Dan's Views on the Issues

Taxes and Spending

Income taxes create a disincentive to produce and invest, which decreases economic output, consumer spending and wages for working Americans. Phase out the personal income tax, capital gains tax, gift tax and inheritance/death tax. Balance the federal budget and pay down the national debt by reducing and ultimately eliminating unconstitutional federal government programs & spending.

In a thriving economy, existing excise taxes and tariffs would be more than enough to fund the Department of Defense and the legal system. I support a national sales tax on consumption to REPLACE the current inefficient, complex income tax system.

The Republican Spending Explosion
by Veronique de Rugy, Cato Institute

Simplifying Federal Taxes: The Advantages of Consumption-Based Taxation
by Chris Edwards, Cato Institute

Fairtax.org

National Taxpayers Union Report: For Third Year Running, No Member of Congress Voted for Net Reduction in Federal Spending

Revolutionary Reform: The Transition to a National Retail Sales Tax
by Erica J. Pagel, NTU

Education

Government spending on K-12 schools in the United States is higher than in any other developed country, with an average per-pupil cost of $6,857. Yet 9-and-13-year-old American students rank last in mathematics and science among students from the seven large countries that administered the most recent International Assessment of Education Progress.

Government-run schools are clearly failing to educate our children. That is particularly tragic for children in inner cities, where low test scores are accompanied by huge social problems: high dropout rates, teacher demoralization, illegitimacy and threats to teacher and student safety.

Allow parents to choose private or other public schools using school vouchers (at the state or local level) or universal education tax credits (see Cato link below for more information). The Federal government, one-size-fits-all public school programs and regulations have caused more harm than good and should be replaced with local control. Moreover, the Federal government has no constitutional authority to mandate education regulations over state legislatures and local school boards.

Private schools are higher in quality, lower in cost and more accountable to parents than government run public schools. Savings generated through opting out of the local government schools will lower local property taxes and eliminate the need for new statewide taxes. School choice will increase innovation and quality since the private sector has a financial incentive to please its customers (parents and students). Good teachers would be paid higher salaries since schools would be competing for the best talent in order to improve quality and attract new students.

We must remove the burden of locally funded federal mandates. Education funding is more accountable and fiscally prudent when controlled at the local level.

Milton and Rose Freidman Foundation for School Choice

Increasing Parental Control of Education through the Universal Education Credit
by Darcy Ann Olsen and Matthew J. Brouillette, Cato Institute

Terrorism and the War in Iraq

I support a national defense based on strategic independence and diplomacy based on prudent nonintervention. The past and present administrations' attempts to unilaterally police the world have increased the likelihood of terrorist attacks against the U.S. while decreasing our national security and moral standing.

I do not support a resolution authorizing force against Iraq and would not support initiating military action unless attacked.

Continue to search for terrorists that did attack us and bring them to justice.

Does U.S. Intervention Overseas Breed Terrorism? The Historical Record
by Ivan Eland, Cato Institute

Bush Hoping for Mass Amnesia
by Doug Bandow, Cato Institute

Environment

Assess pollution user fees instead of corporate welfare subsidies to oil/gas/coal industries. This will more effectively protect the environment by creating financial incentives to use cleaner, renewable energy sources and will reduce our dependence and demand for foreign oil.

Reduce pollution by enforcing strict liability for industrial and governmental offenders and by assessing significant pollution user fees commensurate with the potential environmental impact. The U.S. military is the nation's largest polluter and should compensate local communities for environmental damage caused.

Re-legalize industrial hemp to:

  1. Create wealth and jobs for farmers
  2. Help save the soil and forests
  3. Create an alternative, renewable fuel source
  4. Produce paper and other products made with pulp and fiber

Replace destructive income and capital gains taxes with user fees on consumption to help protect the environment, stimulate the economy and create high paying jobs. Higher take home pay would more than offset the increased costs of consuming products destructive to the environment (gasoline, oil, plastics, etc.).

PERC, the Political Economy Research Center

Vote Hemp on the Environment.

Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests

Clean Water Action League

Drug Policy

Reduce crime and corruption significantly by ending the War on Drugs, which will remove the incentive for addicts to steal for drug money or gangs to fight over territory. Pardon non-violent drug offenders from prison to make room for violent felons that are being released early. Allow doctors to decide which drugs to prescribe for their patients; for example, allowing medicinal marijuana to cancer and AIDS patients and methadone to heroine addicts under a doctor's care.

Marijuana Policy Project

National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws

Drug Policy Foundation

Gary Johnson Is Right by David Boaz
by David Boaz, Cato Institute

Health Care

Increase quality, innovation and availability of health care services while significantly lowering costs by reducing government regulation and control over the industry. I support medical savings accounts to enable small businesses and individuals to purchase health care services tax-free. I propose the use of health care vouchers at the state or local level for those citizens who are unable to afford health care or prescription drugs. Significantly decrease the cost of prescription drugs by allowing independent private drug testing companies to compete with the inefficient FDA for approval of new drugs.

Support efforts for drug reimportation to lower the cost of prescription drugs for Americans. Presently, U.S. taxpayers and patients pay for almost all research and development costs through higher prices while subsidizing foreign consumption of prescription drugs.

Social Security

Would you rather invest a portion of your wages into a private retirement account, or be forced to contribute 12.4% of your compensation into the failing Social Security System, which according to its own Board of Trustees is projected to be bankrupt by the year 2032?

Over the past 70 years, the stock market has returned an average of 7% a year. By contrast, the average return on money paid into the Social Security system is 1.2% a year. That means that, even with its ups and downs, over the long term, the stock market pays 5 TIMES as much as Social Security.

Nevertheless, politicians, Democrats in particular, try to scare Americans into believing that individual retirement accounts are riskier than Social Security, that putting your money into the Social Security system is somehow the safer choice. The fact is Americans could invest their retirement money with almost no risk. Under my individual retirement account plan, participants would be able to avoid the stock market altogether, by directing their money into bonds, money markets, or other low-risk investments, all of which would STILL provide a higher rate of return, and a more secure retirement, than Social Security. No matter what the Democrats try to tell you, obligations to existing retirees would still be honored under this privatization plan, but YOU would be given the choice to opt out of a system that will pay you NOTHING by the time you retire.

Other countries (including Australia, Great Britain, Chile, and Mexico) have successfully made the transition from failing social security systems to individual retirement accounts. It's time for America to follow their lead.

Social Security Privatization and Reform, a Cato Institute Project

We Can't Ignore Social Security Reform Any Longer
by Michael Tanner, Cato Institute

Term Limits

During the first 150 years of this country's history, term limits were unnecessary. Turnover in the U.S. House of Representatives was routinely over 50 percent. But in recent years, a desire for power has infiltrated our nation's legislature.

Over the last decade we have experienced reelection rates averaging over 90 percent creating a class of career politicians who have insulated themselves from the public will and grown less and less representative of the people. Like the Founding Fathers, the American people recognize the need for new blood in government. They have decided that it is time for their elected officials to return home at regular intervals. Term limits have seized the hearts and minds of millions of Americans frustrated with an unresponsive and arrogant government.

U.S. Term Limits

Campaign Finance Reform

Recently passed campaign finance laws protect incumbents from criticism and help ensure their 90% plus re-election rates. Respect free speech and promote more competitive elections by allowing individual citizens to contribute their own money in any amount to the campaigns or political organizations of their choice.

Taxpayers should not be forced to support political campaigns.

Corporations and unions should not be allowed to contribute to political campaigns or organizations unless they receive permission from their shareholders or union members in advance.

Favor instant runoff voting to correct the defects in plurality voting and encourage more voter participation and a wider selection of candidates. Would eliminate the wasted vote syndrome and the spoiler effect of 3rd party candidates. See fairvote.org for more information.

Strongly support term limits for all federal congressional seats to introduce competition and citizen participation. See U.S. Term Limits for more information.

