Tonight I will be participating in the Minneapolis Business Global Community discussion ( https://rmbgc.org/events-archive/minneapolis-mayoral-candidates-speak ).
This is the story I’d like to tell
Hello, my name is Troy Benjegerdes, my principal is Farmer-Labor, and I’m running for Mayor of Minneapolis, and I’d like to tell you how I got here.
Sometime in the 18th or 19th century, my ancestors immigrated to this country, with the promise of a new life. They were given stolen land, and we proceeded to divide up the prairies in Iowa and turn them into the largest geo-engineered regions in the world, and use that land to produce food for half a billion people.
10 years ago I came to Minneapolis to start a new job, and around that time, I recall sitting in St. Paul and downloading a new software that very few people understood because I saw a farmer had starting selling Alpaca socks for Bitcoin, a new entirely electronic digital currency.
Then 8 years ago, I became involved in the Minneapolis Energy Options project. The residents and city council had all said we want more renewable energy. In Ames, Iowa, where I lived before, when the city council voted to do the same thing, the city Municipal Electric director said Yes, Sir, we’ll do that, and proceeded to make a long-term commitment to buy half the power generated from a nearby wind farm. In Minneapolis, the investor owned utilities sent out some scary letters, calling into question whether a city could ever run something as complicated as an electric utility.
It’s quite obvious from utility bills that cities like Ames Iowa, Los Angeles California, Austin, Texas, or Rochester Minnesota are quite capable of running complicated things like utility operations at a lower total cost of ownership for rate-payers due to the lower lending costs for municipal bonds.
Thanks to the amazing power of ranked choice voting, I decided to run for mayor then, because if the city council was not going to put local energy on the ballot, then I could run for mayor and make sure at least one candidate was talking about it
Since then, I ran for mayor again in 2017 since it seemed like a better investment for me to make in participatory direct democracy to pay the City of Minneapolis $500 to be the farmer-labor candidate than it would be to give anyone else money.
And here we are again. Had I kept those bitcoin I mined 10 years ago, instead of buying the mayortroy.com domain for 1 bitcoin 8 years ago, I might have been able to leverage that investment in new money into a competitive campaign this year. As such, it is not to be, as even the 5 bitcoin I once filed as a loan to my campaign is no match for the millions of dollars that have flowed into campaign coffers for the leading candidates for this election.
So here I am again, reminding you that you only get to vote for MayorTroy once every four years, but you can vote with your money, with every dollar you spend on food, every day.
That’s how I got here. Now what I want to do is talk about what I’d like to do for the city of Minneapolis.
First, I want everyone here who’s run for mayor to join me on a consensus-driven Mayoral council. There are more issue we have to deal with, more viewpoints, more critical changs that must be made that none of us can do it alone. I will need all of your help in creating a monetary policy for a Minneapolis Digital Electronic Currency, and we will start with a basic income pilot program so every one of us up here tonight can get paid a basic income in the new currency we’ve just created so we can spend full time working for our residents.
If we do our job well, the rest of the world will see the value in well-run municipal digital electronic currency, and the market capitalization of our currency, and our city will rise.
If we do not do our job, we have no others to blame, and we will have wasted no taxpayer money on political promises we can never deliver.
The next thing I want to do with our new municipal currency is double the Minneapolis Public Safety Department budget to keep every police officer on the force, and pair every one of them with a social services and mental health response department. Anyone without a home will be offered a safe, supervised place to live, as this costs less over time than paying higher health care costs when homeless residents seek treatment in our hospital emergency rooms. We need to be recruiting public safety officers who work in the communities in which they live, and pay them a living wage sufficient to buy a home and build and ADU, or purchase a downtown condo from the wages they get working with a good work-life balance.
The most critical long-term aspect of the Minneapolis Municipal Currency plan is provide a basic income for all residents, indexed to the price of housing, where we regulate the supply of money based on the cost of living, rather than trying to add more onerous regulations for small landlords to comply with that only benefit big corporations with full time public and government relations staff.
