Archive

Archive for the ‘Libertarian’ Category

(Audio) Guest Co-Hosting The April 19th, 2017 Jeff Oravits Show

April 19, 2017 Leave a comment

By Elisha Dorfsmith

I had a great time guest co-hosting the Jeff Oravits show on 97.1 FM, The Big Talker today. We discussed the roving Flagstaff City Council Meetings, taxes, the Federal Reserve, the 17th Amendment, downtown parking meters, war in Syria, concerns about North Korea and much much more. You can listen to the entire show here:

 

18033184_194199221094572_6682430756228308418_n

Thanks to John Kistler for putting this picture together on “roving council meetings”.

17523509_10212253272224509_2568897422761615340_n

My son Adrian and I at a “No War With Syria” rally in 2013.

Is There Room For Pure Democracy In A Representative Form Of Government?

February 14, 2017 Leave a comment

By Elisha Dorfsmith

Arizona has a very progressive constitution that allows citizens to sidestep their representatives and pass their own laws. Currently, the Republicans in the legislature are trying to put a stop to this (mainly because they are terrified of legal weed). There are good arguments on both sides of this issue and the question “should pure democracy be allowed in a representative form of government” is a legitimate question.

Interestingly, Flagstaff’s progressives take both sides in this issue. I was once chastised by former Mayor Sara Presler for saying I would start the referendum process if a Property Maintenance Ordinance became law. She told me that I needed to respect our representative form of government by supporting the laws council passed.

Tonight’s Flagstaff City Council Meeting also comes to mind. There is a process in place for citizens and groups to put their own laws on the ballot and sidestep their representatives. Flagstaff Needs A Raise did it last year and Elevate Flagstaff is doing it now. Unfortunately for Elevate Flagstaff, their effort is running into possible roadblocks set by representatives on Council.

Would this whole thing be avoided if we did away with the citizen initiative process? A lot to think about. For now, here’s what the State Legislature is doing:

http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/legislature/2017/02/10/wake-minimum-wage-vote-arizona-lawmakers-look-limit-ballot-initiatives/97581064/

two_wolves_and_a_sheep_by_satansgoalie

Local Food Discussion On The Oracle Inn Podcast

October 1, 2016 Leave a comment

By Elisha Dorfsmith

I was happy to join the Oracle Inn Podcast tonight for a discussion on the many aspects of local food and urban farming. Topics covered included local rules and regulations, challenges to local food production, food education and competing with large corporations. You can watch the entire show here:

LP Loses My Vote With A Johnson/ Weld Ticket

May 31, 2016 Leave a comment

By Elisha Dorfsmith

This week’s Libertarian National Convention reaffirms that I made the right decision to register as an Independent (or party not declared) rather than a Libertarian when I left the GOP after joining the Republican Party to support Ron Paul.

The Libertarian party is supposed to be the party of principle and that means their candidates are held to a higher standard than other candidates. A Johnson – Weld ticket is not a principled ticket and does not meet my criteria. If the Libertarians had picked a principled VP I may have considered voting for Johnson but Weld’s record on a range of key liberty issues is very disturbing.

Libertarians have told me that they need Johnson and Weld to ensure that they receive enough support to have a voice in the debates…but at what cost to libertarian values? If the Libertarian Party gets into national presidential debates but does not promote the philosophy of liberty in those debates, what have they gained?

Trampling the rights of small businesses, supporting the Iraq war, defending the Patriot Act, and opposing gun rights are positions libertarians have taken a stand against for years. Why embrace candidates with those positions now? Even Donald Trump is more libertarian on issues like the 2nd Amendment.

DSCF1508

At a Gary Johnson rally at ASU in 2012. Gary Johnson of 2012 sounded much more libertarian than Gary Johnson of 2016.

 

Liberty Candidates Pull Papers In Coconino County

May 10, 2016 Leave a comment

By Elisha Dorfsmith

Many election cycles voters are forced to choose between the lesser of two evils or write in “None of the Above”. I am happy to say that this election year Coconino County residents will have some real liberty choices on the ballot that we can be proud to support. More liberty candidates may be announcing in the coming weeks but for now, in no particular order, here are some of the great choices you should see on your ballot in November:

Jonathan Apirion For Coconino County Attorney

Flagstaff Liberty Alliance member Jonathan Apirion has announced a run for Coconino County Attorney as a Libertarian. Today’s edition of the AZ Daily Sun has a great article covering his campaign HERE.

Apirion’s website has a long list of issues with well thought out perspective in the context of libertarian minded policy. Check it out and support his campaign. His website address is: apirion.org

Josh Collier For Coconino County Supervisor District 4

Flagstaff Liberty Alliance treasurer Josh Collier has announced a run as a Republican for Coconino County Supervisor District 4 which will be vacated by Mandy Metzger at the end of the year. Collier is a true liberty candidate with a focus on transparency and fiscal responsibility. Getting more citizen involvement in County issues is a priority:

“I am running for Coconino County Board of Supervisors District 4. One of the main issues I see is lack of transparency within government, and I don’t feel as though the county has made any effort to increase transparency through video and audio recording of meetings. As County session meetings are often held midday on Tuesdays, many citizens are not able to attend. For this reason, I believe increasing access to that information may increase citizen participation. The Flagstaff City Council meetings, as well as the city commission meetings, are all video recorded and I see no reason why the county should not do the same.”

