Sunday, December 13, 2009

Letting out the Horses after the Snow.

We are well into December and we have had our first decent snowfall. I always like the first snow, especially if it has some volume to it, like the blanket we just got last week.

I always remember as a kid getting dressed up to go out, and that "let's go out and ram around in the snow feeling!". That never really goes totally away, even after the long months of a cold winter.

It lasted two days and we got about 6 inches of the white powdery stuff, with a good wind drifting. I like scoop shoveling out the doors and then coming in from the wild and woolly winter of Minnesota.

The tree work slows and I am kept busy (thankfully) at the adjoining horse barn there in Stillwater.

The day after and the wind has fallen off. We wake to a crystal blue sky and a pure white landscape. My drive to work goes by lakes with sparkling ice sheets that are soon, but not yet, dotted with fishing houses.

I pass white rolling hills with white capped tree-lines, and fence posts; each one holding up three strands of barbed wire and a small pillar of snow.

I see cows and horses and people getting the mail, or kids waiting for the bus; all of them with breath clouds that freeze tiny sparkly diamonds in midair.

Just before getting to work, I descend along a tree lined creek bed as it drops to the Saint Croix river, less than a mile further down the road.

On this particular day, the storm has past, the shoveling needs to be done, and the horses have been in the barn for over a day and would really like to go out.

Here is where it kinda separates those walking horses and those leading horses. ..and we will find out if you have been paying attention.

The main barn layout has the stalls facing inward towards the arena.

There is an aisle on either side of the arena. The stall faces are on one (outboard) side of the aisle, and a half wall with posts on the other (inboard) side of the aisle.

So if you are standing in the arena you can look into all the stalls on both sides and see the horses facing you.

They can also see you. When you are walking down an aisle and have hay, or are leading a horse, or whatever, the horses on the other side of the arena are watching you. And they react like you should expect, if you have been paying attention.

Some horses are patient, some are not. Some are down right a pain in the ass.

It is not wise to leave a horse alone, at least the ones that are used to being around other horses all the time, like the ones I work with. They are instinctively herd animals.
So the first ones out are usually neighbors, or are in the same paddock.

Some cannot be lead together. Some need boots or a blanket. Some need to be treated sternly, some are waay too timid and tender. And some are just old.

Some are young and are often unpredictable and a bother to lead.

So, as you get the horses individually harnessed up, out of their stalls, and into their respective and proper paddocks; a lot is going through your mind, or it should be if you've been paying attention and you're not just a fat-head, dragging your boots around, and just mucking stalls.

You must be in control and they must know this. This is done mostly through attitude, body movement and talking.

You don't need to be rough or gruff, just convince them that you will fend off the mountain lion when it comes jumping out of the tree.

I can spot right off, someone who is not really comfortable or aware around the horses. For some reason they often have a desire to try and hide this fact. You have to watch these people, they can cause problems until made more aware.

So as I am going about the business at hand I am thinking ahead a bit.

Priorities include: I am cleaning this barn so I want them out fast, cause they keep filling the stalls. I want the problem children out first, so their out of the way and not causing trouble for others. I want to make as few trips back and forth, so I like to double or triple or quad run the horses out if they are game for it. I want them to damage nothing, if they do it could halt everything and I will probably be the one fixing it.

After being boxed up for a day we are lucky to double up the less problematic ones.

It being cold out, I also like to shut the doors behind me when leading the horses in and out, it usually means a spin about at the door, but it helps keep the heat in, big-time.

So the way I start usually is to grab the two Arabian mares (-very flighty-) and harness and blanket them up and take them together, to their paddock down below. Then they're done and out of the way.

Well they were a little springy, all eyes and ears, and when I opened the door to the bright outside world the black one gave a little snort. Well, I let here know everything just fine and out they came. I shut the door and lead them, short leashed, as they pranced all the way down to the pen.

When I released them, they were off like a couple of springs, galloping up the hill, kicking snow and looking all over. Then they came back down to the hay for their morning munch.

By then, when you walk in the barn; half the horses are eyeing you, a third of them are pacing, and several are whinnying at you. "Hey me next! I wanna go out and play!" and in so doing are getting the others excited.

Oh, and some have to stay in per the weekly schedule, they get a flake of hay and I forgot and when I bring it they start hollering about that too.

Some, when taken together go at such different paces that you are nearly pulled in two between the slow poke and the "I want my hay" quick-stepper. Lots of pulling in both directions can leave you very frustrated, especially when your trying to shut a paddock gate snaphook and chain. Ahggg!

Sheesh, lets get these animals out of the barn and get some peace and quiet so we can get the stalls cleaned.

Some, like Sulivan, are such a pacing bother that they go out early and, being part of a set of four, he can go out with Max right now. Then I can get Dancer out on the return and start to take advantage of the back and forth pattern as I enter and leave one end of the barn, then the other, leading horses out to paddocks and their morning hay.

It's kinda like being a bartender at an unruly road house, or a manager at a hotel with very noisy and demanding customers.

You can't lead these two together but you can those two, but one has to have his halter removed at the paddock gate, he has a sore that is healing on the nose.

And on and on it goes, every day at many horse barns throughout Minnesota, as it has for decades, centuries...

And this barn eventually returns to a relatively normal routine as the horses go out into this winter wonder-land, snorting and stomping into paddocks, jumping and kicking...and rolling, lots and lots of rolling and then getting up and shaking and settling into some nice hay.

Now to clean the stalls.

It is kind of fun in its own annoying way.

So those of you, who I have spoken to, may see why, I talk like I do.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Global Warming Was a Fraud and Is Still a Fraud.

When I was working at Riverbend Stables in Rockford Minnesota in the 90's, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued its report, (based on the data out of the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia), that 2000 scientists had come to the "consensus" that "Global Warming" was a real and urgent problem brought on by human industry.

The debate was over, so they said.

I found that interesting and did some research. You see I am a member of "The River Warren Research Committee" (RWRC).

I am the editor of "The Warren Report" the official newsletter of RWRC. You can read some fun and informative past issues Here.

At that time here in Minnesota there was a great "debate" ongoing over the condition of the Minnesota River in southern Minnesota. Very much like the UN, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA)had issued a report stating that the Minnesota River was on the verge of ecological collapse and that great changes were necessary to save it. The "solutions" to the "Problem" offered by the MPCA where drastic and wide ranging.

The Minnesota River watershed covers about a quarter of the state and they suggested draconian measures to address this "calamity". Greater restrictions on farmers, large fees and fines to change behavior, identify and dealing with "bad actors", and purchasing huge swaths of land by THE STATE to remove it from private hands, was just some of their plans.

For some reason they think property held by big distant governments is better than in the hands of local individual Americans and Minnesotans.

What was most interesting was the interim report half way through the MPCA and Multi-agency report on the Minnesota River. They say in it they have not reached any conclusions and then outline a whole host of conclusions and recommended policies based on them.

This is known as aprori reasoning. They already had the conclusion and were tailoring a "scientific" report to support it, much like the UN and its global warming study.

This is bad science.

Also similar, was that what was finally released in both cases was the "executive" review of the study, a overarching review of the massive multi-agency study.

In both cases the individuals in the larger study were given a small focus to address and were usually unaware of the activities of the others involved in the "global" study.

In the UN's case most of the "2000 scientist" were not atmospheric and the like, but "social" scientists, specializing in modifying human behavior, not hard scientific study of our natural world.

In both cases the executive study was written for political, rather than scientific concerns. In reviewing both, you are hard pressed to find the data in the main study to bolster the conclusion in the executive study.

The River Warren Research Committee issued a study to rebut the official MPCA (and other Federal and State Agency study) Although a little dated, it still holds up and can be read in full here.

It is very informative and is well worth the read. It also comes to some very different conclusions because it takes into account some extremely important factors ignored by the government agencies looking for more money and power.

The Minnesota River is naturally a flood prone, sediment laden stream due to its very unique geological characteristics. Not because of human farming in the watershed, contrary to the official position.

With that in mind, all the expensive, intrusive and behavior changing policies pushed by the government seem unnecessary and irrational. Just like the UN's global warming nonsense.

Now the UN is found in a situation similar to the MPCA.

Especially in light of the correspondence between the so called "scientists" at the UN that shows them fudging data, stifling debate, and denying peer review to opposing viewpoints and outright professional destruction of skeptical scientists.

The debate is over if you, like Al Gore, refuse to debate.

You can and probably should read some of these behind the scene UN correspondences here.

"On 20 November 2009, emails and other documents, apparently originating from within the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia.

From the link above...
"The authenticity of these emails has been confirmed by most of the relevant parties including the CRU at University of East Anglia and many of the authors. These emails contain some quite surprising and even disappointing insights into what has been happening within the climate change scientific establishment. Worryingly this same group of scientists are very influential in terms of economic and social policy formation around the subject of climate change."

Here is a little taste of the "scientists" internal conversations..."Hi Keith,
Thanks--yes, we seem to back in the days of McCarthyism in the States. Fortunately, we have
some good people who will represent us legally pro bono, and in the best case scenario,
this backfires on these thugs..."

What is the scientific method?..It is the taking of a hypothesis, generating a repeatable experiment-removing as many external factors as possible, issuing studies open to peer review.

Science is based on skepticism. Show me the data...nothing but the facts mam...repeatable experiments, and open and honest debate and rebuttal with others.

