Iran

By Greg Samples

8/14/2018

It is time that the American people know the truth about what the United States government has done to Iran, and change the policy. Electing a Democrat or a Republican will result in the same immoral policy that has been pursued for the last 65 years.

At the behest of British oil companies, the CIA overthrew the democratically elected government of Iran in 1953 and installed the Shah, a dictator who brutalized the country until he was overthrown by revolution in 1979. Unfortunately, instead of reinstating their democracy, a theocracy was imposed upon the Iranian people. Now, the US government is still trying to force Iran to bow to its will by imposing economic sanctions upon them. This is morally wrong.

Incredibly, both the Democrat and Republican nominees for Congress in the 2nd District STILL have no comments on their web sites about US foreign policy.

Citizens United

By Greg Samples

8/13/2018

"The Supreme Court decision in Citizens United opened the flood gates for corporate money. It threatens the democratic process, and that decision should be overturned." -Renee Hoyos

This is evidence that Ms Hoyos either does not endorse, or does not understand, the First Amendment:
"Congress shall make no law ... abridging ... the RIGHT of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

National Debt

By Greg Samples

7/8/2018

"We need to start focusing on the real issues like paying down our debt, building the wall, and keeping our country safe." -Tim Burchett

People who talk about paying down the debt are either clueless about its nature, or are conning you. The only way to address the debt issue is to return to a constitutional asset based currency. No other solution is viable. Even reducing the debt means a reduction in the money supply, which means a recession.

"If all the bank loans were paid, no one could have a bank deposit, and there would not be a dollar of coin or currency in circulation. This is a staggering thought. We are completely dependent on the commercial Banks. Someone has to borrow every dollar we have in circulation, cash or credit. If the Banks create ample synthetic money we are prosperous; if not, we starve. We are absolutely without a permanent money system. When one gets a complete grasp of the picture, the tragic absurdity of our hopeless position is almost incredible, but there it is. It is the most important subject intelligent persons can investigate and reflect upon. It is so important that our present civilization may collapse unless it becomes widely understood and the defects remedied very soon." -Robert Hemphill, former Credit Manager, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta (in testimony before the U.S. Senate in 1947)

Pork

By Greg Samples

6/25/2018

"Come and meet candidate for Congress, Jimmy Matlock, in Farragut and learn about his run for Congress to put East Tennessee First!" -Matlock campaign ad.

This is the kind of rhetoric and mentality that has helped create the problems we now experience. Representatives that think their district has some priority over the rest of the country and seek benefits for their district merely create a race to bankruptcy, trying to bring home the most pork. What we need is a Congress that applies the principles of freedom and justice to everything they do, and not one that buys votes with pork.

Separating Children

By Greg Samples

6/17/2018

"Explain this to me. When Americans break the law, they’re imprisoned and separated from their children. So why do liberals think that when illegal immigrants break the law, they’re somehow more privileged than Americans? There’s an extremely simple solution to this problem- Don’t break the law. Regardless of where you’re from, I don’t want any parent separated from their child, so quit breaking the law! Children deserve better than a culture of lawlessness that creates havoc in their lives." -Jimmy Matlock

It is disheartening to find that a person elected to the Tennessee state legislature could have such a callous opinion about the welfare of children. I invite Mr. Matlock to stand facing southward at the Rio Grande and look behind him at the shimmering skyscrapers of El Paso, then at the cardboard homes across the river in Ciudad Juárez before him, and tell me that if he lived there, he would not do everything in his power to make a better life for his children.

But let’s examine all the laws being violated here. Are the immigrants who are arrested getting due process? Are they getting access to an attorney? The 6th Amendment guarantee of a right to counsel applies to "all criminal prosecutions", not just Americans. Are they allowed to seek bail? Is the concept of presumed innocence being applied until the trial? It would seem Mr. Matlock may be selective in his desire to follow the law.

Moreover, this is a manufactured crisis. Immigrants, regardless of legal status, do not cost Americans jobs. More people create more demand which creates more jobs. If we concentrate on re-establishing a free market economy with a sound currency, all immigration issues become moot.

