Hans Tinsley was born in California on Merced Air Force Base and shortly afterwards moved with his parents to Cottage Grove, Minnesota. He spent the majority of his elementary years in Minnesota where his father worked as an aircraft mechanic for Northwest Airlines. Late in elementary school Hans moved to Sacramento, California with his mother and sister. Hans Frequently traveled to see his father, first in Minnesota and later in Georgia, during summers and holidays from school for the next four years. Later at the age of twelve, he decided to live with his father in Sharpsburg, Georgia just south of Atlanta where his father continued to work at a maintenance hanger for Northwest Airlines.
Hans Tinsley spent his last years in middle school and freshman year of high school in Georgia before Northwest Airlines shutdown its maintenance hanger in Atlanta. During this time, From there he moved to Woodbury, Minnesota to finish High School while his father would return to Northwest Airlines at MSP and later Duluth. Hans was able to frequently travel for those ten years with his family to the United Kingdom to visit his grandparents and afforded the opportunity to see France as well several times.
In his senior year of High School, the mechanics of Northwest Airlines went on a 15 month strike. This was Hans' first experience with the critical roll of unions for the average worker in America and observing union busting. After graduating from Woodbury High School in 2006, Hans Tinsley did a semester at Inver Grove Community College before joining the United States Navy.
Hans spent two years in the arduous Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program in Charleston, South Carolina for Naval Nuclear Power School and Ballston Spa, New York for Naval Nuclear Power Training Unit (Prototype). Upon graduation from prototype he spent four years aboard the fast attack submarine USS Cheyenne (SSN 773) stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii as a Nuclear Machinist Mate. While aboard during his time, Hans was deployed twice to the Western Pacific to provide support for Freedom of the Seas and a deterrent to those who would violate international laws and boundaries. During these deployments, Hans experienced several different cultures and perspectives including South Korea, Japan, Singapore, and the Philippines and these experiences had a lasting effect of how important our allies overseas are to US interests and different societies have much to offer and teach us. Hans Tinsley was honorably discharged from the United States Navy in 2013 as a Petty Officer First Class (E-6) with a Navy Achievement Medal and two Meritorious Unit Commendations during his service.
Once discharged from the Navy, Hans Tinsley returned to Saint Paul, Minnesota where he spent one year studying at the the University of Minnesota (Twin Cities). Hans Tinsley left the University after the realization that traditional higher education was not the path for him. Hans moved to Mankato, Minnesota and to apply the skills and knowledge he learned in the Navy to obtain both his Boiler License from the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry and Water License from the Minnesota Department of Health in 2015. He applied his former license to acting as a relief boiler operator throughout the state of Minnesota under the employment of Sprung Services, ranging from East Grand Forks in the Northwest to Winona in the Southeast.
In 2017, Hans was afforded the opportunity to use his Water License with employment by Pacific Architects and Engineers under contract by the National Science Foundation in the United States Antarctic Program. He spent a year at McMurdo Station, Antarctica providing continuing support for the US science mission on the world's coldest continent. The experience taught many valuable lessons of US involvement in many different fields of science and US support of international partners on in a distant unforgiving environment.
Upon returning to Mankato, Minnesota in late 2018, Hans returned to work for Sprung Services while pursuing the potential to become a Foreign Service Officer for the US Department of State. In early 2019, after much discussion with several friends and coworkers, he decided to run for the Minnesota 1st Congressional District of the US House of Representatives. The decision was not made lightly as the he had considered running in the 2018 election year as well, but chose to pursue a different path at that time. Hans had always stated his priorities were to stem the corruption and cronyism is Washington DC and represent the average Minnesotan over the powerful lobbies and interests. Choosing to run as an Independent and take no large donations, accept any endorsements, nor participate in any corporate or party funded PACs, Hans wants to return the voice back to people instead of money.
THE ISSUES AT HAND
'Those who would destroy or further limit the rights of organized labor--those who would cripple collective bargaining or prevent organization of the unorganized--do a disservice to the cause of democracy.'
-John F. Kenndy 1960
The withering attacks on Unions by corporate and wealthy interests has taken its long toll in the last 40 years, falling from a membership of 30% of all wage and salary workers to just 10% today. This has taken its toll on on the earning power of the average American citizen and divergence in in the distribution of revenues and profits from improving the worker to server the shareholders.
We must introduce new laws to strengthen the NLRA and NLRB to enforce worker protections, the ability to unionize, and excercise their right to collective bargaining. There must also be new provisions to allow for flexibility within Unions to ensure that all workers, from blue collar to white collar, who wish to enter into organization with one another are able.
