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Five Spice Donkey Meat: Coronavirus Lessons Learned

As the lab-grown Chinese Wuhan Flu coronavirus tornado has whipped around the planet, destroying people, families, businesses, hopes, dreams, savings, homes, careers, there are a few initial takeaway lessons we have learned so far.

Lesson 1: We cannot trust the media. The mainstream media (CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS, NPR, BBC, PBS, Washington Post, New York Times, Boston Globe etc) is full of politicized nonsense, not actual factual reporting.  After weeks of calling the Wuhan Flu the Wuhan Flu, the China Flu, and the Chinese Flu, because this virus comes from Wuhan China, mainstream reactivists (my own conjunction of reporter + activist) immediately began saying it was racist after President Trump called it the Wuhan Flu. So if the president says something, the mainstream media reactivsts immediately disagree with it and criticize it. After doing the same and saying the same thing themselves. This is obvious hypocrisy and reveals the media as a bunch of political activists, not news reporters. OK, so you knew this already, especially after the media has constantly parroted Communist China lies over the past few weeks. Well, now you know it even better.

Lesson 2: China is actively pursuing the domination of America. Through any means necessary, Communist China has demonstrated that they are like the German Nazi Party of eighty years ago and the Democrat Party of today. They are our avowed enemy. They will stop at nothing to dominate everyone around them, especially America, even if it means playing with strange fire like lab-grown viruses designed to wipe out entire enemy adult generations, so that only the inexperienced and defenseless young are left alive. Chinese efforts to undermine and dominate America are nothing new, but for thirty years Americans have been told by elected officials from BOTH political parties that it was in our own best interests to give all of our technology, jobs, money, and security to China. Well it turns out that this globalism impoverishes Americans while further enriching a small handful of oligarchs. And now we see that Chinese domination of our pharmaceutical industry is not a benefit to us, and is in fact a great risk to our survival.

Lesson 3: Everything China makes is contaminated and dangerous. China has no environmental regulations and very few food regulations. Their rush to industrialize at any cost has resulted in tremendous environmental damage and the contamination of their food, soil, and water. This week we were treated to a video of a sick Chinese worker deliberately coughing into a shipment of new face masks bound for America, in order to further infect Americans. Five years ago the “Five Spice Donkey Meat” scandal in China demonstrated just how badly Chinese foods are adulterated, infected, and contaminated with a God-knows-what mix of dangerous chemicals and pathogens. Even donkey and fox meat, which are actually (unbelievably) succulent delicacies in China, alongside snakes, bats, cats, rats, wombats, dogs, hogs, and monkeys, are infected; not just baby milk powder and apple sauce sold to America. Anything we import from China is full of nasty chemicals, viruses, and bacteria. Including food, medicine, and clothing. Don’t let it in here.

Lesson 4: Buy American – Putting America First means protecting American Health. Putting America first in all things means that we will now question whether or not certain practices are in fact actually good for Americans. Whether or not cheap labor and cheap products from China are desirable in the short term, we as a nation will now always ask “Is this good for America and her citizens, my neighbors?” If the answer is either No or Probably Not, then we will re-patriate whatever goods were being made elsewhere and have them made here. Having things made here in America, subject to our own regulations, high expectations. and standards, will give us control over our destiny and health. Including physical and financial health.

Lesson 5: Secure American Borders equals Secure American Citizens, so Force the Issue. In early February, US senator Chuck Schumer (Democrat) and US Congressthing Nancy Pelosi (Democrat) accused President Trump of being a “racist” for implementing a travel ban from abroad. Literally four weeks later these same two fools accused President Trump of not having enacted a travel ban soon enough. All kinds of dangerous diseases, dangerous drugs, dangerous people, sex slave trafficking, child prostitution, child molesters, and violence have been pouring over and through America’s open borders into our towns and cities. This is happening only because the Democrat Party has been totally devoted to having our borders remain wide open, for their own short term political gain. A willingness to trade off the health and safety of American citizens for the benefits of law breakers and parasites should demonstrate to any open minded person that the Democrat Party and its criminal assistants like La Raza and the ACLU are guilty of treason and crimes against the American people. All of these groups should get big bills from the United States Treasury for the damage they have wrought on innocent Americans. China should get a big bill for the widespread destruction that their Chinese Wuhan China Virus has wrought, too. Close America’s borders and get control of who and what gets in here.

 

Why having your own philosophy of government is American

It is American nature for each individual citizen to have a philosophy of government. That is, to have a firm idea of how you want and expect all levels of government to relate to you, to serve you, to represent you, and to respect you.