They wont show their data or computer models. Why? That's sound science?

Science is not dropping a paper on the table and saying the debate is over, no matter what your station in life. ( being an ex vice president of the United States.)

That didn't seem to matter to the ClimateKooks. They marched forward with their predictions of dire calamity. Everything from death of millions of people, flooding coastlines, fires, floods,pestilence, hurricanes, even increased poison ivy.

Here in Minnesota, we have for well over a decade, put in place policies and behavior modifying rule, regulations, and taxes to combat this phantom menace. All the while the STATE run media blares out these terrible predictions, Minnesota is under threat and we have to act NOW!!!!

These have made electricity more expensive, gasoline more expensive, automobile more expensive (and dangerous read this newsletter with information on deadly FEDERAL CAFE standards for autos.)

There is no time to wait they say. All the while HUGE sums of money are spent by governments on individuals, groups,"non-profits" and agencies.

These grants and tax dollars have, and still are corrupting.

"Our studies show a great concern and need for more studies". Of course they do.

What a racket. The MOB could only dream of such returns...then again where/who is the MOB now?

Like the MPCA, the UN is lying to take your money, property, freedom and future.

They think too many people are living, or aspire to live, the lifestyle enjoyed by Al Gore. Lots of homes, lots of cars, lots of travel, lots of wine and dine.

Speaking of Al, I was at the gala premier of his polemic "An Inconvenient Truth" what a farce. Even the United Kingdom ordered that when shown to children in school it has to first list the 17 proven factual errors in the propaganda film poured into the minds of these poor kids.

Our leaders are telling us to do with less. Turn down the thermostat, eat less meat, unplug your cell phones, drive less, buy less, use less; or we will all fry and the polar bears will die.

What a bunch of nonsense from the do as I say, not as I do crowd.

It is sad to see a whole generation of Americans (the 60's crowd) so blithely give up their and YOUR (and your children s) freedom for such irrational claptrap.

Sensing a little problem the eco-freaks, true to form, want to change the rules in mid game. Now they want to talk of "climate change", as opposed to the discredited "global warming". What a farce.

They seem to put little value in Liberty, at least yours that is. They demand theirs.

Freedom is the only thing you cannot have unless you are willing to give it to others.

Hopefully, this worldwide deadly delusion has started to come to an end.

As they say at the River Warren Research Committee, "Truth is an Alternate Form of Expression".

The folks in the media should give it a try some time.

Friday, December 4, 2009

I Debate Minnesota Sierran on PBS.

If you want to see me debate Clyde Hanson, Conservation Committee Chair of The North Star Chapter of the Sierra Club about timber issues, click here.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Press release issued in 2007. After 60 buildings burn.

This was released after the fire along the Gunflint trail torched 60 buildings, many old historic and sentimental log cabins and homes.

May 9, 2007
PRESS RELEASE: Sierra Club Agenda proves costly again.

Statement by: Forrest C. Wilkinson.
Editor of “The Warren Report”; official newspaper of...
The River Warren Research Committee, RWRC.
Go for more info.

Statement: Here in Minnesota we have great pride in the outdoors. There are basically two ways to discuss items concerning the territory that is Minnesota.

A) Assume a heavily regulated people – prevent potential harms and hazards to people through State agencies.
B) Assume a lightly regulated people – deal with harms and hazards to people as they arise through courts and juries.

In "A" we tend to trust the data from the agencies of the State and severely question the facts and motives of anyone suggesting less regulation.

This is what I refer to as “The Sierra Club Way”.

In "B" we tend to trust the data from a free-people and severely question the facts and motives of anyone suggesting more regulation.

This is what I refer to as “The American Way”.

We as a people through our elected representatives here in Saint Paul have chosen "A" …”The Sierra Club Way”.

We did this through long debate and with our eyes wide open over decades. So we must accept the natural results of our political decisions.

As we continue to follow the Sierra Club Agenda for Minnesota we must stoically admit and accept that there will be costs to be paid by individual people. By our fellow Minnesotans.

When we accept that dams are; as Sierra Club Hero David Foreman puts it, “At the center of environmental hell”, we must accept all the facts resulting from these positions. We must expect that places on unique rivers like the Red and the Minnesota will experience wild fluctuation of water level. If we refuse to use dams for “Flood Flattening”; towns like Ada, and Breckenridge and Granite Falls will have regular floods, with the resulting destruction to people and their property.

When we say that we must stop some odd concept like “sprawl” we should expect less roadwork and bridge building. Stillwater has been waiting for a new bridge for over fifty years. We will; and have seen, not only loss of productivity, but also human life, to the Sierra Club Agenda directing our transportation infrastructure.

And when we say all logging should stop in all National Forests, it is only rational to expect the conditions the people of Cook County are experiencing right now. With the resulting property loss and atmospheric contaminants. Why is a burned stump better than a logged one?

The Sierra Club Agenda is not necessarily worse for the “environment”, but it is most certainly very hard on People.

Forrest C Wilkinson.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Cruising to the End of November

Yesterday; Saturday, November 21, 2009 Steve, Gary and I took the 28 foot pontoon boat out for one last cruise on Eagle Lake near Big Lake.

It was nice and sunny, although a little windy by the end of the day. Gary and Steve both got skunked and didn't catch a thing.

I, on the other hand (who does not fish), brought my portable propane oven and was cooking nonstop.

Cinnamon rolls, pizza poppers, a whole rice and enchilada family meal, a blueberry pie and chocolate chip cookies.
All hot and tasty while we puttered about, the only boat on the lake.

We never made it to the bratwurst.

It was great. Check out the pictures at my facebook account here.

On another note, I have begun correspondence with the organizers of Stillwater's "Lumberjack Days" to see if I can set up and operate our lumbermill at next years celebration.

I hope we can. Stillwater is the birthplace of Minnesota and was born by a sawmill.

However these days the folks of the area seem to like the "theater" of the lumberjack but not so much the actual enterprise of logging and timber cutting.

I would not be surprised if I were to be informed that cutting logs into boards on a lumbermill does not "fit" with their "vision" for the future of lumberjack days in Stillwater.

Still I think it is worth doing and they may be all for it, who knows?

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Mid November

It has been raining overnight, not heavy, light and off and on. It is Saturday morning November 14, 2009 in Forest Lake Minnesota.

I have been working in Joe Haines Tree and Horse world in Stillwater. I have brought the band saw from Wisconsin to his property there.

This makes me very happy. Buck my brother lives there just across the Mississippi a piece. He is doing things too, I checked out the dry kiln he has put together to the specifications drawn by John Wilkinson, Our dad.

Dads Dry Kiln my be revolutionary to those interested in drying wood.

Buck (Blake), has got a neat set up there in Gainsville Wisconsin. Joe, my boss let me use the one ton to haul the lumbermill to Stillwater.

Today it is 7am and I thought I'd note this before helping Steve haul metal chips to the recyclers. Yesterday we wrestled down and chunk-hauled a black walnut tree.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

That's Not The Wells Fargo Wagon You See on the Horizon.

Well, we are into November and the political baggage trains are beginning to sort out into common flagged assemblies. And they have begun their dusty and clattering treks about the State.

On the crazy meandering paths that leave no home or hamlet un-touched, these overloaded wagon trains of campaigns; like gypsies of old, rattle into sight, coming in over the horizon cloaked in a haze of dust, movement, noise and flies.

By the end of the month, these nomads will have, more or less, concentrated into two long lumbering wagon trains, each full of pack animals, rough handlers, noisy hangers-on and lots of "bummers" walking with the noisy rabble.

They'll eventually reach the Capitol in Saint Paul, however each individual colorful and noisy wagon may be in a different train by the time it gets there. And many a sad and worn out wagon doesn't complete the arduous and inefficient slog. The countryside is littered with old rotting corps' of once noisy and colorful sturdy platform-wagons.

Until they return to the dust from which they came, the gaudily painted wood and fabric decays alongside the main roads, and back roads. These derelicts always bring forth the same stories when passed by the trains. It reminds the observer of a line of elephants passing the grave of a now gone but once strong companion, each trumpeting the same sad note as they pass.

The Minnesota Legislative Session is to Convene 12 noon, Thursday, February 4, 2010.

Minnesota used to meet every other year, and I think it still could and should, however that isn't the way we do it now.

Minnesota budgets on a bi-annual basis. This years session is to deal with the "bonding Bill". Coupled with it also being an election year, there is a great deal of incentive for them to get to "business" and leave fast.

They have campaigns to tend to....
The wild card on everyone's mind is that the Governor of Minnesota has said he will not be seeking re-election. The throne is open for occupancy in November 2010, one year from now.

However, the clamoring mobs constantly hovering around the circus always want more. And they often condense into one. Like a school of herring they can mesmerize with their flashing colorful mosaic show. Unlike herring they can shout, and they do, in large placard waiving throngs.

Do they, the elected, safely evacuate the coral confines of the Capitol buildings to hunt for their supper, or will they be mesmerized and baffled into the endless twists and turns to be found in the labyrinth of Saint Paul?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A Chilly October.

The first Saturday of October I had a good evening at the Minnesota Harvest Horse Show. I borrowed Steve's cool camera and went to the State Fair Ground and the Hippodrome to photograph the lead line class just before the nine thousand dollar Grand Prix.

