Saturday, December 22, 2007

Why vote for the Libertarian Party?

Let’s face reality. The two-party system is a myth; we no longer have a two party system. In name, we have the Republicans and Democrats. In practice, we have one party system where the politician’s actions belie that public spin.

The political battle between conservatives and liberals is no longer an issue worth discussing. Except for rhetoric, there is little substantive difference between them. The hype, scare tactics, and fear mongering used by both sides is merely for the purpose of raising money and electing people to positions of power. However, neither side has any real plans to change public policy or the overall direction of the country.

How long have we voters heard democrats and republicans warn us of the imminent dangers of the other party while assuring us that they and they alone can be trusted to save the country? It's the same redundant message every two years, and has been for as long as I can remember.

Increasingly, people struggle to understand the differences, if any, between the Republicans’ and Democrats’ stance on many issues. One can sometimes discern some ideological differences between the most conservative and liberal legislators, yet on the important role-of-government issues, those issues which historically have divided the two parties -- the legislative branch now falls into the "distinction without a difference" category. Indeed, while lawmakers identify themselves as Republicans and Democrats ideologically, their actions are, for the most part, indistinguishable.

We have been bombarded by the media recently with their so called “political defections” – these growing defections, are simply proof that there is no real difference between a republican and a democrat. The old retail store tag line really comes to mind when someone asks me what the difference between the two are – my response is “republican, democrat – It’s the same thing!”

Neither Democrats nor Republicans are making the tough decisions to correct inherited problems or enlightening the electorate. To get elected, politicians in both parties continue to take advantage of peoples emotional blind spots. They tell people what they want to hear. Neither party has been able to bring about effective change.

Elected Republicans and Democrats no longer seek power to advance their principles, or to help the people they represent, but simply for power. The R’s & D’s have alienated the people so much that the people have given up on the system – they no longer register with a specific political party, the second largest voting block in Kansas is now unaffiliated due to the massive discontent with both the R’s & D’s.

It’s time for “real” change. But it’s not going to happen by choosing a lesser of two evils. The Libertarian party offers you a realistic choice. You will not get real change by voting either Republican or Democrat. You will only get change if you vote Libertarian and send the message to our elected officials -- “Enough is Enough”.

Vote for Individual Liberty and Personal Responsibility --- Vote Libertarian.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Don't Quit

I had the following sent to me and I wondered - how many libertarian activists and leaders get oh so close to a major political breakthrough and then quit? I think we have had way too many. I also at times think that sometimes we will never get there and then I notice of someone (or a group) that is doing such good for political change and that new information gives me a positive motivational lift.

As I talk to voters around Kansas they tell me they are looking for an alternative to the republican (especially in KS) and the democrat parties. I really believe we are sooo close that we have to keep chipping away at the current system.

It's a great time to be a Libertarian in Kansas!


Don't Quit

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you're trudging seems all uphill,
When funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest if you must, but don't you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about,
When he might have won if he'd stuck it out.
Don't give up, though the pace seems slow -
You may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than
It seems to a faint and faltering man;
Often the struggler has given up
When he might have captured the victor's cup,
And he learned too late, when the night slipped down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out -
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are -
It may be near when it seems afar;
So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit -
It's when things seem worst that you mustn't quit.

Author Unknown

Saturday, October 13, 2007


Polls show that voters are frustrated with “politics as usual” and are taking a closer look at alternatives to the Democratic and Republican parties. The Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas will host a day of programming devoted to this trend on Thursday, Oct. 25.

“I’ve been struck by how many visitors to the Dole Institute comment on their feelings of alienation from the two major parties,” said Jonathan Earle, interim director of the institute. “I sense there is a lot of frustration out there that could lead to openings for alternative parties in the coming election cycles.”

The afternoon event will begin at 3 p.m. in the Simons media room and feature several academic experts discussing the history and potential for third-party success in coming elections. The afternoon will feature Lisa Disch, professor of political science at the University of Minnesota and author of “The Tyranny of the Two-Party System”, John H. Aldrich, the Pfizer-Pratt university professor of political science at Duke University and author of “Why Parties?”, J. David Gillespie, professor of political science at the College of Charleston and author of “Politics at the Periphery”, and Bob Beatty, professor of political science at Washburn University and expert on Kansas’ three-party system. Moderating the panel will be Jonathon Earle.

The evening event features a roundtable discussion moderated by Bill Kurtis and begins at 7:30 p.m. in Hansen Hall. The panel at the roundtable discussion includes David Boaz, executive vice president of the Cato Institute, and long-time Libertarian activist. The panel will also include Richard Winger, who has been a prominent national activist for Libertarian and third party ballot access.

Both programs are free and open to the public.

