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My springtime in Alaska… the good, bad and ugly

March 28, 2015

wild_4b

0uthouseDuring those first years in Alaska when I worked as an assistant hunting guide, I lived during the spring hunting season in a small log cabin. It was located 150 miles from town, in between the semi-abandoned gold mining town of Eureka and the native village of Rampart on the Yukon river. I was new to Alaska and as you will soon see I had not yet acquired any Alaskan common sense. On one of the first mornings at the cabin I had been up about a half an hour and was still waiting for the coffee to brew as an awareness crept into my consciousness. I realized I needed to take a walk to the outhouse and though not fully dressed with the spring time air a warm 36 no heavy cloths were needed. The cabin I was living in tended to be for summer use only and the outhouse was the same with no door and a wonderful view of a nearby stream and rolling spruce covered hills.

As I sat pondering the wilderness that surrounded me the sound of movement nearby broke my reverie. I turned and on my left side I could just make out, what at the time seemed gargantuan, hump of a black bear moving through the brush along the stream’s shoreline. Now you must remember this was my first year as an assistant hunting guide and I had never tracked or hunted bears before so needless to say I was more than a little anxious. Though I had been told many times never to run, if it were not for my pants being down at my ankles, I am sure I would have. I had also been told to always have your handgun with you when you walk out in the woods, but apparently this would be my first reinforcement of that lesson. Suffice it to say I sat frozen until the bear ambled off, then after a time I returned to my cabin and never forgot to have my sidearm with me again.

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However unlike most places in the ‘lower forty eight’ spring in Alaska is not a pretty picture. The highways and roads are now are lined with the remnants of dirty snow, and the millions of magnificent spruce trees barren of leaves are indeed a dreary enhancement to the highway vistas.

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Though the sometimes dangerous ice covered roads are now almost bare, the melting ice refreezes at night and leaves spots of instant excitement when encountered.

Then lastly we have awakening of the thousands of sleeping bears. Grumpy to say the least because their last meal was months ago and now out in search of (anything) edible.

…but to me the absolute best thing about springtime in Alaska
is the chance to get out in the warm air and walk around, able to now enjoy
the magnificent panorama of the still snow caped hills and mountains
near my cabin without one single mosquito!DSCF0213.JPG

Part 2…Sex, lies and lives sacrificed

March 26, 2015

Matrix-red-blue-pillIt is no wonder that tens of millions of honest, moral, hard working Americans are escaping into social media, sports and television rather than come face to face with the reality of what America is changing into. More and more I am torn between thinking we are either living in some type of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ dream or we are being coerced to live in some form of governmental ‘Matrix’. I do not think most Americans, weather they are conservative or liberal would disagree with me when I say American is rapidly loosing its moral compass and entering into an age where common sense, honesty and integrity are no longer the basis of our society.

A prime example of a nation leaning more and more to the surreal happened last week. A womans membership was revoked at the Midland, Michigan Planet Fitness Club, because she complained that a transgender woman, (aka a man), was using the womans bathroom. The woman, Ms. Yvette Cormier, said, “He totally looked like a man. He was not dressed like a woman at all.” Then when Cormier complained to the front desk and corporate headquarters they responded by telling her, “ he was allowed in there because that’s the sex he wants to be”.

Yes I am sure some of you with higher educations are saying that you used co-ed bathrooms while in collage, but does that make it right? There are now even some shopping malls where the facilities are “gender neutral”, but at some of these same malls there are signs posted that say mothers may not bring in their children with them to use the restroom if they are 6 years of age or older. Am I the only one to see that this age restriction rule is in contradiction to the ‘gender neutral’ bathroom policy? More to the point why do a minority of people having a hard time coming to grips with their sexuality require everyone else to accommodate them?

The President had Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the U.S. soldier who slipped away from his patrol base in Afghanistan in 2009, visit him at the White House. Bergdahl was released because the President traded five terrorists, held at Guantanamo, for his freedom. However an independent review by the ‘Government Accountability Office’ it found that President obama broke the law in authorizing the release of those five Taliban detainees held by the United States in exchange for Bergdahl without consulting Congress. At that White House meeting obama praised Bergdahl for his courage while being a captive of the Taliban, and Susan Rice, obama’s national security adviser said that Bergdahl served “with honor and distinction.”

So why is a man who served with honor, distinction and courage now being charged with desertion and misbehaving before the enemy, as Army officials said Wednesday, thus setting the stage for what will surely be emotionally charged court proceedings in coming months. Much more importantly I wonder if he does ever go to trial and is found guilty will he be held responsible for the deaths of the six soldiers killed while searching for him.

Citizens being punished for moral indignation
deserters and cowards being honored at the White House
and a President who is above the law
is this the new America?

Sex, lies and WordPress

March 24, 2015

P.1Like any good article or talk show I will start of with the mundane and then address the confusion about sex and lies. The only difference between this posting an a talk show is I can not stretch out this teaser with the interspersion of advertisements. Witch of course could well end up the subject of another posting of its own as to why we must be told and retold what is ‘coming up’ after the next commercial or station break. I find it totally aggravating that talk shows now spend many minutes at the beginning of each segment letting us know what they will be discussing without ever actually saying anything.