Also, I took pictures of the "Jumping with the Stars" that took place just before the Prix. You can see pictures here

It was fun to watch the jump-crew, half of whom I know, at work from the stands for a change.

Since then the weather here in Minnesota took a turn for the winter. We have had three snowfalls of an inch or more, and we haven't got to Halloween yet.

The first fell soft and white straight down while I was at "HH" (double H) stables in Stillwater. It was nice and began to feel like Thanksgiving.

It was week two of October.

Since then it has been cold and we have had two other snows, slow to melt and lingering for over a day. I am ready for the winter, maybe one more pair of gloves...

Since then it has warmed back to the fifties and even sixties.

It has been a good week, I got into the woods with Steve and Gary. They have a permit to cut trees for fire wood in a State Managed wooded park. I helped out and we made a good two hauls with Steves truck; a load to Gary and his family home and one to Steve and Melodies house.

We brought the grill and cooked steaks and had lots of snacks. I like logging camp WAY better than hunting camp. The woods were sunlite and stunning with yellow and gold maples while the oaks held green big leaves. It was right out of the picture books. Steve brought the camera and I intend to upload pictures on facebook.

Today is Sunday the 18th of October and the sun is up and I have some personal chores to tend to.

It also has been a week of decision and redirection.

One of these seem to lead to the concept of moving the Band-sawmill rig to Stillwater. (If we do, it would be the only sawmill in Stillwater Minnesota. I like that Idea.)

Much is happening out in the field on the political fronts, here in Minnesota as well as at a National level.

Today the weather is beautiful and the trees are bright and happy, I'll put some of that stuff in the next post. Right now I have to get a gas bottle and test out my.... new portable oven/stove!

Check it out here I got it on e-bay and it is so cool.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Minnesota Harvest Horse Show.

This morning there was a inch of snow on the ground. You could just see the tips of the grass poking through giving the snow a neat green tinge.

October 10, 2009 started more than a little chilly.

The sun is now out and its almost noon. I intend to go to the State Fair Grounds for the Minnesota Harvest Horse Show, we have an entrant in the Lead Line Class.

I am not working this show, I have in the past. My friends Roberto and Jamey are working. It will be packed, the Hippodrome with about five thousand people.

The Grand Prix has a good size prize and will draw some talent. They'll get to six feet on the jumps in class six.

It will be good.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Autumn is here.

It arrived over a 9 hour windy evening two days past, plus.

Today; Sept. 29th, was a day tinged with a special glow and special fall highlights.

For me it started early, I got up and rushed to Double "H",... and put out hay.

It was chilly with a light gray cover.

It was cold and I forgot my jacket so I put my brown duck coveralls over my jeans.

After helping put most of the horses out, Joe gave me my "marching orders".

I got the one ton truck and towed the stump grinder into town, following mike and the guys dropping a couple of trees.

We, Eric (in the grapple truck)and I, did only 4 stumps total but several were many, many years old and occupied the entire boulevard between the Minneapolis neighborhood street and the sidewalk.

The sky had by now cleared mostly and showed brilliant blue sky between the clouds drifting by. The street was newly paved and all the cars were gone, it reminded me of the old days in a Minneapolis neighborhood.

I wanted to roller-skate, but we had work to do....

We finished this up, and then we went back to "HH".

We got further orders.
I got the smaller stump machine and we (Eric and I) cleaned up a small two tree job in Stillwater after Mike and Justin had dropped them earlier.

By now the sky was becoming more clear and the wind that had lasted for two days, bringing in the autumn chill to Minnesota, had finally calmed.

By the end of the day the sky was blazing blue and the waxing moon showed its approach to full....and it is perfectly calm.


Pictures cannot show what I see.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Summer is Waning While Some are Whining.

It is nearing the end of September and the weather has been warm and mostly dry.

I have returned to a somewhat normal schedule. Tree work out of Stillwater.
My little car is about done, and I need a replacement.

The truck (our 83' ford 1 ton) needs tires. about 800+ dollars.
I also hope to bring the band saw up if I get the truck and tires.

I need a spot to park the saw, ideally a place where it can operate. Maybe at "HH".
I also would like a place nearby to park my motor boat and the little sailboat.

I am thinking about the coming winter, it is best to think ahead. I need boots, gloves, coat...

But today; Sunday, September 20, the sun is up and the coffee is on and I am warm.

I have been following with interest many things these days.

One is the effect Washington County's new "Land and Water Legacy Act", not to be confused with THE STATES new "Legacy Act" sales tax increase.

Washington County; my county, is big and beautiful. It borders the rugged Saint Croix river on the east, and comes to a point on the south end where it meets the Mississippi river, like the state of Illinois does where Ohio River meets our muddy Mississippi.

The main body of Washington County Minnesota is a rolling highground of plains and hardwoods sprinkled with little towns dotting the countryside surrounded by lots of farmland, all laced with fish-loaded lakes and streams that pool and drain the rain and snow that falls on this mid-Minnesota wonderland.

I live in the North West corner of the county, on Highway 61 in the town of Forest Lake.

It is a good description of the town. We have lakes and forests. I am happy here just some thirty five miles north of Saint Paul; Minnesota's capitol city.

This is just one of Eighty seven counties. Minnesota counties are generally large and they are all unique.

Washington county is preparing to raise its property tax levy 1%, and is also mulling over deciding how much they intend to participate with the "Land and Water Legacy program" passed by the county voters authorizing $10 million in bonding to purchase and preserve "environmentally sensitive lands" along lakes and rivers.

There are some lakes that are "impaired" as defined by the MPCA (Minnesota Pollution Control Agency). They have some algae blooms. they don't like the phosphorus reading.

Now the County is forced to deal with reality.

Do they want to complain that they have to raise property tax to cover costs because of reduced property values and less money from THE STATE, while taking on an additional $1.7 Million dollar annual principal and interest payment to purchase property and remove it from tax rolls.

And on a national level the discussion over health insurance is picking up apace.

I think that most things done by THE UNITED STATES should be done by THE STATES, and currently most things done by THE STATE should be done by THE COUNTIES and most things done by THE COUNTIES should be done by THE TOWNS or better yet by THE INDIVIDUALS.

I think the proposals being thrown about concerning "health insurance" are bad ideas.

I have thought a lot of ideas coming from the government class are bad, lots of bad ideas come from Saint Paul here in Minnesota.

They talk of Minnesota Nice. Well let me tell you, they are not so nice if you start to question them a little.

I thought the Wetland act was a bad idea. A one-size-fits-all, form and fee generating program that sounds good should be based on facts, not fanciful notions of flood control by swamp.

Boy did I get called names over that one. The Dept Commissioner of the DNR gave me a little lecture.

I thought the Septic "8020" rule was a bad idea, forcing people to immediately spend $20,000 + on a mound system prone to fail by freezing in Minnesota winters, (no matter what the global warming kooks in the state house say)is a bad way to "create" jobs in rural Minnesota.

It was suggested that I didn't care about children.

I thought the Forest Stewardship Act was an underfunded ruse to get more Sierra Club, anti-logging policies enacted on private property, as they seem to be getting the public property fairly locked up now. It would result in deadly and destructive forest fires

Why is a burnt stump better than a logged one? Jobs and power and products vs. wreck and ruin, destruction and ATMOSPHERIC CONTAMINANTS.

Hey you carbon-o-phobic types, where is your reasoning brain?

I was called a greedy agent of the timber industry who was just a Global Warming Denier, just like someone who denies the holocaust.

Never discuss the issue always attack the messenger.

I thought the recent State-Wide Legacy Act, that raised property taxes for water, property and the arts was a bad idea.

I thought the rhetoric surrounding the discussion was much too alarming for the conditions they were attempting to portray. Minnesota has clean air, fresh water and health forests. Children were not getting Methomoglobonemia but they kept bringing it up to scare voters.

I ended up getting our very own lovable Ron Schara right in my face asking me where I get my figures. I admitted I got mine from the same place he got his, MPCA, DNR, EPA... I don't think he was really listening at that point in our little "conversation".

Let me tell you, the "raise taxes and programs" crowd are nice and polite until you disagree with them. Then its venom and brick bats.

I could go on and on about my many, many, many experiences with snotty officious patronizing government agents and elected officials.

So, now I see more and more of regular Americans being called names by "journalists", "reporters", lawmakers and Presidents, all just because they may have ideas contrary to the government know-it-all's.

I think this is terrific.

Now more and more people are seeing what these people in power really think of us.

Last year we had a convention in Saint Paul that was attacked by the Democratic Party with infantry, bombs, fire and caustic weapons.

Most reporting was about whether the police overreacted.

Now these same Democrats in the news rooms are wondering if those demonstrating against an ever expanding government are, "corporate manufactured","ignorant","mostly racists","greedy doctors","too well dressed","unstable","dangerous","selfish","Un-American"

The Democrats, the lords of protest and civil disobedience(mostly government subsidized), cannot stand the notion of freedom loving Americans using their stage.

It galls them. I say Good.

I think it is fantastic that more and more of my fellow Americans and fellow Minnesotans experience the treatment I have been getting for over twenty years now, just for voicing my opinion.

Most people in government like their job and want to keep it. This motivates their reasoning and actions.

I am prepared to pay any government workers a lump sum as we close their agencies.