Collier’s facebook page can be found HERE. Check it out and support his campaign.

Christine Gannon For Coconino County Supervisor District 3

Former Flagstaff Liberty Alliance President Christine Gannon has announced a run as a Republican for Coconino County Supervisor District 3. She will be running against four term Democrat Matt Ryan. Gannon’s campaign is also focusing on transparency as well as getting back to the basic functions of government:

“I believe that it’s time for new faces and new ideas on the County Board of Supervisors. The County needs to refocus its efforts and get back to the roots of government – road maintenance, utilities & services improvement, and creating an atmosphere that allows for sustainable economic growth.”

Gannon’s website can be found HERE. Check it out and support her campaign.

Re-elect Jeff Oravits For Flagstaff City Council

Since he was elected to the Flagstaff City Council four years ago, Councilman Jeff Oravits has worked tirelessly to ensure that issues and concerns relating to liberty are addressed. His lone vote against Flagstaff’s overreaching party ordinance is just one example of the many times he has been the single liberty voice on council.

Regarding other issues that you have read about in my blog, Oravits was the driving force at the council level for changes to the Animal Keeping ordinance that encourage and legalize urban farming in Flagstaff. He also advocated for streaming and posting all public city meetings including budget and commission meetings.

Oravits is a strong proponent for government transparency and publishes all of his council votes on his blog so the public can see how he and other council members voted. You can find his blog HERE. Check it out and support his re-election campaign.

Meet The Candidates

The candidates mentioned above, along with other candidates for local and statewide races, will be in attendance at a legislative update event hosted by Flagstaff City Councilman Jeff Oravits.

When: Monday, May 16th from 5:30 PM -7:00 PM

Where: 2501 N. 4th Street in Flagstaff

Legislative RECAP from Speaker of the House David Gowan. City update from Mayor Jerry Nabours.

FREE event, includes pizza and soft drinks.

Legislative Recap: Speaker of the House David Gowan

City Update: Mayor Jerry Nabours

Brief introduction of City Council & County Board of Supervisors Candidates by Jeff Oravits.

DSCF2096

Flagstaff City Councilman Jeff Oravits (second from left) takes time for a picture with Flagstaff Liberty Alliance at the Coconino County Fair.

Drone Bill Exempts Law Enforcement And Raises Concerns

February 16, 2016 1 comment

By Elisha Dorfsmith

A bill introduced by Republican State Senator John Kavanagh seeking to regulate private drones easily sailed through the Senate Transportation Committee at the Arizona capital this afternoon. SB1449 should clear the Senate Judiciary Committee later this week and is quickly heading for a full vote in the State Senate in the coming days.

While there are some decent arguments on all sides of this bill, the biggest concern I have with it is that it exempts law enforcement from having to follow the same rules that drone hobbyists will have to obey.

The bill summary makes this very clear:

“Allows a law enforcement agency to operate an unmanned aircraft for an investigation or a search and rescue operation.”

Digging deeper into the details, this bill says that if you fly your drone over someone’s private property without permission you are committing a misdemeanor. If you film certain facilities (prisons, hospitals, water treatment plants etc.) without written permission you are committing a felony.

On the other hand, if law enforcement is flying over and filming your backyard (or any other place) for any reason, they get a free pass to do so.

Yesterday I was interviewed by Cronkite News (Arizona PBS) about this problem and today they published a paragraph about my concerns:

“It’s not just hobbyists who would feel the impact of new regulations. Elisha Dorfsmith, a Flagstaff resident and Flagstaff Liberty Alliance board member, said he opposes Kavanagh’s bill because it doesn’t explicitly prohibit law enforcement officers from using drones without a warrant.”

You can read the entire article here:

http://cronkitenews.azpbs.org/2016/02/16/proposed-senate-bill-regulate-drones-prohibit-city-ordinances/

There are legitimate concerns that individuals may use drones to invade people’s privacy but many of these concerns are already covered under existing law. The bigger concern is passing laws that limit individual rights while exempting government from these same laws.

I would argue that government snooping is a bigger threat to my privacy than my neighbor flying his drone over my backyard.

police-drone

 

 

 

 

Urban Farming Now Legal In Flagstaff

February 12, 2016 Leave a comment

By Elisha Dorfsmith

Frequent readers of my blog know that I have long advocated for changes to existing City laws that discourage urban farming and keeping animals for food in Flagstaff.

Flagstaff Liberty Alliance and other groups I work with have put forward ordinances and resolutions and creative solutions but we have always faced a lot of opposition from various  groups in town and from some council members.

This year things were different and supporters of urban farming finally succeeded with the Flagstaff City Council approving very positive changes to the animal keeping part of the City Code by a 7-0 vote.

These changes go above and beyond anything we ever hoped for and even include the legalization of small animal slaughter and beekeeping.

Today these changes are highlighted in an excellent article in the Daily Sun which is linked below.

Thanks to everyone who got involved to make this happen and special thanks to Councilmember Jeff Oravits for being the driving force on council to get these changes approved!

You can read the Daily Sun article here:

http://azdailysun.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/fresh-flag-food/article_e22d3bc9-b24c-5f74-88d3-954fa3f8e39d.html

images

 

 

%d bloggers like this: