FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Frequently Asked Questions
About the Free State Project
Questions about Your FSP Membership? Visit the Community Center
Note: some of these questions are not necessarily asked "frequently", but they deal with issues we feel it is important to address up-front.WHO WHAT WHERE WHEN WHY HOW JOBS/HOUSING
WHO(back to top)
Q: Who is welcome to participate?
A: Anyone who agrees to the Statement of Intent which states that the maximum role of civil government [should be] the protection of citizens' rights to life, liberty, and property.
Beyond this, it is very difficult--if not impossible--to pigeonhole individual FSP participants' beliefs. Some FSP participants support policies such as abolition or reduction of income taxes, elimination of regulatory bureaucracies, repeal of most gun control laws, repeal of most drug prohibition laws, complete free trade, decentralization of government, and privatization of government service. People of this disposition may go by many names: "classical liberals" (not the same as modern liberals at all, but followers of Thomas Jefferson and similar thinkers), libertarians, paleoconservatives, constitutionalists, voluntarists, etc., etc.
Q: Are non-American citizens welcome?
A: Yes, if they are willing to undertake the move. Even if they cannot vote at first, they can assist the cause in other ways as foreign friends. Also note, that under NAFTA, Canadians with advanced degrees or specialized trades enjoy the right to become residents of the U.S.
Q: Is there an "age limit" to joining? Are retired people welcome? Are there any "good health" requirements?
A: All are welcome in the FSP. We already have members in a wide range of ages, and encourage those with life experience to join our efforts. We have no health requirements -- it's none of our business, and we appreciate any support we get from liberty-lovers in any stage of life. We do ask that you be at least 18 years of age to sign up.
Q: What kind of people are not welcome as members of the Free State Project?
A: Anyone who promotes violence, racial hatred, or bigotry is not welcome.
Q: I'm in the armed forces - how would I declare my move to the free state?
A: Active-duty personnel can select a "home of record." This home of record may be in any state, and you are allowed to vote in that state's elections by absentee ballot. However, you may not change your home of record after initial enlistment. If you re-enlist after leaving the military, you are allowed to change your home of record then. There are also regulations relating to travel while on leave. More info ...
Q: Are people from New Hampshire allowed to sign up, and will they count toward 20,000?
A: Our new supporters from New Hampshire will not count toward the 20,000 members, because our research on the effects of 20,000 activists assume that current in-state support is not sufficient. People from New Hampshire who signed up before the vote will still be considered as part of the 20,000, since they originally agreed to move to at least one other state, though they'll be only a small portion of our membership.
Although New Hampshire residents are not included in the member count, they are still encouraged to subscribe to our announcement list, participate in our communities and events, and network with fellow Free Staters. New Hampshire residents can now register officially as New Hampshire Free State Pioneers.
WHAT(back to top)
Q: Is the FSP a political organization?
A: Absolutely not. The Free State Project is a nonprofit corporation. We do not endorse candidates or legislation. The Free State Project's purpose is simply to get 20,000 liberty supporting individuals into a single state of the U.S. The Free State Project has no other purpose.
What happens next is up to those 20,000 people.
Q: Is the FSP part of the Libertarian Party?
A: No, the FSP is not affiliated with the Libertarian Party in any way. However, some FSP participants are also LP members. And for that reason, we also may do some recruiting and publicity at LP events.
Q: I love the idea of the FSP, but for practical reasons I just can't sign the Statement of Intent right now. I still want to be involved - do you still want me anyway?
A: Yes! You can still support us by signing up as a Friend of the FSP. Even if you are unable to commit to the move, we encourage and appreciate your help, participation in our forums, assistance in publicity, recruiting, research and all the other work to be done. For more ways to help, see our Volunteer Center page.
Q: Does the Free State Project promote secession?
A: No, the Free State Project does not promote secession.
Q: I'm mostly a libertarian, but I don't agree with [issue X]. What do you have to say about that?
A: We welcome all who love liberty. The FSP is not a lockstep movement, requiring all who join to subscribe to a long list of agreements on every point. There is no "Grand Platform". All we ask is that you agree that government's maximum role should be to help individuals defend themselves from force and fraud. We welcome you and support your desire to live according to your values. We ask only that you support others in their right to do the same.
HOW(back to top)
Q: The Statement of Intent says that I should "exert the fullest possible effort" toward the creation of a minimal-government society, but I have moral objections to voting. Would the FSP require me to vote?
A: The short answer is "no." "Possible" is to be defined by each individual for himself; that language in the Statement is intended to be a proud statement of courage, to inspire. Obviously, everyone who joins the FSP has a deep commitment to liberty, given the personal investments that are involved in the Project. Our job is not to assess or judge that commitment.
Q: Would your participants be under a legal contract (or at least, a moral contract) to stay for a designated length of time? If so, what is that length of time?