Anyway let me take care of some house cleaning first, before I am accused of doing just what I said in the previous paragraph. I must start this off with an apology for not posting with my usual embedded links. I do not know if you have noticed their absence, but I have always made sure to back up my postings with links to my sources. I personally do not like to read posts that do not back what they are writing about without a link to their source. If I am taking the time to read what someone has to say and it is not just a personal story or fiction I look for links to the source of the posting. With these links I can then balance what is being written about in the posting versus what the source is saying.

Some will say I can always search the internet for what was written but I may not find the source that is quoted in the posting, and thus I may not fully understand why the blogger is saying what they did. The same holds true with respect to posting a photograph that relates to the posting. I am a firm believer in that old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words, and since I do not write long postings the photographs have helped me in the past reinforce what I have said about the subject matter.

Now to the crux of the apology…. At present I can not do either when editing my postings on wordpress. For years I have been able to do these functions and you have reaped the benefit of my actions but it appears now that I can no longer do that. I have had many suggestions as to how to make the links happen but nothing seems to work, and as far as placing a photograph on the post no matter where I place one, (except next to the first paragraph), it ends up moving above the posting.

This problem may quite well be self inflicted because I am still running an 5 year old OS on my Mac, or it may be that my ‘old browser’ is equally to blame, (newer browsers apparently are not compatible with my old OS). Whatever the cause I am sure that those who read my postings and have an interest in whatever subject I am addressing will also search out the facts behind my posting on the internet. I will continue to bang my head against the wall searching for the reason for what is preventing me from linking my thoughts to their source.

However since I have written almost 600 words
like the talking heads on the radio
please stand by because
“I will be right back after this short break”
with the rest of the posting about…..sex and lies.

The power of the media

March 21, 2015

warwrldOn the night of October 30, 1938 thousands of people were rushing to their cars and fleeing their homes around Toms River New Jersey. They had just heard news bulletins on the radio describing an invasion that was in happening in the Toms river area. As the number of accidents grew from people flooding the highways, the panic that effected them spread into New York, Pennsylvania and later across the country. One would think because the news broadcasts were not saying that the United States was being invaded by a foreign nation but Aliens from outer space that people would ignore the terrifying descriptions being heard, but they accepted it as fact because it was on a ‘news broadcast’.

We now know it was an Orsan Wells radio theater production of ‘War of the Worlds’, definitely a fictional presentation not news as so many Americans believed. To me this is but one glaring example of the power of our news media on the thinking of the American public. If just one radio station can cause mass panic what would happen if every news broadcast was talking about the same thing?

Fast forward to the world today, and a news story I heard on the radio. It was about students walking shoulder to shoulder in protest chanting, “hands up don’t shoot”. No this was not Ferguson, Missouri it was on the campus of UAV. One would think by the very nature of the fact that most of these protesters are collage students they would be intelligent enough to have heard and understood the official, ‘local and federal’, findings that Michael Brown (never) held up his hands and he (never) attempted to surrender. However like our government in Washington the facts never seem to get in the way of a good lie, or a good news story.

The students at this Virginia collage were protesting the beating of another student from their collage who was attempting to gain access to the Trinity Irish Pub when an agent from the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control department tried to question and then arrest him. At the present time I do not have all the facts weather the law enforcement people used excessive force or he resisted being arrested, but I do know this is just another example of the media on steroids agitating society as a whole.

I am trying desperately to understand why this fight in a bar is noteworthy enough for national news coverage. This incident has an aroma of more being hidden behind what the media promotes as news. I have often wondered over the months since the Michael Brown shooting why we have not heard of any white men being shot by police or other law enforcement officers? Am I to understand that nowhere in this country a white man was beaten by police while he was being questioned or arrested?

I also can not understand how no one else is noticing this current slant in news coverage. There were many months prior to the Brown incident where the main thread in the news was the ‘poor treatment’ of illegals by the different states that passed laws simply reinforcing the federal laws on the books. Then around election time we had a spat of news stories about some states trying to block people from voting because those states wanted to require photo identification.

Let it be fully understood that I am no (Alex Jones) finding a conspiracy around every corner. That said I do believe the American media appears to be acting in lock-step when it comes to what they see as ‘important news’. It could simply mean that the higher ups in each news organization who dictate policy on what is covered are of the same mind, but like most of you when one sees coincidence one also thinks conspiracy.

So does America now have a news media
that is controlled like those in Russia and China
…and are the citizens here in America
accepting on the news as fact
without ever looking deeper for the truth?

We never seem to learn anything from history

March 16, 2015

P.1Some of you will remember a man named Neville Chambrlain he was a British Conservative politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from May 1937 to May 1940, but his actions prior to Americas entry into the second world war are now being echoed by our President and the Secretary of State, John Kerry. Of note was a meeting and treaty Chamberlain negotiated with Adolf Hitler in 1938 that strongly resembles obama’s agreement with Iran today.