Creating an Open Electoral Process
by John B. Anderson, fairvote.org

Gun Control Laws

Gun control laws should be more accurately labeled victim disarmament laws since criminals will always be able to obtain guns illegally; only law abiding Americans will be restricted and inconvenienced by gun laws. Preserve second amendment and gun ownership rights. Support repeal of ineffective and unconstitutional federal gun laws. Encourage personal responsibility, accountability and public safety by focusing police efforts on violent criminals who use guns or other weapons to commit crimes.

Gun Owners of New Hampshire Election Guide and Candidate Grades

Gun Owners of America

Gun Owners of New Hampshire

Foreign Policy / Military Issues

War will exist until that distant day when the conscientious objector enjoys the same reputation and prestige that the warrior does today.
John F. Kennedy

Dan Belforti's foreign policy vision is guided by the wisdom expressed in Thomas Jefferson's credo: "Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none."

Accordingly, Belforti supports the concepts of a national defense based on strategic independence and diplomacy based on prudent nonintervention. The past and present administrations' attempts to unilaterally police the world has increased the likelihood of terrorist attacks against the U.S while decreasing our national security and moral standing.

President Eisenhower, in his final address to the nation before leaving office in 1961, issues a rather extraordinary warning to the American people that the country "must guard against unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist."

For more detail on positions, please contact the campaign at vote@belforti.org.

Frequently Asked Questions

What role should or could Congress play in further addressing corporate governance/accountability issues?

What specifically could or would you do to lower the cost New Hampshire businesses are paying for health care coverage?

What environmental regulations do you consider to be a burden on business and how would you lessen that burden? Which regulations are working?

Name a labor law or policy you would change and how that change would affect business and labor.

If you could accomplish one specific thing in Congress to aid New Hampshire businesses over the next two years, what would it be and why?

What role should the government have in promoting energy efficiency?

Should we open parts of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas exploration? How about federal lands in the Rocky Mountain Front?

The president's energy plan calls for an expansion of nuclear power. Do you support that? Please explain.

Congress has chosen not to require increased average fuel efficiency for motor vehicles, now 27.5 miles per gallon for passenger vehicles and 20.7 mpg for SUVs, minivans and light trucks. Do you support a higher standard for SUVs and minivans? (If so, please specify.) How about for passenger cars? (Please specify.)

The Senate energy bill includes a requirement for utilities to produce 10 percent of their electricity by 2019 from renewable fuels such as wind, solar energy, and forest and agricultural wastes. Should electricity suppliers be required to increase their proportion of renewable energy generation? What should the minimum standard be, if any?

Does the federal government have an obligation or interest to maintain a national railroad system? Please explain.

Do you agree with the following proposals from Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta: Ending federal operating subsidies. Allowing competition for passenger rail. Making states more responsible for paying for train service. Replacing Amtrak as owner of the Boston-to-Washington Northeast Corridor?

Are there other changes you would propose with respect to Amtrak specifically or passenger rail service in general?

Briefly discuss your proposed solutions for education funding, and please indicate your position on any broad-based tax to address this matter:

Briefly explain why you would or would not support a constitutional amendment to keep the Supreme Court out of legislative issues:

Briefly explain how you feel about the court-ordered redistricting plan, and what changes you would like to see made if any:

What is the Objectivist view of Libertarianism?



What role should or could Congress play in further addressing corporate governance/accountability issues?

There are already laws against fraud, which need to be enforced to protect and compensate employees and shareholders. Congress should ensure adequate funding for prosecution of fraud and violations of public disclosure laws. Set an example for accurate accounting practices by significantly increasing the quality of federal budget accounting practices. What role should or could Congress play in addressing the issue of excessive executive compensation? None. It's a matter best left to the corporation and its shareholders to increase shareholder value and maintain the competitiveness of American corporations.
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What specifically could or would you do to lower the cost New Hampshire businesses are paying for health care coverage?

Restore market forces to the health care industry to significantly lower costs to New Hampshire citizens and businesses. I'd propose tax-free medical savings accounts for individuals and small businesses. Providing the opportunity for a business or individual to set aside funds for medical needs without the burden of taxation will reintroduce price comparison shopping for non-emergency procedures, providing an incentive for health care providers to cut costs in order to attract customers and maintain profitability.
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What environmental regulations do you consider to be a burden on business and how would you lessen that burden? Which regulations are working?