A: The Statement of Intent is not a legal contract, and moving takes place on the honor system. We do not require a commitment for a particular length of residency in the Free State. But we would hope and expect the participants would keep residency in the state for several years.
Q: Don't you think some people will back out when the time comes to move?
A: Perhaps. But not most. People who have signed up have already signaled their commitment to achieving liberty. Why would they back out just at the moment when our goal is in sight? If they value liberty enough to decide to move at one time, why would they not value liberty enough to move at a later time?
Q: How are decisions made in the FSP?
A: The largest and most important decision which state to move to was made by a vote of the membership, as outlined in the Participation Guidelines. For day-to-day management decisions, the Free State Project, Inc., is a private, non-profit corporation. Corporate decisions are ultimately made by the Board of Directors. The various Organizers, however, are empowered to make certain decisions in several areas such as research, technology, and publicity. They also make proposals for major decisions (those involving spending, for example) to the Board. We do our best to make decisions with input from the membership, and any change to the Project Guidelines allows any signed participant to opt out, ensuring that no participant is committed to a project different from what the participant signed up for. There are no changes to the Guidelines unless there is a definite consensus for the change following a long period of public comment; also, changes to the corporate bylaws, which include the Participation Guidelines, must be ratified by a unanimous vote of the Board. We do not anticipate any future changes to the Guidelines.
WHERE(back to top)
Q: Why is New Hampshire the state the FSP is moving to?
A: After obtaining 5,000 committed participants, they voted and chose New Hampshire. The vote was conducted in accordance with the Participation Guidelines; detailed results of the vote may be found here. The FSP membership selected New Hampshire because of its many political, economic, and cultural advantages, which can be seen in our NH Info pages. In addition, New Hampshire's low population ensures that each individual can have an effect on the political system.
Q: Are Project participants expected to move to a specific town or county in New Hampshire?
A: No. It is completely up to Free State Project participants and their families to decide where to live. Our NH Info pages provide some information on New Hampshire's localities to assist people in making that decision.
Note: It has come to the attention of the Free State Project (FSP) that some individuals or groups of individuals who may be participants of the FSP may be soliciting funds for business projects, including land development corporations or other entities, in New Hampshire. The FSP does not approve or sanction of any individual efforts. Anyone who enters into any such business arrangement is doing so at their own risk, with full knowledge that the Free State Project, Inc. does not and will not endorse any such ventures. (3/12/04)
WHEN(back to top)
Q: What is the time frame for the Free State Project?
A: The Participation Guidelines state that once we reach 20,000 participants, everyone has five years to move to New Hampshire. Participation Guidelines do not specify a time period for reaching 20,000.
Q: What will happen to the FSP after the move?
A: The Project itself will dissolve shortly after the five-year moving deadline, having accomplished its sole mission to recruit 20,000 liberty-lovers to move to one state. FSP, Inc. may remain in place to assist future free state movements, should they emerge, or to continue providing information to people wishing to move to New Hampshire.
Q: Why will this Project succeed where others have failed?
A: First, pro-limited-government activism at a national level does not work. And that realization has begun to sink in among people, and these people are now ready for an alternative like the FSP. Second, we are not asking for your money, just your signature - and eventually, of course, your following through on your word. (Of course you can donate your money to the Project to help us spread the word.) Third, we offer formal organization and a Statement of Intent. These devices are intended to get people committed to the Project. No more half-hearted suggestions with no follow-through. Fourth, we have chosen our state on the basis of carefully and rationally considered criteria. We'renot just saying: "Everyone come to where we live!" In fact, the leading strategists and researchers of the FSP are all from different states.
Q: Why does the FSP's logo have a porcupine?
A: When we started thinking about a logo for the FSP, the first suggestions centered around the Gadsden flag and the "Don't Tread on Me" snake. Then we thought we wanted something a little more original and PR-friendly, to emphasize the freshness of our approach, while still indicating the same idea. Porcupines are certainly cute and non-aggressive, but you don't want to step on them! Mary Lou Seymour first suggested the porcupine in our forum, and Joe Littlejohn was the designer of the present logo, which won over various other designs in a vote of visitors to the FSP website.
Jobs and Housing(back to top)
Q: Can you provide any help with finding a job in NH?
A: We have several resources in the Employment Information section on
our NH Info pages. Other ideas are to check out our
Businesses/Employment forum and to join/post to related Yahoo groups such
as FSP Business
Q: How about help with housing in NH?
A: You might want to check out the NH Housing/Realtors links on our NH
Info pages. Other ideas are to visit our Moving &
Housing forum and to join/post to related Yahoo groups such as Moving to NH and NH Real Estate.
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If you have more suggestions for items to be included in the FAQ, please do not hesitate to email us at email@example.com.