Volume II, Issue 2
October 6, 2016  

Masthead image - with text, The California Libertarian Activist, 
					the official newsletter for activists of the Libertarian Party of California, text www.Ca.LP.org, 
					blue and grey with stylized Lady Liberty silhouette
The official newsletter for activists of the Libertarian Party of California



Thiemer offers value to Fairfield residents

Brian Thiemer (color photo)

Brian Thiemer for Fairfield City Council

In making the decision to run for Fairfield City Council, Libertarian candidate Brian Thiemer was inspired by the words of Roberto Clemente: "Any time you have an opportunity to make a difference in this world and you don't, then you are wasting your time on Earth."

"I want to make a difference in our community," Thiemer told the California Libertarian Activist.

There are two incumbents and two challengers in his race, for a total of four candidates vying for two council seats. Thiemer sees his campaign standing out on three key issues:

  • His opposition to a city wide tax increase/renewal;
  • He has received no contributions from public-sector labor unions; and
  • He is the only prospective councilperson residing southeast of Highway 80.

This year, the city of Fairfield is pushing a "vital" and "temporary" tax increase. Thiemer believes that with a campaign focused explicitly on liberty, such as his, more Fairfield residents will join Libertarians in standing against "this never-ending siphoning of money, time, and liberty." He explains, "Our representatives in government need to understand that we will not fall for a needless wealth transfer just because they put the word 'temporary' in front of it."

Thiemer likes to ask Fairfield residents whether the city is doing an exceptional job of serving its customers: the residents and small businesses of Fairfield. If councilmembers want their answer to be "yes," Thiemer says, "They should always be asking two questions: 'Why are we doing this?' and 'How might we achieve the same goals more efficiently?'

There's also a geographic aspect to his campaign. "I believe all of Fairfield deserves representation; currently there is not one councilmember that lives southeast of highway 80. I would be the only councilmember from the 94533 ZIP code.

Thiemer, who also serves as the northern vice chair of LP California, has a secondary purpose in running for city council: planting seeds of liberty. "This campaign is not only aimed at making my own community better," Thiemer explained, "but to demonstrate that the larger campaign for liberty is achievable. Social-media memes and Internet petitions can only go so far. In order to expand liberty in our cities, counties, and state, we liberty lovers need to study our school boards, city councils, and county supervisors--then start getting involved."

A lifelong Californian, Thiemer earned a bachelor's degree in finance and an MBA in Operations Management from Cal State East Bay, and now works in the field of business and supply-chain analysis. His professional background has informed his vision of smaller government. As he points out on his campaign web site, "there is no reason that the ideas and concepts used to improve private entities can not be used to improve public entities."

To that end, should he be elected, Thiemer has pledged to require government financial transparency and to never expand government, as well as to refuse to enforce civil asset forfeiture (or "policing for profit").

Campaign web site: ValueToThePeople.com

Election 2016

Starr deploys two campaigns at once in Oxnard

Aaron Starr speaking at Oxnard City Council meeting on March 29 2016 (color photo from video)

Aaron Starr addressing the Oxnard
City Council (March 29)

Aaron Starr is running for the Oxnard, California, City Council — and promoting a ballot measure that would roll back a considerable increase in sewer taxes — at the same time. The city council had enacted the tax hike in January without voter approval. In his candidate's ballot statement, Starr characterizes the 87-percent increase as "outrageous."

The synergistic campaigns have garnered lots of press, most notably numerous front-page stories in the Ventura County Star, as well as the on-line Citizens Journal. Starr founded an organization called Moving Oxnard Forward, and in March, filed initiative language with the city clerk, with the expectation that they would provide him the Title and Summary, which are required before signatures can legally be gathered to put a measure on the ballot. Instead, the City filed a lawsuit to stop his effort, alleging that Starr's proposed initiative is unlawful, in part, because it impairs an essential government service.

Starr countersued the City for the paperwork needed to gather the signatures, serving them with a lawsuit during a televised city council meeting.

Not to be outdone, Starr countersued the City for the paperwork needed to gather the signatures, serving them with a lawsuit during a televised city council meeting. Ten days later, Starr won his countersuit and the judge ordered the City to comply with the law. Starr later scheduled a "contempt of court" hearing — which could have resulted in elected officials being fined and sentenced to jail — before the City relented and complied with the judge's order.

The organized signature-gathering was completed with the help of 61 volunteers in only 16 days, collecting almost triple the number of required signatures to qualify for the ballot. Currently, the tax-reduction measure has been placed on the November ballot as Measure M. The City's lawsuit against Starr is still active, with Starr going through the discovery process and the City continuing to resist. The court battle has paused while everyone waits to see whether the voters will approve the measure.

The City Attorney recently drafted an "impartial analysis" of Measure M that arguably violates the California Elections Code requirement that the analysis be impartial, as it tells voters "that it is possible that the Measure will not take effect even if approved by the voters," and reminds them that the "City held community workshops to inform residents of the possible new rates" before enacting them.

Aaron Starr speaking at Oxnard City Council meeting on March 29 2016 (color photo from video)

With several web presences, including MovingOxnardForward.org, a Moving Oxnard Forward Facebook page, and his city council campaign's Facebook page, both Starr and Measure M have a high profile on line.

But the contest is not limited to the press and the Internet. At press time, Starr has raised over $70,000, placed yard-signs for his city council campaign at the homes of over 120 supporters, and participated in two candidate forums, with more to follow. He has ten opponents vying for the two open positions.

Starr's background as a CPA and financial controller for one of Oxnard's largest employers, an equipment manufacturer, lends credibility to his campaign goals of strengthening the city's economic base and helping local businesses thrive — bringing more jobs to the community — and of holding city officials accountable to reduce waste and bureaucracy while focusing on the most essential services that benefit residents.

Active in the LP of California since the age of 16, Starr was campaign manager of fellow Libertarian Sandi Webb's successful Simi Valley City Council race in 1990 and her re-election campaign in 1994. Now, at 52, he is the Region 4 alternate rep to the Libertarian National Committee (LNC), a former chair of LP California, and a past treasurer of the LNC.

Campaign web site: StarrForOxnard.com

LP Calif. logo minimalist blue silhouette of Lady Liberty 
					in a circle holding torch with the phrase


Recommendations on statewide ballot measures

At the August 6 meeting of its Executive Committee, the Libertarian Party of California considered the statewide propositions on the November 8 ballot, and took the following positions:

51 NO School bonds
52 NO State fees on hospitals
53 YES Voting on revenue bonds
54 YES Legislative transparency
55 NO Income tax hike extension
56 NO Cigarette tax increase
57 YES Parole for non-violent felons
58 NO Changes in bilingual education methods
59 No position taken Advisory vote on Citizens United repeal
60 NO Condoms required for adult film actors
61 NO State prescription drug purchases
62 YES End the Death Penalty in California
63 NO Extensive new gun control measures
64 NO Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA)
(While the Libertarian Party has been a strong supporter of ending marijuana prohibition for over 40 years, this proposition would do more harm than good, damaging medical availability, and creating additional criminal offenses and regulations.)
65 NO Directs grocery bag money to wildlife fund
66 NO Makes death penalty easier
67 NO Grocery stores can't provide plastic bags (referendum)

These recommendations are also posted on the LP California web site, at Ca.LP.org/measures.