The Libertarian Party of Kansas (LPKS) applauds KU and the Dole Institute for providing a forum for alternate political party solutions. The LPKS has increased outreach activity and expects to step up local activity over the next election year. Recently two members of the party were elected to positions in their hometowns “We are gaining momentum across Kansas,” says Rob Hodgkinson, State Chair of the LPKS. “Kansans are ready for real change and we are ready to give them a viable third party option.”

Saturday, September 22, 2007

I like working OPH (Operation Politically Homeless) booths

I have to admit that I have what could easily be described as an unnatural affinity to working OPH booths. What do I mean?

I love working these booths. I actually enjoy meeting the people off the streets, giving the world’s smallest political quiz (WSPQ), talking about libertarian issues and explaining how they would make Kansas better.

I spent seven of eleven days in OPH booths, the first day in Olathe Kansas at the Old Settlers Days celebration. This 3-day event has an attendance of over 200,000 people. This year our booth was very well received. While people have been upset about the other two political parties, they are finally mad enough to start actively looking for alternatives. We have several new volunteers and I enjoy the talks I had with the R’s and D’s and how they are now worried we (the KSLP) will affect the 2008 elections.

The other 6 days I spent in an OPH booth was in Hutchinson Kansas at the Kansas State Fair. We have had a LPKS booth at the state fair now for over 20 years. The KS State Fair has an attendance of over 500,000 people in ten days. I have personally volunteered at the state fair only for the last seven years and this year was by far the best state fair I have ever worked. We now have a great location in the building we are in (the Meadowlark building). I personally helped over 35 people change their voter registration to the Libertarian Party. I gave the quiz myself at least 250 times. I had 14 people tell me that they are considering running as LP candidates in 2008 (six committed to running; however, we will see who follows thru).

New handouts this year helped to fuel the positive reponse we received. We have a new tri-fold full color brochure made for the KSLP this year and we had the new 8-page “Discover Liberty” tabloid that is being published by the Advocates for Self Government. Folks, this new tabloid from the Advocates is (in my opinion) a necessary (must have) handout to give someone after they have taken the quiz. We also have several new banners that are much easier to read and see from a distance that decorated the booth. The combination of the great location of the booth and the discontent of the voters made for a completely relaxed and enjoyable time to discuss politics in an off election year.

I am going to push, push, push for our local LP groups to really plan for OPH booth opportunities in 2008. Voters want a change, voters know that they cannot get change with the R’s & D’s; we must reach out and let them know we are active and willing to be that change! (Staffing these booths and working the supporting event parades with floats is one great way to support the LP)

I really have been recharged by the public and their current political discontent. I was amazed at how many people came up to me a said “KEEP IT UP”, or ‘WE NEED YOU” and even “THANK GOD YOU ARE DOING THIS”. I knew there was a simmering of discontent, however, I am now seeing the boil over starting and when people are upset they act! We are in the right place at the right time to help the public solve their problem with the government.


Sunday, August 19, 2007

Looking forward to Vegas & the Atlas Board meeting

This Friday I will be flying to Las Vegas to a face-to-face board meeting for the Atlas! PAC.

I always look forward to these national group types of LP meetings – It recharges my batteries (so to speak) about the positive efforts all LP’ers are trying to make in the world of politics.

The Atlas board members are from all over the country – that varied perspective is great because each area of the nation has their own political personalities; here in Kansas the “conservative” (read religious right) is very much attempting to take control of Kansas politics. It is the issue that is most discussed in the KS press right now. So, to get back to my point here – the east coast, southern, and west coast perspectives are actually a refreshing addition to my thought processes because these “alternative” ideas are actually thinking outside the box for Kansas politics and Kansas media.

I know better than to think only one plan/idea works to grow the LP. I know that that there is more than one-way to get our candidates elected. I hate to think that I get into a rut sometimes in my planning, recruiting and or my outreach efforts. The *getting away* from the KSLP, and into a national group setting, helps me look at my KS situation in a logical, detached way that I think is helping our growth overall. I love the KS people and the organization we have grown into in the last 2 ½ years I have been the chair, however we need to keep stepping it up in our efforts to reach the disenfranchised voters.

Add the fact that we (Atlas) are all on the same page of helping viable LP candidates try to get elected - it become a very enjoyable time for me.

See Ya in Vegas!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

If this doesn't make you proud to be a Libertarian .. .

Dear LNC members and State Chairs:

I was just scouring Google News before hitting the rack and came across the following story that is going to keep me up for another few hours out of sheer pride for our elected Libertarians.

This handful of Libertarians down in Florida remind me why we’re all in this. I am damn proud of and sincerely grateful for these guys.


Shane Cory


Government wants to give you money (honest)

By Charlie Whitehead contact

Monday, July 16, 2007

Your government wants to send you a check.

