Bundy Stand Off and Beyond

I’m getting political.  This is my blog so I get to write about whatever I want :P  Anyway, I’ve got to comment on the Bundy Ranch standoff, I mean it was in Nevada after all.  But that’s not all I want to say.  Look, Bundy is wrong.  We are a country of laws, even if you don’t like those laws.  He has lost in court and should pull his cattle off of Federal land and pay his grazing fees.  End of story.

However, there’s always an however, he might be right on the larger issue.  What gives the Feds the authority to push citizens around like they do?  Can they just bully people around in the name of some supposedly threatened species (and for the record, the desert tortoises are like rats in Washington D.C., they are everywhere).  I submit they can but they shouldn’t.  We have this thing called the Constitution and I’m having a hard time finding the part where the Federal Government gets to take stuff from citizens without due process and compensation.  In other words, they just can’t declare land off limits arbitrarily and force ranchers, for instance, out of business without paying them…but they do it all the time.

But beyond that, where do they get off sending a virtual army (and what else would you call agents of the BLM dressed in fatigues and body armor carrying automatic rifles?) to confront citizens over cattle and grazing fees. Continue reading

I Let My Sons Play Football

Henry (right) coaching his brother Owen.  Owen played one year and didn't like it but he tried it.  He loves basketball, however.

Henry (right) coaching his brother Owen. Owen played one year and didn’t like it but he tried it. He loves basketball, however.  It helped him become a more confident young man.

I’ve been saying the NFL has been “chickifying” football for years.  From female commentators, to commercials that cater to women, to breast cancer awareness.  Look, I’m not sexist, but football is a man’s sport, played by men for men.  I’m all for combating breast cancer but how about prostate cancer?  Tens of thousands of men will die from that disease.  How about a sport played by men and enjoyed predominately by men support that cause instead?

But now with all the concussion issues, the “bullying” scandel, Aaron Hernandez, etc., all these people are coming out saying they won’t let their sons play football.  Bob Costas and Brett Favre are the latest.  Well, I disagree and vehemently, as you might have guessed by the post. Continue reading

Vacation and Some New Stuff

I’m off on a short vacation.  Going to Jamaica for some sun, sand, rum and meat patties.  Mmm.  I’ve been working on some new stuff for the blog, namely a YouTube channel and videos instead of just words.  I’ve always provided picture heavy posts but in the future, many posts will include videos.  From artsy stuff taken on fishing trips to gear reviews of stuff I use to some how-to and educational videos.  I’ve already shot a few but I wasn’t happy with them.

Let me tell you, shooting video is tough.  I’m sure once the workflow is ironed out it gets easier but at first it’s a chore, not to mention how hard it is to talk to yourself out in the middle of nowhere without feeling like an idiot.  In fact, I had a family walk by and catch me as I was speaking to my camera.  That was unnerving.  I’m sure after a while you just stop worrying about it.  I hope so anyway.

By the way, the East Walker is probably fishable now.  The flows are still low but the evenings have been cool, below freezing in fact.  The water should be cool and have a higher level of oxygen so fishing won’t be so stressful for the fish.  I plan to find out once I get back…theoretically.  I’m having trouble finding the time lately.  I’ve got a lot of writing deadlines, self-imposed deadlines, but deadlines nevertheless.  Not to mention football and school stuff.  I’ll get out there, eventually :roll:

Obamacare: It’s On!

c5cc5-actionalert1aToday, the House of Representatives voted to fund the government at current levels and to DEFUND OBAMACARE.  The pundits are saying this will never pass the Senate.  Those same pundits said it would never pass the House last week and that Congress would vote to give Obama authority to bomb Syria the week before.  The house did it because the people spoke up and now we need to speak up even more loudly.  Obamacare is a travesty.  It is going to ruin our healthcare system.  I have yet to talk to a doctor that likes it and I know a few that have retired to avoid having to deal with it.  The only people that like this are the ones that think they’ll be getting some “free” stuff.  Good luck with that.