We need to make it so use of the Minneapolis Municipal Currency also allows automatic creation and filing of all relevant tax returns using open-source software developed in the public interest. Private accountants and companies can and should leverage this public good to build value-added services, and we should always have the freely available public option that anyone can use and inspect the code for.
Thank you for listening, and vote Yes on question to, and rank Mayor Troy the farmer-labor candidate.
Why I am running for mayor, if I have no chance (in this election cycle)?
Well, because maybe one of the other candidates will read what I’ve written about what we could do with a Minneapolis Digital Electronic currency, and start to imagine what else can we do with control of our money besides offer a universal basic income
And maybe one of these cycles you will see a campaign funded by locally created Minneapolis Money, not something managed and controlled by a partisan campaign finance funded group legislators in a distant city.
I saw some clickbait headline today about “Ted Cruz thinks Bitcoin can save the Texas power grid”, so I did some digging. What I did find was https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/10/ted-cruz-says-bitcoin-will-stabilize-texas-electric-grid-heres-why-hes-wrong/
As much as I might like to bash Ted Cruz, he’s not entirely wrong. However what is definitely ‘magical thinking’ in the critique of Ted Cruz’s bitcoin fantasy is the idea that more laws, compliance, and regulations will somehow bring an investor owned utility grid to heel to serve the people, rather than the investors. The only thing it will bring is more campaign contributions from utility companies to shut down any talk of other options, like maybe a municipal utility. If you have any questions about this, may I refer you to how Minneapolis Energy Options went down https://mayortroy.wordpress.com/2013/07/31/engineerfarmer-runs-for-mayor-seeks-class-action-law-firm-to-represent-ratepayers-of-minneapolis/
In the meantime, enjoy the Farmer’s climate policy video while I finish cleaning some soybeans…
So the engineers tasked with designing and building the city’s new defenses fudged the numbers so that their work would actually protect New Orleans from the inevitable. After all, no one knew when Congress would get around to funding New Orleans protective measures again, and Corps engineers had a unique opportunity to win the resources needed to do their job properly.https://time.com/6094221/hurricane-ida-engineering-protection/
Minneapolis is going to have to deal with climate change one way or another. You might only get to vote for the farmer-engineer candidate who talks about the inevitable transition to 100% renewables once every four years.
Every day, with every dollar you spend, you can vote with your money, and your choice of food.
Find a farmer to buy food from. Go visit the farm. Grow some vegetables and feed some of your neighbors. Organize a crowdfunded financing plan for your school to invest in open-source hardware farm equipment that they can teach their children how to repair. Download the Skywater PDK and help your farmers build open-source chips, made in Bloomington, MN so we don’t have a food shortage because of proprietary semiconductor chip shortages.
If all of that sounds too technical for you, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask how you can help get out the vote.
I paid my 0.011 BTC (or 0.16 Eth) to the great City of Minneapolis to be the Farmer-Labor candidate on your ballot again this November.
Is there a reason to vote for me? Absolutely. The currency I downloaded off the internet— https://mayortroy.wordpress.com/2017/09/16/taking-criticism/
610 years ago when it was only worth unicorn farts is now a 60 billion dollar21 million Bitcoin (or $1,912,371,815,295 dollars) global economic phenomenon that has made people like me who see how technology changes the world and the political landscape major players on the international world stage.
All of this is making me wonder if that 3 bitcoin I used to fund my campaign the first time may have been a distinctly bad investment, as if I had just hung onto it long enough, I would have been able to cash it out to buy enough advertising to be invited to all the debates.
What matters is how many of you remember what I said about cryptocurrency, farms, and renewable energy 8 years ago the first time I ran for mayor. Or watch the 2013 Minneapolis Mayoral Forum on Urban Ag and let me know what I should keep talking about.
Every day, with every dollar (or cryptocoin), you can vote with your money. What are you telling the markets you want this fall in the November election? Which candidates are beholden to the big donors, and which ones might be willing to listen to what you really have to say?
The farmer-labor party says that these rights are Human rights:
- health care
Our current government consensus does not believe it owes you these things, and you do not owe a corrupt government tribute in a currency that does not guarantee these rights. Now, whether that government may decide to exert it’s perceived authority to lock you up if you don’t pay is another story for another post about systemic psychological and physical abuse.
