you vote for – you get the same old government. Frankly, I would not be one of these damn titles if my life depended on it. And ditto for our very noteworthy Liberty Associate of the Month. Since way back to September 12, 1995, around the time of the birth of the popular Internet, this outstanding Associate has been preaching “Constitutionalism.” And I could not agree with him more. For that reason and a thousand more reasons, like he has a Liberty Dollar banner and link on his home page (as hopefully we all do), I am very proud to acknowledge Jon Roland as the Liberty Associate of the Month.

Jon defines “constitutionalism” as a commitment to strict enforcement of a written constitution of government as it was originally understood by its framers and ratifiers, then its opposite is the doctrine and practice of “legal realism,” which holds that the “law” is whatever judges do or can be expected to do, whose main tenet is the doctrine of stare decisis as presently practiced, and which is fundamentally in conflict with adherence to a written constitution.[/size]

Over 1,000 web sites from around the world (sites like George Mason University and the US Department of State) currently link to Jon’s web site: www.constitution.org.
And when I visited it recently there had been over 1.6 MILLION unique visitors! Please support Jon’s effort. Visit his site and send some eLibertyDollars to jon.roland@constitution.org.

Congratulations Jon! It is wonderfully good Americans like you who make the Liberty Dollar great. Thank you for helping return America to value – one dollar at a time.

12. Quote of the Month

“Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of Liberty.” Thomas Jefferson

Closing Remarks:

As we edge up to 2007, I wonder what the New Year will bring? 2006 has certainly been a hell of a year. As many of us know, it has not been a simple task to introduce a new value based currency and save America before its debt-ridden economy self-destructs. I am sure there some amazing things to come and will hopefully provide yet unseen opportunity.

Many thanks to all the Liberty Associates, Merchants, and RCOs for your continued support. For it is only by banding together and adopting a free and independent currency which provides us with “just weights and measures” will we be able to throw off the yoke of a manipulated monetary system and generate a peaceful and prosperous society.

Thank you again for all your efforts to return America to value – one dollar at a time!

And last but certainly not least, I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas!

Bernard von NotHaus
Monetary Architect/Editor
www.LibertyDollar.org
888.LIB.DOLLAR
888.421.6181



“May you live in interesting times” to quote the ancient curse. I think we’ve found ourselves in the midst of some interesting times here.

Lapsed Trekkie Still Angry About B5 Laserdiscs

I’m currently a lapsed Trekkie, I guess. I don’t have copies of any of the Episodes of any Star Trek Series, in any format, other than the mpg’s that I’m pulling off the air on both The CW Austin and TV Land.

We sold the few laserdisc copies of episodes at the Las Vegas convention The Wife went to. I think she got 25 bucks for the first season of Star Trek and all of the Babylon 5 disks that were made. Compare that to the much larger amount that we spent obtaining those disks, and you begin to understand the disgust I feel right now. C’est la vie.

I’m waiting for everyone to sell off their old copies of the Star Trek DVD’s so that I can get a copy of my own on the cheap.


The fact that I don’t own a copy of Star Trek in any format can be blamed directly on my experiences with attempting to collect a more recent series, Babylon 5. I had a few choice words for Warner Brothers over that debacle.

To Whom it May Concern:

I noticed that the B5 episodes are coming out on DVD. I’d like to state, for the record: I love B5, it is one of the best SF shows ever to see broadcast. I would also like to state, for the record: I will not be buying the DVD’s until season 3 is available due to previous experiences with Warner Bros. and video releases of B5.

We were told, when the laserdisk format episodes were released, that all the episodes would be available in that format, that there wasn’t going to be a release on DVD (I believe they said ‘ever’), and that the widescreen formats DID NOT EXIST (even though we had been assured by those who worked on the production that the shooting was done that way). This was all told to us by representatives of WB.

My wife and I foolishly, in hindsight, bought LD’s as they came out, instead of waiting for them all to be available. WB only released seasons 1 & 5, half of 2, and half of 4. None of 3 ever saw LD format. If you add it up, 40 bucks a disk, 12-14 disks a season, that comes to about $1700 that was wasted on those disks, which are worthless now; worthless, not because the format is dead (I generally watch a laserdisk at least two times a week) but because the series is incomplete, and is missing THE BEST EPISODES.

Time pases, SciFi shows the episodes, and low and behold, the widescreen versions do indeed exist. Now they are releasing the ‘entire series’ again, this time on DVD’s, one season at a time.