Affordable Care Act

By Greg Samples

6/9/2018

"I maintain that ... the individual mandate and pre-existing protections be restored and defended. Affordable, accessible healthcare is one of the most important problems we face here in East Tennessee" -Joshua Williams

"We need to be striving to make the ACA work, not trying to dismantle healthcare." -Renee Hoyos

As many people experienced here in East Tennessee, the Affordable Care Act made health care costs go up, just as it did in 44 of 50 states. This is simple economics. When the demand for a product goes up without a corresponding increase in supply (there was not a sudden increase in the number of doctors and nurses in the US), one of two things must happen, if not both. Either the price goes up, or the quality goes down. Hospitals now put pressure on doctors to see more and more patients, which reduces the amount of time available for each. Only a return to a free market in the health care industry will result in the best product for the best price.

Term Limits

By Greg Samples

6/9/2018

"It’s time to shake up Washington, and send some fresh faces to fight with President Trump. Congressman Burchett will work to enact term limits, and signed the Term Limit Pledge." -Tim Burchett

Term limits sounds like a good idea but it will not solve our problems. The power brokers of the two largest parties would continue to hand pick their candidates. Only when liberty and justice return to the hearts and minds of the electorate will America return to its proper path. To do that we have to look for candidates who not only understand justice, but will actively defend it. I am the only candidate in this race that meets that criteria.

Tariffs

By Greg Samples

6/5/2018

"I don’t always agree with Senator Corker, but he points out some of the abuses of power demonstrated by this administration. These tariffs could have negative impacts on the east Tennessee economy, and our workers deserve better." -Renee Hoyos

The solution is simple. The Constitution firmly puts the power of taxation in the hands of Congress. But a weak Congress has abdicated this responsibility and given it to the President. Congress needs to strip the presidency of all extra-constitutional power.

Foreign Meddling

By Greg Samples

5/30/2018

"Working to protect American interests is the job of a president." -Renee Hoyos

It is a sign of the times when virtually all mainstream politicians think this way. The job of the president, as specified in the Constitution, is to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed". It is not the job of the American president to protect the interests of corporations abroad. That is beyond the jurisdiction of the American government. Moreover, protecting the interest of American corporations abroad is often in conflict with the interests of the American people. It leads to military involvement, war, and economic drain. Members of Congress who think this way have abdicated their responsibility on the question of war and peace. This quote may seem like an unimportant, innocuous statement, but in reality it is the manifestation of exactly what Benito Mussolini had in mind when he said, "Fascism should more appropriately be called Corporatism because it is a merger of State and corporate power."

Student Loans

By Greg Samples

5/30/2018

"Throughout May students graduated from college, many with significant debt that will burden them for years. Congress controls some loan rates, and I don’t believe those rates should fluctuate or be too high. As a member of Congress, I would work to lower those rates and to influence private lenders to limit rates on college loans." -Renee Hoyos

It is amazing that we never seem to learn our lessons. Just 10 years past the most devastating economic crisis since 1929, there are those who clamor for more economic interference. Some economists have predicted that when the student loan bubble bursts (1/6th of the economy) it will cause an even greater crisis than the housing bubble crash of 2008. Restricting rates will merely make that crisis come sooner and harder.

When I began my freshman year at the University of Tennessee in 1968, the annual cost of attendance was $450. Today, that figure is around $17,000. This is much greater than the inflation rate across the entire economy, and the main cause is government interference in the market place, just as Ms Hoyos is suggesting here.

We MUST begin electing legislators who understand economics.

The Wall

By Greg Samples

5/28/2018

"So proud to be standing with President Donald Trump here in Tennessee! I’m ready and fired up to build the wall" - Jimmy Matlock

It is beyond irony that the same people who cheered when President Reagan said, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down that wall", are so anxious to build one here in the US. Immigrants, regardless of their legal status, are not the problem. They do not cost Americans jobs. More people create more demand which creates more jobs. If we concentrate on re-establishing a free market economy with a sound currency, all immigration issues become moot.

Middle Class

By Greg Samples

5/27/2018

"Some Democrats have said that the recent tax bill is now settled law and we should just move on, but I disagree. I can't wait for the chance to run against Mr. Burchett or Mr. Matlock and tell him face-to-face that I’ll fight to repeal this law - and replace it with tax reforms that TRULY give tax relief to the middle class." - Joshua Williams

I agree with Mr. Williams here. The 16th Amendment should be repealed. (That is what he meant, isn't it? ) That's the only way middle class Americans will ever get tax relief, because they are not represented by lobbyist like the upper income individuals, and they are not pandered to by politicians like lower income individuals.