Now is the time to act.  Call your Senators and tell them to defund Obamacare.  Call Harry Reid at (202) 224-3542 and urge him to bring the house bill up for a vote.  Go to dontfundobamacare.com and join the other over 1.5 million patriots that understand what Obamacare will do to our republic and sign the petition.  We can do this.  The people can make the pundits look like fools…again.  Don’t hesitate, don’t put it off.  It takes a couple of minutes to call your Senators and sign the petition.  Do it even if they are dyed in the wool big government liberals, union hacks or Republicans in name only.  Don’t let them scare you with talk of a government shut down.  Worse things could happen, I promise.  Don’t forget, these clowns exempted themselves.  We the People can take back our country and rein in big government.

Get Ready: Gun Grab Part II

I’ve gone back and forth about how long to wait to post this after the tragic shootings in Washington D.C. but I think the President answered my question.  His spokesman, Jay Carney, told America, mere hours after twelve men and women lost their lives that, that Obama was going to implement more gun-related executive orders and reiterated the President’s commitment to stricter gun control.  I guess we’re ready to have this discussion.GunsFirst off, I mourn the deaths of these men and women and extend my sympathy to their families, friends and co-workers.  They should not be forgotten or their memory tainted by yet another gun debate that uses them as props.  Sadly, that probably won’t be the case.  Every indication is the shooter, Aaron Alexis, was a disturbed individual with a history of mental illness and gun related criminal behavior but he was never arrested and even managed to pass not only firearm background checks but security background checks too.  Sound familiar? Continue reading

Smokefest 2013

They view off my front porch this AM.

They view off my front porch this AM.

The beautiful summer weather goes on.  The Rim Fire burning near Yosemite continues to pour smoke into the valleys along the Sierra front.  Football games have been canceled for another week and outdoor activities of any kind are difficult at best.  I’ve heard rumors that the skies are clear near Bridgeport and Lee Vining but driving through the haze to get there is the problem.  The Jeep isn’t exactly air tight and by the time I could reach clear air, I’d likely be ruined.

So, while I wait for the skies to clear to begin enjoying the fall fishing in earnest, I’m working on some projects at home.  That is when I’m not suffering from near constant headaches, sinus pressure and a burning throat.  I know the fire crews are doing their best but I wish they could work faster.  As long as they’re safe, that is.  Reporting from Smokefest 2013.

Stand Your Ground

While the Zimmerman murder trial had very little to do with the stand your ground law in Florida, it was about simple self-defense, those laws are now under much scrutiny.  Why is that?  What is so offensive about stand your ground laws?  Well, those opposed would have you believe that these are “shoot first” laws, that allowing a person to stand their ground instead of retreating if possible is reckless.

In some cases it probably is.  No law gives a person the right to kill another under any circumstances.  You must have no other choice, you must be threatened.  Without stand your ground laws and doctrine, you must retreat from danger if at all possible.  Only when literally cornered can you use force to defend yourself.  Free men do not have a duty to retreat from danger.  Common sense should always be exercised when using force but sometimes it is necessary to protect one’s property with force and since the right to own property is so important to liberty, it is justified.  Sometimes the use of force can prevent further loss of life.  Sometimes, it is principal.

No, the real reason people oppose stand your ground laws is more sinister.  When Joe Biden tells you to just stand on your porch with a shotgun and shoot into the air, when a Colorado lawmaker tells a constituent he should just wait for police to arrive and when gun grabbers tell you you don’t have a right to own a gun, what they are really saying is Continue reading

What Was I Thinking?

Should have stayed home and drank!

Should have stayed home and drank!

I’d been trying to get out on the water, specifically the East Walker before the tough summer flows hit, but with my anniversary, my son’s birthday and all the end of the school year stuff, I was having trouble finding a day.  So I targeted Friday.  Yes, the Friday before the Memorial Day weekend.  What was I thinking?