Robson challenges state senator in two-way race

by Elizabeth C. Brierly

Honor 'Mimi' Robson (color photo)

State senate candidate Honor Robson, District 33

When asked by California LP state chair Ted Brown to mount a write-in campaign in the primary against unchallenged incumbent state senator, Ricardo Lara (D), Honor "Mimi" Robson seized the opportunity. She's now in a two-way race in the 33rd district, having survived the state's top-two primary — a system she had long opposed.

Robson's career as a structural engineer, restoring buildings damaged by fire and other disasters, to comply with new earthquake-safety, disabled access, and "green" standards, has exposed her to some of the biggest issues facing California. Costly regulations imposed on the buildings of homeowners, small-business owners, and others are driving large employers such as Toyota out of state. These standards create the perverse incentive to skirt the government's demands, which Robson believes defeats the otherwise well-intentioned purpose of such regulations.

Robson told the Long Beach Post, which featured her campaign in June, that her first priority would be to reduce or eliminate many of California's 200-plus regulatory agencies and commissions that are "strangling local businesses and hurting our local economy.... [Their] regulations...have the force of law, without any legislative oversight."

A client's situation illustrates her motivation behind her pledge to nullify bureaucratic regulations. A long-standing, family-run restaurant was damaged by a fire. While their insurance policy covered the cost of rebuilding, upgrading to comply with today's stringent building codes and other standards was not covered.

So instead of family savings going to cover their lost income and living expenses during reconstruction, it would have to go toward the upgrades. The hardship from the loss would have been far easier for the family to bear had it not been for the terrible cost of complying with bureaucratic regulations imposed on them.

"It doesn't cost anything to just reduce regulations," Robson pointed out. In striking contrast to her opponent, she would apply that principle also to health care.

"In 2014, [Lara] proposed extending full MediCal coverage to all — regardless of citizenship," she explained. "That bill died, so instead he proposed the Health for All Act (SB 1005), which asks the federal government for an exception so we can extend Obamacare (Covered California) to even those lacking legal status. The governor signed it into law, but the feds aren't likely to say 'OK' to that, so Lara's bill is symbolic at best."

Her free-market solution? "Already in other states, pharmacies can establish clinics which charge anywhere from $4 and $40 for an office visit — with no insurance. Anyone can afford that, regardless of legal status, and it's not costing the state anything. In Calif., you must have one M.D. supervising every four nurse-practitioners, a regulation other states don't impose. That's what makes it cost so much here," explained Robson. "Just change that one regulation."

Robson's campaign manager, Joanne Beverly, announced in a press release Robson's appearance at a Huntington Park city council meeting in July, where she proposed that very solution for health care for the poor. Robson has found residents there receptive to her views on the economy and prosperity, with the unemployment rate 11.8 percent, and half the city's population being immigrants.

Robson vows also to "never expand big government." She's appalled by California's neglect of infrastructure, especially when contrasted with exorbitant spending on frivolous projects. The 1970s drought should have been a call to action, she contends. "We have an ocean we could be using for desalination," she pointed out. "The water pipes in Los Angeles are so old that one breakage can lose hundreds of millions of gallons per hour. The American Society of Civil Engineers gave us deplorable grades, because we just aren't doing anything for our infrastructure, yet we're spending money on 'green' summits, and on high-speed rail (HSR) — an easy target, because it's so ridiculous — and huge," she lamented, adding, "It is never going to be built; no one's ever going to ride on it; and it hasn't even had one piece of track laid — but it has already cost a billion dollars."

Robson opposes adding to the state's burgeoning debt and vows to never raise taxes.

Robson opposes adding to the state's burgeoning debt and vows to never raise taxes. "What I'd propose is, if we have this money, let's shift it to something that will bring business and help the free market, and pay for itself in the end. [Taxpayer-funded infrastructure] may not be a completely Libertarian idea, but I would never propose or vote for increasing taxes to fund it."

"We're told we have a 'balanced budget' thanks to [Gov.] Jerry Brown and all the tax increases of 2012. Except: we're $400 billion in debt because of the bond issues and unfunded pensions. Look at all the bonds and sales taxes on our November ballots — we need to not do that.

As for Robson's prospects of winning the seat, she said that while she's a long shot — Lara had raised more than $1.5 million before he realized he wouldn't be running unopposed — the more she meets constituents, the more confident she has become.

"Lara voted for every one of those gun bills — even the ones that Jerry Brown vetoed, the really ridiculous ones," she said. "At one of the meetings I attended, I found there's a large contingent of Pink Pistols members, for whom Lara's openly gay status is no advantage."

Religious freedom groups have "recently given [Lara] a lot of negative attention over his SB1146 ["Discrimination: postsecondary education"], so he gutted the bill and plans to reintroduce it next year [if] he is re-elected.... I heard that the only reason he did that was that he's not running unopposed."

Honor Robson campaign logo - red white blue lettering with black background(color graphic)

In 2012, Lara's alternative-party opponent also ran a write-in campaign with no other challenger, but did no campaigning, yet won 20 percent of the vote.

This year, Robson is turning up the heat.

Campaign web site: HonorRobson.com

A version of this article also appears in the Oct. 2016 issue of LP News.


Baron Bruno takes action

by Sandra Kallander

Baron Bruno color headshot, blue shirt, smile (photo)

Baron Bruno for State Assembly, District 62

First-time candidate Baron Bruno, of Marina Del Rey, is running a serious and professional Libertarian campaign for State Assembly. He's building on his experiences in business, including commercial real estate sales, using the same philosophy he uses there: treating people with respect, keeping his word, collaborating, working hard and getting things done, solving problems.

Driven by a sense of urgency since the World Trade Center attack and the loss of 658 of his co-workers at Cantor Fitzgerald, Bruno answered the call when Ted Brown, Chair of the LPC, asked him to run in District 62, an area stretching from Venice Beach to El Segundo, including LAX. He says we're heading in the wrong direction, and the bombing reordered his priorities. His campaign website opposes "big government," in favor of "Choice, Respect, Accountability, Empathy, & Love." In person, he emphasizes the "Love."

The district lies between Santa Monica and Manhattan Beach, the heart of the California youth and health culture, famously tender-hearted, and home to many who work in entertainment, gaming, technology, and related services, so there Bruno finds public support not only for "love," but for ending the state mandate to add fluoride to the drinking water. He's no shrinking violet about freedom, either: his education platform calls for complete educational freedom, including an end to the mandate that children attend school or that taxpayers be required to fund it. He lists numerous ways in which we should be able to exercise educational freedom.

Bruno derides hypocrisy, such as applying a double standard to pensions and health care for state and federal workers and officials, versus the mandates and limited options offered others; he would insist lawmakers live by the same rules they would impose on the rest of us. He also favors ending the disparity between the drinking age and the age at which soldiers serve their country — if they're old enough to go to war, they're old enough to be responsible for what they drink.

Initially, when Bruno filed to run as a write-in candidate, the only person running was the freshman incumbent, Democrat Autumn Burke, daughter of a politically influential former congresswoman. But things didn't go according to plan. After Bruno filed, so did a Republican, at the last minute.

According to the Sacramento Bee, "The write-in candidates Baron Bruno, a Libertarian from Marina del Rey, and Republican Marco Antonio 'Tony' Leal, a Republican from Los Angeles, each received exactly [32] votes in last month's primary election in the 62nd Assembly District, final results show."

One vote could have made the difference, here.

When the two challengers tied for second with 32 write-in votes each, they became members of the only three-way statewide race since top-two contests began being mandated under California law in 2010. One vote could have made the difference, here.

