Monday, February 25, 2013

Press Release -- HB402 "Assault Weapon" Ban Tabled



Contact: Mike Blessing, State Chair – 505-249-1248

[ALBUQUERQUE] – The Libertarian Party of New Mexico (LPNM) applauds the House Consumer and Public Affairs Committee decision to table House Bill 402, which would have made it illegal for most New Mexicans to own an "assault weapon or large-capacity ammunition feeding device."

"This was a surprisingly sensible decision by committee members, given there's no clear definition of what an 'assault weapon' actually is and because gun bans only serve to disarm the law-abiding public," said LPNM State Chair Mike Blessing. "Furthermore, the ridiculous wording of the proposed law made it virtually unenforceable."

The ban would have exempted several groups of individuals, including law enforcement officers and military personnel. More problematic, the bill would have exempted "a person [who] possesses an assault weapon or large-capacity ammunition-feeding device for use exclusively at a firing range owned and operated by a gun dealer licensed in New Mexico and the assault weapon or large-capacity ammunition-feeding device is located on the premises of the firing range."

"You have to ask what the point of banning 'assault weapons' is if a person is still allowed to own one as long as they claim they're only going to use it at a firing range," Blessing added. "It's idiotic to think this clause could possibly be enforced. If a police officer stopped you while you were initially transporting your so-called assault weapon to the firing range, would you be fined or jailed? And who would be tasked with ensuring people who own 'assault weapons' were keeping them at a firing range at all times? It's ridiculous."

The term "assault weapon" currently enjoys no singular legal definition. It's normally used to refer to the cosmetic features of semi-automatic firearms and can refer to firearms of any caliber. For example, a "military style" semi-automatic .22 caliber rifle may be designated an "assault weapon," whereas a common semi-automatic .22 caliber "hunting style" rifle would not be considered an "assault weapon."

"The LPNM opposes gun control laws at any level and considers them unconstitutional," Blessing added. "The LPNM will continue to vigorously fight to protect the Second Amendment rights of New Mexico citizens."



Established in 1972 by Margaret Mathers in Farmington, LPNM is the third-largest political party in the state. LPNM seeks to preserve personal liberty and freedom by opposing new or more restrictive laws, new or more expensive spending programs, and new or higher taxes. Guided by the Non-Aggression Principle, which opposes the initiation of force to achieve political or social goals, Libertarians promote peace, personal freedom, and unfettered capitalism.

Official LPNM website:

Thanks to Maureen Johnson for putting together this press release.

Copyright © 2013 Libertarian Party of New Mexico, Maureen Johnson and Mike Blessing. All rights reserved.
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Sunday, February 17, 2013

Countering Statist False Fronts

Earlier today, I shared a post from the Libertarian Party's Facebook page –

Click the picture to see the original posting on Facebook.

One of the Libertarian Party's goals at this year's Students for Liberty conference was to help students tell the difference between real liberty groups and false fronts whose goal is to trick libertarians into voting for statist candidates.

It turned out that was completely unnecessary. They already knew as much as we did on the topic, if not more.

Some pointed out that when the National Rifle Association endorsed Mitt Romney, the NRA basically told every Republican governor in the country that they could pass "assault" weapons bans, and still count on an NRA endorsement if they ran for president.

Others pointed out that when the NRA called for more government, instead of ending "gun free school zones" which literally advertise a large group of disarmed victims, the NRA made itself irrelevant to the Liberty movement. Many had become supporters of the Gun Owners of America or another group out of disgust with NRA's support of statism.

As experts in marketing, the NRA had done the classic trade show trick of having attractive representatives hand out tote bags to every incoming person. The idea is, obviously, that then people put flyers, etc. in the bag, carry around the bag, and that tricks everyone at the conference into believing that the organization has a ton of support.

Unfortunately for the NRA, Libertarians, libertarians, minarchists, anarcho-capitalists, r3volutionaries, and voluntarists are not that easy to manipulate. In this picture, a student activist has stuffed his NRA tote bag into a Libertarian Party tote bag. Note that the LP didn't hand them out to every incoming person, only to people who requested them at our table.

Copyright © 2013 Libertarian Party of New Mexico and Mike Blessing. All rights reserved.
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Sunday, February 10, 2013

Welcome to Obamacare: The Optometrist will see You Now

A disturbing news story caught my attention this week. It illustrates the negative ramifications of health care reform, Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act (ACA), whatever you prefer to call it.

