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Tampa Poised to be the Woodstock of the Freedom Movement!

While I regret not being able to be there myself, I’m positive and excited about the potential for major gains in awareness the liberty movement has this coming week in Tampa. At this point many more people than we’ve seen in the past are waking up to the scam that’s been foisted on them for so many years and are paying attention to the fact that the Republican National Convention is yet another rigged game to perpetuate the same old statist paradigm that minimizes individuals while glorifying the Almighty State.

The liberty movement activists are using this to best demonstrate just how irrelevant our oppressive government is by holding their own events at the same time the freak show of the convention proceeds, exemplifying and promoting the concepts of liberty that Ron Paul’s efforts have helped make so popular…peaceful voluntary action as a vastly superior alternative to coerced government scheming, the rule of law rather than men, the benefits of a noninterventionist foreign policy versus the insanity of perpetual war the military/industrial complex is constantly promoting, and on and on.

Freedom is infectious, and once people begin to grasp the concept they almost invariably find themselves wanting more. Events like PAUL festival will be there to help them in their quest, artists like Tatiana Moroz, Jordan Page, Rebel Inc. and many more will be there to help spread the word, and the many liberty lovers from every walk of life will be there…all of them making the very visible stand against the tyrannical police state that aims to dominate everyone with fear, control of the economy with their corrupt corporate state, and the threat of violence against anyone who objects to their crimes. The RNC is shaping up to be just a marker around which the real discussions about freedom will be going on, and since the Establishment has so marginalized Dr. Paul and his message within the GOP the liberty movement is prepared to move on without him if need be, though with acknowledgement and thanks for his many years of consistent promotion of real freedom. He’s been the first one to say all along that the movement isn’t dependent on him or any one man, and the activists in Tampa are proof of that.

Sure, there’s a small possibility Ron Paul could pull a Grover Cleveland and secure the GOP nomination, but if not I don’t believe any of his real supporters will see any reason to assist the phony Romney, as I discussed in this recent ADH piece. He and Obama are cut from the same cloth and are bought and paid for by the same masters in the oligarchy of banksters that have done so much damage to the American economy. Just because you’re in Las Vegas, you do NOT have to gamble, especially if there are only two casinos and both are completely rigged, no, you refuse consent and walk away, just as the activists in Florida will be doing this week.

My friend and fellow liberty lover Adam House will be doing much the same, as he informed me in a recent phone conversation. Adam, for anyone not familiar with him, is one of the founders of the Combat Veterans for Ron Paul who’s been journeying to Tampa since the beginning of August, mostly on foot. The original plan was for the various veterans for Ron Paul march on the RNC in a show of solidarity with Dr. Paul and the message of liberty, but since those in charge of the convention have shown their disdain for both, Adam and CVRP members there plan to join with other liberty minded veterans in their participation in other, more effective activities, including helping to feed and clothe any homeless veterans they encounter. Adam’s kept a video log of his travels in his Liberty Tour to Tampa, which you can see at the CVRP site or on his YouTube channel. My thanks to Adam…this has turned into quite the odyssey and will certainly be a central focus of any writing on the subject I do.

Meanwhile, I’m still doing what I can to get this fundraiser rolling again. There’s a few months left until the election and I’d really like to be out in public when it happens. The concerns I voiced in my last entry are as strong or even stronger in my mind since it’s not pleasant to be stuck in one spot as the world outside grows stranger and more dangerous. Just this week retired Marine Brandon Raub was kidnapped from his home and placed in a mental institution because some of his Facebook posts expressing his anger at the government’s complicity in America’s ruination alarmed some of the snoops. That hits a bit too close to home for me…I too post on Facebook, this blog and criticize the government in my articles for the American Daily Herald. As it turns out, Brandon also created content for the same Don’t Tread On Me site operated by Chris Duane that I’ve published essays on. That’s a pretty unpleasant reminder of my vulnerability and I hope my friends out there will help me finish my personal liberty quest!

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Empowerment And Prepping

One thing that’s been a recurring annoyance over the past couple of years has been the lack of a good knife around the house. I used to have a nice Benchmade Elishewitz Stryker but it magically disappeared while we had some people ‘helping’ us declutter the garage.

Benchmades aren’t cheap. That Stryker cost upwards of $150 back in 2000 and on my limited disability income I can’t just throw that kind of money at any one item. Ah, but the world has come a long ways since then. Benchmades are still justifiably pricy, but you can do well if you’re a careful shopper and don’t have to have fancy carbon fiber G-10 handles and titanium liners.

A bit of shopping and cross referencing turned these three up that have been added to my toolbox, a SOG Aegis AE-04 tanto point knife, spring assist opening and very lightweight…it uses no liners at all! It’s clipped to my shoulder bag and should be able to cover any light to medium duty tasks. $60 shipped from Amazon and I had a knife as good or better in most ways than my departed Benchmade.

I also wanted a more solid heavy duty piece with a more utilitarian blade, and the SOG Vulcan VL-01 fit the bill nicely. With a Japanese supersteel san mai blade, steel liners, and a steel arc lock tested to 1000 pounds of pressure, it’s smooth as silk and needs no spring assist. With an MSRP of $184 and a normal selling price of over $100, I thought I’d be waiting on the acquisition of one of these for a while…until I noticed one of those eBay consignment sellers offering one from an estate that I sniped for a mere $61.

