Randy & Fracking; HB-14-1153; The Plan; Supporting the Troops; The Challenge of Liberty; Advisory panel seats; Summer Seminars; RTD Board

January 20, 2014 at 9:38 pm

In This Issue From the Chair

Randy & Fracking
The Plan
Supporting the Troops
The Challenge of Liberty
Advisory panel seats
Summer Seminars
RTD Board
Randy & Fracking

Randy Luallin (L) will, I hope, be our next Boulder County Commissioner.

I asked him his position on fracking.  I don’t agree with it but I’d like other people to comment.

My position is based on the rights of individuals and the overall right of the environment in the guise of “mother nature” to exist.  In this last segment I would disagree with many libertarians on the issue of the EPA.  I do not believe that all people and especially Corporate interest have the interest of the environment in their business practices.   Since Government is to protect rights it must include that of the communal well being of the environment both in the moment and future generations.  Therefore it is appropriate to protect against the misuse i.e. polluting and fouling of our communal nest.  That being said, lets look at the issue of “Fracking”  which is the process of hydraulically forcing out natural or “methane” gases locked in the earth for use by humans.  Methane is a natural phenomenon and plentiful, more so in some areas than in others.  In North Dakota I learned that early well diggers (digging  by hand) died (mysteriously) at that time but now we know that they hit at shallow depths pockets of natural gas and were asphyxiated.  It naturally leaks out of the ground in many places.  With contact with the atmosphere it is fairly benign since it is diluted rapidly.  Its use is profound.  It is one of the cleanest burning fuels cheap and easy to burn.  Most of the West makes use of it to heat their homes in the Winter and cook their fuel and heat their water.  It is adaptable to running vehicles but requires compression for storage in a tank.  Here in Australia they have duel fuel vehicles that use both petro gas and natural gas or the derivative of natural gas we call propane.  With a flip of a switch on your dash you can burn either fuel in the same carburated system!  I want one!.   Currently, the price of NG is  cheap and prevalent but other countries currently provide a lucrative market.  There are two core issues involved in Fracking.  One is the use of what was once referred to a proprietary chemicals in the process.  The general knowledge of what was used is known but each company had their own recipe.  These are now public and contain several carcinogenic compounds.   Most fracking takes place deep in the ground at levels we would normally bury radioactive waste and other toxic chemicals.  However, to reach those depths one has to pass thru aquifers that supply water for human use, agriculture and of course nature itself.  To avoid contamination wells are required to have casing as it passes through the upper levels of the earth.  It is known that approximately 3%  or more of well casings fail due to age or cracking.   At the federal level the fracking process has been removed from the EPA requirements and oversight by the Bush/Cheney administration.  At the State level it is regulated but the amount of wells active and inactive are far greater than the alloted amount of monitoring  personnel can manage.   Corporations cannot be trusted to self oversight evidenced by blatant violations.  When accidents and violations  occur and peoples rights individually and communally are violated it is very difficult to not only bring the violator to justice but to receive remuneration and corrective action which can be very costly.   The current mentality is to flat out cease all operations by popular vote.  As a Libertarian self responsibility includes that of corporate interests.  Until an adequate system and process to monitor and make good errors can be formulated to protect citizens and nature I would side with cessation.  The cost to monitor and legally bring to justice and create cure of violations should be born by those reaping the profits and not by taxpayers.

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L. Neil Smith wrote:

Dear Ralph,

Thank you for your commentary on our lunch, which I enjoyed very much.

If I get a chance to speak to your group, I will be explaining how
libertarians *and only libertarians) hold the key to getting this
country straightened out. If you want a preview, see the chapter called
“The Plan” in my award-winning new book _Down With Power: Libertarian
Policy in a Time of Crisis_.

Naturally, I’d prefer that people buy it, in paper or e-book format
from Amazon.com or B&N.com, but it can be viewed in its “beta” form at

Look for “The Plan”.

All the best,


– – – – –


Another bill to stifle holding our election officials accountable.

Mary Eberle says it far better than I can:

Dear Senator and Representatives,

HB-14-1153 sets up an opportunity for public officials who skirt the law to do so without consequences in many jurisdictions. Under this bill, defendants SHALL be awarded attorney fees if the judge dismisses a case because of a defendant’s motion to dismiss. All defendants will make such motions, and the courts will discourage all but the wealthiest in our society from taking such risk of public interest litigation.

Already most Coloradans cannot afford to seek justice in our court system when they detect wrong-doing by elected officials or others. This bill will stifle even those of moderate means, and our society will suffer.

Please withdraw HB-14-1153. It is an anti-transparency and anti-good government bill.

Thank you for your service to all Coloradans.


Mary C. Eberle

If you want me to provide you with a copy of the proposed bill, please email me: ralphs@dos32.com

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Supporting the Troops

The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed legislation ( http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/dec/23/rep-paul-ryan-defends-cuts-military-retirement/ ) that, in effect, cuts the real value of their benefits.

What is our libertarian position on this?

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Boulder County seeks applicants for advisory panel seats.


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The Challenge of Liberty

Bryan Griffin notified me of the following:

The libertarian Independent Institute in California (obviously not to be confused with the local Independence Institute) is hosting a free seminar in Denver this June  for college students. You might pass it on  for  Libertarian parents  to alert their kids, or any students we know like Nathan (it is open to those who would be in college Fall 2014, they need to apply for it, I think Heidi’s son would also be an entering freshmen),


The Challenge of Liberty
Summer Seminars for Students

2014 Schedule:
College: June 16–20 (Denver, CO)
Colorado Seminar: June 16-20, 2014

Alex Padilla (Metropolitan State College of Denver)
Ivan Pongracic (Hillsdale College)
Robert Higgs (Independent Institute)
Michael Thomas (Utah State University)
Jose Yulo (Academy of Art University, San Francisco)
Christopher Coyne (George Mason University)

– – – – –

A reminder that our weekly

Libertarian Lunch
645 30th Street
Boulder 80303
will be held this Thursday at 12:30

This week’s topics:
A poor person wishes to do fracking on her land. There is a 10% chance the pipe will break in the aquifer shared with her neighbors. Is there a role for government in this scenario?  If there is a role, what rules should be imposed?

Libertarian position on cutting benefits to veterans.

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Ralph Shnelvar
Libertarian Party of Boulder County