But we must close agencies, departments, silly studies, ridiculous grants, costly programs and at the same time dramatically reduce the tax burden on people.

Nothing else will really matter much.

At least not in a positive way.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Home on Labor Day

It is Labor day, Monday September 7. The sky is clear with little wind and I am back home in Forest Lake, Minnesota.

This morning I am doing laundry. I returned from the Otter Creek Horse Show last evening about eight o'clock. It's a sprawling facility and we jump crew cover a very large area.

It is really one of the most spectacular settings.

The Otter Creek Horse Show is easily one of the most beautiful in all mid-America, if not throughout the entire nation.

Located in the northern edge of the driftless zone of mid-west Wisconsin just north of wheeler it is a magically perfect terrain for an equine paradise.

Carved out of the stunning northern hardwood forest, Mark and Lena Warner have created a fantastic wonderland of fields, pastures, jumps and trails.

Be it dressage, hunter & jumper shows, long distance eventing, a gentle ride in the valley or a fun trail ride in the woods, Otter Creek Farms has what you are looking for.

The rolling wooded hills are laced with horse trails and rustic jumps, while the low ground of the valley, also dotted with neat rustic jumps, is a groomed savanna.

The barns are large and roomy, the last one they built from local wood and it is beautiful.

At the one end of this long green shangri-La is the upper sand ring where the ponies and the youngsters did their hunter and stirrup work.

Heading from there down a long gentle slope you pass the schooling area they use.

The cocoon of trees on both sides opens as you continue.

You can now see farther down the valley, and also you are approaching the sprawling main sand ring. It is very large and perfect for the Hunters.

From here the grounds dogleg left another hundred and fifty yards or more, towards a timber-framed, open sided pavilion. It is nice, and seats forty or fifty people.

Here you can sit and have a drink or a bite, you are at the foot of the third ring. We used it for the jumpers.

From here you can see to the other end of the valley bottom.

Easily half of the pastured valley bottom is open for riding and access to the multitude of trails heading into the wooded hills ringing this horse paradise.

When the fall colors change a dazzling display of reds, greens, and yellows envelops the grounds. It is absolutely effervescent.

The owners are nice and aren't afraid of a chainsaw. As a matter of fact there is much chainsaw art all about the grounds, Bears, eagles and of course, otters.

This is the one show I do that is not in Minnesota.

I may do some more work there, they do lots dressage and eventing stuff and the walking is good for my leg.

Today I get organized, tomorrow I go to work at the stable/tree service in Stillwater.

Time to eat.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Minnesota State Fair Horse Show

For me the Minnesota State Fair is nearly over, although there is another week to go.

I do the jump crew work for the English horse show over the first week.
The weather has been good and the crew seems to be working well. Its busy in the Hippodrome and we need to get the jumps in and out.

Yesterday the cattle were being judged before the ring was released to us.

They are all groomed fine and the stands are full of cow folks from all over the 87 counties of Minnesota.

They are some of the best looking cows in the world.

The announcer really knows his bovine.

Class after class goes by and is judged. Lots of kids with their livestock are all gussied up for their effort to win a ribbon at the Minnesota State Fair.

There were easily four thousand people watching in the Colosseum, half of them in cowboy hat.

The Hippodrome is shaped like a very, very large Quonset-hut made of concrete. The dirt covered ring inside is huge.

They have been judging class after class for hours.
In they line up. A line twenty, thirty cow or more long is no problem for the Minnesota State Fair Hippodrome.

When the final lineup is in the ring, you can hear a pin drop.
The announcer helps you figure out what to look for in a cow.

You can feel lots of building suspense.

Eventually the judge walks the line gives a second and a third final look over... when...

The crowd explodes when the judge slaps the haunches of the blue ribbon champion.

The winner received a brand new truck and trailer.

Next it's pictures while we clear the ring and try to get the folks out so we can drag the ring and set up for the jumpers scheduled to show in twenty minutes.

It took us twenty five to do it. We were moving pretty good.

All went well, and today; Sunday, we will do the setup and take down for the last day of the Minnesota State Fair English Horse Show 2009.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Sailing a Small Lake in Mid Minnesota

August has arrived, and we have finally had a string of ninety plus degree days.

Although cooler than some, I think this has been a magically perfect summer; whether-wise, here in our fantastic state of Minnesota.

The sailboat "Liberty" has been plying the waters of Forest Lake in Washington County.

(For those not from here, that is a county about forty five miles north of the twin cities bordering the Saint Croix river and Wisconsin on the east.)

We did have one foray to Lake Independence west of the cities when I did the horse show in Loretto.

She is a single masted fourteen foot fiberglass sailboat that can be launched from almost anything with a ball hitch.

With bench seating port and starboard and a fore-deck to hangout or swim from makes it perfect for the many small to medium glacial remnant lakes sprinkled across Minnesota like silver coins.

She seats four, perfect for two.

Forest Lake is nice and close.

Just about three hours before sunset or after sunrise is the time to catch the lake breeze.

I am usually one of the few boats and only sailboat on the lake in the morning, and the evening time is a great time to socialize.

I like to leave work, drive home, shower, pack some water and munchies, load and go. I can be launching in fifteen minutes if there is no wait at the launch by the lakeside park.

Once on the lake it is now all about observation. Your vantage and viewpoint changes.

You now see the shoreline surrounding you rather than seeing a pan of water from shore.

The wind often travels in unseen puffs but their sign is there if you look. They hit the surface of the lake and are forced to flatten out. As they are forced to change direction on the face in contact with the water, the wind gives a slap to the surface and the energy transfer makes little waves.

These roughly round, traveling areas of rippled water are often called a catspaw. They commonly form that shape, with the round "toes" typically on the leading edge.

Catspaws on the water can be very usefull to the sailor who knows how to ride the edges, especially if he is in a hurry to return to port to take advantage of the libations available at the "Laker" bar and grill just two hundred paces from the dock on the east side of Forest Lake.

Pull in, tie off, walk in. Food, friends, sun and drinks.

August is here, I have three horse shows to work over the next four week.
(One will cover the first week at the Minnesota State Fair. Hope to see you there!)

I treasure these times on the lake.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Summer Sun Laughs on Minnesota

It has been a grand and glorious June and July in Minnesota. The corn got the rain it needed when it needed it, in much of the corn belt of south and west Minnesota.

I have spent a great deal of time on the water over the last week. Eagle lake in Sherburne County is a fine glacial remnant lake. It has fine folks living around it and we have a friendly port we call "Four Docks" that lets us moor the 28' pontoon of Steves'.

There are a happy set of bald eagles nesting on shore, and there are at least four adult loons and many chicks. I expect there are more.

The loon fishes by diving, and they are very successful. They often surface near our anchored boat.

They are an old and ancient bird with a haunting laugh of a call and piercing red eyes. The Common Loon has a white speckled back and necklace on a black background that comes with a neat Indian story.

Our state bird, has legs set way back for swimming and it is clumsy on land, it is so old its bones are still mostly solid.

The Bald Eagle; our national emblem, is also a well dressed bird and is really quite impressive circling in for its landing on an oak fifty feet away.

We spent the Independence Day and evening fishing and grilling and eating watermelon and drinking beer on the lake. The evening fireworks display by the locals ringing the lake was fantastic.

We watched as rockets lifted above the lake from all sides with reflected displays, and heard their reports cross the water at the speed of sound. It was fantastic.

When we weighed anchor to put in after about three hours of this loud morter and rocket umbrella (many were still firing), there was a slight gunpowder fog on the lake.

It was super cool pulling into port with the forward navigation lights glowing red and green in the mist.

I have been doing tree and stable work out of Stillwater on the Saint Croix River across from Wisconsin as a regular job.

I have been also allowed to take some time off to work the horse show circuit here in Minnesota.

I do the Jump Crew stuff, I don't like doing end gate and don't know enough to announce.
Its hard work, but it's fun and pays fairly well.

We set the stage (and take it down) and replace knocked down rails and do other odd jobs.

I will be west of Minneapolis for the Alpine Hunter/Jumper Show next week.

I am bringing the 14' sailboat "Liberty" with, I can launch her on Lake Independence, which is about a mile away from the show grounds and eight from the hotel in Medina.

Lots of other loud and colorful events of note have taken place here in Minnesota.

After many months the long awaited conclusion to the kabuki dance that was the Minnesota U.S. Senate race we have a Senator.

Al Franken.

The candidate offered to the people of Minnesota by the brand (DFL), preferred by those in government and media circles.

Much has been said and I could add more.

I will say Good Luck.

I do not agree with his politics nor those of his party. I think they are bad for my friends in Minnesota and the rest of America as well as worldwide.

I believe that maximizing peoples Freedom, and individuals Liberty is the proven path to a more peaceful, civil, educated, respectful, healthy and prosperous society.

I believe taxing for "Fairness", regardless of its resulting negative tax revenue, is dumb. I do not think we need more taxes and more regulations from THE STATE or THE FED.

I think we need less of both, from both.

Senator Al Franken will make a wonderful standard-bearer for his party.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Making Hay While a Minnesota Sun Shines.

As is the case, since ever I worked in any horse barn, the hay shows up on the real hot days.

Today was a beautiful summer day. Ninety and some odd degrees. This is Minnesota, we are surrounded by vibrant green fields and many, many lakes and ponds.