Maybe there are too many syllables in this, so let’s just say that every American citizen should have a belief in how they want to relate to their own government, at every level – local, state, and federal.

From America’s founding until right now, our entire nation is still predicated upon the expectation of direct citizen involvement in every aspect of what makes America work: Voting in every election, staying updated and informed on the political and cultural issues of the day, participating in jury selection when called upon, serving on school boards, local zoning and planning boards, etc.

America is a citizen-run nation. That is how we were founded. Consent of the governed. Right now, a surfeit of material success has put many Americans almost to sleep. They are too busy taking care of their own individual desires to look up and participate in the larger happenings around them. They are almost believing that American government is on autopilot, and that their participation is unnecessary. Once American citizens stop participating in how government is run, then automatically people will step in who use government for their own benefit. Self-enrichment, long undeserved careers paid for by the taxpayers, funneling limited taxpayer money to interest groups who then work hard to get career politicians re-elected, selling American interests and secrets to foreign government, these are just a few examples of the problem.

No longer are career politicians “public servants.” Now career politicians are self-servants who use government to enrich themselves and their friends and family. Examples include politicians from both political parties at all levels. Joe Biden (D) and Richard Burr (R) are just two easy low-hanging examples. Biden used his public vice president office to get undeserved contract work for his sons in Ukraine. Burr used his position as US senator to sell his stocks before they lost value, an act on private information about potential stock losses, which is insider trading.

Across government entrenched bureaucrats make decisions every day that determine or influence the paths of our life. Somehow these “public servants” have also aggregated huge power, with little to no accountability. Many of these bureaucrats quite clearly demonstrate their own philosophy of government. They believe in the overwhelming coercive force of government intruding directly into individual lives. They believe in the diminution of the Bill of Rights that protects our individual freedoms, rights, and liberties. They believe in death-by-a-thousand-cuts regulations that render a great deal of American life almost meaningless and almost illegal. They believe in all kinds of specific policies that are totally at odds with the rights, freedoms, and liberties that Americans have always enjoyed.

The “Waters of the United States” regulation emitted by US EPA in the last administration is a classic example. People’s private rights were trampled beneath the coercive weight of government control, with very small benefits.

While the establishments of both political parties, nationally, are not terribly far apart on some aspects of governance, it is fair to say that the Democrats believe in crushingly big government and unlimited coercive force to achieve their policy goals, while Republicans believe in free markets and free choice.

Party responses to the Wuhan Chinese Flu (coronavirus, covid19) are instructive. The Democrats have tried to use the virus to achieve policy goals they could not otherwise gain through the political process or from the voters. Things like enormous amounts of regulation on individuals and business sectors, and enormous amounts of taxpayer cash paid to their private sector supporters. Democrat attempted extortion of sick Americans held up passage of a covid19 relief package last week. Democrats are using the Wuhan Chinese Flu crisis to gain political power and control over Americans, and to artificially damage the American economy and President Trump. Democrats will destroy America to try to wrest control of it. Sick Americans who die from this are simply collateral damage to them.

So, if you have not yet developed your own philosophy of government, now is a very good time to do it. Events happening right around you demand that you participate in some way.

Determine your philosophy of government based on your own principles and values.

Do you believe in the pre-eminence of the free citizen, and the innate smallness of government, as defined by the Bill of Rights? Or do you believe in a Marxism-inspired vision of wealth redistribution, open borders, endless streams of illegal aliens into America, and endless amounts of taxpayer money given freely to these aliens, even while it is tightly withheld from the very American citizens who paid it in the first place?

My own philosophy of government is based on America’s founding documents (Declaration of Independence, Constitution, Bill of Rights) and their promise of free and equal opportunity for all citizens. This means I work for a government that is a big safety net, with arms and legs sticking out of it, and not the over-reaching nanny state that micromanages and dictates every breath we take.

Why I am politically active

From my earliest years until now, I have been politically active. It is a drive inside me like others have to eat, breathe, or sleep. Literally, I cannot live without being an active participant in America’s political process.

No question about it, most people call me a “politico.” That is, a person who eats, breathes, drinks and lives politics. Not everyone is wired this way, of course. And what an annoying place every place would be if everyone were so tightly wired that they were all this politically minded, and did nothing but speak of politics. Everything would be political talk all the time. And if someone did not bring up the great taste of the day’s chicken salad lunch, it would be a very boring conversation indeed.

