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Independence Day Redux

Tomorrow is America’s July 4th Independence Day, the day Americans celebrate our Declaration of Independence from the tyrannical Great Britain in 1776.

In modern days we tend to take this holiday, and all it stands for, for granted. We enjoy fireworks displays, we grill out with family and friends, we travel and vacation, communities gather together to celebrate. After dark, red flares are lit around the entire circumference of Chautauqua Lake, which is pretty neat to see. All those disparate communities and property owners unified for that one moment. America’s greatest moment, our crowning achievement – God-given Liberty for all people.

What we do not celebrate or take note of today is what ensued after the Declaration of Independence. The long, bloody, wearying, expensive war with Britain and her mercenaries; the lost communities that were divided along loyalty lines, and which self-destructed in mass hangings and reprisals; the lost fathers and sons killed in combat; the bloody raids from Canada deep into Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, that lasted until after the War of 1812 had concluded.

The American War for Independence was, in fact, a civil war, our first civil war. On one side were advocates for political, social, and commercial stability, harmonious continuity, and loyalty to our British benefactors and feudal overlords. On the other hand were a handful of people who believed in something radical, something new, something previously unseen in human experience: Liberty for all, freedom of choice and of association, government devoted to representing the interests of The People, and not just the monarch or his chosen few.

Winning American freedom was very hard, and it cost a lot of lives lost and money spent. The destruction of towns north and south is still legendary. Boston, New York, and even Philadelphia were severely damaged, and with that went economic damage and deprivation that reached everyone.

Yet it was all of this deprivation and tenacious warfare and willing sacrifice that cemented the American spirit of self reliance, true grit, and patriotism for the most unique, freest, best nation on Earth. And yet, as success bred success and material success bred complacency and satiety, Americans began to lose that original spirit. Our material wealth has spoiled us and put many of us to sleep, to the point where we actually have a major political party advocating for the gifting of “free” healthcare to anyone who illegally walks into our country. And none of the current taxpaying citizens here qualify for that same free healthcare!

I do not think it is alarmist to say that America is now in another civil war. The evidence is all around us. Oh, we are not yet fully lined up and shooting at each other. But we are becoming fully lined up along ideological differences and shouting at each other, which is the exact way traditional battles are and have been fought with spears and swords or muskets and cannons. Both sides line up and size each other up, brandish their weapons, make bold declarations, and then charge.

Despite the many violent ANTIFA skirmishes against freedom and free speech advocates, Americans just have not yet charged at each other. This is because while the many normal Americans went to work, paid their taxes, mowed their lawns, volunteered, took their kids to Little League, another segment of the population was working hard at infiltrating and capturing institutions. Once captured, those institutions (Media, academia, education, unions, charitable foundations, all levels and branches of government, the Boy Scouts etc.) have been bent to the purpose of promoting leftist ideas and policies, to mainstream treasonous anti-America policies.

All of this infiltration and capturing has gone on under the feet of the normal Americans, the citizen taxpayers, who are just now beginning to wake up and realize that while they did their duty, others were doing their utmost to gain full control of our political institutions, in order to force a very non-free form of government upon us. A very non-America form of government.

Enjoy your Independence Day, friends. In between the beers and the hotdogs, you should consider talking with friends and family about current events, about how freedom and government accountability can be restored, how America can be brought back from the precipice on which it presently stands.

And maybe talk about an Independence Day redux, too.

Our family’s best and favorite summer vacation route

When our kids were younger, say from ages seven and up, we would take them on an annual vacation through Upstate New York. The trip was devoted mostly to Revolutionary War history, but also to American frontier history, American Indian history, and natural history. All kinds of historic forts dot  the Mohawk Valley, and in between these places are all kinds of incredible natural history places, like the Herkimer diamond mines in Middleville, Moss Island, and the Canajoharie River carved pool. Lots of places to fish at every stop and everywhere in between.

We always started at Fort Ontario in Oswego, NY, and working east we would end at Fort Ticonderoga on the New York/Vermont border. Since we started this trip the forts have all gotten better and better. Fort Ontario refurbished all of their cannons a few years ago. Fort Stanwix has been majorly upgraded and has regular re-enactments. And Fort Ticonderoga now has the biggest private cannon collection in America, so get your tickets to the night time cannon shoot.

The Mohawk River is now largely a canal, and from Oswego to Moss Island you can watch small pleasure boats that started in Florida being raised from lock to lock as they make their way to Lake Ontario, and then to the Ohio River and back down to New Orleans, where they will circle back through the Gulf of Mexico to Florida. Many of the boat owners will stand on the deck to make sure their boat does not bang into the walls of the locks, and they are happy to tell you all about their trip so far. A few years ago one guy told us how his wife had just left the boat and him, and had rented a car to drive home. By the time he expected to arrive back in Florida in the Fall, her things would be gone from their home and the divorce papers would be waiting for him on the dining room table. He actually seemed pretty cheerful about it and said he was still excited to complete the trip, even by himself. By the time he was done telling us this short story, his boat had gone from one end of the lock to the other and was about to start sailing up river.

Our kids had never heard such a thing in their lives, and it gave us plenty to talk about the rest of the trip.

So here is the Revolutionary War route that our family has taken many times over the years, often summer after summer. As our children gained age, they gained new abilities to comprehend and appreciate what they were seeing. Definitely start at Oswego, and do not miss Fort Stanwix. There are all kinds of places to stay each night as you make your way east. Most of them are inexpensive, and many are historic, the the old hotel in Rome, NY, which is actually pretty nice. We usually spend at least one night camping at the Herkimer KOA in Middleville, NY, where we will spend one day mining Herkimer diamonds and another day exploring Moss Island and the historic General Herkimer homestead, which has real cannons and lots of history.

The Oriskany Battlefield monument is one of those places you can’t believe no one talks about, and when you get there and learn and see what took place, you realize how the entire Revolutionary War’s outcome hinged on this one fierce battle between Mohawk Valley patriots and British Regulars, with Indians on both sides.

Moss Island is incredible; I won’t spill the beans and you have to go see for your self, but you absolutely have to go, wearing hiking boots or good trail sneakers. The little town there has a great ice cream store, and my kids always liked fishing under the bridge as well as at Moss Island.

The Canajoharie River has the carved rock pools you can wade in, which I do not identify on the map because I ran out of label room.

Saratoga Battlefield is where a certain famous and then infamous American general made his name. Fort Ticonderoga is AMAZING, and if you are able to get tickets to the night time cannon shoot from the ramparts, you will not be left unimpressed. Trip home to Central or eastern PA, or NYC/New Jersey, is via the NY Throughway south to any number of state routes and highways, depending on how much time you have. We usually do this trip in seven days, though it can be done in ten or even five. The Remington factory tour tickets should be secured beforehand. It is an incredible tour, or at least it was. I think we took it before OSHA stepped in and limited it. The museum there is excellent in and of itself.

I think most teenage kids will enjoy researching each of these sites ahead of time, and you parents can research where you want to stay each night.

PA Farm Bureau & PA Grange thieving property rights and gun rights

Who would think that two organizations I have always revered would turn out to be the absolute biggest threats to private property rights and our Second Amendment rights?

Sadly, it is true that the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and the Pennsylvania Grange have gone on a crusade against private property rights, hunting, and gun rights that has shocked everyone to the bone, most especially the traditional opponents of these activities like the Humane Society and CeasefirePA, who have now joined with them.

When the PFB and the Grange shack up with the Humane Society, a group dedicated to ending farming and animal husbandry as we know it, and with CeasefirePA, and against the NRA, then you know both organizations have gone off the rails. But the fact is, both PFB and the Grange are in full crusade mode right now, and there is no end in sight.

It all started with their opposition to expanding Sunday hunting in Pennsylvania. Including small game, groundhogs, or big game in Sunday hunting (presently limited to coyotes, foxes, and crows), somehow ignited a firestorm of indignation among the octogenarians running both of these organizations. Canes were rattled, and the political war was on against anyone advocating for more hunting opportunities in Pennsylvania. Every bit of political and legislative capital these two groups can muster has been brought to bear in every avenue of political decision making. The net result is not just that they are on record being against other people hunting on Sunday, but that our existing hunting rights, gun rights, and property rights are now being diminished and in the case of Sunday target shooting, at real risk. Until now, no one outside of the anti-gun CeasefirePA had been opposed to target shooting, especially on private property.