When the sun comes out lots of water jumps into the air.

First it's all around you and you can feel it. When you go out into the sun it is especially hot and thick. You get damp and hot.

You learn to appreciate a breeze.

Walking in fields is difficult. Cleaning stalls seems never ending. Just picking up a lead line becomes a chore.

It is hot and humid.

You can see over on the horizon, above the tree line, clouds growing. Thick white vapor columns rising and growing. These huge water monsters arise, awaken, and storm across the countryside.

But until then, probably about 4:30 this afternoon, the three hundred bales of hay need to be stacked in the overhead and the barn needs to be cleaned and then the animals need to come back in.

Some are a little sweaty.

They prefer the cool barn, it's not the heat it's the humidity.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Spring is Gone, Summer is Here.

It has been a very busy spring for me.

We have watched the leave come out of the trees and bushes and unfurl. They have that brand new crispness that makes the woods look especially brite and vibrant, you only get that in the spring.

I have seen more Bluebirds, as well as other fun little colorful birds, this spring than ever before. I think its because I am spending more time, especially mornings, very near the Mississippi river and a tributary stream to it - Silver Creek. This is perfect song bird territory and on one of the big migration routes.... Also the owner has bird baths, feeders, suet and hummingbird straws.

It is now the first day of Summer and we have had some hot humid days and some good rains, but not everywhere has had rain and there are many dry spots around Minnesota.

We have made lot's of progress on many fronts.

Base line daily work at the double H stables ("HH")/ Haines Tree Service with weekly forays in the nautical direction.

I also have been taking weekly "breaks" to work jumpcrew at some horse events located about Minnesota.

Just finished one yesterday (Sunday) out Loretto way. we had a happy little hummingbird come into the judges stand, twice.

(Loretto is west of the twin cities about 25 miles for those not familiar with our state. Wooded rolling moraines with homes and farms and lots of glacial remnant lakes.)

I had the sailboat "Liberty" along and got her out on Lake Independence and tested the repaired sail. All is good!

Steve also acquired the 28' "Aqua flite Deck 280" and we have had it up and operating.

It is a FANTASTIC lounging and fishing platform. "Steves' Clubhouse" is a twenty eight foot long and eight foot wide pontoon boat. The front two thirds are flat decked for fishing, swimming or lawn chairs, and the rest is under canopy, with Pilot chair, table and cushioned seating for four.

Steve is a great guy, a fine machinist, but Steve is also a tall heavy landlubber. I am always nervous when canoeing with him. Now we have the perfect platform for everyone! I am going to have to work on uploading some pictures.

I now need to go to get my motor boat out of the shop. 135 Johnson needed help we were not situated to give. This will be our runabout. It's an aluminum V-hull, as yet to be named.

Now she is turn-key ready.

I also had an opportunity to be part of an event in Shorview. I was speaking on the Forests of Minnesota at an event centered on free market ecology. I was the closer, fifth of five.

I think it went well, I brought along a large plywood cutout of the state of Minnesota for display and reference. Gave rough description of things and a little on succession.

I had been living the last week out of a motel in Medina, I am now home. While away I bought Jacklyn, now 4, some animals for her barn. A momma Giraffe and a Baby Giraffe. She liked them so did her mother. I also brought home the game "Hi-Ho Cherry-o". She likes games.

I got a call from the boss at "HH" last nite and she said I didn't have to come in today. That was nice, she new I was wiped.

So today I recover and get back to a normal pattern. Tomorrow I go to work back in Stillwater.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

A Point in Time.

I have been following the Minnesota Legislature for about twenty years now. The House, the Senate, the Governor(s).

I have seen many of all kinds.

I remember Willard Munger before he admitted in the paper he was a socialist and told Paul Wellstone to vacate his pledge to only two terms as Senator.

House leadership under International Falls' Irv. Anderson and the rocky end of that era, leading to the Dee Long's, Phil Carruthers's and Margaret Anderson-Kelliher's.

With the spending and controlling mania of the DFL virtually unchecked, the Government costs has been doubling at an alarming rate while the individuals and businesses of Minnesota carry an ever increasing burden of rules and taxes.

Those that stay I mean, many are leaving. It is sad.

We all remember the Senate, with the firm controlling rule of the Joe Bertram years (of Paynesville in Stearns County). He, with his brother Jeff in the House, where so drunk with power they were handing out PCR chits worth fifty tax dollars to people for haircuts and stealing leather vests from stores.

I was one of his constituents and I went to his office while in session daily to call for his resignation.

He did finally, but the ways of the Minnesota Senate didn't skip a beat, marching ever forward to the glorious future of fairness.

They've had their own history of some rather ignoble behavior on behalf of the people of Minnesota.

Often it seems especially hard on the non-DFL women.

The way they treated Carol Molnau of late comes to mind, and Bob Greenburg, a local vegan eco-freak for light rail had to chose a women Senator (Flynn I think) to pie at the entry to the Senate.

The local papers said the "violence" was in the fist behind the pie. Justifying, at least to themselves, that it was not an act of violence.
I think she was violated.

But that's just the DFL (strib) rationalizing its own uncivilized behavior. They do that a lot you know.

Hubris, the DFL is loaded with Hubris by the tanker-full.

[The one balcony to the Senate is still closed due to the antics of the Sierra Club during the NSP nuclear dry cask storage "debate"]

In an attempt to appear stately the Senate has, in the past, left the more blatant smash and grab work for the more emotional House or maybe the latest "look at me" sitting in the Attorney Generals' Office.

But maintaining the growth pattern of their favorite pet; the Machine of Government here in the North Star State, has required them to sully their white shirts a bit.

And both bodies are much controlled by the agencies of bureaucracy now representing a large DFL voting block.

Just who is running the asylum?

We know if the agency doesn't like an Executive appointment to lead their bureaucracy they will mutiny.

Just as the tough guy; Jesse Ventura, about his attempted appointment of some FBI person to lead the DNR. [very powerful, the eco-govenmental complex of Minnesota]

This year, after five months of ignoring the big budget shortfall, the DFL leadership and majority in the Senate, lead by Lawrence Pogemiller and James Metzen {with a supporting role by DFL house tax committee chairman and governor hopeful of Cook Minnesota; Thomas Bakk} offered a tax increasing solution to vote on.

A big part was a 2 billion dollar item called "Property Tax Recognition Shift".
Sounds a lot like "Payment In Lieu of Taxes" or PILT money.

It seems we're running a little short of slush funds these days.

It also seems that when the Government owns more property, then local property tax revenues drop.

I think encouraging private property ownership, or at least not referring to it as a "Threat", would serve us much better.

In the process of bullying through this tax bill on the last day before the Constitutionally mandated deadline, the Senate leadership ignored the Rules of the Senate, rules of parliamentary procedure, Roberts Rules of Order, simple rules of protocol, respect, decency, and democracy.

Just like in their elections, the DFL legislatures are patronizingly gracious winners and ruthlessly vicious losers.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Spring is Here. The Boats are Launched and the Legislature is Docked.

It has been a very busy two/three weeks for me. I worked the horse show at Hugo.

Usually during the summer I work just the horse shows here in Minnesota with some off time between for other things, but this year I have a regular job working at the double "H" stables / Haines Tree Service out of Stillwater.

It makes the Sunday end of show breakdown and cleanup day a lead in to a week at "HH". It is a little taxing and makes Monday long.

Yesterday Steve, Gary and I took the motorboat to the shop, we need to get the 135hp Johnson up and running.

We also have acquired a 28 foot pontoon boat and trailer. It needs some work. The deck needs replacement, the motor is shot, and the pontoons have a few dents.

But its twenty eight feet long and we will get it up and on the lake. It may have little power at first but it will have a gas grill.

We intend to launch it and anchor it as our flag ship. Then we can canoe and sail our other vessels around and also have a lounge area on the lake.

This is going to be great!

Changing the subject to give a little closure to the legislative session, the DFL at the last moment pulled out their plan - raise taxes. No one was surprised.

They seem to think that talking about trivial things till the last moment would jam the Governor to follow their lead.

They thought that they left him with the choice of signing on to their plan or force a government shutdown or a special session.

Bad assumptions by the big brains in the DFL.

The Governor was not moved by their tear soaked pleas to follow the words of Jesus and further empower the tax collectors. (How they got that interpretation, I still don't know.)

The Gov. vetoed their government employment plan and began taking charge of the States Budget and began line item "un-allotments" to balance the budget.

The typical and predictable wailing and gnashing of teeth commenced.

The press releases describing tales of woe and doom to come from this horrible action by the Governor have been issued constantly from all government quarters; State, County and City as well as all government subsidized enterprises and "non-profits".

We have been bombarded by threats that the “sky is falling” and other false threats for years.

All to induce fear in the populace to coerce them into following the DFL in there liberty thieving and tax guzzling ways.

It has worked for years.

But like Abe Lincoln (who died on April 15) says: “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.”

I think the “F” in DFL no longer stands for “Farmer”, but “Fool”.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

May in Minnesota

It is now the second week of May. Today is Mothers Day.

Here in Minnesota, the leaving of winter behind is now total, even though it is 30 degrees in International Falls.

The trees are leafing out, and the song birds are back and nesting. The clouds are racing by in front of a high pressure system bringing in bright, but cool Canadian air.

