The New Hampshire Liberty Forum closed Sunday morning but the fun didn’t end until later in the afternoon. Over 350 liberty lovers converged on Concord to learn more about New Hampshire, the Free State Project, and activism already underway to begin to restore freedom in at least one state.
The highlights of the weekend easily were hearing Michael Badnarik and Ron Paul speak. I also was privileged to see John Stossel speak in person, though disappointed to discover that I already knew virtually all of what he was going to say.
I also saw Jim Babka of Downsize DC speak, and his speech, “How New Hampshire can change the federal government forever,” I wasn’t expecting at all.
Downsize DC unites people from all parts of the political spectrum around the idea that government is out of control and should be restrained. Its signature effort is the “Read the Bills Act,” which would require each member of Congress to read, or listen to, the entire text of every bill, before the member can vote yes on it.
What New Hampshire residents can do, Babka said, is to help put pressure on presidential candidates, all of whom pass through New Hampshire first due to its early primaries.
“Buttonhole each of the candidates, and ask them in public, ‘Do you believe Congress should read the bills they pass?'” he said at his speech Friday. “Politicians are not statesmen, not leaders, not men and women of courage. They are men and women looking for a parade to get in front of, so let’s build a parade for the Read the Bills Act.”
Jim Babka was also very helpful in person, and even went so far as to take time out of his schedule to get my Downsize DC password working again after it stopped allowing me to log in. The Downsize DC system makes it simple to contact your members of Congress and tell them how you feel about a variety of big government boondoggles.
“Jim does a fantastic job of keeping up with what Washington is doing to us,” said Free Talk Live radio show host Ian Bernard.
Speaking of Ian Bernard, I ran into Ian and co-host Mark Edge while they did two live shows from the event. The shows, like every other day on Free Talk Live, were full of the energy Ian and Mark always bring to their broadcasts.
I was able to take a few pictures of them doing their show, a fascinating thing to watch.
One of the things that really warmed my heart was seeing people in New Hampshire exercising their rights. Several attendees carried their firearms openly, and many more carried concealed weapons. The conference was easily the safest place in New Hampshire.
Finally, on Sunday, after Ron Paul’s closing speech ended around noon, a group of demonstrators decided it was time to show support for Ron Paul to the rest of the city of Concord. Taking all four corners of the downtown intersection in front of the hotel, some 15 people held up signs in support of Ron Paul, attracting an overwhelming show of support in the form of honks and several people pulling over to express their support or ask for more information on Ron Paul.
I got about 16 good pictures of this demonstration, which follow:
Aside from the above, I thoroughly enjoyed meeting new people and reconnecting with liberty lovers I’d already met the last time I was in New Hampshire. The Liberty Forum showed that the spirit of liberty is alive and well. The next Free State Project event will be PorcFest, held this June. It, too, promises to be a blast.
P.S. I meant to post this yesterday, but I was in such a rush that I forgot to hit the button. Sorry for the delay.