Pennsylvania is one of just THREE states in America that has no big game hunting on Sunday. So it’s not like Pennsylvanians asking for expanded Sunday hunting are on the fringe of some crazy movement. The rest of the country is already doing it.

But PFB and the Grange have acted as if Sunday hunting will end civilization as we know it, and they went to war with a scorched earth approach. Both organizations are now on record trying to eliminate even target shooting on Sunday, even on private land, let alone archery hunting on private land on Sunday. This has been an all-out political assault on private property rights and on our Second Amendment rights. What private property owners do on their own land on any day of the week is of zero consequence to anyone else, but PFB and the Grange have made it their business to control what you do.

Didn’t Pennsylvania pass the right-to-farm laws so that farmers could do what they need to do, seven days a week, without interference? Turns out that the organizations dedicated to farming are not dedicated to the actual farmers and property owners themselves. Not really. Lots of farmers and farmland owners want to hunt and shoot on Sunday.

Take the Grange. Their motto is “In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, in all things charity.”

Their mission is “Pennsylvania State Grange supports the local Granges to help members grow as individuals, unify their communities and create opportunity through legislation and community service.”

And yet the Grange is taking hard political positions exactly opposite of their motto and mission. There is no unity, liberty, or charity in their opposition to private property rights and to the Second Amendment. There is nothing helping members grow as individuals when the Grange stands in our way of hunting with our families and friends, on our own private land, when our complicated schedules allow for us to be together.

Beware these two organizations. They are prime examples of how a few people can hijack an organization and destroy its credibility in one swift and foolish move, and take our most sacred rights down the toilet with them.

Asking PA Fish & Boat to protect our best trout waters

June 17, 2019

Mr. Tim Schaeffer, Executive Director
Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission
1601 Elmerton Ave, Harrisburg, PA 17110

Dear Tim,

This past weekend I listened to a presentation about making Pennsylvania’s best, most productive trout streams “all-tackle,” which includes bait fishing. While the presentation was primarily about the newly acquired stretch of Spruce Creek, a clear timetable was laid out for making all of our best trout waters all-tackle over the coming three years.

Traditionally, or at least for several decades in many cases, these few hundred miles out of 80,000 miles of Pennsylvania waterways, have been restricted to artificial lures and flies. Those limitations were installed to protect trout from being gut-hooked or gullet-hooked by swallowing bait left to sit on the bottom of the waterway. Once a fish is gullet- or gut-hooked, it is guaranteed to die. This is fine for a put-and-take waterway, or for panfish, or for private waters. But for expensive stocked trout paid for by the license-buying fisherman, or even worse, for native reproducing trout, using bait is almost always a death sentence that eliminates the re-use (through catch and release) of that limited and valuable resource.

The main representation of this all-tackle proposal is that using bait in moving waters does not result in nearly as much fish mortality as once believed. Several studies or carefully observed fishing situations over the late 1990s to 2017 were cited as evidence.

Not having had the time to review this evidence, or to compare it to other factors like increasingly improved water quality state-wide, which resulted in better stream conditions and more trout, my concern is this proposal is moving too fast and asking too much. We just do not really know all that is happening in our best streams. The consequences of being wrong about this could easily set Pennsylvania’s best trout waters back, and it would take years to rebuild them to their current productivity. Additionally, we must consider the long road we have walked to educate anglers that trout and other sport fish are worth much more being released alive than they are being hung on a stringer and then stuffed into a freezer for a year. The cultural progress we have all made on this point has strengthened the use of fishing methods that strongly enhance the success of catch-and-release waters. Would allowing bait on all our catch-and-release waterways be taking a step backwards, after slowly, painfully teaching fishermen that a dead trout is much less useful or fun than a trout slipped back into the water alive to be caught again?

I request that PFBC staff conduct and issue their own wide-ranging analysis of catch-and-release bait fishing in moving waters before adopting anything beyond the Spruce Creek all-tackle catch-and-release stretch. If PFBC staff are confident that, under the right conditions, bait fishing will not result in undue or excessive fish mortality and the degradation of our hard-won resource, then that will be enough for me to drop my opposition. So long as the proper monitoring is in place to ensure that the decision is correctable, should new information develop.

