Letters to the Editor: July 9, 2003
Well Wishes for Carol Hill
Carol, good luck in your race for county commissioner.
As a former registered Libertarian and Libertarian candidate for state rep. who is now the Colorado contact for the Republican Liberty Caucus (www.RLC.org) and the VP of the Colorado Freedom Republicans, I applaud your decision to run as a Democrat.
Unfortunately, running as a candidate under one of the major party labels, i.e., whichever one is most likely to garner the most votes in a given area, is the only way that I think libertarians will ever get elected to partisan offices in numbers significant enough to start changing government in the direction that we want to see it changed -- smaller, less intrusive, less expensive, and more respectful individual liberties.
I hope Ari can continue to find the time and other resources he needs to keep us, i.e., Libertarians, libertarian Democrats, and libertarian Republicans, informed and connected.
Best wishes and
At the risk of making this appear to be a diet newsletter, I am compelled to comment on Ralph's "diet."
Regardless of what you read about "fat-burning" or "metabolic" or fat and carbohydrate "blockers", weight loss boils down to a simple equation:
Calories ingested = Calories used +/- change in weight.
If you eat more calories than you use, they are stored as fat. If you use more calories than you eat, your body breaks down fat and or muscle to provide them.
Ralph's "diet" succeeds if the gorge / fast strategy reduces overall calorie intake, or if the additional exercise increases overall calorie use. Both of these things are probably happening.
The exercise component is not only useful as regards the calorie equation, but also has other beneficial effects, such as improved circulation, more efficient respiration, and more effective glucose processing. Finally exercise maintains muscle mass which uses calories as opposed to fat which doesn't.
The rub comes when Ralph reaches his "target weight". Does he then go back to daily eating? Will his excess weight return? Should he then fast every third day as a maintenance program? Can he stick with this "program" for the long term?
Bravo Ralph and continue the exercise regardless. You have conquered the calorie equation for now, and I hope you can keep it at bay.
Gaar Potter, July 3
Ari Armstrong replies: While Gaar is correct that we lose weight if our body uses more calories than we consume, another important issue is what form of calories we consume. We're not going to be very healthy if we get our calories from soda pop. I am increasingly convinced a diet high in live (raw) foods and healthy oils is essential to good health.
You wrote, "When I asked him who might have done a better job on Boyles' show, Pietri named Bob Melamede, a professor at CU, Colorado Springs, and himself. 'I know every answer' to the objections of those who challenge medical marijuana, Pietri said."
I just remembered an incident that you might find relevant and interesting. Also, this can (I hope he remembers) be confirmed by Brian Schwartz.
At the Heads v. Feds debate organized by B.I.R.C.H. (Zack Taylor), Pietri was standing in front of me in line to ask questions. Before he asked his question he proudly announced that "last time (at some other debate) I had these guys on the ropes".
At the event he asked his question in such a belligerent manner that this 99%+ pro-marijuana-legalization crowd booed him loudly and there were yells for him to shut up and sit down.
Pietri's behavior is -- at best -- erratic. Hyperbolically speaking, he is, perhaps, the best poster child the opposition could use for why marijuana should be kept illegal.
Ralph Shnelvar, July 3
Ari Armstrong replies: Remember folks, that Pietri is not here to defend himself. I did not personally attend the event Ralph mentions.
I, too, watched the Peter Boyles' show on legalizing marijuana, and was disappointed in everyone's performance. I, too, think the DEA agent carried the day in the end. It didn't seem that anyone was very prepared for the taping. Off-subject tangential comments, discussions, and deliberate obfuscations were the order of the day. It seems unreasonable to me for anyone to presume the show would be about medical marijuana when Boyles, himself, said the topic was legalization of marijuana. We Libs seem to have a proclivity to read things between the lines that aren't there.
I'm sure Shnelvar's heart is in the right place, but he has a disturbing tendency to publicly open mouth with some stunningly-inappropriate comment or statement, and then insert a foot with Libertarian Party Representative printed on the sole. As a mild example, what on earth does his personal choice of diet have to do with the LP? Give us a break, Ralph. Get permission before you speak as representing the Party, and when you're speaking for yourself, say so and leave the rest of us out of it.
I realize all too well that being a libertarian at heart, and belonging to any political party, even the LP, are difficult concepts to manage concurrently. The unfortunate quagmire in the Leadville City Council menagerie is a prime example of unnecessary and unproductive libertarian infighting over who is a real Lib and who is not. None of this petty bickering over position does the cause any good, but instead gives outsiders a distorted view of what we stand for and are trying to accomplish.
You're doing a fine job with the newsletter, Ari. It is much appreciated, and my $20 will be on the way - as soon as I can find my checkbook.
Larry Conway, July 4
Ari Armstrong replies: Thanks, Larry. However, Ralph did not claim his diet is associated with the LP. In fact, he explicitly says it's not. And I'm the one who suggested he write about it. He never invoked the Libertarian Party during the Boyles show. The term "libertarian" preceeded the Libertarian Party by many years. Finally, I would not characterize the events in Leadville as "libertarian infighting over who is a real Lib and who is not."