Lawmakers oftentimes don’t understand the principles of capitalism. Connor Boyack, president of Libertas Institute – a Utah-based organization whose mission is to clear the path of opportunity for each Utahn by removing obstacles that limit freedom – talks about capitalism, protecting free market principles, and fostering an environment in which people can innovate. He explains why lawmakers should be comfortable with innovation and shares the factors that create the desire for regulation in our society. Connor also expounds on the importance of playing defense and offense against the forces that are trying to undermine what we’ve built and protected.
Watch the episode here:
Listen to the podcast here:
Capitalism, Free Markets And Innovation with Connor Boyack
I’m here with Connor Boyack. We are going to get an interesting perspective on the theme that we’ve been discussing all season, which is capitalism. For those of you who are new, Connor is the President of the Libertas Institute, which is a Utah-based organization whose mission is to clear the path of opportunity for each Utahn by removing obstacles that limit freedom. They do a lot of legal research, public advocacy and advertising. They also do lawsuits against government events, publications and more. Connor is also the author of a popular series called The Tuttle Twins Series, which are children’s books that teach the principles of liberty in a variety of different contexts. You had surpassed the half-a-million mark in books?
We’re approaching half-a-million and it’s amazing.
You’re the publisher. You’re the writer. I know you have an illustrator as well.
It’s been a labor of love and it’s awesome.
I hear about it all the time in speaking to people that know you and know those books.There's been some pain, there's been some loss, but no one can argue that we haven't benefited as a society to innovation. Click To Tweet
You sat next to Ron Paul once. That was your in to get them to liven up in the conversation.
This was late at night and we were at dinner. He was pretty tired and he beamed when I talked about you and what you were doing. You struck a chord a number of different ways. You got off a legislative session, which is one of your busiest times in Utah. It’s going to be interesting this interview around capitalism because the perspective that you have creates a unique way to look at some of the principles we’ve been discussing. Number one, you’re in front of lawmakers which oftentimes don’t understand the principles of capitalism and vote to protect people, but at the same time violate individual freedoms. You also write at a children’s level about principles that most adults don’t understand. It’s unique because the way you would speak about it is different than how others speak about it. I want to express my appreciation for what you do. You face lots of adversity standing for principles of freedom. I know it’s not easy sometimes, but you’ve taken a huge responsibility and you’re making a difference.
I think about it this way for your topic, we’ve got capitalism and we can write books about it and we can read books about it. There’s capitalism in theory and there’s capitalism in the trenches. It’s one thing to read Sun Tzu’s The Art of War and be like, “I would totally do that strategy and I would do this.” When you actually get in the war you’re like, “How does this work?” Capitalism is a lot that way at a high level. They are very important principles that I subscribe to. By no means am I saying the theory is bad, it’s spot on. The problem is the real world is messy and you have to interact with people who have political power or economic power and don’t necessarily subscribe to the same principles. How do you do that in a way that preserves capitalism, free markets and liberty and all that stuff? That’s where the rubber meets the road and it’s tough to see how it plays out.
I liked the way you approach things is when certain things inhibit individual rights, that tends to be where you go on the attack, on the offensive.
That’s important because often we’re on the defense. I’m always trying to figure out like, “What are the ways we can strategically pivot?” An example is when Uber and Lyft came to town. People have heard the story play out all over the country. Taxi’s fighting and so forth. We found a single mom who was driving with Lyft in Salt Lake City. She was cited with $6,500 ticket for picking someone up at the airport. It’s insane. You’re going to speed 100 miles an hour over the limit and not get a ticket that much. Here she was doing this consensual whatever thing. She can play defense or Uber and Lyft, on behalf of their clients can play defense and try and fight the ticket, get it stopped. We can use that as leverage to go on the offense and shame the airport, use the court of public opinion and use lawsuits. With us, it’s always, “What are those stories that we can find where the free market is being undermined? Where people are trying to do business and the government is standing in the way. How can we proactively try and fight it?” The benefit with a lot of these cases that we might dig into is there are a lot of sympathies for Uber, Lyft, Airbnb or for food trucks. We did this event called the Rally for Food Truck Freedom. We had about 2,000 people come up in the rain and a dozen food trucks.
The whole thing happening was in our state, food trucks were being heavily regulated. Many were going out of business because here in Utah, we have this valley where all the cities are clustered together and 80% of our state’s population is within that valley. There are all these cities pegged together rather than being separate. The food trucks catering to the market are going everywhere in between. They’ve got lunch here, dinner here and the next day they’ll be in another city. What was happening before is that the government was requiring inspection in every city. Fees in every city governments. You had to do these redundant regulations, inspections and costs.
The costs alone, if you’re selling food, you’re on a razor-thin profit margin. If you have to pay all this money to the government for permission to go operate, it was ridiculous. These guys were going out of business. We do this big food truck event. We had all the media coming. We had all these TV crews come out and these reporters were eating food on cameras and saying how much they love food trucks and leveraging that public opinion to shame these cities. When we went to the legislature to fix the law, there was no question. That law passed super easy because we had got on the offense in a way that built public support and pressure to get the law changed.
Let’s talk about why they wanted to impose those regulations, having to do inspections, get licenses or whatever. What’s the driving force behind that?
It’s fear and laziness. Let me break those down. I’ve answered the question like this a time or two because we deal with this problem all the time. With fear it’s, “We don’t know. Are they going to sell unhealthy food? We’ve got to inspect it. We’ll get it regulated.” That’s the fear-based approach to regulation in the mind of the elected officials and the bureaucrats justify as all these regulatory issues. To some extent, we can agree. We want certification and we want an inspection. Maybe the market can do that rather than the government, but that’s a separate question. On the surface level, we all want healthy food only to be sold. We’re fine there at that superficial level.
Fear is what creates the desire for the regulation, and laziness is the other one. What I mean by that is it’s not within the past few years when food trucks exploded, all these cities said, “We need to regulate these things. We need to make this redundant patchwork.” No, that didn’t happen. This was decades-old laws on the books that weren’t dynamic enough to apply to this new business model. That’s what we see time and again with Tesla trying to do business and Airbnb. You’ve got these regulations and you have inertia in the system that does not respond. It’s not agile enough. You’ve got these new innovative business models that are being crammed down these regulatory frameworks and mazes that were built for a totally different system.It's not the answer across the board, but accountability is essential. Click To Tweet
Laziness plays a big part when we go in and shine a big spotlight at this arcane maze and say, “Why are we making these entrepreneurs go through there?” It’s a bit easier for elected officials to be like, “That looks awful. I wouldn’t want to do that.” There’s a lot of inertia and unless you have people stepping forward and making the case and raising an opportunity to say, “Let’s fix that.” It doesn’t get fixed because these food truck owners didn’t know how to change the law. They didn’t know what to do. When we came on the scene and said, “We’re going to help shine the spotlight,” they were immensely grateful. I eat free at every food truck I go to because I say, “We’re the group that did that.” They’re like, “Let me serve you.” They’re happy. The layperson doesn’t know how to do this stuff, so you get this inertia and silos where this business is regulated this way. This entrepreneur slogs through the system because they don’t know how to change it and very few politicians are enterprising enough to find those problems and then come up with a solution.
What would you say the general consensus is of lawmakers with these issues? It’s interesting you have new businesses, entrepreneurs that are disrupting and finding better ways to do things, which oftentimes may not be perfectly in line with the existing laws. You also have a big business or established businesses that they believe they’re operating in a free market. That’s how they were created, but maybe they haven’t innovated and they’re starting to get disrupted and then use political influence to block certain businesses from competing with them. Where do you see the general consensus of lawmakers when it comes down to those two opposing forces?
This is such a relevant, compelling question because it happens over and over again. We have a problem that is the average lawmaker is ignorant. I don’t mean that in a pejorative way, especially in a citizen legislature that meets part-time. They’ve got jobs. They’ve got families. They’ve got hobbies. Now within a 45-day session, a 60-day session, they’re bombarded with information. You’re talking to elected officials in bullet points. The most effective way to get someone to pay attention, change your mind or go the way you want is a one-pager little summary with bullet points. That’s the level to which the average lawmaker can go on any issue.
Then the problem to your question becomes when they get confused. I’ll give you a very precise example that we’ve dealt with this session. There’s a newer company called Turo. You rent cars. It’s car sharing between you and the person. You want to do Tesla. You want to get a Hummer. You want to get a Lamborghini for a day. People in your area who have that car can share it with you. Who doesn’t like that? The rental car companies have a ton of influence and a ton of money. They hire lobbyists and this happened in Utah. We had a bill that was trying to deregulate and protect the ability of Turo and companies like them to innovate because they’re getting shut down. Like Uber and Lyft where you have Turo drivers being criminally charged and prosecuted for picking people up at the airport.
What happens then is the rental car companies get their lobbyists to go up to the capitol where these superficial, ignorant voters are that can only understand things in bullet points by and large because there’s so much information to absorb about every bill. You get them going to a committee or going to talk to a legislator and say, “We’re the free market approach and all we want is fairness. We want a fair playing field.” They’re not paying all these taxes that we are and they’re not doing all these other things that we are. It’s unfair. That’s persuasive to a lawmaker. I believe in a fair playing field. It’s because the lobbyists for the big companies know well how to spin things in a way that sounds good to an ignorant lawmaker who can’t dedicate a lot of time. When you have the ability to go in there and counter and say, “They’re claiming they want a fair playing field,” what they didn’t tell you are all the cars that they buy for their fleet, they don’t pay sales tax on. They get a sales tax exemption saving a profound amount of money.
We’re totally fine to talk fair playing field if they’re willing to give up that exemption or give it to our group. That’s the problem is there are not a lot of great opportunities for lawmakers to dig in and say, “What do you say to that? Let’s try and get into.” It’s talking points. It’s superficial one-pagers and bullet points. The average lawmaker can’t simply by virtue of how the process works dedicate the amount of time to fully understand the issues. That’s when you get these big companies who are protected by the status quo being able to divert lawmakers into saying, “We want a fair playing field so we’re not going to pass this bill that helps Turo.” Turo and freedom fighters like us on the sidelines are like, “That’s not how it works.” By then the bill’s dead and they have a year head start to keep doing whatever they’re doing.
What ended up happening with Turo, with that bill?
What the bill did that we said by and large is, “If you’re a government and you want to regulate a company like Turo or any other peer-to-peer company, you have to treat them differently than the type of business they’re disrupting.” For example, you have to treat the company Turo differently than you treat Enterprise, Hertz, or rental car companies that own vehicles, own parking lots and buildings because peer-to-peer apps like Turo are a matchmaking service. It matched you with the model X guy. That’s all they are. They don’t have inventory. The same thing, Airbnb is not a hotel. Uber’s not a taxi service. We have this model framework saying, “Treat them differently. We’re not telling you how.” What we’re saying is you can’t go to Turo or whatever new peer-to-peer app comes online and say, “You have to abide by these old regulations.” We’re trying to say in law, create a separate path because they’re different. Everyone freaks out, loses their mind, they narrowed the bill, amended it down to nothing and then it ended up not passing. In a free market, a pro-business state no less.
As societies, as the world continues to innovate, Turo is like you rent your car out to somebody else. It’s not this revolutionary life-changing idea. When those are presented, how have you been able to think through that as far as how you would approach some life-changing treatment? I know stem cells and that type of therapy is getting big, but yet it freaks a lot of people out. It could be revolutionary for health purposes. How do you reconcile your ability to have conversations with legislators who can’t necessarily understand the principles of a simple service like Turo?
It’s tough and to the latter point you bring out with stem cells, I’ve got a friend who’s flying down to Mexico because that’s where you’ve got to go to get this innovative therapy. We have a choice in America as a once in theory or to some larger degree free market capitalist society that embraced innovation that has veered far more towards socialist, redistribution and pro-regulation. We have to make a decision. There’s a fantastic book called Permissionless Innovation. This is by Adam Thierer at the Mercatus Institute. It’s all about documenting how our society has been improved, especially through internet technologies where you had a bit of this Wild Wild West. The lack of regulation stimulated this innovation where people could experiment, fail and succeed that have benefited all our lives collectively.
There’s been some pain. There’s been some loss. No one can argue that we haven’t benefited as a society by the profound innovation that’s been able to happen. His argument is that rather than a presumption of regulation, which is what our society has adopted collectively speaking, we should have a presumption of innovation. We should have permissionless innovation where you don’t as an entrepreneur have first to go and fill out form 1093X and then you have to go over here and get a permission slip. Dot your I’s and cross your T’s. Just go innovate. As long as you’re not hurting anyone and everything’s fine, you pass some simple little check and then go innovate.The market and the government are very joined at the hip. Click To Tweet
The problem to your question is lawmakers need to become comfortable with that. What we’re trying to figure out in our state, but then more broadly the message to this is how do you get lawmakers to embrace permissionless innovation? How do you get them to abandon the two issues, fear and laziness? How do you get them to care? How do you get them to have faith rather than fear? I think part of that is storytelling by say, “Show me that phone in your pocket.” That’s a result of permissionless innovation.
