Representatives from several parties and members of the public who attended on January 13, 2008, had a robust discussion of the issues.
Do any of the current candidates really stand for change?
Why isn’t the primary on the same day in every state? Should all candidate on the ballot be in the debates? What about Instant Runoff Voting? Why are millions of tax dollars spent to help Republicans and Democrats select and test their candidates, when a great number of taxpayers (some say a majority) are independent or otherwise affiliated.
Presidential candidate Michael Badnarik addresses the crowd at the Liberty Fest in Okemos.
The annual Liberty Fest banquet on November 13, 2004 began with a cash bar social hour at the Hampton Inn & Suites in Okemos. Sponsored by the Capital Area Libertarian Party, the event was opened by a town crier in colonial garb with a clanging bell exclaiming "Here ye, hear ye", followed by a humorous proclamation direct from "King George the W" of Washington.
Libertarians came from as far away as Indiana and Ohio to attend the banquet, which was a full house. The following Monday a nice write-up appeared in the MSU State News (45,000 readers) titled "Libertarians celebrate awareness, progress". Winners of the traditional raffle took home antiqued copies of the original Constitution, "Liberty Works" mugs, and some notes from the federal reserve.
Presidential candidate Michael Badnarik delivered the keynote address, fresh off the campaign trail. Author of a book on the U.S. Constitution titled "It's Good to be King", he also presented a constitutional integrity seminar on Sunday at the same location. The seminar was also well attended, with twenty-seven students paying for the privilege of Mr. Badnarik's insightful tutoring. Included in the fee was an autographed copy of his book.
Awards were presented after dinner to Defender of Liberty recipients. Stewart Ruley was named posthumously as a Supporter of Liberty for his gracious estate gift to the Libertarian Party of Michigan. The Communicator of Liberty was presented to Jamie Lewis for his work on the newsletter and untiring efforts in western Michigan as an activist and candidate. The final award for Producer of Liberty went to Tim Beck, organizer of the Detroit Coalition for Compassionate Care, which was responsible for the medical marijuana initiative approved in the November election.
The event was videotaped and broadcast on the cable access show "Voice of Liberty" the following week. Copies are available for a nominal fee by contacting Will Tyler White at the email address below.