—Michigan Libertarian
September 2009
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Online newsletter for the Libertarian Party of Michigan

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In This Issue

Support your local Libertarian candidate
Don't miss Libertyfest on November 14
Call for Libby Award nominations
State legislative committees come thru!
Vans Warped Tour LP information booth
Stand Up!
Would you sign this pledge?

Quote of the Month
Column: Teachable Moment
Past Blast

Welcome to the September 2009 issue of the online newsletter of the Libertarian Party of Michigan, Michigan Libertarian. The newsletter is our main vehicle for sharing what's happening for Libertarians in Michigan. You may manage your subscription by going here or visiting our Web site www.mi.lp.org (same as www.michiganlp.org).

Support your local Libertarian candidate

by Bill Hall, LPM Political Director [main]

2009 may be an “off” year for elections, but there are several Libertarian candidates who can use your help in the November election:

Mark Byrne is running for re-election to the Port Huron City Council in St. Clair County. He survived the August primary and will need lots of help for a difficult struggle to get out the vote in the general election. He is one of 14 candidates in a nonpartisan race for seven seats. Contact Mark at iwantska@hotmail.com.

Tom Hren plans to run for the Big Rapids City Council, in Mecosta County, North of Grand Rapids. His is a nonpartisan race, and he is counting on the support of Libertarians all across West Michigan. Contact Tom at thomashren@yahoo.com.

In Oakland County, Andy LeCureaux is running for re-election to the Hazel Park City Council. He is one of six candidates in a nonpartisan race for four seats. To help, contact Andy at alecureaux@yahoo.com.

Greg Merle is running for State Senate in the special election in the 19th district, in the Battle Creek – Jackson area of South Central Michigan. This is a race with no incumbent, in a district regarded as “safe” for neither the Republican nor Democrat candidate. To help Greg rock the boat, contact him at kanemaster@mac.com.

75 Potential Candidates, and Counting!

Michigan Supreme Court and Warren City Council. Kalkaska County Commissioner and the MSU Board of Trustees. Six of 15 US Congressional seats (so far). Plus 40 people interested in running for an office, any office. Letters, emails, telephone calls and messages are streaming in from all across the state; Michiganders eager to step forward, and make a difference as a Libertarian Party candidate in 2010.

Interest in running for office as a Libertarian is high. Since the last general election on November 5, 2008, I’ve been collecting the names of people from all across Michigan, fed up with the status quo, and willing to do something about it by running for office. We’ve received dozens of “applications” to run for specific offices and dozens more volunteer signups willing to “run for office”, any office, at www.lp.org. At the Libertarian Party of Michigan Convention in Jackson in May, several Libertarians publicly announced their intention to run in 2010.

At this rate, we may have contested races in some of our Libertarian nomination caucuses. For one Congressional and one State Representative seat, I already have two potential competing candidates. If you want to run for a particular office, then speak up now, so I can add you to the list!

If we can convert these potential candidates into living, breathing nominees at our county caucuses and state convention in June of 2010, we have a good shot at eclipsing the 57 candidates who ran in 2006 and 85 who ran in 2008.

If you’re interesting in seeking a Libertarian nomination for public office in 2010, contact me, Bill Hall, at politics@michiganlp.org. When you do, I'll add your name to my list of potential candidates, and also add your email address to the special candidate e-newsletter we expect to start publishing soon.

Don't miss Libertyfest on November 14
by Emily Salvette, LPM Chair [main]

The LibertyFest Dinner will be held on Saturday, November 14, 2009 starting at 6:00 p.m. at the Ypsilanti Marriott at Eagle Crest Resort. A highlight of the evening will be the presentation of the 2009 Defender of Liberty (Libby) Awards, which honor our volunteers and those who promote liberty in Michigan. Featured guest speakers will be David Littmann, Senior Economist at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy in Midland, and Wes Benedict, the Executive Director of the national Libertarian Party. The evening is a fundraiser for the Libertarian Party of Michigan and you can choose from three levels of support: $50 basic (available until October 31), $70 sponsor, and $95 Friend of Liberty. Sponsors will have their names printed in the program, as will Friends of Liberty, who also receive preferred reserved seating and a free beverage from the bar.