It's a fact that extending healthcare to millions of currently uninsured people is going to place huge strains on the system. In California, it's suddenly dawning on the powers-that-be that there won't be enough doctors to serve all these new patients.

I know! Shocker, right?

What's actually shocking is California's proposed solution: Allow people with little to no actual medical training to serve as primary care providers. This includes pharmacists and optometrists. Granted, today all pharmacists and optometrists hold doctoral degrees. But it wasn't so long ago that becoming a pharmacist required just a bachelor's degree. In fact, prior to the late 1990s, a high school student could go directly into a 5-year pharmacy program. And while optometrists complete four years of post-graduate education, it's almost all focused on the eyes and vision care.

Here's a quote from a Los Angeles Times article that illustrates my concern about allowing professionals like optometrists to act as primary health care providers:
[California State Senator Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina), an optometrist] said he often sees Medicaid patients who come to his La Puente practice because they have failed their vision test at the DMV. Many complain of constant thirst and frequent urination. "I know it's diabetes," he said."
Really? Just because someone failed an eye exam at the DMV and has "constant thirst and frequent urination," this man "knows" the patient has diabetes? This surprises me because, as a nurse, I can think of several other potential diagnoses with these symptoms. These patients well may have diabetes, but I wouldn't automatically leap to that conclusion.

And this is what bothers me about the pending California legislation. I don't think individuals without direct patient care education and experience should be allowed to magically become "primary care providers." I have the utmost respect for pharmacists, but their doctoral education is specific to medication. Ditto for optometrists, but their post-graduate education is pretty much limited to eye issues. None of these folks have experience performing patient exams. 

Furthermore, as I mentioned earlier, the "Pharm D" or "Doctor of Pharmacy" degree has only been around since the late 1990s. The legislation presumably would grandfather in any pharmacist (or optometrist), regardless of their level of education. I don't know how long optometrists have been required to obtain a doctoral degree, but does it really matter? Do you want an optometrist coordinating your care for, say, lung cancer?

The proposed California legislation would relax restrictions on nurse practitioners and physician assistants, allowing them to practice independently. I find this a much more reasonable solution. In many states, including New Mexico, nurse practitioners have practiced independently as primary care providers for years. Numerous studies support the safety of independent practice by nurse practitioners. I'm sure the same would be true for PAs.

Although the education requirement to become an NP or PA is lower (usually a master's degree) than that to become a pharmacist or optometrist, NPs and PAs have actual medical education. They've studied pathophysiology extensively. They know how to take a medical history -- and know what items should raise red flags. In my experience, NPs and PAs are well aware of when to refer a patient up the ladder to an MD. Partly that's because they've worked in the system and view patient care as a team effort.

The anarchist in me wants to love this proposed California legislation. Let almost anyone with some sort of master's or doctoral degree in the biological sciences act as a primary care provider. Let individuals decide for themselves whether or not they want to trust an optometrist or pharmacist with their general health and well-being.

But the more savvy libertarian in me understands that the proposed California legislation won't give people a choice in the matter. Some people will be forced onto unqualified "primary care providers" because the real doctors will have to stop taking new patients. And when a person's choice in such an important matter is taken away, that's real cause for alarm.

Welcome to Obamacare: The pharmacist will see you now.

Copyright © 2013 Libertarian Party of New Mexico. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Memo to Susana: "The Feds" is Us

I've heard some unsettling new rhetoric being bandied about regarding health care reform. I first noticed it in Governor Susana Martinez' announcement that New Mexico will be expanding Medicaid under Obamacare.
“If we were to expand Medicaid the federal government would pay a higher portion for these individuals' healthcare, and the state would actually save money,” Martinez said. 
Later, during media interviews that questioned her decision, she emphatically repeated, "The FEDS will pay 100 percent of this during the first three years. The FEDS will pay for 100 percent of this."

I've since heard this same rhetoric from other parties regarding Obamacare, in general. One woman I spoke with said, "The state [health insurance] exchanges will be good because the feds will help with the costs" (emphasis mine).

Well, here's a newsflash for Governor Martinez and, um, everyone else: "The Feds" is us. It's every taxpayer in the United States.

It's always scary to hear this insidious type of rhetoric invading the public discussion of such an important issue as healthcare reform. This single, subtle phrase -- the feds -- has been subverted from its original meaning (the federal government) into a description of a discrete and apparently magical entity, a body that somehow exists separate from each one of us.