A LIVING WAGE
'No business which depends for existence on paying less than living wages to its workers has any right to continue in this country.'
-Franklin D. Roosevelt 1933
The continued use of poverty wages and hours by major corporations must be stopped. Not only is it a drain on Federal social programs to supplement the lack of wages and benefits these companies refuse to provide to their workforce, but also an indirect subsidy to major corporations that employ workers who use their Federal assistance at their place of work. Any company that cannot afford to pay a decent wage should receive no Federal funds to subsidize poor business practices.
An increase to the wage floor is necessary as inflation has undercut the real wages and purchasing power of all workers and those at the bottom are among the hardest hit. This must be done with careful foresight to the economic implications of such a raise of the wage floor, with new rules placed for better regional and metro tailoring of minimum requirement in their respective areas. Local cost of living in Minnesota is much higher than in Alabama as Los Angeles is more expensive than Minneapolis and our wage laws must reflect this fact.
'We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.'
-Franklin D. Roosevelt 1936
Congress typically spends more time fundraising for campaigns then it does legislating. This includes time spent crafting legislation, to time in committees and on the floor itself. It has been shown in the last 40 years the more fundraising done, the higher likelihood of winning an election. 15% of total campaign financing was from small donors (<$200), while over 50% was from large donors. This means that the congressman is spending more time courting the wealthy and elite for more campaign money while the majority of Americans are paid lip service or outright ignored.
The deluge of money from wealthy individuals and powerful business interests in political races has corrupted our democracy into, at best inaction and the worst being cronyism. This has been studied and shown to have a relatively large effect in recent years with the likelihood of legislative action passing increasing as more powerful interests support it, regardless of its effect on the average citizen.
Campaign finance is not the only issue in Washington either, large lobby groups wield increasingly potent power on what legislation Congress passes. Not only do large lobby groups spend millions trying to woo our legislators, they write the majority of legislation that crosses the Congressional floors. These legislative items are not written with concern for the citizen in mind, but extracting maximum return from any and all laws that are passed.
The average citizen does not have their own personal lobbyist in Washington and does not hold the same influence for Congress to acknowledge or enact legislation on their part. The only lobby we have as citizens are our elected Representatives who are becoming heavily influenced by outside factors.
'Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health is the most shocking and the most inhuman because it often results in physical death.'
-Martin Luther King 1966
This Nation was founded on the rights of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. Over 45000 deaths and 500000 bankruptcies occur annually due to lack of access to affordable healthcare. This contradicts 2 of the 3 unalienable rights we as citizens hold to be most dear. Deaths that could have been prevented today is directly opposed to the the right of Life and financial distress caused by greed impedes our right to the Pursuit of Happiness.
The current for profit industry has shown time and again in recent years how little it cares about the average citizen over how much money it can make. From rising insurance, hospital, and drug costs to the rise of unneeded or unwanted procedures and worse outcomes that lead to more hospitalizations and financial strain. The continued usurpation of the basic rights to life and happiness for the benefit of corporate boards and shareholders cannot continue unchallenged.
We must begin to move towards universal coverage and access that everyone can afford. The ACA was an important step in this respect, but has led to the subsidization of for profit companies to help our worst off. It also allowed insurance companies to capitalize on new revenue from previously uninsured and unchecked power to raise prices emboldened by the Federal penalty of not having insurance.
In the years since the passing of the ACA, choices in insurance companies have begun dwindle as companies divest from lower profit regions to maintain their stranglehold in others. This eventually leads to oligopoly of markets as the companies do not enter competitor markets by tacit collusion. An illegal tactic under the Sherman Act (1890), but rarely enforced as evidenced by such examples as the rise of telecommunications oligopolies across the US.
The first steps to gaining fair and equatable healthcare for all citizens is a ban of for profit insurance, a cap on the profit margin of life saving drugs, and treatments. These are not the final steps, but the start towards the true meaning of the right to Life and Happiness for every citizen today.
'That every man may receive at least, a moderate education appears to be an object of vital importance.'
-Abraham Lincoln 1832
A free and prosperous society starts by ensuring all citizens are educated to the fullest extent of their ability. Throughout our history, access to education and its benefits has been a key driver of our success. Today we stand at a crossroad of more education being necessary, but limiting the availability and later success of those to attain that education.
Many employers today require post secondary degrees for even the most basic of positions that in the past required no more then a high school education. Not only does this limit the opportunities for those who do not possess the means to obtain such credentials, but has diluted the credentials themselves. This has led to a massive influx of people attending colleges that has continued to drive costs for post secondary education to unaffordable levels leading to massive student debt that continues to burden many for decades after graduation.
