"Should citizens be forced to have health insurance? Or should that be an individual decision?" Moran asked. "That is one small example of the sorts of things government has evolved into over the past century."
Moran believes West Virginia should create "its own brand of health-care programs centered around community health clinics that are already concerned about their patients' nutrition, exercise and medications."
Moran also said he has strong views on energy extraction.
"We are being treated like a Third World country here, like a colony. Companies extract energy resources from West Virginia, then go away and leave us in tatters.
"I know what it means to be a capitalist and make decisions about profits and losses. Nothing happens here [with energy companies] that is of benefit to us."
He said future state tax breaks for companies should focus on investors who are willing to build long-term manufacturing and industrial facilities in the state.
He vigorously criticizes the federal "Real ID" program. "This creates problems for people when they try to get their driver's licenses renewed. The governor should have refused to accept that federal program at the state line."
The program was created by the federal government in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, after several of the terrorists used fake driver's licenses to board airplanes. West Virginia is one of a handful of states to be in compliance with the federal program.
Moran said West Virginia's "leadership has been long shared, back and forth, between Democrats and Republicans. They are identical.
"The two parties are so similar it wouldn't make any difference which one you elect," he said. "I am offering an alternative based on specific programs, not just on mottos.
"People are looking for a courageous governor, not a rubber-stamp governor," Moran said.
Moran, who holds a Ph.D. in hydrodynamics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was a professor at the U.S. Naval Academy. He has also taught at the University of Iowa, George Washington University and Wheeling Jesuit University.
Moran and his wife, Lori Wall, have a son serving as a U.S. Navy pilot and a daughter who is an author and a former Central Intelligence Agency agent, he said.
Educated as an engineer, Moran spent his earlier career in the U.S. Navy as an engineer focused on oceanography and designing ships for special operations.
Today, Moran and his wife care for 100 alpacas and 40 sheep on their 120-acre Crimson Shamrock Farm on a mountaintop in the town of Eglon. He said he and his wife raise the animals for their fur, which they use in the international fiber market.
"It makes for an exciting life," Moran said. "I still do some teaching at West Virginia University in the Animal Sciences Department. It is not my original discipline, but I have spent a good bit of time studying animal science."
Moran faces incumbent Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, a Democrat; Republican Bill Maloney and Mountain Party candidate Jesse Johnson in the governor's race. Election Day is Nov. 6; early voting begins Oct. 24.
Reach Paul J. Nyden at pjny...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5164.