A description of my 2014 Porcfest experience in video format:
A description of my 2014 Porcfest experience in video format:
A description of my 2014 Porcfest experience in video format:
Preface: This blog post is about the eleventh Porcupine Freedom Festival, an annual event held in Lancaster, NH, that is designed to promote the Free State Project. The Free State Project is the world’s best hope for establishing freedom, primarily because of the advantage of putting outside-the-system activists in physical proximity with one another. I lay out a roadmap for why/how I think the FSP can and will succeed here.
I make the assertion that people should go ahead and sign the FSP Statement of Intent, because it doesn’t matter if people change their minds and not all 20,000 make the move. One of the reasons I make this assertion is that, while the FSP is going on, more natives who sympathize with them will come forward. At PorcFest, I spoke with a NH native who noted how lucky he was that he knew about Keene CopBlock before hearing about Ron Paul (who is arguably numerically the most successful Libertarian/Anarchist/Voluntaryist activist in history). It was a beautiful thing.
I registered for Porcfest and got my campsite 3 weeks prior. The tent sites were all taken. I had to get an RV site, despite not owning an RV. If I wasn’t in a hurry, It was about a 13-minute walk from my tent to where the majority of the events were occurring. I lost some weight.
Walks from my tent to where the action was were rarely linear. While walking, there were many things to look at. Everywhere. Walking to “Agora Valley”, the name for the cluster of shops on the campground during Porcfest. Walking to the bathroom. Walking to the tents and the pavilion at the end of the campground. Everywhere. There were tents with nice decorations, like gold and black flags, or fun pro-freedom phrases. There were cars with bumper stickers to read. Lots of cars and tents with something distracting. But one of the biggest and most pleasant distractions was bumping into people. I encountered people I knew only through contact on the internet through email, internet forums, etc. or people I knew indirectly through hearing about their activism or hearing them appear on podcasts. Or just people I had never heard of before.
I could not fairly summarize the great conversation I had with new people at my first Porcfest, but some conversations I had stick out. Like a conversation I had with a government official who is hacking away at the harmful effects of the state, slowly, one-by-one. She was very principled, and I was impressed by how well she was able to give clarity and distinction her ideas. In addition to being successful at getting elected, she has been known to hold signs by the side of the road to inform drivers of suspicionless checkpoints. She mines Bitcoin. And she has turned away job offers on principle. It was an amazing thing to hear. What an activist! A state rep who also likes outside-the-system activism!
One of the things I’d recommend to Porcfest newcomers is to avail yourself to the novelty of watching podcasts live. Just try it once. Most of the podcasters who attended porcfest held their show inside the LRN.fm media room, which was a room with a table and a lot of chairs for people to sit down to watch. The concept of celebrity is not a concept I’m really into, so I did not collapse in awe when I saw may favorite podcasters. I appreciate the work that many porcupine (the slang term for Free State Project sympathizers) podcasters do to educate the world, to bring forward the facts, news, and ideas that the people need to know about and enjoyed seeing them live.
A pleasant observation I’ve made about Porcfest is that there is a community. “Unity”, “brotherhood” whatever good word you wanna use. Examples?:
Other exemplars of *community* were walking about, but these were some of the ones I encountered personally.
I traveled to New Hampshire by plane. On the return trip, I stopped at an airport in New York. I didn’t remember if the airport was in New York City. But then, when I noticed the airport had some newfangled technology stuff that I’d never seen and confused me, I knew I was in NYC.
When I got off my final flight and left the airport to drive home, I took some photographs. Photos with symbolic nature. Photos showing that I had left that oasis of Bitcoin enlightenment, and was re-entering a world plagued by bad technology.
Competition was fierce in the One-pot Cookoff. This event was so good that TWO of them were held at Porcfest! This event has been going on for 9 Porcfests! Judges paid a fee, and in return, they got good food. The competitors prepared food items for the judges to consume. There were some sizable cash prizes. I tried a large variety of items, many of which I do not ordinarily eat. The exposure to unfamiliar items was great! In this photo you see blueberry bread and sourdough bread with feta.
That’s all the Porcfest content I have for now. See you later!
And don’t just take my word for it! Avail yourself to other coverage of Porcfest!
Yep. Both major and minor media sources:
You’ll never know who you’ll come across just by chance at Porcfest. I had a conversation with a Virginian who went to Keene and got himself a physical copy of the Shire Society Declaration. Hey, any piece of parchment paper is just as good as another, right? But in all seriousness, the government’s use of fancy pieces of paper with words on them, is part of their game to get the people to see their organization as acceptable. The Shire Society can beat them at their game.
You can’t say too much about cryptocurrency. Yes, I’ve got more cryptocurrency content. Dogecoin was heavily promoted. This video proves it:
There were multiple Bitcoin ATMs at Porcfest. Thanks to Lamassu. I didn’t need any Bitcoin, but I threw a 5 dollar bill in there just for the experience. It felt good when I was done.
We took a group photo on Saturday. Presumably, the goal was to assemble as many people together on to the field and photograph them to show a how much Porcfest has grown. Now you can’t herd cats, and some attendees weren’t there on Saturday, so in this year’s and every year’s photo you only see a portion of the people who went to Porcfest.
