Egbert v. Boule


by Trevor Miles

Customs and Border Patrol (CBP)

Those three letters should make any libertarian tremble with the fear of Constitutional rights being violated. They certainly make me tremble, despite the fact that I live in North Carolina, nowhere even close to the southern or northern borders.

Why am I writing this?

Well, I live within 100 miles of the US border, and in June of 2022, the Supreme Court provided a nearly impenetrable shield to federal immigration authorities operating within the 100 mile border zone when it comes to the 4th Amendment. In the case Egbert v. Boule, the court chose, in a majority 6-3 decision, to set the precedent that only Congress can authorize lawsuits against federal agents for violation of 4th Amendment rights resulting from immigration operations. This essentially means that no one can sue federal immigration authorities for violating their 4th Amendment rights, despite the fact that Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents (1971) provided for this exact remedy in a similar violation of the 4th Amendment by federal narcotics agents.

So, what is Egbert v. Boule?

In Egbert v. Boule, the plaintiff Mr. Boule owned and operated the “Smugglers Inn”, near the Canada-U.S. Border. Mr. Boule routinely worked as a confidential informant for the Border Patrol, and notified them when persons of interest were staying at the inn. On the day in question in 2014, Mr. Boule informed Agent Egbert that a Turkish individual would be staying at the Inn, and had arranged transportation. When Mr. Boule returned with the individual, Agent Egbert followed them onto the property, at which point Mr. Boule told Egbert to leave. Egbert then proceeded to allegedly throw Boule to the ground, and after determining the visitor's paperwork was in order, left. Boule then filed an administrative claim against Egbert, after which Egbert reported Boule to the IRS.

The district court ruled in favor of Egbert, and the decision was reversed by a panel of Ninth Circuit Appeals judges. After making its way through the court system, it was granted certiorari on November 5, 2021, with the Supreme Court later agreeing with the district court's decision, ruling in favor of Egbert and removing any avenue for Boule to receive compensation for the 4th Amendment violation.

What does all that mean?

Well it means that citizens lack any recourse to address violations of their 4th Amendment rights in the border zone, as we all know that Congress would never authorize a lawsuit against their agents of the state, regardless of how egregious the violation might be. By the way, nearly 2/3rds of Americans live within this border zone. It also means that federal immigration authorities have one less thing to fear when it comes to violating the 4th amendment, and essentially now have carte blanche to engage in the full scale victimization of all Americans within the border zone, including and especially those within racialized and marginalized communities.

What is the solution?

The solution to the issue is deceptively simple. Repeal the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1952, and replace it with a simple security check at ports of entry. In doing so, it removes the legal basis for the 100 mile border zone, and the subsequent violations of the US Constitution that have been upheld by the Supreme Court, which will allow for agents to be held liable for violating individuals rights.

I urge all Libertarians, and indeed all Americans who care about their rights, to push this issue at all levels of government and society, and make your voices so loud that you can’t be ignored.

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The State on Your Plate: How Government Sabotages Small Farms and Censors Food


by Deborah Reese, Co-owner, Fox Knob Farm

I am a hog farmer. If you had known me before 2017, you would say, “No way, impossible, never in a million years.” It’s a story many people could tell, as I am by far not the first person to give up a career and comfortable life in the city to move to the country in hopes of realizing a farming dream. Most of us new farmers and homesteaders have an origin story that includes a health crisis of some sort and the dawning realization that our food (among other things) has been poisoning us our whole lives, making us sick and fat. It’s only after we try like heck to source good quality local food—a daunting task—that we realize the whole system is broken. The state is our enemy, sabotaging our ability to produce, purchase, and consume clean, quality food at nearly every turn.

One stunning example: As in many states, in North Carolina it is illegal to milk your cow and sell that fresh raw milk to your neighbor (or anyone). If you want to purchase raw milk, you first have to find a farm producing it (good luck!), then ask to buy their “pet milk” (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) which must exclaim on the packaging “NOT FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION” in letters at least one-half inch in height and “IT IS NOT LEGAL TO SELL RAW MILK FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION IN NORTH CAROLINA.” Alternatively, you can join a formal herd share program, in which you technically own part of the cow, or, as many do, drive across state lines to South Carolina where you can buy raw milk in a retail store. Meanwhile, in Europe, raw milk vending machines are readily available. Don’t get me wrong, the state’s involvement in agriculture in Europe is devastating also, perhaps even worse than in the U.S., so this example merely shows the seemingly haphazard way various governments toy with our food choices. You don’t have to agree with me about raw milk being fantastic for your health, but I’m sure we can agree that each of us should be able to choose what we put in our own bodies.

If, like me, you’ve discovered the miracle of the carnivore diet, getting quality meat—and lots of it—will be your top concern. The USDA in combination with each state regulates how livestock must be slaughtered and processed in order to be sold to consumers. The processing facilities that meet the requirements are very few, because it is prohibitively expensive and time-consuming to create and maintain a certified facility. The state of North Carolina offers a slightly less expensive and time-consuming alternative, but if you choose it, you can only sell your meat inside the state, and even these facilities have a serious backlog. The result is a bottleneck in meat processing that has small producers waiting months, a year, or more, and driving for hours to get their animals processed. The rising cost of feeding an animal even one day past their readiness can absolutely destroy a small farm.

If you’ve gone down the food quality rabbit hole at all, you quickly learned just how terrible most of the meat available to purchase at the grocery store and most restaurants is. The animals are raised in horrible conditions, packed into a small space with no sunlight, standing on top of their own urine and feces all day, getting drugged and vaccinated to combat diseases caused by the conditions they’re in, and eating poor quality feed. These facilities are called CAFOs, Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations. These are the animals tying up the USDA processing facilities, getting the federal and state governments’ stamped seal of approval, and driving down the price of pork. North Carolina is the third largest producer of pork in the nation, made possible by a legislature that has a long history of supporting industrial pork production, primarily by allowing them to store and dispose of their waste through questionable methods. Three lawsuits resulted in juries awarding over $500 million to neighbors of hog facilities , in 2018, but have made little difference.

Meanwhile, the small producers who raise their animals on pastures where they can forage, get sunlight, and naturally spread their manure across a large swath of land (which is exactly what’s required to improve our soil quality and therefore environment, a technique known as regenerative agriculture) are struggling to get their meat to market. It’s worse than that—they are struggling to stay afloat, usually working another job or two so they can afford to keep feeding their animals while they wait for their processing dates, each day watching whatever small profit they hoped for drain away.

To combat this problem, some producers are taking advantage of a legal loophole put in place for deer hunters and people who raise animals only for their own consumption: custom exempt processing. If you shoot a deer, you can bring the carcass to a custom processing facility (still subject to inspection, but a lot less) and they will cut it up for you and package it, to be consumed only by you, your family, and your non-paying guests. Each package will be stamped with the words “NOT FOR SALE.” The same can apply for a hog or beef you raise, or a hog that you purchase “on the hoof” and have a farmer raise for you. Few consumers realize this option is available, and even fewer would know what to do with a whole hog or beef if they had it. (As hard as it is to believe, there is more to a hog than pork chops and bacon, and more to a cow than steaks and ground beef.) This is the route we have been taking, which has been somewhat working, until we got some bad news.

