Monday, April 28, 2014

Highlights from the 2014 Libertarian Party of Indiana State Convention

“I am especially thankful to all the contributors who made this year's convention a success” Dan Drexler, who has served as Libertarian Party of Indiana Chairman for one year now, told me. The members of the Libertarian Party of Indiana [LPIN] held their state convention this past weekend in Indianapolis. Some of those contributors were eight guest speakers who spoke about the current state of mainstream politics, the erosion of liberty and how citizens may move forward in regaining control of their government.

Bill Levin is a longtime entertainment promoter who was responsible for bringing local original music to venues in Broad Ripple as early as the 1980's. Bill spoke about the power of grassroots marketing and promotion to infuse the principles of liberty into public dialogue and policy. He shared some of his unorthodox approaches to generating campaign and political party interest outside of the popularly favoured two-party system. Or two factions of the Incumbent Party as I call them. Levin is also a candidate for the Indiana House of Representatives in District 96.

Matt La Fleur provided an extensive presentation on the emergence of a burgeoning police state. His website PoliceStateUSA was formed as a grassroots alternative media outlet dedicated to exposing the systemic formation of an American police state. While the United States holds 5% of the world's population it detains 25% of the world's prisoners. The site features stories that demonstrate how liberties are being eliminated in the name of “public safety.” Most disturbing are the tactics used in schools to deprive liberty to children and indoctrinate them into a big government is necessary mentality.

Myself, Stuart Showalter, presented on how citizens can effectuate public policy. I spoke about, how as a private citizen, I was able to write and get my policy objectives written into our court rules and statutory law. I detailed the various opportunities available at the state level and process by which to return the principles of liberty into state public policy. My complete written presentation is available on my website under the public policy section.

Sheila Suess Kennedy, former director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana, provided comments on upholding civil liberties. Like me, Kennedy was a Goldwater Republican who, when her principles were abandoned by the Republican Party, turned to the Democratic Party but also appears dissatisfied with their encroachment upon our liberties. While I left the Democrats she has stayed. But she seemed to feel at home speaking before Libertarians which support the principles that unite all freedom loving people. Kennedy has established the Center for Civic Liberties at IUPUI where she hopes to enlighten students about the establishment and function of government. One alarming survey results that Shelia revealed is that only 36% of Americans realize there are three branches of government in our republic.

Michael Tanner of the Cato Institute provided a comprehensive update on the so-called Affordable Care Act and detailed some of the particular way in which the act denies citizens of health care liberty. Time Magazine calls Michael Tanner, “one of the architects of the private accounts movement,” and Congressional Quarterly named him one of the nation’s five most influential experts on Social Security. Tanner also detailed the way a numbers game has been played by administration officials. Decoding those revealed the true number of people who have been added to the health insurance payment plans under O'bama Care - only about four million.

Bruno Behrend, Heartland Institute Education Policy Fellow and Melanie Hughes of the Sudbury School of Kentukiana enaged the audience in a panel discussion about the role that government is taking in schools. Behrend provided the primer necessary for better understanding from where our education policy has come and what direction it continues. These speakers tendered practical steps to providing real education to students and moving America away from the 19th century Prussian system upon which the current system of education in the United States is based.

Melyssa Hubbard's book Spanking City Hall was inspired by her travails involving the City of Indianapolis slapping her with a lawsuit that didn’t mention its real motives -- trying to shut her business down. The underlying reasons for the lawsuit involved layers of intolerance and politics as usual.  Melyssa founded the first Indiana Tea Party in 2007 and eventually won the lawsuit launched against her. Her book details those legal and political journeys while lightly providing encouragement to all individuals to maintain their personal sovereignty.

Chairman Drexler said that he was enthused by the spirit of the attendees at this years convention. “We have more candidates on the ballot this year, we are growing in numbers, and growing in support” remarked Drexler. I was equally enthused by the news that Libertarians are making strides into breaking the stranglehold that the Incumbent Party holds on mainstream politics. Stalwarts of the two faction system such as Shelia Suess Kennedy are joining the growing ranks of Libertarians. Many of us who have crossed over from Republican or Democrat to the other and still found that we are not being represented are moving to the Libertarian Party. As Dan says, “American's are being stripped of their personal liberties and having their financial decisions made for them by government. We welcome to the Libertarian Party those people who want to regain the rights taken away by the Democrats and Republicans.” People will be able to restore their liberty and get the government back in their control when the principles of the Libertarian Party are adopted. If you would like to support the effort to restore your liberty please visit the LPIN website and vote for Libertarian candidates when you see them on your ballot.

Like most people you are likely what is called the small “L” libertarian who supports libertarian principles but is not a member of the Libertarian Party. Take The World's Smallest Political Quiz [10 questions] to see where you stand on the political spectrum. If you find out that you are a supporter of libertarian principles then consider becoming a member of the Libertarian Party of Indiana.

Members of the public are invited to join Libertarians on Monday evening, 28 April 2014: 7:00pm, at La Hacienda Mexican Restaurant in Carmel for a post convention discussion about the progression of libertarian principles. Find additional details on Facebook.

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©2008, 2014 Stuart Showalter, LLC. Permission is granted to all non-commercial entities to reproduce this article in it's entirety with credit given.

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