It’s a small part of your government, and it’s a small check, but members of the Lee Soil and Water Conservation District hope it sets a big precedent.

The district made headlines early this year when the five-member elected board voted to eliminate its one major expense and axe its Mobile Irrigation Lab. The board, driven by a new Libertarian Party majority, decided the service was too inefficient and too expensive.

Lee County commissioners considered saving the lab, but voted 3-2 against it. The Collier Soil and Water Conservation District stepped in to save the lab and now collects the grant funding from the South Florida Water Management District, Lee County and the City of Cape Coral to keep the program going.

“It’s the same people sitting at the same desks doing the same thing,” said Jack Tanner, chairman of the Lee district. “We sold their vehicles so Collier must be providing them.”

Tanner said once the expense of the lab was off the books, the district found it had around $100,000 in its accounts.

“It’s been building up for years,” he said. “Like many government agencies we have money in a lot of places. When we got down to terminating the money coming in we looked at the money we had and what to do with it. We figured the property owners could use it better than we could.”

The lab was eliminated after the Libertarian majority came into power at the beginning of the year. Tanner was already serving on the board, as was fellow party member Kim Hawk. Tom Clark, the Libertarian party chairman in Lee County, was elected in November.

Hawk is currently vice chairman of the county party. Tanner is treasurer. The district vote to return the money was 4-0, with one member absent.

Tanner said the district couldn’t figure out how to split the money between the hundreds of thousands of property owners in Lee County. The board opted to send it back $10 at a time on a first-come, first-served basis.

As of the weekend, 86 checks had been sent.

“I think people are filling out the form just to see if it works,” Tanner said.

There are conditions. You must be a property owner in Lee County, since past funding for the district came from property taxes paid to the water management district or to the county. Only 200 checks will be sent out per month, because after 225 bank transactions a month the district has to pay.

And you have to ask. To do that, go to

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Libertarian Lists Survey results

Libertarianlists has conducted a survey recently and they are still working on analyzing the data.

To look at the raw results for the survey, simply visit

There are also a couple of blogs that are discussing the results (gordonunleashed, freeliberal, Kn@ppster and lastfreevoice) and you can see from the “comments” on these different blogs that there are two divided camps in the LP. One that thinks RP is helping the libertarian movement – one thinks he is hurting the movement.

My personal take on the results was: OK, no surprises here.

If you are active at all in the LP (as I am), these numbers are simply a verification of the overall feeling that I have had anyway.

The info from this survey points out that LP’ers in general are excited about Ron Paul’s presidential campaign (duh) – and that the RP campaign has basically sucked the life out of all the announced Libertarian presidential candidates campaigns.

Many people are waiting for the RP campaign to play itself out before they really take a good look at the LP candidates. I understand that perspective. (I hope that RP pulls out early in the spring and does not pull a Kucinich and run a protest campaign all the way to the R convention)

No LP candidate has been able to break through the RP hype and that, to me, simply means they are not worthy as a national candidate. If they cannot break thru the Ron Paul hysteria, how are they going to compete against viable candidates from the R & D’s?

As a State Chair, I have met many of the LP pres candidates (and have read up on and will meet the others) and if I had to vote today to decide the LP Presidential candidate, I believe that “none of the above” would get my vote.

Maybe someone will step up in the next 10 months before the convention in Denver and fire up the base and pull the party together as a presidential candidate. Aaron Russo’s campaign in 2004 took off the January before Atlanta – maybe there will another person out there that can fire up a group of supporters (as Russo did) with a late start. We will see.

Friday, July 13, 2007

KS republican unity pledge

For those off you in the LP **like me** that think the usefulness of the non-initiation of force pledge that the LP uses is way out dated – a blogger for the Kansas Republicans (at least those from the right/wing-nut coalition) have decided that it is time for a new oath for the silly republicans that cannot think for themselves.

The party of Ron Paul is showing its true colors.

There are republicans in Kansas actually worried enough to list the Libertarian Party as one of the “not available to switch to parties”, which means we must be making some headway in the KS political scene, and that more republicans are considering the LP rather than the democrat party. (We did have one elected (R) official change to the LP in 2004 – Anderson County Attorney Fredrick Campbell)

As the republican party continues loosing its grip on Kansas politics, we will see more and more of the republican “purists” spout off in this fashion. It is only a good sign for Kansas LP’ers that the R’s continue to try to self-destruct.

Do you agree with me - Isn’t this oath just precious?


GOP Unity Pledge

I, _______________, promise never to abandon my present Republican Party affiliation for the purpose of political gain. The Republican Party, both nationally and domestically, was founded on sound and principled ideals, that include but are not limited to, personal liberty, individual freedom, responsive and citizen-based Government, life-affirming values, economic growth, strong and cutting edge military, low taxes and a mutual respect for fellow Republicans. Because of that, I will, at no point in my political or personal future, find cause to transfer my Party loyalty to any other affiliated organization.

