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By: Char-Lez Braden

The Goal of any successful party is to obtain and wield political power.  For us, this is measured by these criteria:
* Electing Libertarians
* Electing liberty-leaning candidates where Libertarians are unavailable
* Influencing legislation and government policy

We shall attain success with these steps:

  1. Embrace that the foundation of liberty is the individual, and we build “Team Liberty” from the efforts of individuals
  1. Individually educate ourselves philosophically, politically and logistically on a continual basis
  1. Understand that each county affiliate is only one part of “Team Liberty”, and is most effective when it works in concert with the LPF
  1. Understand that the LPF is only one part of “Team Liberty”, and is most effective when it works in concert with county affiliates
  1. Oversee all levels and branches of government, and evaluate their impact on liberty
  1. Communicate the threats to liberty, and the joys of liberty, on a one to one basis personally in our daily lives
  1. Communicate the threats and joys of liberty, one to many, by all means such as the web, email, US Mail, signs, TV and radio
  1. Acknowledge all who respond; evaluate their level of interest; then act accordingly to convert them into allies, voters, members, activists and candidates
  1. Engage those that respond unfavorably with professional and reasoned positions to consider
  1. Coordinate with allies to advance our common goals whenever possible
  1. Generate new voters by embracing those that respond favorably and asking them to register LPF
  1. Retain current voters by facilitating as much internal communication as possible between voters and leadership via tools such as the newsletter, events, pod casts and every other means
  1. Turn voters into members by building relationships with them, and making the struggle for liberty personal and relevant to each
  1. Integrate members into their local county affiliates
  1. Maximize the value of our members by encouraging involvement via activist opportunities and financial contributions
  1. Develop activists by inviting members to participate in immediately useful tasks, having materials handy, with training and guidance ready
  1. Encouraging members and activists to become candidates to run for public office
  1. Training candidates in campaign craft
  1. Supporting candidates with campaign materials, and volunteers
  1. Returning party fee assessments to the candidates
  1. Supplying candidates with intelligence on the various positions and actions of the opposition
  1. Advise currently elected officials about Libertarian positions on legislative issues

blowhornBy: Joseph Wendt

The 2016 elections is an excellent opportunity for Libertarians at a State and Local level to raise as much money as they can. Fresh off the State Convention in Palm Beach, we were able to raise about $6000 in profit after all the convention bills were paid. Given the mind-boggling horrible and polarizing candidates the Repub-o-crats are about to nominate for President, this is the year Libertarians can actually improve the LPF’s financial situation and, possibly, give our candidates an opportunity to actually raise enough cash to be competitive. Unfortunately, many will do the stupid thing and try some “get rich quick” scheme to raise money, instead of doing the basics.

News flash people, we don’t have to re-invent the wheel or go in blind not knowing what works. There are many who have tried, and failed miserably. First thing you need to know, T-shirts don’t make f***ing money. Think about it: first you have to come up with a design, find someone willing to produce the t-shirts at a “reasonable” price, store the damn shirts, then try to convince people to pay $40 for a product that would normally cost someone $15-$20. Seriously, how many times has the LPF produced t-shirts and end up years later trying to sell the same damn t-shirts until they’re all gone? It doesn’t work. If you want to sell t-shirts, create an account with cafepress, and let people buy them online without incurring any upfront costs or storage issues. If someone asks you or your affiliate to spend to make t-shirts, please hit them.

The second thing people need to realize, you are trying to get people to donate to the Libertarian Party (national, state, local, I don’t care, whatever floats your boat). Organize events that clearly tell people they are attending a LIBERTARIAN event. If you believe that we need to organize non-partisan events and work with other groups that don’t want to be political to bring us together for a common cause, you’re part of the problem.

Republicans & Democrats organize events to bring people into their Party; they work with organizations that benefit their Party and bring people into their Party. If you want to organize an event with groups that do not want the Libertarian brand on the event, you are not helping the Party and you are hurting its fundraising efforts. You have to work with organizations that don’t mind working with a political group and understand that we want to promote our political brand. That’s how we attract new people and bring in new donors.

Finally, just do the basics to raise money. It’s not hard to write a fundraising email or letter to ask your members to donate a small amount of money. If the LPF asked its, what, 3000 members (not registered voters, I’m using members in this example) to donate $20, potentially it would raise $60,000. That’s basic math, that’s low cost, and look at the potential result. It’s not some flashy, over-the-top plan to raise a lot of quick cash; it’s a simple, straightforward plan that costs us very little, but potentially can raise enormous sums. If you can’t find the time to do something this simple and want some flashy scheme to raise cash, please admit you are stupid and leave.

2016 is the year we can grow and change our Party for the better, and raise the money so we can develop the resources to become an effective political force in Florida, DON’T MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY!!

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Dear friends,

There is no doubt the Libertarian Party of Florida has been invigorated from a very successful convention in West Palm Beach last month. With a presidential debate, the highest record of attendance ever, and a band performance by “Love Crime” with guitarists Ryan Ramsey and Brandi Alexandra, we are on a roll!