And yet, I still cannot help but be slack-jaw amazed when I meet a person who says “Politics don’t interest me and I have no time for them. No, I do not vote.”

Almost as ineffective are those people who say “I vote, and that is all I have time for.”

Voting is part and parcel of being an American, and yet, it alone is not enough.

A person must volunteer on political campaigns, put out yard signs, go door to door for good candidates, make phone calls for candidates, and donate money. Even ten bucks to a candidate makes a difference, makes a statement, sends a message.

If every vote matters, and we know that is true, then even more true is that every political activist matters so much more. Political activists influence voters and channel how votes are cast. One voter is one vote, while one political activist might equal a hundred votes, or many more.

After the American Revolution, Benjamin Franklin noted that (roughly) 33% of the Americans had been Tories, Loyalists to the British crown. Another 33% had been Patriots, risk-takers dedicated to the unique idea that government derives its legitimacy from the consent of the governed. And then there was another one-third of the population, the 33% who were disinclined to be politically active, to take sides, and who often said they were too busy running their farms and businesses to get involved in politics. These politically disengaged people were willing to go whichever way the wind blew. If Britain successfully re-asserted her claims to America, then this one third would have hung the Union Jack out their window and been happy British subjects. As it turned out after the Patriots won, they were at least just as happy to have gained freedom and opportunity unlike they had imagined possible.

So even during the foremost conflict in then-modern human history, when the toughest choices had to be made, roughly one third of Americans were disengaged politically from a process that was playing out all around them.

Fast forward a couple centuries, and roughly fifty to seventy percent of Americans are politically disengaged. Not politically involved. And many of those who are politically involved do so for financial reasons, which is not the most pure or healthy motive.

Not too long ago, a former drab government clerk-nobody observed “Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.”

What Albert Einstein meant by his quote is that so few people maintain their own independence of thought and inquiry; that too many people allow others to direct them on their way through life. To tell them what to think and how to feel, instead of determining for themselves what is correct and what is untrue.

Apparently I am one of those people who wants to know for himself, so that my own feelings can be true to myself, true to my principles. Outsourcing decisions about my life to someone else, who probably does not care about my life, is not something I will do willingly. I highly recommend this approach, because to do so is to take one’s destiny in hand and make the best for it, while otherwise a person becomes a sheep. A victim. And sheep go to slaughter. And that is what Benjamin Franklin meant in 1776 when he said that Americans “have a Republic, if you can keep it.”

Takes a lot lot of work to hold on to what Americans have. A lot of political work. Can you step up and lend a hand?

Why I write and keep a blog

Most people keep their opinions to themselves, at least initially, and so they might wonder why a person maintains an opinion blog. Many other people simply do not like to write, and so they might wonder why other people do write on purpose. Hopefully both questions can be answered here.

Let’s start with why I write.

Simply, I write because I really like to write. Just like other people really like chocolate, or listening to certain music. It is an urge in me like some people have to play music, paint, sing, perform in plays, or downhill ski. I enjoy writing because it gives me a sense of satisfaction that very few other things provide. Writing comes naturally to me, and although I am a good public speaker and I always welcome opportunities to speak publicly, writing really gives me my best opportunity to be creative.

And that is it in a nutshell; writing is my own best possible act of creativity. Because I suck crap with tools and wood. My mechanical skills are up there with Cro Magnon man inventing the stone wheel, maybe. No one wants to hear my opinions any more, so writing is what I got left.

I was not always a competent writer. Although I did pretty well writing for English teachers in high school, it was a couple writing classes at Penn State that helped me focus on writing as an act of personal self-expression. As opposed to simply reporting facts. One of the courses was business writing and communication, and the other was creative fiction writing. Were any of my kids to take these college courses today, I would accuse them of wasting my hard-earned money on tom-foolery. But for me, some 38 years ago, these two courses brought together an inner passion, a need, and the mechanics of how to meet that need.

Now, when we couple that urge to write with perhaps the most openly opinionated person you have ever met, the blog naturally follows. A blog gives me the ability to explain why and how I think about substantive issues, and also to exercise that creative urge.

You might ask how or why I became so opinionated. And the simple and honest answer is, I have always been a pain in the ass in this department. That is, The Niggling Facts and I Want to Know Why and That is Not Fair Department. Maybe that is three separate departments, but I am putting them all in one. Probably my best personal trait is the one that gets me into the most scrapes, the That is Not Fair department. What most people simply accept as a daily parade of selfish and dishonest acts, I just cannot take. My sense of justice and my severe opposition to all forms of injustice is hard-wired into me. I hate cheating and lying, double standards, and general acts of phoniness. Can’t help it.

It all started because I was that little kid at the super market who said loudly “Mom, that man has three eyes. Why does that man have three eyes, Mom? Hey mister man, why do you have three eyes?”

And in fact, the art of being annoying and articulate just kept on improving from that point over the years. Add some adult experiences and voila!, we have a blog writer.

Most people do not have the luxury of expressing their opinions on everything from toilet paper hoarding to three-eyed politicians and the scum-sucking self-serving sycophants who enable them. I am not sure I have this luxury, either, but I have made sure to be able to afford it. Because if I did not express myself through politics and or public policy, I would have to find some other way to convey opinions that I believe are well reasoned and fair. Having failed to attain elected office, and having self-quarantined myself from taxpayer-funded public agency death-trap jobs that most Americans would kill for, all I have left is either sitting at a bar somewhere, getting drunk, and ranting away about politics to whoever will sit close enough to listen to me, or writing the blog.

I choose the blog.

PA Gov. Wolf’s fatwa

A fatwa is an Islamic edict issued by a senior Muslim Cleric. Most fatwas involve placing a bounty on some poor soul’s head, or placing some poor soul’s head on a stick, for some imaginary religious infraction. While liberals may not share that religious perspective per se, they do share the same love of issuing these cross-this-red-line-and-die edicts.

And so Governor Tom Wolf has issued his own fatwa in the name of public health, supposedly due to potential risks of spreading covid19, the coronavirus. But the fact is that this edict does very little to minimize potential infection, and greatly increases it while also dropping an atom bomb on Pennsylvania’s economy.

Wolf’s edict yesterday essentially commands all business to shut down yesterday. Like close the doors, send everyone home, and sit inside and wait. No lie here, no exaggeration, and the order is made more confusing by using the standard “essential” businesses.

Aren’t all businesses essential to the people who work in them? If you have made life-changing investments in your own small business, then keeping it going would seem awfully essential. And if your job is your sole source of income, then being able to go to your job as much as you can, so you get paid, would seem awfully essential. And if your business is the main place of employment in a small community, isn’t it also essential?

The greatest mystery of Wolf’s edict is that it is openly self-contradictory.

For example, pulp mills can stay in operation, but not the logging operations or forestry support necessary to get the wood products to the mills. That is to say, a guy in a skidder on a hillside way the hell out in the middle of nowhere is hereby forbidden by Governor Wolf from doing his job. Nor can the guy running the chainsaw; he too must sit at home. Also forbidden by Wolf. Because of supposed risk of exposure to or spreading covid19. If you ask me, a guy in a bulldozer or a skidder working in the woods has self-quarantined. But farming can continue on as usual, of course.

The list of the order’s mindless and mutually contradictory restrictions and allowances goes on and on for several pages. A friend of mine who works in the Wolf Administration tells me the list was probably written by an urban kid with no exposure to real life.

Of course his order says that all beer distributors can stay open! No one will ever meet there and mix!

So it seems that 90% of Pennsylvanians will be going to their local beer distributor to get Corona brewskis, and then go hang out together and barbecue together and eat together. Because the schools are all closed and the kids will be home driving their parents crazy. Because there is nothing else to do than socialize. And thus will Governor Tom Wolf not eliminate or reduce the potential for the spread of covid19…he will actually make it worse, by forcing everyone in the state to have a big hang out while bureaucrats sit around and think up other ridiculous boomerang restrictions for the rest of us to follow.

“Hi, we are from the government and we are here to help you.”

Run!

Flumageddon II: Medical Community Asleep at Wheel

Since 1918, when the first known flu pandemic (named “war fever” because it resulted from the trench warfare conditions of World War I) swept the planet and killed about twenty million souls, the Western medical profession has known all about the danger of flu viruses.

No mystery here. None. Everyone who is a doctor today is at least aware of the flu and has studied it to some degree. And since 1918, SARS, Swine Flu, and some other deadly flu viruses have swept through Asia and America, leaving tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of people dead as a result. We have had plenty of warning about dangerous flu bugs. Plenty of time and opportunity to prepare.

Now in 2020 enter coronavirus19, which is the 19th known iteration/ strain of the corona virus, a well-known flu bug. But this time, the medical community has been caught absolutely flat-footed, unprepared, deer-in-the-headlights surprised. World-respected “DOCTOR” Anthony Fauci at NIH has openly stated that America is not as prepared as other countries to deal with this, and he openly wonders why this is….

