Steve G.

Posts Tagged ‘Boston Tea Party’

Jason Gatties resigns as Boston Tea Party Chairman

In Boston Tea Party, Health, Libertarian, Personal Responsibility, Politics, Press Release on November 21, 2008 at 5:24 pm

Dear Freedom Fighters,

I would like to thank those who have expressed concerned over the illness in my family. Trust me, it does help. I also want to thank everyone who in this brief period of serving as chairman, supported my efforts. However, sometimes in life, there are more important battles and I’m at that stage right now. When I decided to run for the Chair seat, I could not foresee the issues that have popped up in my life personally over the past two weeks.

The Boston Tea Party deserves a Chairman who can dedicate 100% towards the cause. I’m simply unable to do that at this time. Family comes first and politics will always take a back seat to that. It is for this reason that I must officially resign as Chairman of the Boston Tea Party. I need to tend to family & more importantly, my pregnant wife. There is nothing more important to me than her health and I want to make sure that I can be there to hold her hand during this stressful period. She is very close to her family, but they live an ocean away, so hearing about someone she was close to dying of cancer is just a bit much right now. I’m all she has and I must be there for her.

I’m sure there will be those who will rip me for this decision and that is within your right to do so. However, I will never put politics ahead of family.

It was an honor to be elected your Chairman and I’m confident Douglass Gaking will be a fantastic Chairman, as he takes over my duties on a full time basis. The timing is just bad. I wish I could stick around and help this party grow, and perhaps I can in the future in some capacity, but right now just isn’t that time.

Thank you all so very much. Take care and keep fighting the good fight.

Jason Gatties

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BTP Chair Jason Gatties steps back from duties due to personal issues

In Boston Tea Party, Libertarian, Personal Responsibility on November 17, 2008 at 10:18 pm

I wanted to make everyone aware that I’m going to step away from my
duties as Chairman of the Boston Tea Party National Committee to take
care of some personal issues. There’s an illness on my wife’s side of
the family and we have very few details at the moment.

My wife, who is pregnant, is pretty stressed out and rightfully so.
She deserves my love and attention right now, as any good husband
would provide.

Vice Chairman Douglass Gaking will take over my duties for the time
being. Right now, there is no set time line for my return, but I hope
to resume my duties in the very near future.

Please keep my family in your thoughts.

In Liberty,

Jason Gatties
Chairman
Boston Tea Party National Committee

 

Positive thoughts and best wishes go out to Jason and Cilla Gatties (and their family) from everyone at LFV.  Please do not hesitate to let us know if there is anything we can do to help.  In the meantime, we’ll keep your place on LFV warm for you, until you are in a position to return.

Tom Knapp to seek 2012 LP/BTP Presidential bid

In Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Media, Politics on November 11, 2008 at 11:30 pm

You heard it here first, folks, when LFV posted about the Knapp2012 domain. 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
11/11/08
POC Thomas L. Knapp
admin@knapp2012. com
314-750-6993

WHEN THE GOING GETS WEIRD, THE WEIRD RUN FOR PRESIDENT
Knapp announces 2012 candidacy

While most Americans are still catching up on their rest from a
hard-fought presidential election, one group of individuals is already
on the march: Those who aspire to election in 2012.

Among them is Thomas L. Knapp, who announced his candidacy for the
presidential nominations of the Boston Tea Party and the Libertarian
Party Tuesday evening.

“I initially planned to announce my 2012 candidacy for the presidency
of the United States on April 6th, 2009,” said Knapp in a
Internet-distribute d announcement. “I see, however, that others are
already lining up with formal announcements or at least clear
indications of their own intent … and when a fight’s brewing, I
prefer to get in early.”

Citing ideological drift in the Libertarian Party, Knapp, 42, founded
the Boston Tea Party in 2006 and served as its vice-presidential
nominee this year — while also running for Congress in his home state
of Missouri as a Libertarian Party candidate. He hopes to bring the
two parties closer together with his presidential campaign. “The LP
has a lot of installed plant — ballot access, seasoned activists, the
things that any party requires to be successful,” he says. “What we
lost track of were our principles — but the BTP has been keeping
those alive and will hopefully be happy to share them back.”

Knapp’s campaign organization is embryonic but already in existence.
He’s appointed Darcy G. Richardson, a noted political historian and
veteran of numerous third party campaigns, as his campaign’s chief of
staff. Also on board is Nick Galindo, an experienced campaign
treasurer.

His chances? He’s realistic: “We’ve got a tough row to hoe before we
reach political success,” he says. “Much of my campaign will be about
correcting mistakes the freedom movement has made in the past and
positioning us to move forward further and faster.”

-30-

Campaign Site:
http://www.knapp201 2.com

Boston Tea Party:
http://www.bostonte a.us

Libertarian Party:
http://www.lp. org

Dr. Tom Stevens health concerns

In Boston Tea Party, Health, Politics, Presidential Candidates on October 27, 2008 at 8:34 pm

Tom Stevens, former BTP Vice Chair and current Objectivist presidential candidate, has apparently suffered some extremely serious health problems requiring emergent medical care, but is refusing further treatment.

Since word is getting around, I do wish to confirm that on Thursday night, I was rushed to the hospital on an emergency basis. I may have suffered a small stroke and had a massive infection exacerbated by uncontrolled blood sugar levels. Since I had to teach two classes this morning and in light of the fact that I am an idiot, I signed myself out of the hospital against medical advice. You should have seen the statement I had to sign where the doctors warned me of “coma, inpending death, further stroke, etc.”
 
I have been in extreme pain and even oxycodone has not relieved it. The left side of my body is numb.
 
I appreciate the good wishes I have received and I apologize if I am not in a position to take phone calls at the current time. It is quite difficult for me to speak.
 
I always thought it odd that when crisis occurs in some people’s lives, they withdraw from their commitments and involvements. I will not take that course. I will do what I can to get better and will continue to be involved in the fight for liberty until I can no longer do so.
 
Things are serious, to say the least, and my spirits are not what they should be.
 
Thanks to all who have expressed concern.
 
Respectfully,
 
Dr. Tom Stevens
Best wishes for improved health (and improved spirits) go out to him from all of us at LFV.  

