Press Release: 08-03-98
Contact: Marc Perkel
309 North Jefferson #220
Springfield Mo. 65802
Use Email fax
http://www.perkel.com/congress - Web Site
firstname.lastname@example.org - eMail
The primary is over and the general election begins on August 5th. Many of you in the media know little or nothing about who I am and what I stand for. This release is for informational purposes so that you can get a sense of who the Democratic candidate for Congress is. For those of you who want more information, go to my web site and check it out. I am a prolific writer and have several hundred pages of online opinions about many important issues. I probably have more online information than any other political candidate for Congress. Feel free to call me anytime to discuss any issue.
Who is Marc Perkel?
Democratic Candidate for 7th District Congress
I was born October 10th 1955 in Wheeling West Virginia. I am 42 years old. I moved to the Ozarks in June of 1975 and had lived in the West Plains area for several years before moving to Springfield in 1980. I am a high school graduate and I have no formal education beyond high school. However, I have many skills which are self taught.
I have always had a talent for science and math. I was taught mathematics by my grandmother when I was three years old and was doing multiplication and division by the time I entered kindergarten. I developed an early interest in electronics and was building radios by the age of nine. At the age of thirteen I was learning calculus and had got to a point where there was no one I had contact with that knew more math than I did. I switched over to learning electronics which I believed had a more practical future than theoretical mathematics. At the age of sixteen I built my first computer out of pinball machine relays and got my first job after school in electronic repair.
I graduated high school in 1973 just as the draft for the Vietnam War was ending. The War caused me to have a fundamental distrust of the government. I believe then and still do that we were in Vietnam for all the wrong reasons and this belief has played an important role in shaping my early political views.
Coming from a family of limited means, higher education wasn't really an option for me. I also had been frustrated by the slow pace of learning in schools. The educational system isn't really set up to allow a person who has unusual mental abilities to learn at an accelerated pace. I moved out on my own at the age of seventeen and took a number of different jobs in the electronic repair and design fields. I had a First Class FCC license with Radar endorsement and at the tender age of 17 was licensed by the government of the United States to repair any kind of transmitter that existed. I was licensed to fix kinds of equipment I'd never seen before. After working on a variety of equipment including consumer electronics, medical equipment, marine electronics, and scientific test equipment, I ended up making a living for several years fixing CB radios.
In 1975 I moved to Missouri to live in little hippie communities out in the woods around West Plains. It was part of the "Back to the Land" movement, living a traditional lifestyle and raising your own food, the idea being to be prepared in case of nuclear war or the collapse of the government. It's interesting that today's militia movements share many of the same attitudes towards the government that the hippies had 30 years ago.
In 1979 I bought my first real computer. It was a kit with parts from several manufacturers and I had to not only assemble it, but write an operating system by inputting machine code, byte by byte, from front panel switches. This was to be my education in computer programming, design, and computer repair. By the time I got it working, I had my education. I got my first computer related job in 1981 building a custom computer to control a four color krypton laser for laser shows. I designed the control hardware interface and wrote the operating system and the control software.
In 1984 I opened a computer store in Springfield called Computer Tyme. Two years later I opened a second store in West Plains. I also started developing utility software that I sold as "shareware". In 1990 I decided to get out of the retail business and concentrate on the software business. I sold the West Plains store to the employees and evolved the Springfield store into a software only enterprise.
As Computer Tyme Software Lab I developed a variety of network control and menuing utilities that are used to manage large computer networks. Most all my business is national and international. My customers are some of the worlds largest companies. I sell software tools to the information services departments of companies to the people who have to maintain and control thousands of computers that are used by their employees. I write tools for the nerds in the back room.
My Political and Legal Battles
I have always been politically interested but had never run for office. I met Mel Hancock in 1982 and was inspired by his views about taxation, freedom and government. That freedom was inversely proportional to the tax rate. In 1987 the City of Springfield tried to pass a 1/2 cent sales tax. I decided to oppose this tax because I became aware that they knew it was much more money than was needed and that they were having a hard time thinking about ways to spend the money. There was no opposition to this tax at the time.
I ran an inexpensive campaign, costing only $357, against this tax and got a lot of free attention in the news. As a result the tax was rejected by a 2/3rds majority vote and saved the taxpayers of Greene County about $12 million dollars a year in 1987 money. Two years later they passed a 1/4 cent sales tax that has been renewed every three years since. What I learned from this experience is that one man can make a difference. And I learned that if you are smart, that you can make a difference with very little effort.