Transporting a pig for slaughter is not only extremely difficult and stressful, it can impact the meat quality. It is far better for the animal and everyone involved to do the slaughter on the farm. One amazing young man does this job in our area: he drives his truck equipped with a crane to our farm, quickly and humanely kills the animal while it is happily grazing, then does the skinning and evisceration before wrapping the carcass and transporting it to our processor. His skill is truly something to behold. It all works wonderfully, so of course the state had to step in. We found out last week that the North Carolina Department of Agriculture is trying to force this young man to shut down his on-site slaughter service unless he can conform to the USDA’s Mobile Slaughter Unit Compliance Guide, which after you read it you know is an utterly impossible task (unless you have about a quarter million extra dollars lying around, and only clients who are willing to invest an additional amount to prepare for the unit’s arrival on the farm).

Let this sink in for a moment: we are raising our own hog for our own consumption, and we cannot legally slaughter it and have it processed by the people we choose in the way we feel is the most humane. We sure as heck couldn’t dream of doing that and then selling the meat to you.

Switching gears for a moment, have you heard yet about just how toxic industrial seed oils are? We were conned into believing something that began as an industrial waste product was “heart healthy” and better than traditionally used fats like butter and lard. Fortunately, most people are aware of the truth now, and want to go back to cooking the way we used to, with healthy animal fats. Butter is fantastic, but burns at higher temperatures. Lard and tallow are better options for higher heat cooking, but where can you buy them? (Beware the lard at the grocery store, since it usually includes the same hydrogenated oil that makes Crisco so toxic.) Lard is made by slowly cooking finely chopped pork fat until the liquid lard is “rendered.” I have vast personal experience with this, and use my lard in just about all my cooking (including the best chocolate chip cookies you’ve ever tasted), and in my homemade body and face creams. What if you wanted to buy some lard from me? Well, you can’t.

Value-added products used to be a staple of farmers’ incomes. They would take the fresh produce and meats produced with care on their farm and make them into delicious homemade items and sell them. Jams and jellies, canned goods, pies, stews… all the things I would love to be able to buy from my neighboring farms to make eating healthy local food a little easier. But selling value-added products like these requires having a licensed commercial kitchen, an expense and bureaucratic nightmare that most of us can’t afford. You can go to the grocery store any day of the week and buy products loaded with poor quality ingredients; high fructose corn syrup, chemical sweeteners, preservatives, toxic dyes, MSG, GMO/glyphosate-sprayed grains, and a host of other bad things. But because I process pork fat into lard in my unlicensed kitchen, it would be illegal for me to sell it to you, regardless of whether you know me, have personally inspected my kitchen, deemed it clean and safe, and signed a liability waiver. You don’t have a free market choice of food available because we the producers must risk fines and even imprisonment if we sell you something the state has disallowed.

But the problems are much worse than your choices being limited and my ability to sell meat. We’re all familiar with “the invisible foot of government” as Milton Friedman put it, but most people do not realize the extent of the damage done by the state’s involvement in our agricultural systems. Rather than lecture you about how bad for health high fructose corn syrup is (I’m sure you already know that), I’ll use it as an example to explain how American farm subsidies and price supports destroyed agriculture, the ability of small farms to compete, our soil quality, and our health.

As Saifedean Ammous writes in The Fiat Standard: “By subsidizing the production of the cheapest foods and recommending them to Americans as the optimal components of their diet, the extent of price increases and currency debasement is less obvious.” In other words, as a tactic to mask inflation, the federal government has been pushing farmers to grow cheaper nutritionally-poor crops, and then convince the American public to eat them using false messages of health benefits while steering them away from more expensive and nutritionally dense foods like meat.

In the 1970s, Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz told farmers to “get big or get out.” Billions of dollars of subsidies flowed almost exclusively to large farms that conformed, and the monocropping of corn, wheat, and soy began in earnest, requiring chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and genetically modified high-yield seeds. This type of industrial agriculture results in soils that are depleted of their nutrients and biodiversity, whose toxins are washed into ground waters and streams, and the vapid harvests produced are largely processed into products like high fructose corn syrup used in almost all sodas and processed food. Junk food and beverage companies are happy to use HFCS since it’s cheaper than sugar due to the federal subsidies, the overproduction of corn inspired by those subsidies, and the high quotas on sugar imports. Most wheat and soy crops share a similar fate, being processed into health-destroying products that can barely be called “food.” Obesity, heart problems, cancers, diabetes, and other chronic diseases now plague nearly half of Americans.

What’s the solution? Eliminate the state from your plate, of course. Make Harry Browne proud and live as if you were free. Bypass the government and big retail middlemen and go straight to the source. If you choose not to farm yourself, find farms close to you that meet your standards and buy from them. And I mean your standards, not the standards set by the state for what may qualify as “organic.” Many foods labeled “organic” have been greenwashed and are little to no better than the usual grocery store fare. A farm may not want the red tape, expense, strings, and moral quandaries that often come with official certifications, but that doesn’t mean they’re not raising high-quality food.

I won’t lie to you, it can be difficult, highly inconvenient, and time-consuming to get your hands on quality local food from multiple farms week-in and week-out, spend the time to prepare it, and make the necessary changes in your diet and expectations. You may not be motivated until you have a health crisis of your own, but that day is (sadly) inevitable. Start at your local farmer’s markets, and buy everything they can legally sell you first. Judge the quality of the food you’re eating by taste and how well you feel after eating it; nutrient-dense food reveals itself quickly. Sometimes looks can help, but sometimes they can hinder. While grocery store pork is usually almost white, our pork is so red you can easily mistake it for beef, an indication our pigs have been raised on pasture with room to roam, as exercised muscles have a higher myoglobin concentration. Fruits and vegetables grown naturally may have odd shapes, sizes, colors, or blemishes, but that just tells you it’s not from a large producer who throws away anything less than ideal looking, and covered in wax or Apeel to mask the fact that it was harvested before its time and has traveled for days or weeks to get to the store.

Establish yourself as a trusted regular customer, eventually asking to tour their farm and if you like what you see, place a large order. Be prepared to pay the true cost of the food, not the state subsidized cost that you see in the grocery store, and pay in cash (or alternative currencies, if your farmer is able). Perhaps even pay in advance to help front the farmer the cost of the production (CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture, often a subscription service that may include delivery) and herd shares are designed for that purpose). Don’t be one of the many customers that only want to buy bacon; the farmer has a whole animal that needs to get sold if they are to stay in business. Consider it a culinary learning opportunity. Perhaps one day you can convince your local farmers that you won’t rat them out for selling you unsanctioned goods, and you can start buying what you really want to buy from them. If they have enough customers like you, they can stay in business and produce more, but they may need some encouragement. With friends you trust, consider buying a whole animal together on the hoof, and with some money up front, the farmer can raise it for you. Eventually you, your neighbors, and your nearby farmers will be part of a community and food ecosystem that needs no outside subsidies-with-strings and tolerates no outside interference. That may not be the complete freedom we’re all longing for, but it’s a darn good start.

