Friday, April 27, 2018

2018 Pine Tree Riot Celebration

What? Where? The Pine Tree Riot? One of the first acts of rebellion by the American colonists? Yeah, you know Weare. The third annual Pine Tree Riot Celebration, Weare, NH, 4/26/2018...


Two Hundred and Forty Six years ago, a group of loggers from the small town of Weare, New Hampshire took the initial organized action against British tryanny in the eventual war for America's independence. This small act of resistance created a chain reaction across New England and the other colonies powered by the principles of freedom and liberty.
The Pine Tree Riot, as it came to be known, cemented New Hampshire as a place where the seeds of free and open societies grow strong. New Hampshire has served as a model of freedom to the rest of the nation ever since, and continues to lead the way. The Granite State consistently ranks among the most free states in America, and the recent years of tax reductions for employers has helped set the stage for the recent Tax Cuts and Jobs Act at the federal level.
AFP-NH invites you to join us to celebrate this important event in American history and to reflect upon the sacrifice those before us made in the fight for liberty. We will be discussing the recent efforts at the state and federal level to expand economic freedom as a reminder of the fight that continues to this day.
History & Press
Let's raise a very appropriate tankard this day to the very able Ebenezer!



Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Prohibitionist Nannies On Parade

Well, that was oppressive (but I do it for you, gentle reader). So here we are again with NH's very deliberately hand-picked "Prohibition Justification Commission", AKA, the Commission to Study the Legalization, Regulation, and Taxation of Marijuana, which has deigned this day, 4/16/2018, to hear from actual -- if not actually all that representative, if polls are any indication at all (and, too, it needs noting, mostly rent-seekers) -- citizens.

The "public comment" portion begins at about 22 minutes, following a college paper. Excepting your humble chronicler's own svelt testimony, weighing in at about a minute and a quarter, the remaining 10 average a torpor-inducing ~15.5 minutes apiece (granted, they get commodious "help" from the commission). Today's relentless catch-phrase: the ever-popular 'for the children'. Adults must simply accept being treated like children by their betters.

Here is the issue, mentioned by Commission member, Attorney Twomey a dozen ticks shy of the 19-min mark, regarding Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and his proper political intercession, on behalf of his actual constituents no less, against the DoJ's sabre-rattling regarding re-igniting the dying embers of that very "War On People Who Use (Some) Drugs"™. After that, maybe a freedom-oriented person might want to just skip to Rick Naya, the final speaker, at about 2:29:00.

The cognitive dissonance is strong in these crusaders, at least several of whom actually helpfully instruct the commission that the horrifically expensive (in blood, treasure and liberty) drug war does not work -- and yet they're here advocating that NH should continue that unwinnable drug war. Does that seem right to you -- especially if you're among, according to many polls now, the two-thirds of voters who want it ended, maybe even believe it was never authorized in the first place?

One more time. In a free, civil society, the rule of law must be respected. Therefore, in a free, civil society, servant government ought to obey its instituting Constitution. In a free, civil society, unauthorized fiat prohibitions must end. This aggression will not stand, man.

If you want prohibition -- of cannabis, or alcohol, or cigarettes, or harmful calories (watch the video, understand the "health choices" hypocrisy) -- you are first required to get the People to pass an authorizing amendment. A mere legislative statute is flatly insufficient in this Constitutional Republic. Once upon a time, even servant government understood that -- and the People eventually rectified their own grievous and costly mistake.

But no amendment is needed in order to repeal an undelegated authority. All that requires is an honest, servant government.

Uh-oh...

Thursday, March 29, 2018

If Taxpayers Can't Challenge Taxes, Who Can?

CACR15, "relating to legal actions. Providing that taxpayers have standing to bring actions against the government," before the NH Senate Rules and Enrolled Bills Committee, 3/29/2018, followed by the Committee's ultimately unconsummated Executive Session.

The only testimony nominally against the bill -- yet they're taking no official position -- comes from the Judicial Branch, which essentially "helpfully" warns (except without the "strike me down first" part)...



No one takes them seriously, at least.

So I ask again, if voting-eligible taxpayers, in government's self-written, very self-serving rulebook, may not hold their own servant government's spending accountable, who will? If taxpayers don't have "standing," don't "have skin in the game" -- by definition -- who the hell does...?

Look for this coming soon to a ballot near you. Tell your Senator you expect no less.