Imagine if the government had said that before coming up with a new cell phone, you must do all these things. Would Apple have done that? Would their competitors have done that? Would that have sparked all the race of innovation that has accelerated new technologies and new things that we take for granted? Using stories and examples to get lawmakers comfortable with a presumption of innovation is where we need to get to. We’re internal with our organization trying to figure out how do you give them that comfort so when enterprise, when the hotels or when the protectionist incumbents come to them and say, “We need protection. We need regulation,” you can have a lawmaker say, “No, I support capitalism. I support free markets. I understand you may not like it, but we’re going to go this path instead.”
When I look at where we’re at as a society, especially with the fiscal situation we’re in as a country, as well as how our monetary system operates. The issues with government, mostly federal government deficits and how much debt is on the books. The debt they’re in with other countries as well as us, the Federal Reserve. You also look at the unfunded obligations, Social Security and Medicare. There are a lot of issues out there. I look at the future and without innovation, if things slowly sputtered along, there are going to be a lot of heartaches. Technology is where innovation occurrence because the idea of technology is to be more efficient.
In a free market, if you don’t have a technology that makes a person’s life better or reduces the amount of time or reduces the amount of money, it’s going to fail quickly. When you start to stifle innovation, that’s when the future is going to get rocky. I never heard of that book before, but it makes sense because if you’re having a hard time with Turo, what about a life-changing medical procedure? What about the medical marijuana that you’ve been dealing with? It’s one of those things where life is happening quickly, and if the government starts to put their foot on the brakes, it can be bad for everyone.
One of the challenges is that because economics and politics are inherently intertwined, you got all these regulations and laws that are encumbering the market. We’ve never had a truly free market. We can talk about wanting one and how they’re great, but we’ve always had this regulated market and politicians respond to pressure. Whether that’s angry mob pressure or people demanding things and saying, “We want this,” and looking at the polls. Part of our challenge, to be frank, is a lot of people are a climatized to the status quo. It’s hard to quantify. The unfunded liabilities and the college debt bubble, all these things are on the horizon. The numbers are so big we can’t even comprehend them anymore. The layperson, there’s no demand for change. Consequently, there’s no pressure being applied to lawmakers. If anything, it’s the opposite. I don’t want to think about that. I don’t want to touch it. I want my easy credit. I want the ability to get a loan to finance my house, put the burden on someone else, and that’s where the demand is.
You have that perverse incentive for lawmakers to ease the burden on the people who are directly in their ear and the people who can’t advocate and the rising generation who would keep kicking the can down to. That’s part of the problem is when we had the food truck owners rallied together, when we had the Uber and Lyft drivers rallied together, we can go work together to create the right pressure to get things changed. Create a freer market to get these bad regulations out the way. When it comes to the big financial problems you’ve listed, where’s the mob? Where’re the pitchforks? Where’s the pressure? If anything, there’s almost the opposite incentive and that’s to our collected detriment because it’s creating a big problem.
I was in Italy and we were in a city where there were this massive protest and kids apparently left school and they were protesting global warming. In Italy, I don’t know if you know much about what’s going on there, they’re horribly in debt and they’re in a recession. A lot of it has to do with their government and the lack of accountability that’s existed there, but yet they’re protesting global warming. That’s something I think you’re right. Worldwide, we’ve been polarized with status quo and how things should be and it’s been exploited.
Part of it is the bread and circuses mentality of Rome. There are political bread and circuses. Global warming is itself a bit of political bread. It’s the hip thing to be excited about and it’s what everyone wants to chatter about. Why don’t they funnel that same political energy to go tackle the real problems that are actually threatening people? It’s almost a convenient distraction for politicians to look cool and say, “I care about saving the world.” Save your country. Save your budget. It’s like the Jordan Peterson, “Clean your bedroom first and then go worry about other stuff.”