Additional resources to explore:

  • How to find your local farms: and, among others. Or, find them in person at your local farmer’s market.
  • Books by Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm: Folks This Ain’t Normal and Everything I Want To Do Is Illegal: War Stories from the Local Food Front
  • General healthy food resources and raw milk finder: The Weston A. Price Foundation,
  • Book by Saifedean Ammous: The Fiat Standard: The Debt Slavery Alternative to Human Civilization, especially the chapter on fiat food
  • Book by David R. Montgomery: Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations
  • 2009 documentary by Tracy-Louise Ward featuring Robert F. Kennedy Jr.: Pig Business
  • A must-watch cartoon originally made in 2005 by The Sierra Club, and now mysteriously removed from their main website (well, not so mysterious after you watch it): The True Cost of Food


  1. Raw Milk Legal States [Updated March 2023] by World Population Review
  2. NC Statute § 106-266.35
  3. A Campaign for Real Milk, A Project of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Raw Milk Finder
  4. Raw Milk Vending Machines Take Over Europe by Sam Brasch, Modern Farmer, March 25, 2014
  5. A Big Look At Big Hog In North Carolina by Amanda Magnus, Frank Stasion, WUNC, May 29, 2018
  6. An Update on North Carolina Nuisance Lawsuits by Kitt Tovar, August 31, 2018, Iowa State University
  7. USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture
  8. The Oiling of America by Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, PhD, Weston A. Price Foundation, January 17, 2019
  9. How Industrial Seed Oils Are Making Us Sick by Chris Kresser, M.S., February 19, 2019
  10. How Agriculture Bureaucrats Are Manipulating Food Prices—and Our Diets by Sammy Cartagena, Mises Institute, March 21, 2022
  11. The Secret History of Why Soda Companies Switched From Sugar to High-Fructose Corn Syrup by Tom Philpott, Mother Jones, July 26, 2019
  12. Red or White: What Kind of Meat Is Pork? By Ariane Lang, Msc, MBA, Healthline, June 5, 2020
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Reflections on a Year (OpEd)

by Rob Yates
LPNC Communications Director

This month marks one year that I have had the honor of serving as your communications director. It has been quite a ride since speaking on behalf of Joshua at the Gastonia council meeting a year ago (unexpectedly, actually) which opened up a discussion about potentially taking on this role, and the rest, as they say, is history. To recognize one year of you all having to put up with me, I thought I might reflect on some of my observations and hopefully spark some new conversations. 

This is the first of two parts.

An overall look at the last year

My entire background - education and professional - comprises some combination of writing, communication, and marketing. It's why this role has felt very natural to me at times, leading to what I consider, on balance, a reasonably successful first year. The newsletter has re-launched, and it is improving, we have the podcast going again, and we've had a number of successful targeted outreach campaigns, to give a few examples. 

Despite any experience I have in communications, marketing, psychology, and writing, applied in what I thought was a wide array of forums, politics is a different world. I have also felt completely out of place, unsteady, and unsure more often than not. It's a weird social experiment, where we've created this team sport where winning, at any cost, is all that matters, and we ascribe life or death value to victory for no reason except we’re told to do so. We have so much left to accomplish, and I don’t feel like I have even really gotten started.

In business, the arts, and, in fact, in most places in the real world, communication is generally taken in good faith, and the intent is to convey meaning, which others earnestly try to grasp, process, and use to generate a response, sometimes beautifully. The greatest writers, lyricists, teachers, and salespeople alike are masters of this art form, which is how they become the greatest in all disciplines where the capacity to convey your meaning in a way that is recognized and adopted by the listener is paramount. 

Politics is exactly the opposite. Not that everyone takes everything you say in bad faith, ascribing the worst possible interpretation through a warped viewpoint. But a lot do. And it's always a possibility. Toxic environments like that are soul crushing, which is why most successful politicians are vapid caricatures of real people. 

But the politics are seeping out into the real world and poisoning everyday discourse so quickly, even Edward Bernays would advise caution. Your politics must be worn loudly as a symbol to the rest of the world announcing your morality, and battle lines are drawn. People face potential scrutiny, shaming, ostracization, vitriol, and other powerful society backlash, not l just for saying or doing something, but for not doing the opposite loudly enough. 

Human beings have evolved to have a strong need for companionship. We have an innate fear of being alone or banished, confirmed by study after study after study after study. Virtue signaling is the political version of flashing a gang sign; you are publicly reaffirming your commitment to that team so they don't kick you off. 

This isn't a silly example of weak-willed people. I don't think we, as a society, consider just how damaging anxiety disorders are to us as a population. The sheer number of people who live in a constant state of fight-or-flight has led to a pattern of behavior where each "team" desperately repeats behaviors which they believe will hurt the other team and help them. 

But politics is a zero-sum game. If winning is the only thing that matters, then anything is justified, as long as you get away with it. Politicians naturally take advantage of the fight-or-flight response-driven permanent anxiety and focus it against the "other" side. It's why our rights are blatantly ignored as corporate interests buy elected officials so routinely that we even have laws protecting their ability to do so. 

The answer, if we could wave the proverbial magic wand, is to get money out of politics. Of course, politicians aren’t keen to relinquish that gravy train. I am convinced that the only way to get money out of politics is to take back so much power that politicians don't matter anymore. To get to that point? We have a lot of work to do. 

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What Happens After Control Ends in North Carolina

by Joshua D. Glawson
LPNC Strategic Communications Adviser

I recently heard a friendly discussion about a really fun topic: economics in North Carolina. In their palaver, they came to a slight disagreement about one particular issue and how it should be handled.

Let’s imagine that the topic is "Y."


The entire Y market in North Carolina is controlled. The three-letter government agency XYZ controls it from every angle. XYZ controls how Y is made, who can make Y, fees for entering the Y market, how much Y is produced, where Y is from, how much Y costs, how much Y is taxed, and how much Y can be sold. XYZ centrally vaults all of the Y in North Carolina in XYZ’s warehouse, and only their approved distributors can transport Y to their storefront monopoly locations. XYZ goes as far as to propagandize why they must maintain total control of Y in North Carolina.

Now, let’s imagine what will likely happen when the total control of Y by XYZ in North Carolina dissipates.

Person 1: Consumption Junction, What’s Your Function

We cannot say how many jobs will or will not be created once the control of the Y market dissipates in North Carolina. It is quite often the case that governments have too many people working, with less efficiency than private markets. Governments do not have to operate efficiently as a business does, as their money is gained predominantly through taxes.

For example, a task that a private business may only need three people to accomplish, a government agency will inefficiently have five, or more, people. With greater efficiency and the assistance of labor and technology, a business is incentivized to save time and money, whereas a government's financial incentives and overall effectiveness do not concern them since they operate as though there is an endless pool of money to be exploited.

When complete control of Y no longer exists, there may be fewer jobs and a reduction in wasted costs. Undoubtedly there will be a greater variety of Y and functional market efficiency in North Carolina.