In that meeting in 1938, Chamberlain took from his pocket a paper headed “Anglo–German Agreement”, which contained three paragraphs including a statement that the two nations considered the Munich Agreement “symbolic of the desire of our two people never to go to war again”. According to Chamberlain, Hitler interjected “Ja! Ja!” (“Yes! Yes!”) as the Prime Minister read it. The two men signed the paper then and there. When, later that day, German Foreign Minister remonstrated with Hitler for signing it, the Führer replied, “Oh, don’t take it so seriously. That piece of paper is of no further significance whatever.” After the signing Chamberlain returned to London in triumph.

Another world leader, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was recently in Washington and he spoke to the current negotiations underway between the United States and Iran. He said Iran’s regime poses a grave threat, not only to Israel, but also the peace of the entire world, and that Iran’s constitution directed the revolutionary guards not only to protect Iran’s borders, but also to fulfill the ideological mission of jihad, and to export the revolution throughout the world. In contrast to America’s founding document with the promises of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness Iran’s founding document pledges death, tyranny, and the pursuit of jihad.

Netanyahu continued to say Iran’s regime is as radical as ever, its cries of “Death to America,” that same America that it calls the “Great Satan,” as loud as ever. This deal won’t be a farewell to arms. It would be a farewell to arms control. And the Middle East would soon be crisscrossed by nuclear tripwires. A region where small skirmishes can trigger big wars would turn into a nuclear tinderbox. If anyone thinks this deal kicks the can down the road, think again. When we get down that road, we’ll face a much more dangerous Iran, a Middle East littered with nuclear bombs and a countdown to a potential nuclear nightmare.

I am but one old man without a collage education or expertise in world affairs, but even living out here in the wilderness one learns things about life. When I first arrived one of the first lessons I learned is to accept people as they are until you learn different. America in dealing with Iran over the years has learned they can not be trusted. With regards to nuclear power they have in the past agreed to treaties and turned around and ignored them, so what makes this administration think this treaty would be any different.

When you are repeatedly lied to by someone or for that matter some nation
why would you think they are not lying again?

Its not always black and white… Ferguson revisited

March 13, 2015

P.1No opening paragraph with glimpses at my old life and how it relates to today’s posting just the headline I know you are familiar with… “Two police officers shot on the steps of their police station”. What parent-less idiot would shot police officers for no just reason and how could this person grow up to think that this shooting would garner a response favorable to its cause?

The race situation in this country has no hope of ever completely changing when we have parent-less idiots: singing racial slurs on school busses, white supremacy members that think any race other than white is inferior to them, black teenagers that have no respect for police or anyone in authority, whites and blacks who think they are ‘entitled’ too…well everything that others have to work hard for and cowardly thugs that think shooting policemen will in some way further their agenda.

There is a term used, back when I was in the Army, that said we have to “change the hearts and minds of our enemy”, but I am too much of a realist to think we could no more change the ‘heart or mind’ of those who burned down their neighbors stores in Ferguson, Missouri than the white supremacists who think racial purity is the only answer.

I have used the phrase ‘parent-less’ a couple times above because I am sure anyone that shoots policemen or burns their neighbors business could never have had a parent that taught them right from wrong. I do think we can change the minds and hearts of our children as long as we get to them early enough, because as parents we set the example for our young by our every word and action. Young people are like sponges that absorb every thing that happens around them and these observations mold them as they mature.

If they hear us continually berate and disrespect the police or we continuously comment derogatorily about some actions taken by them they how can we expect them to act differently. If we show by our example that living on unemployment, assistance or food stamps allows us to have a somewhat normal life do you think that they will go out and take a job at $7.00 an hour that requires them to show up on time every day and work hard? When we do not support a teacher when they say our child needs to study more in order to pass will that student work any harder? And when they see everyone from local officials to congressmen and even the President ignore laws how can we expect them to obey any law at all?

This posting presents no solution only food for thought,
but I say even if it is too late
we still must start now to change this cycle
because we have seen the direction of the road our nation is on.

Blogging canceled because of snow and old age

March 9, 2015

3.9I was standing at the mouth of our driveway, and with the wind blowing at 20 miles an hour it cut trough my parka and thermals with ease. It made me think of a National Geographic special I had just watched showing a few stalks of grass being blown by the harsh arctic winds as that wind raked the Alaskan wilderness.

There were times when I would shovel the snow from my doorway to the junction of the Elliott highway and our driveway but that was years ago and I was in much better shape. Now I am barely able to shovel for more than a couple minutes before I have to stop…. and thus the reason for this non-posting.

I know the amount of snow we received does not compare to Boston or Buffalo but since Tuesday when it first started to snow I have been outside shoveling every day just trying to keep up with those ‘snow showers’. Then on Saturday it finally decided to stop with any more heavy accumulation and I have been trying to clear my truck and drive since then. I was planning on a trip to Fairbanks on Tuesday but I still have some work to finish so it will be yet another couple days before I have time to sit , ponder and write about our world and its many twists and turns.

So with Gods grace
I will finish what needs to be done
make my journey to town
then hopefully once again write a posting
that you find worthy of your time.

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