In 1992 Greene County put another tax issue on the ballot. It was a 1/4 cent sales tax to build a new courthouse. I didn't think it was a good idea to have a permanent sales tax to fund a single building project and I opposed the tax. This time I spent $495 which got enough attention to cause a lawyer group to spend $15,000 to counter my campaign. The tax again went down in flames, but this tax had a bigger long term price. By standing against higher taxes, I made an enemy out of the Greene County Court System and they would later get even when I got divorced. I still believe that I did the right thing. The courthouse was built without the tax and cost $8 million instead of the $24 million that would have been spent had the tax passed.
I got together with my ex-wife in 1986 and married her in 1989. I became a step father to her daughter Jessica (the Princess) when she was 8 years old. I was married for 5 years before the relationship fell apart. It took two years to get divorced and the legal battles continue. The divorce process gave me a unique insight into how corrupt our court systems are and led to my involuntary legal education and my eventual run of Congress.
The divorce process involved crooked lawyers, the law firm of Wear and Sharp, and judges and commissioners that broke the rules with impunity. After going through three law firms I ended up with a judgement that was greater than 100% of my net worth. Some people would think that's rather unfair for a five year marriage with no kids. Most women are fortunate to collect support for their children. But sometimes a person has to stand up for what's right and there's a price for doing so. Greene County has already taken my farm and is in the process of taking everything else I own. So far I've successfully defended myself.
I am not like most people who roll over and die when going up against the system. I am an unusual person and I have always had unusual abilities. These "gifts" have allowed me to learn new things and adapt much faster than normal. As a result I fired all my lawyers, got the law books, got on the internet, and learned the law. I have become a formidable legal force and even though I haven't yet achieved victory, I have not been defeated as I would have been had I not taken matters into my own hands. If the courts had their way with me, I would be at least homeless and bankrupt, or doing time in jail.
It may still end up that way. Greene County has levied against my home acting partially on an unsigned and undated order of the court written by an unknown author. I may become homeless before the election. But Greene County will have to break the law in order to take my property because they do not have a judgement that I am behind on to execute against me.
Although I don't have legal victories in this battle with the courts, I have some political victories. I created a web site called People before Lawyers that is a resource web site for legal reform. This web site has been visited by thousands of people all over the world and has been a point of organizing and exchanging of information on reforming the judicial system. This site has helped bring together legal activist from within and without the law profession who believe in honest and ethical courts.
Through this web site I hooked up with Bob Pilger who founded an organization called Parents United as One. Parents United as One focuses on custody, support, and child visitation issues and had a lot of problems with crooked lawyers and lazy judges. Working with Bob and Parents United as One, and a lot of good folks in the Missouri House and Senate, managed to pass Senate Bill 910 that makes significant changes in the Missouri Family Court System. These changes allow for a much faster method of getting custody issues through the courts without the requirement of having a lawyer.
This legislation took tens of millions of dollars out of the hands of crooked lawyers and put it back in the hands of families. And I'm personally proud to have played a role in making this happen. On August 28th this bill will become the law and the family court system will have changed. So even if these lawyers and judges succeed in taking everything I own and destroying me financially, I took more money from them than they could possibly take from me if I live 100 lifetimes. I have also altered how these family court judges operate on a day to day basis. So although they have a piece of my hide, I have a piece of their hide too. And I have demonstrated that you can in fact fight city hall and win and I believe that we as Americans will maintain our freedom only if we continue to fight and win against the forces of oppressive government.
I can no longer sit back and watch as the courts in Greene County cover up for crooked lawyers and lazy judges. I can't watch as the courts let lawyers turn families onto lawyer food. A family going through a divorce should not be an opportunity for law firms to get rich. The problem with the courts is that they are supposedly self regulating. But Self Regulation doesn't Work and it's Unconstitutional. That's why I feel strongly about restoring the checks and balance system and put the regulation of the courts under the executive branch of government.
National Political Battles
Besides local politics and fighting unfair local taxes, I have been active in national issues. I am a strong supporter of President Clinton. I think Bill Clinton may be our greatest president ever. I first heard in 1982 that Bill Clinton might some day run for president and I've been waiting for him ever since. In 1991 when he announced, I felt like I died and went to Heaven!