Labor Rights

By Greg Samples

5/22/2018

"I’m deeply disappointed in the Supreme Court’s decision yesterday to restrict class-action lawsuits for federal labor violations. Employers should not have the right to deny workers their rights as a condition of employment." -Renee Hoyos

Greg Samples response: The 7th Amendment states: "In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law." While we absolutely have the right to demand a jury trial in a civil suit, we also have the right to waive it, which is what we do when we sign an arbitration clause. No one is required to sign it. On the other hand, the Federal government absolutely denies your right to a jury trial in Tax Court, which is your only option if you have a dispute with the IRS and they claim that you owe them money. The Federal government is the greatest violator of our rights.

Lower Taxes

By Greg Samples

5/21/2018

"A vote for Tim Burchett is a vote for NO tax increases." -Tim Burchett

A vote for Greg Samples is a vote for NO income tax.

Health Care Costs

By Greg Samples

5/17/2018

"Pharmaceutical drugs are one of the primary drivers of escalating healthcare costs. ... Currently pharmaceuticals have the option of 20 year patent times and may make claims for exclusivity in some cases. These protections limit competition and drag out the time before generic brands can enter the consumer market. A new category would limit patents for pharmaceutical drugs to 15 years....As a Member of Congress I will work to limit patent times and to make drug pricing more transparent." -Renee Hoyos

Greg Samples response: Quick fixes like this usually do not take into account the unseen effects of regulation. Besides have NO effect for the first 15 years, it could also have a stifling effect on new products. Moreover, if the patent time is shorter, it could actually cause an INCREASE in price in order to achieve the same return on investment in a shorter period of time.

A major cause of high medical cost is the regulatory control of the health care industry by the government. This occurs in the form of the high cost of getting new medical products to market by requiring FDA approval, and also by driving out alternative approaches that are more effective, less costly, have fewer side effects, and are more likely to prevent future recurrences.

My full statement on health care can be seen here: http://www.gregsamples4congress.com/issues.html?issue=Health_Care.html

Vices Are Not Crimes

By Greg Samples

5/17/2018

"To the men and women who serve in law enforcement, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the risks you take every day to protect and serve. It is beyond time for our culture to begin respecting law and order again." -Jimmy Matlock

In order for the people to once again respect law and order, it is necessary for the legislatures to stop enacting unconstitutional, immoral laws. We have too many laws that punish behavior where there is no victim. Vices are not crimes, and any legislator who attempts to punish a vice is a despot.

Change In Congress

By Greg Samples

5/17/2018

"If you want to see a change in Washington, NOW is the time to act." -Joshua Williams

Democrats and Republicans have been elected to Congress over and over again, but the only change we see in Washington is whether the left boot or the right boot of government is on the necks of the people. We see an approval rating below 20% no matter what party is in power. We will never see a real change in Washington until we begin electing people of principle, and the Libertarian Party IS the party of principle.

Education

By Greg Samples

5/14/2018

"Yet another example of why Betsy DeVos is a poor choice to lead the Department of Education. These for-profit institutions (remember Trump University?) need more scrutiny, not less." -Renee Hoyos, on the dismantling of an investigative unit within the Department of Education.

How many bureaucracies do we need? We already have an FBI, state, and local police departments to investigate fraud. The entire federal Department of Education needs to be dismantled. The more local the decisions about education, the better.

Isreal

By Greg Samples

5/14/2018

"Thank you, President Donald J. Trump, for keeping your promise to uphold a 23-year-old law that mandates our Embassy be located in the Israeli capital of Jerusalem!" -Jimmy Matlock

Unfortunately, the turmoil surrounding the moving of the embassy to Jerusalem is just a small part of the problem. Besides being unnecessary, it is a slap in the face to the descendants of the Palestinians whose land was taken by force by the United States, Britain, and the UN in 1948. The damage from that huge mistake has been done, but some damage control can be accomplished now by treating Israel the same as any other nation, including all of those in the Middle East.

Middle East Boondoggle

By Greg Samples

5/10/2018

"Thank you President Trump for standing up to the intellectuals, and keeping a key campaign promise." -Tim Burchett on the withdrawal from the Iran deal.