We must continue to strive to educate our entire population to prepare them for the future as well as creating a more knowledgeable and informed society. This includes investing in the students themselves with larger grants to public institutions to allow people from all walks of life to attend without fear of financial burden. The view that education is an investment is largely seen by all that pays great dividends to the society that fosters it and it is time that we accepted that responsibility for college students as well.
We should also recognize that college education is not the only path to an informed and productive citizenry. No one person is the same and no one education institution suits all. Proper investment in community and technical colleges is a route to be pursued as well. As the world continues to evolve and technology continues to advance and spread through every facet of our lives, those who have trade, vocational, and technical aptitude will become more sought after. The person who works with their hands after attending trade school is as much an asset as the scientist who attended a university.
The future success of our society depends entirely on the success of our education system. From the highly technical to the highly educated, we must provide the tools of success to all.
OPEN INTERNET ACCESS
The internet has become the preeminent consumption, distribution, and communication platform today. This has created a wealth of opportunities and has proven to be an equalizer across all demographics given proper access.
Today, broken promises and oligopoly plague the once great promise of the internet. Regional monopolies, stunted infrastructure, and deregulation have made an turned a tool for a fair and open society into one of exclusion.
The internet has become important for many reasons that range from securing employment to personal growth. Without fair and balanced access to this tool, the disparity between those with and without that access will grow exponentially and there will be no repairing the damage the worst affected.
We must support net neutrality and prevent sectionalism of the internet for profit, based on false claims pushed by those that would hold it hostage. We must declare the internet and broadband as a public utility to protect the public interests in the most important tool of the modern era.
'No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.'
-James Madison 1795
The US is waging 8 different wars across Africa and the Middle East, it is also involved in dozens of smaller conflicts across the globe. These conflicts across a score of countries have little to no Congressional oversight and, with the exception of Iraq and Afghanistan, no Congressional approval.
The post 9/11 2001 AUMF has no sunset clause and has been used by the executive branch as carte blanche to intervene in International conflicts regardless of International Law, Congressional authority, or Domestic opinion. This power was never intended to involve the US in perpetual war across the world, nor was it intended for intervention or initiation of conflicts at will. The AUMF has continued to be misinterpreted by three separate Presidents and the DoD beyond its scope of defense against Al-Qaeda and its co-belligerents such as the Taliban for the 9/11 attacks.
The repeal of the 2001 AUMF and replacement with individual targeted AUMFs by Congress is necessary to check the abuses of the Executive branch and restore the constitutional authority of war to Congress. This will not weaken the Executive authority to respond to imminent threats to US security and defense as the 1973 War Powers Resolution grants limited authority to the President to deploy and combat those threats for 60 days while allowing Congress to deliberate US involvement.
'I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.'
-James Madison 1788
The Constitution was written as a living document, with the President, Congress, and Judiciary bound by its laws. The Bill of Rights was established to place certain rights beyond politics, beyond the majorities of congress, would be subject to no votes, and outcome depend on no elections.
This has been completely disregarded in the post 9/11 era with the Patriot and Freedom Acts. The bills that continue to nullify the 1st, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th amendments, and constitutional Habeas Corpus. The Federal Judiciary has neither the will nor courage to strike these unconstitutional laws down. Congress must take a stand and repeal or allow these laws to expire before they are entrenched and used as justification for further erosion of our constitutional rights and liberties.
'Here in the United States we turn our rivers and streams into sewers and dumping-grounds, we pollute the air, we destroy forests and exterminate fishes, birds, and mammals, but at last it looks as if our people were awakening.'
-Theodore Roosevelt 1913
From anthropogenic climate change to access to clean water. There are many environmental issues, large and small, that increasingly require comprehensive action by Congress. They have shown indecisiveness and inaction for too long on the stewardship our natural resources and protecting access for all to those resources for necessity and recreation.
This is not just in the city of Flint, the coal towns of Appalachia, or the states affected by fracking, but here in Minnesota as well. Almost half of Minnesota lakes, rivers, and streams have been deemed hazardous to personal health due to pollution. Renewing our commitment to good stewardship and access to clean water and air for all by comprehensive legislation against major industrial and agricultural sources is imperative.
We must also continue to invest in alternative energy sources to reduce the overall impact on the climate by humans. This includes raising and maintaining investment in, but not limited to, renewable energy in solar, wind, and geothermal capacity. We must also look to other means and technologies as energy consumption continues to exponentially rise. From biofuel efficiency to expanding nuclear power capacity, all avenues of obtaining greenhouse neutral energy production must be pursued.