Some thoughts on the Boston Tea Party

In Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Politics on October 27, 2008 at 2:47 pm

As the founder and 2008 national vice-presidential nominee of the Boston Tea Party, that party is naturally on my mind a lot, especially as it wraps up its second biennial national convention and nears its first presidential election. And, also naturally, I find myself saying various things about it to various people (including, as of a few minutes ago, a reporter for the Associated Press).

Some of the points I’m trying to make keep coming up, so they seem worth writing down in one place … like maybe here.

When I founded the BTP, I held out hope that it would, sooner or later, merge back into the Libertarian Party as an internal caucus. That’s obviously not going to happen. With the nomination of its own presidential slate and the placement of that slate on several state ballots, our split from the LP at the national organizational level is complete. The split also proceeds apace at the state level as we recognize new affiliates which are likely to seek their own ballot access in 2010 and beyond.

Where that split is concerned, I once viewed it with trepidation, but that view has now changed to one of hope. The LP had a 36-year virtual monopoly and head start on cornering the libertarian political niche in America — yet the BTP appears to be doing better coming into that competitive niche for the first time than the LP did when the niche was effectively uncontested.

We have more members than the LP did as of its first presidential election. We’re on the ballot in more states than the LP was as of its first presidential election. I expect that our presidential slate will outpoll the LP’s first presidential slate.

The LP appears to be unable to expand the American libertarian political niche against its major party opposition, or to defend its monopoly on that niche versus newcomers.

Enter Darwin. Personally, I expect that the next major stage of the Boston Tea Party’s growth will include several state Libertarian Parties disaffiliating from the Libertarian National Committee and re-affiliating under the BTP umbrella.

The obvious cause to point to for the current situation — up-and-coming BTP, LP teetering on the edge of the dustbin of history — is the descent of the LP as a national organization into cargo-cultism. The nomination of the 2008 Libertarian Party Barr-Root ticket represented a final triumph of image over substance, and now we’re watching that image crumble to dust under the wind of apathy. Image can’t survive or thrive on its own. Without substance, it is dead.

Beyond the obvious, however, the BTP has its own reasons for optimism. We are a “principled populist” party, not just in rhetoric but in action. Just as we oppose the rule of “power elites” (in libertarian class theory, the political class) in the world at large, we deny those elites the ability to run our own party.

We are an activist-powered party — our national committee is constrained by our bylaws from becoming a money sink, and therefore from becoming a central planning board. If something gets done, it’s because our members want it to be done and go out and do it. Ernie Hancock, your new party is calling — your approach failed in the LP because the Politburo/Commissar structure had already taken firm root before you tried so valiantly to shatter it.

We are a genuine mass-participation party. If you want to be involved, you don’t have to travel hundreds of miles, shell out hundreds or thousands of dollars, and miss a week of work every time there’s a convention. You don’t have to send a representative and hope that representative actually represents you. If you’re a member of our party, you can take part in its business activities via any Internet connection.

Finally, we’re a consistently “smaller-government” party. Our platform isn’t going to be cut by 3/4th at one convention and completely re-built at the next like the LP’s has. It’s perpetual and unmodifiable:

“The Boston Tea Party supports reducing the size, scope and power of government at all levels and on all issues, and opposes increasing the size, scope and power of government at any level, for any purpose.”

Until and unless the state is completely eliminated, we will always be the party agitating to make it smaller tomorrow than it is today. That’s the standard the national LP is going to have to meet if it wants to recapture its place of primacy in the freedom movement … and I no longer believe that it can, or will, or even wants to, meet that standard.

I realize that many fellow libertarians whom I know and respect will continue to cling to the LP for some time … and that’s okay. I continue to work in my state LP and plan to do so for at least awhile longer. Breaking up is hard to do. I urge those libertarians remaining in the LP to think of the BTP as an ally, not an enemy. Our existence is an incentive to the LP to become better at what it does, and to think harder about what it wants to do. If it responds negatively to that incentive (as I believe it will continue to do), at least it no longer holds the claim over your head that “you have no place else to go.” Because now you do.

[Cross-posted at the Boston Tea Party web site and KN@PPSTER]

My Keynote Address Speech to the BTP Convention Attendees

In Libertarian, Politics on October 25, 2008 at 12:21 am

This is my keynote address speech (in text form) to the attendees at the Boston Tea National Convention online tonight. This speech, which was updated periodically just to correct any grammatical and spelling errors and missing words, was posted eight minutes prior to the start of the convention.

I hope everyone enjoys what I wrote. Here it is:

I have a few thoughts on tonight’s convention as well as my endorsements that I’d like to share with everyone, and I think this is the best time to do it.

I hope everyone has fun at this convention, because it’s going to be an exciting event online. But, more importantly, it’s going to shape the future of the Party as we all know it, and we must do what is best for the BTP with caution.

Why caution? Because I think, after the recent events that unfolded in the Party, we are now more vulnerable than ever. But, in the days after the unfortunate sequence of events that transpired on this site and on the BTP Yahoo groups, I feel that the Party is going to turn around, and I feel the unity by the membership is stronger than it has ever been.

As the old saying goes, “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger!” I know it’s cliched to say this, but it speaks truth to power. And stronger we shall be in the days, weeks, and months to come!!

As the former Boston Tea Party vice chairman and the former Bylaws Committee chairman, I think our goals are well developed and the bylaws proposals we have presented are great. Even if any one of them doesn’t pass (and I hope they all do), still it shows that we have strong membership at our finger tips.

Imagine where the BTP was months ago soon after the calamitous Denver convention: membership was over 30, we didn’t have any state affiliates, our presidential ticket wasn’t on ballot in one state, and we have several states where he’s now on the ballot. In states where he’s not on the ballot, there are only a few write-in registrations, but look how far we’ve come.

The reason that we are gathering tonight is because we are so passionate about liberty, the spirit of liberty is stronger than ever. I certainly believe this. I hope you do too.

But, more importantly, I hope everyone treats each other better tonight, tomorrow, and beyond. As the late Joseph P. Abell, whom I used to call “Papa Joe” and who, as my drama and English instructor and yearbook advisor as well as my drama club director and old friend, used to say, “If you can’t boost, don’t knock. If you can’t support, why are you here?” I’ve lived by them then, I live by them now, and I’ll live by them for the rest of my life. He presented those words to me and to my graduating class in our senior year in spring of ’93. How proud he would be of me today if he were to know how far I’ve come.