Your Right To Live Free

Close your eyes and take a deep sniff of this. Give it a swirl. Fill your olfactory. Its nose tells you this is well aged. Hints of liberty and expressly limited servant government. Peer through it in the strong light of day and examine its clarity. And plenty of legs, this. Now take a sip. Let it roll around on your palate. Full-bodied, to be sure. History in a glass. Solemn sincerity with just a touch of insouciance. And a rebellious finish. This belongs in any respectable Constitutional cellar. Contemplate the possibilities.

This is CACR16, "Relating to privacy. Providing that an individual's right to live free of governmental intrusion is natural, essential, and inherent." Fundamental, even, in a free society. Having cleared the NH House (a little surprisingly, really -- more on that anon), today before the Senate Rules and Enrolled Bills Committee, 3/29/2018.

It should be noted -- and the ever-bewildering Rep Horrigan should appreciate -- that he voluntarily contractually consented (and if it's not in there, then sue) to his Facebook dossier. And it is not -- ever -- government's responsibility nor prerogative to protect him from what he or it consider to be his own bad choices.

And I just gotta say again, although I've agreed with the League of Women Voters' analysis of the bill since I first because aware of it, while the potential implications concern them, I absolutely revel in the possibilities...

Look for it coming soon to a ballot near you. Tell your Senator you expect no less.



Wednesday, March 28, 2018

It's a Block(chain) Party...!

Blockchain in the Energy Sector: Can Government Be Educated?
State House presentation on blockchain in the energy sector

Tuesday, March 27 at 1 PM - 2:30 PM
Science, Technology & Energy Committee, LOB Room 304

Should it need to be in a free society, in a market economy?

The high cost of energy in NH is a statewide issue that negatively effects the business climate and economy. Our regional energy grid is arcane and centralized, being governed by ISO New England in Massachusetts. This presentation will explore the potential to transform the grid into one in which many more participants become consumers, storage providers, and producers of energy, with accounts settled using blockchain technology in a more decentralized fashion.

The presentation will be for the benefit of the committee but the public is welcome to attend.

Presenters will be:
Sandra Ro of Global Blockchain Business Council
Dr. Lee Brenner
 of Global Blockchain Business Council 
Daniel Heller, CFO of BitLumens, Switzerland
James Eggleston of PowerLedger, Australia

Intro by House Science, Technology and Energy Committee chair, Dick Barry.

(Originally Scheduled Presenters had been:
Sandra Ro of Global Blockchain Business Council
Michael Casey of MIT Media Lab, author of The Truth Machine
James Eggleston of PowerLedger, Australia
Veronica Garcia of BitLumens, Switzerland)

And, too, explore The Math Behind Bitcoin with Dr. Darren Tapp.


Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Here's What Passes for "Representative Government" in Weare

Here's some background:
'Course, the subsequently revised default budget was lowered by the Select Board from $5,997,749 only to $5,997,260, with other crap defiantly added back in. Not quite the court-ordered $60k reduction. Not quite contrite...

This recalcitrant board will get the money that it wants from the taxpayers. Screw you meddlers...

And here's the result, at the subsequent Select Board meeting of 3/5/2018 (also at 39:20 - 41:45 of the full meeting available here): 'Thanks for your input. Now piss off...'




You're paying for these shenanigans -- and yes, I call shenanigans -- Mr. and Ms Taxpayer. And needless to say, this is hardly the first time: expensive lawsuits to control servants aren't financed on a whim, after all. Thank you, Rep. Neal Kurk (longtime House Finance Committee Chairman, if knowledge of government finances and their statutes are, y'know, relevant, somehow), for the effort. One way or another, this can't be over. These incumbents simply have got to go, "leaders" and longest-tenured first. Consistently. First pass next Tuesday...

And here, at the "Meet the Candidates Night", Select Board Chair Clow's answer to a voter's early question on this very aspect of the default budget at the 9-minute mark (through 17:00) -- and then the 2nd (at 23:00, and which he protested to the Moderator) -- was truly... utterly classic Clow, who has got to go....