Hello, Doctor Fauci, you have been a self-declared expert on flu viruses and other mass diseases for decades. And now you say that America is not prepared? Have you looked in the mirror lately to find the answer about WHY we are not prepared?!

Who else was supposed to prepare America for these dangerous diseases IF NOT YOU and your fellow doctors? Where the hell have you guys been all these years?

I mean, was there a prior massive call by doctors for flu testing kits and masks and all the other protocols and preparatory steps to defend against a flu pandemic, and the elected officials neglected to meet that call? If so, then we need to know about it. We need to know who dropped the ball and placed Americans at risk.

And no, oh no, no, you cannot blame the guy who just walked into the room. The one guy who knew nothing about this until weeks ago, like the rest of the public. The one guy who has not spent his career in government, or in medicine, or in critiquing government and medicine and public health, but who has spent just over three years total in government, Donald Trump, THIS is the guy who is supposed to take the blame? No, no way.

Please excuse my all-caps here, but I don’t know how else to convey in writing the feelings of amazement and disgust I feel for seeing the supposed best and brightest in Western Civilization literally pass the buck to the least culpable person on the planet.

Coronavirus19 has become a political football, only because a single political party and its communications arm, AKA “the media,” has politicized this flu bug, just like they have politicized literally every other thing that this president has said or done. Only because this one political party and its propaganda arm want to create hysteria and blame for political gain is this hysteria and medical failure now happening. Every other flu that has come and gone and left tens of thousands of people dead in its wake have been left up to the facts of life. Already this “flu season” about 20,000 Americans have died from “the flu.” And another ten thousand Americans are expected to die before the flu season ends this spring. No one was ever blamed before for any of this, least of all an American president.

So why now? Hmmmm?

What really irks me about lazy and incompetent doctors is that their hospitals are the most dangerous places to go. If you want to really get sick, or even die unexpectedly, then go stay in a hospital. Not only will you be unnecessarily exposed to lots of germs that can kill you, but you will also be exposed to massive doses of medical malpractice and incompetence. Hospitals and the doctors in them are extremely dangerous to public health. That is a cold numeric fact. And it is a fact that Americans accept, because we presume that the risks of not having those very same hospitals is higher than having them.

Doctors make the worst policy people. The very worst. Because unrealistic and impractical zero risk is usually what doctors demand; from everyone else. They usually want to spend huge amounts of money to reduce minor risks to almost zero percent chance of happening. And yet they themselves are often walking, talking killing machines, dispensing oopsies and my-bads right and left as they step over the twitching corpse of their latest malpractice victim and go on to the next one. Look at the stats on this!

These are the same doctors who tell Americans that all guns are bad, and that guns kill by themselves, and that we cannot possibly have guns in our homes. Yet, statistically speaking, if you have a doctor in your home, you are at much greater risk for a whole host of gruesome deaths than you are from a gunshot.

These are the same doctors and medical know-it-alls who have dropped the public health ball with coronavirus19 and are now pointing their fingers at the American president.

You must be kidding me. No, you are not going to fool me, not this time. Not again. If any mistake has happened with coronavirus19, it is squarely on the shoulders of the medical and public health communities. And it is made worse by the silly media hysteria causing people to fight over rolls of toilet paper and to hoard canned vegetables. It is quite literally an insane situation, brought to us by lazy doctors, lazy bureaucrats, and evil political activists who will burn down America in order to get control of America.

Flumageddon shines spotlight on failed US bureaucracy

The Wuhan Flu aka coronavirus has resulted in a Flumageddon hysteria that has damaged America’s economy and forced millions of students to stay at home, supposedly “study online,” and pester their working parents.

Flumageddon has shut down public meetings, schools, and work environments coast to coast. Almost everything that Americans take for granted has been stopped cold by it. Entire cities on both coasts are entering constitutionally questionable lockdown status, where the citizenry may have to “shelter in place” just like the ancient Hebrews did in Egypt, as God’s death plague worked its way through the first born of humans and animals alike.

Why are we here? What on earth happened to bring the freest, most technologically advanced nation to this point?

Was America really, truly unprepared for this moment?

Two things happened that got us here.