As the saying goes “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” I’ll wait for the episodes I need to make a complete set. I’ll be glad to make a even trade with WB, episode for episode, for all of the B5 that I already own on LD format. From where I’m sitting, ya’ll would be getting quite a bargain…

Sincerely,
-R.Anthony Steele

“You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.”
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


I own the Babylon 5 DVD’s, because they were all released in that format. The funds wasted on the Laserdisks have left a sour taste in my mouth when it comes to attempting to collect other television programs in any format.

Just when I was ready to spring for Star Trek DVD’s, the remastered versions show up, as well as the newly conceived format of HD-DVD. And I get that feeling that I’ve wasted money…

One…

More…

Time…

So, once again, I’m not buying anything else media related until I know what the eventual result of the format wars will be. When ya’ll (the bigwhigs in the media conglomerations) figure out which end is up, let the rest of us know, will you? Until then, I’m duping on-air copies of programs and burning them to disk myself.

Of course, they could offer to upgrade previously purchased media to the new format (as I suggested they do with the B5 Laserdisks) but I’m sure they don’t see any reason to cut into their profits and offer to make good on their take on intellectual property rights (as in I don’t have the right to duplicate my purchased copies of their intellectual property for my own use)
and guarantee that the average user (me) doesn’t need to duplicate their copy protected material in order to keep using our purchased copies.

Consequently, I don’t see any need to run out and line their pockets with money that I can ill afford to spend right now, purchasing copies of media that will be defunct and in need of replacement a few years down the road.

The cost of digital cable and blank DVD media is a bargain in comparison.

Home is Where the Heart Is

A story about the old home town, on Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving was my favorite holiday when I was growing up. I called a small town in Western Kansas home for most of my childhood years and Leoti, Kansas still occupies a special place in my memories even though it may not be home now. I lived in Leoti for eleven of my first fourteen years. Now that the grandparents have passed and dad has moved to Colorado (and also passed) I have a hard time thinking of Leoti as home anymore. But I know every square inch of the place intimately.

A small town is a great thing when you are a child. You can ride your bike in the street with little or no concern for car traffic. Amber Gribbon lived in the house facing the main highway, directly across the alleyway from our house. Amber is the only person I know who was struck by a car in the 11 years that I lived in Leoti. She had just been given a brand new pair of sneakers for her birthday, and she thought she could run faster than a car after putting them on. She was quite unhappy to find out that she couldn’t. Not as unhappy as the driver she ran out in front of. That was probably his worst day, a nightmare come true for any driver. She enjoyed showing us her cast and telling us the story, but she seemed no worse for wear even with the cast.

In a small town, everybody knows you. More importantly, everyone knows who your parents are, so you know that everything you do will probably get back to them. Nearly everything worth doing is within easy walking distance so there is no need to drive, at least not with any sort of a hurry required.

My paternal grandparents lived 7 blocks away, just past the old City Park. I always think of that direction as North. I don’t know why. I know full well that Tribune is a half-hour drive down the road in that direction, and that the Rocky mountains are visible not too far West from Tribune. That direction has to be West, not North. But in my head Grandma was North of our house. When I think of directions in relation to home as it was then, I have always gotten the directions shifted by 90°. The front of our house faced Grandma’s house, and that way was North in my head. Maybe it’s the wanderers desire to go where the sun goes that makes me think of that direction as the direction to go, or maybe it was that I felt safe at Grandma’s house. I’ll probably never know.

Hyland’s Map

Our family had lived in the area for several generations by that point. Our Grandfather’s uncle had bequeathed his property to the state (after his only son died) for the purpose of turning it into a state park. It still is a state park, (Kansas Travel) featuring one of the few natural springs in the area. I still have the map Grandpa drew for me showing how the homestead was laid out. He once told me the story of how the orginal dam was made of wood, a palisades dam as he described it, not the concrete dam you can see there now. One spring brought heavier than average rains and, as he told the story,

We watched the wave of water advance on the dam from the top of the nearby hill. the water covered the dam and went over it. When the flood passed where the dam had been, there was no remaining evidence that the dam (and our work) had ever been there. The ground was scraped clean.

Steele homestead, Scott State Park

The only other story of working with his uncle that I can recall him telling was when the university types began to take interest in the indian artifacts that they found when grandpa and his uncle were out working the fields. The guy nearly had a stroke and then a whole bunch more of them showed up and started digging around in the dirt looking for more useless stuff. I think that was my first introduction to the field of archeology. I’ve remained fascinated with useless stuff ever since.

