Episode-888- Carla Gericke from the Free State Project

Carla Gericke - AKA Queen Quill at Porc Fest 2011

Carla Gericke - "Queen Quill" at Porc Fest 2011

Carla Gericke is also known as “Queen Quill” was born in the in the police state of South Africa and immigrated to California after winning a green card in a lottery.  She practiced law as in-house counsel at Fortune 500 companies in Silicon valley before redirecting her efforts to liberty activism and writing.

In 2008, Carla moved with her husband from New york City to New Hampshire.  In 2009-2012, Carla was the organizer of the Porcupine Freedom Festival, which grew significantly under her leadership.

When not wearing her Porcupine Crown, (in other words her day job), Carla is a Program Director for a NH based arts non profit company, where she also teaches writing.  Carla speaks and writes on liberty topics, and she is currently working on a book about the Free State Project.

She like cooking, traveling (less now that the TSA exists), yoga, keeping law enforcement accountable, voluntary monarchies and killing the occasional turkey with her bare hands.  We call her the Quill Queen because in addition to all of the above she is also the currently serving president of the Free State Project.

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25 Responses to Episode-888- Carla Gericke from the Free State Project

  1. Ayn Rand is even modern, compared with other people who talked about the oppressive government in America. Go back to Henry David Thoreau, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Lysander Spooner. These peeps were hundreds of years ahead of their time..

  2. great interview! unbelievable about what the police did.keep up the good work Carla!

  3. Patriot Warrior

    @ Jack, great interview. I have actually heard of Carla and her work through a close personal friend of mine living in New Hampshire, and from several New Hampshire Oath Keepers. Unfortunately, Carla’s experience with some of the corrupt police in that state is not an isolated incident. If you want to see another awesome example of an individual living in New Hampshire who is also fighting corrupt police officers, do a search on BRIAN BLACKDEN. I have been following Brian’s case and fight for a couple years now, and it now looks like some of the corrupt police officers involved in his case just might be indicted soon. Also, the New Hampshire Supreme Court recently accepted to hear one of his cases.

    Over the past couple of years, I have heard some real horror stories regarding both the New Hampshire state police and small town corrupt cops. If this Free State Project has any chance of succeeding, they will need to make it a priority to clean house of all of these imbedded corrupt cops in that state.

  4. Masshole here! Great interview. I plan on attending porcfest this year.

    There are a lot of liberty loving people in MA, especially in Western MA and the Merrimack Valley.

  5. I listened to this show and I get the gist of the Free State Project. I wish I could relocate to New Hampshire without having to relocate!

    However, just a bit of feedback for Carla when she is presenting the organization… Don’t lead off with a hot-button issue like marijuana. So much time was spent discussing that issue that it really tainted my initial impression of the Free State Project. Having listened to the entire interview, I know the organization is about so much more than legalizing pot. The first 15 minutes had me going though.

    On the subject of medical marijuana… Be careful what you wish for. Out here on the left coast, we have had medical marijuana laws since the late 1990’s. I believe the intent of that law has been lost with the abuse of that law. Anyone -wink- can go to their doctor -wink- with a medical condition -wink- to get a prescription -wink-.

    • Modern Survival

      @Marty your suggestion may be a good one but personally I don’t think marijuana should be illegal at all, period. The fact that our nation has made a plant illegal tells us how far our liberty has fallen over the years. I have no desire to smoke it at all, I don’t think doing so is a good idea but I can say that about a lot of things. Doesn’t mean the government needs to be in our face about it.

    • There would be no need to “abuse” stupid laws if the stupid laws didn’t exist in the first place.

      It’s an interesting assumption that a “law” somehow implies any sort of moral or ethical correctness.

      For the record, I got stoned once on accident (was offered laced snacks at a festival, didn’t know it), and would never do it again on purpose. I think it’s one of the biggest wastes of my life and time. However, I think it’s insane that we would violently take away the life and time of another person for choosing to use it on their own. If somebody wants to smoke in their own house, why not?

      No victim, no crime, bro.

      • Patriot Warrior

        @ Jack,

        There are actually a large number of current and retired law enforcement officers that know we lost the War on Drugs long ago, and they would rather spend their time going after real criminals. There is a national organization for those officers who want to legalize marijuana, and its called Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) — and I am a member.

        I don’t believe anyone should use marijuana, but if you do, its your business what you do in the privacy of your own home, and as long as your marijuana use doesn’t deprive anyone else of their constitutional rights.

        http://www.leap.cc/

  6. Hey Jack, I have to agree with Marty on this one. I agree with you that it probably should not be illegal, but this is not the issue you want to lead off with.
    (For the record, I have NEVER taking any illegal intoxicant, but I was a little drunk once. :-) On the other hand, I have had a lot of friends that spent so much time chasing intoxication that they forgot to have a life or ruined what life they had in making really stupid choices.)
    In the episode about sharing prepping with others, you talked about how we should ease a person into it, allow them to think their way into loving freedom, or loving gardening, or feeling the need to prepare for some small emergency.
    In the same way, you don’t want to alienate half of the audience that might be listening for the first time, if that is the first thing that they hear. If evangelism works, it is because you have a person hooked before you get to someplace where they are in “opposition”. I’m just saying…

    I would have brought that up toward the end and made a smaller deal of it as a part of looking for liberty, not because we want to smoke dope, but because we love freedom, even for people that want to get high if they so choose, because this is not the government’s role. Oh, by the way, if you ruin your life by choosing poorly, we won’t pay for it.

