Lucy Brenton

For U.S. Senate

Issues

It has been said, “By their acts, you shall know them”. Lucy has a history of evangelizing for liberty. Below are her stances on various Issues and how she will relate libertarian principles to those issues. We invite comments & question regarding Lucy’s positions. Lucy feels the libertarian approach is the best way to deal with many of the key issues facing our country today. Immigration, Foreign Policy, 4th Amendment Encroachments, Gun Rights, Taxation, etc.

Abortion: Click To Open

I believe that unless we protect the smallest and most helpless members of society, that we protect no one. It is my fervent desire that no baby ever be aborted and that no one ever finds it necessary to seek one. Regardless of my personal view, the government should not be involved in what is ultimately a medical decision controlled by the woman in whose body the baby is growing. Personally, I believe that those who want to reduce the number of abortions must continually step forward to offer help and alternatives to women and families by creating an accepting culture that offers hope, financial resources and support in a situation where many are scared, feeling that they have run out of options.

It is not the place of the Federal government to pay for abortions nor legislate this issue. The Constitution has no mention of abortion and doesn’t authorize the federal government to be involved in abortion. Therefore, as a Libertarian, I would vote no on any legislation at the federal level because it is not within the purview of the Constitution.

Agriculture/Hemp: Click To Open

Indiana is a strong agricultural State and the US is known for quality food, grain and other agricultural products around the world. It is imperative that federal government fulfill the responsibilities mandated by the Constitution to make interstate commerce uniform. Currently, the market for agricultural products is distorted by policies that incentive certain crops over others. Farmers, like other business people, follow the incentives given through farm subsidies while the free market is suppressed and ignored.

It is not the federal government’s job to pick winners and losers through farm subsidies. The free market must decide what crops and products are in demand and profitable. While the federal government can help make sure that interstate trade is uniform and fair, under the Constitution there is no power for the government to set prices or give subsidies. Those subsidies are just another example of corporate welfare and payment for political favors. Let the people keep the money in their pockets, let the market decide what is grown and stop the unconstitutional transfer of tax dollars to corporations.

Economy – Growth – Job Creation: Click To Open

Being broke in America really sucks as an individual. The federal government isn’t just broke – it’s been digging a hole for our great grandchildren. This is unacceptable and must be stopped immediately. To allow economic growth, the government must get out of the way. Government does not create jobs – private businesses do. Remove the barriers that real people face to starting and running their business and the economic growth that follows will be real and sustainable.

The Constitution is very clear about an issue central to the economy: who controls the issuance of our money and regulates its value. Article I Section 8 Paragraph 5: (The Congress shall have the power…) “To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures; 6: To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;” Congress has defied the mandate of the Constitution and handed over the power of monetary regulation to the Federal Reserve with disastrous results.

Government does not create jobs. It never has and never will. When government interferes, Entrepreneurs & companies are burdened and jobs are not created.

First, we must commit to keeping the government at the absolute minimum size. Too many government agencies are parasites on taxpayers, staffing alphabet soup agencies that are not operating within nor authorized by the Constitution. A streamlined government keeping power here it belongs: in the hands of the people that it serves.

Corporate taxes must end. Why? Corporations do NOT pay taxes. They write the check – but only because they first get the money from their customers. It is the customers who pay the taxes. Corporate taxation is only a scheme to mask the transfer of funds to the government.

I will work to reduce and eliminate the obstacles that prevent small businesses from creating jobs in this country so that more jobs are available to the people who want them.

Economic growth will happen as a natural consequence of a constitutional money system and a laissez-faire policy to free markets. Freedom produces more wealth. The federal government must be limited to its Constitutional powers in all things.

Environment: Click To Open

We all share the same environment and we all have the responsibility to keep the environment clean. This includes not soiling or trespassing on the environment by dumping trash or chemicals into our shared space. Corporations often dump chemicals into the environment or our water supply because it is more profitable for them to do so than to clean up or find alternatives to noxious chemicals. Taxpayers suffered by paying for the consequences of the actions of a private corporation that pollute our air, ground, and water.

