September 29th, 2018 Party Conference

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Platform Discussion

We brainstormed platform ideas. These ideas will serve as the basis for further discussion and expansion.

Quality Health care for all including dental and mental health care (expanded medicare for all)

  • Implement community based mental health and wellness programs for those who need it
  • We are already paying for everyone
  • Merge VA into Medicare for All
  • Cuts administrative costs and profits of the private system
  • Retrain administrative workers if needed
  • Negotiate drug and other medical prices
  • Impose consistent prices
  • Using compulsive licensing of patents for drugs
  • Ending evergreen patents
  • Having better funding for drug research that shifts reward system to target health problems not profits
  • Better research into the effectiveness of drugs


  • Putting Students First
  • Innovation in funding that reduces per student disparities in funding. Raising the bottom
  • Encouraging critical thinking
  • Maximizing the tools available to teachers
  • Empowering teachers

Criminal Justice

  • Decriminalizing victimless crimes
  • Focus on restoration, rehabilitation & education not punishment
  • End Civil asset forfeiture
  • Fair principles and wages for prison labor
  • No disenfranchisement of prisoners. No taxation without representation
  • Adequately fund pubic defenders
  • Community policing & end arrest/citation quotas
  • No private prisons
  • Train police in conflict resolution, make them peace officers not police officers
  • Make police files public automatically
  • No privacy for police while on the job
  • End cops being above the law
  • Do not break the law to enforce the law

No eminent domain for private profit

Workers Rights

  • Pro-union, card check not vote
  • OSHA on every work site including government. Keep safe for all involved.

Public Transportation

  • Fund MBTA and other public bus systems so they can expand quality, reliability and service
  • Maintain roads so they are safe
  • End tolls & surveillance on the Pike, Tobin bridge and Boston tunnels

Government Funding and Taxation

  • Use systems thinking and true accounting

Housing & Homelessness

  • We have an affordability problem
  • More cost effective to provide housing for people who are homeless
  • Incentivize keeping housing owned by people in the community, not for use as a speculative investment
    • Transaction tax paid by non-occupants?
  • Improve renters rights: better recourse
    • Fund outreach to renters and owners about their rights and obligations


  • End the drug war: Decriminalize ala Portugal. Focus on addiction as a public health issue.
  • Fund Needle exchange programs and programs to help people to deal with addiction
  • Treat addiction as a disease not a crime
  • Continue to support the legalization of cannabis and its use for those it helps
  • End drug testing for government programs

National Security

  • End TSA: No more security theater
  • End the wars

Data Privacy: Protecting the privacy of the individual, not the state.

  • Discard information once you are done processing it.
  • What of GDPR should be here? Not right to be forgotten.
  • Stop gathering of license plate/surveillance data or expire after X weeks. Do not share with private entities.
  • Retain public data locally.
  • Body/police surveillance camera data must be available by the accused at a minimum


  • People first; end corporate subsidies
  • Measure the people’s economy, not the stockmarket
  • Honest accounting that measures the true benefits and costs of the commonwealth
    • Use these metrics to make better judgements about government policy
  • Government policy should promote competition not monopoly

Right of Repair/You own what you purchased

  • Software/media you paid for and download cannot be revoked
  • Cannot deny someone legal process using software.
  • Lock you out of your house/reposes your car w/o legal decision
  • Should not be a felony to modify or examine the software/hardware you purchased
  • Companies should not be able to take back stuff you already paid for
  • Copyrighted works should eventually become part of the public commons (No Mickey Mouse Law)


  • All data paid for by the public should be on-line and machine readable/searchable (with personal privacy exceptions)
    • That includes all branches of government
    • No scanned documents without OCR
  • Reduce the time for agencies to respond to requests to 10 days
  • Consolidate oversight and enforcement of FOIA into one separate agency
    • Under gov appointed by gov/elected by the people? (look at OCPF?)
    • Change from legal process to automatic fines for when out of compliance of the law
    • Use fines pay for bringing agencies into compliance technologically
      • This saves tax payers money, simplifies the process
    • Agency would have regulatory power and can set guidelines/rules (technologies/vendors that have worked)
    • Agency can review rules/tech of other agencies and call them out accountable for non-compliance


  • Make Massachusetts be a sanctuary state
  • Abolish ICE
  • Establish a path to citizenship for all immigrants
  • No taxation without representation; limited voting rights
  • Should be a judicial process for deportation with true due process
  • Honor agreements regarding asylum seekers and treat them with dignity and due process
  • Streamline process to move from one student to worker visa status
  • Immunity (amnesty?) for immigrants reporting crime

Adopted Resolution on Sex Worker Rights

After making a presentation on the history of sex workers, Desmond Ravenstone proposed the following platform statement:

Consistent with our belief in an open society and individual autonomy, the Massachusetts Pirate Party supports the full decriminalization of consensual sex work, with commercial sex enterprises to be treated like other businesses, and sex workers assured of free expression and free association to organize for their rights, safety and dignity.

We oppose both sex trafficking and the conflation of sex work with trafficking and other forms of coercion, and agree that sex worker organizations need to be involved in efforts to address trafficking.

This proposal was adopted without objection.

What to focus on going forward? Discussion

networking with other organizing

  • masscann / aclu
  • massmesh

open disc with rival interests

  • healthy debate
  • who dont agree
  • who agree
  • focus on: discussion vs. an argument

communications -- a platform milestone

  • not just irc..
  • get on and become members, and discuss.
  • is it riot chat? is it tech?
  • geography is important, using librarys (or other) for meetups
  • Proposed: October Democracy tech meet
  • evaluate catagories/features of a given solution
  • discord
  • hangouts
  • riot
  • catagories
  • voting
  • video/voice conference
  • streaming
  • barrier to participate

observations: what do we focus on?

  • most pressuring issue concerning you
  • net neutrality, housing
  • drm
  • sex worker rights && expanding pirate party
  • immigration, school, community
  • housing
  • policing, accountability, body cams
  • inequality, fair access to resources re: food justice

Attendance Statistics

  • 12 people attended in all
  • 5 activists, 2 supporters, 1 new member, 4 new participants
  • 10 people participated in the discussion, 2 people observed
  • 10 men, 2 women
  • 4 people of color