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It’s Farm Show 2023! You should be here

Man does not live on bread alone. Occasionally there must be a beverage.” Similarly, a blog wholly devoted to politics these days is just going to be no fun at all, to write or to read. Far too much drama afoot. So here is the beverage… Pennsylvania Farm Show 2023.

Pennsylvania’s Farm Show at the enormous humungous gigantic Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg has been a mainstay since the 1800s. Pennsylvania is still a rural and agricultural state, and so 4H is still active, and so there tons of really cute little kids leading equally young and cute goats, sheep, miniature horses, heifers, rabbits, ducks, chickens, roosters, pigs, and so on either to or from some showing. If you catch the kids and their critters coming from a competitive showing, you will often see the award ribbons prominently displayed on the animals’ heads, like on ears or mane. The little kids walk along with their pets like total bosses, many of them wearing grown up cowboy boots and western style clothing.

If there is a crisis among American youth because they are spoiled, lazy, lacking direction etc, it is not to be found among the 4H kids. Many of them have been getting up at 4:30AM daily since they were seven or eight years old, to feed and water their prize critter, before going to school. By the time 4H kids reach their teens, they have developed the maturity of a responsible parent with a professional job. And it is evident in their faces and the confident way they carry themselves.

Want your kid to be wholesome and normal some day? Make them work on a farm.

While the show opens Saturday, Sunday is probably the biggest day. Parking was a 30 minute long slow crawl into the main lot. Once inside, I neglected to take a picture of the food court, which was jam packed from end to end with long lines of people for the fresh milkshakes, especially. Other fresh and wholesome foods are also available, and it is clear that showgoers really enjoy the large selection of good tasting home style food. And they are willing to stand in line a bloody long time for it.

As one might imagine, the Farm Show has a lot of farming related stuff, including Pennsylvania made maple syrup and hickory syrup, Herlocher’s mustard, Utz’s pretzels, a zillion types of canned and smoked meats and cheeses, pickles, vegetables, and of course the grand butter sculpture. And of course farm animals and the wagons they pull.

Tractors old and new, recreational vehicles, 1800s style wagons, clothing, knives, hats, boots, belts…. I myself bought two new bridle leather belts. One says “Country Boy” and the other says “John Deere” and has a picture of a tractor. How embarrassing to admit that the belt proprietor asked me to fit the belts around my waist, so he could measure how much to cut off the end, and in my case, nothing needed to be cut off.

We also purchased another five CutCo knives, to add to the six we already own. On the one hand, we are really happy with the quality of the CutCo knives we already have, and as a custom knife fiend myself, I admire high quality knives. CutCo knives are definitely very high quality. On the other hand, I feel kind of silly buying something from a sales rep at a show. It just seems like super high retail idiot. But it’s the way to buy these particular products.

We also purchased alpaca wool dryer balls and knitting wool yarn for a favorite family member who enjoys knitting, or crocheting, or whatever the hell annoying thing it is people do with wool yarn. The farmer lady selling the wool gets it from brushing her pet alpacas, adding up the wool, washing it, carding it, and using a spinning wheel to turn the raw wool into yarn. She also dyes the wool before spinning it into yarn. Or maybe she dyes the entire alpaca before brushing the hair off of it.

Her dryer balls are about the same price as the best available in big box stores and high end special order websites. Having used her balls two times since Sunday, I can report back that they bounce hard. You may read into this whatever you wish, but I am telling you only the truth. Her clothes dryer balls really work, and I suppose it’s a brave new world we occupy that has this phenomenon.

Go visit the Pennsylvania Farm Show. If you have never been to it, you should go full bore tourist and come to Harrisburg and see it. You can spend about two days here and see about as much of farm life without actually having to wash the cow crap off your boots as you would normally want to see. In truth, if you spend any time around the many farm animals present, especially in the later days of the show, and especially especially if you hang out in the (for real) Goat Snuggling Corner, then you will inevitably step in a big pile of horse, goat, or cow crap. But then you will have gone and done something real and tangible with your life, and learned something new.

So come to Harrisburg and step in a pile of horse crap and drink a delicious fresh milkshake and watch farmers do their farm thing. You will have a hell of a lot of fun, guaranteed. Best and most wholesome fun your family will have in a very long time.

Even if America’s useless politicians are not patriotic, most American citizens still are, and flags sell well

Yes, it is true, you can snuggle the cutest baby goats at the Steinmetz Family Farm nook at the Farm Show. And a photographer could make a living just taking pictures of happy little goats nestled in the cradling arms of really happy kids. It is quite wonderful

What farm show anywhere would be caught dead without some antique John Deere tractors? I myself drive a “Green Machine.” The old ones are works of art.

Beth Lutz of Painted Spring Farm in York County, PA, explains her weaving loom to the Princess of Patience at the 2023 PA Farm Show

 

 

Dyed alpaca wool and clothes dryer wool balls from Painted Spring Farm in York County, PA

Pennsylvania has capitalized on traditional “Dutch” quilt styles that you can still find for sale along many rural roads in the summer. These styles are also prominently displayed on barns across Pennsylvania.

Jen Boltz runs a wagon for some friends in a competition. There is a whole subeconomy of these traditional 1800s wagons and the huge gentle draft horses that pull them.

Everything covid-climate-elections is settled, OK?