Simply, this is trespass. The citizens have the right to live in a clean environment, free from anyone – corporations or individuals – that harm another. Regardless of whether you are punched in the face, someone dumps trash onto your property or releases toxic chemicals into your air or water, you have been the victim of trespass.

It is time, these perpetrators were held responsible for the trespass that is committed against people and property. When it is no longer more profitable to dump waste into the environment and force taxpayers and individuals to clean up the mess, we will see a change in the behavior of the perpetrators. When heads of companies use their corporation to commit trespasses that harm so severely they rise to a level of criminality, those trespassers must be held individually accountable. It is a rare event now when a corporation harms flora, fauna, water and humans and the individuals acting in their capacity as directors of those corporate actions are jailed or fined.

When individuals trespass against another, they should be held accountable. If I release toxic chemicals from my property that kill trees or animals that belong to my neighbor, I should be held accountable for trespass and a strict policy of restitution should be enforced. Whether corporate or individual, we must all be held to the same standards.

The one valid purpose of government is to protect its citizens from force and fraud. Environmental crimes are both a force and a fraud against taxpayers. I will work to end incentives to harm the environment and protect individual liberty and rights.

Foreign Policy: Click To Open

Foreign policy can be summed up succinctly: Friend to all, ally to none.

It’s time we stopped using foreign policy as an excuse to meddle in the affairs of foreign countries or worse, to try and grab their natural resources for the benefit of corporations.

Each sovereign country on this planet has the same rights that we do, given by God. Namely, to be free from the interference in their affairs from others. Our current foreign policy has created problems around the globe because of our manipulation and back door deals to install in power those that are convenient to our government.

My foreign policy is simple: to make friends, not enemies. To stay out of the internal affairs of sovereign nations. To trade freely for the benefit of each. To treat other countries and peoples as we wish to be treated. To not initiate force against them and not take their stuff. In summary, to be a good neighbor.

Should a country, in spite of the above, instead aggress against us, of course we defend ourselves. I would not engage in any unlawful wars. Only Congress can declare war. The endless unconstitutional wars in which we engage must be stopped immediately. The American Taxpayer should not be burdened any further in wars which only make defense contractors rich and turn the world against the US and its war machine.

Gay Rights: Click To Open

I have a very simple personal philosophy on this issue: everyone has the same rights, regardless of who they are sleeping with – or not. We each have the right to pursue happiness. That looks different to each person. My rights stop where your nose begins.

Quite frankly, my sex life and choices are not your business when they don’t affect you. I am not interested in who you are sleeping with and it is not my business nor is it the government’s business. Consenting adults should be left alone to pursue their own happiness and agenda as long as their practices do not interfere with the life, liberty or pursuit of happiness of another.

Obviously, non-consenting adults and minors are an entirely different issue. Government exists to protect its citizens from force and fraud. In the case of force or fraud against a person – whether sexual in nature or not – government must endeavor to protect the rights of the victim, prevent the perpetrator from harming another and seek for restitution for the victim.

I would never force association nor advocate for forced association by the government on behalf of one group or another. If a private business doesn’t wish to do business with an individual – for example, refuse to provide a good or service that is anathema to the personal beliefs of the business owner – it is not within the purview of the government to force such association and require any business owner to perform a service or offer a product when there exists choice in the marketplace.

Clearly, where there are government created or supported monopolies, there is a lack of choice at this time. As an example, utilities. With rare exception, individuals have only one choice for a water provider, sewer provider, natural gas or electricity provider. These types of monopolies should not be allowed to choose with whom they do business as they are enjoying an artificial market sustained by government.

In the case of a private business where there exists competition – for example a bakery – the free market should and will regulate this issue. A gay couple wanting a wedding cake that approaches a bakery owned by individuals who disagree with the marriage of homosexuals should not be forced by government to bake a cake. The free market will deny the bakery the profit from that transaction and the couple is free to seek an alternative provider of that service. Of course, it is also likely that publicity in the free market of the denial of services might cause some to avoid this bakery and others to support it with their use of its services. Those who seek to provide maximum freedom will likely win the most in terms of higher profits and customer satisfaction. All of this can and should occur with no interference from government.