One such regulation is wetlands protection. You cannot dump leaves and yard debris on your own property if it is deemed a wetland. It requires an engineering study, done at landowner expense, the marking off of the wetland border, and the restriction to not dump within 50 feet of this mark. Laws that provide for protection from real polluters and enable compensation from the polluting parties are appropriate.
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Name a labor law or policy you would change and how that change would affect business and labor.

This is a state issue. I support current efforts to make NH a right-to-work state, without compulsory unionization or automatic withdrawals for union fees. Ending these practices would create more jobs and stimulate business growth. Also, minimum wage laws hurt our economy and they harm the most vulnerable members of society without skills or education. Young people and those just starting careers in the job market to make second incomes need jobs and training.
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If you could accomplish one specific thing in Congress to aid New Hampshire businesses over the next two years, what would it be and why?

The best, most direct action that would aid New Hampshire businesses is the reduction of the federal tax burden, for both individuals and businesses. I'd work to lower the income tax and the capital gains tax rates. I'd vote to extend the moratorium on Internet taxation and double the current tax exemption for employer-provided educational assistance. I'd also vote to permanently repeal the death tax to ensure family businesses continue to the next generation.
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What role should the government have in promoting energy efficiency?

As a candidate for U.S. Congress, I will have to swear an oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution, if I am elected. The Tenth Amendment says "powers not delegated to the United States by the constitution are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." The Federal government has no Constitution authority to "promote energy efficiency" and futile attempts usually amount to subsidizing one energy source and prohibiting another and other unnecessary meddling that harms energy production and conservation. If you want energy efficiency, repeal the prohibition on renewable energy sources like hemp, which can be used to make ethanol, and stop subsidies for oil companies and other corporate welfare recipients. Private citizens, coordinated by the free market, will better handle energy efficiency.
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Should we open parts of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas exploration? How about federal lands in the Rocky Mountain Front?

No. Even successful drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge will have little impact on the global oil market, which determines prices, and only provide approximately 6 months of America's present consumption. To ride all our hopes on drilling in the arctic and elsewhere to achieve "energy independence" is illusory at best. My preference with our domestic oil reserves is to save them for our future. A much better solution is to reinvigorate the vanishing American farmlands to grow hemp, which can be used to produce ethanol to power our automobiles.
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The president's energy plan calls for an expansion of nuclear power. Do you support that? Please explain.

The main problem with nuclear power is that it is one of the biggest recipients of government subsidies. I oppose all direct and indirect government participation in the nuclear energy industry, including subsidies, research and development funds, guaranteed loans, waste disposal subsidies, and federal uranium enrichment facilities. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission should be abolished; full liability -- not government agencies -- should regulate nuclear power. The Price-Anderson Act, through which the government limits liability for nuclear accidents and furnishes partial payment at taxpayer expense, should be repealed. Nuclear energy should be denationalized and the industry's assets transferred to the private sector. I believe in a free market, and energy is no exception.
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Congress has chosen not to require increased average fuel efficiency for motor vehicles, now 27.5 miles per gallon for passenger vehicles and 20.7 mpg for SUVs, minivans and light trucks. Do you support a higher standard for SUVs and minivans? (If so, please specify.) How about for passenger cars? (Please specify.)

No. A better solution to improve average fuel efficiency is for governments to end subsidies to the oil companies paid for with federal and state income taxes and local property taxes. The cost of building and maintaining roads could be paid at the pump through a road user fee. When the cost of gasoline is allowed to reach the price level at which it reflects the true cost of driving, consumers will have a financial incentive to purchase fuel-efficient cars. There is no free lunch in this world and our subsidizing the cost of gasoline with income and property taxes has created a higher demand for oil than the unfettered free market would lead us to. The resulting decrease in demand due to more accurate gasoline prices would lower the cost per barrel and amount of imported oil, decrease air pollution, reduce traffic congestion, delay the need and expense of building more highways and reduce greenhouse gases.
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The Senate energy bill includes a requirement for utilities to produce 10 percent of their electricity by 2019 from renewable fuels such as wind, solar energy, and forest and agricultural wastes. Should electricity suppliers be required to increase their proportion of renewable energy generation? What should the minimum standard be, if any?

