March 2022

Volume 51:03

In This Issue:

Contributions welcome

The 2022 Libertarian Party of Michigan (LPM) Convention Committee has finalized most of the plans for the LPM Spring Convention.
Register now for the 2022 Libertarian Party of Michigan (LPM) Convention.

We welcome new contributions with careful attention to our guidelines. Articles for the next issue of the Michigan Libertarian must be submitted to chair@michiganlp.org, and newsletter@michiganlp.org no later than the 20th of each month. This allows for publication on the first of each month. We routinely post articles to the website homepage ahead of our publication date.

The Libertarian Party of Michigan depends on contributions to carry out its mission Please Visit us at MichiganLP.org and scroll down to the bottom of our homepage to gain access to our contribution form.

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Ukraine Invasion is Condemned in LEC Resolution

By Scotty Boman, Editor

Ukraine, and the Russian invasion of it, were the focus of an emergency Libertarian Executive Committee (LEC) meeting on February 24th 2022. Earlier in the day the long-anticipated Russian invasive escalated into a full scale conventional war.

The meeting concluded with the approval of the following resolution.

Resolution Condemning Russian Invasion of Ukraine and Opposing US Involvement

Whereas the Libertarian Party of Michigan:

Does not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals;

Ukraine supporters protest outside Embassy in D.C. Source: Wikipedia.
Ukraine supporters protest outside Embassy in D.C. Source: Wikipedia.

Is opposed to war in every form and the indiscriminate suffering it inflicts on combatants and civilians alike;

Is firmly committed to our central premise of non-intervention and peaceful self-determination; now, therefore, be it

Resolved that the Libertarian Party of Michigan:

Condemns the actions of the Russian Federation in Ukraine;

Affirms the sacred right of the People of Ukraine (and all persons everywhere in the world) to defend themselves against aggression;

Does not support the expansion of this conflict nor intervention by the United States;

Does not believe such an expansion of the conflict would be in the interests of the Ukrainian, Russian, or American people, and;

Calls on all parties to instead work toward a ceasefire and a lasting diplomatic solution.

Resolved this 24th day of February, 2022 by the Executive Committee Libertarian Party of Michigan.

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Free Minds and Free Markets

By Joshua Jongema, UPLP Secretary

Free to use with attribution. The ''Flight in Mind'' monument in Zaventem, Belgium by Nenea Hart (in Wikipedia).
Free to use with attribution. The ''Flight in Mind'' monument in Zaventem, Belgium by Nenea Hart (in Wikipedia).

This article expresses the opinion of the author. Other Libertarian Party of Michigan members are welcome to send in opinion articles (In keeping with our guidelines) for consideration to the editor.

The world is experiencing a crisis of conscience, as many have lost faith in humanity, allowing authoritarian policies to enter into effect for the false promise of a better life. To echo Nietzsche, humans were born free, but are chained by the lies they believe. The beliefs of individuals result in their behaviors and choices to involve themselves in exchange with others. Control over trade and markets have caused the United States (US) economy to decline, as inflation has spiked, and our wages have not kept up with the rising cost of living.

The solution to this crisis would involve replacing a system where people can mismanage our funds, with a local decentralized, voluntary free market, and libertarian solutions. A better life is one best lived by the one living, and not the broken machine of a dehumanizing central authority.

A Free Cognitive Awakening

Humans are born without prior knowledge, and spend their lives grasping at the truth of reality. Some people may know of some objective truth, but the majority of human knowledge is speculative at best. Ontology is a philosophy of truth that has two parts. The first is to describe the nature of reality, or 'what is'. The second is to describe the relationship between things.

While many people disagree on what is, even more disagree on the relationships between things. Even fewer agree on the way to achieve a shared goal. Many goals and judgements are not shared, and belong to individuals only. To respect our shared uncertainty, means to respect a free mind.

One cannot practice freedom of mind, without the freedom to travel and trade. To understand how this works requires knowledge of economics. This is difficult to define, but it generally means a measure of events involving exchange. There are two major, competing schools of economics, Keynesian and Austrian. Austrian economics is grounded in reality while Keynesian has no real foundation.