I’m proud of you guys today because of how far we’ve come. And you should be proud. You’ve worked for it. You’ve worked really hard for it. Be the best that you can be, in this Party and for liberty. Make the most of it for the rest of your life. It’s worth it. Make every moment count, because you’ll never have it again.

Tonight’s convention will be exciting. Why? Because we get to choose the direction of the Party. When Tom, with me at his side in 2006, decided to create and build this wonderful party, I couldn’t turn him away. I HAD to help him. The LP betrayed me. But I know, for many of you, it betrayed you. It has betrayed its values, its beliefs, and its ideas. It is now living a lie.

We’ve accomplished far more than the LP has ever had in its 30-plus year history. And we should be proud of it. And yet there’s more to do. We must do more for liberty. The battle for the heart and soul of human liberty in this country is not over. As another old saying goes, “It ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings.”

And that fat lady won’t be singing anytime soon. We must fight for liberty. We must fight it ideologically, politically, intellectually, morally, ethically, financially, and consistently. We cannot turn to the Dark Side that the LP has. We must be more vigilant, now more than ever.

My endorsements for the candidates tonight are:

Chair: Jason Gatties

Vice Chair: Doug Gaking

Secretary: Michelle Luetge

At Large: Steve Newton, Neil Kiernan Stephenson, Steve Trinward, and Tom Knapp

Those are good, brave souls with passionate ideas. We must unite behind them now. Please, I beg you to do this. This is our last chance for survival.

Do it for our children. Do it for our country. But, more importantly, do it for our liberty.

Thank you, God and Goddess Bless Us, and God and Goddess Bless America and the world. Our survival depends upon it.

Yours in Liberty,

Todd Andrew Barnett
Former Vice Chair, Boston Tea National Committee
Proud BTP Member and Wiccan

I hope everyone likes it. It made me smile the entire time I re-read it.

Boston Tea Party convention starts this evening

In Activism, Boston Tea Party, Candidate Endorsement, Libertarian, Politics, Thomas L. Knapp on October 24, 2008 at 8:39 pm

The Boston Tea Party starts its online convention this evening (Friday, October 24th) at 9pm ET.  The party will be voting in new officers, as well as voting upon various proposals.

The convention continues for 24 hours, and ends on Saturday, October 24th at 8:59pm ET.  If candidates and proposals are not resolved pursuant to their Bylaws, futher polling cycles will start, each running 24 hours, until a final candidate / proposal decision is made.  

I am excited to note that some of our most respected LFV contributors – including George Donnelly and Thomas Knapp – are running for BTP office.  

Tom Knapp is of course also the founder of the Boston Tea Party, and in my opinion showed excellent logic, temperament, and leadership ability in his handling of a controversy which recently resulted in the resignation of multiple BTP officers and officer candidates.  I therefore very highly endorse Tom Knapp, as he has proven his ability to handle any situation which may arise, no matter how delicate or controversial.

Additionally, a couple of other BTP candidates are also well known to LFV readers, including Jason Gatties (a longtime contributor who took a break to work on his local political campaign) and Steve Newton (“Delaware Libertarian”, whose writing has regularly appeared on LFV with his permission).

The current Chair is not running for reelection, and the Vice Chair recently resigned along with multiple At-Large Representatives.  Interestingly, as a result, the only incumbent is Michelle Luetge for Secretary.

Both Chair candidates have BTP blogs, which you can read to get a feel for both candidates.

You can read Jason Gatties’ BTP blog.

Here is George Donnelly’s BTP blog.

I was especially impressed to see that Jason Gatties actually nominated George Donnelly to run against him, in the belief that competition will only make the party stronger.  What a great attitude!  Either Jason or George would be excellent as Chair, in my opinion, so the BTP is lucky to have them as candidates. 

In the meantime, here is the election information from the BTP website, which (thanks to Tom Knapp!) LFV readers are the very first to see.

Per the bylaws, each member may vote for one candidate for each office; polls repeat as necessary until either one candidate, or NOTA, receives a majority. Each polling cycle runs 24 hours, beginning at 9pm Eastern, October 24th, 2008. Human candidates listed in alphabetical order by last name.

Chair
George Donnelly
Jason Gatties
None of the Above

Vice-Chair
Douglass Gaking
Matty Grossman
None of the Above

Secretary
Michelle Luetge
None of the Above

Election of At-Large National Committee Members

Per the bylaws, at-large national committee members are elected by “approval voting.” Each member may cast one vote for each candidate whom that member supports; the four candidates who receive the most votes are elected. Because of technical issues (no “approval voting” module available for this version of the site’s software), each candidate appears in a separate poll. YOU MUST VOTE IN A SEPARATE POLL FOR EACH CANDIDATE WHOM YOU SUPPORT IF YOU WANT THAT SUPPORT TO COUNT. These polls remain open for the duration of the convention. Human candidates listed in reverse alphabetical order by last name.

Candidates
Steve Trinward
Neil Kiernan Stephenson
Darryl W. Perry
Steve Newton
Andrew Martin
Thomas L. Knapp
Bill Jones
Matty Grossman

Bylaws Proposals (from committee)

This space will link to bylaws amendments recommended by the national committee/bylaws committee for polling. Each member may cast one vote (“yes” or “no”) on adoption of each proposal. Per the bylaws, polling on these proposals will last 24 hours, beginning at the opening of the convention, with with 2/3 or more of voting members’ support required to adopt an amendment.

Committee Bylaws Proposal #1

The Bylaws Committee proposes a change to Article 9, Section h, which states,

“Any action of the National Committee may be appealed by Party members comprising 5% or more of the membership, said appeal to be transmitted or called to the attention of both the Chair and the Secretary. In the case of such appeal, the appeal shall be published to the Party’s web site and the Party’s membership shall be polled on the question of whether to sustain or uphold the Committee’s action to suspend. The poll shall open within 10 days of the appeal’s publication, and shall remain open for 10 days. The National Committee’s action shall be overturned by a vote of 2/3 or more among voting members.”

The change would be the section which says “5% or more of the membership” to “5 or more party members,” so that the complete section will be as follows:

“Any action of the National Committee may be appealed by Party members comprising 5 or more party members, said appeal to be transmitted or called to the attention of both the Chair and the Secretary. In the case of such appeal, the appeal shall be published to the Party’s web site and the Party’s membership shall be polled on the question of whether to sustain or uphold the Committee’s action to suspend. The poll shall open within 10 days of the appeal’s publication, and shall remain open for 10 days. The National Committee’s action shall be overturned by a vote of 2/3 or more among voting members.”