The dominant theme emerging from just about everything associated with one political party and its leftist allies is that everything they demand and want and pass and promote requires me and you to give up our rights, our freedoms, our choices, our privacy, our money. I cannot think of one Democrat Party legislative bill that isn’t prying into my private life and into my bank account, and taking things away from me. All with massive government coercive force and harsh penalties for even trying to resist or even question their government enforcers.

The other theme that has emerged from the blatantly stolen elections in 2020 and in Pennsylvania and Arizona in 2022 is the same theme we have been told by the Left about Covid and human caused “climate change” – the “science” is settled, the votes are settled, and the questions about any of these are settled. Now sit the hell down and do what we tell you.

Questioning elections, lockdowns, climate change is not permitted. That is the official message government employees tell us and that the mainstream establishment legacy media repeat unquestioningly like parrots.

Even while more and more evidence is being presented through non-traditional channels about how the American government response to Covid, with the destructive lockdowns, silly useless masks, and the murderous injections, was not guided by science of any sort. Rather, government’s response to Covid was to use it to implement a destructive political agenda of control, control, control. No science at all. But Dr. Mengele Fauci kept telling us to trust the science and that his ever changing decisions were the science. The unassailable technocratic science that we should all bow down to, and that we now see was absolute rubbish.

Climate change has been stuck in the same static claim of “the science is settled” since the 1980s, when there was literally zero science about climate. That was just a political agenda claim, not a scientific one. And since the 1980s a pile of work has been done on climate, but most of it has been political narrative, and bullying, and censorship, not real scientific work and progress. What science has been done has been mostly statistical, and based on blatantly manipulated data sets from the poorest possible data sources. E.g. the laughable “sea ice is melting” data even as ships cannot get through the intense sea ice that has in fact not melted, and the easily disprovable “increasingly catastrophic storms” lie. In other words, climate change is still not science two and three decades later, after the original “the science is settled” hoax.

But we are supposed to accept it and shut up.

Now we see elections across America fraught with incredible and blatant fraud. Ballots dumped into counting centers that don’t pass the basic ballot verifications, like matching signature checks, and the ballots all have blatantly mismatched signatures. Hundreds of thousands of these fraudulent ballots in Arizona and Pennsylvania. Mail in ballots are a huge path to election fraud and it is how so many elections are being claimed by….who else but Democrat Party candidates. And don’t you dare challenge them! The science of vote counting is settled and you had better just shut up!

Now we learn from the Twitter Files expose that the federal government, namely the FBI and the DHS, illegally mis-spent millions of our own tax dollars to pay Twitter staff to censor Americans who were telling the truth about Covid, about climate change, and about fraudulent elections. Our own American government has been spending boatloads of our own taxpayer money to promote outright lies and to prevent the truth from even being told. Yes this horrible behavior is illegal and evil and corrupt and unimaginable in a democratic nation. But because it benefited just one political party and its ideological allies, the mainstream media is almost silent about it.

Have you heard about these Twitter Files? You know, the internal documents and communications that reveal Twitter to be a corrupt FBI front organization designed to tell misinformation and lies to the American people, and to manipulate our votes and the information our votes are based on? Truly evil shit.

And it’s not just Twitter, but YouTube, Google, and Facebook, and Instagram.

No one has a crystal ball and no one can predict how human events will unfold and play out. But a lot of Americans are now beginning to have their eyes opened up. The consequences of all the government staffers engaged in criminal behavior and criminal acts have yet to be revealed, but there must be consequences for what we already now know. If no FBI staff are fired and put in jail over this, if no DHS staff are fired and jailed over this, then America as a free country run by The People – you and me –  is dead. It is over. Voting is a meaningless charade.

Because the federal employees engaged in these criminal acts are not being held accountable, and then the rule of law is over and the government is despotic. The opposite of how and why America was founded.

And then We, The People have only our own Declaration of Independence remaining to guide our next actions:

We hold these truths to be self evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the consent of the Governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles, organizing its Powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness…

…and there is more about a long train of government abuses of The People, government usurpations of the People’s powers, government employee despotism against citizens like the J6ers being held in the Washington DC gulag, etc.

In other words, if there is no accountability, then The People of America can and should, even must rise up and take back their own government from usurpers and thieves. No matter what this takes, by any means necessary, whatever the cost.

Google and YouTube are trying their darnedest to censor and suppress this newspaper. But under Elon Musk’s ownership Twitter is allowing it to be debated, and read. Pfizer and the Democrat Party knowingly killed a lot of innocent, vulnerable people for financial gain…

 

 

 

 

Advice from a deer

As sure as the sun rises, there is sure to be complaining among hunters about the state, condition, blood pressure, and dental hygiene of Pennsylvania’s deer herd. In fact, you can’t escape the topic if you spend any time, like even a minute or two, in the company of devoted hunters. No matter who I am standing around, next to, or in line with, the complaints begin to flow about the Pennsylvania Game Commission and its deer management.

Despite being highly skeptical about government in general, and therefore despite keeping an open mind to complaints about government failings, I find myself repeatedly unpersuaded by these deer management complaints. While not quite ranking up there with UFO sightings or insistence that PGC has helicopter-imported mountain lions and coyotes to eat the deer, the fretting and nail biting and angry denunciations always seem to lack key aspects of any serious argument.

For example, for twenty years I have heard that Sproul State Forest harbors no deer. Then last year I easily killed a deer standing right at the edge of Sproul State Forest, and saw many others. This November, I hunted elk in Sproul State Forest and State Game Lands 100 in northern Centre County, and found myself endlessly surrounded by deer, from dawn until way past bed time while driving. Conventional views that these deer do not exist are easily reinforced around bar stools, but I have found them easily and quickly disproven in personal contact with the deer habitat itself.