The Republican is not running an active campaign, while Bruno has a nonstop schedule of fundraising and speaking engagements, a staff that includes help from media & marketing manager Bren LaRoque, who is keeping track of the campaign finance paperwork, and campaign manager C. Douglas Conlan, who literally wrote the book, The Guide to Winning Elections (2013).

Bruno isn't one to daydream his way into office; he has raised over $40,000 so far (including his own contributions), and acquired T-shirts for volunteers and thousands of handouts for participation in such events as the 32nd annual Abbott Kinney Festival in Venice on Sept. 25, which typically draws more upwards of 100,000 adults and families.

Baron Bruno campaign logo (photo)

In August, he attended the benefit that Drew Carey hosted for Gary Johnson, and earned Johnson's endorsement and support. The Johnson campaign is sharing its 420 southern California volunteers with the Bruno campaign, planning many joint campaign events, delivering on the Johnson–Weld promise made at the Libertarian National Convention, to help out the LP's down-ticket candidates' races. In late September, Bruno met with Johnson's vice-presidential running mate, Gov. Bill Weld, securing his endorsement as well.

Campaign web site: BrunoForAssembly.com


Everling answers the call in Assembly race

by Sandra Kallander

Mike Everling (color photo)

Mike Everling for State Assembly, District 51

It's just before the June 2016 primary. All it might require is one vote — his own — and despite California's "top two" open primary, Libertarian Mike Everling's name could be appearing on the ballot in November, as a candidate for State Assembly in District 51.

So said Ted Brown, Chair of LP California, when he called Everling to ask him to run. It appeared as though the incumbent, Jimmy Gomez (D), would be unopposed, unless someone was to step in with a last-minute write-in campaign. Everling went to the county registrar to fill out the form, and then started the process of collecting the petition signatures to become an official write-in candidate.

The first time Everling had answered Brown's call was in 1989, when Brown asked the brand-new LP member to run for an assembly seat in his then neighborhood. Fast forward, and Everling has now run for Assembly three times and for U.S. Congress twice, but this latest run is the first time since the passage of "top two" — allowing only two candidates to face off in November — that he would attempt to do so in his current, redrawn district. District 51 encompasses a swath of Los Angeles County from Eagle Rock to east L.A. and downtown, and from Echo Park toward West Hollywood.

Everling needed 40 valid petition signatures to become an official write-in candidate. He collected about half of them himself, starting with registered voters living in his own neighborhood. Volunteers gathered the remainder of the 44 signatures collected, so he was in the running.

In the primary, all he had to do was vote for himself, and as one of only two options, inevitably place either first or second. Everling received seven write-in votes — counting his own — and made the cut.

Other Libertarian activists, skilled in creating web presences, went to work on a campaign site, organized by Boomer Shannon, membership chair and at-large representative to the LPC Executive Committee (coming soon). Dave Peters, another LP activist volunteered his services to Everling and other candidates as treasurer, the position which deals with the regulatory "red tape" of campaign financing.

Thanks to their efforts, Libertarians and all the other voters in the district will actually see two names on the November ballot, and have a choice to make.

Thanks to their efforts, Libertarians and all the other voters in the district will actually see two names on the November ballot, and have a choice to make. Everling stands ready to appear in candidate fora, and to answer press inquiries, representing the Libertarian Party, and its core values of self-ownership, property rights, and nonaggression.

Everling has made a campaign pledge to work diligently to reduce the size, scope, cost, and authority of state government. He proposes ending regulatory and legal barriers that perpetuate homelessness and joblessness, and taking measures that would create opportunity for those seeking work, especially in neighborhoods negatively impacted by large concentrations of unemployed and homeless people, a problem common in his district.

Should he be elected, Everling will vote to remove government barriers to work opportunities, such as state wage controls and other mandates that make it illegal for a worker to accept an entry-level job — even if they want to and the job meets their needs — if it falls below a certain wage or does not include mandated "fringe" benefits. He will also promote rehabilitation and resources, rather than incarceration, for those with mental-health and substance-abuse needs.

Campaign web site: EverlingForAssembly51.com


More Libertarian races in California: State legislature

In California's "top two" open primary election on June 7, alongside Baron Bruno, Mike Everling, and Honor Robson, two other Libertarian candidates for state legislature placed second in their races. So five incumbents from the state legislature must each share the November ballot with a Libertarian alternative.

Running for State Assembly are Libertarians Donn Coenen of Nevada City (District 1) against incumbent Brian Dahle (R), and Ken Anton of Elk (District 2) against incumbent Jim Wood (D).

Donn Coenen
Ken Anton
Donn Coenen (color photo) Ken Anton (color headshot)
State Assembly, District 1
State Assembly, District 2

More Libertarian races in California: Local level

The LP of California also has members running for these offices at the local level, where we can and do exert a measurable effect on public policy.

Susan Marie Weber, an elected Libertarian city councilmember in Palm Desert since 2012 who served as mayor in 2015, is running for re-election there. Weber is also owner of a small business management consulting firm, and teaches college-level accounting.

Lois Garcia and Harland Harrison are running as a slate for two seats on the Sequoia Healthcare District (SHD) board, to fulfill fellow San Mateo Libertarian and SHD director Jack Hickey's 14-year mission to close the obsolete district, which no longer owns or operates Sequoia Hospital. (See Hickey's web site for more information: xSHCD.com.)

John Roberts, a financial professional from Piedmont, is running for East Bay Regional Park District's Ward 2, with a goal, in part, of informing the public of all park decisions "because we all fund its function through our tax dollars."

Lois Garcia
Harland Harrison
John Roberts
Susan Marie Weber
Lois Garcia (color photo)
Harland Harrison color photo
John Roberts  (color photo)
Susan Marie Weber (color headshot)
Sequoia Healthcare District
Sequoia Healthcare District
East Bay Regional Park District,
Ward 2
Palm Desert
City Council

Please consider volunteering or contributing to these Libertarian campaigns.

For updates on Libertarian candidates running for office in California this election season, visit our Candidates web page, at Ca.LP.org/candidates.

You, too, can run for office

Inspired by these California Libertarian candidates?
Get started now on your 2018 campaign for elective office!

The combination of Libertarian races being run from the presidential race all the way down the ticket — in every election, consistently — is what lays the groundwork for Libertarian principles to reach both voters and policymakers.

To find out about running, either fill out the form at Ca.LP.org/run-for-office, or contact Ted Brown via e-mail at TBrown@Ca.LP.org.

If you're not ready to serve as a candidate, but would like to learn how it's done, step by step, volunteer for a current Libertarian campaign in your area. Connect with them through your local LP; see the county contact list in this issue.

Whatever role suits you best in our battle for individual freedom, thank you for being a part of the Libertarian movement.


You can still make a difference to Johnson–Weld 2016

Front and back image of door hanger for Johnson campaign (image)

Brochures, door hangers, bumper stickers, yard signs, T-shirts, and other campaign materials are available at: LPStore.org

Sheer disgust at the dominant parties' nominees, coupled with the credibility of the LP presidential ticket of Govs. Johnson and Weld, means that 2016 is bringing Libertarian activists opportunities the likes of which the LP has never before seen.

If you have not already volunteered for the campaign and found something interesting to do, do not miss this opportunity! Sign up today: JohnsonWeld.com/volunteer

The Johnson–Weld team has inspired thousands of supporters and volunteers in California. As a group, these supporters are highly sympathetic to libertarian ideas and far more willing to engage in activism, now and in the future, than are members of the general public. Not only that, the campaign team has invested in tools to leverage the power of our activist base. The impact of these tools will depend largely on the extent to which our members and sympathizers make use of them.