There were (and still are) at least a hundred Steele relatives in the immediate area of Wichita, Scott and Saline counties, and about that many Heims (Grandmother’s family) as well, so a family gathering was a massive affair, something to really look forward to. Grandmother loved Thanksgiving. She loved to cook, and there would be pies galore. Pies made from the sour cherry trees she and Hyland cultivated on the backside of their property, pies that were baking a week in advance in preparation for the family event. Everybody brought a dish of their own, in addition to the massive turkey that would be cooking in the old gas oven at Grandma’s house.

You never knew who would show up for the event from year to year. The same old regulars would generally be there; Uncle Jake, Edna and Ted, Uncle Russ. But there also seemed to be a varying cast of additional characters that you never really got to know, but you knew were related somehow. They’d explain it to you if you asked, but I could never keep it all straight.

Dorothy, Evey and Edna. At least, I think that is Edna with her back to the camera.

A little after noon the feast would commence, and it didn’t stop for the rest of the day. After the initial round, the adults would break into groups and play cards or watch the football game, with the occasional return to grandmothers massive cherry banquet table, just to make sure that you were indeed no longer hungry. The children would go out and play in the croquet court that was Grandad’s pride and joy. It had poured concrete curbs and the bare earth could be leveled flat by an enormous angle-iron drag that I towed by hand around the court more times than I care to mention. The children could also just wander around town if they liked. The yard had no fence having once been just the verge of the fields that grandfather owned, fields now sold off to neighbors for their houses to be built on. Everyone knew Hyland and Hyland knew all of them. It was a very relaxed affair.

I can remember those times as clearly as if I was sitting in the old house right now. I cast myself back and I can picture the polished wooden floors in the kitchen. Floors inset with a dual light colored band that we used to mark off our kid-sized bowling lane until someone wanted to watch the television. To the right would have been the kitchen proper with it’s breakfast bar jutting into the room and high stools to prop yourself up on so you could chat while Grandma cooked. If you went to the left down the hallway you’d come out in the breezeway after taking a left at the washing machine, and if you went around the garage that was right in front of you there would be the double line of cherry trees. To the right was the back of the Methodist church were Grandpa sang every Sunday. If you followed the road past the church you would be facing the old Leoti High School (now the elementary school) on one corner, and on the other facing corner there was an A&W drive-in that tried to compete with the Dairy King that was on the other end of town. Dairy King is still there. It’s better situated, being right across from the fairgrounds and the softball/baseball diamonds.

The town has changed from what I remember. It has changed and yet it is still exactly the same in some fundamental ways. A friend of mine who worked for Broadwing (a fiber optic cabling company) had a tire blowout while she was on the road a few years back. It was Sunday and she needed to be somewhere else, but she wasn’t going anywhere until her car was fixed. She had taken a room at the only motel in the little town she was in and called me to pass the time since there was nothing else to do there. She remembered me mentioning that I had grown up in Kansas and wanted commiserate with me on how flat and boring Kansas was. I asked her where she was. She said “Leoti”.

I told her to hang on, and I made a call to my uncle Frank. Uncle Frank was Dad’s best friend and owned the gas station directly across the street from my Dad’s (Grandad’s before him) filling station in Leoti. Between them they owned the only two fueling spots in the entire county when I lived there. While I hadn’t spoken to Frank in several years, I knew he would remember me. Sure enough, we dropped right back into old times, and as soon as I mentioned my friend’s problems, he said not to worry about it.

My friend called me in amazement a few minutes later. “How did you do that? Every place in town is closed, I checked.” Two guys showed up with a tow truck, took the car down the road to the service station, and got it back on the road in a few hours. This happened on a Sunday in rural Kansas, where nothing gets done on Sunday. I just called an old friend, I said. Someone I really should have talked to more frequently.

Where the wart is now.

I have visited Leoti since then and I didn’t like the changes much. Frank’s son had inherited the family business and had to compete with a convenience store that they had built just off the town square. They knocked down what I remembered as a ginormous brick building, the home of Jaeger Implement for all of my memory, and erected a split faced concrete block and painted steel wart, right in the center of town. Well, the wart of a convenience store is directly across the street from what was the slab of the first grocery store in town, never rebuilt after the fire that gutted it, with what I always remembered as the State Farm insurance offices built on the back half the corner with brick tables and benches taking up the other half. The bank building on the opposite corner never was a bank in my memory even though everything about it said bank other than the occupant who lived there.