Next issue: Article 23 of the 2018 Weare Town Warrant (today as I amend this, 3/13/2018, is voting day, btw)

As Proposed
"Shall the Town vote to authorize the Board of Selectmen to dispose of all tax deeded property by public auction or sealed bid, regardless of its size? The authority granted in 1994 limited the selectmen’s authority to sell tax deeded property to properties of less than 5 acres (land only) or 10 acres (if developed with a residence). (Recommended by Board of Selectmen)"
(their intention being to free up the board to dispose of any damned thing they seize without any further nettlesome taxpayer oversight -- ever)


As Amended by Voters at the Deliberative Session of 2/10/2018
"Shall the Town vote to authorize the Board of Selectmen to dispose of all tax deeded property by public auction or sealed bid, regardless of its size? The authority granted in 1994 limited the selectmen’s authority to sell tax deeded property to properties of less than 5 acres (land only) or 10 acres (if developed with a residence). (Recommended by Board of Selectmen)"
(the result of this amended article, pass or fail, would be to leave them with exactly the same authority they already had -- which is, if they have any bigger properties, they have to come to the voters for permission; at present, they have only 2 such properties, so it's not actually a problem that needs "fixing", they just chafe at oversight -- or... could there actually be something even more nefarious to it...?)


(this timestamp skips the early debate and goes straight to this [2nd of the afternoon] proposed [this by your humble chronicler] amendment -- and a "struck" official paper copy of the warrant is what I handed them, so the above text is exactly what they were looking at when they modified the ballot, no excuses -- and however otherwise unclear, Moderator Foss says, "struck through the word properties", so he understood, so how the hell do we end up with...)


As Published on the Ballot for 3/13/2018
"Shall the Town vote to authorize the Board of Selectmen to dispose of all tax deeded property by public auction or sealed bid, regardless of its size? The authority granted in 1994 limited the selectmen’s authority to sell tax deeded property to properties of less than 5 acres (land only) or 10 acres (if developed with a residence). (Recommended by Board of Selectmen)"

So a dependent clause ("regardless of its size") that doesn't functionally change the meaning of the original article because it's still implied ("of all tax deeded property") has been removed (as instructed by the voters), but leaving no limit on board authority (as desired by the board) by also again removing the 1994 limit that was intentionally returned to the article question at the Deliberative Session, thereby neutering it. The last sentence is now again merely an historical explanatory note, rather than reintegrated into the question as an ongoing restriction. And just like the original article, it still implies to the voter in the voting booth that the purpose of this question is to remove that limit.

Last point: Why would the Selectmen still recommend this if it doesn't actually do anything, if it doesn't give them what they want?

Are my grammar skills that lacking? Is this deliberate? Is this another lawsuit necessary for taxpayers to control their servants? Have you voted against Chairman Clow yet...?

This recalcitrant board will get the power that it wants from the taxpayers. Screw you meddlers...



Followup at the next Select Board meeting of 3/19/2018...

My response to the complaint that at the Deliberative Session, the Board gets too many 'proposed amendment' notes scrawled on a napkin should have simply been, "Was that the cause of confusion for this article?" No. No, it wasn't...



Assurances are great. I guess we'll just have to see if they survive elections -- and how many...

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Compulsory Restraints. Because You're Not Competent.

You don't even need to trouble yourself over whether it's a violation of your liberty, subject. They'll decide that for you, too. Indeed, they already have.

And they'll decide that driving on roads that you are compelled to pay for is nevertheless somehow a mere government-granted "privilege" -- despite the fact that even the Supreme Court has acknowledged that travel is a Constitutionally protected natural right, the mode of which is nowhere authorized to be constrained, any more than are the modes of, say, speech or self-defense. We've simply allowed government, relentlessly operating well above its pay grade, to decide otherwise. (Time to regain some control, mayhaps? Is there a better place to make that stand than the "Live Free or Die" state...?)

So just submit. No need to thank them, really; surrendering to them control over your choices is thanks enough. Ok, almost enough...

HB1259, "relative to passenger restraints", gets an airing out -- yet it still stinks in here -- before the NH House Transportation Committee, 2/6/2018. And how 'bout that? Your humble chronicler was called upon to deliver the "rebuttal". No time to get (more) nervous, at least...

We've been here before, of course. But mercifully not since 2009's HB383 (this really is an awesome tool). But sadly yet entirely predictably, "the usual tired parade of government authoritarians and Utopian socialists" hasn't gotten any less tired over the intervening 9 years.

Had enough? Let your representatives know. See if they actually understand that they are...

Press



Thursday, January 18, 2018

"Family Leave Bill is Tax on Income"

That's the assessment of the Coalition of NH Taxpayers. But let's start here, though, 'cuz since financials bore me to tears, I rarely have a natural opportunity to focus on this shit.

Theft (noun): taking without the owner's consent.