The first mowing of the year has been done in most yards and the tulips are opening brilliant red and yellow this morning. The coffee is perfect.

It is warming and this is one of the best canoe times of the year, no bugs yet. I'll be on the Saint Francis River meandering through parts of Sherburne County before it meets the Elk Rivers' trek to the Mississippi.

The Fishing opener was Friday and the Governor held his event just south of Forest Lake in White Bear Lake. I was in town and ate breakfast at the diner. It was a nice day but with a chilly wind and more clouds than blue sky.

In town, the large "workers rights" [communist] May Day parade at Powder Horn Park in Saint Paul had a float drive over an individual, nothing major but rather symbolic if you ask me.

In Saint Paul the legislature is now being compressed to the May 18 deadline and the demand for tax hikes is beginning to increase in pitch.

It is proposed by the DFL that we adopt a fourth income tax bracket, and raise all of the ones we already have.
This would make two of the highest income tax brackets in the nation exist here in industry crushing Minnesota.

Also they intend to raise taxes on alcohol consumers. The stuff for drinking, they still want to subsidies that intended for the gas tank.
[More irrational energy nonsense brought to you by the powerful environmental lobby.]

The tax-guzzling, special interest groups that live off of working Minnesotans are also making maneuvers for the new monies generated by the "legacy" amendment.

It was voted into law last election based on a false, fear mongering, tax funded, campaign that brow-beat Minnesotans into believing that our water was dangerously polluted and needed this additional remedy now.

To secure political support at the Capitol the so-called "sportsmen" joined with the so called "arts" lobby. They ended up splitting this new revenue stream and are giddy with new money, power and influence.

Watching such sycophantic and demeaning groveling and pawning by these groups and their members at the feet of these committee meetings, is embarrassing enough. To know that we are paying these people handsomely to behave so cravenly is more than a little disturbing.

Public Broadcasting here in Minnesota did well by their (our) marketing investment on behalf of the tax hike.

The Minnesota Film Board is angling for some of these "new arts dollars". They can be seen interviewed on "news" shows saying how a dollar they are given creates five in the economy.

They may understand lobbying and grant righting and all that, but they have a clear lacking in the understanding of basic economics.

Minnesota is vast and varied in terrain, vegetation and climate. There are advantages to making a movie here naturally. We do not need a "film board".

I don't think we need a department of tourism for many of the same reasons. Trust me, people will vacation in Minnesota without the MN Dept. Of Tourism.

They did before.

These closed-loops, that lobby for tax dollars with tax dollars, have contributed significantly to the unsustainable financial mess Minnesota and its industrious citizens are burdened under.

Things must change. Things will change.

Politically that is.

Minnesota will always be beautiful in May.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Green Bays' Jetsam Drifting to Minnesota.

There is much discussion lately around here in Minnesota, as well as amongst our neighbors to the east in Wisconsin, about the possibility of Brett Favre quarterbacking for the Minnesota Vikings.

Many people have been voicing strong opinions all around.

In Wisconsin, where the Green Bay Packers are the Government owned professional football team, they speak of betrayal and disappointment.

They also make taunting remarks usually about Superbowl victories and the possibility of Brett making it possible for the Vikes to actually win one.

In Minnesota most think Favre, although very talented, is past his prime.

I think most people, including the professional sport journalists, are not reading the data properly and are coming to wrong conclusions.

I do not believe that Mr. Favre has any intentions of the quarterback position with the Vikings.

I think Brett Favre is very possibly going to be on the coaching staff of the Minnesota Vikings.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Rally's for Tax Cuts

This weekend there will be a gathering of some friends of mine at the State Capitol in Saint Paul.

We have been meeting for many years now. I started having these little regular get togethers after the first billion dollar bonding bill well over a decade ago.

It was just a small group of us then. Myself, Colin my brother and Charles Test; then Chair of the Libertarian Party of Minnesota.

I reserved the steps at the Capitol, built the "lug-a-lectern" and the "port-a-podium".
We hauled them up the stairs, set up the works (with a sound system provided by C. Test), weighed it down with sandbags and cranked up the tunes.

I did the M.C. work for most of them.

Over time others who were there include then State Representative Phil Krinkie, Tom Workman, Todd Van Dellum, Kevin Knight, and State Senator Linda Runbeck and Carol Molnau, just to name a few.

There were lots of people you never heard of. Many helped in many little ways. Some fed me, some bought me gasoline or lunch. Ken Iverson gave me an old car of his when mine died.

These get togethers came to be called rallys.

Some were titled such as the "Give it Back", "Give it all Back" and "Tax cuts Now!" rallys.
Eric Escola of CBS came to refer to us as the "Give It All Back" crowd on "Almanac" and elsewhere.

Jesse Ventura spoke at one of our "Give it Back" rallys prior to his election as Governor. The pictures are funny in that I built the podium to fit me, at five feet seven inches. Needless to say Jesse Ventura is quite taller than that.

At least a year before that, house Speaker Steve Sviggum spoke. He had a great prop I helped him display, a very large pink porciline pig.

The crowd loved it and the photos are great.

Now these rallys are known as the annual "Jason Lewis" tax cut rallys.
You saw me lead the Pledge of Allegeance at last years "Tax Cut Rally".

(I and some others had a complaint sustained by the MN News Council from last years coverage by WCCO. Read my complaint here at; "Complaint to MN News Council")

I delivered the Pledge of Allegiance at the "Tea Party" on the 15th of April.

I am very happy with the momentum and support gained over these many years.

What started with three is now easily thirteen thousand strong, and growing.

I may not get the opportunity to lead us in the Pledge of Allegiance this year, but I don't mind at all.

It is nice to watch and not have to worry about making cues, setting lecturns and all the other incidentals I have done for all these years.

It is good to sit down and look back with satisfaction at the movements growth.

Hopefully we shall see our efforts bear fruit.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The End of a Cycle

I have been using the comparison of the Minnesota Legislature to that of a four cycle engine. You can read here the article "The Engine that is Minnesota"

We are entering the end of the compression cycle, approaching the power cycle.

The heat and temperature in the cylinder is increasing as the piston rises towards the engine head with a fuel and air mixture that is very rich.

The DFL members think its lean and are attempting to dump even more fuel into the gaping, tax guzzling, carburetor before reaching top-dead-center; and that hard end on May 18.

The way they drive the vehicle, and with all those odd attachments, and then tow everyone's stuff around; well there's no wonder why they cannot pass a tax station.

We used to have a budget year then a bonding year. [Before that, we meet every other year.]

These too seem to be combined, ending with a bonding every year now.

The engine that is Minnesota is overloaded, and many seem to think making a four cycle engine perform like a two cycle engine, with twice as many power cycles, is the way to go.

I think they are going to blow a head gasket and the engine is going to seize.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Minnesota Minning and Manufacturing No More

In 1902 in the little north shore town of Two Harbors Minnesota, five businessmen began what they thought was a venture to mine a local mineral deposit to be an abrasive on grinding-wheels. However the mineral deposit was found to be of little value (not corundum) and they moved to Duluth were they focused on producing sandpaper products.

This company was called Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing. Since then this little risky venture has blossomed into a multinational powerhouse with manufacturing, distribution and research facilities located worldwide.

Its headquarters once located in Saint Paul, is now in Maplewood Minnesota. I drive by the old large multi-building complex at least twice a month. It is still held in high esteem to work there.

Its been there my whole lifetime, so far.
They too have had some difficult times.

Sales of many of 3M's products have slowed during the last quarter, and its profits are reflecting that.

In France a company executive was held by striking workers at a factory expected to be closed.

Here in Minnesota we have been forcing them to chase phantom menaces on land used generations ago.

The executives have made clear the difficulty working in Minnesota with its high tax burden on the company and its employees.

3M announced some time back they would not be building on their aging Saint Paul campus.

And long before that they stopped referring to 3M as "Minnesota Minning and Manufacturing".

THE STATE is not friendly to anything having to do with "companies" or "minning" or "manufacturing". Today unlike times gone by, Minnesota is not "industry" friendly.

Nope, now its just 3M, period. Sad.

3M is selling its Saint Paul Campus to the Saint Paul Port Authority. It was the old headquarters before the move to Maplewood in the 60's. It will be leveled and the Port Authority will set it up for light industry and office space.

They, like other companies (and 3M is not just another company), are announcing layoffs and early retirements and buyouts for employees.

This will ripple throughout Minnesota. 3M is generous and always has been. They've built public buildings, symphonies, theaters, educations, hospitals.... the list of positives is very long.

3M has been a pillar of our society for over a hundred years.

However to me it seem that the McKnight Principle;

"As our business grows, it becomes increasingly necessary to delegate responsibility and to encourage men and women to exercise their initiative. This requires considerable tolerance. Those men and women, to whom we delegate authority and responsibility, if they are good people, are going to want to do their jobs in their own way.
"Mistakes will be made. But if a person is essentially right, the mistakes he or she makes are not as serious in the long run as the mistakes management will make if it undertakes to tell those in authority exactly how they must do their jobs.
"Management that is destructively critical when mistakes are made kills initiative. And it's essential that we have many people with initiative if we are to continue to grow."

....does not mesh well with THE STATES principle of centralized command and control.

3M appears to be leaving my beloved State of Minnesota.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Tornados, Paper Puppets and Public Broadcasting

This is Severe Weather Awareness Week.