I will not, at any future moment, become a registered Democrat for the purpose of seeking any political office. Additionally, I will not change my Party affiliation to that of any peripheral political party, such as the Reform Party, the Green Party or the Libertarian Party. Such a move would be not only opportunistic, it would be an unjustified trampling of everything that I previously claimed to stand for.

I care far too deeply about the previously espoused Republican ideals as well as the thousands of hard-working Republican citizens all over the State of Kansas to ever consider changing my political Party affiliation. I look forward to a life of citizen-serving, Republican political involvement. I thank the Kansas Republican Party, including all of the registered Kansas Republicans, for their years of service, good will and friendship.

I solemnly pledge to always be a Republican, no matter what promises are made by external forces seeking only to undermine the Republican values I stand for. I can have reasonable disagreement with members of the Republican Party; however, at no point will ‘Party switching’ or quitting of the Party be tolerable.


X __________________________________

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


by Chuck Muth

Cook-outs, fireworks, parades. For all too many Americans, that's what Independence Day is all about. Oh, excuse me. The 4th of July. Don't want to be caught promoting actual "independence" on a government-sanctioned holiday.

Still, for those who today celebrate the Declaration of Independence - NOT the Declaration of July 4th - it's important to reflect not only on the epic battle for freedom our Founders fought and won on our behalf, but the slow erosion of those freedoms ever since, an erosion fully anticipated by the Founders.

Thomas Jefferson, you'll recall, warned us that "The price of freedom is eternal vigilance." In other words, if we don't keep our eyes open and stay on guard constantly, we could well end up losing the freedoms way too many of us now take for granted.

And Ben Franklin famously replied, when asked what type of government the Founders had established for us at the Constitutional Convention of 1787, "A Republic, if you can keep it." The key words, of course, are "if you can keep it." Franklin, too, realized that eternal vigilance and hard work would be necessary to keep a government of the people, by the people and for the people.

So how goes our eternal vigilance these days? Not so hot.

Columnist Steven Greenhut of the Orange County Register reminds us that the government established by our Founders isn't quite the same government we have today. As you grill up those burgers and oooh-and-ahhh the fireworks tonight, you'd do well to consider the Founders' historical warnings and Greenhut's modern-day observations. Eternal vigilance demands it, lest we lose our Republic. From Greenhut's column this past Sunday...

"Clearly, by comparison with most countries, Americans do pretty well. There's no Gestapo, dictator or prison camps for dissidents. There's talk of building a wall at the border, but to keep people from coming in, not to keep them from getting out. Still, I think Americans would benefit from thinking more closely about the state of our liberty. Every few years, I write a column that updates the erosion of our freedoms. It mostly deals with simple, everyday stuff, but it's rather telling. Here is my latest installment:

"If I want to build a new house, I need to petition any number of government agencies and commissions, and can build only what they allow. Those agencies decide not only if my project conforms to some basic, easily understood rules, but whether it conforms to their own preferences regarding style, color, historical influences, size, number of stories, and so forth. If I ever want to add on or improve that house, I must wait until a government inspector approves it. If I am a developer, and want to build a larger number of properties on a site, I must fight for years to get approvals - and usually the final project will bear little resemblance in style or design to my original vision.

"If I want to start a new business, I not only will have to pay a large portion of any earnings to the government, but I must first get all the necessary approvals from myriad governments. I must pay my employees a minimum rate determined by the government. They may only work the number of hours set by the government. If it's a restaurant or business that serves the public, I must get a conditional-use permit - a long list of conditions that micromanage exactly how I run the place, from the hours to the number of tables, based on the whims of the commissioners who must approve the business.

"The government can, at any time, take my home or business and give it to someone else if officials, for any reason, prefer the new use to my use. The government can, at its discretion, steal all the value from my property by declaring it a wetland or by finding on it some 'endangered' rodent or other species. No compensation need be paid as long as I still have any use of the land.

"The government's officers can launch a 'no-knock' raid of my home (if they get a tip about, say, a drug deal) and can shoot and kill me if they say that they viewed me as a threat. Abusive federal agents or local police officers can, by law in California, keep all their disciplinary records secret. Those same agents can arrest me and throw me in jail for decades for possessing those 'drugs' that the government determines to be illegal. Meanwhile, the government maintains files on all my personal and financial data and will use them to assure that I pay the amount of taxes the government determines that I must pay.

"If I refuse to pay the full amount, I will become a ward of one of the biggest growth industries in the country: the government-run prison system. I am free to pay about half of all my earnings to the government, which will use those taxes to erect a multitude of offices and pay its workers salaries and benefits that are far more than most of us will ever earn. The government's 'child protective services' workers are free to take anyone's children away from them based on their discretion. Parents are then forced into a totally secret court system, in which they must prove their innocence rather than having the government being forced to prove guilt.