"I fully support President Trump’s decision to pull out of Obama’s Iran nuclear deal. Do you? I believe we were not negotiating from a position of strength under the Obama administration. If Iran wants to come back to the table, I believe President Trump can negotiate a far stronger deal that secures the safety of our allies and nation." -Jimmy Matlock

Apparently both Mr. Burchett and Mr. Matlock think that removing incentives for Iran to halt nuclear weapon production is a good thing. What good is keeping a campaign promise if it was a bad promise? There is no reason to pick a fight with Iran. This merely sets the stage for more American aggression in the Middle East, which has done nothing but cost Americans a great amount of blood and treasure. What must be asked is, do Misters Burchett and Matlock really believe that American should get more involved in the Middle East boondoggle, indicating that they have learned nothing from our past, or are they just pandering to their base?

Imperialism

By Greg Samples

5/4/2018

"President Trump is showing the world what peace through strength and American exceptionalism look like." -Jimmy Matlock

This is very revealing. The phrase "American exceptionalism" is a code phrase for neo-conservatism. Neo-conservatives believe in nationalism, and specifically that America should shape the entire world to its desires. It is a philosophy that will lead to the downfall of American ideals of freedom and justice, and has and will continue to be a huge drain on both the American economy and the safety of the American people and American troops.

Perhaps this explains why Mr. Matlock has no comment about foreign policy on his website. Unlike Mr. Duncan, who stood up to his own party at great risk by voting against the Iraq war, we should expect Mr. Matlock to march lockstep with the president in such areas. This is not what American needs.

Free and Fair Elections

By Greg Samples

5/3/2018

"In 3 short months, voters will go the polls and select a new U.S. Congressman." -Jimmy Matlock

No Mr. Matlock, in 3 months people will go to the polls to select the Republican nominee for Congress. The actual election will not be until November. What will happen in August is that all the people in Tennessee who are not Republicans or Democrats will be forced to pay for Republican and Democrat Party primaries, while at the same time, as a state representative, you have not allowed other parties like the Libertarian Party to even be on the ballot in November, which is not only unethical, but a violation of the state constitution which guarantees free and fair elections.

East Tennessee Values

By Greg Samples

11/7/2017

Jimmy Matlock stated: One year from today, on November 6, 2018, East Tennesseans will head to the polls and select a new U.S. Congressman. I believe that person needs to be somebody with the character, experience, and backbone to go to DC and reflect the values of East Tennessee.

What he fails to realize is that everyone in East Tennessee does not have the same values. Moreover, the same people have different values on different issues. Rather than trying to make a blanket statement that in reality says nothing, I will stand for the principles of peace, prosperity, and freedom, and ask all East Tennesseeans to join me.

Why the Libertarian Party?

By Greg Samples

7/10/2017

Wouldn't it be easier to be elected by running as a candidate from one of the two establishment parties? Yes, it would be easier, but it would be a lie. Haven't we had enough of lying politicians?

I'm not a Republican because I don't endorse pre-emptive war, nation building, empire building, imperialism, meddling in the foreign affairs of other nations, imposing religious dogma on citizens, or imprisoning people for non-violent, non-larcenous behavior that harms no one. Identifying as a Republican would imply that I endorse all of the above, because that has been the effect of Republican policies.

I'm not a Democrat because I know that the production of goods and services that people need does not result from shuffling money around, that human beings own their lives and the things they produce, (100% of it). I know that the income tax and excessive government spending destroys wealth and impoverishes those with the least assets, destroying the value of the earnings they do have. I'm not a Democrat because I believe that all human beings have the same human rights, and that no group ever has rights that others do not have. I'm not a Democrat because I believe that people are capable of making decisions about their own life, and always have that right, never to be given up to some other authority. Identifying as a Democrat would imply that I endorse all of the above, because that has been the effect of Democrat policies.

The policies of the Establishment parties are unsustainable. They are destroying America. The Libertarian Party is a vibrant, growing movement that carries with it moral principles and policies that will ultimately lead to both peace and prosperity. It is our only hope for viable American future.

Origin of Freedom

By Greg Samples

12/13/16

This page is an updated version of portions of the Health and Freedom Manual originally published in 1998.