Today the sirens will sound throughout Minnesota at 1:45 pm and 6:55 pm for tornado drills.

Last year about 5 miles south of my home in Forest Lake a violent tornado tore through the town of Hugo, about 5:00 pm on May 25, 2008.

I watched the storm approaching from the window on the second floor looking south. The sky was dark and menacing around 4:45 and my roommate with her three year old daughter were on the road just east of Hugo, attempting to drive home.

The wind was very strong and gusting, the clouds became a dark green, indicating hail, and I was very concerned for their well being.

I knew that I could get more detailed information from the public broadcasting system channel 17 Doppler radar display.

This is part of their "public service" on the "public airways".

I turned on the television. Boy was I wrong.

Instead of the crucial and timely information I was expecting to receive, I was frustrated to see what was being displayed was not the radar that the channel was established to provide the public, but a children's program called "Donna's Day".

Apparently the creation of paper bag puppets and "children friendly" broadcasting had eventually became the more important function of this Public Broadcasting Channel than the original reason given for the establishment of this additional TPT Channel. (Twin Cities Public Television... not Toilet Paper Television)

I called my roommate on her cell phone. She said she had stopped driving and was parked under a tree, seeking some shielding from the hail.

I could here the baseball sized hail hitting her station wagon and I could hear the child screaming in the background.

I was very frustrated in that I did not know the details of the storm and its track... Then the sirens started.

The private news stations were broadcasting information but I wanted more detailed, real time radar over some time to see the drift and trend of the storm. They showed the radar, but also more general storm related reports from throughout the region.

I told her to sit it out, if I knew more I would have told her to drive East.

Her windows were smashed, she barely made it home two hours later.

That tornado, an EF-3 with winds of 136 to 165 miles an hour tore into a Hugo housing development, destroyed dozens of homes and killed one young child.

The public broadcasting folks seem to think these channels are their own little broadcasting system. Useful to air their "green" programs, child "friendly" programing (that they say is unavailable on private TV stations), political reporting, and their behavior and thought modifying "educational" programs.

Once again the arguments made in the Legislature to justify these DFL projects are just, as the late Democrat Senator Daniel PatrickMoynihan called it, "Boob Bait For The Bubbas".

Rhetoric to placate the normal Minnesotan, that can be ignored later once the project is established.

Then they can do what they really intended, as normal folks don't have the time or inclination to follow up on such things.

The Radar Channel should be broadcasting the Radar data, if we wanted Laurence Welk we would borrow grandmas phonograph thank you very much.

TPT used to run with the phrase "If we don't do it, who will?"

I can get "Donna's Day" at the movie rental, thank you.

If you tell me and my fellow Minnesotans you need this channel and broadcasting equipment to provide radar data for public safety, then that is what we should be receiving.

Especially in the middle of a Tornado.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Norm Coleman, Being The Best Senator He Can Be.

The continuing saga that is the Minnesota Senate election is an interesting study in and of itself.

The recent ruling from the Judicial Branch of the State of Minnesota has brought us to the end of the latest scene in the drama.

The question raised by Norm Coleman is the non uniform way in which ballots (absentee) were treated by the eighty seven individual counties, and THE STATE.

He is appealing the ruling to the Minnesota Supreme Court.

Some years back, I had the opportunity to help a friend run for a State Senate seat vacated by the untimely death of the seated Senator north of the twin cities metro area .

I learned a lot about our elections and the agencies that "manage" these elections here in Minnesota.

No, we did not win and the results were totally of our own doing. No grudges anywhere and lots of new friends.

However, what I experienced from a customer/professional/business standpoint was the same as seen in most any other paper-shuffling government agency.

Very often overly-polite, officious and sometimes a little patronizing, the Government Desk-Set can be quite taxing in more ways than one.

They also love their job, and would like to keep it.

That alone supplies a great motivation to each individual that trends to an over-all "listing" away from anything that might possibly jeopardize their job, and obviously by extension, their agency.

Minnesota has very often led the nation in business, education, power, and politics.

I think we are leading the way again.

It is time for a total overhaul and restructuring of the Election process in the State of Minnesota and also on a Federal level.

I do not like the proposals put forth by Al Franken. I also find little to like from Norm Colman.

I do not like the fear-mongering environmental rhetoric and resulting policies coming from either of the two.

If you remember after the Wellstone tragedy, the DFL asked Governor Ventura to keep the seat empty until the election, out of respect.

He did too.

Then he attended the infamous Wellstone Memorial in the Hubert H. Humphy metro-dome. He walked out when his wife started crying due to the rude and insensitive way the DFL used it like a political club.

Democrats seem to have very little respect, considering how much they demand.

Then he appointed Dean Barkley to fill the Wellstone seat. (He has many odd notions too.)

The DFL seem to be a real classless bunch.

I am happy with the situation as it is now.

The longer we have a vacant seat, the more we prove Minnesota a truly national leader, rejecting the false choices offered by a failing system.

We can do better.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Carving Counties in Minnesota

Sartell is a happy little village straddling the Mississippi River about 75 miles upstream of Minneapolis. It has a dam and a paper mill that grew up with and alongside it.

It is named after Joseph B. Sartell who first opened a flour mill on Watab creek that flows in from the west, then opened Sartell Bros. Lumber Company.

Sartell grew up on what the French voyageur called, the "third rapids" up from St. Anthony falls.

It incorporated in 1907 and almost always had a Sartell on the city council till 1973. Ripley or "Rip" was Mayor when we moved into town in 1970.

My friends and I used to bike a distance downstream to "Rips" store and buy penny candy. I can still smell the place and hear the wood floor creak. It is gone now, the site is where the Riverboat bar and grill is now.

The old metal truss bridge is still right there just down stream of the dam, but it is not open for the public. The new bridge is downstream of that a couple of blocks.

Sartell on the Mississippi, is on the eastern border of Stearns county. It has also grown up on the east side of the river and therefore, on the west border of Benton county.

We lived on the west side of the river, in Stearns county.

Beautiful and bountiful, with rolling hills, lakes and trees, Stearns County Minnesota has been an agricultural powerhouse with dairy and grain leading a broad spectrum of husbandry. It is historic in many ways, from Holdingford 13 to Saint Johns College.

We lived in Collegeville for a short while. It's a tiny one road hamlet, upstream on Watab creek, lined by about 8 farms and 10 homes, just down the road from the 100+ year old University in the pines.

There was a world class artisan wood carver in town who made the most fantastic wooden doors.

We also had a railroad that ran right through town. Every once in a while a little yellow inspectors rail car would come down the line, and if you were lucky enough to be there when he did, he would stop and give you candy. A genuine nice railroad man.

This is also where I first heard Garison Keillor on the Radio broadcasting on KSJN from Saint Johns University.

Saint Cloud is about seven miles downstream of Sartell on the Mississippi River. It also has a hydroelectric dam, it generates 9 megawatts of electricity.

It owes a lot of its success to the tornado of April 14, 1886 that flattened the up and coming town of Sauk Rapids on the other side of the river, a real setback the town has never really recovered from.

Saint Cloud was named after the town in France and is the county seat of Stearns County.

It was a way station for the ox carts on the Red River Trail that ran between Saint Paul and the oldest town in the Dakotas; Pembina, on the other side of the Red River near Canada.

They would cross the Mississippi River in Saint Cloud or in Sauk Rapids.

Stearns County is the 14th largest county in Minnesota with almost 1400 square miles, it runs about 54 miles east to west and 36 north to south.

Cold Spring has one of the best bakeries in Minnesota, and one of the best granite quarries in the world. It had one of the best breweries.

Saint Cloud, the largest city in Stearns County, also straddles the Mississippi River. And also like the City of Sartell, and many others, it is in more than one county.

Three in fact. Stearns, Benton and Sherburne.

There are 87 counties in Minnesota and they exist at the discretion of THE STATE. One long time sitting Legislator has suggested doing away with counties altogether, concentrating power in Saint Paul.

Because of the size of Saint Cloud and the difficulties of dealing with three county seats for the city, some at the Minnesota Legislature are suggesting redrawing the county lines.

The opening suggestion is to draw a new boundary for a new county, to be centered on the City of Saint Cloud. The neighboring counties would adjust accordingly.

Wobegone County is the suggested name for this new addition to the Minnesota landscape.

This is not sitting so well with many.

In each of the counties the effect could be dramatic and the county commissions are pondering the impact of such a proposal on jurisdictions, voting districts, and tax revenue.

It is interesting to compare this to the issue with the City of Washington, District of Colombia.

The Nations Capitol City was carved out of three States and isolated politicaly to prevent undue influence.

Some now see what they think is a better way; Statehood for Washington, D.C.
I do not think that is a better way.

Saint Cloud and the three Counties may yearn for the old headaches if they trade them in for new headaches.

Sometimes the wiser way is not the way those in power would have you go.

Farmers Found Not Guilty of all Charges.

The Red River Drainage Basin is saturated and has just received another load of snow.

Over two feet in a wide swath, with ten inches of snow surrounding that bullseye and a large ring of six to eight around that one.

The tributary streams are iced, but melting.
Another blast of moisture is heading our way now.

The first crest on the Red River of the North has passed downstream, north of Fargo, however another crest is expected.

With this new input of water and the melting rivers it may exceed the last.