"We are all free to travel where we choose after government agencies search, poke and prod us. We can drive on government roads, pay government tolls, fly out of government-owned airports and pay for government-issued bond debt. We are free to pay for the government schools, which teach our children what the government wants them to learn.

"The government can seize our personal property and not give it back even if we are cleared of any crime, and even place us in permanent detention, without any hope of legal representation, if the government determines that we are an enemy combatant. The government can bomb any government it chooses, based on any shoddy pretext (i.e., weapons of mass destruction). We are free to speak and write as we choose as long as the government doesn't decide that we broke campaign-finance laws or engaged in 'hate speech.'

"The 18th century German poet Johann Goethe said: 'None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free.' Am I off-base to wonder whether we are careening down that road?"

As Yogi Berra might say, if Jefferson and Franklin were alive today they'd be rolling in their graves.

Kansas Libertarian Party Report for the LNC July 2007 meeting

The Kansas Libertarian Party has what I believe will be some wonderful opportunities to reach out to the disenfranchised voters in our state in the next three months.

The KSLP elected two people (in non-partisan races) to office this spring – Larry Manes, Allen County Community College Trustee and Mike Wilson, Saline County School Board Member. At our state convention in April, I was unanimously re-elected to be the Kansas State Chair for two more years of duty. Our state convention was well attended (especially for an off election year) and we had an attendance at the business meeting of around 35 members.

In the next few months, we are doing more OPH booths than we have ever done. One big event is the Kansas State Fair in September, where if I have my history accurate, we will staff a 10-day long booth for the 18th year!

We will also be working (thanks to Travis Nicks - Colorado Chair) the Vans Warped tour event when it comes to Kansas City on Aug 15th. We are also staffing at least 5 other (new to the KSLP working a booth) venues for outreach.

We are in the process of creating a new tri-fold brochure that is specific to the KSLP – the staff at LPStuff (Webb Garlinghouse business in Topeka) is the creative and printing help for us to upgrade the brochure we have today. The old one was 2-color piece on plain white paper – the new one will be a 4 color glossy brochure.

Earlier this year we started a “subscription club” donor program via the website (using Paypal). I believe that like all LP organizations that our donations are slower than I would like, however this new program is starting to take off for us. I am lucky (depending on your view I guess) that as a state party we were very small when I took over as chair 2 ½ years ago - so our expenses have been very low – while we are not cash flush by any definition – were are financially sound today.

I am very pleased that we are going to start a new “local” group in a rural area of Kansas; the inaugural meeting will be July 28th. This is a new opportunity for the KSLP in that all of our local groups today are in urban areas and this will be the first chance in a very long time to start to reach people that we have not spent much time attempting to reach. Having grown up in “God’s Country” I know we will do well as a political party once we get a foothold there.

We have already started our push to recruit candidates for the 2008 election and my personal goal is to shatter our record of LP candidates in Kansas. We are off to a good start in this regard – due to the Kansas government ethics committee (GEC) rules, I am not at liberty to announce names yet – I do however already have many verbal commitments and that give us a solid base to build the 2008 election numbers on.

One other thing I am working on – I have started the process of putting together a multi-state convention in 2008 for the 4 states of Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska & Kansas to be held in the Kansas City area. A date is still being pinned down and the other states must approve that date and whether or not they will participate. I have hopes that it will work as well as the 3 state convention we did in 2004 (lead by Bob Sullentrup, which means I have high goals for the quality of the event).

Rob Hodgkinson
Chair - The Libertarian Party of Kansas
Individual Liberty -- Personal Responsibility

"Defeat is not the worst of failures. Not to have tried is the true failure."

Sunday, July 01, 2007


The Kansas State Fairgrounds are in Hutchinson Kansas.

The dates will be - Friday September 7th thru Sunday September 16th.

I believe that this will be our 18th year to have a booth at the state fair!

More voters than ever are upset with the current R's and D's and their continued legislative failings at all levels of government. Are YOU ready to help continue our growth in Kansas and help build our continued inroads to change the political monopoly?

Two years ago, we had 2 people working nearly every shift of the fair and that is much better as everyone needs to take a break (food bathrooms etc.) You will also want time to walk the fair and see all the other booths, food, concerts and carnival action yourself.

I have some plans to "upgrade" our booth this year with new banners, brochures and other things.

For those of you that worked the booth last year - we have been moved down the wall from the location we were at last year (we will NOT be in front of the knife guy and his speaker system) It should be easier to talk to new people this year.

I really enjoy working the fair as you meet people from all over and very seldom are they rude! I have personally put in over 200 hours working the state fair in the last 6 years - I mean it when I say it is enjoyable!