(the changed section is in bold)

Committee Bylaws Proposal #2

The Bylaws Committee proposes the addition of Article 8, Section i:

“Officers of the National Committee may serve no more than two consecutive terms in the same national party office.”

Committee Bylaws Proposal #3

The Bylaws Committee proposes the addition of Article 9, Section i:

“National Committee members, under any circumstances, are strictly prohibited from working for the party’s nominated Presidential or Vice-Presidential candidates in a public, official capacity while serving their terms on the National Committee. Officers who wish to engage in such activity shall either resign their seats from the National Committee or recuse themselves from an official public and political capacity while serving on the Board.

“1) Official capacity is defined as any campaign officer, manager or coordinator of campaign activities, any person listed in campaign web sites or documents as member of the campaign, and anyone otherwise involved with the national campaign in a paid or voluntary capacity.

“2) Other activities such as assisting with ballot access in a voluntary capacity, donating personally to a campaign, and promoting the campaign as an individual supporter are acceptable.

“3) Members of the National Committee may run for the party’s nomination for President or Vice President. While running for the party’s nomination, National Committee members must recuse themselves from all voting in any National Committee decisions until after the nomination is complete. If nominated to run for national office, a member of the National Committee must resign from the committee.”

Bylaws Proposals (from the membership)

After the adoption or rejection of the national committee/bylaws committee’s proposals, bylaws proposals shall be solicited from the membership in a post linked to from this space. Proposals shall be submitted via the appended comment form, and polls shall be linked to from this space. Each proposal moved and seconded in this manner, within 24 hours of the solicitation posting, shall be considered concurrently with all others, with proposal polls open for 24 hours. Each proposal receives the support of 2/3 or more of the voting members shall be deemed adopted.

Program Proposals (from committee)

This space will link to program points recommended by the national committee/program committee for polling. Each member may cast one vote (“yes” or “no”) on adoption of each point. Per the bylaws, polling on these points will last 24 hours, beginning at the opening of the convention, with 2/3 or more of voting members’ support required to adopt a program point. If fewer than five program points are adopted, the floor will be open for member proposal of additional points.

Committee Point Proposal #1

Foreign Policy: The Iraq War must end as quickly as possible with removal of all our soldiers from the region. We must initiate the return of our soldiers from around the world, including Korea, Japan, Europe and the entire Middle East. We must cease the war propaganda, threats of a blockade and plans for attacks on Iran, nor should we re-ignite the cold war with Russia over Georgia. We must be willing to talk to all countries and offer friendship and trade and travel to all who are willing. We must take off the table the threat of a nuclear first strike against all nations.

Committee Point Proposal #2

Privacy: We must protect the privacy and civil liberties of all persons under US jurisdiction. We must repeal or radically change the Patriot Act, the Military Commissions Act, and the FISA legislation. We must reject the notion and practice of torture, elimination of habeas corpus, secret tribunals, and secret prisons. We must deny immunity for corporations that spy willingly on the people for the benefit of the government. We must reject the unitary presidency, the illegal use of signing statements and excessive use of executive orders.

Committee Point Proposal #3

The National Debt: We believe that there should be no increase in the national debt. The burden of debt placed on the next generation is unjust and already threatening our economy and the value of our dollar. We must pay our bills as we go along and not unfairly place this burden on a future generation.

Committee Point Proposal #4

The Federal Reserve: We seek a thorough investigation, evaluation and audit of the Federal Reserve System and its cozy relationships with the banking, corporate, and other financial institutions. The arbitrary power to create money and credit out of thin air behind closed doors for the benefit of commercial interests must be ended. There should be no taxpayer bailouts of corporations and no corporate subsidies. Corporations should be aggressively prosecuted for their crimes and frauds.

Program Proposals (from the membership)

In the event that fewer than five committee-proposed program points are adopted above, this space will link to a member proposal space and polls on proposed points. Points will be polled in the order proposed and seconded, with no more polls running than would cause the program to exceed five points if all were adopted. Each proposal will be polled for 12 hours, with 2/3 or more of voting members’ support required to adopt a program point.

Resolutions

At the opening of the convention, this space will link to a resolution solicitation post. All members may move resolutions (statements of the party exclusive of its platform, program or bylaws). All resolutions moved and seconded within 24 hours of the opening of solicitation space will be polled. Polls will run for 24 hours; resolutions supported by 2/3 or more of voting members will be adopted.

LFV readers, what do you think of the candidates and proposals? Please note your endorsements, as well as any concerns, in the comments section.

The Boston Tea National Committee Passes Anti-Congressional Bailout Resolution

In Politics on October 13, 2008 at 12:46 pm

The Boston Tea National Committee passed a resolution that I authored by Yours Truly. It passed by a majority vote (4 yes, 3 not voting, 0 no).

It officially denounces the $850 billion congressional bailout that was signed into law by W. himself.

Here’s the official text of the party’s resolution:

Resolution #00001

A Resolution to Denounce the $850 Billion Congressional Bailout Package

Introduced: October 8, 2008

Amended: October 9, 2008, October 11, 2008, and October 12, 2008

Passed by the BTNC on October 13, 2008

Sponsor: Boston Tea Party Vice Chairman Todd Andrew Barnett

Sponsors: BTNC At-Large Representative Elle Larkin, BTNC Secretary Michelle Luetge, and BTNC At-Large Representative Kent McManigal

 

Whereas, the United States Congress, consisting of the U.S. House of Representatives and the United States Senate, passed an $850 billion congressional bailout package by a vote of 263-171, and

Whereas, the bailout will tack on an additional $112 billion to the current deficit over a period of five years because the legislation contains no provision to dramatically cut spending and tax levels, and

Whereas, the pork-barrel laced bill is laden with a gamut of tax breaks and subsidies to numerous tax-funded welfare recipients, including, but not limited to the following:

·         Renewable energy credit

·         Tax and energy credits for a variety of boondoggles such as small wind property, geothermal heating pump systems, biodiesel and renewable diesel, increases in and special rules for the coal excise tax, etc.

·         Extensions of the alternative extension tax, new market credits, deductions for state and local sales taxes, etc.