One of the real challenges to Pennsylvania deer hunters is the change in deer herd size and behavior since 2001, as well as the maturing of our forests since the 1970s, when a lot of today’s older hunters were really getting into the lifestyle. A hunting culture based on sitting in one place and watching unsustainably sized deer herds migrate by resulted, and now that most rural deer herds have been lowered, just sitting and waiting is not enough. Especially when the mature forests we now experience are devoid of any acorns for the second year in a row.

In 2021 a late frost killed the oak flowers in northern PA, resulting in no acorns up north and spotty acorn crops in the south. In 2022, rampant gypsy moth infestations across the entire state denuded entire oak forests of every leaf and flower, which has again resulted in zero acorn production across a great deal of Pennsylvania’s forests. If you are inclined to blame people for things that are mostly out of people’s control, then I suppose we can point out that PA DCNR seemed to hold back on gypsy moth spraying in 2021 and 2022. Had DCNR sprayed more, then the state-wide acorn crop failure we now behold probably would not have been as bad.

The fact is that a great many of us started sitting or walking in beautiful mature forests this past Saturday or Sunday as PA’s deer rifle season opened up, and found ourselves marveling at the incredible silence greeting us. Hardly any bird activity. Maybe one squirrel seen all day, and certainly no bears and few if any deer. This is the result of there being nothing for anyone to eat in the woods.

So, unless your woods escaped gypsy moth damage and has acorns, get the heck out of the woods and go find brushy and grassy areas where deer can browse. Utility rights-of-way and clearcuts are the best places to find deer this season, and in fact the only person I know of who killed a deer anywhere near me yesterday (Sunday) was an older guy in a deer drive through a beautifully overgrown overhead powerline right of way. His hunting party also reported seeing eight does with the now deceased buck, none of which they shot.

Yesterday, while I was sitting miserably sick in my covered stand and waiting out the miserable cold rain and wind, a deer in a top hat and silk gloves happened by and gave me the following advice:

In general, access your hunting area well before sunrise and start every deer hunt with a quiet Sit from 6:30-9am, overlooking some promising travel corridor, funnel, or feeding area. Then slowly and quietly Still Hunt into the wind or quartering into the wind until lunch time. Then Sit down and eat lunch quietly, while overlooking some promising location through which wildlife regularly pass or eat. At 1pm pack up the lunch stuff and Still Hunt again slowly until 3:30pm, and then find a good spot with good views and shooting lanes and Sit quietly until 15 minutes before shooting light ends. Then slowly and quietly walk out, and maybe kill something on your way back to your vehicle or camp, only unloading your firearm when shooting hours have officially ended.

I myself am about to suit up for a long and slow stalk through some brushy utility rights of way. Yes, they are now wet, and always steep, and the going is tough. But that is where the deer are, because that is where they can eat and survive, and I am hunting deer so that I might actually kill one.

The deer and I must meet in person in order for this transaction to happen.

As much as a covered hunting blind may be a necessity when the hunter is sick or the rain is pouring down, the fact is this not really hunting. Slowly and quietly walking into the wind through good deer habitat with your firearm at the ready is real hunting. Do it.

PA elk & bear seasons now behind us

You can spend all year excitedly anticipating a few days here or there, and before you know it, those days arrive, they happen intensely, and then they are over like a dream.

This dream we speak of here are the various big game seasons that are such a big part of so many peoples’ lives, entire families and communities, entire businesses (I think hunting is an annual $1.6 BILLION business sector here in Pennsylvania). Thus far we have had an elk season and now the main bear season pass along. Here are some of my thoughts on these two wonderful experiences.

First, the elk hunt.

I was fortunate enough to draw a coveted PA elk tag, after applying for many years and building up a lot of preference points. The lottery drawing was announced in late August, and I immediately began planning. The general elk season is just six days long, and unless you are going to engage a guide for a few thousand dollars, you have a lot of work to do before setting foot afield with a gun. If you draw a bull tag, paying a guide is worth it.

After a tremendous amount of analysis and planning, and some September scouting, I was fortunate to hunt for elk with some good friends and a .62-caliber percussion rifle over my shoulder in Elk Zone 13. We camped out on a log landing in Sproul State Forest, with elk all around us, and each buddy scouted hard each day, looking for elk that the sole hunter (me) could get after.

Elk Zone 13 is huge, and contains a lot of vast public land. And so the elk harvest data shows that it is a bit of a Death Valley in terms of hunters actually killing an elk within it. While a lot of Pennsylvania elk hunting takes place briefly where a lot of the local elk have pet names and are used to being around people, there are a few elk zones where the opposite is the case. Zone 13 is one of those opposite cases. It is a tough place to hunt under any conditions, and under the rainy, warm, and very windy conditions we had, it was just about impossible. In the end, just one of three bull tags there was filled, and as of the fifth day of the six day season, just one of the six cow elk tags had been filled. I was not one of those people lucky enough to fill my elk tag.

And it was not a harvest failure because we didn’t hunt smart. We hunted so smart that we were bumping into elk guides and their clients at every turn. We had done our homework ahead of time, and we knew where the elk were likely to be, which is where you will find an elk guide, too.