First, China has been doing everything it can, in literally every way possible, to undermine, hamper, damage, and take over America. China is a socialist tyranny, and so they have been able to direct hundreds of millions of Chinese to sit at keyboards all day every day with the goal of filing fake Trademark applications with the US Patent and Trademark Office in DC, and to hack into credit card companies, and to hack into everyday websites, and to post antagonistic messages on websites, and to play around with ordering and then canceling American products and services, and so on. Not to mention the 500,000 Chinese fake “researchers” posted at American research institutions. They are spies, really, stealing our knowledge out from under us in the phony name of open-ness and tolerance and diversity and other meaningless nonsense.

The tentacles of China are long and many, its parasitic sapping of America’s strength a long-held accepted fact.

And nothing allowed China to wreak its havoc on Americans more than people in BOTH Democrat and Republican parties allowing it to do so openly and in plain view. Because a handful of ultra wealthy wanted to be even more ultra wealthy. And they share a bit of that wealth by giving it to re-election campaign funds of careerist politicians, who hold on to power and do China’s bidding in American policy and law. Thus were American jobs and factories outsourced to China, and basically everything good America has or had was literally handed to China. All for thirty pieces of silver, on top of the thirty pieces of silver that had already been handed out a million times before to just a handful of highly placed recipients. Traitors to America, really.

So China’s Wuhan Flu is a direct product of the artificial and unhealthy economic relationship between our two nations, maintained by a billion people in China and just a few thousand people in America. Wuhan Flu spread through the world, and into America, because of an unnaturally open one-way relationship, and a criminally porous American border.

Second, Flumageddon happened because American bureaucrats are an incompetent and lazy bunch, artificially protected by artificially way-way-way over-generous personnel rules.

Career bureaucrats at Centers for Disease Control and the National Institutes of Health and the Federal Drug Administration have been unprepared for this moment for decades, despite plenty of warning shots from SARS and Swine Flu before. Instead of developing flu testing kits and extensive steps for combating Wuhan Flu, career bureaucrats at CDC, NIH, FDA and a host of satellite agencies and state offices, all took long lunches on the forgotten taxpayer’s dime. They posed and preened and presented themselves as dispassionate arbiters of public health interests. And in fact, when the moment of truth arrives, we see that they are simply lazy and incompetent. In China, which so many of our federal bureaucrats love because of its ruthless efficiency and all-powerful government, they would all have been shot in the back of the head by now for their failure.

Instead, we are treated to a host of foolish talking heads from CDC and NIH who are, in fact, partisan political activists using their public positions to advance a political campaign to discredit the one person who has absolutely no blame for Flumageddon: President Donald Trump, who, unlike 95% of Congress and 100% of the federal bureaucracy, has NOT been in government his entire career.

Flumageddon is not even Obama’s fault, though he did experience at least one, arguably two, fatal flu public health events, and, therefore, Obama could have directed CDC and NIH and FDA to begin making testing kits and vaccines. In anticipation of future outbreaks. Nope, the fault really lies with our open borders mentality, which carries nation-ending risks, and with our lazy, incompetent, over-protected, entitled, unaccountable bureaucrats, who then cement the open borders risks into stone.

In order to pound down Americans even more, and make us more pliable, more amenable to their supposed solutions. Which are always more and bigger and more powerful government intervention into our lives.

Interesting how this works. The symmetry was so clean and easy. Until Trump came along and challenged it. Cue the hysteria…

 

Missing Vera

The lady had the grace of an angel.

An easy smile, a quick wit and light heart, yet with incisive comments that always supported someone in the room and advanced the discussion, Vera was new to me a couple years ago. And yet here I am writing a brief obituary about her because of her powerful life force.

Many other people were fortunate enough to enjoy her for much longer than I. And now that she is gone, probably from a heart attack at her home, Vera’s life and positive way serve as a reminder to make every moment we have on this earth count, take nothing for granted, and always do our best, with a smile on our face, if possible.

Vera Cornish has been described as an effective life coach, book author, education consultant, and a host of other professional activities that really just scratched the surface of her excellent personality and capabilities.

I met Vera two years ago at a Dauphin County commissioners’ meeting. She walked up to me afterwards and introduced herself, and immediately I felt I was in the presence of an angel. Nice lady. And not light and airy or phony, but very smart and direct.

We have served together on the Detweiler Park Steering Committee since its inception, and every single time she was there she had a calming effect, because she was so centered. Not that anyone is seriously disputatious at the meetings planning a new 411-acre county park, but Vera’s force could be felt there every time.

I did not really know Vera Cornish, not as a friend, not well, and that only by working with her for a year. But whenever she saw me outside of our meetings, she came up to say hello in the nicest way, her eyes sparkling, just 100% positive energy. She was just as positive and peaceful at our park meetings. She was said to be this way in all other public and private encounters.

