Why I’m a Republican

@freenoahjLast week I had the pleasure of meeting a couple of social justice advocates at my workplace. My boss, wanting to build relationships let them know that: “Noah is really in to politics too.”

“Oy,” I thought, “why did you have to say that!?”

“Oh, wow, what organizations are you involved with?” they asked.

My fear was immediately realized. After fumbling over my tongue for awhile I began to couch my answer with phrases like: “Well, I’m not your typical…”, “If I tell you, just hear me out for a minute…”, “I’m a reformer and my activism is more internal.”

It’s clear; my Republicanism does not stand at the forefront of my identity. Being in Los Angeles (especially as a Black man) saying, “I’m Republican.” is a declaration of war. I might as well say, “I’m a Klansman.” in certain circles. Rand Paul was right, “The Republican brand sucks!”

I went on to explain to my new Leftist friends that I wasn’t a “status-quo Republican” but was part of the “civil liberties wing of the Party”; an outsider working with anyone on the political spectrum where the advance of liberty brought us together. I told them how lacRLC has worked closely with the ACLU against indefinite detention (NDAA 2012) and LAPD drones. I concluded by reassuring them that I often get along with leftist better than many people within the GOP.

After all this, how should I answer the question of why am I a Republican? Honestly, I wouldn’t be a Republican but for the RLC. I like what others have said, that the RLC exists to introduce the Republican platform to the Republican Party. I stand with the platform that supported sound money, civil rights, individual responsibility and freedom of association. The Party that opposed an aggressive foreign policy but stood for the freedoms of  citizens here at home; the Republican platform that defended the entrepreneur as well as the disenfranchised. These truly are the rightful positions of the Republican Party and I am proudly working to advance these positions.

But I can’t just look to the past because human understanding of freedom has expanded from age to age. The fight for freedom of the 20th century is not the same fight here today.  But how do we take the principles of yesterday’s freedom fighters to defy the tyranny of today? Together with my friends in the lacRLC, I examine the past to carry forward the greater tradition of securing freedom and opportunity for all.

I believe that we are not just “the future of the Republican Party”, the Liberty Caucus and its positions have taken prominent place in the political discourse. The maturation of Ron Paul 2008 sign-waivers has born the fruit of success. We are no longer outsiders but a well organized and sizable force in the political and cultural spheres of the U.S.  It’s an exciting time to be a so-called “Liberty Republican”.

My mother raised me with a memorable gem, “You can’t have a mutiny if you ain’t on the ship.” In a nation where two parties comprise the totality of reputable political discourse one has the choice either to ignore or to participate in the system. I have decided to participate so I can have my mutiny (nonviolently, in accord with the nonaggression principle, of course!).

If you are in the Los Angeles area, I encourage you to join us in this endeavor to reclaim the Republican Party for Liberty!

January Meeting

Martin Luther King Jr. on Injustice
We are hosting our next meeting on Sunday, January 18th at 3:00pm at Strive, a mini-campus for inner city children, located at 9124 S. Main Street in Los Angeles.

We’re meeting in South L.A. on the weekend of Martin Luther King Day to discuss the civil rights issues of our day.


Share and “thumbs up” our announcement on YouTube

Voter Guide for November 4, 2014

RLCCA Voter Guide November 2014 [PDF]

The Republican Liberty Caucus of California (RLCCA) has released its November 4, 2014 mid-term endorsements and the L.A. County chapter stands with them. Click above for the guide, or if you’re averse to PDF files, read ahead:

Vote for Art Alas – 32nd Congressional District (San Gabriel Valley, El Monte, Covina) http://electalas.com
Vote for Matthew Munson – 20th Senate District (San Fernando Valley, Pomona) http://munsoncampaign.org
Vote for Zachary Taylor – 46th Assembly District (Thousand Oaks) http://electzacharytaylor.com

Vote NO on Proposition 1 – Water Quality, Support, and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014
This measure would authorize the state to borrow $7.1 billion for an assortment of water infrastructure projects. While the ongoing drought demonstrates the shortcomings of California’s current water infrastructure, adding billions more to California’s existing $300 billion state debt is not the right answer. The work proposed in Prop 1 should have been paid for on an ongoing basis out of the fees families, farmers, and businesses pay for the water they use. A vote for Prop 1 is a vote to bail out Sacramento for squandering this money.

Vote NO on Proposition 2 – Budget Stabilization Account
Planning a small surplus into the state budget during good years in order to cover shortfalls in bad years is an appealing idea, but Prop 2 is not the way to do it. Until California’s state debt is paid off, dipping into a reserve fund is equivalent to borrowing money, and Prop 2 gives the governor the unilateral authority to do so. In addition, Prop 2 also contains troubling provisions micromanaging school districts and incentivizing them to overspend in order to avoid having their local budget reserve funds confiscated by Sacramento.