LibertyFest will also kick off the Libertarian campaign season for 2010. As we gather to celebrate our accomplishments of the past year, it’s a good time to prepare for the important 2010 elections about a year away. David Littmann will discuss “Impact Issues for Candidates in 2010.” Wes will give us practical insight from his years as executive director of the Texas LP in his talk “Why Libertarians Make a Difference.” The program will be of an exciting and informative one, so please invite friends and family to hear these dynamic speakers.

Organizing the event are Libertarian volunteers Julie Mack and Nan Bailey, along with State Chair Emily Salvette. If you would like to help or have questions, contact Emily at chair@mi.lp.org. Reservation details may be found at our Web site . It will be a wonderful evening where you can show your appreciation for our Libby Award winners, get ready for the 2010 elections and show your support for your Libertarian Party. Please don’t miss it!

Call for Libby Award nominations
by Emily Salvette, LPM Chair [main]

The Libertarian Party of Michigan (LPM) is now accepting nominations for the Defender of Liberty (Libby) Awards for 2009. These awards are presented annually to people who have made notable personal efforts in the defense of liberty in the past year. Nominees must live and/or work in the state of Michigan. The three award categories are:

1) Spokesperson for Liberty – a member of the community whose patriotism and conviction have inspired contributions to the cause of liberty, not necessarily an LPM member.

2) Promoter of Liberty – a person who has gone the extra mile to promote the Libertarian Party and our principles. This person must be an LPM member

3) Producer of Liberty – a dedicated behind the scenes LPM member whose tireless efforts exemplify the backbone of our Party.

To nominate someone, send a letter of 200 words or less about the nominee to State Chair Emily Salvette, chair@mi.lp.org, by October 10.

You may learn more about the awards and see a list of past winners at the LibertyFest page on our Web site.

State legslative committees come through!
by Scotty Boman [main]

Lansing, MI - Liberty activists had cause to celebrate on Tuesday, August 18th. Activists from the Libertarian Party of Michigan, Michigan Campaign for Liberty, the Constitutional Coalition, Americans for Prosperity, We the People Congress, Michigan Tea Party and other grassroots activists converged on Lansing to attend simultaneous Senate committee hearings at the Farnum Building.

The majority of activists attended the State Senate Judiciary committee hearing to express their support of Bruce Peterson's SCR 004/SR 17: "A concurrent resolution to affirm Michigan's sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not enumerated and granted to the federal Government." [Link] The Libertarian Party of Michigan resolved to support SCR 004 and its companion HCR 0004 at its annual convention on May 23rd.[Link] The non-partisan Michigan Campaign for Liberty has been supporting the resolutions since HCR 0004 was introduced by Representative Paul Opsommer earlier this year.[Link]

Representative Opsommer commented that he had never before seen so much support
for a resolution at a committee hearing before. He held up a stack of petitions collected by the Campaign for Liberty and other concerned citizens. Every seat in the room was full.

The Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to report SCR004/SR17 out of committee, with recommendation for approval, at the conclusion of the hearing. The resolution still must be debated and voted upon by the full Senate. Its counterpart in the State House (HCR0004), introduced by Representative Paul Opsommer, remains in limbo with the House Government Operations Committee, and no hearing is scheduled.

Another Resolution, also originated in the State House by Paul Opsommer, was HCR No.6: "A concurrent resolution to memorialize the President, the Congress, and the Department of Homeland Security of the United States to change requirements, agreements, and memorandums of understanding relating to the creation of Enhanced Drivers Licenses." [Link] This measure was heard in the House Transportation Committee.

The effect of the resolution is to reject some of the more invasive aspects of the Real ID Act including the RFID and Database sharing requirements. Since both hearings were at the same time, most of the resolution’s supporters left comment cards, but missed this hearing; however, the author of this article was able to speak at both as a member of the LPM. The House Transportation Committee reported this HCR No. 6 out of committee with recommendation for approval by the Michigan House of Representatives.