One of the things I did as part of the analysis and planning phase was was plot all of the past elk harvest data on the large Elk Zone 13 map the PA Game Commission sent me. Once your eyes see exactly where the elk are killed every year, almost always in large clusters, over the past seven years that Elk Zone 13 has been around, you recognize where to concentrate your field scouting efforts. And then our subsequent field scouting efforts confirmed the presence of elk, including the day before the elk hunt started.

Like I said above, the weather conditions were awful for any type of big game hunting, and especially with a primitive weapon such as I carried. My effective range was 110 yards, and 75 yards was a lot more preferable. But range doesn’t matter if you can’t get an elk to stand broadside for a few seconds. I did mix it up directly with an elk herd that was hiding in a forest, and I did call one close back to me, and I did get a couple good setups on moving elk. But the seesawing winds gave away my presence each time, and the elk stormed off each time. Like I said, I had a wonderful time with good friends in a beautiful place with a fantastic gun over my shoulder. Elk or no elk in the hunting bag, I had a great time hunting elk in Pennsylvania (an especial Thank You to the many private landowners who generously granted me access to their properties to hunt elk).

Now, bear season.

Bear season ended yesterday, and the last of the bear hunters grudgingly left the cabin today. As usual, we had a large crowd gathered here, with everyone happy to catch up with chums from years past, sharing good food and good drink and good cheer. One thing all hunters eventually begin to notice is that with age comes a mellowing of the spirit. The chase is not as important as simply being present in God’s creation, often communing with Him in the largest house of prayer anywhere, the mountain forest cathedral.

And so fewer and fewer guys are coming here to hunt, and more and more guys are here to relax. And that is OK.

We who both communed with God in the mountain forest cathedral, and who also hunted, saw no bears and only a few deer. Mostly because there are no acorns in the woods, and all wildlife must go where the food is. If there is no food here, there are no bears here. Gypsy moths devastated Pennsylvania’s oak forests this past summer, and so there were no oak flowers to turn into oak acorns to fatten up buck and bear, squirrel and turkey. The woods was totally quiet this week, and it made me wonder what a squirrel migration looks like. Do hordes of mountain squirrels move en masse into suburban yards in lean years like this one? And where the heck do all the bears hibernate?

Roughly 1,450 bears were killed in PA’s early archery and muzzleloader seasons, and so far just under a thousand bears total are reported for this week’s bear rifle hunt. Usually this week’s four-day hunt results in an enormous bear kill. We are now looking at an epically low bear harvest in a state with a huge and burgeoning bear population that needs managing (Just a few days ago New Jersey issued an emergency bear hunt approval, because The People’s Republic of New Jersey is being overrun with bears, which unfortunately cannot be trained to eat liberals but whom the liberals recognize as a natural predator and are seeking to reduce out of self defense).

Another thought a lot of people are sharing today is that the early bear seasons, archery and muzzleloader, are very effective, so that come the late November bear season, there are a lot fewer bears to be had. Bears that are facing both extreme hunger AND extreme hunting pressure will den up early to get out of the storm. It seems a lot of the bears that survived the early seasons arrived in a bleak foodless November and said an early good night until March, 2023.

Next up is deer season, another dream time. And our deer patterns are also all off kilter here, so it is going to be a very interesting deer hunt in the mountains. Again, it’s no acorns, no deer. Except for that one gigantic buck I saw a couple times….stay tuned for that report. Let’s hope it makes up for the no elk and no bear reports we already filed away for 2022…

An 1884 double rifle made for tigers in India would be great bear medicine. If only a bear would appear.

This remote old mine is one of dozens that dot our mountains. It is a fine place to hunt, take a nap, or write in a notebook. A couple times I have done all three in one visit.

Camped with friends on an old log landing in the Sproul State Forest is a wonderful way to spend life’s limited time, elk or no elk in the bag.

A great way to spend a day hunting elk, with a beautiful .62 caliber rifle (not a smoothbore) made by Mark Wheland here in PA. With its 335-grain round ball, it is easily capable of cleanly taking a hearty elk.

Democrat Ballots vs Republican Votes

Just like in the 2020 election, last week’s Election Day turned into Election Week as huge quantities of mail-in election ballots were unceasingly unleashed into elections in Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, and Nevada.

Because the sacred chain of custody of all the mail-in ballots in every venue had been broken many times, it is impossible to correlate the ballots with individual voters. This chain of custody problem does not happen by accident, it happens on purpose, because people are obviously using this screwed up process to give their favored candidates as many ballots as possible. That is, the mail-in ballot process is open and notorious election cheating and vote fraud. Again, it is impossible to correlate the ballot in a situation like this with a living, breathing voter.

In every single one of these venues, the deliberately broken mail-in ballot dump favors candidates from just one political party.

Meanwhile, the Republican Party is seemingly oblivious to this cheating, and is out chasing actual individual votes. Whether this is innocent naivete or willful, blissful, incompetent ignorance is anyone’s guess, but the bottom line is that yet again, the dinosaur GOP is fighting the last battle from maybe a century ago. The modern electioneering by the Democrat Party is breathtakingly dishonest, but they will keep doing it if no one stops them. And the Republican Party is not stopping them. Not even trying.

This is because the Republican Party in most places is run by and staffed by people who just don’t care about winning. Rather, they are focused on following a process, regardless of its success. This is because they are rewarded with functionary jobs and insider prestige regardless of their success. They are never ever held accountable for failing. And in many cases, it almost seems like the GOP would rather see conservative Republicans fail than get elected.