Person 2: Y is Seen, and Y is Unseen

We cannot say, with certainty, how many jobs will or will not be created once the control of the Y market dissipates, but it is more likely that more jobs will be created overall than lost. XYZ controls every aspect of the Y market in North Carolina. XYZ controls production, manufacturing, warehousing, distribution, representation, sales, and profits of Y while there is still market demand. Due to a plethora of multitiered inefficiencies and a severe limitation on functionally efficient markets, XYZ has willfully reduced the opportunities for the free and peaceful markets of North Carolina.

The Y market is controlled and gravely restricted in North Carolina. Once these restrictions are removed, it is more likely that the market will become more efficient, increase prosperity, have greater variety, reduce operational costs, and increase sales opportunities. Since there is still demand for Y in the market, ending XYZ will encourage investment in the Y market, as well as Y’s direct and indirect markets. There is a sort of butterfly effect across the marketplace, and the aggregate benefits and positive effects of this fluttering are immeasurable.

When complete control of Y no longer exists, there may be more jobs and a reduction in wasted costs. Undoubtedly there will be a greater variety of Y and market efficiency in North Carolina. The benefits are likely to create more jobs and business opportunities in direct and indirect markets.

Final Causation

Whether a person believes fewer jobs or more jobs will be created once the control of the Y market dissipates, we can agree that greater variety and improved market functional efficiency will be the result. With greater efficiency comes greater savings of money, or taxes in the case of XYZ.

The free and peaceful people of North Carolina ought to actively end the government agency XYZ’s complete control over the production, manufacturing, warehousing, distribution, representation, sales, and profits of Y. North Carolina’s growth potential depends on ending these severe restrictions. Ending the XYZ allows people to choose while they also benefit from what is seen and what is unseen.

Joshua D. Glawson is a writer and speaker in the Liberty Movement. He has been active with the Libertarian Party of California since 2015. He now resides in his home state of North Carolina. Check him out at Home - Joshua D. Glawson (

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Mises Club Carolinas Event Speech

This is a condensed version of the speech given by Jared Wall at the most recent Mises Club Carolinas event in South Carolina.

In the book Green Tyranny—a fantastic history of the environmental alarmism movement—author Rupert Darwall lays responsibility for the beginning of this movement at the feet of the Germans and the Swedes.

In 1967, a Swedish scientist published the first ever "theory" on acid rain. Four years later, Bert Bolin, a Swede who would go on to chair the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), wrote the first-ever government report on acid rain. It was a typical government report. Ninety pages long, it starts out with certainty: "The emission of sulfur into the atmosphere . . . has proved to be a major environmental problem." Fifty pages later, however, Bolin does admit to some doubt when he says, "It is very difficult to prove that damage . . . has in fact occurred." Nevertheless, the government report concludes decisively, "A reduction in the total emissions both in Sweden and in adjacent countries is required" (emphasis added).

It was in Germany where environmentalists and antinuclear activists entered into holy matrimony. Scaling back on nuclear power, making life difficult for owners of fossil fuel power plants, and subsidizing unreliable and inefficient solar and wind farms has been Germany’s consistent policy in the decades since. The result has been skyrocketing energy prices and an increasingly unreliable electrical grid. German engineers—having designed a bit of redundancy into their system—had historically never had problems with their electrical grid. However, by 2012, the country experienced one thousand brownouts. In 2013, that number was up to twenty-five hundred, and it has continued getting worse since. As a result, Germany’s industrial base, always a world leader, has been sadly declining as businesses choose to leave the country in search of more reliable electrical pastures.

In 1988, the IPCC was established during a meeting in Geneva, presided over by many of the same characters who’d been leading Sweden and Germany's environmentalist movements during the preceding decades.

One of the primary tasks assigned to the IPCC is to issue periodic "assessment reports" about the state of global climate change. These reports are hundreds of pages long and can be extremely technical. For attention-deficit-challenged politicians and journalists, these reports are issued with an accompanying summary. As a matter of routine, this summary mischaracterizes the substance and even the conclusions of the actual report. It is also regularly subjected to political meddling; for instance, when the IPCC issued its fifth assessment report in 2014, the German delegate to the IPCC insisted that language related to a pause or hiatus in the rise of global temperature be removed because "it would confuse German voters."

Moreover, the leaders of the environmentalist movement have historically been wrong on just about everything. For laughs:

  1. 1989—the UN predicted that entire nations would be "wiped off the face of the Earth" by rising sea levels by 2000.
  2. 2006—Al Gore said humans may have only ten years to save the planet from "turning into a total frying pan."
  3. 2018—Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez declared that the "world is going to end in twelve years if we don’t address climate change."

Despite all this stupidity, corruption, and failure, the emotional pull of "save the world" propaganda remains powerful, and the environmentalist agenda marches on.

One of the biggest goals of this agenda has been to get us off fossil-fuel-generated electricity and onto wind-generated and solar-generated electricity. Admittedly, environmentalists have been extremely successful at installing large numbers of wind turbines and solar panels. They've been stunningly unsuccessful, though, in the pursuit of their primary goal of "getting us off" fossil fuels. Despite massive growth in the generating capacity of wind and solar farms, fossil-fuel-powered electric plants remain an irreplaceable component of a reliable electrical grid. Wind and solar power, as technology currently stands, cannot adequately substitute for power from fossil fuels. This is because wind and solar power suffer from the insurmountable problem of intermittency—wind turbines don’t work when it’s not windy, and solar panels don’t work when the sun's not shining.

Some have suggested that we could build large-scale battery storage facilities that, on sunny or windy days, could be used to bank excess electricity for later use and thus overcome this problem. Elon Musk recently even floated the idea of building a large-scale battery storage facility powered by wind and solar farms. It was going to cost $5 billion, require more lithium batteries than currently exist in the world, and be capable of storing about five minutes of United States’ electricity demand. Large-scale battery storage is simply not viable.

Another fun fact about wind and solar power and battery storage is that storing electricity in batteries is ten thousand times more expensive than storing oil in tanks or coal in piles.

Wind and solar farms have clearly added nothing of value. But it’s worse than that—they actively work to our detriment. For an electrical grid to work reliably, the supply of electricity must be constantly equalized with demand. If power plants are generating more electricity than is demanded by consumers, the electrical grid can be overloaded, and critical infrastructure can be catastrophically damaged.

On the other hand, if supply is unable to keep up with demand, the result is blackouts and brownouts. To deal with this physical constraint, power plants have historically been designed to serve two complementary purposes: baseline-load generation and variable-load generation. Given that a certain amount of electrical demand can be taken as constant, baseline generators are designed to operate reliably and inexpensively to meet that demand. Spikes in demand are handled by variable generators.

Wind and solar power function as neither. As opposed to baseline-load or variable-load generators, wind and solar farms are random and unreliable generators of electricity.

It’s true that on sunny or windy days, they can produce MASSIVE amounts of electricity. The problem is that this drives up supply regardless of demand—so when demand is not sufficiently high to account for the power generation from wind and solar farms, variable-load and even baseline-load power plants must throttle down their power generation to protect grid infrastructure from overload.

For baseline-load plants especially, which weren't designed to operate that way, the negative effects on maintenance and equipment lifetimes are significant. In real time, we are seeing the reliable portion of our electrical grid wearing out faster than it otherwise would.