But in fact, "the feds" is us, in a very literal sense. It's important for people to remember whenever the term "the feds" is uttered in reference to money, it refers to every single taxpayer in America. It's that simple.

In expanding Medicaid under Obamacare, Governor Martinez apparently believes it's OK to redistribute the wealth of other Americans into New Mexico, because that's what it boils down to. If, as she says, "the feds" will pay for 100 percent of our state's Medicaid expansion, that means taxpayers in New York and California, Georgia and Oregon, and all states in between are paying for it.

But it also means New Mexico taxpayers are paying for this Medicaid expansion. Just because our tax dollars are being run through Washington first (hence, becoming "the feds' money") doesn't make it any less a fact. 

Please, my fellow Americans, don't be fooled by this rhetoric. 

Copyright © 2013 Libertarian Party of New Mexico. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Musings of a Libertarian Buddhist

Musings of a Libertarian Buddhist
by Ish Calleros

Recently, I was challenged by an Obama supporter friend of mine. A fellow "Buddhist" as to my views on gun control. The fact that I thought guns kept people safe from criminal and tyrannical activity apparently disqualified me from walking as did The Buddha.

This statement already illustrates the problem at hand. Coercion.

Libertarian values at their core center around the idea of non-aggression. Non-coercion. It is this idea that attracted me to the Libertarian political philosophy. Simply put, do not coerce others in any way, shape, or form. Religion, in my opinion is one of biggest forms in which people attempt to coerce people. By trade, I am a martial arts instructor. I tell my students all the time that bullying can occur physically, mentally or spiritually. I teach them to watch for signs of bullying and to never fall victim to it. Spiritual bullying can be very intense in nature. It can lead to murder, mass murder, or genocide.

That being said, what attracted me to Buddhism as a spiritual practice (read: not religion) was the idea of letting go of judgment as a way to improve the self. When you take the ideas of Siddhartha Gautama the man (The Buddha), he was very wise in leaving room for questioning his teachings. "If you find The Buddha, kill The Buddha" being one of my personal favorites, he encouraged revolutionary thought. Even if it were against his own ideas. He very carefully closed the door on any who would make a deity out of him.

Yet many did. Many do. To the point where when you mix Buddhism with modern "Democrat" beliefs, you get coercion. "You can't believe in gun rights and The Buddha's teachings at the same time." I disagree. In fact, if you look at the evidence, it would appear that Buddhism as a philosophy is more geared to Libertarian thought than other forms of spiritual practices while still leaving room for others who have different spiritual inclinations. 

Example: The Buddha said, "no one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path." Were he a statesman saying this exact line, it might come at a time just before he gets rid of entitlement programs. In fact, that single line almost excludes Democrats from his teachings, not Libertarians. He goes on to say; "The whole secret of existence is to have no fear. Never fear what will become of you. Depend on no one. Only the moment you reject all help are you freed." I can assure you, right along with my Buddhist principles, I will not be taking any handouts soon. Seems pretty downright Libertarian to me.

I am not the only one who believes the belief systems are seamlessly compatible. Robert A. Meyer calls it "The Way of the Libertarian Warrior." His writings blend his idea of the Zen Buddhist – a peaceful warrior-with hard-hitting Libertarian edge: "When Patrick Henry said 'give me liberty or give me death,' he wasn't joking. He understood an eternal truth. Government subjugation of an individual's body, mind, and spirit amount to a living death."

The man understands the biggest bully known to man: The Government, and he will not take it lightly. Not a man lacking in diligence. And what did The Buddha say about diligence? "To be idle is a short road to death and to be diligent is a way of life; foolish people are idle, wise people are diligent."

Moving on to compassion, another Buddhist principle, I will give you a peek into my martial arts classroom. I tell the children as well as adults, "self-reliance is compassion in action. Loving yourself so much that you will defend yourself is actually the highest form of love. How can you love another human or be compassionate with one if you have none for yourself? Love yourself. You deserve it." Any compassion that you are capable of giving is because you are self-reliant to have something to give. When giving of your own free will, that is true compassion. Plus, the person receiving gets to feel true gratitude. How spiritually devoid is a transaction then when coercion is involved? In fact, the spiritually inclined man in me believes that coerced giving is "evil." You promote resentment from the giver. The person on the receiving end does not feel gratitude but entitlement. And the receiving party actually resents the giver for having more. When done in freedom, there is gratitude and compassion sprung forth into the universe. The government wants us to feel that the evil is not wanting to be forced to give. Again, I will refer back to the Buddha here: "virtue is persecuted more by the wicked than it is loved by the good."