Accountability is a huge piece of capitalism and it also seems it’s a huge piece based on your success. With capitalism, the accountability is if you produce a bad product, people are not going to buy it. Therefore, you have the incentive to produce something of value. When it comes to lawmakers, what you’ve done is you’ve created a similar environment so that they operate in a different environment of accountability. Talk about what you’ve done with creating lawmaker index.
In our state, other groups do this too, but we’ve created it to the point where it’s effective. The very night that the legislative session ends, we already have done and finalized our index scoring of how they did. There’s immediacy. We’re not waiting a few weeks when everyone’s back in their lives. We get it out quickly. Ranking all the best and the worst votes and the benefit in doing this is we’re first to market. Everyone’s looking at our index. It’s the thing coming out the gate to see how everyone did. We get a lot of attention and because we get a lot of attention on the index, that creates an incentive for lawmakers to want to do well so that they perform good.We can't all do the same thing, but we can support one another on our different paths. Click To Tweet
All throughout the session, we’ll have different lawmakers coming up to us and say, “How am I doing?” We get little bonus points when they sponsor our bills because they’re good free-market bills. We say, “If you run one of these bills, you’ll get some extra points. If you run a bad bill, you’ll get negative points.” We’ll get lawmakers like, “I only did one bill of yours. Do you have a couple more that we could do?” I have a puppy and I can use the treat to do good behavior. You don’t want them to pee on the couch. We have all these politicians doing bad things, you’ve got to wave the little incentive in front of them. By no means is it like the answer. A lot of them don’t care. Some of them live in districts where they’re liberal or progressive and they’re not all fans of the free market. They want these big socialist policies.
Those politicians in true representative form don’t care about our index because they feel they’re representing their constituency well. It’s not the answer across the board, but accountability is essential. When you go on Amazon to buy this laptop, you’re going to see the ratings. You see what everyone thinks about it, what experience they’ve had with it. You can have confidence in your decision to acquire that commodity. Why shouldn’t the same thing happen with elected officials? Why can’t we see their voting record conveniently? How they’ve done on the best and worst? How many times did they raise taxes? How many bills have they sponsored that protect the free market? That type of information leads to an informed consumer, in the case of a commodity or an informed voter. I’m sure you get this too.
You get to Election Day. I get all these texts coming in from people saying, “I haven’t looked at anything. Who should I vote for? I didn’t have time to study, tell me what to vote for. I think like you.” I’m like, “Don’t vote.” The concern is we need to have informed voting, informed consumers in the same way. I took an Uber drive and you can see the star rating from all the other drivers, and I have one too. It’s a self-policing system, a great example where the market is taken care of itself to weed out any bad actors. Why can’t we have that in politics? We need more of it.
Fundamentally, isn’t government about protecting free market principles and protecting individual rights. They’re not there to solve problems. If you look at the innovation that I think is the key to the future, inhibiting that is going to be catastrophic. I also look at it essentially technology replacing the government in a sense. We have the tools of accountability that government creates in the first place, whether it’s permits for restaurants or even drivers’ licenses. There are a number of different things that are governed to protect people, but at the same time, there are a lot of free-market tools that would most likely do a better job.
The issue is there’s always going to be those forces trying to dissuade the adoption of new technologies that are going to disrupt. I’ll give you an example. I was in the House of Representatives this session and I leaned over to my policy director. I made a comment to the effect that there’s this woman, a clerk whose job it is to read the name of every bill when it’s time to vote. That’s her job. You can automate that. Everything’s digital and yet this woman is still required to read. Run that through a Google voice transcription thing. It’s super easy, super effective and it saves $60,000 or whatever it costs to pay her. Yet everyone in charge of the budget and on the staff loves that woman of, “Why would we want to let her go? She’s great.” You have those perverse incentives always trying to inhibit the ability to progress.
That’s the nature of governments, the Ronald Reagan, the closest thing to eternity is a government program or a government job. This has been great. I didn’t have all the time in the world, but we appreciate it because hearing from you is a different perspective on reality. I look at it completely different. I don’t see things as you see them because of your experience, especially with lawmaking in general in that process, but also understanding free market principles at the level that you do. Capitalism is interesting because we’ve never had pure free market capitalism in anything.