Libertarians' belief in free markets precludes our advocating such requirements. Our platform reads: "We oppose all government control of energy pricing, allocation, and production, such as that imposed by the Department of Energy, state public utility commissions, and state pro-rationing agencies. We oppose all government subsidies for energy research, development, and operation."

I suggest we create market incentives to use non-polluting energy sources by holding polluters financially accountable for the emissions and environmental damage that they produce during production or consumption. Eliminate corporate welfare subsidies to oil companies and other energy producers that pollute without compensation to create fair competition with non-polluting, renewable energy sources, such as ethanol made from hemp or corn oil.
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Does the federal government have an obligation or interest to maintain a national railroad system? Please explain.

No, the US Constitution does not authorize such a system, unless it can be shown to be critical for the national defense. Given the large network of highways in this country, it would be a stretch to claim such a need. It is in the nation's interest to promote the private ownership and usage of all transportation systems in the furtherance of trade and free travel. The existing rail system should be auctioned off to competing private transport companies, which would reduce prices and increase efficiency and accountability (see the history of the AMTRAK monstrosity to see how a system should NOT be run), as well as the removal of government favors to the transportation industry.
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Do you agree with the following proposals from Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta:

Ending federal operating subsidies.

Yes.

Allowing competition for passenger rail.

Yes.

Making states more responsible for paying for train service.

No. Government ownership of rail systems at the federal or state level is not ideal. We need to have government out of the rail business, by privatizing all government-owned railroads. The end users of a system, the customers, should be responsible for paying for it. Free competition in transportation systems drives down costs and increases quality of service from government enforced monopolies and special interest legislative protection.

Replacing Amtrak as owner of the Boston-to-Washington Northeast Corridor?

Yes. Privatize Amtrak. Sell it to the highest bidder.
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Are there other changes you would propose with respect to Amtrak specifically or passenger rail service in general?

Yes. Government interference in transportation is characterized by monopolistic restriction, corruption and gross inefficiency. Libertarians call for the dissolution of all government agencies concerned with transportation, including the Department of Transportation, and the transfer of their legitimate functions to competitive private firms.
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Briefly discuss your proposed solutions for education funding, and please indicate your position on any broad-based tax to address this matter:

Allow parents to choose private or other public schools using school vouchers or universal education credits. Private schools are higher in quality, lower in cost and more accountable to parents than government run public schools. Savings generated through opting out of the local government schools will lower property taxes and eliminate the need for new statewide taxes. School choice will increase innovation and quality since the private sector has a financial incentive to please its customers (parents and students). Good teachers would be paid higher salaries since schools would be competing for the best talent in order to improve quality and attract new students. We must remove the burden of locally funded federal mandates. Education funding is more accountable and fiscally prudent when controlled at the local level. I do not support an income tax of any kind as this would hurt the NH economy and drive out small businesses and jobs. I do not support a statewide property tax, interest/dividends tax, sales tax or business enterprise tax. I support legalized slot machines to generate revenue for school voucher program.
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Briefly explain why you would or would not support a constitutional amendment to keep the Supreme Court out of legislative issues:

I would support a constitutional amendment to keep the supreme court out of legislative issues. There must be a separation of powers between the legislative, judicial and executive branches of government in order maintain a balance of government power.
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Briefly explain how you feel about the court-ordered redistricting plan, and what changes you would like to see made if any:

The redistricting plan lowers the number of state house districts from 195 to 88, forcing out representation for many small towns and merging them with larger towns and cities. This generally goes against the very representational system New Hampshire has had traditionally and could lead us to an over-centralized state government that emphasizes the cities over the towns, similar to Massachusetts. There may be a silver lining for freedom, however, in that independent, 3rd party candidates should have a greater chance of electoral success since residents have several votes to cast in which they would be more likely to support an alternative candidate in addition to their favored major party candidate(s).
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What is the Objectivist view of Libertarianism?

Please visit The Objectivist Center for an article regarding this.
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