Here in Pennsylvania, the PAGOP had long ago abandoned gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano and US senate candidate Dr. Oz. Probably because neither of these grass roots favored candidates were beholden to PAGOP party bosses. GOPe critter Karl Rove spent millions of dollars here in PA buoying up Democrat Josh Shapiro at the expense of Shapiro’s Republican opponent, Mastriano. Mastriano’s Dr. Oz’s own campaign co-chair, RINO Jeff Bartos, attended a Shapiro fundraiser. With “Republican” friends like these, who needs enemies?

Here in PA an enormous barrage of election ballots were dumped early, and despite a lot of people having misgivings about their veracity, Dr. Oz turned tail and ran right back to New Jersey, while Mastriano tried to fight to get ahold of said ballots, so he could challenge the election outcome. But with no money to run his ballot check process, Mastriano was eventually forced to concede, bitterly.

Ballot (not vote) dumps are holding up election results in Arizona, as well as deliberate slow-walking of election counts in Democrat-run Maricopa County. The cheating for Democrat candidates in Arizona is literally over the top, and right in everyone’s face. But, as we said, the GOP is nowhere to be seen, because none of the America-First Republican candidates there are the chosen of the GOPe. The GOP prefers the conservatives lose to Democrats, which we saw in US House and US Senate races across the country.

If you had asked me 30 months ago what I would expect from all this in-your-face election cheating, I would have predicted a storming of the arch, an armed public posse demanding new elections. But as we see now, this has not happened. Americans seem almost OK with election cheating, even if it does not favor their preferred candidates. There is a malaise or a “what me worry?” among voters that shocks me, and augurs very badly for America’s future.

After all, America is a representative government of, by, and for The People, which requires clean elections and only legitimate votes. If The People don’t give a crap, but instead are glued to their smart phone screens, TVs, and online video games, then America is lost. It is just a matter of less time than more that America will be taken over by some stronger, hungrier power. And of all the hungry powers out there that can and probably will take over America, not one believes in either ballots or votes.

They believe in bullets and bullying. The People then will get no choices, just orders.

We interrupt our regular political bickering to bring you Deer Season

People who don’t hunt may think they have some serious political differences. Well, they have not yet gotten involved in the Pennsylvania deer hunting wars, where fifteen years ago PA Game Commission board members and senior staff believed they had to wear bullet proof vests to public policy gatherings, such was the intensity of hate and vitriol…over deer.

With deer archery season ending Sunday night (our first Sunday hunt of the year) and deer rifle season just two weeks away, what better time to interrupt all the political acrimony from Tuesday’s mid-term election and introduce people to some real genuine debate. Yep. About deer.

Last week PA Governor Tom Wolf signed into law a change to the annual antlerless deer (doe) tag purchase system that only took twenty five years of bipartisan effort to achieve. All too well are Pennsylvania hunters familiar with the gigantic pink envelopes that screamed out to anti hunting Postal Service employees “Throw me away, throw me away!”

The gigantic pink envelope doe tag application system had been in place since the 1970s, and the system that was implemented in the 1970s was only a slight modification of the doe tag allocation process from the 1940s. That is how freaking backwards one major aspect of PA’s deer management program has been…hunters living in 2022, but operating in 1945.

And yeah, aspects of 1945 were great improvements over the sinking cultural ship nonsense we have going on today, but the gigantic pink envelope doe tag application lottery was not one of them. In the era of the Internet and email and texting, the now discarded doe tag system relied upon an unreliable Postal Service, two licked stamps, a check, multiple folds in the gigantic pink envelope, exactly the correctly checked boxes, and hoping your application made it in on time, or No Doe Tag For You!

And for most deer hunters, having a doe tag is a really big deal, because the harvest rate on does is about forty or fifty percent, while the success rates on wily bucks is about fifteen percent. Having a doe tag meant a much higher likelihood of getting fresh and healthy venison for your family and personal enjoyment. And not having the doe tag, because of some ridiculous minor bureaucratic rule or unchecked box in the application, was a big deflation for many a hunter.

Now we are going to have an online doe tag lottery and application process. No more photos of gigantic pink envelopes stacked up in Postal Service back rooms, waiting to be sent in weeks after their best-by date.

What is the doe hunt all about? It is about managing Pennsylvania’s over-abundant deer herd so that the non-hunting public doesn’t start to think that we hunters can’t get the job done right. It is a big and important job. In Europe, if wild game populations get too big and begin causing agricultural damage and car crashes, the local hunters actually get fined for it. Here in PA we have an enormous impact from too many deer, and a gigantic whiny peanut gallery that wants even more deer. Much more than the landscape can feed or than the public can afford to pay for.

Deer population management is done by the PA Game Commission. PGC uses hunting harvest numbers, statistical models, and input from individual hunters, hunting groups, landowners, farmers, “birds ‘n bunnies” environmental groups, and timber companies. One of the loudest voices is from hunters who want to see more deer, but who don’t care about the cost that those deer impose on other people. It is a tough job, requiring PGC to balance a lot of competing interests.

I am always surprised to hear hunters complain about PGC’s deer management, because invariably these critics really don’t know the actual mechanics of how it is done. Nor do they bother to take the time to learn the mechanics. Nor do they take the time to go on a local State Game Lands tour, to understand about deer impacts on the landscape. Instead, these hunters behave like communists and demand that everyone else provide year-’round room and board to the overabundant deer that they want to experience for just a few days a year. As much as I love our hunters, I am getting more and more cranky with them in my old age. Guys, please get educated about this subject, or just leave the adults alone.