I know it seems to be a long way's away, however it is coming quicker than you think --- plan to work at least a couple days & shifts and go to Hutchinson and help us out.

Start to let me know ** SOON ** when you can work this booth so we can fill the staffing schedule!


Rob Hodgkinson
Chair - The Libertarian Party of Kansas
Individual Liberty -- Personal Responsibility

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Atlas! PAC

We founded Atlas! PAC to provide Libertarian affiliates at all levels the practical, nuts-and-bolts support necessary to become an effective force in local politics. Because Atlas! is not a think tank, our focus transcends ideology, positions, and principles to focus on the mechanics and hard work of real politics and the knowledge and resources our affiliates need to win elections.

Atlas! will provide training on fundraising, a complete walk-through of how to become an FEC filer (which everyone must to do when they are effective fund raisers), voter registration, lobbying, and much more of the heavy lifting of successful retail politics. The mission of Atlas! PAC is simple: provide Libertarians with a desire to win elections the resources, money, and training to do so.

Atlas! PAC federal PAC supporting Libertarian committees and candidates by raising money to help give Libertarian committees and/or activists the following benefits:
a. Database Training
b. Fundraising Training
c. FEC compliance Training
d. General Campaign Training
e. Implementation of Small Business Initiative Training

Atlas! PAC has already sponsored people to attend the Campaigns and Elections 3 day seminar in Washington DC the first of June this year.

I am the advisory Board Chair for this Political Action Committee. There will be a board meeting in Las Vegas on the weekend of August 25 and I will be there to attend.

If you can help us grow by donating to Atlas! PAC please go to our web site to do so. The federal limits and reporting requirements are on the donation page.

Check us out and if you have any questions, there is a “contact us” page on the web that you can use.

The web site is at

Friday, June 29, 2007

Membership to the National LP

If you are a Libertarian in Kansas you need to go to the web site and donate at least $25 between now and December 31st. (the $25 level is the minimum that will work for the below)

The reason I ask that this happen is that on December 31st – the National LP will “freeze” the membership numbers to use for allocating each states number of delegates to the 2008 national convention. The more people that have donated at least $25 between now and December 31 will help Kansas have a larger delegation of voting delegates. With the 2008 convention in Denver (and a reasonable drive for us) – I expect that we will have a bunch of LP’ers from Kansas that will want to go as our “official” delegates to be able to vote on who our next presidential candidate will be.

Those of you that are current members -- check your membership expiration date. When I look at the member data, there are a large number of Kansans memberships that will expire in November and December. We need those people to make sure they renew – and we need those that have not done so to donate in the next six months.

We need all the LP’ers to donate soon so that we can have a large delegation – in 2006 (Portland) the total number of allowed delegates (national total) was trimmed – we were allocated 15 to Portland – under the new rules that would have been pretty close to 11/12 instead.

Help us – donate at least $25 to national ASAP it will help all Kansas LP’ers to be able to have a larger voting block representing us that will make a difference nationally.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Libertarian State Leadership Alliance

From My Friend Jim Duensing - LP State Chair Nevada

BTW - The LSLA is very much worth your time to attend - Plan ahead and be there - I will be!


2008 LSLA in VEGAS baby VEGAS!

A great place to live, but I wouldn't want to visit. Yep, I'm talking about Las Vegas. Home of the 2008 LSLA conference. Negotiations with Sunset Station are almost final. Here is what I can guarantee at this early date:

1) The convention will be at Sunset Station (which is actually in Henderson near the airport).
2) Over Presidents' Day Weekend 2008 (Feb 16-18)
3) The largest LSLA conference in LP history.
4) The most information in LSLA history. It will be physically impossible to see it all.

I view the LSLA or Leadership Conference as a gathering of party organizers and candidates all attempting to improve in their respective roles, to train replacement leaders, to build camaraderie amongst ourselves, to trade successful ideas, and for fun.

It is an event that every State Chair, every member of every Executive Committee and every county officer should go to. This is the event where we are free to discuss practical effective techniques and strategies to grow our respective parts of our entire organization.

At the 2008 conference, there will be four separate 8 hour tracks of information for everyone to learn. Presently, the four tracks of instruction are classified as

1. Candidate Training - including everything from dress, body language, the green zone, tone of voice, lessons for radio and television, debate techniques and the most effective method of expressing the Libertarian message ever devised. (I fear I may not be complementing this track

2. Treasurer / Secretary - this track will include information on how to keep acct. books, how to take quality minutes, how to file with the FEC, Roberts Rules for Conventioneers and other as of yet undetermined subjects.

3. Outreach / Fundraising - this track may include all of the following and more: creating a monthly pledge program, ballot base, legislative directors, how to write a fundraising letter, marketing / branding, organizing new affiliates / energizing longtime Libertarians into organizers and candidates, etc.