Joseph Wendt said in “Joe Rant: Money! Money! Money!” the convention wielded positive contribution results, and now is the time to use that momentum to raise money for the LPF local or statewide. He said the 2016 election year is a golden opportunity that begs for our attention. I agree with Joe!

Ryan Ramsey, who is the new Bradford County Chairman, said in his article “Prohibition and Gun Control” if we, as Libertarians, support gun rights then we must support the end of the drug wars. If there is one topic Libertarians can agree with it is support for the Second Amendment, but not all support legalization of drugs. Libertarians are adamant about resisting violence to effect political change, yet some are okay with putting drug users in cages and throwing away the keys. In this first part of a two part series, Ryan discusses the hypocrisy of supporting gun rights and drug prohibition.

If you haven’t heard the latest news, learn about it in The Quill.

Wildly popular Lyft and Uber ridesharing services are being strong-armed into paying government fees. With the service, independent drivers can be requested for pick up and delivery via Android and iOS smartphone applications. The Public Transportation Commission are now ticketing Lyft and Uber drivers for failing to obtain proper permits. The government’s position, not unusual, is to regulate the ridesharing services. Prickle contributor Lauren Anthony said in “Lyfting Liberty for Uber Safety” the PTC is misusing its role by whittling away at our freedom to make choices.

In “Hillsborough County Elects New Leadership” Brian Cole said one of Hillsborough County priorities is to shut down the Public Transportation Commission. Cole said the leadership is committed to disrupting PTC’s efforts to penalize business. Newly elected LPHC Chairman Kevin O’Neill said the commission is an overpaid, unnecessary, bloated government entity. The LPHC will attempt to force a nonrenewal of the commission on or before Oct. 1 when its authority is being reviewed in Tallahassee.

Bravo to Chairman Char-Lez Braden for outlining “22 Steps to Liberty” as a means to complete Party goals for us as individual members and together as a team – terming it “Team Liberty.” Since jumping into the fray last year, the Chair has provided a much-needed boost to the Party by being a good leader, a good listener, and a good peacemaker. Char-Lez has vision and is putting that vision into play.

In Liberty,

Raquel

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TheQuillTheEditor

Artwork by Gabriel Wozniak

Dear friends,

We made it to our Second Edition of The Quill, the official newsletter of the Libertarian Party of Florida. YAY! We received a mixed lot of six article submissions ranging in topics from Fair Tax to Super Tuesday. Not all of the writers are Florida Libertarians, however, all were tasked to create an article that Florida Libertarians would enjoy. I am confident you will! Please do not be confused by the title in Carlos Cunta’s “Common Sense Gun Control” story – it is meant to be misleading. Cunta is a gallows humorist and I am a huge fan, making “Common Sense Gun Control” the TOP story of the week.

In the First Edition of The Quill, I requested that y’all look very closely at The Quill logo, created by Gabriel Wozniak, because there is a carefully-placed, incognito Lady Liberty woven inside. I am pointing it out again, to see whether anyone has found her. To date, I have not received a single finder. Also, we are looking for volunteer writers, an associate editor, cartoonist and photographer. If you are interested, please advise.

Our very own, Rob Lapham, Libertarian Candidate for Florida Congressional District 2, and Region 2 representative to the Executive Committee, writes an article regarding his solution to the paradigm that is the Republican and Democrat Party, respectively. Lapham said he refuses to vote for the lessor of two evils this November, and prays that Florida Libertarians: Run, Run, Run for Office! Greg Bowen, former member of the Executive Committee, said Florida Libertarians want to live their lives free from a meddling government. From the left to the right, Bowen said political rulers are inherently oppressive, and are not needed. I agree!

Do Libertarian civil rights’ lawyers exist in Florida? YES, they do. Weekly contributor Lauren Anthony writes a story about Phillip Kuhn, Esq., an attorney licensed in both Florida and Tennessee who resides with his wife, Nannette, in Lakeland, FL. Kuhn said he was dismayed at the growing lack of “empathy” inside the courtroom that has effected the way people treat people. “What has happened in the courtroom is that it has lost its sense of civility and humanity in the process of justice.” If there is a no humanity between the officers of the court and the parties involved, then there is no reason to seek justice in that arena, because you will get none.

In sum, I have had an awesome couple of weeks putting together these stories and meeting new Libertarians in the process. Thank YOU Char-Lez Braden, LPF Chairman, for having faith in me. I have faith in you too. Carry on!

In Liberty,

Raquel

 

LegalizeFreedom

By: Greg Bowen

While the country breaks down and political rallies turn to violence, the people are rallying in support of their chosen sides. More vitriol is spewed forth, and the cacophony grows to deafening proportions. It saddens me to see libertarians choosing either side in all this. Some may just have sympathy for the candidates having to go through this.

There is no need to sympathize with either side. This is what we, as libertarians, have been warning people about all along. The violent masses are manipulated by the rulers into squabbling over the scraps their masters allow them to have. The system of control manipulated by power mongers is coming to its only conclusion, running the same cycle it always has.

As libertarians, we are the evolution of political thought. We seek a world without rulers. A world where the masses of people are truly free to think and act for themselves. A world where there is no centralized power to the scale that causes this. We d not want you in danger because any cult of personality has enough power to control millions of people and use their force to deprive you of your rights or your property.

