Letters to the Editor: July 24, 2003
The Grocery Tax
Ari - wish you would send your informative report out on the weekend (Saturday) when I, and I presume others, don't have so much email and have time to read it all. I have so much to get through during the week, I only have time to skim your report.
Why are you so much against the tax on groceries? I see it as a tax that everyone pays and thus the big spenders and those that want more government, welfare, etc. can see that someone (and everyone) has to pay. I say keep the tax on groceries to help control larger government. Let the spenders say they need to increase this tax and see where it gets them. Advocates of less government can say that they can reduce this tax.
I think our state made a big mistake when they eliminated this tax many years ago.
Bob Dempsey, July 17, 2003
[Note: Bob Dempsey is a Libertarian who serves as Coroner for San Miguel County.]
Ari Armstrong Replies: Readers are, of course, welcome to let the e-mail sit in their box until they are prepared to read it. As someone who believes government is far too big, spends way too much money, and has become active in all kinds of inappropriate activities, I'm all for eliminating specific types of taxes, including the grocery tax. The argument against the grocery tax is that taxes on the poor -- who spend a greater proportion of their income on food and other necessities -- are especially hurtful.
Re: What is the proper libertarian position on gay marriages, and what is the state of leadership of the Libertarian Party of Colorado?
It is always interesting to hear how the LP board "functions." It generally comes from sources not tied to the Co Lp, for little comes from the board to "The People" they represent. Most times it seems like a little clique, wherein no one gains access to the club, without the right words, and support for those running the show.
Twice I tried to "access to the club" to help, by offering to produce the Newsletter (as a publisher & past editor of a newsletter). The first time I heard about the position was through the grapevine, when Vance was "deciding", but had not gone through channels that would have allowed the greatest variety of people to apply. Sounds like "media control."
Ari gave notice on his website that the position was "open" again. And again, I don't remember seeing this elsewhere. This second time, it was inferred that I had the position, but it was not "official". Soon, on Ari's website again, I find that he decided to take back the role of producing the newsletter, and I guess it was ok'd by the board. I had not received notice from anyone that a "decision" had been made, or that anyone else had even "applied." In fact, I was told no one had.
Judging by the professionalism, one might wonder what the board is really concerned with. I also feel that Ari, et al, may have felt that I might be "inappropriate" as an editor, because I had supported Rick Stanley (a faux pas?), back when I attended my first convention. This may be a reason for not being "selected." I don't really know, because no one even contacted me, until I complained that proper notification and consideration was extremely lacking. I got an "apology"... nothing else. As a minor note, a couple of my ideas for the news were included in Ari's comments on what he intends to do with the Liberty. One can only speculate if he already had them.
I no longer pay dues to the Co Lp (I'm a nat'l member). The best articles and information come from libertarian sources, outside the Co Lp, and from FreeColorado.com, which is excellent! Thank you Ari. Little info comes from the board about what is going on, what has been decided, what is being planned, etc... It was and is rare to get real information, news and commentary. I want open government, including the board.
Why should others feel compelled to try to become a part of what appears to be a good ol boy organization? And the LP wonders why more women aren't lining up to become part of the network.
Deb Hamm, Publisher, July 17, 2003
Ari Armstrong Replies: While I was aware Hamm had held discussions with Vance, I was not aware she was interested in the newsletter at the time I renewed discussions with the board. However, simply the fact that I produced a high-quality newsletter for two years amply demonstrates my qualifications.
As Ms. Campbell has publicly thrown down the gauntlet (letters to the Editor 7/16) in a request that I "enumerate one right granted to (myself) or anyone else by the Constitution," I hope you will consider publishing my short retort.
I could discuss the constitutionally protected rights of freedom of religion, speech, press, freedom to petition the government, and a woman's suffrage- all of which I exercise nearly every day -- or the fact that Ms. Campbell negated the mention of "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness" when quoting the Declaration of Independence, or that the interruption of the Bible has sparred just as many heated debates as the continuos reexamination of the Constitution -- or that not once have I insinuated that I am asking permission to "commit all manner of depraved and immoral acts" as that moral "rulebook" that Ms. Campbell sites and has the right to worship, must not the same as mine.
I have no intention or desire to debate private and personal religious beliefs with Ms. Campbell, Rep. Musgrave, or anyone else for that matter -- and wholeheartedly support and understand that they are firm in their religions, as I am mine.
This is not a religious issue, Amen and period.
Stephanie Shearer, July 18