Because pictures speak louder than words, we commissioned renowned graphic artist Scott Bieser* to create a poster illustrating situations in which individuals feel powerless against draconian laws and regulations – situations the Libertarian Party has been combating since the party’s founding in 1971.
Each panel stands as a benchmark against which we can all measure progress since the poster’s first printing in 2007:
Our tax code is 73,954 pages long, and therefore, compliance costs in anguish and currency are huge. Often ordinary citizens are subjected to harassment or worse by the IRS. Today, at least the realization that the tax code needs reform has descended upon Congresses.
Excessive force, profiling, unwarranted searches and seizures, and other lapses mar the reputation of those sworn to uphold the Constitution and tasked to promote our safety. Today, tragic events involving excessive force in the cities of Ferguson, MO, and NY City do not indicate much progress.
Victimless crimes still consume inordinate amounts of time and treasure. The war on drugs still promotes violence within our poorer neighborhoods and supports a costly massive bureaucracy. However, today some progress is evidenced by the enactment of state and local drug laws that ignore federal legislation.
People crossing borders in search of freedom and better opportunities than they have at home still suffer dangers, even death, in their efforts. Today, at least immigration reform is on Congress’s table.
Those who have forgotten the Redevelopment Agencies razing San Francisco’s Fillmore District in the 1950’s, erasing a part of the City’s rich culture, depriving hundreds of their homes and livelihood, might not be bothered by our current Board of Supervisors’ loose talk of exercising eminent domain, or insinuating the obsolescence of the single family home. We have not forgotten.
Progress has been made in the acceptance of the idea that the choice of whom one marries should be a personal one. Today, same-sex marriage is legal in 37 states. Some progress has been since 2007.
Small and medium-sized businesses are essential for a healthy economy. Yet, they are burdened by layers of legislation, taxes and fees, causing many to close. Progress today is as elusive as in 2007.
This beautiful poster contains a couple of interesting pieces of history worth mentioning:
The second panel down on the left shows two SWAT team members seizing a gun from an older woman. All three are standing in water up to their knees. This scene immortalizes the tragedy that was Hurricane Katrina, the 2005 devastation caused by nature, government bungling, and random assaults on civil liberties.*
The panel right below that shows a menacing “coyote” asking for money to drive a worker across the border. The poster’s artist, Scott Bieser, did not know Spanish, and it appears the LPSF member who worked with Mr. Bieser on the poster didn’t either. Subsequent printings of the poster by others (the artist retained the right to modify and print the image) show corrected versions. So, you know you are seeing an original authentic LPSF poster if you see the mangled Spanish sentences!
The primary intent of our purchasing this poster was to help highlight a few infringements on personal liberty which Libertarians have consistently resisted. However, the secondary intent was to reward those who contributed to our cause by either bringing in three or more dues-paying members or donating $100 to the Libertarian Party of San Francisco. As of today, we still have a few of these beautiful posters left.
March 21, 2015