As an example, one of the tools is an application that enables activists all across the country to participate in phone-banking, on behalf of the campaign, conveniently and securely, at their choice of time and place. All the volunteer needs is a computer with an Internet connection, a phone of any kind, and very basic telephone skills. Training takes only a few minutes, and spreading the word is fun. There are also tools for contacting local activists for events and recruiting, and for walking neighborhoods to contact likely voters.

Although election day is fast approaching, there is still time to connect with volunteers and supporters in your local area, and make a difference. If there is no Libertarian group in your area, you can form one by inviting local volunteers, with only a little effort. Forming local teams will make a difference in this campaign, and will grow our organization and skillset for the future.

Volunteers are standing by to help you connect. See the sidebar (below) for how to get hooked in. Volunteer today!

Be a part of the historic
Johnson–Weld 2016 campaign!

Actions you can take:

  • Distribute door-hangers in your neighborhood
  • Wear a Johnson 2016 T-shirt to a rally
  • Reach voters through the phone-banking app


Find out more:
Visit JohnsonWeld.com or check in with the campaign's California directors via e-mail at California@ Johnson Weld.com.

Jonathan Jaech black and white photo Robert Imhoff black and white photo
Jonathan Jaech,
Campaign Director
Robert Imhoff,
Volunteer Director


Don't waste your vote! (especially in California)

by Joe Dehn

Presidential nominees' comparison chart - Johnson Clinton Trump photos at top, 
						grey & yellow grid with text (graphic image)

Presidential candidate comparison chart (downloadable flyer)

Readers who find that the author's points resonate with them, whether for moral or practical reasons — or both — are encouraged to make those points when communicating with voters about this year's presidential election. The candidate comparison guide pictured may also be a handy outreach tool. —Editor

Here it comes again, as it does every election: people are warning you not to "waste your vote by casting your ballot for the Libertarian candidate." They tell you that your vote won't make a difference, or try to scare you into voting for "the lesser of two evils" and tell you that if you don't do as they say you will "really be voting for" the other candidate (who is, in their opinion, a worse evil).

This advice is completely backwards. As more and more people are realizing, both Trump and Clinton are horrible choices for president. Some of the reasons they are horrible are the same, and some are unique to each candidate, but they both add up to bad. Even if your vote could somehow help one of them, we will all lose if either of them is elected. On top of that, your vote here in California can't possibly make a difference in which one of them ends up in the White House. The Democrat always wins the popular vote in California, and will get all of California's electoral votes as a result — unless the election is a landslide in the other direction nationally, in which case the election will have been decided before the polls even close here.

But there is an even more important reason why their advice is wrong. If you give in to their bullying, not only won't you be making any real difference, but you will be giving up the chance to do something useful with your vote. They never mention that, of course.

First, by casting your vote for Gary Johnson, you are increasing the chance that he could actually win — no matter how unlikely that prospect may seem right now. How are you going to feel if Gary Johnson loses California by one vote? Or even your county? Or even if he comes in third when he could have come in second? Or if he misses any significant milestone you think he might reach (e.g., 15 percent), by one vote? Yes, it's pretty unlikely that your one vote will be the one that makes the difference, but the chance that your vote in California will make a difference in whether Trump or Clinton wins is even lower. And if even the people who see Gary Johnson as the best candidate don't vote for him, then of course he "can't win." Don't give in to this self-fulfilling prophecy, which serves only to support the establishment parties.

Your vote for Gary Johnson also sends a message that you are not satisfied with the two better-known candidates. That they are not acceptable to you. Both Trump and Clinton are, according to the polls, disliked by a majority of the voting population. Don't let that message get lost on Election Day!

Your vote for Gary Johnson...lets everybody see that support for Libertarian ideas is growing. This is very important for the long-term future of our country.

Your vote for Gary Johnson also lets everybody see that support for Libertarian ideas is growing. This is very important for the long-term future of our country. This will make voters more interested in finding out about our ideas, and maybe even convince some of the politicians in other parties to start supporting our ideas on particular issues. You can't accomplish either of those things by voting for any other candidate this year, or by staying home and not voting.

Your vote for Gary Johnson will also make it a lot easier for future Libertarian candidates to be taken seriously. Whoever runs as our candidate for president in 2020, the media will be using Gary's vote total as a measure of how seriously to take him or her.

Finally, and perhaps of most importance to the prospects for our liberty over the next four years if Gary doesn't win, your vote can help deny whoever does win the appearance of a "mandate." If either Trump or Clinton gets a majority of the popular vote, even by just a few percent, he or she will claim that "the voters have spoken," and take that as support for whatever crazy liberty-destroying ideas they propose. But if the vote totals are something like 45 percent to 40 percent, with Gary at 15 percent, the winner won't be able to say that. He or she will have a harder time convincing the general public, the media, and especially the congress to go along with those proposals. Every vote for Gary Johnson, now, will make it easier to limit the damage that our country will suffer, for years to come.

You have only one vote. You would be foolish to give up the opportunity to use it in a positive way, especially here in California where there is no plausible scenario in which casting your vote for either Clinton or Trump will make any difference at all. That would be the real "waste" of your vote.

Joe Dehn black & white headshot (photo)

Joe Dehn

Don't waste your vote — cast it for Gary Johnson!

Joe Dehn is chair of the LP of Santa Clara County. He served seven terms on the Libertarian National Committee, and he also created the Libertarian Party's very first web site.

Reprinted with the author's permission. Originally published in the September 2016 issue of Santa Clara Libertarian Update.

Election 2016

Tactical outreach at Johnson–Weld booth in Silicon Valley

Scene from PokeStop (color photo)

Photo: Joe Dehn

Robert Imhoff (rear, right) explaining the Johnson campaign to a booth visitor, while his daughter hands a Johnson 2016 water bottle to another, at the PokéStop booth (Aug. 20)

Volunteer Robert Imhoff of the
Johnson–Weld 2016 campaign spearheaded deployment of an outreach booth on the afternoon of Aug. 20, strategically situated in downtown San Jose, the "capital of Silicon Valley." He chose the location and time to take advantage of the Pokémon Go video-game phenomenon, in which players are drawn to real-world locations, using their mobile devices, to locate, capture, battle, and train virtual creatures called Pokémon.

The San Jose "Pokéstop" campaign team, which included Santa Clara County LP chair Joe Dehn, met 20 passersby already planning to vote for Gov. Johnson. They also:

  • distributed 10 Johnson–Weld 2016 yard signs and 250 campaign flyers;
  • Scene from PokeStop (color photo)

    Photo: Jennifer Imhoff

    Joe Dehn and Robert Imhoff at the
    PokéStop booth in
    San Jose (Aug. 20)

  • registered three new voters, and
  • gave away 200 Gary Johnson-labeled water bottles.

Dehn posted photos of the event at the LP chapter's Facebook page, Facebook.com/lpsantaclaracounty.

Imhoff now serves as the campaign's California state volunteer director.

His wife, Jennifer Imhoff, is the campaign's communications director for California. She is organizing a
Johnson–Weld phone-banking event in San Jose on Sunday, October 22, from 11 to 4 o'clock.

Jennifer advises, "Bring a phone and laptop or tablet if you have one. We will provide the rest. We will also be distributing campaign materials and swag!"

Scene from PokeStop (color photo)

Photo: Joe Dehn

Jennifer Imhoff at the Pokéstop booth in San Jose (Aug. 20)

To volunteer, contact her by e-mail at JenniferImhoff@JohnsonWeld.com, or by phone at (408) 660-5340.