The people on both the Left and the Right in the U.S. are responsible for this. Joining in with their violent power grabs, justifying their violent power grabs, or engaging in violence against them to achieve our political and social goals is the antithesis of libertarianism. We are here to offer a better way. Freedom. Liberty. No rulers. No oppression under the political ideologies of another.

The reason we disagree with both the Left and the Right is that at some point in their philosophy on the role of government, they believe that it should be used to impose their political ideology on others. They may have the best of intentions. They may truly think they just know better than you. That if only their ideas were the ones everyone had to abide by, everything would be just fine. But some point in their philosophy, it is okay for them to rule you, to deprive you of your freedom or your property, to claim ownership over you and your right to self determination.

The people who truly believe in allowing peaceful people to live in freedom without the aggressive force of government and all of its violent arms, from the military to the street level protest thugs, are here and offering a better way. A true philosophy of peace and freedom. Our battlefield is one of ideas. Our ammunition is offering you your freedom, and seeking to take over the government to leave you alone.

TaxationIsTheftRecently, I have become extremely annoyed by many in the LP that have become mindless automatons preaching the virtues of the so-called FairTax. Unfortunately, they are apparently not too bright. Yes, I am going to bad mouth the proposal and advocates within the LP, and rightfully so. Philosophically, a cardinal belief in Libertarian thought is that taxation is government sponsored THEFT.

Theft is theft, it doesn’t matter if it happens when you receive your paycheck or at the cash register, it is still government sponsored theft. The goal is to eliminate government theft, not find a more convenient form. Now, on to the more valid criticisms of the so-called FairTax, claims that the “FairTax” is fair are dubious at best, and an outright exaggeration at worst.

First, there is the claim that the “FairTax” will increase purchasing power. Unfortunately, this ignores basic economics and common sense. Here’s an example to demonstrate my point: Let’s say you, the reader, are building a house. You’re purchasing manufactured materials (bricks, rebar, concrete, electrical wires, plywood, 4x4s, etc). All of those materials would be taxed at the Florida sales tax rate of about 7%. Under the “FairTax,” you would have to add an additional 23% sales tax. That dramatically increases the cost of building the house, and increases the cost for end consumer/purchaser of that house.

Even though the purchasing power of the wealthy will increase and they could easily afford such a house, lower & middle income people would be priced out of housing market. The same would apply to the materials to produce cars, all electronics, even processed foods, as the tickle down effect of this tax regime will dramatically increase the cost of living without proportionally increasing the disposable income of average Americans. Rather than increasing the purchasing power of average citizens, it will create a new group of citizens who have to rely on a government handout in order to pay for essential goods and services.

Second, the very nature of the proposal requires the same amount of government meddling as under the current tax system. The claim that the “FairTax” would eliminate the IRS isn’t exactly true. Although the agency known as the IRS would be eliminated under the proposal, in order to enforce “FairTax” compliance, there would need to be some overbearing IRS-like government agency that would need to ensure businesses paid their portion of the FairTax and destroy the tax-evading black-markets that will pop up the FairTax system. To believe that a change in tax system is going the overall abusive and oppressive nature of taxes and government enforcement is naïve at best. Additionally, the “prebate” is nothing more than a grandiose scheme to handout convenient cash and create government dependents.

Why try to earn more, when Uncle Sam guarantees a check every month? The FairTax “prebates” can also be used to artificially stimulate the economy according to the needs of government, regardless of market forces. Why actually reduce government regulations that hurt the free market, when the government can just increase the monthly “prebate” stipend of every American to prop it up? The FairTax is too easy for the government to exploit.

The FairTax just doesn’t sound Libertarian when you break it down. It’s no better than the current system, and it certainly won’t reduce the size and scope of government.

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Joseph Wendt currently serves as Convention Committee Chair. Joe is from the Tampa area and is a previous two-time candidate for local public office, and a US Navy and Iraq War Veteran.

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You’re invited! Join Broward Libertarians for our monthly meetup in Hollywood. Complimentary pizza and drinks will be served.

Our guest speaker March 21 is Jaime Sherman, creator of Voluntaryist – The Comic Series, a libertarian-themed comic universe that pits the protagonists against government agents. www.VOLCOMIC.com

Jaime is also a content creator/manager for Anarchyball. Prior to focusing on his creative works, Jaime used his talents for several organizations, including the Federalist Society, Americans for Prosperity, The Charles Koch Institute, and Students for Liberty. He holds a law degree from Florida State University.

Don’t miss this engaging presentation! Liberty Meets Culture: How To Break the White-Paper Tradition

BONUS – The wildly talented Charles Rocha of That Summer will play a few songs for us 🙂 Enjoy: https://thatsummersong.bandcamp.com/track/wild-free

We hope to see you Monday, March 21 at 7 PM. Our monthly events are always free and open to the public. Share and invite some friends! Location: 1855 McKinley St. Hollywood, 33020

Join the conversation:
Group – www.facebook.com/groups/browardlibertarians
Page – www.facebook.com/lpbroward
Twitter – www.twitter.com/lpbroward