Is that, by itself, a fair, unbiased, unprovocative, nonpartisan definition? I believe it is. It doesn't matter a lick what the thief intends to do with his newly acquired property. If the owner didn't consent, then it's theft. And in my definition of a free society, theft is unlawful. Rude. Frowned upon, even. Property rights are respected and upheld, regardless of the identity of the thief. Yes, even regardless of whether or not the thief has been "democratically elected." That is, in fact, what we believe is, self-evidently, the purpose for instituting a government.

Taxation is theft perpetrated by government, as your representative, in your name. And just as capos worked for, and were accountable to, Al Capone, your respective government representatives work for you. You are the "top capo" in this legal mafia. And thus you are responsible for the crime -- like theft -- that they commit which you condone (if, of course, you do so) simply because you happen to like what they propose to do with the stolen property -- your neighbors' property, that they quite possibly don't consent to surrender (which is why the IRS has so many guns). Either you (perhaps grudgingly) recognize this basic truism, or cognitive dissonance is about to make your head explode.

HB628, heard here before the NH House Commerce and Consumer Affairs Committee, 1/16/2018, would set up yet another force-funded government entitlement that's nevertheless already available in the competitive (to the extent government "allows" it to be, of course) private sector.



(I want to note somewhere here, and this seems as good a place as any, that the Chair initially admonished the assembled, as is typical in such circumstances, that this Committee, the bill's 2nd, will be considering only the economic aspects of this proposed legislation, and so to kindly restrict testimony, in what already promised to be a very long day regardless, to that element. Did pretty well through all the government actors testifying in the first half, too. But after the lunch break, he failed to reiterate [not that it would have made much practical difference, no doubt], and the "public" testimony -- hey, the People don't have busy days like government employees...! -- tended to go rather far afield -- in the predictable direction, needless to say. Indeed, by the end, well over 4 clock hours in, physical props were even tolerated -- in this case, pictures. Photographs. On photo paper. For the committee to pass around. 'Of the children!', of course...)

For the moment, at least, a convoluted so-called "opt-out" provision is beneficently included, but privacy professional Rep Jess Edwards, starting at about 1:14:00, asserts that the Federal Trade Commission would characterize it as "unethical" and "an unfair and deceptive trade practice" -- were government to be actually held accountable to the rules it imperiously imposes on its employers, of course (hey, how terribly convenient that government doesn't hold itself to, well, even the standard standards, eh...?).

Except, even with the uniquely arduous, and shady (and precariously tenuous, to be sure) opt-out provision, the scheme won't generate enough theft to cover this bill's centrally-planned "utopia" -- per government's own testimony. Here's the "money shot," immediately following Rep Edwards, from Richard Lavers, Deputy Commissioner of the NH Department of Employment Security, responding to a question near the end of his testimony, at about 1:30:00.
"The work that Employment Security has done, in a mathematical analysis of various levels of participation, is that at an 8-week average duration, at a half-percent premium contribution, the only way this program is solvent is at 100% participation. At 90% participation, it's no longer solvent."
Dire words, indeed, from someone who does dearly love a good wealth-transferring government entitlement -- at least when the coerced books balance, anyway, so at least there's that...  He does figure that if the premium contribution were increased by fiat to .67%, and the duration decreased to just 6 weeks, it just might fly.

So. Oopsie-you-weren't-supposed-to-notice, but a proposed government program that's written to be insolvent, to fail ('course, we all know that won't happen: as Reagan said, "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!"). And even the skeptical DC Lavel, as we later hear, wants it to be "successful", "to be around for a long time". But it won't be with voluntary contributions. Whatever shall we do...?

Where, then, will the money come from to make it solvent? Charging ridiculous sums -- sums necessary to sustain inevitably inefficient non-competitive government bureaucracies, sums that the innovative competitive private sector seems able to avoid without (ok, much, comparatively) subsidies -- surely won't fly with government's happily captured market -- the market that's been testifying all day that they'd like more free and subsidized stuff. Because they'd neglected to buy insurance for themselves (well, government takes care of those things, doesn't it...?).

That leaves, seems to me, 1) removing the (already intentionally onerous) "opt-out" provision altogether to ensure the elusive-yet-necessary 100% mandatory market "satisfaction", or 2) implementing a broad-based income tax to shore the whole collectivist mess up (and gosh, then what other new programs could we fund by raising the rate just a little bit more...?). Aw hell. Why not both...?!

As always, however, as Meldrim Thompson explained, "Low taxes are the result of low spending," not t'other way 'round. Especially as government crowds the private sector out of the market even further, costs will go up. Because there's simply no (market) pressure not to. And seriously, when was the last time a politician lost his job for spending too much of other people's money?