There is no right to work in a capitalist economy. If it costs more money for your employer to pay your health insurance and salary, the only rational thing for a business to do is close instead of taking a loss, or taking a loan that only those who didn’t have real work to do had time to fill out the paperwork. Some of us were too busy getting ready to plant food. (edit: your Mayortroy did take the farm welfare handout, so it’s only fitting that I should pay it forward and give out some food)
Politicians cannot magically re-open the economy. If no one comes to your store, or if your employees get sick, you’ll be shut down regardless of if the government thinks your business is essential or not.
What business and property owners can do is join the farmer-labor party and start accepting payment in a basic income currency that takes part of the transaction fees to insure that all market participants have food, shelter, and health care.
“Supply chains have to keep moving if we are going to overcome this pandemic and get food from where it is produced to where it is needed.”
I got into farming because someone once told me farmers feed the world.
After I farmed for awhile, I realized it wasn’t the farmers, it was the bankers and food brokers that feed the world.
I am sitting on enough oats to make oatmeal for 10,000 people, yet I can’t seem to get anyone to tell me where to send it, for this might upset the amazon shopping cart.
Oh yeah, I need a dehuller. Apparently I can only get these from China. https://www.almondbuttermachine.com/product/sheller/spelt-einkorn-dehulling.html
“Back in the 1980s, before movies and video games reduced the genre to a mass of unimaginative violence and body modification tropes, cyberpunk was the literary movement that was busy projecting our fears about rampant capitalism, media oversaturation, and emerging computer networks into fictional futures,” writes Infinite Detailauthor and journalist Tim Maughan.
The 2020s are, in a real, tangible sense, the conclusion of The Long 1980s. Writing in the 1980s, foundational cyberpunk authors were watching as leaders on both sides of the Atlantic pursued a set of political reforms collectively known as neoliberalism. Prioritizing competition in the market above all else, these reforms were fundamentally a political project, aimed at shrinking the public sphere and undoing many of the commitments to social welfare that had been made in the wake of the chaos, upheaval, and deprivation of the first half of the 20th century. The neoliberal turn was a project of unmaking the state for individuals and communities and remaking it for capital.
The election is coming. Remember you only get to vote for the Cypherpunk farmer once every 4 years, and you get to vote with your money, every day, with every transaction you make. Maybe it’s time to reconsider basic income or start playing the long game.
Who is essential in this economy?
Was it acceptable (or just inescapable?) to the miners and railroaders of America, the factory hands, the men and women who died by the hundreds of thousands from accident or sickness, where they worked or where they lived – casualties of progress? … If there are necessary sacrifices to be made for human progress, is it not to essential to hold the principle that those to be sacrificed must make the decision themselves?
If we are really to make the decision to sacrifice ourselves in the name of progress, we must own the means of production.
Anything less is slavery, and we have a new slave trade in the world today, the essential workers sorting packages for the great and powerful Jeff Bezos so we might enjoy our one-click quarantine, the sanitation workers dying of disease so that we can flush our hoards of toilet paper, and the card-carrying essential farm workers who collect no returns on investment, only a paycheck.
These are the essential wage-slaves of our era, and while we site comfortably in our homes with on-demand 24×7 internet addiction, who is dying to bring us our daily news cycle? Did we give them a choice? Did we give them a path to ownership?
Some of us have been doing this for generations, and some of us own our means of production, and sometimes you see results like https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2020/02/24/808764422/data-privacy-concerns-are-raised-after-startup-tries-to-rent-farmland when big corporate contracts are canceled as the result of the outcry of some long-standing local connections and farmers who own their means of production.
This is a dramatically different power exchange than the union organizing that went on at Amazon until the organizer was summarily fired for disobeying the mandated social distance between wage-slave and owner.
Do you really want this caste system? That may be fine for some of you city folk who think renting is a great deal (until you can’t pay your rent), however I can tell you it’s going to keep creating more catastrophe until we start having a conversation about essential ownership.