I wish I had some of Vera’s impressive qualities. Heck, I wish the world were made of Vera Cornishes. Great lady, with attributes the world can use a lot more of. You will be missed, honey.

Purple woad. Or why hunting leases

Leasing land to hunt on is a big thing these days, and there is no sign of the phenomenon decreasing. Most of it is about deer and turkey hunting.

Hunting leases have been popular for a long time in states with little public land, like Texas, but the practice is now spreading to remote areas like suburban farms around Philadelphia and Maryland. So high is the demand for quality hunting land, and for just finding a place to hunt without being bothered, and so limited is the resource becoming, that leasing is a natural step for many landowners who want to get some extra income to pay their rent or fief to the government (property taxes aka build-a-union-teacher’s-public-pension-fund).

Having been approached about leasing land I own and manage, it is something I considered and then rejected. If a landowner at all personally enjoys their own land themselves, enjoys their privacy there, enjoys the health of their land, then leasing is not for you. Bear in mind that leasing also carries some legal liability risk, and so you have to carry sufficient insurance to cover any lawsuits that might begin on your land.

Nonetheless, some private land is being leased, having been posted before that. And the reason that so many land owners are overcoming the same hurdles that I myself went through when considering land leasing, is that in some cases the money is high enough. Enough people want badly enough to have their own place that they can hunt on exclusively, that they are willing to pay real money.

Makes you wonder what kind of population pressures and open land decreases America has seen over the past fifty years to lead to this kind of change in land use. Makes me think of one anecdotal experience.

On the Sunday of Memorial Day Weekend of 2007, I drove up to Pine Creek to dig the footers for our barn. All the way up I shared the road, in both directions, with two motorcyclists headed in my same direction. That is it. In addition to my pickup, a grand total of two vehicles out for a Sunday drive in the country were on Route 44 and Rt 414.

Fast forward 13 years and my gosh, Pine Creek Valley has nonstop traffic in both directions at all hours. It does not matter what the time of day or night is, there are vehicles going in both directions. And not just oversize pickup trucks possibly associated with the gas drilling occurring around the area. Little tiny dinky tin can cars are going up and down the valley, too. There are literally people everywhere here now, in what had been the most remote, undeveloped, quietest corner of rural Pennsylvania. Even if you go bear hunting on some sidehill in the middle of nowhere up in Pine Creek Valley, you will encounter another hunting gang or two. Which for bear hunting is actually a good thing, but the point being that there are people everywhere everywhere everywhere in rural Pennsylvania.

OK, here is another brief anecdote. Ladies, skip ahead to the next paragraph. About ten years ago I was fishing on the north end of the Chesapeake Bay. When I was finished for the day, I drove back north toward home. At one point I had an urge to pee, so I began looking for a place I could pull off and pull out, without offending anyone. Yes, I have my modest moments. And you know what? The entire region between The Chesapeake Bay’s northern shores and the Pennsylvania Mason-Dixon Line, is completely developed. Like wall-to-wall one-two-three-acre residential lots on every inch of land surface. At the one place that finally looked like I was finally going to get some relief, I stepped out of the car and was immediately met with a parade of Mini Coopers and Priuses driving by on the gravel road to their wooded home lots. There was literally people everywhere, in every corner, in every place.

So what happened here?

There are more people and there is more land development, both of which leading to less nice land to hunt, fewer big private spaces for people to call their own, and so that which does exist is in much higher demand.

Enter Pennsylvania’s new No Trespassing law. AKA the “purple paint” law.

Why was this new law even needed? Because the disenfranchised, enslaved Scots-Irish refugees who originally settled the Pennsylvania frontier by dint of gumption, bravery, and hard work had a natural opposition to the notions and forms of European aristocracy that had driven them here. Such as large pieces of private land being closed off to hunting and fishing. And so these Scots-Irish settlers developed an Indian-like culture of openly flouting the marked boundaries of private properties. Especially when they hunted.

And this culture of ignoring No Trespassing signs carries forth to this very day.

Except that now it is 2020, not 1820, and there are more damned people on the landscape and a hell of a lot less land for those people to roam about on. Nice large pieces of truly private land are becoming something of a rarity in a lot of places. Heck, even the once-rural Poconos is now just an aluminum siding and brick suburb of Joizy.

So in response to our collision of frontier culture with ever more valuable privacy rights, Pennsylvania now has a new purple paint law. If you see purple paint on a tree, it is the equivalent of a No Trespassing sign. And if you do trespass and you get caught, the penalties are much tougher and more expensive than they were just a few months ago.