Keeping it Real

Austrian economists measure 'what is' in the form of human action, without valuing any particular action. They measure the relationship between human action and the price of market goods. They follow from the tradition of economists like Carl Menger (1840-1921), who brought on what became called the marginal revolution in economics. Menger taught that subjective choice drove the market, and discarded the defunct Labor Theory of Value.

Ludwig Von Mises (1881-1973) developed the Austrian school by describing economics as a branch of Praxeology, or the study of human action. He taught Catallactics, which is a study for tracing the price of goods back to a human decision. Catallactics is an analysis of price as 'it is', and not 'as it should be'.

Money From the Wishing Well

Keynesian economists focus on what they think 'should be', and force their values on the market. John Maynard Keynes was an economist who proposed in his essay, A Tract on Money Reform (1923), that 'what is' measurable, is the record of all market activity. He proposed that by regulating and controlling the flow of money in the market, a nation could grow economically and avoid, the pitfalls of the free market's, unpredictability. Central planners, like Keynes, caused an upset in China recently: Ten new skyscrapers were demolished, wastefully, because nobody wanted to live in them. It turns out that predicting what people will want is impossible.

Because of Keynesian economists and their meddling, inflation in the US is beginning to skyrocket. The federal administration has boldly lied. They claim printing money, and controlling production, supply and prices, will magically smooth everything over in the near future. The Treasury Department printed eighty percent of the existing US dollars in the last two years. The money supply went from $4 trillion to over $20 trillion. Yearly inflation is at 7%, the highest since mid-1982. Some places in the country are charging over $6 for a gallon of gasoline. Take-home pay is down 2.4% from last year. Meanwhile, the federal government has the most bloated budget ever imagined. They keep printing money, and none of it seems to trickle down. Something has to return our society to normalcy, or we will continue to be forced into endless wars for profit.

Truth Sets Us Free

To know truth, one must be free to explore it. Likewise, to know what you desire, you must be free to pursue it. In our time, as in the time of Mises, wars and social problems seem hinged on the competition between different schools of economics. While central planning has led to prosperity for those who use the government to funnel money into their own pockets, it has not produced a fair or more prosperous society. It won't.

Luckily, the solution is simple. Give freedom to fail for our markets, and freedom of choice for people, and the economy will improve. This would be great for those who work hard to offer a fine product at a fair price, and would only be bad for those who can no longer rig the game in their favor.

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Cold War Thinking Isn't Working

By Jose' Nino, freelance writer

Cold War Thinking Isn't Working.
Cold War Thinking Isn't Working.

This is a reprint of an article ("Cold War Thinking Isn't Working") from Mises.org. They encourage republication with proper citation and attribution. It expresses the opinion of the author. Libertarian Party of Michigan members are welcome to send in opinion articles (In keeping with our guidelines) for consideration to the editor.

With Russia launching a military invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, the corporate press has grown shrill in its calls for punishing Russia with draconian sanctions, supplying Ukraine with increased military aid, and diplomatically isolating the Eurasian power as much as possible. The Two Minutes Hate against Russia has been cranked up to eleven, making any nuanced analysis of why the conflict between Russia and Ukraine has reached such a point almost impossible.

The failure of policy wonks to understand why Russia took decisive action against Ukraine is emblematic of a flawed grand strategy that has dominated DC foreign policy circles since the end of the Cold War. Once the dust from the Soviet Union's collapse settled, international relations specialists were convinced that the US had entered an "end of history" moment where liberal democracy would become the governing standard worldwide. Former Soviet Union states would be the preliminary trial ground for this new liberal democratic project.

Through expanding the reach of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) into former Soviet states and carrying out color revolutions in the region, Washington believed that it could reshape this part of the world in its image. From dealing with violent insurgencies in the Caucasus to confronting precipitous declines in life expectancy and other social ills, such as rising criminal activity, the Soviet Union's successor, the Russian Federation, was in no shape to resist American influence, let alone project power in its own backyard during the 1990s.