Separately, it made me happy to see you appear officially in public in casual clothes, including shorts. The stuffy formality that used to attach to these executive director positions was a barrier to effectively reaching and communicating with the user communities. Easy but professional informality speaks volumes that you are most focused on solving substantive policy issues, good government, and on effectively connecting with the public, not on self-aggrandizement. What a breath of fresh air, it is exactly what Pennsylvania needs, thank you.

Sincerely yours,

Josh First

Four easy things you and I can do to reclaim college education

College education needs to be reclaimed if America is going to succeed in coming generations.

Getting a “college education” these days has zero to do with getting educated, and everything to do with being indoctrinated and shamed, coerced, and guilted into agreeing with extremist teachers just to get a passing grade. Nothing today about college is truly educational. College is 100% radical anti-America indoctrination, even for kids pursuing a technical or scientific degree, because the electives alone are Man-Hating 101, Sexual Confusion 202, Inconsistent & Hypocritical Argumentation 303, and Moral & Intellectual Relativism 404. Four years of this junk and even the brightest kid is gone.

Having put one of my kids through “America’s most liberal college,” and with another one being similarly indoctrinated with huge malfeasance at a second university, sensitivities to the mis-education of American youth are honed razor sharp around here.

If you are one of those easy going liberals who is just fine with your kid being barked at and browbeaten into submission by people you yourself would never hire into your own business, then shame on you for allowing your own child to be ruined. Your kid will not be prepared to think straight after undergoing the kind of nonsense now passing as college education. All your hard-earned money is being poured down a drain. I do not desire any of this for my kids.

College indoctrination is a soup of subjective notions and unprovable ideas that cannot stand the light of day, and it is for this reason that universities have circled their wagons with anti-free speech codes and all kinds of other unconstitutional foolishness meant to insulate the indoctrination from being challenged. And the few challengers are brow beaten and given poor grades.

No diverse or free thinking allowed for you!

So if you are interested in seeing universities once again become centers of learning and ideas, of critical thinking skills and robust debate, then here are some easy things you can do:

a) Do not donate a dime to your alma mater or graduate school. Don’t give them a penny, and if you feel like telling them why, do it, and tell your alumni association, too. Explain that you will not give one red cent toward political indoctrination and the crushing of free thought and individual liberty.

b) Write to your elected state representatives and demand that they eliminate faculty tenure from whatever your state university system is. Tenure is what shields the biggest losers, the most incompetent frauds from being outed as the academic nincompoops they are. Tenure was supposed to protect free thought; now tenure is used to eliminate free thought. Make every college professor at a state university work hard and compete for a five year contract. Make professors actually earn the money they are paid and the class room time they have. That will eliminate about 80% of the ideological foolishness now presented as “education,” and it will incentivize private colleges to follow the same course.

c) File a lawsuit against your kid’s university on behalf of your kid for all of the racial profiling, racial harassment, and racial discrimination now masquerading as being against “white privilege.” That phrase, “white privilege,” is a disgusting racist epithet meant to prepare people of a certain skin color for genocide. No two ways about it. If you said this about anyone else’s skin color, you would be rightly booted from polite company. So take it to the courts and get real justice, because under most state law public institutions and private institutions taking public money cannot engage in this kind of official racial discrimination. Lawsuits at NYU, Oberlin, and Google are paving the way. Join in, you just might win back your kid’s college tuition.

d) Write to your state representatives and demand that no further taxpayer funding be provided to schools where “white privilege” racism and anti-male discrimination is being taught or promoted, or any other fake racial/sexual nonsense is being bandied about as truth.

And again, if you are one of those liberal parents who is just so happy that your kids got degrees in gender studies, critical race theory, underwater basket weaving, and drawing rainbows for fifty thousand bucks a year, then you are dumb, foolish, even stupid, because those kids who did not undergo that trash will be out-thinking and out-competing your dumbed-down kids for the next fifty years. And it is all your fault; you were not just complicit in the ruination of your own children, you caused their failure.

Yeah, way to go Mom and Dad; great job.

Red oak and rain: Taking a strong economy for now while America fights for an even better future

Our present tariff battle with communist China has some personal pain associated with it, but I and everyone in business I deal with say we are ready and willing to put up with it for the long term betterment of America.

“I am just sitting here watching the rain come down,” says ‘D’, a young forester I have worked with for almost twenty years.

A super hard worker, risk taker, and fourth generation forester\logger (he is the first in his family to have a college degree, and in fact he has a Masters in Forestry), ‘D’ has a young family to feed and a great deal of investment in time, equipment, and standing timber that he cannot do anything with, or earn money with, so long as it rains.

With incessant rain like we had throughout 2018 and now well into 2019, most forestry operations stop. Marking timber on steep mountain sides, building roads into timber, cutting, skidding, and hauling timber just is not safe or environmentally possible in rain. Then, as a result, the sawmills slow down. They cannot get the trees they need to make the hardwood lumber products so much of America and the world require for flooring, cabinetry, moulding, doors, tables, furniture, etc.

But the rain is only part of the pressure on the timber industry.

Almost half of Pennsylvania’s hardwood timber economy is comprised of the red oak tree, which grows a beautiful wood used around the world. Until the tariff spat began last year, China was the primary destination for almost all of Pennsylvania’s red oak. China took our exported red oak logs and manufactured all kinds of wood products that they then sold back to American companies. When the tariffs started to bite in 2018, demand for red oak logs began to slow, because Chinese companies could not afford to compete on that new level playing field. Their own tariffs on manufactured American goods had protected them from competition, and so with tariffs on their products, their own manufacturing slowed down, and their decreased need for raw materials followed. A year later, the demand for red oak lumber has nearly died. Spectacular high quality red oak trees, that six months ago were highly sought after in a fiercely competitive free market, are now being turned into railroad ties and pallet wood (some wood workers specialize in making beautiful furniture from homely oak pallets; well, guys, get ready for a whole lot of very nice red oak pallets to become available).

Standing red oak trees have lost over half their value since this time last year, and as a result, roughly a third of Pennsylvania’s powerful hardwood lumber industry is at a stand-still, with landowners, foresters, loggers, and sawmills trying to figure out how to make up that lost productive time, and lost revenue, and to find another tree species to take the place of the red oak.

Back to the rain… the forest products industry can weather this storm, as well as the tariff tiff with China.

“It’s for the best, for a better America, a better economic future for all of us” says Mike, a heavy equipment operator from Renovo, Pennsylvania, to me this morning, as he finally found time to discuss a timber project we have together, and the China tariff effects on it.

Mike, too, is stalled out temporarily by the non-stop rains, and he is also bitten by the temporarily slow red oak market.

“It hurts, but we needed to do these tariffs,” says Mike.

“It’s sacrifice and pain now, so that America will have an even better economy in the future,” says ‘D’.

I feel the same way. Pain and sacrifice, risk taking and hard work, all for a better future for us and our children. We will all be creative and find ways to make a living; after all, overall the economy is very strong.

Carry on, Mister President. We understand what you are doing and why you are doing it. The tariffs hurt, but we support you.  It is about damned time that someone in Washington, DC, gave a crap about our country and we people who labor out of sight in flyover country.

Logger “Pete” takes a breakfast break on his log landing. A tough, super hard working little Irishman from central Pennsylvania, it’s Americans like Pete who keep our economy going from the ground up

In worship of the binary Mother goddess

Though this may be impolitic among the impolite society of the politically correct, I will today, Mother’s Day, testify to my worshipfulness of the Mother goddess.

So high has her self-denying patience been throughout my life, and especially my adult life, that I may see and call her a deity.

First she bore me, and my own, for nine long sweaty, uncomfortable months. Then in great pain, and long discomfort after, she birthed me and mine into this world, a gift, for better or for worse, to do with as we will, as we all might, our best, or best of our intentions.

Then, in great diligence and self-deprivation she watched over me and mine, warned me of the hot stove, bandaged my thrice-burned fingers, and held that same hand many years thence as I wound my way along a zig-zagging path, two steps forward and one backward, of mine own choosing, of all our own choosing.

Finally, she acted as grand-mother or grand-mother-in-training to mine own and her own, never once breaking the chain she forged with love.

Motherhood is both miracle and a curse. This miracle is of course obvious to all but those who would joyfully kill the fruit of the womb both on the tree and after it has fallen to within reach, unimaginable as this may be. Motherhood is a curse when those it has borne would kill all who follow in their path, or who show such unappreciation for the gift of life as to behave in ways that make the mother goddess sad for what she has borne to the world around her.