·         Mental health parity

·         Indian employment credit

And

·         Puerto Rican and Virgin Island rum producers, and

Whereas, the ballooned bailout package passed by both Houses of the Congress and signed into law by President George W. Bush has an estimated 442 pages, and the original bailout bill, which failed by a vote of 205-228, had an estimated 110 pages,

Whereas, the United States Senate voted in favor of the $850 billion bailout package by a vote of 74-26 in the interests of its lobbyists and special interest groups and against the wishes of the American people,

Whereas, the people of the United States of America contacted their 434 elected representatives and 100 elected senators and urged them to vote against this unconstitutional measure,

Whereas, government rules, regulations, and edicts such as the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 have made it possible for low-income and minority credit risky homeowners to take out mortgages to make mal-investments on their home purchases, mortgage firms to lower their underwriting standards and issue risky loans furthering the moral hazard of the credit, real estate, banking, and mortgage markets,

Whereas, the revisions to the CRA in the 1980s that were authored and passed by Congress and signed into law by President George H.W. Bush as part of the Financial Institutions Reform Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA) were made in response to the actions by Senator John McCain (R-AZ), former Senator John Glenn (D-OH), former Senator Alan Cranston (D-CA), former Senator Don Riegle (D-MI), and former Senator Dennis DeConcini (D-AZ) as part of the Keating Five scandal,

Whereas, the revisions to the CRA in response to the above-mentioned Keating five politicians were signed into law by then-President George H.W. Bush to allegedly increase public oversight of the process of issuing CRA ratings to banks, require the federal agencies to issue those CRA ratings publicly and written performance evaluations using facts and data to support the agencies’ conclusions, and mandate a four-tiered CRA examination rating system with performance levels of “Outstanding,” “Satisfactory,” “Needs to Improve,” and “Substantial Noncompliance,” and

Whereas, the revisions to the CRA in the 1990s that were authored and passed by Congress and signed into law by President William Jefferson Clinton as part of the Gramm-Leach-Billey Act of 1999 were made to repeal part of the Glass-Steagall Act as an alleged form of partial deregulation of the banking industry by prohibiting banks from expanding to insurance and securities unless they adhered to the provisions of the CRA,

Whereas, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 puts onerous requirements on CEOs and CFOs to be responsible for any errors, even honest mistakes, in their public company’s books, and has driven company formation and public offerings offshore, and

Whereas, Sarbanes-Oxley also has added hugely to the burden for opening new banks and innovating in an industry which still uses 1969 telex technology to send bank wires,

Whereas, the bloated unconstitutional bill violates the letter of the Constitution because spending bills must be passed in the House first and the Senate second before it heads to the President’s desk in the Oval Office, and

Whereas, the bailout has failed to rescue the entire financial services industry from financial doom, furthering the plummeting of the Dow Jones, the NASDAQ, and the entire stock market, then

Be it resolved that the Boston Tea National Committee denounces, opposes, and condemns the $850 billion bailout package, as it deepens the financial crisis on Wall Street and Main Street and fleeces the American taxpayers of their hard-earned money to bailout companies, a practice that can be easily called economic fascism (or corporate socialism), and

Calls upon the federal government to dramatically deregulate the entire mortgage and financial services industries and abolish agencies such as the Securities and Exchange Commission, repeal laws such as the CRA and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and the abolition of government-backed institutions such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the Federal Reserve Board and its regional banks, and

Calls for the liquidation of assets of the Federal Reserve, its Board of Governors, its Governors, and its banks upon the write-offs of its liabilities and closing and elimination of its branches, and

Calls for the investigation and prosecution of Democratic and Republican congressmen who were significantly complicit in their actions supporting the government-propped and government-backed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac enterprises, the bailout package, and the subsidies to organizations like them and the fraudulent activities linked to and associated with them, and

Calls for the reduction or elimination of income, withholding, and all other taxes on productivity and consumption and the burden on entrepreneurs,

Calls for an introduction of a way to compete with the Federal Reserve in the interim and the repeal of legal tender laws, which prohibit a competitive free market currency system,

Calls for all bills for raising revenue to originate in the House of Representatives, as the bailout bill that originated in the Senate calls for raising revenue and has changed the current tax code and regulations, and thus is unconstitutional,

Encourages the incremental move from the state capitalistic system comprising of a mixed (fascistic) economy to a laissez-faire (free market) capitalism, and

Reinforces the need for federal and state accountability on the corrupt, fraudulent, and rotten actions of the regulators, bureaucrats, and corporatists aligned with the banking, financial, and mortgage sectors, and thus

The Boston Tea National Committee repudiates the fascistic and socialist direction of the United States, the legislative actions of the Congress, and the executive actions and directives by the President of the United States, especially with respect to its support for the bailout and its support for subsidizing, coddling, protecting, and backing Wall Street, Main Street, and the financial services industry.

 

If you have any comments, feedback, please email me. I’d love to hear it.

 

Like Oktoberfest, only with tea

In Boston Tea Party, Charles Jay, Libertarian, Presidential Candidates, Thomas L. Knapp on September 27, 2008 at 6:48 pm

Posted at Boston Tea Party website by Tom Knapp

Y’all,

The time period between now and the November 4th election is prime time for growing the party. Let’s give America some October surprises!

This week, our presidential candidate, Charles Jay, “got official” in two more states — Arizona and Montana. Not full ballot access, but write-in status. The activists in Arizona who decided to make that happen got it done in two days! “Favorite son” Barry Hess is the veep pick there. Expect to see some more write-in filings soon.

The presidential campaign also just invested in an advertising buy through Google ads, expressly aimed at party-building via an intro page on this site.

You can link to that intro page, too, of course, and we hope you will. For that matter, nobody’s going to stop you from throwing a little money into ad campaigns of your own to flog it!

Other upcoming stuff:

– I’ll be on-site (or, rather, as close as the Secret Service will let me get) in St. Louis, Missouri for the October 2nd “major party” vice-presidential debate. One of the party’s strongest supporters just sent me four marvelous “JAY-KNAPP — VOTE BOSTON TEA PARTY” signs to wave. They’re nice, big signs, too. We’re going to have a visible presence … if you’d like to be part of it, just show up and look for those signs!

Charles Jay debates all the other presidential candidates who aren’t chicken on October 6th at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee.