The store facing the wart across 4th street was the Three Way department store. It had a basement that mom lost me in once. I went exploring while she was shopping, and she nearly had a heart attack looking for me before I got bored and wandered back upstairs. It’s a True Value Hardware now, according to Google. The hardware store was the store further down the block. It had dusty, unfinished wooden floors and a narrow aisle that went front to back and exited on the alleyway at the back. A few doors down was the newspaper offices, right next to Pepper’s IGA, which was built as the only movie theater in Leoti way back before I was born. It was Pepper’s IGA when I tried my hand at shoplifting as a child. I had to go back in with my backside smarting to pay the cashier for the candy that I stole. I never did that again, but the shopkeepers never forgot it. They were always chasing me out of the stores when they would catch me reading comic books on the floor like it was my living room. All of town was my living room, from where I saw it.

What became Pepper’s IGA

The place where Peppers was is now an empty, grass-covered lot. The building that had been a theater and was later the IGA burned down a few years after my one childhood criminal act. It burned down like so many of Peppers’ businesses did before he was cordially invited to leave town. Next to that was the courthouse and the library, my home away from home. I could lay on the floor and read all day there and no one would chase me out for doing it, either. I still get nostalgic walking into a library. The smell of books always brings that feeling back.

The tavern is still the second building behind the insurance office across Broadway from the wart (Sinclair? In Kansas? Since when?) right where I remember it being. I remember it being there because of the many times Grandpa would drive us downtown on errands to buy groceries for Grandma. He’d always have to stop in and shoot a snooker game with the boys along the way. Further down Fourth Street in that direction was the Post Office and the barbershop, before you ran into the old fire station (now the Museum of the Great Plains) if you take a right there and go two blocks you will hit the elementary school that I attended.

Across the street from the tavern, the Post Office and the terrifying barbershop was the Rexall drug store and the Ben Franklin’s five and dime thrift store. I always get the location for that drug store mixed up because the druggist (pharmacist) lived on the other end of Fourth Street, two houses closer to the library than our cross street was. Seven blocks from home to school, and I walked that distance every day that there wasn’t snow on the ground, sometimes even then. When I got my first bike and was liberated from walking everywhere, I rode all over town, exploring every street.

I could even ride across the railroad tracks, an ominous barrier a full two blocks further over from the school, that I only dared to cross once prior to that, and I did it in order to speak to the girl I was sweet on when I was about ten or twelve. I remember that incident because a kid named Ray lived near her. He hated me and I knew he could run faster than me. But I got away scott free that day. Liberated on my bicycle I could even ride to my friend Mitch’s house, a full three or four blocks farther North on Fourth Street from the railroad tracks. Why, that was nearly out of town!

On the other end of Fourth Street, on the South edge of town, was the Catholic church where I went to see what Catholicism was all about with my aunt Betty and Uncle Clem. They moved into town the last few years that I lived in Leoti, and they built a house on the corner that lead back towards the swimming pool, one block down Fourth Street from where the Wichita County hospital was at the time. The city offices now sit where the hospital was, caddy-corner across the alleyway from my old house, and the hospital is now two blocks further back from Fourth on the other side of the street, next to what we baldly proclaimed as the Old Folks Home back in the day. We could see the building every day that we were swimming during the summer since it was across the county park from the pool.

I remember the Old Folks Home because that was were they put Grandma after she started showing signs of Alzheimer‘s. The year we went back for Thanksgiving and the Wife made Dad take his cigarettes outside to smoke. Grandma thanked her for that. “I hate the way those things smell.” Dad comically shivered and looked mournful out on the porch all by himself. That was the year that the Daughter got to meet her great grandmother. The last time we all got together and laughed as a family. The last real Thanksgiving, in my estimation.

Grandma died in 2000, eighteen years after the love of her life, Hyland. His former filling station is now a bare concrete slab. One of the eight different businesses that he ran during his long lifetime in Leoti Kansas. When Grandpa saw something that needed doing, he’d figure out a way to get a business started that could do it. If the business didn’t make money or was too much work, he’d sell it. If it did make money and he liked doing the work, he’d keep it. His house was bought by the town mayor after Grandma no longer needed it. The mayor painted the house grey and took out the raised flower bed outside the living room picture window that was Grandma’s pride and joy. All of the cherry trees have died and grass grows where they and the croquet court used to be. Time changes everything.