Speaking of herding cats, Vermin Supreme came to the group photo with a megaphone. It seems that he has sympathies with some of the goals of the Free State Project, and would like very much to grace us with his presence. He called on the crowd to chant: “I say ‘Zombie’ and you say ‘Power!'”, “I say ‘Mandatory’ and you say ‘Toothbrushing!'” They gladly complied. Me too. Mandatory toothbrushing was one of his campaign talking points in 2012, when he ran for the Democratic presidential nomination.
One of the nice things about Porcfest was seeing anarcho-capitalists and other folks with extreme views getting along with folks with not extreme views. People who disagree on things can get along respectfully.
Signs that Free State Project participants and sympathizers are willing to align with people with different but similar goals, willing to align with a wide variety of people and movements:
The party was probably 90+ percent heterosexual. The way to identify the people who actually were LGBT was to notice the people who were most conservative in their behavior and dress.
No part of my costume was crucial, except the bowtie, which was done simply for satire. Bowties have certain cultural connotations.
How many bigwigs, Very Important Persons, and other such celebrities were at Porcfest? Well, it’s a number than cannot be known. Due to its subjectivity (who is a bigwig is subjective). and due to the fact that the campground is so big, and Porcfest is so big (in terms of attendees); You can’t bump into everyone. I do know one thing. People who are well-versed in Bitcoin and are well-versed in speaking about Bitcoin are celebrities and very important in my heart.The Bitcoin Group recorded an episode face-to-face. In person. Everyone there. So cool! If Andreas Antonopoulos would have been there, half of Porcfest would have crapped their pants.
I spent silver while I was there. I used Shire Silver, which comes in the size and shape of a credit card. One of the things that makes it one of the best forms of spendable silver (it is silver made in convenient carrying size, not large pieces to be held on as an investment) is that it comes in grams. To hell with the King! And his measurements! The good people of the world have gotten rid of British rule and should also be getting rid of the King’s old systems of measurement, like ounces.
Lyn claims that she is not wealthy and thus has had good reason to request donations. This case is important. She said that if everyone at Porcfest donated a small amount of Bitcoin, they might have enough to reach their donation goal. You will see the address to send donations by going to freeross.org
There were drones, presumably being flown for photography purposes. Which central Free State Project authority managed this? Silly question, Porcfest is full of people acting on their own. Who knows whose drone it was? Who cares? People step up and provide their own ideas and talent; that’s the Porcfest way.
A sample of some of the topics of speeches: preppers/survivalists, publishing in the 21st Century, Islam and the Zero Aggression Principle, creepertarians, and transition towns. And some of the speeches, the speakers asked for audience participation. Porcfest is openly advertised as an informal event.There were panels where there were demonstrations of: making biltong (a cured meat originating from South Africa), CPR/AED, making chapstick, how to talk on talk radio, and encryption.
Unfortunately missing from this year was the “Soap Box Idol” and the “Roast Of ___” events. But that’s because nobody organized such an event! This is a do-it-yourself community and all that was needed for this kind of stuff is for somebody to step forward and choose to run such an event and bring the guests/speakers/panelists, set up signs, cover costs, do whatever needs to be done. People who wanted such an event to continue were free to step forward to volunteer to organize it. Sometimes you have to be the change you wish to see in the world (or week-long Free-Stater party in the woods).
Here’s a recording of the Soap Box Idol from 2011. The funny parts are not only what is spoken but what the judges have to say. People had 3 minutes to speak about anything and were scored by 3 judges. The “Roast Of” events were done in 2011 and 2012. First one, Stefan Molyneux was roasted and the year after that was Chris “Ron Paul’s Freaking Giant” Lawless.
The fact that people in charge of Porcfest were so laissez-faire about what kind of events could be held at Porcfest, seems to have resulted in such a wide variety of events. This is good!
I attended the Porcupine Freedom Festival, usually known as PorcFest. This is Porcfest XI. The event keeps getting bigger.
This an event that draws attention to the Free State Project. Many of the attendees are people who are natives in New Hampshire and are Free State Project sympathizers. Some are people who have already moved to New Hampshire for the Project. Some are people who have never lived in New Hampshire before. Finally, some are people who’ve never even been to New Hampshire! (I fall into that last group)The event was held at Roger’s Campground in Lancaster, NH. The White Mountains. The view of the stars at night, with no light pollution (no photos unfortunately), it was very nice. But enough about the location. This event lasted from Sunday June 22nd and ended the next Sunday. It was a week of fun!
One of the things that happens at PorcFest is appearance by some big-name celebrities (e.g. people who became famous before PorcFest was a thing) like Jeffrey Tucker and Nick Gillespie but this is not the focus of this series, this is my story, my first time in New Hampshire, and I’ve decided that a first-person narrative is much more fun.
Coming up, stories of poor trip planning, gov’t official hand-shaking, nipple-grabbing, gay-dancing, Bitcoin-accepting, Dogecoin-promoting, bigwig-speaking, anarcho-capitalist-associating, spiced rum-drinking, parchment paper-signing- Good time! Also stories about Mandatory Toothbrushing and shouting at an ATM.