Gun Rights: Click To Open

There are many who joke about gun control being “to use both hands.” While I agree, I think that there is an inherent responsibility that each citizen has to be ready to defend our country. I believe this responsibility extends beyond the paid military and rests in the hands of every able citizen. Our founding fathers believed this, too – and worded the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution very carefully to reflect this:

“A well regulated Milita, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

It is the right of “the people” (that’s you and I) to keep and bear Arms, not the right of the government. That right “shall not be infringed.”

Every willing citizen should keep Arms, be proficient in their use – and be ready to use them to defend themselves, their families, their property and this Nation.

Illegal Immigration: Click To Open

It seems redundant to say, but illegal immigration is, well, illegal! Why are people willing to come to this country however they can, even when it means breaking the law and risking deportation?

There seem to be two main reasons that people come to this country. They are economic opportunity and economic theft. What does that mean? It means that some come to contribute to our economy, work hard and pursue the American Dream. Others dream of stealing from our taxpayers by coming and stealing from our welfare state.

Those who come to work hard and contribute should be welcomed. They want to build a better life for themselves, let them. They want to build a better country and stronger country – let them work alongside us in our communities. Let us cooperate for mutual benefit. Let them come legally so that they may honorably become Americans. Streamline the immigration process, screen carefully to keep out criminals. We were all immigrants once.

“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

Those who come to mooch off our welfare system should be stopped. Chances are they came here illegally and as criminals should be deported. If you are not here to work hard, to contribute and build community – then you are not welcome to steal from our public coffers.

Let good people in – make it easy to do so. Make it easier to get bad people out and remove the incentives that cause those unwilling to work to overrun our borders and burden our taxpayers.

Job Creation: Click To Open

Government does not create jobs. It never has and never will. What does create jobs? Entrepreneurs who are willing to put their resources on the line to provide a product or service and need employees to get the job done. When government interferes, Entrepreneurs are burdened and jobs are not created.

Why do companies move their operations to other countries? Burdensome regulation and high taxes. The result? US citizens lose their jobs – then go to Walmart to find the same products they used to make at the jobs they no longer have.

What can be done about this? First, we must commit to keeping the government at the absolute minimum size. Too many government agencies are mere parasites on taxpayers, staffing alphabet soup agencies that are not operating within nor authorized by the Constitution. A streamlined government steals the least from taxpayers keeping the spending power where it belongs: in the hands of the labor that created it.

Corporate taxes must end. Why? Corporations do NOT pay taxes. They write the check – but only because they first get the money from their customers. It is the customers who pay the taxes. Corporate taxation is only a scheme to mask the transfer of funds to government.

I will work to reduce and eliminate the obstacles that prevent small businesses from creating jobs in this country so that more jobs are available to the people who want them.

Marijuana Legalization: Click To Open

Throughout the ages, man has cultivated many plants. Some for food, some for medicine, some for industry. Marijuana and Hemp are two of those plants whose usefulness is nearly unlimited. It is this usefulness which drew the attention of competing industries and led to big industries demanding it be made illegal for one important reason: protecting their profits.

All restrictions on Marijuana and Hemp should be removed immediately for both personal and industrial uses. We don’t tax people who consume broccoli and we shouldn’t tax people who consume marijuana. This useful plant should be available to all who wish to grow it and sell it.

Marijuana is exceptionally safe. Marijuana has the power to replace a multitude of dangerous pharmaceutical drugs that are expensive to us and profitable to pharmaceutical companies. This is the real reason you have been denied Marijuana.

