I am sincerely grateful that a solid work ethic and the pursuit of excellence (not perfection) had been instilled in me by the examples I saw in my own family. I can’t say we were poor, because my family’s fortunes seemed to settle more to either extreme of being broke, or flush. I got to see both sides and the middle of the economic spectrum in detail. I know how the ‘other half’ lives.
I loved summers for as long as I can remember, its arrival meant that I could get out of Florida and go up north to Ohio to work and play on my grandparent’s farm. The first job I had that I actually got paid for, was when I was twelve years old. What started as a modest newspaper delivery route soon became the second-largest in the city of Springfield, Ohio. I just kept using my own earnings to buy out the other paper boys, and when we finally moved up to New Hampshire a couple of years later, I was able to sell my business for a handsome profit. I was hooked on self-reliance from that point on.
My Mom died after an extended and hard-fought bout with cancer. She was 48, I was a high school freshman of 14, and the loss exposed a profound realization of just how precious, fleeting and fragile our time here really is. As I grew up I did the usual things like pumping gas, washing dishes and mowing lawns. One of the best jobs I had was as the host of my own radio program when I was a sophomore in high school. I had become entirely self-sufficient. If I couldn’t find a job I liked, I’d invent one. Pulling my own weight gave me dignity and self-respect. From my fourteenth birthday I felt the pangs of pride and from that time on I would refuse to accept even a single dime that I did not earn—from anyone.
My sophomore year through graduation was spent at Fordham University in the Bronx of New York City. In order to pay my own way, I scrubbed the school’s toilets, (calling myself “Commander Commodee”) and managed the campus center at night that gave me time to study. I graduated from Fordham University in New York City in 1978 and then spent a little time in Law School. It didn’t take too long for me to figure out that I really didn’t want to be a lawyer, I wanted to travel and see the world, and so I did.
After graduating in May of 1978 with a B.A. in English and in-depth credits in History, Political Science and Philosophy, I moved into Manhattan and took a job as a legal hearing representative for fraud investigations for a major national insurance company. It wasn’t long before I was offered a promotion and a transfer to San Diego. My cross-country trek was interrupted with a visit to my sister, right here in Phoenix. I never made it to San Diego, it just felt ‘right’ to stay.
Today, I’m learning to invest as a currency speculator in the foreign exchange market. I’ve made a lot of mistakes, just like people do. But you’ll not find an honest man who can say that I have ever cheated or stolen from them, even though I have managed to embarrass myself more times than I care to recount. The good thing about having made mistakes along the way is that each incident of significance has served a good purpose. Like God himself slapping me upside the head to straighten me out.
My greatest embarrassment is in not getting involved in the political process sooner. Like most other people, I was content to complain while I waited for someone else to ‘fix’ government, or to restore my freedoms. Then one day, I had had it. I drew a line in the sand and convinced myself that if ‘they’ ever imposed upon my rights, then I would get into it. My embarrassment comes from knowing that the line I drew kept retreating. Finally, I couldn’t let it go any further. I had to admit to myself that nobody else was going to stand up for the people. And if I didn’t do it, it wasn’t gonna get done. I view my participation as a duty I owe as the price of my own freedom, and at the same time, a privilege to serve others. The individual rights our founding fathers died to protect are so important to me because I can see that this generation will either destroy the last vestiges of the freedoms that make us unique, or reclaim them.
My decision to run for Governor is really very simple, I just want my Freedoms, my Rights and my Responsibilities back. I believe that the gift of Life is far too precious, and far too fleeting to turn over to anyone else. I do not pretend to know better how you should run your Life. No one knows better how to do that than you. I don’t want to spend your money. I believe your money is yours. Like Harry Browne said, “it is up to you to spend it, save it, invest it or give it away as you see fit, not how some faceless far-removed bureaucrat decides you should”.
Only a handful of individuals have even held the seat of this States’ Governorship, and I am confident that each and every one would tell us that 99.9% of what they needed to know to function in office was learned in office. This position is so unique; there literally is no way to prepare. Prior experience only says they can ‘copy’ what the ones who brought us to this point have done. Is that what we want, more of the same? A grasp of the Constitution, common sense and the integrity to follow through in doing what is right, are preferable to laying claim to having been “successful” at getting elected. I am intent on changing the way things get done in Arizona and not concerned with how they are being done now. I have no stronger desire than to restore our State to its’ former greatness and to leave a legacy of individual Freedom to our next generation.
History shows that government usually screws up just about everything it gets into and only makes matters worse. I hope you’ll join me in this grassroots effort, and I’ll ask that you support the campaign in every way that you can, even if it’s just talking about it to your neighbors and persuading them to get up, get out and vote this time around. You can be assured that this time you will not be limited to a choice of the lesser of two evils. Now that you know probably more about me than you wanted to, let me share my thoughts on a few of the issues that seem to come up time and again.
The Libertarian Party is the third largest political party in the United States. Millions of Americans have voted for Libertarian Party candidates in past elections throughout the country, despite the fact that many state governments place roadblocks in our path to keep our candidates off the ballot and deprive voters of a real choice.
1. The Libertarian Party takes action to reduce Big Government.
Not just analysis of what’s wrong with Big Government. Not just news about abuses and increases of Big Government. Direct action to make government smaller than it is today through elections.
2. The Libertarian Party is working to dramatically reduce Big Government spending, taxes, debt, regulations, bureaucracies, foreign meddling, and invasions of our personal freedoms.
Not “reform” them. Not “replace” them. Certainly not add to them. That’s what Democrats and Republicans do.
The Libertarian Party and its candidates are working to shrink Big Government. What will this leave? Individual liberty and a small, constitutional government that is limited to defending our lives, liberty and property.
3. Without the Libertarian Party, the pro-freedom activists in the two old parties stand no chance.
The Libertarian Party gives liberty-lovers within the Democratic and Republican Parties the juice they need to effect change. Neither of the two old parties will budge without the threat of a small-government competitor.
4. Libertarian candidates take liberty all the way to the General Election.
The Republican Party is especially notorious for working against and defeating its own small government candidates in primary elections. This was on display at the 2012 Republican national convention where party operatives changed and bent the rules to deny Ron Paul delegates their hard-earned right to nominate their candidate from the floor.
In contrast, most Libertarians make it to the general election to challenge Big Government – when voters are listening.
5. The Libertarian Party is consistent and principled.
Libertarians work for everyday taxpayers, workers and voters – not Special Interests. Not to be part of the machinery of Big Government. Not to get government jobs. Not to grab “our share” of the goodies.
Make government small, allow free markets to thrive, uphold personal liberties and keep our nation at peace. This will produce economic prosperity, safety, and opportunity – and make possible widespread, generous charity.
6. The Libertarian Party is the greatest liberty recruiter and educator in America. Every election year.
The Libertarian Party is the premiere political organization in America for going well beyond “preaching to the choir” and awakening ordinary Americans to the possibilities of liberty.
Libertarian candidates reach everyday voters and taxpayers who never read liberty literature – and don’t even know it exists. Libertarian candidates show how low taxes, low government spending and much less government authority make life better for Americans.
In 2012, over 15 million votes were cast for Libertarian candidates by voters who liked what they heard and said “Yes” to liberty.
7. The Libertarian Party is the best-leveraged liberty investment in America.
In addition to providing all the above benefits at a bargain price, the Libertarian Party is the most efficient and effective alternative party to the Democrat and Republicans. Ballot access is the key to legitimacy in elections and to challenging the Big Government status quo. For decades, the Libertarian Party has jumped through hoops to place more candidates on the ballot in more states and at the lowest average cost of any political party in America. Highly cost-effective activism for liberty.