The more I study and feel from within, I know that no other political philosophy can actually make sense to my Buddhist principles other than the Libertarian party. So I am grateful to the person who questioned my positions on gun control and the Buddha. It inspired a deeper introspection that reaffirmed my already solid principles.

Ish Calleros is the owner and operator of Kung Fu San Soo of Albuquerque

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Monday, January 28, 2013

OUR America Initiative Rally with Gary Johnson and Judge Jim Gray

Date – Monday, 8 April 2013
Time – 6:00 PM
Location – UNM Student Union Building (1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque NM 87131)

2012 Libertarian Presidential Candidate (and former two-time New Mexico Governor) Gary Johnson and 2012 Libertarian Vice Presidential Candidate Judge Jim Gray will kick off their 2013 OUR America Initiative Nationwide Campus Tour at the University of New Mexico Student Union Building on Monday April 8th at 6:00 PM.

The OUR America Initiative seeks to broaden the parameters of the public policy debate of current topics in the national arena. We look to enlighten the population about civil liberties, free enterprise, limited government, and traditional American values. It is our aim to increase the amount of discussion and involvement regarding all-important issues.

Hosted by Governor Johnson's UNM fraternity (Sigma Alpha Epsilon), this event will feature Governor Johnson and Judge Gray addressing the audience about issues facing America in 2013, followed up by an open question and answer session.

Attendance is open (and complimentary) to the UNM student body as well as the general public.

As part of the policy of the OUR America Initiative, information booths (complimentary) will be made available to all social and political groups interested in participating.

If your organization would like to reserve a booth (space is limited – first come, first serve), contact the Our America Initiative by leaving a comment below.

For more information about the OUR America Initiative (donations accepted), go to:

Afterwards, some of us will get together at the Frontier Restaurant (2400 Central Ave SE) for an informal no-host meet-and-greet.

All rights reserved.

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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Albuquerque Liberty Forum -- February 2013

Date – Thursday, 14 February 2013
Time – 6:00 – 8:00 PM
Location – Frontier Restaurant (2400 Central Ave SE)

Albuquerque Liberty Forum is a no-host dinner, with discussion of issues important to libertarians, capitalists (anarcho- and otherwise), objectivists, extropians, Tea Partiers and Constitutionalists.

We're currently meeting at the Frontier Restaurant at 2400 Central Ave SE, in Albuquerque, from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM.

The Frontier does NOT serve alcohol. As such, this will be an open-carry-friendly event (concealed and Constitutional carriers are welcome, too!)

Suggestions for speakers are welcome – let us know in advance if you want to address the group, so we can promote you!

Scheduled speakers will have thirty (30) minutes to make their case, then should be open to questions from the audience.

Unscheduled speakers wanting to address the group will have five (5) minutes to make their case at the chair's discretion, then should be open to questions from the audience.

Audience members are requested to ask questions of the speaker as opposed to making statements. All speakers will be considered to have consented to being recorded, including but not limited to audio or video devices, and for public distribution of those recordings (YouTube, etc.).

Handouts are welcome and encouraged. Assume that any printed material handed out is for public distribution.

Agenda for this event

  1. Round-robin introductions (if needed)
  2. Updates, notices about upcoming events
  3. Speaker – Mike Blessing, Libertarian candidate for State Representative, District 16
  4. Q&A for Mike Blessing
  5. General discussion

Reposted around the web

Backpage / Craigslist / Duke City Fix / Facebook / FreedomConnect / Google Plus / / Tea Party Nation

Copyright © 2013 Libertarian Party of New Mexico, Libertarian Party of Bernalillo County, New Mexico and Mike Blessing. All rights reserved.