Hemp is extremely useful. From rope, paper, cloth, concrete, plastic and dozens of other useful material uses…hemp has the power to fix carbon and change our world. What else would it change? Corporate profits. Look at the products just listed and understand that industries that compete with the above are the reason you don’t have widespread use of hemp. You are being denied the better building materials, paper, clothing, biodegradable plastics and products because there are profits to protect. This is the real reason you have been denied Hemp.

Responsible adults should be free to decide what products they use and consume – as long as they don’t hurt anyone else. The essence of freedom is self ownership. Decriminalize marijuana and release all non-violent offenders jailed for the non-crime of deciding what to put in their own bodies. Release hemp to industry so that farmers and manufacturers can give us innovative products from this amazing plant.

Medical Rights: Click To Open

Libertarians call for choice in all things and medicine is no exception. Inherent in many medical procedures are risks. Some risks are small, some are great. Where there is risk, there must be choice.

One way in which choice is limited is when patients are not allowed to choose what medicine they want to use. It is the patient who bears the risk and therefore it is the patient who must be free to choose. The person best able to advise the patient is the person chosen by the patient as their advisor. While I might disagree with your choice of provider – or your choice of medication – I believe that as long as you are willing to own up to your personal responsiblity to deal with the consequences of your choices, then your choices are yours.

Some might choose to visit doctors specializing in traditional healing methods such as herbs. Others might choose Allopathic Doctors who use a more pharmaceutical based approach. All options should be available to patients – and no type of medicine should be allowed to create a monopoly – the natural result of which is to increase profits and limit patient choice.

The Affordable Care Act limits choice. It forces patients to buy a product – an insurance product – which they may not need nor want. This must end. Private insurers can decide whether or not to offer insurance contracts to consumers – and consumers can choose whether or not they want insurance and if so, what coverage is appropriate for them. Maybe none at all.

In a free market, solutions will be created by the marketplace as consumers clamor for products that meet their needs. In a market free from government interference, innovation will flourish. Most importantly, the power of a consumer-driven marketplace can break the stranglehold of monopoly that we currently see in medicine. It is abhorrent that an individual be forced to buy a product that he doesn’t want, that doesn’t offer him the protection he needs – and provides services he would never use.

I suggest one solution among many – the formation of private health care co-operatives. People with similar lifestyles and similar risks can share the cost of healthcare – on a voluntary basis. I personally object to the ACA and any forced insurance scheme that lumps all groups together. I make healthier food choices than most. I don’t smoke or drink – yet under the ACA I am forced to subsidize the behavior and consequences of those who do. This is un-American and must be stopped.

I will fight for your right to make your own decisions. Only you can decide if a treatment is appropriate for you. Only you should decide who you want advising you in your personal healthcare decisions. There must always be true, informed consent when your health is on the line. Just as the Nuremberg Code stands against forced medical experimentation – I stand against forcing you to be a victim of the failed experiment that is our current healthcare system.

Minimum Wage: Click To Open

The minimum wage is often a sore subject with many workers. Some say it is too low and demand a “living wage.” Others say it is too high and discourages employers from hiring entry level works. Like Goldilocks, the government seems to constantly look for a minimum wage that is “just right.”

What is the truth about minimum wage? Surely opinions differ and I will offer mine. A little historical perspective will be sprinkled in that will demonstrate our minimum wage laws did not develop in a vacuum.

The first problem with a minimum wage is the obvious intervention of government in the private lives of citizens. Every adult citizen has the right to contract with other adult citizens for mutual benefit. The contracts can be upheld by the courts as long as there is no force, fraud, criminal intent or other immoral or illegal action (we won’t argue illegal vs. immoral right now).

If a low skilled worker offers their labor, negotiating a wage with an employer, who is government to decide what that worker should be paid? Interventionists would argue that the low skilled worker may be taken advantage of by a more sophisticated employer, but is that really what is going on? Big Brother might demand that employers pay $15 per hour. The low-skilled worker only produces $6 per hour of value. Employing this worker with their limited skill set is not sustainable for the employer. The employer would, therefore, decline to hire this worker.

