Welcome Home!

August 2nd, 2011   Submitted by Seth King

My wife and I have safely arrived in New Hampshire! Thanks to the help of my father’s packing, towing and driving we made the more than three thousand mile journey from the People’s Republic to the Free State. I have some observations about the trip as well as the arrival that I would like to share with you.

For starters, you might be surprised to read how few police we saw on the highways. Without exaggeration, a person traveling on the freeway will likely encounter as many highway patrol, sheriffs and city police between the one hundred mile stretch from San Francisco to Auburn, California as we did between the three thousand mile drive from Auburn to Manchester, New Hampshire. This only goes to reinforce my conviction that California is, in fact, a police state.

Conversely, in my entire life I have never seen as much corn as I did through Nebraska, Iowa and Illinois. That entire region is monoculture. I have always understood Iowa to be the corn capital of the world, but the other states took me by surprise. Can anyone tell me if it has always been that way or if it is a new phenomenon due to the recent corn and ethanol subsidies?

Moving across the country is a serious undertaking. We loaded my father’s truck to the brim, bought a tow dolly in Nevada, and from there towed my wife’s car, which was also filled to the brim. This reduced our gas mileage to an average of twelve miles per gallon. The median price for gas along the way was three dollars and seventy seven cents per gallon. And the distance traveled worked out to roughly thirty-one hundred miles. If you do the math you’ll find that we spent roughly one thousand dollars in gasoline. With an empty load returning back to California, we’re hoping to only have to give my father about seven hundred fifty dollars for gas money. Then we have to account for food and lodging costs, which were kept to a minimum. Overall, it will be much less expensive than any other moving options.

I am grateful for credit cards for this reason. Over the last several years I have built up a large credit line without which would have made this move impossible. That being said, my wife and I have pushed the limits of moving costs despite our best attempts at keeping them low. The truth is, a small raise in the price of gasoline could, and likely will in the future, prevent others from making the move with anything more than the clothes on their backs. It is my belief that future economic instability and police statism will increase the cost, and risk, of moving long distances. This is why I urge those of you who would like to move to New Hampshire to do so as soon as possible. If you have the means now, you may not later.

It was my intention to immediately write this post upon my arrival in New Hampshire. As it would be, the frenzy of activity that seems constant in The Shire has delightfully prevented me from doing so. The liberty community in New Hampshire has been overwhelmingly welcoming to me, my wife and my father. Since Saturday the three of us have been to a barbeque in Manchester, enjoyed a warm water river and soft sandy beach in Concord, previewed the documentary Libertopia at the Keene Activist Center, and toured several dwellings in Grafton, all the time guided by a legion of free staters.

My wife, who is normally very shy and uninterested in social activity, especially with strangers, has taken a liking to other porcupines. They’re, or should I say “we’re” an interesting bunch. Furthermore, my father has been exposed to more liberty-loving individuals in the last few days than he likely has in his entire life. Could this be the proof he needs to move to New Hampshire with my mother? I hope so. If my parents do make the move, it will have been the hospitality the free staters have shown my father that made all of the difference.

I’d like to finish by giving a great big thanks to all of the people who have helped us along the way and welcomed us home!

37 Responses to “Welcome Home!”

  1. nhwulfNo Gravatar says:

    welcome home. if you need or would like help with anything i am about 15 minutes away. dont hesitate to ask.

  2. JessicaNo Gravatar says:

    Awesome- I’m jealous!

  3. PhilNo Gravatar says:

    What is the best way to get in contact with the community there?

    • Seth KingNo Gravatar says:

      I first got in contact by joining forums like freestateproject.org and freekeene.com. If you show up in Manchester or Keene and send out a Porc 411 you will likely be shown a very good time. From there, you can decide which town you want to move to.

      All it takes is meeting a few people and you’ll be dragged from place to place. Free Staters are very eager to show others a good time.

  4. Audrey BarberNo Gravatar says:

    Congrats, Seth….tell your Papa “Hi” for me. Glad you are so happy. Happyness in this world is kind of rare these days. Hope it lasts for you.

  5. valhelionNo Gravatar says:

    Congrats on the safe journey. I want to be up there too, one day.

  6. The ScriptNo Gravatar says:

    Congratulations on the successful move Seth! I am glad to hear that you are enjoying yourself already. Good luck starting your life in your new home!