– More media coming soon — I’ll get times, channels, etc. up as soon as they’re firm.

Yours in liberty,
Tom Knapp
Founder and 2008 Vice-Presidential Nominee
Boston Tea Party

Boston Tea Party Presidential candidate Charles Jay answers Obama-McCain debate questions

In Barack Obama, Boston Tea Party, Charles Jay, John McCain, Libertarian, Media, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Thomas L. Knapp on September 27, 2008 at 3:29 pm

Posted at cj08.com

(I wasn’t invited to Friday night’s presidential debate, but you knew I was going to weigh in anyway. My “participation” comes in the way of interspersing my responses into the actual text of the debate, which you will see below. All of those responses to the questions asked by moderator Jim Lehrer are in bold type. We ditched the rules for this one, and I used remarks in the rebuttal process as I felt were necessary; for the most part, since I had the advantage of being the last to answer, so to speak, I did single responses. This transcript is so long that it is being divided into two parts – the first is the part of the debate that explored financial issues, namely the bailout, which running mate Tom Knapp probably more accurately calls the “Ripoff”. The part that explores Iraq and foreign policy will come later on )

LEHRER: Good evening from the Ford Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Mississippi in Oxford. I’m Jim Lehrer of the NewsHour on PBS, and I welcome you to the first of the 2008 presidential debates between the Republican nominee, Senator John McCain of Arizona, and the Democratic nominee, Senator Barack Obama of Illinois.

(And the Boston Tea Party nominee, Charles Jay)

The Commission on Presidential Debates is the sponsor of this event and the three other presidential and vice presidential debates coming in October.

Tonight’s will primarily be about foreign policy and national security, which, by definition, includes the global financial crisis. It will be divided roughly into nine-minute segments.

Direct exchanges between the candidates and moderator follow-ups are permitted after each candidate has two minutes to answer the lead question in an order determined by a coin toss.

The specific subjects and questions were chosen by me. They have not been shared or cleared with anyone.

The audience here in the hall has promised to remain silent, no cheers, no applause, no noise of any kind, except right now, as we welcome Senators Obama and McCain.

(APPLAUSE)

Let me begin with something General Eisenhower said in his 1952 presidential campaign. Quote, “We must achieve both security and solvency. In fact, the foundation of military strength is economic strength,” end quote.

With that in mind, the first lead question.

Read the rest of this entry »

Boston Tea Party’s Charles Jay on Fox News

In Politics on September 21, 2008 at 4:15 pm

Why Multiple Freedom Parties Is Dumb

In Libertarian Party-US on September 13, 2008 at 7:41 pm
Tom Knapp and George Phillies and Carl Milsted are very smart guys, but offering multiple  parties/candidates to the voters in our quadrant of Nolan space is dumb for multiple reasons:
  • Having multiple liberty-oriented choices tells voters that libertarianism is too incoherent to be worth understanding.
  • Having multiple liberty-oriented choices tells voters that the freedom movement is too poorly organized to be worth supporting.
  • Having multiple liberty-oriented choices vastly increases the cognitive/investigative burden imposed on a voter asked to cast her single vote for liberty.
  • Having multiple liberty-oriented choices tells politicians that pro-freedom voters are far from being a coherent caucus whose votes can be earned (e.g. by the party not running an opposing candidate).
  • Getting liberty-oriented candidates on the ballot requires a threshold amount of signatures/fees.
  • Getting a liberty-oriented party ballot-qualified requires a threshold amount of voter registration and/or votes in statewide races.
  • American elections generally do not allow fusion voting.
  • American elections do not allow approval voting, but instead uses plurality voting.
  • Duverger’s Law suggests the natural tactical response of voters to plurality voting is to gather into two parties straddling the political center along its major axis, or into one party for each natural cluster of voters in the political space.

A party should focus on the exercises of franchise whose effectiveness is magnified when the franchisees act in concert rather than through competing organizations. There’s no interesting limit to how many liberty-oriented parties we could indulge in creating. With over 20 free variables in libertarian theory, that’s over a million potential parties even if you assume only two possible values to each variable.  If two liberty-oriented parties are better than one, why aren’t 20 better than 2?  Why shouldn’t every intra-party caucus be its own party?

There are at least two possible exceptions to this analysis.  The first would be when the dominant freedom party has become immune to repair through caucus efforts and needs to be destroyed and replaced.   I for one am nowhere near ready to make war on the LP, and I’ll gladly defend the LP from those who make war on it.  Whatever the faults of the LP and its current nominee — faults I’ve never been shy about naming — they aren’t serious enough to stop telling the average voter she should always take the single choice called “Libertarian” whenever it’s available.  Democracy is an incredibly blunt instrument, and we can’t delude ourselves that the ballot box is a place for making subtle philosophical distinctions.  Remember, if every voter had as much political passion as we Libertarian activists, the streets would run red with blood — and plenty of it would be ours.

The second exception would be a zero-government abolitionist anarchist party.  I don’t mind working with anarchists wise enough to realize it’s harder to overthrow a big State than a small State — as long as they don’t insist the party endorse their abolitionist rhetoric (and thus help the State resist the party’s efforts to shrink it!).  However, having a separate anarchist party would be useful in clarifying that the LP has no official plans to abolish the state, and would siphon off radicals who fret too much about the LP’s lessarchist tent getting bloated with people lacking sufficient hatred of the state.

The Barr is closed, the W.A.R. is over

In Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Politics on September 13, 2008 at 3:06 pm

Unless some major uproar takes place between now and 51 days from now — and in Libertarian politics it seems there has been a major uproar every 20 minutes or so for the past week and a half — I do not plan to comment publicly any further on the LP’s Bob Barr/Wayne Allyn Root ticket until at least Election Day. I have made up my mind about the ticket, and to engage in further carping would be counterproductive. This is not to say the efforts of those in the LP who are working to replace Barr are “carping”; just that since I have no official role, my own input will not help anyone much.

For those who wish to see Barr off the ballot and a more palatable candidate inserted, I wish you luck. For those who have decided to continue to back Barr despite all the hullaballoo, I wish you luck as well. In the end, this presidential campaign is about expanding the libertarian cause, and I hope any sincere effort at doing so will be fruitful.

