philip berg

libertarian for congress

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Many people tell me that I should run for a lower office first. I ask them; who is more qualified, a career Politician born into a family of politicians or a cabinet makers son who has had solid experience in government, business, and nonprofits?

Born Baltimore Maryland June 1954
Migrated to San Francisco June 1988

Education

1960-1972

Baltimore City Public Schools

1972-1976

Washington University, St. Louis
Majored in Economics and Biology

1976-1979

Johns Hopkins School of Public Health
Master of Science in Environmental Health Engineering

Work Experience

1980-1988

Industrial Hygienist working first in a trade Association, then various US government positions and ending with a private consulting firm in Oakland.

1989-1998

Operated the Environmental consulting firm Berg C.I.H. in San Francisco.I sold the company to the employees in late 1998 in order to concentrate on recovering from illness and blindness.

1998-Present

Volunteer work at Project Inform
Rehabilation training for Visual Impairment
Active in the Libertarian Party of San Francisco

Community Activism

1969-1970

Baltimore Tutorial Project. Tutored elementary school kids in East Baltimore.

1972-1974

Canoe Guide Boundary Waters Canoe Area -Quetico Provincial Park, Ely Minnesota.

1972

Participated actively in George McGovern's victory in the Maryland Primary. Resumed active participation in St Louis in the fall.

1974-1975

Missouri Public Interest Resarch Group. Active in campaign to prevent the building of the Calavares Nuclear Power Plant

1975-1976

King Louis Gardeners. Active in planting organic gardens in back yards all over the St. Louis area.

1977-1978

Director of what is now the Chase Brexton Clinic. I took the clinic from it's founding location in the basement of the MCC Church to the rented facilities of the then Gay Community Center and then to our own floor in our own building, the GLTCC of Baltimore. I was active in raising the downpayment for the building, including helping to organizing outlandishly successful After Hours fundraisers in the empty warehouse that was to become the GLCCB. Both institutions survive to this day. Physicians that were recruited to the Clinic from Hopkins during my tenure went on to play major positive roles in the AIDS epidemic.

1997-2001 and 2005

Volunteered on the National HIV and AIDS Hotline at Project Inform in San Francisco.

My Journey from Democrat to Libertarian

Like most Jewish kids in Baltimore I was raised by very liberal Democrats. We lived in the city but our house was near on old growth forest preserved by covenant and hilliness. The oak trees there are said to be older than Baltimore. I grew to love Nature.

In 1959 the husband of a very close friend of my family was laid off at Bethlahem Steel. She was verry upset. I resolved then to learn why such bad things happen. My father lost his job in 1962, and this also made me determined to learn why there was so much economic trouble with the adults around me.

Some books had a powerful effect. The Grapes of Wrath only added to my determination to learn about economics. Silent Spring begun my own concern with the environmental movement. Unfortunately at a very tender age my parents allowed me to read Adolph Eichmans biography. This led to a lifelong quest to understandhow how a civilized country could descend into hell.

Lyndon Johnson promised the Great Society when I was a young man. When I returned from College to Baltimore I enrolled in the School of Public Health. I remember clearly it was September of 1976 and I was swimming in the Hopkins Alumni Pool. The East Baltimore Campus where the pool is located is in the Ghetto. Looking over the fence of the pool one could see the people sweltering in the run down rowhouses across the street. I wondered to myself why after all these years of Great Society, with Baltimore getting a lions share of every Federal program, things seemed to be getting worse for so many. The factories were closing left and right and the misery was spreading.

I had graduated cum Laude in Economics but still didn't feel I understood why things were going so bad for so many in Baltimore. In 1984 I working for the Federal Government as an Industrial Hygienist. Things were going from bad to worse for so many around me. I met a young man that summer in the Lost and Found, a bar in Washington. He was a gtraduate student in Philosophy at George Mason. He introduced ne to the works of Hyak, Mises and Rothbard, economists of the Austrian School of Economics. (See mises.org).

The Austrian economics made a lot of sense to me and over time I have seen that it explains and predicts what is happening with the economy. The suffering, the poverty, and all that goes with it, is not a necessary part of the human condition. It can be much better than this. It took me a while, as a liberal Democrat, to take what I had learned from Rothbard and Mises, and change my political identity, Giving up the dream that a loving and caring government can and will someday make things better was difficult. We all identify with our dreams and perhaps it is what helps us deal with the realities of life and feel good about ourselves. I have adopted a dream that liberty will bring us peace and economic prosperity and justice. Maybe it is just a dream, but after much study and consideration, I have come to the conclusion that liberty, true liberty, has a much greater chance of making a decent and peaceful world, much freer of want, hunger,dsisease ignorance, violence and war.

The Libertarian movement has as it's basis a pledge. The pledge is neverr to espouse or indulge in the initiation of violence.(See the bottom of the Home Page) From this simple rule all of the philosphy emerges. Please consider how this simple idea can lead to a more peaceful, and cooperative world locally and globally.

You don't have to give up your dream to consider Liberty. Even if you want to hold onto the dream of a good government someday, you could vote Libertarian at the federal level so that money and power could flow to the fifty states. At least the States don't make war.

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