Look, I don’t have a real job.  Holidays are meaningless to me for the most part.  It just didn’t occur to me half the people on the planet would be leaving early for the long weekend.  I pulled up to the Elbow and saw half a dozen RVs spread around, two guys on dirt bikes ripping up one of the trails, but my honey hole was open.  However, as I approached, six middle aged RVer’s walked around the bend in swimming suits carrying blow up inner tubes and rafts.

I can take a hint!  I just gave up on fishing and did a little exploring.  No pictures, nothing spectacular.  I don’t like crowds.  I know the East Walker isn’t mine or exclusive to fishermen, but it seems harder and harder to get away from the crowds.  Places I visited five years ago and had to myself, now are teaming with people.  I guess the economy means camping out is preferred to expensive tourist destinations and fancy hotels, not to mention the whole outdoors experience is being promoted heavily.

Unfortunately, a lot of the folks that go, just don’t understand part of the attraction is the peace and quiet, the solitude.  They bring the city and it’s noise and crowding with them.  They don’t respect personal space and have no idea how loud and obnoxious they can be.  I wish it were just rich lawyers in the Simms waders with their $800 Sage rods like the locals in Montana complain about.  I could deal with that.  Weekdays and waters that don’t show up in magazines.  That’s my mantra.

P.S. Props to our men and women serving in the armed forces and to those that have sacrificed all in the name of liberty.

P.S.S. Yes, I am a curmudgeon.  Thanks for asking.

Tax Reform Now!

As Rahm Emanuel likes to say, never let a a good crisis go to waste.  Unless you live under a rock or work in upper management at the IRS – that’s a joke – you have no doubt heard that the Internal Revenue Service has been targeting conservative groups and individuals for extra scrutiny when filing for tax-exempt status.  Many of these groups have never been granted status seriously impeding their ability to exercise their First Amendment rights on a level playing field with other groups expressing other view points.  Ah, isn’t big government grand?

I’m not going to hash out the whys and wherefores or try to explain how this activity threatens everyone’s liberty and freedoms.  I mean if you can’t figure that out, you’re either stupid or you voted for Obama (sorry, couldn’t resist).  But this situation goes to show what big government and punitive tax law can do.  It can be used to hurt, to ruin or to silence individuals.  The tax code is full of loopholes that benefit all manner of different constituencies and is so complex it is difficult not to file incorrectly.  The tax code is used to coerce individuals and businesses into acting certain ways, engaging in certain activities or avoiding others.  It’s a freaking mess and not the kind of tax system that should be used in a free and open society.

So, you are no doubt about to ask, what can we do that is more fair, more equitable and makes this kind of scandal less likely to occur?  Well here’s a few ideas to ponder: Continue reading

Say No to Universal Background Checks

I don’t support universal background checks.  You shouldn’t either.  There have been ads played locally about the issue.  A supposed hunter and gun owner tells how how much he cherishes his 2nd Amendment rights.  How he is handing down those traditions to his son.  Then he says he wants universal background checks and tells everyone to urge my Senator, Dean Heller, to support them too.  If this wasn’t brought to us by the mayor’s group headed by New York’s Mayor Bloomberg, the same mayor that wanted to control his constituent’s soda intake through backdoor regulatory means, I might have listened.  Instead, I sent a message to Senator Heller telling him I don’t support expanded background checks.

You see, universal background checks aren’t going to work.  The present background checks don’t work.  Look, if background checks worked, I’d support them and thousands of people would have been saved because criminals wouldn’t have guns.  But they are nothing more than a feel good measure meant to make politicians look as if they are actually doing something and make voters feel safe.  Look, here’s why:

  1. Criminals don’t submit to background checks.  I’m sure a few idiots do and get caught, and usually they aren’t even prosecuted for breaking the law.  Criminals, and data backs this up, Google it, get their guns from friends and family, on the black market or they steal them.
  2. And speaking of enforcement Continue reading
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