Despite my fears last weekend that I might not be long for the LP, I have actually become more committed to it over the past few days. I see a lot of good folks trying their best to deal with difficult realities, and to work through genuine differences on approach and philosophy. So I will be sticking around, and after the election is over, I hope to help re-establish the LP of the District of Columbia. As I’ve noted elsewhere, I am not a leader — I’ve discovered throughout my career that I’m bad at running the show, though I am a fine lieutenant. I again offer my help to any credible libertarian effort that could use it.

While I am sticking with the LP, I also have worked through my concerns about the Boston Tea Party and gotten involved with it as well. (I expect to vote for the BTP’s Charles Jay/Thomas Knapp ticket in November, though I always reserve the right to change my mind right up until I cast my wasted vote.) I do not see the LP and BTP as competitors but as complements. I do not feel the need to restrict myself to one favorite food, favorite film, or even favorite religion, so why should I feel bound to support only one political party? The goal is the expansion of freedom, not the triumph of a faction. I am favorably disposed to Dr. George Phillies‘s new Liberty For America organization as well.

I admit to early skepticism about the BTP. When I thought about it, the only reasons were that it was tiny and new, and the LP was long established. But those who first heard about the “Livingroom Party” in December 1971 must have found it tiny and new as well, and I expect more than a few felt sheepish about casting their votes for John Hospers, on the ballot in two states. Is that much different from Charles Jay in 2008, on the ballot in at least four?

It was perhaps fate that led me to start reading “Radicals For Capitalism” by Brian Doherty (a.k.a. Mr. Angela Keaton) this week. As a reasonably bright fellow who has a hard time getting his head around theory and philosophy, I am finding it very helpful in understanding the philosophical roots of what we, and I, believe. So until the election, I will stick to my studies (and to my IPR reporting and LFV commenting), and leave the LP political battles to the warriors.

Boston Tea Party completes Tennessee ballot drive

In Boston Tea Party, Charles Jay, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Press Release, Thomas L. Knapp on August 23, 2008 at 12:23 am

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
08/21/08
POC Thomas L. Knapp
media@bostontea. us
314-750-6993

BOSTON TEA PARTY COMPLETES TENNESSEE BALLOT DRIVE

Nashville, TN – America’s new libertarian alternative wrapped up its first-ever ballot access petition drive today as Boston Tea Party representatives turned in petition signatures and other paperwork to state election officials.

Once the signatures are certified by Tennessee’s Secretary of State, presidential candidate Charles Jay and vice-presidential candidate Thomas L. Knapp will be set to appear on Tennessee ballots in November. The petitioners turned in more than 400 signatures just before today’s deadline. Tennessee law requires 275 valid signatures.

“Our ambition is to give freedom-lovers in the Volunteer State a libertarian alternative to John McCain and Barack Obama,” said Jay, 47, of Hollywood Florida. “Our petitioners, the voters who stepped forward to put us on the ballot, and the electors who agreed to cast their Electoral College votes for us should we carry the state made that possible today, and they have my heartfelt thanks.”

Jay and Knapp were nominated in June by the party’s national membership, which conducts its operations entirely online. The party was founded in 2006 and campaigns on a single-sentence platform: “The Boston Tea Party supports reducing the size, scope and power of government at all levels and on all issues, and opposes increasing the size, scope and power of government at any level, for any purpose.” In addition to Tennessee, the party’s presidential slate will appear on the ballot in Colorado, Florida and Louisiana. A volunteer petition drive is ongoing in Alabama and the party may seek ballot access in other states as well.

Boston Tea Party web site:
http://www.bostontea.us

Latest Boston Tea Party endorsements, organizational news

In Chris Bennett, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Local Politics, Politics on August 13, 2008 at 11:43 am

Latest affiliates and endorsements from the Boston Tea Party

New news at the top 12 August 2008 The Boston Tea Party’s national committee has voted to endorse Tom Knapp for Congress in Missouri. Tom represents the Libertarian Party in that race. Our Indiana affiliate has voted to endorse Rex Bell in Indiana.

10 August 2008 Our ranks continue to swell. We now have 222 members on this site, 276 on our main Facebook group. We added a Kansas group to our set of affiliate groups on Facebook. http://www.new.facebook.com/group.php?gid=27131827190

Invite your friends to join the party today!

8 August 2007 The Boston Tea Party national committee has unanimously endorsed George Phillies for president of the United States and Chris Bennett for vice president in the states of New Hampshire and Massachusetts, where the two are on the ballot representing the Libertarian Party. The vote was six in favor with one not voting (Chris Bennett is an at-large member of the Boston Tea Party’s national committee and chose not to vote given his conflict of interest in the result).

Commenting on the news, Boston Tea Party chair Jim Davidson said, “We nominated Charles Jay and Tom Knapp for the offices of president and vice president of the United States because we did not find the nominees of the Libertarian Party to be suitable. We did not do so because we have any essential objection to the Libertarian Party, nor to many of the fine people working within it. We did so because we wanted a libertarian candidate to be on the ballot. Obviously, we don’t have time to get our candidates on the ballot in every state. So, we were especially gratified to learn that actual libertarians who favor smaller government on all issues and at all levels are on the ballot in New Hampshire and in Massachusetts.”

Charles Jay may qualify as a write-in candidate in either state for those Boston Tea Party enthusiasts for whom there are no substitutes. New Hampshire has officially declared that George Phillies will be on its ballot, and unless a lawsuit brought by the ACLU changes things in Massachusetts, George and Chris are also on the ballot there. While it is clear that neither Charles nor George is going to be president at the beginning of next year, it is essential that there be presidential candidates to carry the message of libertarian values to the American people in this election year. The national committee of the Boston Tea Party regards it as excellent news that there happen to be two presidential candidates qualified to carry that message this year.

7 August 2008 BTP at-large representative Chris Bennett has accepted the request of George Phillies to be his running mate in New Hampshire. The national committee is considering an endorsement for the two in NH and Massachusetts, where they’ll be on the ballot.

29 July 2008 Good news everybody! We’re officially a party in Florida, so members there can register to vote as Boston Tea Party-goers. We have a team in Florida putting together electors for the ballot application there. The same is true in Tennessee and in Louisiana. The Jay campaign is raising funds for ballot access work in other states – visit CJ08.com for details.

We have affiliates forming in several states. If your state isn’t listed on our contact page, please contact the chairman for help in forming one! We now have over 200 members on this site and nearly 250 members on our Facebook group.