It's little wonder that NATO was able to easily intervene in the Balkans, a region featuring ethnic groups like Serbians, who have traditionally been Russian allies, at a time when Russia was in a wobbly state. Nevertheless, avid students of Russian history such as George Kennan, the author of America's containment policy toward the Soviet Union and the Long Telegram, recognized that the Russian bear was down but not out. During the 1990s, the renowned diplomat warned about the dangers of NATO expansion following the Soviet Union's dissolution. Despite Kennan's admonitions, the DC political class was drunk on the notion that the US would remain unipolar and be able to impose its universalist vision across the globe at will.

While the US began throwing its weight around overtly and covertly in the Balkans, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and Syria, Russia gradually reconstituted itself, much to the surprise of American foreign policy wonks. The US-sponsored Rose Revolution and Orange Revolution in Georgia and Ukraine, respectively, on top of attempts to bring these countries under NATO's security umbrella, served as wake-up calls to the Russian national security establishment. The US's outwardly benign image then looked more and more like that of a hostile external actor trying to sneak its way into Russia's historical sphere of influence. Conflict between the two powers would soon become inevitable.

Russia's concerns are understandable when viewed from a geopolitical lens. The US has its Monroe Doctrine to keep external actors out of the Western Hemisphere. Such policies are not the exclusive domain of the US, however. As other civilization states grow stronger and revert to their historical levels of prominence, they proceed to reassert themselves in their respective domains. These powers' principal aim is to expel any undue influence from foreign powers that may try to encroach on their traditional sphere of influence.

However, the US has applied the Monroe Doctrine at a global scale, treating the whole world as its sphere of influence. American policy makers have done so in complete disregard of the potential costs and blowback that could result from overzealous incursions into great powers' backyards.

No one here is saying Russia is an angel. In fairness, the Polish and Baltic states have legitimate historical grievances with Russia due to the latter's previous imperial dominion over the former. However, there's little to suggest that Russia is seconds away from launching a blitzkrieg against Eastern Europe. If the Baltic states and Poland were so worried about Russian aggression, they would consider setting up their own security architecture independent of NATO and even consider building a minimum viable nuclear deterrent.

But tropes of Russia being a second Nazi Germany, with all the attendant tropes of appeasement, are simply lazy analogies with scant historical nuance. There are qualitative differences between those regimes. Moreover, for some in the DC blob, the Cold War has not ended. For example, Texas senator Ted Cruz called out Vladimir Putin for being "a communist" last May.

However, the characterization of Russia as the home of Soviet-style socialism is an outmoded and inaccurate description of contemporary Russia. Bryan MacDonald, a journalist whose primary focus is Russian affairs, pointed out that "Russia has a flat 13% income tax rate" and "tiny social welfare payments" to demonstrate that the Russian economy is not necessarily a full-blown command economy like its Soviet predecessor.

In addition, international relations scholar Artyom Lukin observed that Russia under Putin's tutelage is "a conservative autocracy resembling the czarist Russian Empire" in how it manages its internal affairs. Lukin cited one instance of a Communist Party activist being hauled before a court for engaging in so-called hate speech to demonstrate the Russian government's unique strain of authoritarianism, which is not necessarily a spitting image of the Soviet Union. In a hysteria-filled environment of political discourse, these kinds of nuances fall by the wayside.

Unfortunately, there isn't much in the way of thoughtful geopolitical analysis occurring these days. It's going to take a new generation of leaders who are not encumbered by tired political assumptions to change the course of American foreign policy.

The first step is for foreign policy leaders to admit that the twentieth-century international relations landscape has crumbled away and that primary threats to the US are more internal than external in nature.

Sticking to Cold War-era assumptions is a recipe for a suboptimal foreign policy that could increase the probability of the US stumbling into a disastrous war of choice. If the initial responses to Russia's invasion of Ukraine have told us anything, it's that DC still hasn't learned the error of its ways.

Contact Jose' Nino

Jose' Nino is a freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. Sign up for his mailing list here. Contact him via Facebook or Twitter. Get his premium newsletter here. Subscribe to his Substack here.

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Officers & Staff

General Contact: Libertarian Party of Michigan: PO Box 27065, Lansing, MI 48909; Phone: 888.FREE.NOW.