Friday, January 11, 2013

A Line in the Sand

When liberals talk about "gun culture" . . . It isn't about the guns really, though gun control culture is worried about having that much personal autonomy in the hands of people who don't share their values and like their independence, it's about rural America. And rural America, like guns, is another symbol that stands in for traditional America.
--Daniel Greenfield, Sultan Knish Blog: Gun Culture and Gun Control Culture

Molṑn labéis ( Molon Labe) is a classical expression of defiance reportedly spoken by King Leonidas I in response to the Persian army's demand that the Spartans surrender their weapons at the Battle of Thermopylae. . . So what does molon labe mean? Well, it is an invitation -- and a challenge -- all rolled into one. From the original Greek molon labe means: "Come and take 'em."
-- JD Longstreet, Right Side News Blog: Americans Won’t Give Up Guns, Law or Not

As we end the year here in the rump end of flyover country, we have been talking about the new and even more insidious threats to our liberty and our way of life.  

Americans of a certain bent are fond of talking about “wars” that are not shooting wars. From the Obama administration we have heard that if we do not like our tax money going toward someone else’s contraception, we are perpetrating a “War on Women.” Ronald Reagan brought us the “War on Drugs” (which has become a shooting war down on the border), and LBJ brought us the “War on Poverty” all those years ago. We do not appear to be winning either of these ersatz wars. I am sure there are other “wars” that are not wars out there, and as a Libertarian, I am deeply suspicious of “wars” on inanimate objects or conditions, because they are generally used as an excuse to limit our liberties.

In rural America, however, we have known for some time that the executive branch of the federal government has plans to wage a war on our way of life. It started in 2008 when presidential candidate Barack Obama told his supporters at a San Francisco fundraiser about rural Americans bitterly clinging to “guns and religion.” ( This war isn’t only about guns and religion, both of which the progressive leftists of the Obama administration despise, it is also a war on rural small holders and is being waged by the government against us with bureaucratic weapons such as land use policies, sweeping EPA regulations, and farm bills such as SB 1050, which set the stage for regulations on what we can sell and even what we can consume from our own farms and ranches. 

But the war on “flyover country”—that vast interior of the North American continent that is terra incognita to the progressive city dwellers on the coasts—is heating up because of the fear this administration has of law-abiding, armed citizens. Their maps are not labeled “Here there be Dragons” in fancy, medieval print; rather they say: “Here there be GUNS.” And as Daniel Greenfield pointed out at the Sultan Knish Blog (quoted above), those guns are a symbol to the progressives. They represent  people who do not need or want federal government help, and who often refuse it, knowing from bitter experience that when the Feds come marching in, local interests are no match for the interests of outsiders such as environmentalists and bureaucrats. In the rump end of flyover country we understand that government “help” really means government interference, the destruction of our local economies, and ultimately, tyranny by a metro-majority that doesn’t know a thing about our way of life, fears it, and wishes to force us to conform to an alien and un-American standard.

The shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in suburban New Jersey is the incident that Obama, his progressive administration, his media sycophants, and the metro-dependent control freaks have been waiting for. Never mind that the shooter was not a legal gun owner, and as Daniel Greenfield wrote, was not part of what the ubiquitous they call the “gun culture.” They were all indecently salivating to confiscate guns before the little bodies of the innocent were even removed from the classroom. Never let a good crisis go to waste, as their mentor Saul Alinsky liked to say.

Since the 2008 election, Americans have been anticipating that Obama and his minions would be coming for our liberties. Some of us paid attention to what he said before he was elected, and we knew who his mentors were and what political philosophy they bequeathed to him. During November and December 2008, gun sales rose dramatically, and ammunition fairly flew off the shelves of gun shops and sporting goods departments. In Spring 2009, many of us formed and joined Tea Party organizations  and 9-12 groups, banding together to protest the economic consequences of Obama’s socialist political creed. Some of us woke up to the threat to our liberties for the first time. As election day 2012 neared, gun and ammunition sales picked up again, following the same pattern as in 2008. We were aware that with the need of re-election behind him, Obama’s campaign against liberty would likely pick up speed.

On the Tuesday before Sandy Hook, the Catron Kid and I were in Cope Reynold’s Southwest Shooting Authority in Arizona to purchase some ammo and look over a new rifle for shooting coyotes and other small varmints on the ranch. (In rural America our guns are tools, and are most often used to protect livestock from predators. They are rarely drawn against another human being. It is not necessary because we value one another’s life, liberty and property way out here). You may recognize Cope’s name and establishment, because his gun shop has become famous or infamous (depending on your politics) for the sign he posted on his shop’s door:
Cope No Obama Sign
(See story at The Blaze).