Are you a free person? It is ironic that, usually, the most highly advanced animals on earth, human beings, are also the least free. All birds, fish, and wild animals are free to do as they please, go where they please, associate with whom they please, and work or play when they please, regardless of boundaries. They are bound only by their instinct and physical limitations. Freedom is natural, and its origin is as old as the infinite universe itself.

As human beings we have the capacity to develop our understanding of the universe and the world around us. Through this understanding, and the power of our mind, it is possible to greatly expand our freedom by overcoming our physical limitations, and by surmising about our origin, our place in the universe, our relationships to each other, our spirit. However, we also have an equal capacity to enslave ourselves. Complete freedom (and its counterpart, responsibility), is the natural state of all species. Manifesting desire, however, is also our natural state. We live only because we desire to live. Without desire, we would not exist. We desire to preserve ourselves and what we have attained (and obtained).

Imagine a community of only three persons living completely free in the natural state, A, B, and C. Nothing is identical, everything is unique, so at least one of the three, A, is a little bit larger and stronger than B or C. Suppose further, that A acquires an increase in desire, and decides to obtain by force something that B or C has labored to produce. This initial act of irresponsibility brings the first reduction in the amount of freedom, with B and C having their freedom reduced. B and C, realizing that separately they cannot protect themselves from A, but by joining forces together they can do so, enter into an agreement, a commitment to one another. This commitment is a limitation on their complete freedom, which they inherently possessed by virtue of their existence. We may enter into these agreements to protect ourselves, our possessions, or simply to reinforce our commonly held values. This simple process is repeated countless times in countless situations. Sometimes we call the structures of our agreements contracts, or clubs. Sometimes we call them gangs, and sometimes we call them government. Whatever we call them, we are trading freedom for security.

Thomas Jefferson described the above scenario as agreements to secure rights in the form of government. Governments come in the form of monarchies, oligarchies, dictatorships, republics, or democracies. In all cases, the people have given power, either by agreement or by default, to an entity in exchange for protection. Almost inevitably, however, the entity charged with protecting the people, like person A above, acquires additional desire. In another act of irresponsibility, the entity uses its power to overstep its authority and apply force to the people. Leaders thus become tyrants and freedom is further diminished. This is usually accomplished by the use of force or the threat of force, but it can also be done by deceit.

There are some major differences in these forms of government, however. In a monarchy, the king or queen is sovereign. Sovereign is defined as having supreme rank, power, and authority. In an absolute monarchy, the people have given up all their freedom, and what they are allowed to do is at the whim of the monarch. This obviously can have some devastating effects as the desires of the monarch ebb and flow. Depending upon a monarch to always do the right thing proved inconsistent at best.

At the end of the American Revolution, King George of England gave up his sovereignty over America to the people of the colonies. Each person living in the American states, and their descendants, became sovereign individuals, completely free in the natural state. Not being a perfect world, of course, this could not be sustained. A protectorate was still needed. Since the experience with monarchs had not been a pleasant one, the founders were well aware of the tyrannical possibilities of putting their trust in one person. Eventually there was an agreement entered into which we now call the Constitution of the United States. (This agreement was only among a handful of people. Everyone else has merely agreed by default.) America would be ruled by law, not by men. Potential tyrants, in the words of Jefferson, would be bound "with the chains of the Constitution."

But sovereignty remained with the people. Theoretically, the people were the creators of the Constitution, and retained the right to change it if they so desired. The people created the Constitution, the Constitution created the government. The people, not the government, are sovereign in America. The Constitution was a document which spelled out exactly what the government would be allowed to do. Article I addresses the establishment, procedures, and permitted endeavors of Congress.

Many people still did not trust congress to do what was expected of them, even with a list of do’s and don’ts. Therefore, the first 10 amendments were added immediately, enumerating certain rights while acknowledging that it was only a partial list. Clearly, the power delegated to the federal government is severely limited. However, although there is no real authority to do so, today the people who operate as the federal government exercise much more power than they lawfully have.

Are you a free person? Only if you have not enslaved yourself. If you have abdicated your sovereignty to another person, group, dogma, system, or artificial entity, you are no longer free. But you can reclaim your freedom at any moment. All it takes is to break the chains of social compliance that exist in your mind. This is not an easy task, but the more people in your life, community, and nation that you can persuade to reclaim their original freedom for themselves, the easier it will become for you.