With all due disrespect to the anti-binary anti-Motherhood anti-child among us, Motherhood and her fruit is all that is good on our planet. Motherhood’s nurturing instinct from the moment of conception to the last of any of her breaths, is the best of human kindness, its quintessence.

Motherhood is the ultimate binary: A choice between good and evil, right and wrong, human and inhuman. Just like there is no kind-of pregnant, there is no kind-of Motherhood, no kind-of-fertile. Among all things human, the good and the bad, Motherhood is all-good; her motherly love is fertility itself. Everyone human knows this, and has known this since the dawn of our species.

Today the rainy streets and roads here are all but abandoned, silent testimony to the powerful instinct of humans to be with Mother, with family, to avoid unnecessary distractions. We all worship her, rightly so; or we should, anyhow.

An ancient “Venus” fertility figure from the dawn of human time, showing the special relationship between Mother and all who come from her. Among the many human civilizations around the planet, only materialistic Westerners have degraded Mother, and motherhood, and her fruit.

Paddling with Hollywood

Cheerfully our little crew paddled down the river, enjoying small Class II splashy whitewater rapids here and there, swift enough currents everywhere else that we need not really paddle much, if at all.

Turning aft, I squawked captain-like from my otherwise supine perch in the bow “Hard to the oars, ye pack o’ worthless lazy bones!”

The kids would laugh a bit at my best captain o’ the high seas bit, tepidly dip their paddles in the water like they were thinking about trying to paddle, and then go back to chattering amongst themselves about school, fellow students in school, classes, interpersonal politics and Politics with a capital P in school. Overall it was what had been hoped for when I made reservations with the outfitter the week before. Time with my kids and their friends, in nature, floating down a river, watching bald eagles, osprey, mergansers, wood ducks, migratory songbirds, deer, and on the lookout for bear.

Pausing to listen for and then spot white waterfalls cascading steeply out of the high canyon walls, I, the lookout, would occasionally point out where the crew could perhaps look up to if but briefly admire these little moments of grandeur passing by us. They did look the first half dozen times, and then tired of being bothered to do anything. I ended up dragging my hands in the cold foamy water, hoping to create some drag that would necessitate some serious paddling. When my hands turned red and then a purplish blue and stopped responding to commands to open or close, I gave up on influencing the kids in any way and just quietly admired the ride.

About two and a half hours into the drift, the kids started to sing. At first these were summer camp songs, and then theme songs from movies complete with beat-box noises from my daughter, and then songs from movies, mostly being rap-like. Their voices were sweet, and they would constantly run over each other, and then good-naturedly correct someone, and then try to get back on track in harmonic unison. Being of free and easy spirit, the kids were into having fun, and they would individually or together abruptly break out into a song-ending editorialization about the singer, the performer, the musician, or the movie the particular song came from.

The Earth Day environmental song, apparently popular now, was a big hit on our boat. They sang it over and over and over.

“And the zebra, I like how he says ‘I’m a zebra, I am striped, and I don’t know if I am black or if I am white’,” said the girl of this apparently surprising revelation, unaware that Dennis Prager, Rush Limbaugh, Larry Elder, and a slew of other radio talk show hosts and conservative politicians have been preaching an equal opportunity color-blind society for many decades.

And after about half an hour of back and forth chatter about this environmental planet cartoon movie and its song, it dawned on me that these kids are deeply enthralled by Hollywood and its entertainment business. They and their young impressionable minds are completely captured by images and made-up voices from highly paid songwriters and movie scripters, whose lines become memorized as moral guide posts along their young lives.

Many adults over the past ten or twenty years have bemoaned the advent of and then exponential increase in realistic at-home video games, the prevalence of handheld devices, and the trance-like state our children have grown up in glued to and Matrix-like plugged into these things. Well, I saw that we have transitioned beyond the gluing-in-and-tuning-out stage where we had to scream two inches from our kids’ face to ask them what they wanted for dinner.  Now we see the fruits of others’ indoctrination labors playing out over a decade or more: Our kids are wholly owned little robots of the entertainment industry, which is vacuous, morally bankrupt, materialistic, shallow, value-less, corrosive, and meaningless. No wonder our kids parrot all kinds of silly nonsense that emanate from movies and popular music; they are constantly bathing their brains in it.

And people like me thought the fight for America’s soul was a political one in Washington, DC!

Nope.