Vote NO on Proposition 45 – Health Insurance Rate Change
This measure would put the state’s Insurance Commissioner in charge of approving or rejecting any proposed rate change in individual or small group health insurance premiums and would limit the ability of providers of other types of insurance to price according to the estimated risk of a particular policyholder. Both are terrible ideas. Insurance only works when prices are set appropriately with regards to estimated risk, and price fixing in any market tends to break the improper functioning of the market and create shortages.

Vote NO on Proposition 46 – Drug and Alcohol Testing of Doctors
This measure would require doctors to be regularly tested for drugs and alcohol. Pervasive drug and alcohol tests are expensive, intrusive, and unreliable; people who are abusing drugs can often easily fool the tests, while people who are not may test positive anyway. The state should stay out of the matter, give doctors the same presumption of innocence we give to the rest of the population, and trust hospitals to take appropriate measures to discipline their own employees.

Vote YES on Proposition 47 – Criminal Sentences, Misdemeanor Penalties
California has a number of crimes on the book that prosecutors can charge as either felonies or misdemeanors. These crimes include petty theft and various nonviolent drug offenses. Prop 47 would require prosecutors to charge those specific crimes as misdemeanors instead of felonies except when the defendant has prior convictions for violent or serious felonies, and would commute the sentences of current inmates serving felony sentences for those crimes who cannot be shown to present an unreasonable public safety risk. This would do better justice by not over-sentencing minor offenders, save taxpayer money, and keep prison space open for truly dangerous criminals.

Vote YES on Proposition 48 – Indian Gaming
Compacts This measure ratifies certain tribal gaming compacts already approved by the legislature, in particular allowing the North Fork Tribe to build and operate a casino in Mandera county. The RLCCA supports the sovereign rights of the tribes, as well as the rights of all people to buy and sell legitimate goods and services, including gaming.

Action Day for Art Alas – Saturday October 4th

10639509_10152386810820959_5150559336568880473_nThe LA Times just wrote an article that said the Republican Party is nearly extinct in Los Angeles. We beg to differ. Join the Los Angeles County Republican Liberty Caucus and all of the young, energetic Team Art volunteers on Saturday, October 4th as we hit the streets for Art Alas and the message of liberty! This is exactly one month before the election and we are expecting a big turnout. Everyone is invited!

Can’t make it on the 4th? The campaign headquarters is open 7 days a week so come on over whenever you can to see how you can help.

Campaign headquarters address: 354 E. Rowland St., Covina, 91723
Like Art’s Facebook page for more info: https://www.facebook.com/ElectAlas
And RSVP on the Facebook event HERE

Video-Photo Essay: Glenn Beck Meets “Liberty Kids” of LA County Republican Liberty Caucus

UPDATED w/ more juicy photos and video below!

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By now, everyone has read the “Liberty Kids” article published by Reuters and carried by the Drudge Report and countless other outlets. No, no, actually we’re the Los Angeles County Republican Liberty Cau– OK, so people in media just like “Liberty Kids” better. We can deal with that.

So here’s the photo essay of how Amir Zendehnam (secretary), Noah Johnson (treasurer), and this post’s author Nick Hankoff (chair) reached true stardom and received Hollywood treatment in Texas, home of The Glenn Beck Program on The Blaze.

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When I received the call from the producer, his first words were, “Is this Nick Hankoff?”
“Now listen,” I said, “the Republican National Committee isn’t getting a dime so stop call-”
“No, I’m calling from The Blaze. Glenn Beck wants to have you and a couple of your friends on the program to talk about what’s happening out in L.A. We’d fly you in to Dallas and set you up in a hotel and fly you back the next day. Sound good?”
“Free BBQ sounds good.”
“No.”
“JUST KIDDING! I LOVED GLENN BECK’S RESPONSE TO THE BORDER REFUGEE CRISIS! CAN’T WAIT TO MEET HIM! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!”

So I called Noah and Amir. Next thing you know, we’re on our way.

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The three of us didn’t know what Glenn Beck was going to ask. We quizzed each other on Rothbardian ethics until we nearly initiated aggression on ourselves. To relieve the anxiety, we decided to get our faces and hair did. The closest salon we found was conveniently located inside the state-of-the-art studios of The Blaze.

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We felt and looked much better!


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The rest is history. Check out The Blaze’s coverage of our appearance with more video clips here. Glenn Beck and his team made us feel right at home. Seriously, they rock. Freedom is known to bring people together, and we hope it brings us back to Dallas for a longer visit next time.

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UPDATE

The obligatory BBQ photo/video. Thank you Hard Eights. Go there and you’ll be licking the toothpicks on their bacon-wrapped chicken jalapeno poppers.