Vans Warped Tour LP information booth
by Lawrence W. Johnson [main]

From Chair Em: "Here are two good pictures from the Van's Warped Tour LP information booth on July 31, 2009 at Comerica Park. Larry Johnson, Paul Giuliano, Mark Byrne and Greg Creswell ran the booth."

Date: Saturday, August 1, 2009, 6:17 PM

Editor's Note: The Warped Tour is a touring music and extreme sports festival. The tour is held in venues such as parking lots or fields upon which the stages and other structures are erected. The BMX/skateboarding shoe manufacturer Vans, among others, has sponsored the tour every year since 1995, and it is often referred to as the Vans Warped Tour. The tour started out as a showcase for punk rock music, but its more recent line-ups have featured a diversity of genres.

From Lawrence Johnson:

The volunteers gathered 106 Nolan Chart quizzes and 5 names on interested lists. Further, 28 people gave name and address + some other info on the back of the quizzes, and 11 gave us name and email. Two people from Toledo and four from Windsor also gave us info.

Paul Giuliano from the college Libs was awesome! He fit right in with the crowd and worked that crowd like a champ.

In photo on right bottom: Lawrence Johnson, Greg Creswell, and Paul.

Stand up !
by Nan Bailey [main]

Emily asked me to write a few words on why I joined and volunteered to help the Libertarian Party. Here goes. I have considered myself a Conservative and a Libertarian in my political views for a long time. Recent events have encouraged me to stand up and be counted.

First, let me tell you that I have been complaining and grumbling about the Pelosi Obama administration almost from the get go. Their arrogant disregard for The Constitution of the United States and The Bill of Rights is offensive to me. The right to free speech and the individual right to bear arms are both under attack from the Left.

When people start looking over their shoulders before they speak in the United States of America, you know there is something seriously wrong. I have become an avid follower of Glenn Beck, a well known Libertarian. If you don’t know who he is, read his book Common Sense and/or watch him on Fox News. Sorry for the commercial, but I think he is a great advocate for limited government. His premise is simple: educate yourself, take a stand on an issue that you are passionate about, and speak up. Don’t be neutral in perilous times.

Second, the assault on seniors and others in the national healthcare bill, HR 3200, was a wakeup call to me. A society is judged by how it cares for the weak and the vulnerable in its population. I am encouraged by the loud dissent at the town hall meetings across the country during the month of August, but we have to hold the course.

And, third, my brother, who got tired of listening to me complain on the phone every Sunday, started saying, “What are you going To Do about it?” I decided that he was right; it was time to stand up and have the courage of my convictions “to do something about it.”

So, on a recent Sunday evening, I took the plunge and signed up on line at the Libertarian Party web site. It feels really good to “do” something and not just talk about it. It is time to draw a line in the sand. It is time to stand up and be counted.

Would you sign this pledge?

The Libertarian Party “Responsible Legislator Pledge”

I, ___________________________, member of the United States Congress representing the state of _____________________, affirm that I will not vote for any health care reform legislation I have not read in its entirety.

Signed, ________________________     _________
             Name of Member of Congress            Date

This pledge is intended to help our federal LP candidates in 2010. You can download a printable version here. If your opponent refuses to sign it, they are admitting they don't read major legislation before they vote on it.

If they sign it, they are now personally responsible for every aspect of the bill. They can't claim they didn't know it outlawed private insurance. To find out more about the Libertarian Party, our opposition to government-controlled health care and real solutions to make health care affordable, accessible, safe and secure, go to www.LP.org. [main]

Quote of the Month

Simplicity blossoms when coercion dies.
— Lao Tzu (Gesundheit!)

Article: A teachable moment
by Bill Bigler [main]

... at the Dingell Romulus Town Hall Meeting

I am a long-time libertarian but a fledgling protestor. I attended my very first town hall meeting Thursday night in Romulus . Representative Dingell was there to address us about the Health Care Bill. To his credit, he withstood our protests and answered a few pertinent questions—possibly from our audience. Before he spoke, there was a little lady who spoke in favor of the bill. During her remarks, she said, “I challenge any of you to look me in the eye and tell me I don’t have a right to health care!”