Don't live or work in the SJ area?
Find events in your own area by plugging in your ZIP code at JohnsonWeld.com/supporter_events.


Rail commuters learn about Johnson and the LP in Contra Costa

Contra Costa County Libertarians (CCCLP) and friends are building relationships with concerned voters and volunteers, while working to raise name recognition for Gary Johnson's presidential campaign, in the San Francisco east bay area.

Member Kevin Moore had earlier taken upon himself to organize a Johnson rally-viewing meet-up at a pub in Walnut Creek, which was also posted on the JohnsonWeld.com events page. This attracted a couple of new gung-ho-for-Gary activists, inspiring CCCLP to purchase handouts and signs. And the next thing you know, they were waving "Gary Johnson for President" signs at Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) stations.

Sandra Kallander handing out leaflets at BART station (color photo)

Event organizer Sandra Kallander handing out Johnson-Weld leaflets at BART (Sept. 28)

To organize this required obtaining a permit from BART for "expressive activity." This proved to be surprisingly easy: instead of individual permits for each station and date, a conversation with the permit administrator resulted in one permit for all six stations, seven days a week, 3 to 7 P.M., from Sept. 26 through election day. Although she is treasurer of CCCLP, Sandra Kallander acted in her capacity as an individual to obtain the permit, and started scheduling events, based on availability of volunteers.

The first station was Concord on Monday, Sept. 26, followed by North Concord on Tuesday (both in triple-digit temperatures). These were not publicized, so that any wrinkles could be ironed out, and so materials and permit copies could be provided to the volunteers who were willing to become "captains" (bring materials to subsequent events and communicate the permit rules).

Young woman waving a Gary Johnson for President sign at BART station (color photo)

Johnson supporter Pearl Nicolas promoting the campaign at the Pleasant Hill BART station (Sept. 28)

With five volunteer captains now enrolled, including a recently discovered Libertarian candidate for the East Bay Regional Parks District board, John Roberts, the next two events were announced on Meetup.com and JohnsonWeld.com, at the last minute. (The Contra Costa Libertarian Meetup group has 147 members, of which, fewer than 10 usually attend the monthly meetings.)

Despite short notice, the Pleasant Hill BART event on Sept. 28 produced two more volunteers, and the Sept. 29th event at Walnut Creek BART had two more RSVPs from additional volunteers. This level of growth already enables the coalition to cover multiple stations simultaneously.

Johnson supporter Pearl Nicolas, the Walnut Creek captain, has already posted two upcoming dates, and Moore, along with fellow member Randy Marsh, will announce more dates for Concord and North Concord, shortly. Plans call for candidate Roberts to schedule a couple of events in Lafayette and/or Orinda because they're in his Ward 2. Each of the six stations should be covered twice or more by mid-October.

Kurt Schultz and Steve Dufour promoting Johnson for President at WC BART station (color photo)

Kurt Schultz speaking to a BART rider, and Steve Dufour waving a Johnson for President sign (Sept. 28)

After three events in one week, they're being rewarded with thumbs-up from a handful of transit riders per train, as well as some interest and the inevitable smirk, now and then. The majority of riders are not paying attention, yet. The demographics vary between the six stations, with Walnut Creek, Lafayette, and Orinda anticipated to connect with a more influential audience.

CCCLP will be out again starting at 4:30 P.M. on Thursday, Oct. 6 at Lafayette BART, and on Tuesday, Oct. 11 at Concord BART, to wave signs and hand out flyers. Check the Meetup page at MeetUp.com/lp-ccc  for details.

Don't live in the east bay? Find events in your own area by plugging in your ZIP code at JohnsonWeld.com/supporter_events.

Next regular meeting of the LP of Contra Costa County

WHEN: Thursday, October 6, 2016, 7:00 – 9:00 P.M.

WHERE: Mimi's Café: 1613 Willow Pass Road, Concord 94520

Meetings are normally held on the first Thursday of each month.


This weekend! Wine and Liberty in Alameda County

Westover Winery sign on tree (photo)

It's here: the east bay LP "Wine and Liberty" gathering at Westover Vineyards in Castro Valley.

The Contra Costa County LP again joins the Alameda County LP to cohost the tenth annual afternoon of leisurely wine tasting, conversation, recreation, and hors d'oeuvres on the patio and in the tasting room of this charming family-owned winery.

Jim Eyer, chair of the Alameda LP, says that all are welcome — Libertarian or not. "Wine and Liberty has always been a relaxing and fun way to meet and interact with Libertarians, and to find out about ways to get involved with your local LP organization. This Sunday, we will share ideas, visit old friends and make new ones, and keep things lighthearted."

All Wine and Liberty proceeds will benefit local Libertarian and election outreach programs.

WHEN: Sunday, October 9, 2016, from one to four o'clock in the afternoon

WHERE: Westover Vineyards, 34329 Palomares Road, Castro Valley 94552 *


  • Wine and port tasting (over 21 only)
  • Meet the winemaker
  • Fundraiser raffle!
  • Light hors d'oeuvres and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Ping pong and pool tables available for play

     $30 per person — Includes wine tasting ($20 per student over 21)
     $20 per person — No wine tasting
     $15 per person — Student or under 18

Come join the fun. "Be free! Drink wine!"

* See all the details, including an important note about directions, at LPAC.us/events, or download the flyer at Events.LPAC.us/LPAC_WineAndLiberty_2016.pdf.

Contact Jim Eyer at Chair@LPAC.us or (510) 482-3521, or purchase your tickets on line, at SquareUp.com/store/bitcoin-express.

Next regular meeting of the LP of Alameda County

WHEN: Thursday, October 13, 2016, 7:15 – 9:30 P.M.

WHERE: NEW LOCATION!  Tai San Chinese Restaurant: 2811 Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley 94705

For more details: Visit LPAC.us/events, or contact chair Jim Eyer via e-mail at Chair@LPAC.us or by phone at (510) 482-3521.

Meetings are held on the second Thursday of each month.


Ventura County LP logo (graphic image)

In it to win it, in Ventura County

by Susan Aquino

"The way we see it, Gary Johnson is out there every day, working his heart out for us, never wavering in his optimism that it could happen. The least we can do is do the best we can at our local level."

With that motivation, the Libertarian Party of Ventura County ordered a large number of Johnson–Weld 2016 campaign materials to distribute locally. We held two volunteer planning meetings for Gary Johnson, and have created a dedicated Facebook page and a dedicated Meetup site for his campaign in Ventura County.

The youth in our county held two corner sign-waves/rallies in Thousand Oaks, and one in Ventura. Other volunteers recently ran tables at a gun show and at two farmers' markets, one in Ojai and one in Ventura. So far, four volunteers have placed door-hangers throughout their neighborhoods. A volunteer's letter to the editor was published in our weekly paper, and an article about our local campaign, written by the daily paper's news staff, was published on line in late September.

In mid-September, we tabled at Moorpark College's Constitution Day event, and we are organizing booths at two street fairs: Moorpark Country Days on Oct 8, and Thousand Oaks Street Fair, sponsored by the Rotary Club, on Oct 16.

To reach an even wider audience of voters, we purchased the Ventura County LP voter registration data on disk. We will use that for a phone bank, for which we plan to also take advantage of Nation Builder through the Johnson–Weld campaign web site.

We procured two large Gary Johnson banners for a member to place on his highway frontage-road property, which sees thousands of cars per day. As Gary says, "we are in it to win it." Meantime, we also invested in a longer "freeway" banner, and we're hatching plans for where to place the latest batch of Johnson yard signs we put on order.