Sadly, this worker is motivated and knows that their skill set is limited. The worker lacks experience. The worker is eager to learn and willing to work hard in order to build skills and experience in anticipation of one day earning more. This teenage worker will be blocked by government do-goodism from working and gaining valuable skills and experience. All to “protect” this worker, of course, from evil companies.

Further,an economic disparity will result as this worker languishes and falls into apathy. The workers hurt most by minimum wage laws include minorities and already suffering low income, entry level hopefuls. These laws are grounded in racism and suppression of minorities.

Walter E. Williams, the renowned African-American Economist wrote: “During South Africa’s apartheid era, the secretary of its avowedly racist Building Workers’ Union, Gert Beetge, said, “There is no job reservation left in the building industry, and in the circumstances, I support the rate for the job (minimum wage) as the second-best way of protecting our white artisans.” The South African Economic and Wage Commission of 1925 reported that “while definite exclusion of the Natives from the more remunerative fields of employment by law has not been urged upon us, the same result would follow a certain use of the powers of the Wage Board under the Wage Act of 1925, or of other wage-fixing legislation. The method would be to fix a minimum rate for an occupation or craft so high that no Native would be likely to be employed.” (source: lewrockwell.com)

I am against the minimum wage and in favor of its abolishment. The unintended (or historically intended) consequences of interference in the right of the employee to negotiate and contract for their own benefit become more apparent in light of historical and institutional racism. Allow free people to negotiate for themselves so that the control of their lives rests where it should: in their own hands.


Self-Ownership: Click To Open

Foundational in the Libertarian philosophy is that of self ownership. One is born with a bundle of natural rights, recognized by the Constitution of the United States as the right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. Each individual has these as natural rights at birth. They are not granted by one’s parents, the government or any document. They are inherent to one’s existence as a human being.

The first aspect of self-ownership is that of the physical body. We are each born with a physical body. It is incumbent upon each person to take care of their own physical body as best they see fit. If one does a good job of this, the likely reward is health and a long life. If not, disease and misery may result.

What right, if any, does another person have to control the body of another? I would submit that I have only the right to control my own body and never the right to control the body of another. Although I don’t smoke or drink you won’t find me demanding that you stop smoking or drinking. Similarly, I avoid all drugs – whether prescription or not – and prefer to find my health in fruits, vegetables, and herbs. I exercise sporadically and others exercise religiously. I admire them for their efforts and strive to emulate them. It is clearly a good idea to exercise but do those who exercise gain the right to tell me that I must follow them in their endeavors? Clearly not.

When people get together in a group and organize, they are often referred to as the “government.” In a sometimes misguided and other times brazen attempt to control others for profit or power, “government” will decree that some things are good and others bad. While making these declarations, the demand for certain behaviors to be emulated or eliminated is typically tied to a reward or punishment. Government often uses the carrot and stick to elicit outcomes. Whether the motivation of Government is good or ill is irrelevant.

History is replete with examples of the misery of unintended consequences. Take the so-called “Drug War.” According to news reports in 2012, over a trillion dollars had been spent up to that point on trying to prevent people from exercising their right to self-ownership. A group of people decided that other people should not be allowed to use drugs, should not be allowed to determine for themselves what substances they would put into their own bodies. Simultaneously, this same group called government creates mandates on other substances that must be put in the body. Lunacy.

If we could instead recognize the natural right of self-ownership, each person could make a cost versus benefit decision for themselves. The individual lives in the physical body and will suffer or enjoy the consequences of their individual decisions. A faraway group of people cannot effectively or efficiently make decisions for others. The basis of freedom is the freedom of the individual to act in his own self-interest – as long as his actions harm no one.

I own my physical body and I also own my mind. Mental self-ownership is clearly an important facet of freedom. The right to think one’s own thoughts, to hold an opinion or conclusion that is in opposition to the group – such is foundational to freedom. When the Constitution was created, amendments were added to necessarily reflect rights that by enumeration would be further accentuated.

Grab hold of the foundation of your freedom. Self ownership. Guard it, harm no one.