    • Modern Survival

      @Rick, actually I had not planned to even discuss it and was thinking wow we are early in the conversation for this, that is why I tried to mediate it and do some damage control about the medical aspects of it. Again though I don’t think this issue is really that radically divisive among most libertarian leaning people, even the ones that think it should remain illegal in all forms and all circumstances.

      I will be honest in my youth I did experiment and unlike a certain former president I won’t insult your intelligence by saying I didn’t inhale. Ironically at that time I thought pot should be illegal, now that I would never touch the stuff again, I don’t think it should be.

      I think the quickest way to defeat the cartels would be a well regulated and self funding decriminalization program for just about all the drugs.

  7. Having moved to NH with the Free State Project, I can tell you it is an incredible community. This coming weekend we are helping new movers unload the truck. I have done dozens of these move ins and every one is a thrill, meeting new people and gaining liberty one person at a time.

  8. Backwoods Engineer

    I really enjoyed this interview, despite some political incompatibilities with Carla. Her emphasis is (and should be) freedom from governmental interference, and I’m down with that. I have learned to take what I agree with from people, and try to downplay the points of disagreements, as long as that doesn’t compromise my own principles.

    It wouldn’t bother me if hemp was legal, but I think that a lot of people misjudge little-l libertarians, thinking that pot is their big issue. I know it’s not, and I also realize the “war on drugs” is being used to subvert the Constitution.

    Carla mentioned having anti-war speakers at PorcFest, and that would keep me from making the effort to go. I believe it is our nation’s right to engage in just war, to stop an enemy that would take our rights and our government should they win (e.g., Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, Soviet Union).

    I would probably agree with the anti-war folks, though, that given our silly rules of engagement in Iraq and Afghanistan, and our government’s overt intention to lose those conflicts, our troops should absolutely come home right now. I’d like to see them on the southern border.

    • Modern Survival

      @Backwoods so it is wrong to be “anti war”? See I think this is another growth opportunity for you if you will take it. Many people who are “anti war” completely agree with you when you say,

      “I believe it is our nation’s right to engage in just war, to stop an enemy that would take our rights and our government should they win.”

      They just

      1. Think it better damn well be the case that what you said is actually going on before we shoot or bomb anyone

      2. Know we have been falsely led into wars in the past (WWI with the Lusitania for example and the Gulf of Tonkin with Vietnam)

      Besides if you are not anti war, what are you pro war? Let me tell you most men that spend time in fox holes are eventually of the anti war persuasion. Summed up as no one hates war more than a solider.

      Yes there are some people that think we should lay down if attacked, they are the vast minority even among many in the anti war community. Ron Paul is anti war but wouldn’t get rid of the military or fail to use the military in a constitutional manner for defense. Anti war isn’t anti defense.

      I mean I am anti punching people in the face but if you try to hurt me, well I am willing to punch you in the face. Make sense? This is yet another component of the great lie of dichotomy. Honestly I would love to see you at Liberty Forum next year, you will find plenty of people to disagree with but I promise you won’t find people with more integrity. I would imagine in some instances your mind might change and in others you may stay steadfast but I bet you would develop tremendous personal appreciation and respect for anyone there you took the time to speak and listen to.

      I have personally seen what war does to people and a country. This nation hasn’t ever experienced it on our home soil in the lifetime of any living soul. It is a blessing but I personally think if we had seen it on our soil our taste for war would be quite a bit lower then it currently is.

      Talk radio wants you to think that every person who is anti war is some pinko commie kook. It just isn’t the case. I mean I am anti war and you seem to like me okay at least most of the time right?

      You know the first time I went to Lew Rockwell and saw anti war in the header it totally turned me off. I was willing to grow as a person though and now I understand that was in in perhaps 80% or better agreement even when I thought the same way you do about the term anti war.

  9. Great conversation. There was a question in there along the lines of, “but how do you know it will work?” There wasn’t a great answer, but a little background that should have been added I think: “The Free State Project” was the thesis work of a political scientist called Jason Sorens. He observed that having liberty-loving folks all spread around thinly through society definitely doesn’t work (look around, right?) So, he argued that the best chance for real liberty is to get all those people together, in a State where they can make real changes. Picking a State that’s already largely there (in comparison, anyway) just multiplies the positive impact. So, using that sciency-stuff he’s at least pre-qualified the idea as plausible.
    So, “will this work?” – Unknown. But we already know what doesn’t work, and this effort is probably the last best hope. Initial pre-project results look like it probably will, and they only have 1000-ish pre-movers – let’s see what happens when 20x that number of activists show up.
    Out of NH folks should also stay interested and supportive. When SHF governmentally, if FSP has worked and all the States other than NH collapse, then when the people in those other states go looking for how to set things back up again, in a way that works, they’re going to look to NH to learn how to do it right. So folks who care about liberty and well-functioning societies in the long term, even if they have no intention of moving to NH, ought to throw a coin in their bucket once in a while, because there might be some really good long-term benefits from the project for everybody, not just those in NH.