Ventura County Libertarians encourage all to get involved. Contact chair Paul Githens at LPVentura.Co@GMail.com, or check our web site for updates: www.LPVC.org.

Susan Aquino is the treasurer of the LP of Ventura County.


Placer County LP focuses on students

Students are an important demographic and a natural constituency for the Libertarian Party, with its principle of smaller government, given the tremendous fiscal burden that young people are facing — considering the national debt, the monetary inflation of the Federal Reserve system, and so many cities' considerable public-employee pension obligations. For years, the Placer County LP has been honing their student-outreach programs at both the college and high school level.

On Sept. 19, Libertarian activists in Placer County participated, as they do every year, in the Constitution Day event held at Sierra College's Rocklin campus. With representatives also from FairTax (Americans for Fair Taxation), Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution, and State of Jefferson, Placer LP chair Steven Wood said the event was "a spectacular educational event for the students." He expressed "a big thank you" to LP Placer County member Robert Page, Sierra College economics instructor Michael Mace, Dianne Foster of Calif. Federation of Republican Women, along with the financial sponsors and the many others who worked hard to make the event a success. Wood also reported that the LP partnered with the industrious Young Americans for Liberty chapter on campus, who "signed up several dozen students for liberty before noon!"

With many high school seniors being on the brink of voting in their first election, the Placer team has also been deploying to high schools for "voter outreach" days, which will run through October.

Community outreach chair Sam Toll is among the LP Placer reps who's been presenting to students this fall, covering Del Oro High School on Sept. 29, and Rocklin on Sept. 15 and 16. At the latter, Toll reported, of the 390 students who registered to vote, 50.8 percent eschewed the dominant parties, with 15.6 percent registering Libertarian, and 33.8 percent without indicating any party preference. Of the less than half who did register with one of the older two parties, 64.6 percent chose the Republican Party, and 35.4 chose to register Democratic.

Wood gives Toll a "special mention, along with Dennis Schlumpf, Richard Simms, and Stephen Parker, for their continued support, traveling many miles just to speak the five minutes allotted at each high school."

Still on the student-outreach docket are Whitney High School on Oct. 5, Chana on Oct. 12, North Tahoe on Oct. 19 and 20, Oakmont on Oct. 21, Adelante on Oct. 27, and Colfax on Oct. 28. Wood invites other Libertarians in Placer County to help represent the LP; to participate, send him e-mail at PlacerCoLP@GMail.com.

Next two meetings of the LP of Placer County

WHEN: Wed., October 12, and Wed., October 26, 7:00 – 9:00 P.M.

WHERE: Whole Foods Market's outdoor seating area, 1001 Galleria Blvd., Roseville 95678

Meetings are held on one or more Wednesday evenings each month. To receive meeting notices, send e-mail to LP Placer County chair Steven Wood at PlacerCoLP@GMail.com.

Get connected with the LP in your area

Alameda Jim Eyer Chair@LPAC.us LPAC.us
Contra Costa Cory Nott CoryNott@Yahoo.com MeetUp.com/lp-ccc
El Dorado Tyler Kuskie TKuskie@EDCLP.org EDCLP.org
Fresno Paula Barefoot PEBarefoot@GMail.com
Humboldt Tammy Newcomb PrivacyLawAdvocate
Kern Jonathan Hall Aedardran@GMail.com
Kings Kenneth Brent Olsen *
Los Angeles José Castañeda LPCLAVC@AOL.com LPLAC.org
Mendocino Ken Anton ELKAnton@Yahoo.com
Monterey James King TheJamesKing@
Nevada Donn Coenen DRCoenenNCLP@
Orange Brian Kelly * LPOC.org
Placer Steven Wood PlacerCoLP@GMail.com
Plumas Gary Bryant GBryantNCLP@
Riverside Jeff Hewitt JHewitt@Ca.LP.org RCLP.org
Sacramento Jarrett Tilford Office@LPSac.org www.LPSac.org
San Bernardino Boomer Shannon Boomer@Ca.LP.org SBCLP.org
San Diego Jerry Dixon Chair@SDLP.org www.FaceBook
San Francisco Aubrey Freedman Chair@LPSF.org www.LPSF.org
San Joaquin Alex Appleby IAmAlexAppleby
San Luis Obispo Gail Lightfoot GLightfoot@Ca.LP.org
San Mateo Harland Harrison Harrison@LPSM.org www.LPSM.org
Santa Clara Joe Dehn Chair@SCCLP.org SCCLP.org
Solano Brian Thiemer LPSolanoCounty@GMail.com Facebook.com/
Ventura Paul Githens LPVentura.Co@GMail.com www.LPVC.org
Yolo Stephen Blakeman SDouglasBlakeman

* If your county, or county's representative, is not listed above, contact your regional vice chair:
    Jonathan Jaech, Southern Vice Chair: Jonathan@Jaech.net
    Brian Thiemer, Northern Vice Chair: BThiemer@Ca.LP.org

Candidate Donn Coenen to speak at Plumas County LP meeting

The Plumas County Libertarian Party welcomes Donn Coenen, Libertarian candidate for State Assembly District 1, as guest speaker at its October meeting.

WHEN: Wednesday, October 12, 6:00 P.M.

WHERE: Neighbors Bar-B-Que, 58421 Highway 70, Cromberg, Ca. 96103

DETAILS: Open to the public. For info and reservations, call (530) 575-7932.


David vs. Goliath over S.F. ballot arguments

by Aubrey Freedman

LPSF LOGO color  (photo)

The LP of San Francisco (LPSF) is busy with the aftermath of ballot measure argument submissions, and has been getting calls to represent the Libertarian viewpoint to groups throughout the city.

On yet another school-bond measure, we won the lottery for the one free, prominently printed argument, and we signed on with taxpayer groups to the argument against a Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) bond, which will be printed in the voter handbooks of three Bay Area counties.

LPSF also submitted supplementary, paid arguments. One opposes a penalty for purchasing "sugary beverages." To fight a "mansion tax," designed to increase class warfare, we were aided by a generous contribution from the owner of a local property management company. These two LPSF arguments will appear in the voter handbook, following the official opponents' arguments.

A third paid argument is up in the air. There's a parcel-tax increase and extension on the ballot, to fund a dysfunctional community college. LPSF is embroiled in a David-versus-Goliath battle with the Department of Elections, to get its opposition to the parcel tax printed in the voter handbook. A progressive county supervisor, using a special privilege granted politicians over ordinary citizens, pre-empted the official opponents' argument, so LPSF didn't submit an argument against the tax.

But in the end, the supervisor submitted no argument, so the voter handbook will have no official opposing argument. LPSF quickly submitted a paid argument against the tax, only to receive a call three days later with the news that the ballot measure was now a "district" measure, for which no paid arguments are possible.

Needless to say, we won't throw in the towel and allow a so-called temporary tax to be approved by the voters without a fair hearing of the other side. E-mail has been flying fast and furious, and so far, the statists have the upper hand, but LPSF activists insist, "Not without a fight!"

If there are any lawyers out there who could help LPSF in this battle, please e-mail me at Chair@LPSF.org. Stay tuned!

Aubrey Freedman is the chair of the LP of San Francisco.


Writing ballot arguments for fun and profit

by Mark W.A. Hinkle

Publicity can be costly. But ballot arguments can provide the Libertarian Party virtually free publicity, reaching the voters of every district with a proposed parcel tax, bond measure, sales tax, transient occupancy tax (hotel tax), or other special tax. Here are a few guidelines to help you tap into this avenue.