As we looked at the coyote rifle, and as I mock-aimed an AR-15 and an AK-47, feeling them out on my shoulder, we talked about the possibility of an “assault” weapons ban. At that point, Nancy Pelosi was talking about reviving the ban that had been rescinded in 1994, with some new and worrisome restrictions, but not including outright confiscation. The Catron Kid wondered aloud if, should we be threatened with confiscation, we ought to hide our guns. SWSA employees responded that at that point, we would be facing civil war. We talked briefly about how Arizona would respond, and I allowed as to how we should have bought property at least 11 miles west, over the border in Arizona. The conversation turned to why Jews, Blacks, American Indians and Mormons should not be against gun control, and then we make our purchases and went on with our day. As we continued our errands, I realized that I reacted to the thought of civil war differently than before. I did not deny the possibility, nor did I feel regret that I might oppose my own government, because I now believe that my government has made me its enemy. It was another line in the sand that I had crossed in my own mind, like joining the Tea Party, registering Libertarian, and signing the Articles of Freedom. For the record, I will defend the Constitution against all enemies, but I prefer to do my fighting with the pen and at the ballot box. A shooting war is the last thing I want.

Four days later, when the news of Sandy Hook broke, and almost immediately the press began attacking the Second Amendment, we went on the offensive in the social media, correcting the obvious ignorance of the press and the administration, and making it clear why a so-called “assault” weapons ban would not have prevented Sandy Hook or anything like it. It was in a post on a social media site in which someone opined that patriots cannot be serious about the “need” for the Second Amendment, that we certainly can’t be thinking in “these modern times” of protecting our rights against our own government. And she referenced civil war. A commenter replied: “We are already in a civil war,” elaborating that the culture wars against the founding American values, against our liberties and against rural America amount to exactly that.
“We are already in a civil war.”
That statement rings true to me. It is not at all the same as during the late 1850's because this is not a regional battle, like the one that the Mason-Dixon Line defined. Neither is it about the false ideology of “state’s rights”--we know that only individuals have rights, and that governments have delegated powers--although I think it is time long past due for the States to enforce  the Tenth Amendment against the Feds. Nor is the object to deny freedom to others or to institutionalize racism. The culture wars—the war on our way of life here in flyover country—is about our individual rights, the ones that are threatened by an out-of-control federal government.

We are already in a civil war.
But it is not a shooting war. And I would rather that it never become one. However, this government has been whittling away at our rights and attacking our values for a very long time. Obama is only the latest and greatest threat in a century-long series of executives determined to stamp out individual liberty, make our Constitution meaningless, and aggregate power to himself.

Each of us, those who value life, liberty and property, must ask ourselves where is the line past which we must resist, physically if necessary? Each of us needs to know for ourselves where is the line in the sand. Where does tyranny stop? And at what point are we willing to give up our lives in order to preserve liberty for ourselves and our children?

As JD Longstreet (quoted above) wrote in Right Side News Blog:

To those on the political left and those pushing gun control -- in the childish naivete -- You need to understand two things: One -- Americans are NOT going to give up their guns! That's one. Number two is this: If you really want to begin a civil war in this country, continue your efforts to take those guns and you will most certainly have one, and I do not think you have any idea, any inkling, of just how ferocious and brutal such a war can be.
We know that Feinstein’s new, draconian measures are not about gun safety. We know that these power-mongers inside the beltway are using the deaths of 20 children for purposes of their own, and those purposes are aimed at our liberties and our ability to defend them.  We know that Diane Feinstein and Harry Reed are both hypocrites—both are or were gun owners who had concealed-carry permits—and they wish to deny the same to us. And we also know that in the advancement of tyranny and totalitarian rule, the confiscation of guns comes before the violation of free speech. An unarmed citizenry has no opportunity to resist the loss of freedom of speech and press and assembly. We know that these rights are already under threat by the Feds, who use pretexts such as security and political correctness to work their nefarious designs. We know that for many of us, the line in the sand may well be confiscation of our rifles. As Longstreet continues:
The government will, as Charlton Heston famously stated, have to "pry the weapons from their cold dead hands." Heck, the government might actually get away with a couple of such encounters before the backlash begins.
But it will begin -- and when it does, there will be hell to pay. In the end, it will be the end of the United States as we know it.
Understand. There are some states that will move to secede rather than obey federal laws that force their citizens to disarm. Other states will arrest and incarcerate federal officers attempting to disarm that states citizens within the physical boundaries of that state.