Chair: Tim Yow. chair@michiganlp.org
First Vice Chair: Ben Boren. vcaffiliates@michiganlp.org
Second Vice Chair: Andrew Chadderdon vcpoliticaldirector@michiganlp.org
Secretary: Daniel Ziemba. secretary@michiganlp.org
Treasurer: Norman Peterson. treasurer@michiganlp.org
District 1 Rep: Ryan Roberts. dist1rep@michiganlp.org
District 2 Rep: Steven Fox. dist2rep@michiganlp.org
District 3 Rep: Jordan Martin. dist3rep@michiganlp.org
District 4 Rep: Rich Theelon. dist4rep@michiganlp.org
District 5 Rep: Dave Canny dist5rep@michiganlp.org
District 6 Rep: Brandon Warzbyok. dist6rep@michiganlp.org
District 7 Rep: Brian Ellison. dist7rep@michiganlp.org
District 8 Rep: Joe Hartman. dist8rep@michiganlp.org
District 9 Rep: Mike Saliba. dist9rep@michiganlp.org
District 10 Rep: Joe. dist10rep@michiganlp.org
District 11 Rep: Bruce Jacquays. dist11rep@michiganlp.org
District 12 Rep: Daniel Muehl-Miller. dist12rep@michiganlp.org
District 13 Rep: Breona Arold. dist13rep@michiganlp.org
District 14 Rep: Paul Vainer. dist14rep@michiganlp.org

Judicial Committee Members

Connor Nepomuceno. judicialcommittee@michiganlp.org
Robert Roddis. judicialcommittee@michiganlp.org
Joshua Smith. judicialcommittee@michiganlp.org


Webmaster: Vacant. Webmaster@MichiganLP.org
Communications Director: Connor Nepomuceno cjnepo1@gmail.com
Newsletter Editor: Scotty Boman. newsletter@michiganlp.org
Ciculation Directors: Jeff Pittel & Catherine Filus. catherine@catherinefilus.com
Social Media Director: Connor Nepomuceno cjnepo1@gmail.com
Historical Committee Chair: Emily Salvette esalvette@gmail.com

Affiliate Contacts

Capital Area: Luke Sciberras, Chair. 248-302-1064, capitalarealp@gmail.com
Genesee County: Chair David Canny, cannyds@gmail.com.
Huron-Raisin: Larry Johnson, 734-320-7237, MichLibertarian@gmail.com
Jackson-Hillsdale: Norman Peterson, (269) 330-2980 norman.peterson@comcast.net
Livingston County: James Weeks II, (810) 422-8769, j.weeks@riseup.net
Macomb County: Mike Saliba, chair@macomblp.org
Northern Michigan: Philip Lindsay. philiplindsay25@gmail.com
Oakland County: Paul Vainer, paul.vainer@gmail.com or Vice Chair Ben Carr at 248-919-8152
Southwest Michigan: Jason Brandenburg. swmi4liberty@be-innovative.net
Straits Area: Chair Andy Evans, (231) 625-8403, . amevans_1968@yahoo.com
straitslp.com or facebook.com/StraitsAreaLP
Upper Peninsula Libertarian Party: Chair Ryan Roberts, (906) 420-2995, UPLP.org. ryan_r03@hotmail.com
Wayne County: Jami Van Alstine, jamiracquel2004@yahoo.com
West Michigan: Steve Fox . (616) 406-7784, Email Steve Fox at sfoxphoto@gmail.com or call (616) 633-8390.

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Upcoming Events

Please contact local affiliate officers (see above listing) to learn how to get involved in their meetings.

The Michigan Libertarian recommends contacting an affiliate officer or check the Website (or Facebook page) associated with the meeting host (if they have one) before arriving at a meeting. Some meetings can get canceled, or locations can change with short notice.