  1. Your local elections office, registrar of voters, county or city clerk has all the details you will need to participate. There is no cost, and usually, there's no competition either (i.e., arguments submitted by other groups).
  2. The tax-and-spenders who are putting these measures on our ballots have unlimited time to craft the language of their new, exorbitant taxes and bonds, but our deadlines for countering them are early and the submission windows are short. Prepare in advance; monitor activity at your elections office — and do not delay.
  3. You can use generic anti-tax arguments, or be more specific to the district, agency, type of tax, or terms of the bond. Specific arguments are usually more effective in defeating a tax, but any argument is infinitely better than no argument.
  4. A rich resource for data to support arguments against both parcel taxes and bond measures for schools in California is Education Data Partnership (a.k.a. "Ed-Data," at Ed-Data.org).
  5. Ballot arguments are subject to word limits. In Santa Clara County, for example, your "argument against" is limited to 300 words, and the "rebuttal to the argument in favor" can be only 250 words. Hint: Set up a web page with anything else you need to convey — perhaps on your LP chapter's web site — and include that "for more information" at the end of both your ballot argument and rebuttal.
  6. Read the rules carefully for all the nuances. When you have a lot to say, this is crucial. For example, "the city" would be two words, but "San Jose" might count as only one.
  7. Ballot arguments can provide the Libertarian Party virtually free publicity.

  8. Who should sign the argument? There's strength in numbers, so build a coalition — either with other groups, such as your local taxpayer association, or individuals — or both — ideally those within the district, whether a resident, homeowner, parent, or business owner. While Libertarians know very well that keeping taxes down everywhere will help everyone, where possible, it's good to avoid the chance to be called "carpetbaggers." Again, know the rules for your jurisdiction. In Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties, up to five individuals or organizational reps may sign the argument against, and the same, or a different set of people, may sign the rebuttal to the argument in favor.
  9. Be prepared for the media to call, because they will call. They love sound-bites, so memorize your most relevant Libertarian points — and keep them short, easy to remember, and to the point. While you should explain the damage caused by tax increases and decades-long interest burdens, don't just be anti-tax. Voters want to hear our Libertarian solutions to the problems of education and infrastructure. If you will be acting as a spokesperson, read Game-Changing Libertarian Communications, by Political Director Carla Howell of the Libertarian National Committee. This guide offers solid tips and techniques for us activists (available for download at LP.org/guide). Then watch for that media coverage to turn up in the press or on line. Keep a digital scrapbook of the coverage and share it with your team.
  10. Finally, what's more gratifying than seeing Libertarian ideas in the media? Seeing them in the election results, of course. As soon as the results are in on Election Day, you'll want to evaluate which exorbitant taxes and bonds were successfully defeated. Keep track of the dollars you have saved voters, and use those data in future publicity efforts. Important: Use that indirect feedback to adjust your arguments, next election. Continue to adjust and improve; the process will get easier and easier. Eventually, you will have built an arsenal of effective arguments to apply again and again — until one day when all the Libertarian elected officials have made such irresponsible and costly ballot measures a thing of the past.

LP team at PolitiCon

Mark W.A. Hinkle

Mark W.A. Hinkle is an at-large member of the LP of California executive committee, a former LNC chair, and president of Silicon Valley Taxpayers Association. He welcomes your questions about writing ballot arguments; contact him via e-mail at MHinkle@Ca.LP.org, or by phone at (408) 779-7922.


Reaching out to voters in Monterey County

There are some 24 ballot measures in Monterey County and its cities, mostly tax increases. LP of Monterey County (LPMC) vice chair Lawrence Samuels, author of In Defense of Chaos and a past northern vice chair for LP California, has championed LPMC's mission that every bad ballot measure be called out as such, in every voter handbook.

In particular, LPMC appears as the primary opponent of the county's "Commercial Cannabis Tax" (Measure Y), which would impose not one, but two taxes on certain commercial marijuana businesses, including a 10-percent tax on gross revenue. According to the measure's official ballot language, the taxes would "potentially [generate] millions of dollars annually to help fund County services."

The LPMC team's ballot arguments were crafted to appeal to conservative and liberal voters, alike, making the case that because the county government has "nearly $1 billion in assets," the anticipated "new revenue stream will likely pay for higher government salaries, bloated pensions, and outrageously generous pensions that few receive in the private sector."

They point out that not only are these revenues unneeded, but there would be unintended, negative consequences:

"Sales and property taxes already provide ample funding for the policing of marijuana cultivation, processing, and dispensing in Monterey County.... This tax will increase the likelihood of illegal cannabis farming, causing many growers to cultivate their crop in public parklands, [threatening] wildlife, the environment and human life."

They didn't overlook altruists' concerns, either: "The [governmentalists] want to over-regulate and over-control the operations of a farming enterprise that has become important in helping people with cancers and other illnesses."

Samuels was joined in signing the arguments by LPMC's chair, James King, and secretary, Jane Heider, as well as new member Brandon Kelsey of the city of Marina.

Reaching farmers and shoppers

Jane Heider seated at LP table outdoors promoting Johson for President (photo)

Photo: Lawrence Samuels

Jane Heider, secretary for LP Monterey County, promoting Johnson for President and the LP at the Monterey Farmer's Market (Aug. 23)

Meantime, LPMC also reaches voters and others on a more personal level, when tabling every Tuesday at the Farmer's Market. Monterey Libertarians are invited to come enjoy the fresh air while helping promote fresh Libertarian solutions to shoppers and farmers alike.

WHEN: Every Tuesday, year round

Opens at 4 o'clock, but LPMC arrives early to get the best spot! Now closing at 7 P.M. for the "winter."

WHERE: Old Monterey Marketplace, Alvarado Street between Del Monte and Pearl, Monterey

FOR MORE DETAILS: Contact James King, LPMC chair, by phone at (831) 659-2121 or via e-mail at TheJamesKing@Yahoo.com


LP of California Program addresses health care

Second in a series

LP Calif. logo minimalist blue silhouette of Lady Liberty 
					in a circle holding torch with the phrase

This year, LP California published a new party program, which differs from our platform in that it addresses a few specific issues that the party will focus on for the current year:

  1. Economic Growth Creates Abundance
  2. Quality, Accessible, Affordable Health Care
  3. Education
  4. Making our Communities Safe (featured in the last issue)

On Sept. 21, Grace-Marie Turner, president of the Galen Institute, wrote in Forbes Magazine that "as many as 20 million Americans soon will be getting a letter from the Internal Revenue Service 'suggesting' they sign up for ObamaCare insurance."

According to Turner, "at President Obama's direction, the IRS is 'reaching out' to people who paid the tax penalty for not buying mandatory health insurance or who claimed an exemption...." Apparently, 45 percent of Americans who opted out in 2014 are under 35 and healthy — and the insurance pools have told the IRS their participation is desperately needed if the socialistic system is to be kept afloat. Although tax filers' data are meant to be secure, and Affordable Care Act (ACA) use of them should be limited to determining whether people are eligible for ACA subsidies, the IRS allegedly will be using them for pressuring citizens to register for ObamaCare.

Libertarians believe that people's choice of health care should not involve the taxing authority nor violate their privacy. Three U.S. House leaders seem to agree: according to Turner, they wrote to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, saying that, "The ACA has caused great disruption in the individual health insurance market.... We do not believe it to be an appropriate tax administration activity, or a good use of scarce taxpayer resources, to use protected return data to direct taxpayers on their personal coverage decisions."