  10. Matthew in Gooseneck Ga

    Jack I was in same boat as you a few years ago. I went to Lew Rockwell.com and read an anti soldier piece. Being a former soldier I was upset. I did n ots go bac k
    to that website for two weeks…
    So yea I feel as Jack does anti war by not anti defense . It took a lot of reading and praying. But I understand now anti war does not mean anti troops.

  11. I think any time we ask the question, “are you pro-X or anti-X?” we are embracing the lie of dichotomy, as Jack put it the other day. Subjects such as war, defense, military are all far too complex and nuanced to be able to ever say Yes/No or Pro/Anti to any of them, in my opinion.

  12. Your comments and position on medical marijauna are only valid if it is treated with the same regulation as other medications. Here in Michigan where it has just been made legal. We now have an issue where the ” Medical marijuana ” supply houses have been caught supplying people without prescriptions from doctors as which is required by the state allowance.

    Just as I thouht would happen. The statute was pushed using the heart tugging excuse that the cancer ridden needed it to comfort their pains and nausea, of which I have full compasion for, but just made it easier for the pot head burn outs to gain access. If it is going to designated as a medicine then it should be dispensed through the pharmacy system not through strip mall store fronts.

    • Modern Survival

      @Darrell and you know about the illegal behavior how? I would guess that in the enforcement of the new law, law enforcement did it’s job and caught the offender, likely they lost their permit now, face jail or prison time and our out of business. The argument that you can’t decriminalize one behavior because it might lead to other violations is a straw man, in fact a gas soaked straw man holding a lit match.

      Secondly while I don’t use and don’t want to use I think there shouldn’t even be a law against marijuana. Making a plant illegal is not a hallmark of liberty. People on pot don’t generally cause an trouble, it is one of the most propagandized things on the planet. I have seen plenty of people start fights or wreck cars or beat their wives or end up in the hospital due to drinking to much. Haven’t really ever seen that happen to a guy on pot UNLESS he was also drinking.

      Third the problem with a general pharmacy for marijuana is it doesn’t really work that way. Different plants have different characteristics. Believe what you want but it does help a lot of people and they have to actually at times experiment with different blends to find what works best. Do people abuse the system, sure, do I care, not in the slightest. I care a lot more about the kids selling their pills to in school dealers for their ADD as those pills are nothing but legalized meth. I care more about the people killing themselves on oxycontin that they get from what you call “legitimate pharmacy system”.

      Really if you let go of personal bias you have to ask yourself why you should care if a pot head smokes pot any more than you care if Joe six pack pounds a few Old Mils after a long day at work.

      • Modern Survial

        Personal experience with pot heads in my neck of the woods shows that the peaceful
        pot head is a myth. Your straw man comment is as falacious as your belief in allowing another poor behavior just because other poor behaviors are currently sanctioned.
        People do not live in vaccuum where societies are concerned. I am want the government to leave me alone just as much as you do, but until the poor behaviored in our society can be prevented from picking my pocket through government taxation because they have had the conseqences of their poor behavior declared as a disability. I will continue to maintain my so called ” personal bias ” against it.

        With regards to the different blends. My wife has chronic health issues where the doctors had to work with her to get the proper medicine regiment down. The same can be done with pharmacy dispensed marijuana under a doctors care.

  13. Hey Darrell,

    Your tax dollars are paying for hundreds of thousands? millions? of inmates who are charged with a felony (ie: many many years in prison) for wanting to smoke themselves out. The actual damages caused by people who are high in free society could not possibly ever approach the cost we are not paying to jail people who want to lay around stoned. Yer math is faulty, bro.

  14. What is the FSP stance on smoking tobacco in public places?
    I agree that private clubs with voting memberships should have a choice, but I have more rights not to be around tobacco smoke then a smoker does to smoke in a public place.

  15. The only real reason I feel I will be living out my life here in Mass is that’s where all the high tech computer jobs are. If I get let go from one company, I can go work for another assuming the computer industry keeps going up and down. The Boston area has more high tech than most any other City in the US. That was more true years ago, but still seems to be the story in large part. You could sort of commute from southern NH into Mass. I have thought of moving closer to the NH boarder someday so I can be closer drive to the beach and the mountains. I am not sure I would want to retire in NH due to the high property taxes. I did enjoy the liberty fest and meeting Jack there and have always liked camping in NH.

    NH has a pretty big surf community. Check out Ralph’s surf blog in NH. Ralph is a vietnam vet and has been surfing NH for many years

    http://www.ralphspic.com/newsletter.html

    • That is a sad fact Surf. Ever think of starting a tech company up north? I know a lot of techs who would love to shorten their commute.