March 1, 2022 - Southwest Michigan Libertarian Party Affiliate Meeting, 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Traveler's Cafe and Pub. 5225 Portage Rd. Portage, MI 49002
For more information, contact Jason Brandenburg email at swmi4liberty@be-innovative.net

March 9, 2022 - Libertarians of Macomb County Affiliate Meeting, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
BD's Mongolian Grill. 13150 Hall Road, Sterling Heights, MI, 48313.
For more information, contact Mike Saliba at macomblp@gmail.com

March 9, 2022 - Libertarian Party of Wayne County Business Meeting, 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Habib's Cuisine. 14316 Michigan Ave, Dearborn, MI, 48126.
Please visit the Libertarian Party of Wayne County's new Website for updates.
For more information, contact Jami Van Alstine, jamiracquel2004@yahoo.com

March 10, 2022 - Huron-Raisin Affiliate Meeting & Convention, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM (Reservations at 6:30 PM)
Aubree's Pizzeria and Grill, 2122 Whittaker Rd Ypsilanti Twp.
The agenda will include; election of affiliate officers, any desired changes to bylaws, nominating delegates & alternates to the LPM March convention and any items introduced by the members.
For more information, contact Larry Johnson at 734-475-9792 or email michlibertarian@gmail.com or call (734) 320-7237

March 12-13, 2022 - Libertarian Party of Michigan Spring Convention, 6:00 PM (Saturday) - 3:00 PM (Sunday)
Weber's Boutique Hotel. 3050 Jackson Ave., Ann Arbor, MI, 48103.
State Delegates will be selecting Michigan's Delegation to the Libertarian Party National Convention in Sparks Nevada, May 26th-29th.
Register now

March 16, 2022 - Jackson-Hillsdale Affiliate Meeting 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Steve's Ranch Restaurant. 311 W Louis Glick Hwy, Jackson, MI
Contact Norman Peterson, (269) 330-2980 norman.peterson@comcast.net

March 16, 2022 - Libertarian Party of Oakland County Affiliate Meeting, 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM.
Farmhouse Coffee and Ice Cream. 29936 West 12 Mile Road. Farmington Hills, MI 48334
Business starts at 7:00 PM. To confirm the meeting email Paul Vainer at: paul.vainer@gmail.com https://lpocmi.org/

March 19, 2022 - West Michigan Affiliate Meeting, 1:00 PM
The LPWM plans to select its delegates to the state convention in the community room at the Krause Memorial Library, 140 East Bridge Street, NE, Rockford.
At the same time, members from the 74th State Representative District (Walker, Grandville and Northwest Kent County) will caucus to select their nominee for the August special election for that district.
For more information, contact Steve Fox at at sfoxphoto@gmail.com or call (616) 633-8390.

March 20, 2022 - Capital Area Affiliate Meeting 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Reno's North (16460 Old U.S. 27) Lansing, MI
Contact Luke Sciberras at 248-302-1064 or email capitalarealp@gmail.com for event details and instructions to join.

March 27, 2022 - Libertarian Party of Genesee County Affiliate Meeting, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM.
White Horse Tavern. 621 W Court St, Flint, MI, 48503.
Business is from Noon to 2:00 PM. To confirm the meeting email Chair David Canny, cannyds@gmail.com.
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LPGCMI

March 27, 2022 - Straits Area Libertarian Party Affiliate Meeting, 2:00 PM
Please RVSP to the SALP event page, or by contacting Andy Evans.
Big Boy. 861 S Main St, Cheboygan, MI 49721
A brief affiliate convention will follow to choose delegates for the March LPM convention in Ann Arbor.
For more information, contact Andy Evans at (231) 625-8403 or email amevans_1968@yahoo.com.

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If you are new to the Michigan Libertarian, you can link to 2016 issues here, http://michiganlp.org/category/newsletters . Other issues are preserved in our historical archives here: http://old.michiganlp.org/resources-2/newsletter.

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The Michigan Libertarian is a publication of the Libertarian Party of Michigan Libertarian Party of Michigan: PO Box 27065, Lansing, MI 48909; Phone: 888.FREE.NOW. The Libertarian Party of Michigan website is paid for with regulated funds by the Libertarian Party of Michigan Executive Committee, Inc. d/b/a the Libertarian Party of Michigan. Not authorized by any candidate.