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Breaking Down Libertarianism with Tom Anderson

“I believe in individual liberty, free markets, and human dignity.” ~ Thomas Anderson

Thomas Anderson is currently running for State Representative. On November 8, 2022, Edward Giannattasio, Robert Leadbeter, and Thomas Anderson are running in the general election for Pennsylvania House of Representatives District 109.  

Q: What made you run for State Representative? 

A: “Well… I think that our country overall, and Pennsylvania in particular, is headed in the wrong direction. We have been increasing the size of government and the scope of what government can do way past what the Constitution allows. So, I think most of what [the] government does today is unconstitutional. The reason why we have a constitution is to restrict government, so it remains useful and productive for Americans and Pennsylvanians. So, every time the government exceeds their powers, they generally do things that hurt us. And one way they do that is through central planning so that they think they are smarter than the average person. Even if they have the best intentions and think they can help people, they often end up with unintended consequences that end up being worse for people. And so, I believe in distributed knowledge and [that] everyone knows more about their own life, goals, capacities, than the government does. So, people should make choices for themselves. If everyone is making choices in their own interest, it’s going to end up being in the best interest of everyone collectively. So, when the government interferes with that and tells you that you can’t do everything in your best interest, it actually hurts all of us.” 

He shared upon other concerns such as The World Economic Forum proposing this “great reset idea” which a lot of countries around the world, including the United States, are getting involved in. Food security and how dairy, meat, produce farms are being affected is also a great concern because the resources of many citizens are getting wasted and thrown away.  

He stated, “The only reason we have a food security issue is because the government got involved in the first place. So, we are spending our money to create problems then using our money to supposedly fix these problems. We need a new voice in Harrisburg, and in Washington. That is a lot harder to get through to Washington so I might as well start with the state…”  

The mindset for Harrisburg is to bring on the idea of “free-markets, individual liberty, rolling back taxes and regulations, bringing back the prosperity we used to have here.” Another concern is for the gas companies that were pushed out of the state due to taxes and regulations, which affected the Columbia County Landowners Coalition. Anderson and his father created the coalition in 2010, which was a union of landowners to ensure the safest, profitable leasing deals for the county which allowed them to receive almost $40 million. Those leases have all expired now and the gas companies have nothing to do with that now due to taxes and regulations implemented by the government. He believes renewing these leases and allowing the people to produce their own energy is best.  

Q: What kind of person do you want to be viewed as? When people see the name “Thomas Anderson”, what do you want them to think? 

A: “I have a core set of values and principles. I am very consistent with them. I feel like I am transparent, and I let people know exactly what I believe so there is no doubt when they send me to Harrisburg, and they aren’t going to be surprised by what I do. I am not going to flip on them.”  

Q: Do you have a strong following? 

A: “Yes, absolutely. When I first decided to run as a Libertarian, I thought it would go again like my last run did. I ran back in 2010. I ran against David Millard who is the current state representative who is now retiring… I got like 15% of the vote which is actually a decent amount for a Libertarian. So, I figured it would be tough running again. But, at least, with his retirement, it wouldn’t be going against an incumbent and usually people vote for the incumbent. So, at least this time, it would be against a fresh Republican.”  

In 2019, the elimination straight ticket voting occurred. Now, a voter has to go through the individual offices and decide who they are going to vote for. That gives Anderson a big leg-up because all the Republicans and Democrats who might have just done straight ticket voting will now his name and possibly choose him.  

A lot of his support is coming from some Republican leadership and those who ran previously in recent primaries against Leadbeter. Anderson was told two-thirds of the Republican committee are on his side. He is relying on the large flow of support from the Republicans and Libertarians of Columbia County.  

Q: If you became State Representative, what initial course of action would you take?  

A: “I think, in January, when I would be inaugurated the most important thing is going to be the economy. I believe, by then, we will be deep into a recession with very high inflation, and this is going to be weighing on Pennsylvanians strongly. If Doug Mastriano is elected as governor, he will agree with me that we form a plan to reduce taxes and regulations upon businesses and individuals. I would like to eliminate the property tax entirely, which is especially important for seniors who are facing this high inflation and their fixed income is not going up to meet the inflation rate. So, they are at risk of losing their homes. 