The state of Texas makes the point. Texas holds the title of being the number one wind state in the US. For years, they have been investing billions of dollars into the installation of thousands of windmills across the state. To connect these wind farms to the grid required thirty-six hundred miles of transmission lines. Just the cost of those transmission lines was greater than $6.5 billion. The reliable portion of Texas' electrical grid was starved for funds to pay for this political misallocation of resources.

As a result, routine maintenance has increasingly been ignored, and emergency maintenance has become more and more routine. When Texas was hit by a winter storm in the winter of 2021, it caused an unexpected increase in winter electric demand. Unfortunately, at the time, a number of critical power plants were down for emergency maintenance, the grid was unable to keep up, and hundreds tragically died.

As if all that weren't enough, there is also the corruption and crony capitalism aspect of wind and solar. During times when wind and solar farms are ramping up supply, the wholesale price of electricity naturally falls. This leads to the owners of coal and natural gas power plants making very little money or sometimes even losing money on windy and sunny days.

On the other hand, because politicians want to force wind and solar power to work regardless of market realities, wind and power farm owners earn a subsidized rate for the electricity they generate regardless of the wholesale rate. Owners of wind and solar farms are therefore insulated from the consequences that their arbitrary and politically incentivized production of electricity has on the market.

To make this point one final way, in places where solar and wind power are pervasive, both the quality of the electrical grid and the cost of electricity rank poorly against places where solar and wind are scarce. Germany has increased its wind and solar generating capacity by thirteen times from 1999–2012; they've also recently announced the shutdown of their last nuclear power plant, and their cost per kilowatt-hour has risen to nearly fifty cents.

In the Carolinas, we pay between six and ten cents per kilowatt-hour of electricity. Households and business owners would no doubt be hard hit if their power bills were to increase by five to eight times. Unfortunately, that seems to be the direction we’re going. In North Carolina, we pay 18 percent more for electricity than do our neighbors in South Carolina, simply because North Carolina politicians insist on increasing solar production, while South Carolina remains primarily reliant on fossil fuel and nuclear power.

Certainly, there are very real problems related to the current state of things. However, the problem is not that we’re facing fossil-fuel-induced climate change so bad that drastic action is necessary to "save the planet." Rather, the problem we’re facing is the reaction to this fake crisis, which is leading to the degradation of the electrical grid we depend upon for our modern lifestyles.

A promising path forward in finding a solution to this problem is found in Alex Epstein’s great book Fossil Future.

His book’s overall thesis is that our strategy should be to pursue a change in rhetoric. To do this, we should frame our arguments about this issue from the standpoint of what is best for human flourishing.

On that front, he lays out three facts:

  1. Fossil fuels are a uniquely cost-effective source of energy.
  2. Cost-effective energy is essential to human flourishing.
  3. Billions of people are suffering and dying for a lack of access to cost-effective energy.

Therefore, rather than insist on working to scale back our consumption of fossil fuels, we should actively seek to increase it—especially in the poorest parts of the world.

Beyond this brilliant thesis, Epstein's book is a fantastic scientific and historical refutation of all things environmentalist alarmism. Perhaps the best example of that is his demolition of Al Gore's infamous "hockey stick" curve. First, he demonstrates clearly that Gore’s graph, which shows Earth’s temperature as being constant for centuries only to spike up since the Industrial Revolution of the 1850s, is false. Second, he demonstrates that there is a hockey stick curve that is true and that people should be stupefied by—the graph of human flourishing over time.

For centuries, human flourishing had been flat in terms of life expectancy, standard of living, access to electricity, and caloric intake. Only since the 1850s, when humanity started burning fossil fuels, has all of this changed. Since then, we’ve seen human flourishing—by any measure one would choose—spike up in exactly this same "hockey stick" fashion.

In conclusion, market economics leads to business owners making informed and calculated investments in things like LED lighting technology for purposes of raising their bottom line as well. Market economics will also lead to the development of a robust and reliable electrical grid. Political economics, on the other hand, leads to corruption, cronyism, an electrical grid on the verge of failure, higher costs of energy, and a top-down "solution" to a fake crisis that is causing diminished human flourishing.

Just like everything else, in the case of energy efficiency as well as energy production, it is best to trust the market.


Jared Wall is currently employed as a Sales Engineer working for Southpoint Solutions based out of Fort Mill, SC. For more, follow visit for semi-regular anecdotes from his decade+ career in energy efficiency.

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Want Limited Government? Start with Terms (Guest OpEd)

by Patrick Newton, Forward Party NC Director of Candidate Recruitment and Development

The Tar Heel is excited to introduce guest author Patrick Newton this edition. Patrick is part of the leadership team at the recently formed Forward Party NC. We have been discussing with them, among other things, opportunities to help them collect petition signatures to get on the ballot, and the subject of term limits came up. Given that I have yet to meet a Libertarian who is against government limitations, and also understanding that term limits are a nuanced issue with a number of different potential impacts and implications, we asked Patrick to make his case for term limits here. As he states, he is not representative of the Forward Party in this position, nor is this meant to reflect a position of the LPNC either way. Instead, it is meant to spur further conversation and discussion.

Whatever happened to term limits?

Seems we’ve been discussing them for decades. The large majority of voters are FOR term limits, and it is reflected in polling time after time. On the national level, even Ted Cruz sponsored a bill for term limits. I’m sure it will die a slow and painful death, but it’s a bill, which happens… but rarely.

I believe we should build a coalition of North Carolinians to focus on the issue of term limits. There are so many things our political parties, and our citizens, can argue about, while we ignore opportunities to drive change in areas where we all generally agree. What could be an easier place to start than term limits? Right, left, republican, democrat, urban, rural, libertarian - it doesn’t matter (unless you’re authoritarian, but that’s who we want to prevent from holding power). We can all agree we are sick and tired of career politicians and we, the citizens, want to do something about it.

Benefits of Term Limits

If we enacted term limits in North Carolina, it would allow elected officials to actually be… elected officials. Currently, they spend a large amount of their time as candidates, even while in office, where they prioritize re-election over public service. If an elected official was limited to two terms, for example, at least during his/her second term, re-election would not demand all that official’s focus, and we might see people vote based on conscience instead of how the party tells them.

Term limits also create a broadly more fair system. The way the system is setup now, it is very difficult to remove a seated representative. For example:

Imagine the improvements we could realize almost immediately with term limits in NC (and beyond). When a seat is filled by a representative who will be reaching his/her limit at the end of the term, the next election will be a free and open election. This will create space for candidates from NC Libertarians, NC Forwardists, and other parties to participate in an election where there is no incumbent, and will also force Democrats and Republicans to rely more on actual policy position for candidates, not personality and connections.

Then, of course, there is the beautiful result of no more career politicians. For example, NC Representative Mickey Michaux retired a few years ago at the age of 87, after holding office for 35 years. Many North Carolinians believe that is far too long for any one person to hold the same position in our legislature. It is hard to imagine someone like that consistently putting the needs of his constituents above his own and those of his long-time donors, though.