I learned on that day-long raft trip through spectacular natural beauty that the fight for a solid America is still at home, where we thought we had some influence, and we still might, and on college campus, where our parenting has been outsourced to welcoming Marxist professors eager to turn our kids inside out.

Yes, on this trip I had been paddling along with my kids and their friends, enjoying their happy company, but really I had been secretly and unknowingly paddling with Hollywood that whole way, and did not realize it until the very end, when I could say nothing.

The sea captain and his crew taking a break in a wondrous, magical waterfall in the middle of nowhere, on the run from Hollywood and pop culture

How I feel about my many liberal friends

If you have suffered abruptly ruptured friendships and precarious family relationships because of politics since Obama, you are not alone. You are among most people, especially if you have any independent, conservative, patriotic, or traditional pro-America beliefs. Obama brought with him the most divisive political atmosphere since the early Cold War, and his believers implemented that divisiveness with astounding aggression.

Here’s a small example.

A couple years ago I sold a really neat “vintage” National Park Service ranger hat to a lady in Texas via an online auction site. She was thrilled with the hat when it arrived, as it was described accurately, packed carefully, and she paid a fair price for it. She was happy about the exchange until she looked me up and saw what I believe. Suddenly she became unpleasant and full of nasty comments; about me, not that hat. Just to be sure, I used one of the many online services to look into her background, and sure enough, she was a rabidly partisan person who brooked zero disagreement. She judged me not by the happy transaction that had caused our paths to cross, but by whether or not I toed her political line.

Here’s another small example.

In early 2016 I was in detailed discussions with a woman in Vermont to buy her small business. It was perfect for what I can do and like to do, and for one of my kids. We got down to brass tacks, and she encouraged me to get my own website ready. I sent her the purchase contract and we set a mid-2016 date to meet and consummate the transaction. And then all hell broke loose. She had looked me up online and went from being an interesting and likable person to a hate-filled, snarling, angry jerk. The deal was off, because I had the “wrong” ideas, none of which had anything to do with the business we were going to transact.

And I am not even mentioning the many actual friends I have had, some for over thirty years, who have disavowed me, walked away from me, harangued me and then abandoned me, because I calmly disagreed with their assertions about politics and culture. It pains me even now to think how these paragons of virtue and open-mindedness behave so poorly, so intolerant of other views. Apparently traditional views that were A-OK in America for 220 years suddenly became so toxic and so, so bad, that anyone espousing them automatically had to be excommunicated, shunned, thrown overboard, humiliated, attacked, and so on.

It’s a crock o’ crap.

Since the 2016 election, liberals seem to have gone collectively lemming-like over a cliff and down into a pool of fiery, angry hate. Whether it is on a street where someone is simply wearing a MAGA hat (I don’t own one yet, but I do plan to get one; Nick Sandmann inspires me), or at a Trump rally, or on a social media site, liberals engage in physical violence, vandalism, and constant bullying of people they simply disagree with. They have worked themselves into a fantastically intolerant lather over election results they dislike, and gosh, they spare no one a full flaming if that person disagrees with them!

Even old friends who love them!

FakeBook’s censorious purge of conservative and independent voices (while retaining true haters), as well as Twitter and Instagram’s ongoing war on independent thinkers and conservatives (while allowing the Hamas terror group’s account to remain), is the natural result of all that intolerant hate for ideas and people who are not in lockstep with liberalism.

And of course I could do the same to them. I think liberalism is a cancer on America. I think the national Democrat Party has become the party of sedition and treason, that it has declared open war on America and its citizens, and that you can easily make the case for outlawing the party and legally punishing its members. I think Obama is an arch criminal who should swing. But all that does not mean I hate my liberal Democrat friends who liked or even adored Obama. That’s their business. I am not going to judge them because they made a mistaken choice about politics.

Here is a simple meme I made up tonight, from one of my favorite movies, “Some Like it Hot,” a truly subversive and pro-tolerance movie that still makes me involuntarily laugh out loud like a bleating camel or a braying donkey. This meme sums up my approach to remaining friends with liberals who, despite their best efforts to ruin our decades-long relationship, I still love and can still enjoy.

I’d say this is a model for how America should work. How it used to work. Tolerance, people, tolerance. We should still all be in the same boat, headed in the same direction, and at least respectful of one another. After all, nobody’s perfect.