Farms [are of importance] too. We have this food security issue as I was saying before. Right now, farms are getting shut down because of taxes and regulations. Some of which include mandates and lockdowns during covid time, as well as fertilizer restrictions and other environmental regulations like emissions run off use of pesticides. [These are] things that farmers need to provide the food. They have gone bankrupt, and we are losing farms. We need to protect our farmers. Eliminating property tax will help farmers, obviously, because they have a lot of land and are paying a high amount of tax.”  

He also is passionate about preventing the “rain tax”. This is the idealism of taxing landowners on an acreage basis for how much rain falls on it.  

“So, eliminating property tax, fighting this federal “rain tax”, reducing regulations (generally against businesses and farmers in particular), and then bringing back the energy companies will help to revitalize Pennsylvania and prevent us from succumbing to the recession and inflation that is going to be affecting the rest of the country.”  

Q: What major career changes would occur if you switched from the role of Constable to State Representative? 

A: “Well, my current constable role is part-time. I mostly do peacekeeping and a little bit of service like notices for evictions and warrants only when they need me. It’s a very part-time role. I’m generally down at the university peacekeeping Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night for like 5 hours a night generally. So, I would have to quit being a constable because it’s a conflict of interest being a legislator and a constable… 

I would regret not being able to do the constable role, but I believe that I would have a greater effect on the public if I were acting as a legislator. Maybe, I’ll get re-elected as a constable after I quit being a legislator.”  

Q: Have you always been a passionate Libertarian? 

A: “Yes, I would say since high school. My first vote was for Harry Browne in 1996 for President. That’s when I was 18. Harry Browne was an economist and really put things into perspective for me. Other influences were Ron Paul who was a congressman at the time back then before he ran for President during my time.”  

Other remarks were shared about Ronald Reagan and Barry Goldwater as figures of inspiration to this passion for Libertarianism. By the time high school arrived for Anderson, he was very involved in politics, and he knew immediately Libertarian spoke to his heart.  

Q: Do you think being involved in politics is an important aspect of life?  

A: “Yes, I think you have to, but I didn’t used to as a kid. Like when I was a kid, I thought why would anyone need to even worry about politics. Haven’t we solved those issues already? Haha…”  

Anderson went onto explain the need to be involved because there are still a lot of issues that need to still be solved. Innocence and ignorance play together when it comes to being involved in society. Some people come to terms with how their lives are and just accept it with no will to make a change. Yet, the government is always changing, and society grows daily. Sometimes, people are ignorant about change, but being involved in politics pushes for that needed change. Whether people may like it or not, people are subject to be a part of that change.  

Q: Why are Libertarians less inclined to win elections? What is “lesser evil syndrome”? 

A: “Third parties are always at a disadvantage because one of the major two parties will win. They must vote against the major party they don’t like most. So, what happens is called the lesser evil syndrome. You have an evil candidate on the left and an evil candidate on the right, and all you have left is to figure out which candidate is less evil and choose them versus the greater evil. The problem is if that is how you work, you’re going to get evil every time.”  

The winner-take-all voting systems also hurts the chance of a third-party win. Society tends to look down upon the third party due to needing to take down their competitor. 

Q: What are some issues in the world that you have a strong opinion on? 

A:_”I think that tyranny in general is bad for anyone, no matter where it occurs. I do not like to see tyrannical societies in general like Venezuela and places like that. And, of course, how societies are becoming more tyrannical across the globe. Right now, there’s this war in Russia and Ukraine. We have this narrative that Russia is the aggressor and Ukraine is the victim. We have to protect Ukraine because why? I am not really sure why… So, anyways I don’t agree with us sending our troops, our money, our resources to places like Russia and Ukraine where we don’t really have an interest there… We need to recall them [The National Guard]. We should not be interfering in any other countries’ business.”  

Read more about Thomas Anderson at Anderson109.com or in “Self-sufficient and Healthy Living with Tom Anderson” on BU The Voice. The General Election is November 8, 2022.