This summer my wife and I drove out to Colorado and back. We passed endless deer roadkills on I-76 on the way out, but from the Ohio border westward, we saw just two dead deer on the side of the road. One in Iowa and one in Nebraska. On our way back to Pennsylvania, we saw no roadkills anywhere until we crossed into PA on I-80. Literally within the first mile of entering PA we began counting the freshly dead deer, and we continued that counting all the way home to central PA.

This Fall I hunted elk in northern Centre County and western Clinton County, and we saw TONS of deer every single day. This northcentral PA area is supposed to have no deer since 2001, if the official lazy stumpsitter hunter assessment is to be believed. The fact is, both PGC and DCNR have done fabulous jobs of clearcutting large blocks of forest, which has resulted in perfect habitat for deer and a bunch of other important animals. A hunter simply must get up off his butt and go do the Elmer Fudd hunting thing, nose into the wind. If this is too difficult for you, then deer hunting is not your thing.

I have hit several deer on the road in the past two years, each one doing expensive damage to my vehicles. My friend Mark just totaled his expensive sports car on the PA Turnpike 110 miles west of Harrisburg, because a deer walked out in front of his 70 MPH missile. He texted that the tow truck driver said that his was the sixth deer collision the tow truck operator had to address in 30 hours. That is just one tow truck in one small area, and so we know (and see with our eyes) that the deer collision problem is enormous, and expensive, and unnecessary,

Hopefully with the elimination of the gigantic pink envelope the PGC will also change the way it issues doe tags and the number it issues. I hunt all over PA and my opinion is, you can’t really issue too many doe tags. Especially in the southeast part of the state. WMUs 5B, 5C, and 5D should have unlimited doe tags. Apply for one and get one up until the end of the season.

There are so many deer everywhere, and all of them are causing enormous damage and highway carnage. This is presently a hunting problem to be solved by hunters, and unless PA hunters want to go the way of Washington State, where hunting as a wildlife management tool is being taken off the table, they had better step up and do the job and fix the problem.

Sayonara, Gigantic Pink Envelope! We won’t miss ya! And now that that problem is fixed, let the deer wars bickering begin about doe tags all over again. One camp living in 1945, the rest living in 2025. Can’t wait…..

Mastriano is the normal guy, Shapiro not

Doug Mastriano is the most normal person you can possibly meet. In 2021 I met and briefly spoke with him, and he was direct, cheerful, serious, confident. He is a former 30-year military career guy, and most men like him are like him in mannerisms and personality. He has been tested in battle, and in the world’s largest bureaucracy (the American military). He has taken dangerous risks, made dangerous sacrifices, for the public. He is a refreshing political outsider, and his political views are normal for his demographic. While I do not agree with Mastriano on everything, I also do not need to agree with him or any other candidate on everything in order to support him.

Yes, there is a TON of negative advertising about Mastriano, and some of it is accurate, and most of it is completely false. The thing I care about is that Mastriano is normal and he stands openly on what he believes. He stands by his views because he has views, and because he is a guy with integrity, he says his views in public and is therefore open to criticism about them. Whatever his views are, Mastriano’s political policies and views are almost unimportant if he wins. I have seen it over and over again: A governor gets elected and within weeks discovers that no one on Capitol Hill in Harrisburg gives two figs about his views. He will have to work within the system in which the governor is just one cog out of three, or four cogs. Maybe it’s five cogs, if we count the state bureaucracy…

Now, let’s consider Josh Shapiro, the candidate running for governor against Mastriano. Shapiro is the definitive political hack, a person with very few real honest to goodness views of his own and very little integrity. Very little real life experience. Certainly no risks or sacrifices for the betterment of society. He has been hiding inside air conditioned offices his entire career. Shapiro is hoping to get elected to the governorship by virtue of committing little to public knowledge, and also criticizing his opponent intensely.

(Incidentally, the phrase political hack comes from the hack horses used in mining and public transportation from about 1750 to 1920. A hack horse is trained to mindlessly follow the familiar horse in front of it, carrying or towing its burden without independent thought or motivation. The same is said of political hacks, who are led by the nose by political bosses and big political donors, and whose sole motivation is self-enrichment)

I have never met Josh Shapiro, but he did something corrupt that affected people near me, including a murder victim I knew personally, and he caused a lot of pain. Here is what I have seen of Shapiro: In 2011, Ellen Greenberg was brutally murdered in her Philadelphia apartment. From the moment after she was murdered, a lot of big political strings were pulled in plain public view to blatantly protect the one person who appears to have probably done the deed, her former fiance.

All kinds of personal favors were done for her fiance’s family, including letting his family members enter her crime scene apartment and removing and tampering with evidence. The Philly Police Department may never have been a bastion of integrity, but its senior personnel managed to hit a real low spot with the sloppy coverups of their officers’ mishandling of the bloody crime scene.

Then there was the coroner who called Ellen’s death like everyone saw it, a murder, and who was then summarily fired. Subsequent scientific and forensic analysis supporting the belief that Ellen was murdered was provided to the Philly Police Department, only to have them sit on it, hide it, ignore it.

It seemed that every official person involved in investigating Ellen Greenberg’s bloody murder was doing everything possible to protect the murderer and to shut up everyone who tried to get answers or obtain justice for this beautiful, sweet young woman.

Literally everyone involved in the obvious coverup is a member of one political party.