  7. KristNo Gravatar says:

    The Free State Project sounds cool.
    To bad it’s causing a contraction instead of an expansion.
    The idea that all the freedom loving people in the other should states move to this one state causes this contraction.
    Why not have everyone stay where they are and convert their geographical location to a more freedom loving place, an expansion.
    I guess it’s a defeatist attitude.
    This whole thing is going under, make your way to higher ground.
    I’m more of a stand on the front line kind of person.
    I’ll stay here in Cali and try to convert more people.
    I’ve never ran away from anything and I’m definitely not going to run away from the state.
    I don’t hold anything against people who act in their best self interest.
    It’s only natural.
    At least through this website you can still reach out to others around the nation.

    • Seth KingNo Gravatar says:

      It’s not like it’s all peaches and cream in New Hampshire. There is still a hell of a statist problem here, too. We’re not all relaxing in shangri-la. It’s a tactical maneuver. How has being 1% of the population worked out for libertarians the last four decades? If you’re happy with your results, by all means, stay in California. If not, then consider moving to New Hampshire where we are actually making a difference.

    • No offense, Krist, but I think you’re the one with the defeatist attitude.

      You’d rather stay in the Golden State and fight for progress like a salmon swimming upstream instead of going to a place where you can see some real progress being made. I came to New Hampshire from New York City, a police state very similar to California. I tried political activism only to see defeat after defeat whether it was campaigning or lobbying, phone banking or leaflet distribution.

      With a quasi-paramilitary-style police force and heavy taxation, I was basically paying extra money to be controlled. To live in NYC you either have to be very wealthy or very poor and on a variety of welfare programs, and I lived enough of my life in the latter group. Any middle class left in NYC is made up of government employees.

      Seth is not running from anything; in fact he is running towards something. Imagine your ancestors, when they immigrated to America. Regardless of wherever they came from, and that they left to come to the U.S. because things were not working for them where they were. Would you describe them as having a defeatist attitude also? Many immigrants came to this country from places with much less freedom than the U.S. and like they, Seth and I came to New Hampshire in search of a better life.

      Why don’t you come visit NH, let us Free Staters show you around, and then you decide whether we all ran away from something, or ran towards something awesome.

      Seth and Kitty, welcome home!

  8. Ray GergenNo Gravatar says:

    In defense of the People’s Republic of California, I have driven from Sacramento to LA and not seen one highway patrol, city, or county law enforcement car. Of course that doesn’t mean they weren’t watching.

    Hoping the best for you and Kitty.

    • Seth KingNo Gravatar says:

      I, too, have noticed that there is less presence between Sacramento and L.A. However, I did get one of my two speeding tickets in Kern County.

  9. AgoristTeen1994No Gravatar says:

    Congratulations on the move Seth…I considered moving to NH for the Free State Project for a long time but finally decided on Wyoming for the Free State West where the people tend to be a bit more focused on the reserved, quite monkey-wrenching of the state vs. the in-your-face kind of activism of NH…thus Wyoming is a bit more to my tastes. Though there are some heavy advantages and disadvantages to each state. But anyway again, congratulations on the move.

    • Seth KingNo Gravatar says:

      Thanks for the well wishes! As far as where to move, I would just recommend visiting each state before you choose.

    • AgoristTeen,

      I’m glad you picked up and moved somewhere. I don’t think New Hampshire has a monopoly on the potential to limiting government, so better that you go to Wyoming than stay in whatever statist cesspool you used to call home.

      Free State Project members have seen many legislative successes, with over a dozen Free Staters elected to the state legislature and even more elected to positions in NH cities and towns. Free Staters in office have also written a lot of legislation as well as supported pro-liberty legislation, much of which has been passed into law.

      So I wouldn’t say the whole crowd is in-your-face civil disobedience as you describe it. Though that crowd is certainly the most vocal and get the most attention from the liberty-oriented as well as mainstream media, so it would make sense that you’d come to that misconception. The civ dis crowd in mainly centralized in Keene, whereas the less wild, more discreet crowd is located in the larger cities of Manchester and Nashua and the state capitol, Concord. Manchester has far more Free Staters than Keene. You should also keep in mind that a lot of the New Hampshire liberty-oriented media sources like Free Talk Live and Free Keene and Cop Block are based in Keene and are heavily influenced by the civil disobedience culture that has emerged there.

      Topless protests, dope smoking in public squares and heated confrontations with the police will always get more media attention than a newly passed piece of pro-liberty legislation or a town budget hearing.