4. Institutional - this track is designed to discuss what Stephen Covey would call quadrant II activities - things that are important but not urgent. These consist of the most important problems and greatest opportunity that any organization or individual faces. Tentatively, this track will include presentations / discussions on an affiliate agreement, the work of the platform committee and bylaws committee prior to the May 08 convention, maximizing our use of the national database, etc.

These are obviously not set in stone. Once the details with the hotel are finalized, I'll be able to devote more time to planning these tracks in more detail. Also, if any of y'all have any good ideas, I'd love to hear them.

Also, because I want every county officer in every state to attend this meeting, the LSLA will be offering group discounts on tickets. More details on that will be available as soon as the ink is dry on the catering contract.

I believe our record attendance is around 100. I want to double that. 200 people is only 4 per state. My state brought 5 from NV to Orlando and 4 to Phoenix, so I know it is possible. And, we're a small state. We only have 5 electoral votes. 200 should be easy.

Imagine if we brought 200 Libertarians to a meeting designed to improve their ability to communicate our message and expand our party right before an election where the popularity rates of the other two parties is around 30% each. That spells progress period.

We can do it if each of you begin selling this meeting to all of your members. Push it to your general membership. When they get to Las Vegas and meet all the people working for our party, you'll not only have a new energetic activist, you'll have one who is well trained and who can train others.

This may seem like a gargantuan Leadership Conference, compared with prior years, but I think it is just a continuation of the direction we have been heading. In a few more years, I do not believe we'll be able to get by with only four tracks of information. And, the level of training of our organizers and candidates will require increasingly more nuanced and advanced training sessions. The classes outlined above are mostly what I would consider a 101 level political course. Before long we'll need 400 level classes.

The point of this email is to let everyone know the date of the event and to get all of you to begin selling this event to all of your members. By the way, to figure out what number of people you'll need from your state to get us to 200, take 40% your electoral college vote. This will give you a rough estimate. For my part, I know I'll bring more than two people. That should lessen the load on some of you and entice the rest of you to outnumber NV. I'm trying to outnumber CA, and from talking to the new state chair, Kevin Takanega, that may be difficult. However, I know I can beat CO. You want to go double or nothing on our other bet Travis? This time I get the odds - not because it's fair, but because you got 'em last time. By then Super Tuesday will be over and I can collect both bets in one weekend.

Thanks for suffering through another characteristically long email from me. I'll see everyone in Vegas in 08.

Jim Duensing
Chair NVLP

Monday, June 25, 2007

Van’s Warped Tour

The LPKS will be staffing an Operation Politically Homeless (OPH) booth this summer at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater for the Van’s Warped Tour on Wednesday August 15th. This event is a one-day gathering in Bonner Springs Kansas that brings a bunch of regional bands together in one place. Their web site is at:

I am interested in how the booth will do as this will be an 18 to 25 (in general) crowd. In the past when I have worked the OPH’s in Kansas – it is not the young people that generally stop to talk to us.

I am pretty good at working these type of outreach – however if anyone out there has ideas on how to reach the young people better – I am listening. I have had pretty good luck talking to High School Advanced Placement (AP) government classes and to college political science classes, however, I believe they are tuned into politics much more than the average student is. Maybe I am wrong on that assumption and if so, I will have a ball working this booth.

Kudos’ go out to Travis Nicks the Colorado State Chair for helping get us a booth at this event, I believe that Travis knows one of the organizers of the Vans group and he leans heavily libertarian.

I believe that this will be a gathering of very liberty minded people. I really look forward to taking the day off from work and meeting all the new people that can help us continue our LP growth in Kansas.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Ron Paul LP savior or saboteur?

I lean to saboteur;

I have debated with many people about the “Ron Paul effect” and my belief that if we let it - this “Ron Paul effect” will destroy the Libertarian Party. I see that effect starting in Kansas and nationally.

Our actions have consequences and we will pay the devil for these poor decisions to follow another party’s candidate. We have a former state chair that is trying to walk the borderline and has not even realized he has stepped over it. Here is someone that was intricately involved with writing the by-laws and state constitution and yet he ignores it (as a matter of convenience). Other “officers” are also backing RP. (Supposedly as the person and not as the “officer”) However, the reality is this; how does the media (or anyone else) separate the two? They don’t, so in crossing the line to back another political party candidate, you have betrayed the LP.