All of this came to a head last year and again this year when powerful new evidence about the murder was handed to AG Josh Shapiro. What did Shapiro do with the new evidence? He refused to act on it, sat on it, and then he handed it off to the very same political people who had already engaged in a years-long coverup of the murder of a beautiful, innocent Ellen. Shapiro enabled the coverup to continue, thereby protecting his political buddies and obstructing justice from being done.

AG Josh Shapiro is loyal to his political donors, I will say that much. He is also loyal to his political party, which as he is a political hack is understandable. But Josh Shapiro is not loyal to the rule of law, or to the Pennsylvania citizenry, or to solving crimes when they involve high profile members of his political party. And that makes Josh Shapiro a corrupt person, and really a lawless person. Not a normal person.

Who the hell works hard to cover up a murder and to protect “important people” in a political party who were involved in the murder? A dirtball is who does this stuff, and Shapiro is at the very least a dirtball. Shapiro’s entire career has been spent in politics, and politics is all he knows. He is a political animal, for whom there are no absolute truths or morals, just opportunities to move ahead and get more power, at any cost. Including protecting a politically connected murderer.

Yuck. Yuck yuck yuck yuck yuck.

I know Doug Mastriano has been portrayed as some sort of “right wing” loon, and of course that is BS. The same crap was done to Judge Roy Moore several years ago in an Alabama senate race, and now that Moore is stacking up court wins the truth is finally coming out about him. Roy Moore is innocent of the ridiculous accusations the media and its one political party ally made against him, and Doug Mastriano is likewise innocent of the ridiculous accusations being made against him. Yes, he believes that life begins in the mother’s womb, and so he believes the body of the living child deserves protection. Reasonable people can argue and disagree about this and other issues, but there is no argument about this:

Doug Mastriano has integrity and honesty, and Josh Shapiro has none, zero, nada.

Doug Mastriano deserves our votes for the simple reason that he is a good guy fighting the good fight against a corrupt bipartisan political system that benefits when bad people like Josh Shapiro are in power.

Vote for normal guy, political outsider Doug Mastriano, you will not regret it. If you vote for Josh Shapiro, we will all regret it.

Doug Mastriano praying at the Western Wall. Doug is more pro-Israel, pro-Jewish, pro-Judaism than Josh Shapiro could ever be.

Voting for Fetterman is voting for child molesters & violent criminals

While it is a cold, sad, but irrefutable fact that voting for senate candidate John Fetterman here in Pennsylvania is a vote for child molesters and violent criminals, and failed schools, it is also a sad fact that voting for just about any if not every Democrat Party candidate these days means the same thing.

So extreme has the Democrat Party become that I cannot think of one single Democrat Party candidate running for office anywhere who has disavowed or will disavow the teachers’ unions violent blitzkrieg attack against American children, against kids’ innocence, against American families, against American parents and their parental rights, and for child molesters and pedophiles.

When we consider that the Democrat Party has universally across America produced candidates like John Fetterman who are also totally pro-violent criminals (Fetterman says that violent criminals are actually victims) and anti-police (instead of recognizing there are a lot of great police who keep us safe and only a handful of bad cops), you have to wonder why the hell would any normal American vote for a single Democrat anywhere?

I ask this question as a former Democrat Party member who was active in many Pennsylvania Democrat Party campaigns to the point of serving as the 1988 Al Gore for President campaign’s central Pennsylvania director. But recall that in 1988 Al Gore was endorsed by the National Rifle Association and various pro-life groups. It is not that I left the Democrat Party but that Al Gore and the Democrat Party left me with their extreme positions. They are now so extreme and destructive that only the incurious and the happily unthinking vote for them.

Do not vote for John Fetterman. If you vote for him, you are also voting for child molesters and violent criminals, both of whom Fetterman believes should be roaming your neighborhood at will, without repercussion. Normal people do not believe these things or vote for these things.

Election Day referendum on Joe Biden disaster

It is last minute now, November 8th Election Day approaches. This election is a referendum on the failed policies of radical extremist Joe Biden (unnecessarily high gas prices, so-called “transgender” children raping little children in school bathrooms without any repercussions, school teachers and administrators at war with school children and their parents, a DOJ and FBI spying on and violently arresting and illegally jailing Joe Biden’s political opponents, record high inflation etc the list of deliberate malfeasance and corrupt abuse of government resources to benefit one political party is a long one).

Sadly, voting for every single Democrat Party candidate is also voting for Joe Biden’s catastrophic policies.

Either the American People save America from the purposeful destruction of America by the corrupt Biden Admin, or whatever shreds of freedom and liberty remaining to us each will be ripped from our hands by government force. So it is worth donating ten bucks to each of your favorite candidates.

Here in Pennsylvania it is Doug Mastriano and Dr. Oz. In New York it is Lee Zeldin for governor and Lauren Boebert for congress. Elsewhere, elections matter, too: Arizona, where several important elections are under way (Kari Lake for governor is running against America-hating Katie Hobbs and the entire mainstream media complex), Georgia, where football great Herschel Walker is also facing not just his openly Marxist opponent Warlock, but also the entire mainstream Big Media and Big Tech.

The list of worthy candidates who need your help goes on, but surely, each of us can afford to donate just ten bucks to one of them. If you can afford a few such donations to different candidates, right now is the time to make them. Because money is needed for last minute advertising. Something has to offset the unfair and patently illegal off-the-books donations advantage the Democrat Big Media give to every Democrat Party candidate in America.

Recent gun “buy backs” hugest waste of money and time

Leave it to people who are so consumed with hate that they can’t think straight to make a solid public policy, and so they expend public time and funds on really stupid things.