      • AgoristTeen1994No Gravatar says:

        Correction Daniel I haven’t moved yet, since I’m only 17, I’ll be moving in the near future though. Though I suppose you’re right about the misconceptions involving NH.

  10. RJ MillerNo Gravatar says:

    I am unsure about whether or not I will ever make such an endeavor, but at the very least I will surely check out PorcFest in the years to come.

    Just remember that we all met here before any of us became famous!

  11. JustSayNoToStatismNo Gravatar says:

    I’m sure having a strong voluntaryist network of friendship and support will have a positive impact on your quality of life. It’s more than just a move, it’s a lifestyle change!! Congratulations Seth.

  12. Audrey BarberNo Gravatar says:

    This move reminds me of when the Mormons transferred to Utah. My husband’s grandparents were on one of those covered wagon trains. We are not Mormons but know a lot about that history, him having been raised there in a Mormon home and community. They certainly made an impact, that is for sure.

  13. LinuxNo Gravatar says:

    I envy you :P. I’m stuck in the neo-conservative state of Georgia. Around here it’s all fake anti-govs. I get heated scorn and disrespect from friends for even suggesting the state is wrong and a voluntary society based off of self-ownership is morally right, not that that makes me back down. *insert Johny Cash song “I Won’t Back Down.”

  14. QuantaNo Gravatar says:

    Heyas! Been following your blog for a while now …. glad to see that you and you’re wife decided to take the plunge and move to NH. My own wife and I couldn’t bear to move that far away from what little family we have (we’re in Colorado) so we have begun to setup our own homestead on the Colorado plains.

    Oh how I envy you and your wife! When I first started following the FSF many years ago I hoped that they would choose Wyoming (and thus make it easy for me to relocate). To be in the middle of such a welcoming (and liberty loving) group pulls at me. I almost want to jump in the car right now and drive out there!

    Anyways, good luck in setting up your home and getting settled generally. Kudos to you for putting your ideals where your mouth is.

  15. Ryan TaylorNo Gravatar says:

    I’m glad to hear that you made it safely, brother. There’s no doubt in my mind that you’ll do great things with the support of your new community and “thank you” to all of the free-staters for being so welcoming and encouraging to you.

    Regarding your corn question, you should watch King Corn, it’s illuminating and very well made, in my opinion.

    The issue of California being a police state is definitely evident in my many travels all over the state. Obviously, it varies from day-to-day. On some trips to LA, San Diego and back to Northern California, I witnessed all sorts of police activity including hand-cuffed kids sitting car-side, surrounded by squad cars and black ops vehicles as well as regular traffic stops and your standard speed traps. During the last few days in Vegas I noticed a massive influx of police presence on the strip on weekend nights versus Wednesday and Thursday. Last night I saw a full-sized police bus, two patty-wagons and a couple of squad cars on one intersection alone. The fact that they fill buses with civilians and cart them off, en masse, to kidnapping chambers is terrifying and sad.

    In any case, enjoy your freedom and continue to fight for ours. We all appreciate it.

    • LinuxNo Gravatar says:

      Wow, that’s amazing. I had no idea it was that bad out there. Sounds like a WWII Germany in terms of police activity.

  16. Glad to see you got there all right, Seth. I should be arriving there in a little over a month. Thanks for posting the info about your trip. I’m wondering, what did you do to keep down the lodging expenses?

  17. Christian H.No Gravatar says:

    I learned about this site from your interview on Anarchast. This already looks like a great website, and is added to my daily queue.
    Anyway, I live in Illinois, and I can say, yes, we grow a lot corn. But we have plenty of wheat, too. You likely drove through the middle, which is pretty flat; the Northern and Southern reaches are much more diverse, environmentally and agriculturally.

    • Seth KingNo Gravatar says:

      Hey Christian!

      Thanks for the info, but tell me, has Illinois always been a heavy corn producer, or just since the recent ethanol bubble?

      • Christian H.No Gravatar says:

        I’m not terribly sure if production’s grown any, but I do know we have been second in crop yield, maybe first occasionally, for a long time running. I’ve lived here all 22 years of my life, and I always remember seeing corn everywhere (I lived in a small town surrounded by crops it); either that or soybeans. An ethanol research facility or two have sprung up in my area in more times, particularly at the universities.

  18. dpalmeNo Gravatar says:

    Seth, you never cease to make me want to move to NH. I only live about 25 minutes from the NH border, but you always make it sound like some sort of AnCap utopia 😛