And you know what the real irony is of this purple paint stay-the-hell-out boundary thing? It is a lot like the blue woad that the Celtic ancestors of the Scots and Irish used to paint their bodies with  before entering into battle. Except it is now the landowner who has painted himself in war paint.

Isn’t life funny.

collusion with Russia meddling is real and happening

No doubt about it, Russia has been meddling in America’s elections for decades. It is one of the weaknesses that an open society like ours has, and which a closed, authoritarian society like Russia (and China) do not have. The nature of our democratic process leaves America vulnerable to tampering from without and to treason from within. And in our universities, our corporations, and our news outlets. And so it is not news anywhere that some Americans have been colluding with Russia in its meddling since forever, like since the 1920s.

Looking back on the 1930s responses to open treason and the 1950s “Red Scare” and the resulting Hollywood blacklisting of Americans openly colluding with Russia in the attempted murder of America, it seems the problem’s surface was only scratched then. Groups like the ACLU, founded by open communists (Roger Baldwin – “Communism is the goal”), are still active and incredibly destructive today.

And even more so, we have a a political party whose leaders now openly identify as “Democratic Socialists.” They are not even hiding their actual allegiances any longer.

Yes, we see the American young people flocking to this Democratic Socialism Free Stuff banner. It is surprising and painful, because it is so at odds with the self-reliance and independence that marked American culture from our very beginning.

It is a fact that my wife and I have been complicit with others in our generation and the generation before us in absolutely spoiling rotten our kids, and priming them for this Free Stuff movement. Giving them everything, demanding from them very little. And sonofabitch, wouldn’t ya know it, when the little bastards grew up to teens and twenties, they actually expected everything for FREE. We trained our own kids to be this way.

Even though I had done my best to require from my kids home chores before dinner, or before fun time, I think I was like a lot of other old fashioned dads who also collided with our beloved wives on this.

As dads, we were boys once. And as boys, we in our generation were expected and often aggressively forced by our dads to work our butts off all the time, to do chores, in order to earn TV time, to earn a bicycle, to earn telephone time after homework was done, and so on. God bless our good wives today, they love our children so very much, they can’t imagine hurting their feelings by always backing us up on enforced chores. Making the children do chores gets in the way of their homework, ya know…hey, are you doing your homework or scrolling through endless humorous memes over there?

God help the dad who demands chores from the kids! Even my own son, my pride and joy, a good kid, the ‘mini me’ who is supposed to grow up to be smarter, stronger, faster than me, when tasked with helping fill our wood sheds with enough split firewood for the winter said “Well, that doesn’t sound like very much fun.” And then pouted about not being able to spend that time with his buddy.

So now America has one, maybe two generations of young people who really expect everything to simply be handed to them. Without having to work for it at all. Free participation trophies for everyone. Contrast this to the old days, a mere thirty or forty years ago, where young people expected to eventually inherit from their parents, but only after working very hard to achieve much on their own.

And so here we are, Crazy Bernie Sandals and every single other Democrat candidate for president, is promising free everything for everyone, like free college tuition, free income, free housing, free health care, including for law-breaking illegal aliens who illegally invade America and who have neither put money into the collective taxpayer pot nor will they. America’s own material success and wealth are being used as a weapon against America.

Obviously this free stuff movement is financially and socially unsustainable, because resources have limits and it is innately unfair. But that is not the point for the Free Stuff movement. The point is to use that lure and false promise to buy enough votes from gullible kids and illegal aliens to attain communism in America through our democratic process. That is, to turn America into a communist country.

Crazy Bernie Sandals honeymooned in the old Soviet Union Russia, because he was and still is a proud authoritarian communist. But he is not alone in this view; every other Democrat candidate has said more or less the same things he has said, sometimes differing by a few shades of grey.

Leading up to the Russian Revolution of 1917, which is when Russia became an authoritarian communist country exporting its cruelty abroad, there were two movements to achieve communism in Russia. One group was the Bolsheviks, whose belief in Bolshevism required a violent overthrow and replacement of the existing government. Their competitors were the Mensheviks. They believed in the eventual slow drip-drip-drip overthrow of the Russian government, one chip at a time, one government position at a time, one vote at a time, using the democratic process to slowly implement their goals until the government was dominated by communists. And only then they would use force to implement their authoritarianism.

Know what the Mensheviks were called?

The Russian Social Democratic Party.

Sound familiar to something happening today right here in America?