Press Release: Todd Andrew Barnett on formation of Boston Tea Party of Michigan

In Libertarian, Politics on August 11, 2008 at 7:45 pm

For Immediate Release
POC, Todd Andrew Barnett, BTPMI Chair
ToddAndrewBarnett@ gmail.com
(586) 725-9218

New Baltimore, MI (Cyberia) — A new political party, spun off from the Libertarian Party of Michigan, is now in existence, and it is another libertarian party. It is called the Boston Tea Party of Michigan, an affiliate of the national Boston Tea Party that was formed in July of 2006. The state party, which has been in existence since June 11, has announced that it has opened its doors to the masses at large.

The party, which is also known as the BTPMI, has a website and boasts a platform which states the following:

The Boston Tea Party of Michigan supports reducing the size, scope and power of government at all levels and on all issues, and opposes increasing the size, scope and power of government at any level, for any purpose.

It is quickly becoming the fastest libertarian alternative in the already-established third party movement. There is even a Facebook group, which has 16 members to date.

“When LP presidential candidate Bob Barr got the nomination and Wayne Allyn Root got the vice presidential nom as well, the ball was dropped the minute it was announced that they came out of the convention as victors,” said Boston Tea Party of Michigan Chairman Todd Andrew Barnett. “The results of the convention energized libertarians and all advocates of liberty to resurrect the moribund Boston Tea Party, and the rest, as they say, is history.”

The BTPMI, which was recognized as an affiliate of the Boston Tea Party on June 11, now showcases its bylaws and platform. While membership is very low in the new party, Barnett hopes to bolster support for this new vehicle. “My plan is to recruit as many new Boston Tea Party and Boston Tea Party of Michigan members as possible,” he said. “My hope is that, if we get more former Libertarians, former Republicans, former Democrats, many Independents, and people from all walks of life into this party, we will become a stronger force to be reckoned with. I hope we can achieve that. I certainly won’t get my hopes up, but it is my belief that some good things will happen from now until in the future.”

Barnett hopes that a founding state convention will be held later this year but before the November elections. He even hopes that membership will go up, although he’s not expecting a huge increase in its first year. “I’m not expecting long lines to show up at the door,” he said. “But I’m confident that more people will see us, like what we stand for, and support us financially and politically.”

He hopes that the Boston Tea message will reach Michigan voters and other citizens in the state. “If you’re concerned about high taxes, too many regulations, the state’s economy going down the tubes, and the government intruding in your wallet and personal life, this is the Party for you,” he said. “We, the members of the Boston Tea Party of Michigan, want the government out of your life as much as possible. If you agree with us, you’re a perfect fit for the Boston Tea Party and the Boston Tea Party of Michigan.”

The Boston Tea Party was organized in 2006 in the aftermath of the LP’s Portland, Oregon convention, in which over 80 percent of the party’s platform was scrapped. The Party boasts a platform which reads the following:

The Boston Tea Party supports reducing the size, scope and power of government at all levels and on all issues, and opposes increasing the size, scope and power of government at any level, for any purpose.

Jason Gatties to seek Boston Tea Party National Vice Chair seat

In Libertarian on July 16, 2008 at 2:34 pm

The following is a press release from the Jason Gatties campaign

For Immediate Release

Saint Joseph, Mi- 2008 Lake Michigan College Board of Trustees candidate Jason Gatties has announced that he will seek the office of Vice-Chairman of the Boston Tea Party National Committee. The election will be held in late October.

The Boston Tea Party was founded in 2006 and has become the fastest growing libertarian alternative party. The party features “The World’s Smallest Political Platform”, which reads:

The Boston Tea Party supports reducing the size, scope and power of government at all levels and on all issues, and opposes increasing the size, scope and power of government at any level, for any purpose.

“It is my goal to help the Boston Tea Party continue to grow and eventually become what the Libertarian Party once was”-Jason Gatties

Jason has launched a campaign site, located at http://gatties4btp.wordpress.com, which will be completely up and running by this weekend.

Charles Jay interview on “Live From Court Street”

In Libertarian, Politics on June 27, 2008 at 2:50 pm

Jason and Cilla Gatties interviewed Boston Tea Party presidential nominee Charles Jay Wednesday 6/25, on their excellent blogtalk show, “Live From Court Street”.  The archive is available online now.

A brief history of the Boston Tea Party, part 2

In Libertarian, Politics on June 24, 2008 at 7:10 pm

Being the second part of a self-administered Q&A session (part one here), covering the history of the Boston Tea Party from the end of 2007 to mid-2008.

Q: So, how about a brief recap of what’s happened with the Boston Tea Party since the beginning of 2008?

As of the beginning of 2008, the party still looked moribund, but there were signs of stirring. The new interim chair, Jim Davidson, actively recruited new national committee members, solicited the formation of new affiliates, attended Libertarian and Constitution Party events to network, and tried to inspire real activity. This led to the party’s first major controversy, in which I was at times “the bad guy,” but it also culminated in the nomination of 2008 presidential ticket — the party’s first. As of today, we’re at 150+ registered members and have six bona fide state affiliate organizations, with others forming.

Read the rest of this entry »

A brief history of the Boston Tea Party, part one

In Politics on June 6, 2008 at 8:19 pm

Since the Boston Tea Party seems to be coming back to life (and into the internal conflicts that tend to characterize third parties), and apropos of recent discussions with GE, now seems like a nice time to briefly reprise the party’s existence from the perspective of its erstwhile founder. I’m going to do so as a self-administered Q&A.

Q: What’s with the name?

I don’t remember when I first came up with the name “Boston Tea Party,” but it was one of those “wow, that sounds like a really good name for … well, something” moments, and I registered the domain name not long after (a whois search shows that date as May 3rd, 2006).

At that point, I wasn’t thinking of using it to describe a “real” political party. My first thought was that it would be interesting to set up a web-based advocacy site and maybe even make a few bucks — people who were pissed off at their congresscritter would be able to drop in and pay a small fee to have a teabag, with their complaint printed on the tag, mailed to said politician.

Q: OK, well, things changed. What things were they, and how did they change?

It’s no secret that what prompted me to launch the BTP as an organization rather than as a project was the Libertarian Party’s 2006 national convention in Portland, Oregon. However, the details are probably a little more … detailed … than many might surmise.

Read the rest of this entry »