To support the election of President Clinton I accumulated the fax numbers of over 1000 newspapers and started writing Letters to the Editor. At first I was paying for it myself so I programmed the fax computers to send faxes during the night at the cheapest rates. In 1996 Sprint offered me their "Free Fridays" deal. This was too good to be true because I could fax for free on Fridays. Now I have 1000 email addresses and I can email for free any time I want.
Over the last six years I've faxed and emailed about 250,000 letters to the editor. I have been published in a lot of newspapers. I've made it into USA Today, San Francisco Chronicle, Chicago Sun Times, Dallas Morning News, Time Magazine, and many others. Most of the time I don't even know who or when my letters get published. But it's interesting to see where they end up. I got a letter from President Clinton thanking me for a letter he read in The Baxter Bulletin in Mountain Home Arkansas.
I also faxed Congress about issues. In 1993 I faxed 5000 letters to Congress supporting Clinton's tax increase. Although I am against taxes, I believed that it was crucial to balance the budget and I believed Clinton could do it, and I was right. That tax passed by one vote in the House and one vote in the Senate. I like to think I helped get that one vote and that maybe we have a surplus today because I helped make it happen. Now that we have a surplus we should first pay off the debt. That will give us a 23% tax cut by not having to pay interest on the debt. A real tax cut!
What this Campaign is About
People ask me why I'm running and if I have any chance of winning. As to my chances, I'm the underdog. I don't know if I have a chance against an incumbent with 100 times as much money as I do. Although Roy Blunt hasn't done anything great, he hasn't done anything seriously wrong either and his positions on the issues are similar to most of the people in this area. I am however the kind of guy who does very well with little resources. I beat two sales taxes for under $500 each. So if anyone can win with little or nothing, I'm the guy who can do it.
I originally filed to run for Congress to attract media attention to the corrupts acts of the local courts and the crooked lawyers they protect. If my candidacy leads to reform then I will have been successful no matter who wins. My life however has taken many unusual turns and it is as if fate has brought me to this point in time. I'm not a religious man, but if I were I would have to ask myself why reality is unfolding the way it is.
I'm not particularly interested in being in Congress. I'd rather work with computers than people. But I do have these unusual mental abilities and natural political skills. I have come to realize that if I were elected, even for one term, that I could do serious damage to the good ole boy insider network and put the Congress on a better track than it is now. I do have the ability to create serious reform all by myself and I am very concerned that if somebody doesn't do something that our future as a nation is in jeopardy.
Over the next 30 years this planet will make incredible advances in technology. We will advance more in the next 30 years than we did in the last 200 years. I am one of those people who have "the vision thing" and this is a rare quality. We are going to have computer networks that are thousands of times more powerful than we have today. We will have decoded and will be able to create custom life forms from common elements. We will be able to alter our DNA to correct genetic defects and eliminate whole catagories of degenerative diseases including old age itself. We're looking at life spans of over 150 years in our generation.
We are at a crossroad where we must clean house and deal with these issues before they become problems. This kind of technology can be a blessing or a curse and it depends on the ethical decisions we make in this generation. We must reclaim our courts as institutions that are here to serve the people rather than to serve the purposes of government against the people, or in the self interests of the lawyers who make up the courts. We can not go into a technologically advanced society without a rock solid justice system to protect the rights and privacy of the people who this government serves. We must ensure that the will of the people and the individual isn't sacrificed in the advancement of our technological capabilities.
In order to accomplish this, men of vision must step forward to lead the way into the future and ensure that we not only survive as a species, but that our survival includes a high quality of life for we humans that inhabit this world. For some reason I have been either blessed or cursed with this ability. And, by a strange set of coincidental events, I just happen to being the unopposed Democratic candidate for Congress. I am not egotistical enough to believe that I'm part of some master plan. But the coincidences are unusual enough that I can't rule it out either. All I know is that when I wake up in the morning, the reality I wake up to is stranger than the reality I woke up from.
Congressman Roy Blunt is a fine upstanding member of the community. He has dedicated his life to public service. I happen to believe that public service is a noble cause and that there is nothing wrong with being a career politician. Like any other profession, the longer you do it the better you get at it and experience is a quality that we need to appreciate rather than condemn.