But more fundamentally, if this scheme -- even as presumably eventually modified -- is self-sustaining, if this is a profitable model, why does government need to be involved at all? If you want FMLI, go voluntarily contract directly with a competitive private-sector provider. It's available now. One doctor testifying in great support of this bill curiously told the committee how he's set up a private-sector foundation to voluntarily help people get this insurance! Problem solved.

So why don't all these people who've suffered such hardships because they didn't have insurance, instead of trecking to the legislature to beg for contract intervention, just go get insurance? What's the advantage of injecting unnecessary and expensive government / employer middlemen if the customer will be paying for it either way (right?), other than being able to legally steal subsidies from their neighbors' dinner tables?

And here's a shocker: businesses love to get their operating costs subsidized by taxpayers, too. Corporate welfare. Just ask the private-sector airline industry, with their public-sector "security" costs -- subsidized by you, whether you choose to fly, whether you choose to suffer their "security theater" at all, or not. Your protestations are irrelevant. As Al Haig put it, "Let them march all they want, as long as they continue to pay their taxes." It applies to the Warfare State, too, in case you haven't noticed. Does that seem right to you...?

Further, if offering such insurance as an employment benefit is, in fact, a competitive advantage for the business (as also noted by supporters, curiously), they will happily offer it sans government coercion, because it's in their economic self-interest. Because it attracts the best employees, thus increasing the business' productivity. Because it's profitable. Again, problem solved.

So why are they lobbying government to provide -- hell, to mandate -- their competitors with equivalent bennies? Why are they advocating to undermine their own perceived competitive advantage in a cutthroat market for labor? Seems counterintuitive -- even foolish -- doesn't it? Could it be that they just want a subsidy? And the public perception of being charitable with other people's money, of course -- but ya simply don't get moral credit for that.

But if they nevertheless don't believe it makes economic sense, what can we surmise about no-skin-in-the-game ('cuz it's not its money, it's yoursgovernment's rosy "utopian" economic predictions?

Indeed, if it's inherently not profitable, what can we anticipate regarding where the funds will eventually have to come from for this force-based government entitlement that, once implemented, will... never... go... away?

If you're "allowed" (nevermind an actual competitive free market) even just a nominal "choice" -- that the FTC, according to someone who should know, would likely call "an unfair and deceptive trade practice," remember -- this bill as written will not work. According to a state economist. Even if you simply don't like competitive free markets and voluntary contracts. Won't work.

You can do better on your own. Right now. And you can control it. You should do that.

But then, in a free society, one that respects the rule of law -- hell, even in this one -- insurance contracts aren't supposed to be a government function in the first place. You have an unalienable right -- and a concomitant responsibility, notably -- to control your own contracts (including, potentially, a voluntary contract -- get this -- to manage your contracts). And to control your own property. Even if your addle-pated neighbor "neglected" to anticipate certain contingencies, you are under no lawful obligation whatsoever to bail them out. 'Course, you can always still choose to help them voluntarily. Used to be that way back in the day, in point of fact...

What if servant government simply gave up the repeatedly empirically failed notion that it perfectly and uniquely groks economics, the incomprehensible economy -- for everyone -- and knows better than you how to run your life -- at your neighbors' expense?

What if servant government was compelled to simply acknowledge and humbly accepted that it was never expressly delegated the lawful authority in the first place...?

Press
And here's the key line: "HB 628 would effectively create an income tax, which I obviously can't support."
The governor cited the inability of the departments of Employment Security and Insurance to certify that the program as proposed will be solvent, and called for independent research to determine the number of employees who would voluntary choose coverage, and the frequency with which they would make claims.
"Only then would we have any ability to determine the true cost of such a program," he wrote. "To advance the cause of an optional paid family- and medical-leave program, the state must independently hire outside experts to design and develop a program that is guaranteed to be solvent."
But ya know what? They already exist. They're called "insurance companies". And they're already hired by individuals (or even businesses) who voluntarily choose (to offer the employee benefit of) coverage. "Problem" solved, no government involvement necessary. Nor advisable. Nor prudent...

I have to ask, "Regan Burke, of Salem," if you're begging the Senate to make you buy insurance, why don't you just go buy insurance...?