Kansas, it’s a great place to be from. Home is someplace else now. Thanksgivings are just not the same anymore. The cherry pies are sweeter and they don’t have that sour bite that Grandma’s pies had. When you have to do the cooking, and you hate cooking like I do, Thanksgiving becomes a chore that you’d just as soon not engage in. Chores like putting up and taking down decorations that no one notices in the big city. They don’t look unless your entire neighborhood loses its mind and lights the entire street and all the trees. Then they show up and they never stop coming until you take the lights back down again. Traffic snarled for blocks in all directions so badly that you can’t even get home to enjoy the holiday. Who wants that?

Grandpa hosted the nativity scene for the Methodist church on his front lawn every year. He had life-sized statues with bales of hay around the animals, and strings of multicolored lights hung on all the eves of the house. We’d go out and help him set up the display not too long after the Thanksgiving feast was over. We never had anyone come by to gawk that I can remember, certainly not enough of them that we couldn’t get into the house when we wanted. But he went through the labor every year, just like Grandma did for Thanksgiving. I never understood it, but I always did appreciate it. A memory to be thankful for on Thanksgiving. May yours be a happy one.


Editor’s note, 2019. Wayback Machine archive from 2012 showing the original article. It’s longer and reads better, but essentially the same. You be the judge.

How About an Example of a Bad Show?

OK, so I like the new BSG and the re-mastered classic Star Trek. Does that mean I have no taste? That I will buy anything the studios throw out? Not really, no. The last two incarnations of Star Trek that Paramount produced were so bad I didn’t watch one of them, and I wish I hadn’t watched the other. I sat out the last three seasons of Voyager, not because the show had lost all contact with the characters that had started in the series (it had. What was Neelix still doing on the ship without the love of his life?) but because it offended my sensibilities that Paramount would use Star Trek fans to browbeat the local broadcasters into carrying their failing channel UPN. The show wasn’t available in the Austin market for about a year because we didn’t have a local carrier for UPN, and when one finally showed up, I had already decided to sit out the remainder of the program.

Truth in advertising.

I also sat out the first three seasons of Enterprise. Enterprise was so flawed in conceptualization that I couldn’t even watch the show, although I tried watching the premiere. I just couldn’t suspend disbelief. Basically, it comes down to the established fact that there were no Vulcans in Starfleet before Spock. Every time the boob babe flounced on screen in Enterprise, I was thrown right out of believing the show. Combine that with the fact that I couldn’t stand Scott Bakula even when he was on Quantum Leap, and you’ve got a show that I can’t watch and enjoy.

There were two episodes of the last season (I tuned in to watch Brent Spiner open season four, stayed for the end of the season) that I actually could sit back and enjoy. They were the two part In a Mirror, Darkly (a prequel to Mirror, Mirror) which could be viewed as canon because the existence of Vulcans on the ship was explained, and they were watchable because Bakula made a very convincing bad guy.

Overall Enterprise was a show I didn’t watch, and didn’t mind missing.

I wish I had missed the movie Nemesis, I want my money back for that film. It wasn’t just bad Trek (which I had grown used to) it was bad cinema. I don’t know how it ranks a 6.5 at IMDB. I give it about a 3, which it gets for stunningly expensive special effects alone. The storyline gets it about a 1. Completely unbelievable, with a dune buggy thrown into the middle of it just to add insult to injury (Gene never allowed wheeled vehicles on the show. It was one of the ways that he separated the Star Trek universe from today’s world. They had grown beyond the use of the wheel) and yet another Data clone (how many versions of his android did Dr. Soong make and throw away before he made Data anyway? Just a bit casual with his creations, isn’t he? Leaving them scattered about on different planets. Don’t they have littering laws in the 24th century?) and the never before mentioned race of Remuns that are in competition for domination of the Romulan binary homeworld system.

The movie was lame from start to finish, and the only saving grace is the most impressive collision of starships that I’ve ever seen on film. (Worf finally gets to run into something) Not enough to make it worth the cost of a ticket.

And then there’s the proposed script for the next film, tentively dubbed Star Trek XI. This is one fan that sincerely hopes that J.J. Abrams is as good as his word, and isn’t’ contemplating shooting Harve Bennett’s Star Trek Babies script. (although the page still talks about Kirk and Spock meeting at the academy. Maybe somebody should point out to him that Spock and Kirk met for the first time on the Enterprise. Spock had served in Star Fleet for 30 years before meeting James T. Kirk. That also is canon) They’ve been pretty tight lipped about the production so far. I hope that’s a good sign. I’ve liked several of the projects he’s worked on in the past. Here’s hoping that he continues the trend.


Editor’s note 2009. The Abramanator lied.