Malcolm X warned us all about Harrisburg School District’s spectacular failure

Harrisburg School District is such a phenomenal, record-setting disaster that I will not repeat here even the barest and yet really most unbelievable facts involved with America’s worst school district. If you do not believe me that our local school district is really so bad, such a catastrophic failure, then go ahead and do an Internet search yourself. Type in “Harrisburg school district,” and you will find plenty of mind-bending substance about it, even in the teacher-union-friendly mainstream media, like the local Patriot News/pennlive.com.

Even Mayor Eric Papenfuse is joined by the very partisan, very liberal Pennsylvania Auditor General in targeting the city school district and its partisan teacher unions. For the uninitiated, across America teacher’s unions are the political henchmen of one political party, and they have destroyed countless public school systems in the pursuit of converting their dominance in the class room into a political power dominance. Using little black kids as sacrifices on the altar of political power, white liberal-dominated teachers unions have spread more destruction to American black families than any other single political entity or force. So when political partisans like Mayor Papenfuse and AG DePasquale, and their partisan media chums, go after one of their own, then you know it is really, really bad. And thus, by any measure, the Harrisburg School District is in really, really bad shape.

The problem is not just that the failed Harrisburg School District is “bad,” it is all of the avoidable collateral damage that surrounds it that makes it such an evil experience. Yes, as the school district has failed ever more spectacularly over the years, the taxes have similarly gone up and up while the few redoubts of sane living within the city proper have real estate values that correspondingly fall with those rising taxes. That then leads to white flight to safer, less taxing suburbs with successful public schools. Yes, there is open corruption. Yes, there is open, unmitigated professional incompetence. Yes, there is open self-serving political football by city council members, the teacher unions, and the city administration. Yes, there is open fraud and waste and abuse by everyone involved, from the janitors to the highest school officials.

But more than anything, this monumental failure of what should be the simplest public education is a symbol of one of America’s biggest failures: The domination of American black voters by white liberals.

No greater threat to Black success exists than the American white liberal. No greater racist against American blacks exists than the swarm of white liberals thrumming hive-like around every single black community, feasting parasitically off the automatic voting that American Blacks reflexively do for the one single political party of the white liberal.

Harrisburg school district is a symbol of what ails American blacks, because Harrisburg is like nearly every other major American city school district across our great nation: Black, broke, and Democrat.

That last factor, the Democrat part, is what has destroyed everything positive that emancipated slaves once brought to American industry, culture, and science. It is as if American blacks could not get enough abuse from their former Southern Democrat slave owners and Klansmen, and decided to throw in with their intellectual successors, the white liberals of the 1960s.

White liberals and their Uncle Tom capos have been selling poisonous snake oil to American blacks for well nigh 60 years now, and despite that long trail of failure, abject poverty, cultural deprivation, high crime, and misplaced anger, all nicely summed up right here in Harrisburg’s school district, American blacks continue to vote for the very people and the same failed ideas and philosophies that have led them to this incredibly bad place.

Malcolm X said it 55 years ago: American blacks who reflexively vote for the Democrat Party and for white liberals “are the biggest chumps in America.”

Malcolm X was no Republican, no political partisan. He fiercely wanted success and every sort of freedom for his fellow ex-slaves. What he warned them against was being used and dominated by the parasitic white liberal that right now infests the heart of every single failed black community across America. He wanted blacks to stop giving away their votes to people who promised them the rainbow and who yet delivered them ever increasing poverty and failure.

The first step to fixing the Harrisburg School District disaster is for Harrisburg’s black community to cease giving away their votes to the same people and philosophies that created this disaster in the first place. Clean house politically, look around for new ideas, and new voices to implement those new ideas. It will take time to fix, we know that, because sixty years of unwarranted loyalty to white liberals has sown a lot of poisonous seeds. To my fellow Harrisburg citizens, let me ask you this: What have you got to lose by trying something different? You have already lost just about everything  by voting for one political party and one failed philosophy. Give another party and philosophy a try.

Do it for yourself, do it for Malcolm X.

Malcolm X would have predicted the failure of Harrisburg School District, as he called American blacks who reflexively vote for white liberals and Democrats “the biggest chumps” and “traitors to your race.” White liberals own the Harrisburg school district debacle, and Malcom would have told us to expect that.