Understand. These things are already being discussed in states and counties where governments and sheriffs understand their primary duty is to protect the rights of the citizens who elected them. There are many places in flyover country where state and local governments understand that Tenth Amendment pushback against the overweening power-mongering of the federal government is long overdue. Arizona is one.  There are many states and counties in which constitutional sheriffs (CLEOs) take the SCOTUS Printz v. United States (1997) decision seriously, in which SCOTUS held that:

. . . Congress cannot circumvent that prohibition by conscripting the State's officers directly. The Federal Government may neither issue directives requiring the States to address particular problems, nor command the States' officers, or those of their political subdivisions, to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program. It matters not whether policymaking is involved, and no case by case weighing of the burdens or benefits is necessary; such commands are fundamentally incompatible with our constitutional system of dual sovereignty.

I agree with Longstreet that the Feds are dangerously out of control, and that their cheerleaders in the media and among people in the street are not thinking with their brains, nor are they aware of the cold reception of their totalitarian agenda (for our own good, of course) by the people who live outside of their vivid blue enclaves. The use of emotion by politicians and the media to whip the populace into mob action against citizens, unjustly and unrighteously threatening to violate a fundamental right by confiscation of firearms from law-abiding citizens, will create a response, but not the one the perpetrators envision. Mob rule is contrary to our values, our Constitution and our way of life. There will come a point of firm, determined resistance.

Minuteman Concord

We do not want civil war. We did not seek this war upon our values and our way of life. We want only to be left alone to live our lives. Many of us fervently wish that those who disagree with the Constitution as written, and who dislike our liberty, would remove themselves to a country that has laws and customs in keeping with their progressive values. As Sam Adams wrote:

If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.

These were strong words at the time, and they are strong words now. There is a point at which there can be no more discussion and no more debate about the encroachment upon our liberties. We have been coming close to that point over the past four years, as ordinary Americans have been waking up to smell the bitterness of a government that has long ago lost touch. We know that our elected servants believe that they are the masters, and want to discard the Constitution for a tyranny by the majority,  thus forsaking forever the republican values of liberty and individual rights written in that charter by which they were elected. We recognize that this government is now led by an executive who is unfamiliar with our values and our way of life. He has shown nothing but contempt for us, lying to us by whim, and using every event to dismiss our Constitution and erode our liberties. That he was re-elected by a narrow margin of the popular vote does not give him any other mandate than that assumed by every President of the United States: “to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”

There is war upon our way of life, against our liberties and our individual sovereignty. We did not seek this war, and thus far we have patiently used peaceful remedies to avert it. This attack is upon the heart of our values as Americans, and rural America is the place where it has begun, but it is not where it will end. This is a battle that we did not seek. But this is a war that we intend to win, in order to secure the lives and liberty of our children and their children. We intend to win it peacefully.
But we will win it at the cost of our lives, if necessary.

To those who intend to force me to surrender my arms, I say: μολὼν λαβέ!
And I am not alone.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Albuquerque Liberty Forum -- January 2013

Date – Thursday, 10 January 2013
Time – 6:00 – 8:00 PM
Location – Frontier Restaurant (2400 Central Ave SE)

Albuquerque Liberty Forum is a no-host dinner, with discussion of issues important to libertarians, capitalists (anarcho- and otherwise), objectivists, extropians, Tea Partiers and Constitutionalists.

We're currently meeting at the Frontier Restaurant at 2400 Central Ave SE, in Albuquerque, from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM.

The Frontier does NOT serve alcohol. As such, this will be an open-carry-friendly event (concealed and Constitutional carriers are welcome, too!)

Suggestions for speakers are welcome – let us know in advance if you want to address the group, so we can promote you!

Scheduled speakers will have thirty (30) minutes to make their case, then should be open to questions from the audience.

Unscheduled speakers wanting to address the group will have five (5) minutes to make their case at the chair's discretion, then should be open to questions from the audience.

Audience members are requested to ask questions of the speaker as opposed to making statements. All speakers will be considered to have consented to being recorded, including but not limited to audio or video devices, and for public distribution of those recordings (YouTube, etc.).

Handouts are welcome and encouraged. Assume that any printed material handed out is for public distribution.

Agenda for this event

  1. Round-robin introductions (if needed)
  2. Updates, notices about upcoming events
  3. Speakers wanting to address the group as a whole
  4. General discussion

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