Senior members often secure key committee positions, resulting in the concentration of power and a strong incentive for more junior members to “fall in line.” Meanwhile, these same rookies are left on the outside looking in when it comes to having an impact on policy. If there were term limits the general assembly would be forced to start finding some middle ground. Their power would have limits. It could lead to meaningful dialogue between multiple parties to do what’s in the best interest of everyday North Carolinians.

If you want to really dig into it, Nick Tomboulides does an incredible job of making the argument, addressing the potential objections, and concluding we need term limits in America. Check out his testimony in Congress from a few years ago if you haven’t seen it.

I should point out I am part of the leadership for the North Carolina Forward Party. We are working hard to gather signatures so we can gain ballot access. I want to make it clear the opinions I have shared above are my own, and are not to be considered a statement from the NC Forward Party.

Thank you for taking the time to read this today. I believe there are so many good people in NC who can come together over the things on which we agree and really make a difference in our state. I look forward to having this conversation with you.

If you would like to share your thoughts on term limits in North Carolina, I would love to hear from you. I can be reached at [email protected]

If you would like to help the Forward Party collect signatures for ballot access, go here for further instructions.

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Huntersville Liberty Warrior Eric Rowell

Eric catches the police directly in violation of their own rules, arbitrary though they may be, but, as usual, it looks like no one will be held accountable. Read Eric's note below, and then check to see if your speeding ticket was given legally.

Government is made up of people, and people are not perfect. Some of these people in government have been granted the power to seize your person or property, so people in government should always be held accountable when they abuse their power.

This isn't exactly groundbreaking stuff for the readers of this newsletter, but the recent story involving a Huntersville Police Officer stopping motorists allegedly for speeding while having an expired radar certification is a good example of why we all have to be vigilant in monitoring abuses of power. I am a staunch advocate for being involved in your local government because this is where the majority of us can have the greatest impact in reducing the size of government (or at least limiting its growth).

But for my consistent focus on the local over the past few years, this story would have very likely had a different outcome for the 25 motorists involved who ultimately had their tickets dismissed by the DA when this evidence came to light. An anonymous source provided me information that lead directly to Huntersville Police having to admit their error and take corrective action.

By consistently holding local government accountable over the years, I have established enough credibility that people in the community reach out to me with concerns - you can become this person in your community. Start by making sure you know when your local town board meetings are, then make sure you're receiving notice of the agenda and agenda packets for upcoming meetings, start reviewing those agendas, know who your local electeds and department heads are, know what is in your local budget, start asking questions, start asking for records, and find somewhere to start gathering an audience to share information about your local government with.

If your efforts can result in protecting even one person from government abuse, it's time well spent. 

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Courage in Human Action

by Joshua D. Glawson
LPNC Strategic Communications Adviser

"Human action is purposeful behavior." -Ludwig von Mises

Courage invokes us to take action.

For Aristotle, courage is the virtue that helps balance our instincts against recklessness and cowardice.

For Biblical teachings, courage is the opposite of fear, and courage is to face fear while remaining positive for Good reason(s).

For Thomas Jefferson, courage empowers the individual to become as an army of one; "one man with courage is a majority."

For Ayn Rand, "Courage is the practical form of being true to existence, of being true to truth" and living confidently within that courage.

For Ludwig von Mises, courage is thrusting one's self into the intellectual battle of the individual versus the collective, for the victory of truth and freedom for all.

Overall, having courage has more to do with the actions we take than merely having a thought. There are many people with brilliant ideas in the world, and there are fewer people who express those ideas, and even fewer are the number of people who take action with their ideas. It often takes courage to act on our ideas.

There are ways we can instill greater courage while building a growing network of like-minded, liberty-loving, individuals…

The first thing is to train your mind by reading more about each topic you are passionate about, and the ones that cause you the most frustration when discussing with others. Each person in the group should be learning.

Secondly, have in-depth conversations with your local chapters, to ensure you and others learn more about the topic. This is a technique like the division of labor for critical thinking. Include frequently holding presentations on these topics.

Third, actively invite new people to the meetings, even if it is simply for these discussions. By having new people, we encourage participation and growth for everyone involved. Create an environment where people feel welcome and comfortable to speak or voice their disagreements.

Fourth, give each person in the group a chance to speak, and give each individual an official title and a duty. These titles do not need to be lofty, and the duties do not need to be grand. Do not give big titles to people who do not have the time, energy, desire, or capacity to fulfill the role. Giving each person a title and a duty instills confidence, bolsters a sense of unity and shared responsibility, and encourages action. Our groups should not be strictly controlled or dominated by a central authority figure just because of their title or experience.

Fifth, work on a particular cause within your city together once the group agrees on the topic. When we practice working together as a group on a project, we can see how we as individuals can come together and accomplish great things. This further instills courage and confidence, while it works on practical applications for instilling Liberty in the world.

Sixth, coordinate with other local groups on projects for shared causes. By utilizing our networks for larger projects, we increase our chances of winning locally and regionally. These incremental wins reinforce courage, nourish confidence, and build up the number of active participants. We scale up our wins by branching out.

Seventh, whether we win or lose, throughout each step come back together as a group and as individuals to learn from one another and for our own sake. In chess, we learn that more can be learned from a lost game than from a game that is easily won.

The more we engage in action, the more we as individuals learn and grow. When we coordinate with others, and continue to spread those connections further and further, we grow this movement well beyond our regions, overcoming the current difficulties we face.

We each joined the Libertarian Party because we believe in Liberty and that it has an invaluable purpose in the world. Let us be outspoken in our regard to that value and become more than people of thoughts and words, let us take purposeful action for the cause of Liberty. It is far better that we take action and learn from failure than sitting passively in social groups complaining in circles about our constant frustrations and losses after doing nothing. Let our movement not be in vain. Take action. Be the change.

Joshua D. Glawson is a writer and speaker in the Liberty Movement. He has been active with the Libertarian Party of California since 2015. He now resides in his home state of North Carolina. Check him out at Home - Joshua D. Glawson (

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Interview with GNRC's Andy Stevens

by Rob Yates, LPNC Communications Director

The Tar Heel sat down with Andy Stevens, Vice President of Operations and Board member at Grass Roots North Carolina (GRNC), an organization working tirelessly to defend our Second Amendment rights in North Carolina. Andy is also the North Carolina State Director for Gun Owners of America ( A lot has been going on that affects your 2A rights in NC, much of which the LPNC has communicated to you in real time over the last month. Because of pressure from Liberty warriors, we saw both the removal of NC's anti-Black pistol permit restriction law, and the override of Governor Cooper's veto that would've left that Jim Crow law in place.

Now, we are looking at the potential for Constitutional carry to be reinstated in NC, but, as always is the case when politicians are involved, we are up against politics. Few people have a deeper understanding of the issue and the inner working of the surrounding politics than Andy, so we wanted to hear more from the insider's perspective.

Tar Heel: Andy, thank you so much for talking to us today. Before we get into the bills and changes in the legislature, tell us a little bit about yourself and about GRNC. How did you get involved, and what is your role there?

