Liberty island is the brain child of David Bernstein and Adam Bellow, with the help of Jamie Wilson, Abbey Clarke and a team of creators who range from atheist to pagan to Catholic, Libertarian to Tea-Party Conservative. Perhaps the one, sure thing we all have in common is devotion to the ideals of individual initiative, free enterprise and the profit motive, i.e., getting to keep the fruits of our labor and sharing at our own discretion, rather than that of big government.

Adam Bellow, son of *the* Pulitzer winning author Saul Bellow, has been a nonfiction editor for 25 years and vice president/executive editor for Doubleday and HarperCollins. "I noticed that a lot of conservatives–alienated and excluded from mainstream popular culture–were starting to write and publish their own fiction. Not only that, the same thing was happening in popular music and video. Together with a small group of friends we hatched the idea for Liberty Island as a home for the new counterculture. It’s Andrew Breitbart’s revolution!" To learn "How a pedigreed upper west side liberal came out as a conservative warrior," see

David S. Bernsteintransitioned from an early career in politics to become an entrepreneur and publishing professional. In the 1990s, he founded acclaimed conservative political journal Diversity & Division, which was the first original political voice for Gen-X conservatives. David grew up in Reading, PA and Washington DC before moving to New York City in 1993. David is a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park, and holds an MBA from New York University.

Abbey Clarke is Liberty Island’s Editorial Assistant.

Liberty Island is an online-only magazine(aka "ezine" for people like my sister Lori). The price of subscribing? A voluntary donation to a tip-jar. See a story you like? Leave a tip via PayPal for the author. Interesting marketing concept. I’m curious to see how it will work.

I don’t have a tip jar (my inner German just won’t go there), but I do post book reviews and contest entries. The contest germinated when Maureen Dowd wrote a politically motivated short story that has Tea Party members turning into zombies and destroying the Capitol, and a father sadly telling his son how Conservatives brought down America. "Can you write a better short story than Maureen Dowd?" inspired a wide variety of submissions. Marina Fontaine is turning hers into a novel. I’ve read and loved 15 chapters so far. I think she should employ Sarah Hoyt’s brilliant son to help her turn it into a graphic novel–you never know what could spring from Liberty Island.

My own story involves a mad German scientist with a time machine, but he isn’t entirely sure how it works (yes, think "Wizard of Oz"), and he’s frustrated by its limitations. Like Oskar Schindler, he can only save so many people. He has to know the person died in real time before he dares to travel back in time to save a Jewish child from being gassed in a Concentration Camp or a German child from dying in a bombed building. The German’s other mission is to recruit entrepreneurs (yes, think John Galt). My favorites (Ayn Rand overlooked them!) are the Native American CEOs. I can’t resist sharing some of the photos that inspired the story.

Break my heart: before and after image of a Navajo boy taken by the Carlisle School (boarding schools set up to "tame" Native American children into being "Good" citizens):

Red Shirt (below), an Oglala Sioux (source: wikipedia).

Native American CEOs? Yes:

Stephen Mills, CEO and President of AQIWO, never forgets his American Indian heritage–not even when naming his company, AQIWO, which is not an acronym as one might suspect, but rather the Chumash word for "shooting star" or "light." The Arlington, Virginia, based information securities company pulled in revenues of $2.6 million in 2009. Mills gives back to his community as well, spending time mentoring American Indian youths and business owners who are interested in learning about government contracting. "I am very proud of my heritage and give back in the way of mentoring other Native American entrepreneurs,’ he says. "I serve as an example and am always happy to speak with those interested in doing it themselves."(Source:

Louie Wise, III, President, Climate Control Mechanical Services, Ocala, Fla. 2010 Revenue: $6.3 million

Despite his minority status–and also having a hearing disability–Louie Wise, III, refuses to make excuses. "Those things are part of who I am but they have never been used to gain access, apply for any personal benefits or limited me," he says. A descendant of the Creek Indian tribe, Wise achieved his position at Climate Control Mechanical Services by taking full responsibility of his actions, a virtue he tries to imbue in his employees. "Planning, processes, and performance enable someone to be successful. Heritage is something that should be understood, respected, and conveyed to your children, but never exploited."

Arrow Strategies CEO Jeff Styers, 50 percent Mohawk and Onondaga Clear Sky Indian, started boxing at 13 years old after being inspired by the movie Rocky. "I loved the mano a mano aspect of it, that you can draw and control your own destiny," he says. Styers became a celebrated amateur boxer in his hometown of Wayne, Michigan, right outside of Detroit; he later joined the Marines Corp and made the All-Marine boxing team. He was honorably discharged in 1986 and went pro two years later, finishing his boxing career in 1994 with a perfect record of 11-0. With 113 career fights under his belt, Styers is one company executive you definitely want in your corner. –Dave Smith Source: Top 10 American Indian Entrepreneurs – Feature

My second contest entry, "Comrade Cruises," brings The German back for more time-traveling and child-rescuing. (Yes, I channeled Lenore Skenazy, who wrote the book "World’s Worst Mom" after being publicly condemned for trusting her child to be self-reliant). I also pillaged quotes from Nanny-Government Food bloggers and from official reports about a sunken cruise liner. You can sneak-preview a primitive version of this 3000-word behemoth (yes, I’ll be trimming, editing and polishing for years to come) at my blog:

While you’re there, don’t miss out on more Native photos–

Okay, I showed you my blog. Now you show me yours.

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