The thing about Roy Blunt is that he's just like hundreds of other congressmen in both parties. They look alike, they talk alike, and they think alike. It seems that the system selects those kinds of people that we have come to know as the "typical politician". Congress is like going to a cheese store that sells 200 kinds of cheese and they all taste the same. Perhaps it is our fate to be stuck with form rather than substance. I'm my own man. I don't owe anyone anything. I don't owe my soul to any political party. I may be a Democrat, but they don't rule me. I haven't had to sell out to anyone to get where I am. I'm not taking money from the alchohol, tobbaco or firearms industry. I'm free, and I do what I think is best. I'm here because 43 years ago a condom broke and I've been trying to do the best I can under the circumstances ever since. I'm only the third generation in my family to walk upright.
I am someone who's not like anyone in Congress. I don't have the limitations it takes to fit the mold of a typical congressman. I am someone who is very different. I have a strong vision and I have the ability to bring this vision into reality. If I were elected into Congress, even for one term, I really believe that I could make fundamental changes in the way that our legislature conducts the business of the people. And although I'm not particularly thrilled with the idea of doing this job, the insanity I see in Washington has got to stop.
I can no longer sit back and watch our fundamental rights as human beings be stripped away and replaced by this insanity we call the government. What Congress is doing is bizarre beyond belief. I sit back and watch the news with my mouth open staring in disbelief at what I'm seeing and hearing. And the idea that we are about to have a massive increase in new technology that will be controlled by a government that has lost its mind absolutely scares the hell out of me.
I am not looking forward to winning this election. I feel like the universe is dragging me kicking and screaming into a job I really had no desire to be part of. I don't know why this is happening to me but here I am, stuck with it. I look at my life and say, "Yea right! Even I don't believe this!" I am looking at an incredibly difficult task in a job that doesn't look like it's very much fun. A lot of people think that being a congressman is some kind of a cool job, but I've been around a lot of congressman and it's a lot of work and rather thankless. I'm sure I can probably offend every voter in the 7th district on some issue. It's a lot easier for me to complain about Roy Blunt than for him to complain about me.
On the other hand, I have this overwhelming curiosity about what might happen if someone as different as I am were elected to Congress. I've always believed and have proven several times that a majority is one guy with a big mouth and who doesn't fear anything. There's lots of people in Congress like Roy Blunt, but there's no one like Marc Perkel. Wouldn't you want to see what would happen if we sent a Marc Perkel to Congress? Wouldn't it be hilarious to send them some insanity for a change? It's a scary thought, even for me.
Same vs. Different
The question before the voters is, do you want change or do you want things to stay the same? And if you want to see things change, who's going to give you that change, Marc Perkel or Roy Blunt? This is what this race is all about. Do you want same or do you want different. Roy Blunt is the same. Marc Perkel is different. Make your choice.
For example. I believe that we should focus on what's important. I have this crazy idea that the job of Congress is to pass laws that serve the interests of the people. I believe that Congress should be focusing on real issues like social security, the economy, jobs, the budget, world trade, drugs, teen pregnancy, medicare, veterans benefits, taxes, and crime. Is this what the Republican Congress is doing? No!
For example, Congress was supposed to have passed it's budget for 1999 by April 15th of 1998 to present to the President for his signature or veto. This allows time for a budget battle well in advance of October first when the 1999 fiscal year starts. Did the Congress pass the budget by April 15th? No! In fact the Republicans have already admitted that the 1999 fiscal year is going to start again with no budget even being presented to the President. Why isn't Congress getting it's work done? Because Roy Blunt and the Republican Party believes that the President's sex life is more important than the national budget. President Clinton gets his work done on time. Why can't the Congress get it's work done on time. Isn't that what we're paying these people to do?
I believe that Congress should pass a budget on time. My position is that the afternoon soap operas should be left to the private sector. That's where I stand. If you believe like I do then vote for me. If you think that it is more important for Congress to investigate Clinton's sex life, then vote for Roy Blunt.
If I were a Republican I wouldn't let the Republican leadership rule me if I believed the leadership is in the wrong. My loyalties are to the people and not to the party. If I were Roy I would have told Newt, "We need to work on the 1999 budget. It's our job!" Why not save partisan politics for when the work of the people is done?
This is just one example of where we're different. I'm an in your face and agrue the issues kind of guy. Roy is a go along to get along kind of guy. Roy Blunt is a nice guy, I'm not. There is a saying that you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar. Maybe it's true. But I think there's too much honey going on in Washington and not enough vinegar. If you want honey, vote for Roy. If you want vinegar, vote for me.
http://www.perkel.com/congress - Campaign
http://www.perkel.com/congress/stand.htm - Where I stand on Issues
http://www.perkel.com/pbl - People before Lawyers
http://www.perkel.com - About Me - Index