Andy Stevens: I'm a North Carolina "transplant" having grown up in Chicago, Illinois. I received an appointment to the United States Military Academy, West Point just before turning 18 and never turned back. During my service I was assigned to the XVIII Airborne Corps at Ft. Bragg in the early 80s and liked the state even back then. I permanently relocated to North Carolina in 2000 and have been a resident ever since. In 2012 and 2013, I became interested in gun rights and started using my free time to visit legislators in Raleigh as an individual. During my visits, I often ran across F. Paul Valone, GRNC President, doing the same thing, and saw the effectiveness of joining voices and efforts with an organization demonstrating a record of success. Truth be known, Paul Valone cornered me in a hallway one day and made me an offer I couldn't refuse, lol. The rest is history. Currently I'm a member of the GRNC Board of Directors and serve as GRNC Director of Legislative affairs and Vice-President of Operations. By the way, we are all unpaid, 100 percent volunteers. No dues, money, or donations going to fancy suits and shoes.

I'd also point out to your readers that I am the NC State Director with Gun Owners of America. Again, in this role with this organization I take great pride that I am not a paid employee, but, by my choice, an unpaid volunteer.

I do what I do for gun rights because I believe what I do is important beyond monetary compensation. Therefore, no one can falsely tag me with the "gun lobbyist" moniker.

Tar Heel: GNRC has accomplished so much in the past. Is there one legislative accomplishment of which you are most proud?

Stevens: Well, there have been many, but, of course, what got me into this fight in the first place was our racist, Jim Crow Pistol Purchase Permit system. As I began to collect firearms, I found it totally in variance with the Bill of Rights to submit to special trips to a sheriff's office and unnecessary waiting to receive permission slips of paper to purchase handguns, especially when rifles and shotguns did not require such procedures. Thus, my satisfaction in achieving its repeal a few weeks ago. Doing so over the veto of anti-gun, anti-Liberty Governor Roy Cooper was icing on the cake.

Tar Heel: That's a great segue into the current situation. Before we look at HB 189, though, can you explain, briefly, the pistol permit restrictions that were previously codified in law? Wehave covered this for our readers before to a degree, so I was hoping you could focus in particular on the operational aspects of that rule – why it contributes to so many delays in purchases and who it affects.

Stevens: Both our previous Pistol Purchase Permit and our current Concealed Handgun Permit systems were and continue to be flawed. They stand between citizens immediately exercising their rights to keep and bear arms. Despite state statutes, one hundred individual county sheriffs administer both programs. Some stay within the intent of the law, and others historically and currently abuse it.

The PPP by statute required your county sheriff to issue a permit or declare why not within fourteen days of application. Now, in Stokes County, my home, my Sheriff could accomplish this within 30 minutes. The same day! Not too inconvenient at all, except for the fact one had to go there in the first place.

However, sheriffs in counties like Wake, Guilford, and especially Mecklenburg, decided they could take weeks, months, years to drag out the issue. My two organizations have sued the Wake and Mecklenburg County Sheriffs multiple times and won judgements over the now repealed Pistol Purchase Permits and we are currently suing the Mecklenburg County Sheriff in Federal Court over his willful delays issuing Mecklenburg County applicants their Concealed Handgun Permits.

Interestingly, the newest Republican member of the NC Legislature, Representative Trisha Cotham, lives in Mecklenburg County. As a result of her recent Party switch, she and her family have been receiving credible threats, including death threats. At the legislature, she is provided physical security. At home, she is left to her own devices. She has applied for a concealed handgun permit, but, of course, her sheriff, Garry McFadden, has yet to see fit to issue her one. No better example of the need for permitless, or Constitutional, carry could be made, and this is the real-world example, not just a hypothetical example.

Tar Heel: That's so important to understand, as HB 189 would eliminate those barriers from people like Representative Cotham who have real need for protection. Can you further explain to the Tar Heel readers exactly what HB 189 does?

Stevens: In a nutshell, HB 189 would accomplish several objectives. First it would allow anyone in North Carolina who met the qualifications for issue of a CHP permit the right to carry in North Carolina without an actual permit. This, of course, would solve the perilous situation Representative Cotham currently finds herself in. It would also solve the real, although temporary, situation new residents find themselves in when they move to North Carolina and establish residence here. One cannot immediately apply for and receive even a temporary permit and new residents are thus left without being able to legally conceal carry until application and receipt of a permit.

Second, it specifically retains and does not repeal our current system of sheriff-issued concealed handgun permits. This is important because reciprocity with other states would terminate without an individually issued permit. Very important if you carry a handgun beyond our state's borders, for example. There are also federal statutes that limit where one can carry concealed without a permit that differs from where one can with a permit. Therefore, it is important to know the laws governing open and concealed carry in North Carolina. We can discuss this further in a moment, if you like.

Third, it reduces the age for lawful concealed carry to 18 versus the current 21. A federal appeals court has already ruled artificial age restrictions above age 18 are unconstitutional.

Finally, the last major piece of the bill would allow for expanded places of carry for elected officials. As was pointed out in the bill's debate, elected officials do make decisions that result in threats, including death threats. Not just Representative Trisha Cotham, either. Most importantly, this would allow legislators and elected officials to carry in the legislative buildings. This expanded carry privilege currently exists for some elected officials such as judges, district attorneys, and the like.

Tar Heel: But it wasn't clear cut, correct? Specifically, what was the training requirement? Why was that potentially problematic, or maybe a better question is, why are people over-reacting to that?

Stevens: Yes, training has become an unnecessary flashpoint regarding this bill. Ordinarily, a "true" constitutional carry bill would not encumber the citizen with a mandated training component. The bill, as originally drafted, was to be a Constitutional carry bill. However, such a bill would not, and I repeat, would not pass in the current legislature as a true Constitutional carry bill. The Speaker of the House, Representative Tim Moore, directed that a training component be added to the bill or he simply would not run it through his chamber. After much discussion, we at GRNC and GOA decided to support the bill with a training component to advance the bill. The merits of the bill even as a now-redefined permitless with training bill represent a significant improvement over our existing concealed handgun permit statute. During the hearing process, we recognized changing the nature of the bill required renaming it as well. Constitutional carry was removed from the title and the bill was simply and accurately renamed the "NC Freedom to Carry" bill.


Tar Heel: Following up on that, this seemed like a done deal just a few days ago, when you, LPNC members, and other defenders of Liberty gathered at the State House to make our voices heard. What changed since then, and what is the outlook right now?

Stevens: What changed? Well, at the last minute, the NRA stepped in and, without ever having been a part of the discussion, decided to kill the bill as it was not a "pure" Constitutional carry bill. More importantly, they killed it because it was not "their" bill. But guess what? Ask the NRA, where is their bill? The reality is, they never offered to run a Constitutional carry bill in this session of the legislature. Don't take my word, but ask the principal bill sponsor, Representative Keith Kidwell, of his opinion of the NRA. I dare say you won't be able to publish the result.