We are talking here about the hate that so many elected officials (99.5% of whom are registered Democrat Party) have for firearms. Firearms that otherwise secure our police forces, secure our armed forces, secure food for the table, and secure our private homes and personal bodies from violence. Firearms by themselves never did anything to anybody, but if you are an ineffective elected fool, and you are looking to make some kind of statement about how effective you are to people who are easily impressed, you do a “gun buy back.”

Such foolishness recently happened here in Northampton County, Pennsylvania and in Utica, New York.

Never mind that there is no “back” in the gun buy-back, because the guns being purchased never belonged to the official buyer. But hey, fools are gonna fool, especially with foolish sounding policy names, and so we get these mis-named public gun purchases in mostly Democrat-run towns and counties. *I grew up in a rural area where the Democrat Party was heavily represented. Today, not one person out there is a registered Democrat, because this political party has gone off the rails.

Public funds are expended to buy guns, with great fanfare and yet very little or no gain in public safety. Usually the public message goes something like this: “If our purchase of guns here today stops just one mistaken shooting, just one crime, just one accident, why then this is all worth it.”

Which is of course more foolish nonsense. The same communities are often wracked with violence and epidemic official failure, causing hundreds of local citizens to die unnecessarily and prematurely every year. But the “just one life” thing always sounds so serious.

Never does anyone ask What if these guns were used instead to defend our borders by state militia in Arizona, or New Mexico, or California, or Texas? Think about how many lives THAT would save, given how many drug and drug violence deaths are being walked across America’s open southern border right now. These guns in the hands of private citizens defending the American border could probably save hundreds of thousands of lives!

Or, what if the local police put on a gun safety program and taught these same private gun owners with little firearms experience how to safely shoot and store their guns? They would probably make their homes so much more safe and crime-resistant!

When all of the potentially saved lives are compared to the one or two potentially, theoretically, possibly saved by the “gun buy-back,” then we see these gun buy-backs a) don’t save lives and b) are a waste of public money.

What really strikes the eye in these publicized public firearm purchases are the purchased firearms’ low quality, the large number of antique black powder guns that have not hurt anyone since the 1860s, the valuable historic and collectible guns that should be sold to raise money for public agencies, and the simple hunting-grade weapons that leftists tell us they never ever want to take away from us. And all of the hunting ammunition! Destroying this stuff is the crime!

Why don’t the police use the ammunition for police officer training? Why destroy something so valuable as ammunition?!

And since when does the government rip off private citizens, paying them literally pennies on the dollar for high value guns, and then instead of monetizing that public money investment, the government employees then destroy the high value property?

Why doesn’t the government have an appraiser on site who can advise private citizens about the actual high value of the old gun the local government is offering them $75.00 for? Why is ripping off local people a good policy?

In Utica, New York, roughly $30,000.00 of public money was spent on purchasing… “ghost guns,” which is a political term, a loaded term, and a fake term to describe guns that are manufactured off the grid. And you know what? Those “ghost guns” that sound so dangerous and scary to the New York Attorney General… they were printed on a 3-D printer! In other words, they probably cost a few bucks each to make, and then the public mis-paid the owners hundreds of dollars each.

How does any of this make sense?

And yet all of these guns and the ammo are destined to be destroyed. So say the unquestioning mainstream media fools, who stand up in front of the cameras and parrot the talking points they are handed. Hint to the paid media people: You got a degree in “journalism,” I think because you were supposed to be…journalists? What kind of a journalist doesn’t ask questions, especially of those in positions of political and official power? (Answer is: Mainstream media people are not journalists and they do not ask questions. Instead they parrot narratives given to them by leftist government employees).

So we here are doing the job of the “journalists” who appeared in writing and on TV with the articles and reports about the gun purchases in Northampton County, PA, and Utica, NY. We are asking the simple questions, and making the simple points that these are not intelligent uses of official time or money. But then again, we do not begin at the assumption that destroying any and all firearms is the right and intelligent thing for government to do, because we are not filled up with mindless hate for inanimate objects.

[Question to the pro 2A activists in Northampton County: Why not sue this nincompoop of a DA, Terry Houck, and demand that he at least assess the market value of these guns before having them destroyed? In no other area of government do people get rewarded for destroying valuable public property]

Terry Houck is Northampton County’s idiot DA, who takes great pride in knowing zero about the collectible, valuable guns he is destroying

Flintlocks, black powder percussion guns, hunting shotguns, single shots, highly collectible and valuable Veteran bring-back guns from Europe, all said by DA Terry Houck to be dangerous. And yet…none of these are associated with crime. And therefore they are not dangerous.

These are not the kinds of guns used in crime. Simple single shot shotguns and one really valuable over-under hunting shotgun, all destined to be destroyed. For no public benefit at all. Just to make fools feel good about themselves

If you stand in front of a camera and talk like a parrot, are you a journalist? Priscilla Liguori asked no questions, committed no acts of journalism in the making of her report about Northampton County’s gun purchases. One more big mainstream media failure

The green-colored gun is a Remington 20-gauge pump shotgun used for hunting birds and rabbits. The rifle at the far right bottom with the rounded pistol grip is a high value Veteran bring-back gun from Europe that never hurt anyone. The gun at the very top of the heap is a single shot black powder FLINTLOCK muzzleloader used to hunt deer; with 1790s technology, it has zero potential use in crime. Only hatred-filled firearm prohibitionists cheer on the destruction of these useful and safe recreational and collectible guns.