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Cheers from Dallas to still-the-best liberty movement in the country, Los Angeles County.
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BIG Announcement – LACRLC Does Dallas

The Board of the Los Angeles County Republican Liberty Caucus is flying to Dallas, Texas. Unlike many other Californians, we promise we’ll be back! Chairman Nick Hankoff, Treasurer Noah Johnson and Secretary Amir Zendehnam have been invited to be guests on The Glenn Beck Program. We will be discussing the future of the Republican Party, the Liberty Movement and much more!

Watch us live on Wednesday, September 3 at 2pm PST/4pm CT here: The Glenn Beck Program

LACRLC going viral?

This past Sunday, August 24, the Board of LACRLC, Nick Hankoff (Chair), Noah Johnson (Treasurer), and Amir Zendehnam (Secretary) joined a Hangout hosted by Melinda McCrady of Liberty on the Rocks. We talked about the “Liberty Kids” article, our shot heard ’round the world.
Then on Tuesday morning Amir joined the Armstrong & Getty Show, one of the funniest news talk shows in California. How is the “battle of the soul” for the GOP going?
Check out both media appearances below:

Supplant the Fed! – Bitcoin & Liberty

I remember the energy in the air during Ron Paul’s huge rally at UCLA during the 2012 Presidential primary. The line was nearly a mile long, and once the doors closed at full capacity many students climbed trees to see the Texas Congressman discuss the principles liberty and free market economics. I can hear it even now; at his first mention of The Federal Reserve the crowd immediately began to chant in thunderous unison, “End the Fed! End the Fed! End the Fed!”  Ron looked up at 7,000+ onlookers, gave his characteristic chuckle and smiled saying, “You already know my speech! Yeah, End the Fed!”  “End the Fed” became the rallying cry of the American Liberty Movement.  The Fed’s control of monetary policy – interest rates, business cycle, the money supply, etc. have been condemned as the root of all that is evil in the American Empire.



Now in 2014, many liberty activists have evolved from a focus on ending the Fed to an emphasis on supplanting it. How unfortunate “Supplant the Fed” doesn’t have that same nice ring to it! As email has disrupted the state’s monopoly on message delivery, the decentralized, peer to peer, digital currency Bitcoin offers even more disruptive potential in the global monetary system. With Bitcoin, individuals have the power to transfer value across the globe at lightning speed without government or corporate intermediaries. The implications of just this one promise of Bitcoin are beyond the scope of this post but rest assured the technology is a big win for human freedom world wide.
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The Republican Liberty Caucus encourages innovative, free-market solutions to the inefficiencies and injustices of government institutions. While governments do so much to destroy so many sectors of our lives – (the financial system, the educational system, the transportation system, etc.) the people rise up and create peaceful solutions! So go grab a ride with Lyft to stay in a room using Airbnb, and go buy a beer with your Bitcoin! We are proud to accept Bitcoin donations and encourage our members to educate themselves about this new technology.*

*Disclaimer: None of the above should not be construed as financial advice.  Bitcoin is a risky investment and before spending a penny of your hard earned Federal Reserve Notes you are encouraged to do your own research and seek the advice of experienced financial advisors and technologists.

 

‘Liberty Kids’ shake up L.A. Republican Party, look to other states

Last month in July we had one of our biggest meetings to date. Reuters journalist Sharon Bernstein came to see what the Los Angeles County Republican Liberty Caucus was all about and wrote a piece on the activism the “Liberty Kids” as she called us, are accomplishing in Southern California. And though there was some conjecture in the piece, it is a great representation of what is to come with the future of the Republican Party!


(Reuters) – Amir Zendehnam passionately supports marijuana legalization, same-sex marriage, abortion rights and the Republican Party.

He is not alone. The 26-year-old aspiring restaurateur and chairman of the party’s West Los Angeles central committee is one of a raft of ethnically diverse young libertarians who hold seats in L.A. County’s huge GOP apparatus, injecting youthful energy into its operations at a time when the state’s Republican Party is nearly moribund.

After winning control the executive board of the Los Angeles County Republican Party in December 2012, the “Liberty Kids,” as they call themselves, are seeing the fruits of their activism. This year one of their own is running as the Republican nominee for Congress from the San Gabriel Valley, with Zendehnam serving as policy adviser.

The Liberty Kids are challenging the party’s social conservatives and are drawing the attention of Democrats, who see liberal youth as part of their base. And in what could be a harbinger for the GOP, they have begun campaigning in other states, aiming to increase their influence beyond California.

“I want you to look around the room,” Zendehnam said at a meeting last week, “because this is what the face of the Republican Party is going to look like.”


Click this link to read the entire article: http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/08/06/us-usa-california-republicans-idUSKBN0G522C20140806

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