Wednesday, January 10, 2018

NH "Preemption" Accountability Bill Divides 2A Community

"Preemption" -- the notion that the 2nd Amendment and NH's own Article 2-a actually mean what they say, and that, NH not being, for good or ill, what's called a "home rule" state, local communities (and other subdivisions) can only do what Concord has authorized them to do -- was nevertheless officially codified back in 2003 as RSA 159:26.

Sadly, the rule of that law has subsequently chafed certain recalcitrant local officials, who have continued, on occasion, to unilaterally overrule it (such as some police chiefs who feel entitled to modify the one-and-only-authorized/accept-no-substitutes Dept of Safety Pistol/Revolver License application by requiring additional information). HB1749, "relative to the state's authority to prohibit or regulate firearms and relative to the selectmen's authority to manage town property," heard here, 1/10/2018, before the NH House Municipal and County Government Committee, not to put too fine a point on it, is an effort to say, "no, we really meant it, and you will be held accountable." Well, ok then...

Curiously, while we are presented with always-expected objections from self-interested government(-affiliated) actors -- advocacy groups the NH Municipal Association (their testimony, essentially, including the exclamation points, can be found here) and the NH Chiefs of Police Association (hey, now there's a surprise...), and from representatives of a couple of town select boards -- and the always amusing (and usually bemusing) Rep Tim Horrigan, no one actually from the private-sector hoplophobe community even showed up.

Pure bizarre internecine struggle, otherwise, with state gun activists staking out opposing positions. However, there does appear to be some building consensus surrounding a proffered amendment initially presented to the Committee in testimony by Gun Owners of NH, starting at about the 1:04:00 mark. At this juncture, however, it must be officially introduced by a Committee member during their Executive Session (which didn't happen this day) to be considered. So if you have a Representative sitting on the Municipal and County Government Committee, you might want to put a bug in their ear about making sure it's allowed to at least see the light of day and be discussed.

James Gaffney at about 1:36:30 pretty much nails the objective, regardless of the execution: shouldn't government officials be held accountable when they -- perhaps even intentionally -- break the law? Aren't you? Even when maybe it's not intentional? Shouldn't there be some substantive incentive not to break the law? Or does election -- or mere appointment -- make men angels...?

But yeah, it's a concept that really should be applied to government violations of all rights, not just gun rights. I do feel compelled to note here that there are 10 co-/sponsors on this bill, and their average NH Liberty Alliance legislative grade is an A+...

Press




Tuesday, November 28, 2017

The One Where the Commission Announces Its Findings Before the Hearing

For the predetermined deliberations of this lopsided simpatico NH Commission to Study the Legalization, Regulation, and Taxation of Marijuana (and here's the Senate hearing on the House bill to establish it) is what the NH House Criminal Justice Committee insists it must wait. But rest assured, citizen, your unauthorized overlords are unbiased. Uh-huh. They "represent" you, too...

Can this really be surprising, though, when the hand-picked membership is overwhelmingly comprised of unrepentant on-the-record -- even vestedly self-interested -- drug warriors? Oh, the prohibitionist/authoritarian echo chamber. Thank you, late-commission-addition attorney Paul "How the hell did he get in here?!?" Twomey, for injecting a shudder of jarring objectivity and honesty into the juggernaut.

The titular revelation barely 4 minutes into this "impartial" commission's only second non-"organizational" meeting, 11/27/2017 -- the announcement that the Chair is already intending to speak in House session against this year's "marijuana legalization" bill, HB656 (the Criminal Justice Committee's equally tediously predictable Executive Session for which can be seen here), and his request for the commission's consent for him to speak on behalf of the whole group at that time -- and then Mr. Twomey's desperately needed subsequent objection to said presumptuous, disingenuous, "really, who needs a horse anyway when we got this here dandy pre-ordained cart?" Committee Chair's request round out the first 6 minutes.

If you'd just prefer to skip over all the essentially "the feds might get mad!" and "we have to protect voluntary commercial partners from themselves!" -- and, of course, the ever-popular catch-all, "REGULATE ALL THE THINGS!" -- bullshit that comes next, Marijuana Policy Project's New England Political Director Matt Simon -- who isn't on this commission, bringing some deficient balance, right next to the devoutly prohibitionist private-sector advocacy group New Futures, because...? -- starts at about 59:00, providing some rational facts regarding the recent history and current regional state of "The War on People Who Use (Some) Drugs"™.

(Some unfortunate audio difficulties in the middle as my mic battery slowly expired without notice, somewhat ameliorated in post, but it clears up with a mic swap just after 1:24:00.)