We angry, rebellious anti-HC protestors, who had been booing, guffawing, and yelling out rebuffs aplenty to pro-HC crowd members and speakers alike, were notably silent. Nobody took her up on her challenge. She was either born a little person and/or she had suffered some disfiguring disability and complained that she couldn’t get insurance due to pre-existing conditions. I don’t know what silenced us. I don’t know if we felt that it would be picking on the disabled or politically incorrect to challenge a little person. Some might have thought she was correct in her assertion. All I know is that she cowed us all including me.

NoNow, I am a novice at all of this. I have never been to a town hall meeting before. I tend to be a little shy around strangers and in new situations. This probably comes as a shock to Marianne and Cornelia, two of our Ann Arbor Patriots whom I had just met a few minutes before. I bet they had me pegged as an outgoing, effusive guy which I was when I met them, but I felt connected to them because we had the AAP’s association so I felt as if I already knew them. In any event, I didn’t react as I wish I would have to the lady’s dare.

Here’s what I wish I would have done. When the lady issued her challenge, I wish I would have stood up, approached her, looked her in the eye, and said:

“Here I am, Dear, eye to eye. You don’t have a right to a solid gold Cadillac, to marry Brad Pitt, or to health care. You do have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. You have a right to try to obtain a solid gold Cadillac, to try to marry Brad, or to try to get health care. But you don’t have a right to health care because the only way you get that kind of right is at the point of gun.

You only get that kind of right by turning to that lady next to you, pointing your gun, and saying, “Give me the money for my health care or I’ll take it from you by force and, if you resist me, I’ll kill you to get it.” Now, I’m sure you would never do that, but that is exactly what you’re advocating that the government do to folks every time you say, “I have a right to health care” because those kind of rights only come at the point of a gun. We owe it to one another to be better than that. We owe each other liberty. We owe it to one another not to initiate force to achieve our ends and our government owes it to us to treat us with the same respect for our liberties that we show to one another.”

So, instead of talking about your right to health care, why don’t we talk about non-coercive ways to make our health care better? Why don’t we talk about ways to get the government laws and regulations out of the way of improving our health system? Why don’t we look for ways that we can free up and expand our options and opportunities for better health. Let’s put away the heavy yoke and the pointed gun of government and see what a free market in health care could do if we ever gave it a chance.”

That’s what I wish I had done and said. I’m hoping I get a chance to redeem myself in the future. Then, maybe, when I get to the pearly gates of that great Galt’s Gulch in the sky, Ayn Rand, John Galt, Murray Rothbard, and Harry Browne will reckon that I have made up for past transgressions and will welcome me in.

Bill Bigler
Ann Arbor Patriots

Book and Movie Review Feature

The following reviews have been contributed from LPM Webmaster Brian Wright's commentary and review site, The Coffee Coaster (anyone who wishes to post his or her own reviews, please contact the editor):

David goes after the disgraced political Goliath

That's an interesting point: Frost is chasing Nixon, not so much the other way around. And from Nixon's people, such as military spit-and-polish psycho Jack Brennan (played menacingly well by Kevin Bacon) and a fair number of sycophants working on his memoirs—including Dianne Sawyer (Kate Jennings Grant)—you sense the prospect of a trap of the good-natured, ladies'-man, TV-personality Frost stepping well out of his weight class. Indeed, there is a focus in the film on Frost's need to prove to himself that he is a deep and substantial journalist, that he can go toe to toe with someone of Nixon's formidable rhetorical powers....
[full review]

Choosing CivilityChoosing Civility:
The 25 rules of considerate conduct

by P.M. Forni

Candidly, reading such a sneaky and seductive little book as Choosing Civility (sneaky and seductive because, as the boss used to say, 'he puts into words stuff you already know' and thus sort of tricks you into coming to grips with deeper ideas) reminds me of where I'm not exactly being the best I can be. Just from Chapter 1: Pay Attention, on more than a handful of occasions I don't really pay attention to people, to what they're telling me, to their body language, to their tone of voice. Even if I can respond logically to their words, I can be oblivious to the subtext and context....
[full review]

Michigan Libertarian Blast from the Past

Take a stroll down memory lane with this excerpt from one of the longest-running state Libertarian newsletters. Today, check out the July/August issue of 1992. Click on this link for the full PDF version of this newsletter.

Newsletter editor Greg Stempfle has compiled the entire body of available Michigan Libertarian newsletters up on this page of the LPM Website.

Feedback and Letters

We like to publish shorter letters in general.
Okay, here's one:

To the LP of Michigan:

I agree with everything you have ever thought, or said, or done in your entire existence. Please keep it up.

T. Paine

[Yes, that's a joke. Message being: we would like to hear feedback from you, real people, on any little thing, preferably with something short and punchy.] Please voice your comments or opinions to the newsletter editor, Greg, via email by the 25th of the month... and we will post them.

September 2009 Calendar

  September 1 – Meeting of the   Libertarians of Macomb County.   
  All members of the Libertarian   Party, their friends and family, and   anyone interested in learning more   about the LP are invited to attend.   The meeting begins at 7:30 pm but   feel free to join us for good food and   conversation at 6:30 pm at the Loon River Café, 34911 Van Dyke Ave, Sterling Heights. Contact Jim Allison.

September 1 – St. Clair and Sanilac Counties Monthly Meeting – LP group meets the 1st Tuesday of the month starting at 6 pm at Military Street Music Cafe, 1102 Military Street (downtown), Port Huron. Contact Mark Byrne, 810-987-9856

September 2 – Washtenaw County LP of Washtenaw County Monthly Business Meeting - 7 to 9 pm at Classic Cup Cafe, 4389 Jackson Rd, Ann Arbor (In the Parkland Plaza west of Ann Arbor). Contact James Hudler, 734-475-9792, or Larry Johnson.

September 2 – South West Michigan LPSWM Executive Committee Meeting – 6:00 – 6:50 pm at IHOP, 1981 Pipestone Rd., Benton Harbor. Guests are welcome. Followed by: Round Table Political Forum hosted by the LP of South West Michigan. 7-9 pm at The Livery, 190 Fifth St, Benton Harbor. Visitors are welcome to participate. Contact Bill Bradley, 269-637-4525.

September 3 – Wayne County Monthly Meeting – Cheli's Chili Bar, 21918 Michigan (corner of Oakwood Blvd) Dearborn. Dinner orders at 7 pm, meeting at 8 pm. Weather permitting, we’ll again be on the roof. Contact Ray Warner, 313-598-3666

September 8 – Capital Area Capital Area LP Monthly Meeting – 7 pm at former LPM office, 2722 E Michigan Ave, Ste 22, Lansing (park and enter in back). Contact Will Tyler White, 517-349-3806.

September 9 – Monthly Meeting of the LP of Oakland County. 6:00 - 6:30 pm dinner, 7:30 meeting. Sila's Restaurant, 4033 W. 12 Mile, Berkley (2 blocks east of Greenfield on south side of 12 Mile). Please join us in planning out and implementing the next phase of our Libertarian presence in Oakland County. Contact Jim Fulner, LPOC Chair.

September 12 – Detroit Dally in the Alley – 8:30 am to 9:45 pm. Dally in the Alley is a huge annual street fair that was started by residents in an alley just south of Wayne State University. It features music, food, vendors, and an eclectic crowd of people who are open to new ideas.... including libertarianism.

Volunteers are needed for our "Individual Liberty" information table at this event. There is a special need for volunteers to help set up and keep watch in the morning. Visit the Dally Web for details: . Contact Scotty Boman, scottyeducation@yahoo.com, 313-247-2052

September 15 – Warren & Grand Rapids – sponsored by Campaign for Liberty Audit the Fed Petition Drop-off Event - 3 pm - Show up for the big petition drop-off event in either Grand Rapids where we will deliver petitions to Senator Stabenow, or in Warren to deliver petitions to Senator Levin.

Campaign for Liberty's Mass Action event will culminate with nationwide visits to local Senate offices. Our goal is to have over 500 people show up for each rally to drop off 2000 signatures. If you cannot make it to one of the rallies, visit the office closest to you or contact a local CFL representative for local events. Contact Scotty Boman, scottyeducation@yahoo.com, 313-247-2052

September 16 – Washtenaw County LP of Washtenaw County Social/Work Meeting -7-7 to 9 pm at Classic Cup Cafe, 4389 Jackson (In the Parkland Plaza west of Ann Arbor). Contact James Hudler, 734-475-9792, or Larry Johnson, michlibertarian@comcast.net

September 29 – Calhoun County Monthly Meeting of the LP of Calhoun County Executive Committee, 7 p.m. Please contact Jack Worsham for location. (269) 963-2679, WORSHAM74@aol.com

October 1  – Wayne County Monthly Meeting – Cheli's Chili Bar, 21918 Michigan (corner of Oakwood Blvd) Dearborn. Dinner orders at 7 pm, meeting at 8 pm. Weather permitting, we’ll again be on the roof. Contact Ray Warner, 313-598-3666

October 3 – Detroit Michigan Medical Marijuana Symposium - - 9 am -5 pm - Wayne State University Law School - Partrich Auditorium - Keynote speaker: Professor Robert Sedler. There will be panels on legal, medical, and civil issues. LP activist and Hazel Park City Councilman Andy LeCureaux will speak on the civil panel. Admission is free, but there is a $5 fee for lunch and materials. Seating is limited, so you need to register ASAP. For more information and to download a registration form, go to www.mimjinfo.org. Contact Leonard Schwartz, leonard@leonardschwartz.us

October 4 – Libertarian Party of Michigan Libertarian Executive Committee meeting – 4:00 teleconference. All LPM members may dial in to listen 218-844-3366, pin #576532 (long distance charges may apply). Contact Emily Salvette chair@mi.lp.org 734-645-5809.

October 6 – St. Clair and Sanilac Counties Monthly Meeting – LP group meets the 1st Tuesday of the month starting at 6 pm at Military Street Music Cafe, 1102 Military Street (downtown), Port Huron. Contact Mark Byrne, 810-987-9856, iwantska@hotmail.com

October 6 – Monthly Meeting of the Libertarians of Macomb County. LMC meets on the 1st Tuesday of the month. All members of the Libertarian Party, their friends and family, and anyone interested in learning more about the LP are invited to attend. The meeting begins at 7:30 but feel free to join us for good food and conversation at 6:30 pm at the Loon River Café, 34911 Van Dyke Ave, Sterling Heights. Contact Jim Allison, jim.e.allison@gmail.com

October 7 – LP of Washtenaw County Monthly Business Meeting -7 to 9 pm at Classic Cup Cafe, 4389 Jackson Rd, Ann Arbor (In the Parkland Plaza west of Ann Arbor). Contact James Hudler, 734-475-9792, or Larry Johnson, michlibertarian@comcast.net

October 7 – South West Michigan LPSWM Executive Committee Meeting – 6:00 – 6:50 pm at IHOP, 1981 Pipestone Rd., Benton Harbor. Guests are welcome. Followed by: Round Table Political Forum hosted by the LP of South West Michigan. 7-9 pm at The Livery, 190 Fifth St, Benton Harbor. Visitors are welcome to participate. Contact Bill Bradley, 269-637-4525, secretary@lpswmich.org  

For more events, see the full online calendar on the Website.

About the Michigan Libertarian

The Michigan Libertarian is published/posted on the first of each month. Send calendar events and news/articles to
e-newsletter@michiganlp.org by the 25th of the prior month.

The Michigan Libertarian debuted on August 1, 2009 and replaced the monthly LPMOnline.  It will go out on the first of every month and will be distributed free to anyone who signs up, which can be done at the LPM web site www.mi.lp.org (or www.michiganlp.org).

LPM members who need a hard copy may request one be mailed to them by contacting Emily Salvette, chair@mi.lp.org or 734-645-5809.

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