Of course, the reality also exists that some of the Republican supermajority in the House are not as fully supportive of gun rights as we'd like. There continues to be grumbling in the caucus of both chambers that voting on Constitutional carry, or even this version of permitless carry, is a step too far for them. Why? Because it may cost them their reelection in competitive districts. In other words, legislators often are more interested in their self-preservation and reelection than they are in the natural and Constitutional rights of their constituents. Surprised? Don't be! That's the reality of why, for example, it's taken ten years to repeal the PPP.

Tar Heel: The LPNC put out a call to action for people to sign your petition, which seemed to make a difference. What else can people do to send the message that they do not support politicians who do not support their rights?

Stevens: Encourage and support their competition. Run for political office yourself, or support candidates who share your views and positions. Do not concede the political battlefield to incumbents interested merely in their own reelection. In our situation, unfortunately, the best place to challenge incumbents is in the primary and not the general election. That's where unaffiliated voters can play a tremendous spoiler role. As for the Libertarian Party, develop and promote your own viable candidates. The key will be to focus on breaking the monopoly of the two-party system in Raleigh. Winning a well targeted race or two will send fear into the rest who will discover it "could happen to them," losing an election, too.

Tar Heel: If this ultimately fails, how can we hold our elected officials accountable?

Stevens: Politicians who are focused on reelection are often unwilling to take controversial positions and simultaneously make calculated decisions that take their base of support for granted. After all, "who else will gun rights voters vote for?" Replacing them at the ballot box is generally done during the primary, but promoting viable, electable third-party candidates, such as Libertarians, comes into play because, unfortunately, the reality is 95 percent of incumbents of either party who choose to run for reelection generally win.

Tar Heel: While we acknowledge that the LPNC, the GNRC, and other defenders of Liberty don't see eye-to-eye on every issue – in fact, we think it would be awful if everyone agreed on everything – we are big on single-issue coalitions where we work together to move causes forward where we do agree. What can Libertarians in North Carolina do to help you all move the needle toward protecting 2A rights for all the citizens of our state, and where do you see GRNC playing a role in helping amplify the actions we are taking in the LPNC?

Stevens: Add your voice to ours! Sign up for our GRNC and GOA state level alerts notifications to keep informed of developments, and most of all, follow the suggested actions to take. Our rights are continually under attack. We must remain vigilant, and we must forcefully push back against every assault upon our right to keep and bear arms.

Tar Heel: Andy, thank you so much for your time today. One final question for you, what message do you have for lovers of Liberty out there who want to preserve 2A rights, but also want to do so in a safe and responsible manner? How can they move forward, and how can they make their voices heard?

Stevens: Don't give up the fight. Get involved yourselves. Get others to raise their voices with yours. Join organizations of like-minded people like GOA, GRNC, or other freedom-endorsing groups. Liberty is not a two-party affair, either. The Libertarian Party of NC has long been recognized as one that fully supports Constitutional guarantees and freedoms. LP of NC candidates for office who return our GRNC Candidate surveys are generally, without question, rated as GRNC 4 STAR.

We at GRNC and GOA do not believe HB 189, or something similar, is dead in the current session. We will be working proactively with bill sponsors to advance the merits of this bill in the current session and will undertake efforts to improve its prospects, if necessary, as we move into the next general election cycle. Again, subscribe to our GRNC and GOA state level alerts and stay informed.

I've enjoyed talking with you today and I look forward to doing so again.

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There Is No Need to Protect Men from Trans Athletes

by Dee Watson, LPNC Secretary

When the government gets involved and spends billions of North Carolinian tax dollars in public schools, there are going to be a lot of arguments over how those schools are run. The latest argument is over House Bill 574 (i.e. the "Fairness in Women's Sports Act"), which determines who may compete in men’s and women’s sports within (K-12) public schools in North Carolina and schools that compete with them. Intramural sports in public colleges are also regulated by the bill.

The Libertarian solution would be to separate education and government, or at the very least to let the tax dollars follow the child so that parents may choose the school system their children attend, instead of having the money allocated for their child held hostage in the public system. If parents could choose where the tax dollars allocated for their children go, then they would influence and pick schools that align with their understanding of how people should be separated in sports. We would have a variety of solutions, and, while different conferences attempted different approaches to delineating people for the purposes of competitive sports, our experience and understanding of the pros and cons would grow in a respectful way while each group consented to the rules in the school of their choice. Instead, we have a system where legislators in the capital are determining the rules for every public school in the state.

Protecting women is great, and I mean that sincerely. Women have fought too hard for too long to see our rights stripped away under some arbitrary pretense that takes away power - which we have battled for, inch by inch, for centuries - and give it back to the government, subject to the whims of elected officials who bear allegiance solely to donors. 

Libertarians know all too well how quickly our rights can be stolen. We also know that the only way to protect the rights of women is to defend Liberty for all, and protect everyone's rights, no exceptions. Republicans do a great job of talking up small government and proclaiming they want to defend individual rights, but they seem to use women's rights as an excuse to attack the rights of transgender people. 

Who can forget the infamous HB2 (i.e. "The Bathroom Bill") that embarrassed NC. As is always the case when government comes in with a one-size-fits-all approach to "solve" a "problem" that only exists insofar as those elected officials have created it to anger their base, we are now looking at a proposal that creates far more problems than it solves in HB 574.

I am a former Division I athlete. If women weren't able to compete in separate divisions from men, I never would have been an athlete at all. Being in a sport was good for me, as it is for almost everyone who competes. Having clear, direct competition is healthy; it is fantastic that the number of girls and women engaging in competitive and recreational sports is increasing dramatically. 

I want to make sure I am clear on one point; I agree that transgender athletes should not be included unrestricted in female-only sports categories. Females should have the opportunity to compete separately from others. If the person is transitioning from female to male, that usually includes hormone treatments that create a huge advantage over any woman not taking those hormones. 

Further, males have biological advantages over females in athletics - advantages that have been selected for evolutionarily for billions of years across millions of species leading up to today. They have greater muscle mass, greater hemoglobin, greater height, greater mass, larger lung capacity, and hips that are far more conducive to athletics. Hormones will change testosterone levels, but have little impact on these other things. Males are just biologically different than females and transitioning from male to female does not erase all of these things. There is a clear issue that Riley Gaines should not have had to compete with Lia Thomas, but this bill does not solve that problem.

The categories for sports in the new bill are:

  1. Males, men, or boys.
  2. Females, women, or girls.
  3. Coed or mixed

A simple solution would be to change the males/men/boys category to open and allow anyone, males, transgender, and even women (who are more capable than I) to compete in the open category. This would allow everyone to compete. That is not what the NC Republican legislature did. For the purpose of the bill, the NC Republican legislature defined sex based solely on birth. That means that transgender men (biological women who are using hormones to transition) would be required to compete with women, even though they have a medical advantage. So the bill doesn't even protect women's sports, unless it is intended to exclude transgender people from sports entirely.

There is no need to protect men's sports from Lia Thomas or any other transgender person. However, the NC Republican legislature has bizarrely written a bill that does so. Slightly different bills have been passed in the house and senate, and I hope that they are modified to permit transgender individuals in an open category. Otherwise, I fear that NC will undergo the embarrassment of bathroom bill 2.0., or worse, see the state-mandated end of women's sports.

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