My reasoning;

First - Ron Paul is a Republican, and he is running as a conservative republican, not a libertarian republican. People that say that RP is helping the LP cannot validate those claims with any substantial evidence. There is not a surge in LP voter registrations, no surge in LP donations or any growth in LP volunteers that can be directly attributed to RP. The claims that RP is helping create positive LP media is false. RP was in KC and the only mention that had libertarian used as a word in it, was used only to say he ran for president before as an LP'er (and the intent of using Libertarian was as a verbal slight, not as a descriptive term) & there were no mentions of the word libertarian on the TV clips. RP only brings up the LP if he HAS to talk about it - he does not volunteer that info. The claims that RP is doing good in polls is also not true as they are internet polls that let someone stack the results - real polls have RP numbers at dismal levels.

I have no control over republican internal politics (and I would not want any control there anyway) The fact that RP has zero chance means I would rather spend my time doing something I can control and that is to work to grow the LP just like I have done for the last 8 years. I have no problem personally with RP - except that he is a republican and that is all I really need to say.

*** Second - National LP and State LP bylaws state that we cannot endorse another party candidate - PERIOD.

I will not jeopardize our status as Kansans need the KSLP as a third political foil. (the Reform party in KS is just a protest vote and is not an effective alternative)

*** Third - the presidential race is a federal candidate race and we (the LPKS) will not be actively backing the LP presidential candidate (whoever it turns out to be) due to the FEC rules that impose major reporting issues if we were to back a federal candidate.

Therefore, even if RP was running as a Libertarian presidential candidate we (the LPKS) would not/could not actively endorse him unless major internal changes happen and we become a FEC filing entity.

Folks, politics are politics and there are ground rules.

Keep politics separate from your personal feelings.

There is no Libertarian "savior"!

This is actually one of the best signs I have seen in a long time. We are starting to make a difference - if the republicans are willing to try to disrupt us with Ron Paul (and by getting LP’ers to waste their time trying to get RP in the R debates) they are getting desperate, and that means we are close to a major breakthrough. We need to stay focused on growing the KSLP and not playing into the republican hands by getting distracted and stopping what we have been doing.

LIBERTY is only what WE work to make happen -- Ron Paul will not do it for us.

-- Rob --

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Going to use this for more communication

I am going to try to start keeping this blog much more up-to-date than I have been.


This week I attended the Tri-county Libertarian meeting in Lenexa KS and they are starting to get very active in their outreach efforts. They have multiple county fairs and other events planned to staff Operation Politically Homeless (OPH) booths at. They will be working with other local LP groups to make these efforts a success – The Free State LP and the Libertarians of North East Kansas (LNEK) are involved in staffing outreach volunteers this summer also.

This is the time for the LP to be working hard to gain new people to the LP as activists and candidates. This effort today will reap many rewards when the campaigns start really kicking into gear in 2008. We need a ton of volunteers to help the candidates in 08 – the candidates running are the most effective way to get our message out and when we start getting elected – the “glass ceiling” we deal with as a “minor” party in Kansas will crack.

Interesting – our domain provider (for is being hammered by a DDOS attack. (DDoS stands for Distributed Denial of Service. A DDoS is carried out by instructing hundreds or thousands (or hundreds of thousands) of computers to send traffic to a target site or IP address. From a virus infection – you now see why you have to keep your virus protection up-to-date) – with the DDOS attack - the LPKS website is down and email to the domain is stalled (if not lost). I hope that this problem will be solved soon.

I will be attending the LNEK meeting next Thursday evening in Topeka KS. I look forward to meeting the LP’ers there, as I have not been to the Topeka area in a while.

More to come as I get into the “blog” mode.

-- Rob --

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

States challenge national driver’s license



By LESLIE MILLER, Associated Press Writer

A revolt against a national driver’s license, begun in Maine last month, is quickly spreading to other states.

The Maine Legislature on Jan. 26 overwhelmingly passed a resolution objecting to the Real ID Act of 2005. The federal law sets a national standard for driver’s licenses and requires states to link their record-keeping systems to national databases.

Within a week of Maine’s action, lawmakers in Georgia, Wyoming, Montana, New Mexico, Vermont and Washington state also balked at Real ID. They are expected soon to pass laws or adopt resolutions declining to participate in the federal identification network.

“It’s the whole privacy thing,” said Matt Sundeen, a transportation analyst for the National Conference of State Legislatures. “A lot of legislators are concerned about privacy issues and the cost. It’s an estimated $11 billion implementation cost.”

The law’s supporters say it is needed to prevent terrorists and illegal immigrants from getting fake identification cards.

States will have to comply by May 2008. If they do not, driver’s licenses that fall short of Real ID’s standards cannot be used to board an airplane or enter a federal building or open some bank accounts.

About a dozen states have active legislation against Real ID, including Arizona, Georgia, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming.

Missouri state Rep. James Guest, a Republican, formed a coalition of lawmakers from 34 states to file bills that oppose or protest Real ID.

Though most states oppose the law, some such as Indiana and Maryland are looking to comply with Real ID, Sundeen said.

The issue may be moot for states if Congress takes action.