Last was a pure fun indulgence. A video in my YouTube subscriptions showed up recently from user ‘nutnfancy’ where he’s absolutely raving about the Taiwanese Lightning OTF (out the front) automatic knife. Not only did he compare it favorably to auto knives in the $200-$300 range, he demonstrated various cutting tasks and flawless deployment and stowage of the blade.

I’m glad I ordered two; my mom saw mine and grabbed it covetously right away. Yeah, it’s technically a switchblade but when you have limited and/or weak hand use, a knife that can be opened and closed with the slide of the ramped control lever’s a huge benefit.

There was a nice side effect to all this, I’m rediscovering that horse trading and handling weapons is a mighty empowering thing! Does that mean I’m looking for some conflict to have an excuse to stick somebody with one of these? Don’t be ridiculous. Like firearms, I hope I never have to use any tool I own in self defense…doubly so with bladed weapons and me in a power wheelchair. It’s just a good feeling being able to have more tools at hand when I need them.

One other benefit to these Lightning auto knives…right now they’re dirt cheap (when not sold out) at only $30 apiece. I’ve spent my fun money for the month, but I plan in to lay in a pile of these in the near future, after allowing some budget in August if my friends can get me to Tampa…you bet I’m still keen to get there if I can! From a prepping standpoint these could be worth their weight in platinum in a SHTF situation with those who didn’t bother to lay in supplies suddenly finding themselves with an urgent need for a tool or weapon like these.

Besides, nutnfancy’s right…they are a blast to just play with!

Back in the world, the Indiegogo campaign continues and will continue until its goal is met. I know that first campaign’s deadline was a tactical error since so many people seem to assume I’d simply abandon the project after the first try didn’t succeed. The idea that I’d give up, with over $10,000 now raised, all those great endorsement videos from my friends helping raise awareness and backup for the project, and my life ahead of me once I get free is crazy!

Let there be no mistake: I’M IN THIS UNTIL IT SUCCEEDS…I’M CONTINUING THIS FUNDRAISER UNTIL IT’S DONE!

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Okay, Fun’s Fun, But…

Sigh…let’s see, into 3 years of homebound captivity and it’s been an absolutely gorgeous day out there…

And I see that my favorite liberty fan, Dr. Paul is drawing crowds pushing 10,000 to hear him speak…

All right, joke’s over! Guys? Guys…?

Sorry, but I’m feeling a bit like the Count of Monte Cristo here!

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Another Step Closer

As I mentioned in my last post, I arranged for Freedom Motors, the outfit that performs the X-WAV conversion on vehicles including the Honda Element I own, to send a sales rep in a converted Element to my home so I could look it over and interact with it, necessary to be absolutely sure it’s the right vehicle for me with my Quantum 614 power wheelchair.

Yesterday afternoon, right on schedule, a bright green Element festooned with Freedom Motors advertising pulled into my driveway. Andrew, the pleasant representative from FMI driving her, removed the right front seat and readied the little SUV for me to try.

I was delighted to find I could drive my power chair aboard, rotate it and be ready to go on my first try. I’d had a slight concern that my 614 with its long wheelbase might have difficulty negotiating the Element’s cabin, but my worries proved groundless, and the automated ramp and doors closed with no trouble at all.

I haven’t driven it yet, but the few questions I had have been answered. Rather than using the wheelchair in the left front drivers’ position, I’ll park it on the right side, raise the chair’s left hand armrest, and slide the few inches into the driver’s seat. Owing to my limbs’ weakness, this will take some practice, but as you’ll see in the video of the demonstration I’ve posted, there are no obstructions to hinder me and the action is similar to the sideways movements I use daily to position myself and transfer from my bed to and from my wheelchair. The only additional equipment I might need is a smooth transfer board to slide on if any difficulties arise, but I doubt even that will be needed.

It is possible to use the wheelchair to drive from, but it turns out that’s an additional $2500 modification for the device that secures the chair to be fitted and installed, and would require my going to Michigan for the fitting, since every chair requires individual attention to assure it’s exactly right for the user. No, thanks…I’ll slide over!

The one additional expense I hadn’t counted on is the relocation of the manual emergency brake, which is currently on the floor and very much in the way when I’d be transferring. Apart from relocating it, the brake will be actuated by a solenoid operated by a pushbutton, so I won’t have to worry whether I’ll have the hand strength to operate it. The $650 expense is a minor issue; if once the fundraising goal is met I come up short by that amount I can easily finance it if need be.

I’m excited, the X-WAV is everything I thought it would be, and the electric automated ramp and doors mean I won’t have any trouble trying to operate them with a dominant left hand and arm that have lost most of their function.

Well…all systems are go. I can proceed full speed ahead with fundraising for my cause with no lingering worries that this is just the right vehicle to regain my mobility.

I’m dreaming of the day when I can safely drive again without the hazard of falling that I still face every time I have to go out to get to a doctor’s appointment, and that keeps me from driving at all for any other purpose than that. Being able to take my wheelchair with me will restore so much of my life that was taken away when MS disabled me to this point, from being able to move about a park, shop at a store or dine out at a restaurant. I’ll be able to get out in public to cover events for the essays I write for the American Daily Herald, interview members of the public along with politicians and officials, and best of all, help Dr. Ron Paul’s campaign for the 2012 presidential election…IF I can get some assistance to publicize this project and get the word out to all those people I know are out there ready and willing to contribute the small amounts that in large enough numbers will Get Glenn Mobile!

Please help speed that day’s arrival by donating what you can and telling the people in your life…friends, family, coworkers…about this project. We’ve come a long way since this blog began in August, and there’s still a way to go, but with your assistance I’m confident that it will come sooner rather than later.

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