There’s always been in our modern society some element of government and policing to an extent and not protecting human rights. At the same time, you look at the capitalism principles, creating an environment in which people can innovate and not have this oversight or scrutiny and what they’re trying to do. It’s beautiful to see all the things that have happened in our lives, whether it’s the technology in our cars, our phones or in our computers. The more freedom we advocate, the better the innovation is going to be and the better our lives are going to be. To end with this, talk about what you see is the future of just lawmaking, markets, and society. How do you feel things are going in general?
Anyone who cares about capitalism has to care about politics. You have to care about human psychology. They’re inherently connected. You can’t succeed in life financially if you don’t understand how the system works. It’s like getting out the chessboard and all the pieces are laid out and you think it’s a checkers game. You have to understand the rules of the game. As sad as it is, politics inherently as connected to the system of capitalism that we have or the partial capitalism or whatever you want to call it. That’s the downside and the opportunity I see that a lot of people disconnect the two. They don’t realize if we’re going to be successful and have a true market economy or whatever degree that we can, we have to get involved politically.
At a minimum, we have to be aware politically to know where the currents are going and what to do. Either get involved, support someone else who is effective in your state or the national level. As great as it is to go try and make money and grow our businesses and that’s all important, we also have to be playing defense and offense against the forces that are trying to undermine what we’ve protected and what we’ve built. You look at the rise of AOC and it’s still burning to these days. The popularity of the rise of democratic socialism from people who don’t even understand the implications of what that term even means.
There’s a good reason to be a little fearful of the future from a capitalist perspective and what that means. We can’t care, ignore it and think it will go away. We have to confront the fact that the market and the government are joined at the hip. We need to know what to do about it. That’s the pitch I would make to your audience is to figure out in their path of life what their unique skill sets and interests, how to get involved and how to make a difference because we need all the manpower we can get. Whatever state your dear audience is in, I would invite you to go to SPN.org. That stands for the State Policy Network, and it’s like an umbrella association for all the different free-market think tanks across the country. Every state has at least one, some have more than one. Whatever state you’re in, if you want to see who’s in your back yard working in the trenches, and I promise you they’re having more success than any of the national groups that are doing. It’s hard to get national reform, but there’s so much opportunity at a local level where the rubber meets the road and these are the guys in the trenches working on free-market stuff in your community. SPN.org is where you can find them.
That’s the thing even doing interviews like this. You have been influential outside of Utah, The Tuttle Twins, but I know you’ve written a bunch of op-eds for nationwide newspapers. Plus, you’ve gotten a lot of press with some of the things in Utah. The digital privacy is one I remember where Utah was one of the first states to pass them. It’s one of those things where with Connor, whether it’s me following them on social media or it’s sharing some of his thoughts because I oftentimes talk with people and mentioned The Tuttle Twins books and give them away. You can have a similar impact, whether it’s through following these organizations, supporting them financially, but also sharing thoughts and sharing ideas. I’d also say Tuttle Twins is an incredible way to learn about free market principles from a number of different angles because teaching your children about it through those children’s books is incredible.
Breaking it down to that fundamental level solidifies that theory and that principle in your mind. I know that you’re making a huge difference here, but as our society continues to progress or grow at a quick rate. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, you have some radical ideas that are manifesting and because of good marketing, because of good influential tactics are gaining steam. Understanding what those things mean as it relates to our future is important. I understand that I don’t have time during the day to write the way you do or to do videos or to lobby legislative sessions, but there are organizations out there that are passionate.
It’s a division of labor. We can’t all do the same thing so we can support one another on our different paths.
What are the best ways to follow your organizations?
Our website is LibertasUtah.org. The Tuttle Twins books are a combo deal with all the discounts and workbooks we throw in is at TuttleTwins.com. If any of your audience wants to follow me or find out about me, google Connor Boyack and I’m easily discoverable.
Connor, thanks. I appreciate it.
Thanks for having me.
Thanks, everyone for reading. We’ll see you next time.
- Libertas Institute
- The Tuttle Twins
- Ron Paul
- The Art of War
- Permissionless Innovation
About Connor Boyack
Connor Boyack is president of Libertas Institute, a public policy think tank in Utah. He is also president of The Association for Teaching Kids Economics, a national organization helping teachers educate their students about the free market.
Connor is the author of several books on politics and religion, along with hundreds of columns and articles championing individual liberty. His work has been featured on international, national, and local TV, radio, and other forms of media. A California native, Connor currently resides in Utah with his wife and two children.