In this installment, we present the health-care segment of the LP California Program, followed by a related "Libertarian Solution."

Quality, Accessible, Affordable Health Care

To ensure that all citizens can access adequate, affordable health care, we must increase the supply of health care, remove barriers to a free market and encourage competition. The Libertarian Party of California believes that enabling people to become more self-sufficient and secure will allow quality, accessible, affordable health care to be more available to our families, children and seniors.

When people purchase their own independent health plan covering the services they need and allowing for fewer out of pocket visits to their doctor, they are more secure and less dependent on others. When individuals have more control over their own health care and are less dependent upon a third party, they become empowered to be assertive consumers of health care. There is likely to be greater interest in price information and demand for price transparency from consumers as their cost-sharing responsibilities increase. This results in more competition that keeps health care affordable and of high quality.

Therefore, the Libertarian Party of California supports the following measures to make quality, affordable health care accessible to all citizens:

  • Health insurance premiums, co-payments, deductibles and all medical expenses shall be deducted directly from income without having to meet any standard deduction.
  • A Medical Savings Account shall be established to be used for medical purposes in which up to 10% of income shall be deductible but without limitation on contributions.
  • Barriers to price transparency shall be removed to empower consumers and to encourage efficiency of care and competitive pricing.

The Libertarian Party also supports the following measures to increase the supply of quality affordable health care by increasing the numbers of medical professionals, facilities and medical non-profit and for-profit organizations:

  • Eliminate or greatly simplify all state medical regulations and licensing standards which impede the supply of health care. Replace the state monopoly on regulation and licensing with an open market for testing and review of products and services to ensure more accurate, timely and cost-effective ratings and controls on quality.
  • Provide tax credits, exclusions and above-the-line deductions (without "percentage of income" limits) for medical education, educational savings accounts, charitable contributions to medical schools, facilities, service providers, medical research and construction of medical facilities.
    Streamline permit processes and zoning variances for construction of medical facilities and schools.
  • Reclaim our Tenth Amendment right to control pharmaceuticals distributed within the state. Reduce the function of the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to be a merely advisory body rather than a licensing authority. Allow drugs which have been proven to be safe to be marketed even if not yet proven effective. Allow patients access to unapproved drugs upon informed consent.

To read the full program, visit: Ca.LP.org/about/program-3
The current LP California platform is available by visiting:


Expand marketplace of health care practitioners

by Michael H. Wilson

Libertarian National Party logo - torch eagle (graphic image)

Historically, occupational licensing laws and other regulations have deprived midwives, denturists, chiropractors, and others of an opportunity to practice. This deprives patients of a choice and denies workers their right to practice in their professions.

Occupational licensing laws are some of the last Jim Crow–era laws, serving to protect professions from competition, rather than protecting the interests of patients.

Republicans running for office...will attack their Democratic opponents' support of Obamacare, but will offer no concrete solutions to expand health freedom. One of the ways that Libertarian candidates can distinguish themselves from their Republican rivals is by proposing to reduce government authority over who may or may not practice medicine.

Repeal occupational licensing laws that restrict advance nurse practitioners: Seventeen states and Washington, D.C., allow advance nurse practitioners to set up their own practices independent of doctors. In the other states, they are required to be supervised by a doctor or work in collaboration with one. Repealing the laws in the states that restrict advance nurse practitioners will give the patients more choices and save tax dollars.

Occupational licensing laws are some of the last Jim Crow–era laws, serving to protect professions from competition, rather than protecting the interests of patients.

Repeal occupational licensing laws that restrict direct entry midwives: Nurse midwives are recognized in all states, but direct-entry midwives, who did not study nursing, are prohibited from practicing in many states. Direct-entry midwives may have learned this craft through an apprenticeship or by attending a college that trains midwives. Twelve states prohibit direct-entry midwives, and in the others, the right to practice varies. Studies have shown midwives to be as good as doctors — if not better — and less expensive. Midwives would be especially beneficial to Native American and African-American infants, whose mortality rates are significantly higher than those of white infants.

Almost 50 percent of births nationwide are paid for by Medicaid, so expanding the opportunities for midwives would save significant tax dollars and result in healthier children. Economist John C. Goodman explains, in his book Priceless: Curing the Healthcare Crisis, that although the nurses and midwives at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Texas, deliver high-quality care at a lower cost, "the infant mortality rate is only half the national average."

Abolish or privatize the state medical boards: The state medical boards are controlled by the professions. They do little or nothing to protect patients and are a classic example of what is known as "regulatory capture."

Repeal the Certificate of Need laws: [The majority of] states have some form of Certificate of Need laws. In many states, Certificate of Need regulations are being used to slow or halt the development of lower-cost alternatives, such as retail health clinics. Retail health clinics offer a low cost alternative to people needing immediate care, instead of going to an emergency room. One study suggests that retail clinics save about 80 percent of the costs of an emergency-room visit. In jurisdictions where they are allowed, retail health clinics have grown significantly since 2006.

Abolish the FDA: There is no reason that the functions performed by the FDA cannot be carried out by a private organization, such as Consumers Union. Prescription medicine was supposedly originated to protect patients, but in reality it does more to keep costs high and protect the profits of the pharmaceutical industry. We should abolish the need for a prescription. If nothing else, we should let pharmacists prescribe medicine as they did in the past.

If the government didn't manage the health-care industry for quality, who would? One good example is the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). Founded in 1990, this nonprofit has a large influence in the health-care industry. Organizations using the NCQA seal must pass a demanding review and report yearly.

These common-sense solutions would provide people with more choices, cut costs, improve health-care quality, and save tax dollars. They would also create jobs for many qualified practitioners, and greatly increase access to needed health-care services.

Reprinted with permission from LP News, Volume 43 Issue 4 (December 2013).

Correction:  The theme of the 2016 Libertarian National Convention was #LegalizeFreedom, not #LegalizeLiberty as was indicated in the Aug. 12 issue ("Icebreaking for introverts: How to talk with voters and other prospective Libertarians").     —Editor

Join us.

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Visit: Ca.LP.org/membership and follow the instructions to join (or renew),
or print out the form, below, and mail it to us at
770 L Street, Suite 950, Sacramento, CA 95814-3361.

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Visit: Ca.LP.org/volunteer

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Membership form

The California Libertarian Activist serves Libertarians in California and beyond, and is published by the Libertarian Party of California
(an affiliate of the Libertarian National Committee).

Ted Brown

Executive Director:
Janine Kloss

Elizabeth C. Brierly

Contributors:  Susan Aquino, Ted Brown, Joe Dehn, Aubrey Freedman, Mark W.A. Hinkle, Robert Imhoff, Jonathan Jaech, Sandra Kallander, Michael H. Wilson

Send affiliate and campaign updates and announcements via e-mail to Editor@Ca.LP.org.

Executive Committee:

Officers:  Ted Brown (Chair), Brian Thiemer (N. Vice Chair), Jonathan Jaech (S. Vice Chair), Kevin Duewel (Secretary), Gale Morgan (Treasurer)

At-large reps:  Alex Appleby, Dave Bowers, Bill Hajdu, Jeff Hewitt, Wendy Hewitt, Mark Hinkle, Boomer Shannon, Eric Vaughnes, Susan Marie Weber, Jason Wu

Alternate at-large reps:  Starchild, Gail Lightfoot

The Libertarian Party of California  |  Less Government, More Freedom

(916) 446-1776  |  Ca.LP.org  |  Office@Ca.LP.org

770 L Street, Suite 950, Sacramento, CA 95814-3361

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