Unfortunately, it seems many here in Minnesota also feel that they should not let "a crises go to waste", and are spinning the situation to push there agenda.

While people have been sandbagging and are now struggling to clean up, the subsidized eco-lobby is pushing the notion that the floods on the Red River are due to farmers use of drain tile in the fields.

O- yes, and of course, Global Warming.

They also said that about the wind throw of July 4, 1999 that downed millions of mature trees over an area the size of Massachusetts in north Minnesota. That from "scientists" at the University of Minnesota.

This from the bunch that says we need good science and not politics directing our legislation. I could not agree more, I wish they would be more open minded to evidence and scientists that offer a different conclusion to these natural events.

Many of these skeptical scientists can be found at the Global Warming Petition Project.
(If you look you will also find a meteorologist here in Minnesota that replaced one who is a Carbonophobe.)

Keep in mind that drain tiles are only two to four feet deep on average, only drain the soil above them, and eventually degrade. The ditches they lead to are very flat also, and many are maintained by THE STATE.

Get the government out of the crop subsidy, ethanol and ditch maintenance business and many an acre would not see the plow. We should at the same time stop telling the farmer how to manage his property.

Many a pothole would be full of water. (how that prevents flooding I don't know, but it seems to be the belief of the eco-freaks.)

Drain tiles also have very little affect when the ground is frozen as very little water penetrates the frost and just pools up, eventually sprawling out as it meets other pools on this table-top landscape.

No, it is not the farmer or Global Warming to blame for the flooding of this north flowing stream on the flat bed of an extinct lake bed.

This is natural and not too unexpected over the long view.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Fools in April

It is April and the Minnesota Legislature has entered the compression phase of the session. (see previous post, "The Engine that is Minnesota")

Three of five months and still no budget deal, and the budget deficit of 5 to 7 billion is still unresolved as mandated by the Minnesota Constitution.

The DFL is pushing to increase taxes in numerous ways.

And in Washington D.C. the Democrats are pushing their tax and spend agenda. (There is no requirement to balance the Federal budget.)

Maybe it is time for an amendment to the U.S Constitution to require a balanced budget.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Ice Coated Arrowhead

The strong low pressure system that sucked the moisture laden air from warmer climes into our area has passed, leaving behind a wet muddy mess in the Red River Basin.

Less reported but just as impressive, it also left a wake of tangled branches, sagging trees and broken power poles in the Arrowhead region of Minnesota as it steamed on for points east.

Cook County (the county of my birth) covers the extreme northeast portion of the massive State of Minnesota.

It is bordered to the west by Lake County. The border line runs north and south in the woods between Cook and Lake county.

Bordering Cook County to the north is Canada, our good neighbor to the north. We are separated by magnificent boreal lakes; Knife, Saganaga, North, Pine, Fowl...

This Northern border of Cook County runs eastward from these cold lakes, following the Pigeon river as it falls through the piney woods, cutting into the Laurentian shield.

It eventually falls to the lowest point in Minnesota; 601'.

To Lake Superior.

This 1300' deep inland freshwater sea of gargantuan size, from glaciers only recently past, forms the southern border-shoreline for the region called the "Arrowhead" of Minnesota.

It ruggedly runs from Grand Portage, southwesterly for 120 miles and three counties to the zenith city; Duluth Minnesota. (It is the highest ocean-going port on the Lakes)

Way up at the northeast pointy tip of the arrowhead, Cook county also has the highest elevation in Minnesota. On Eagle Mountain at 2301 feet above sea level you can easily see the lowest point, Lake Superior.

That low pressure system that gave the spring flood to the Red River Valley, coated much of Cook County in ice, some as thick as two inches.

It was extremely pretty, but very heavy and was breaking branches, limbs and whole trees, large and small. Many trees were just leaning over from the weight of the glistening tinkling fairyland coating.

The sentiment that "...It was eerie, you could hear branches breaking all the time in the woods", was repeated by many.

Also many power poles, transmission lines and substations were damaged from the intense weight of the clear, frozen, ice coating as thick as your thumb.

Thousands were without power and many went into Grand Marais, Beaver Bay and Silver Bay to seek warmth and shelter.

The thickest coating was a few hill lines back from the Lake were it didn't have its' warmth. The Finland area and the substation there seem to have seen the heaviest coating of ice.

The heavy equipment is now out working on clearing roads and repairing power lines. The back roads will probably be seeing difficulties at least till fall, some maybe longer.

The northwoods of Minnesota are loaded with naturally felled and falling trees. They are falling around our ears, also evident by the massive BWCA blow-down of '99.

Minnesota forests are thriving. If allowed they could easily overwhelm us.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Flooding of the Minnesota River

There is a lot of rain falling.

Much of it in the very large drainage basin of the Minnesota River.

To understand the Minnesota River and its tributaries (and their very unique geography.)


I would recommend you go read the entire report and newsletters at The River Warren Research Committee {RWRC}

The only waterfall on the Mississippi River is in Minneapolis... The Falls of Saint Anthony, where the Mississippi River falls into the huge valley carved out of the countryside by the monstrous and now extinct Glacial River Warren.

(extinct rivers are identified by placing the word "river" first, before the name as in: "River Warren".)

All the tributaries of the Minnesota River (which lies entirely on the bottom of the big ditch dug by the River Warren) must fall some 200 feet to reach the Minnesota.

In the process they expend a lot of kinetic energy which makes for highly incised river valleys cutting into the glacial till, especially in high water events.

Look at the Cottonwood, Redwood, Yellow Medicine, Watonwan, Le Sueur, Pomme De Terre, Chippewa, Lac Qui Parle and all the other tributary streams to the Minnesota river. [and Mid-Mississippi for that matter]

All experience the big drop and are in steep valleys with highly erodible stream banks of glacial till and gravel.

The Blue Earth River is a very unique example, with FIVE sub-tributaries cutting inland and upstream, and coming together all at once at Mankato.

Read all about it at...

Due to their "underfit" nature at the bottom of the River Warren Valley, the Minnesota and the (middle) Mississippi River are naturally flood prone, sediment-laden streams with wildly fluctuating water levels.

The Mississippi has the Lock and Dam system which provides "flood-flattening".
In the fall/winter, water is released to allow room for the spring snowmelt and rains.

This lengthens the duration of, but reduces the level, of the crest.

Dams can prevent flooding, sedimentation, aid navigation and generate electricity.
They also raise property values along the riverfront with a more stable elevation MUCH less prone to large fluctuations.

Farmers are not the reason the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers flood, no matter what they tell you at the MPCA, DNR, Board of Water and Soil Resources [BWSR], Legislative Commission on Minnesota Resources LCMR, the Land Stewardship Project, or any number of Environmental Agencies and government fortified "non"-profit organizations.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Obamanomics comes to Minnesota

Here in the land of the loon, we have for many decades elected state representatives that push a ridged environmental command and control regime.

There is strict control of allowable actions on swamps, lakefront, woodlands, and prairies.

There is heavy regulation of lead, mercury, nitrate, phosphorus, particulates, ozone, freon and many other things.

We tax many activities to fund agencies and discourage certain behaviors.
We have many avenues for THE STATE to purchase property and remove it from private hands. THE STATE is the sixth largest property owner in the nation and they are buying more to remove it from a"risk of development".

Any individual or business interest wishing to expand must wade through a gauntlet of non-profit organizations all living to complain about something or anything.

As well as the many, many, many forms to be filed (with fees) and meetings to attend and planning boards to appease and "concerned" citizens opposing you at every turn.

And if you do reach the end of this money and time consuming trek, you can expect an increase in your tax burden.
If you improve your home, its your property tax; if business; that, as well as corporate tax and probably payroll as well.

(and you probably wont be able to park that unsightly R.V. or fishing Boat at home. The neighbors have concerns you know....)

Often times if you have a profitable operation going they will tell you to stop, or change greatly.

You make electricity?... stop doing it that way, you must do it this way. (even though its less reliable, less efficient, more costly and impractical).

Suppose you make industrial adhesive products, have for almost a century... now they sue you for the way you did things (legally) in the past.

Mandate lots of testing, inspection and remedial action for a problem that does not exist.

Makes jobs they say. Obama-jobs

A local bakery in Saint Cloud was fined for excessive emissions. (can't have that fresh bakery smell contributing to atmospheric pollution now can we.)

Often times, these fines are sent to some so-called non-profit organization that is trying to raise awareness of the despicable acts non-believing heathens like you are committing against the planet.
[Very often lying in the process...truth is the first casualty you know.]

You can understand why our tax base is shaky and corporations are not expanding... nor are lots of new ones popping up.
(Making real jobs.)

And the Minnesota Legislature is in session. Have been for some time. Over five thousand bills entered....

Still no budget resolution. Typical.

One of the big priorities of these Liberty thieving collectivists is global warming. To be combated by reducing Carbon emissions.

I will not go into the bad science this nonsense is based on. I will say that they are using this phantom menace to push some very controlling legislation.

There are many regulations and rules on the books now, based on global warming, that should be removed. Right now they are talking about capping automobile miles driven to 1990 levels (or some such silliness).

They think we need to reduce our travel to save the planet. The planet does not need saving.

Minnesota is also experiencing a budget deficit of about $7 billion and gas tax receipts are down.

So they are suggestion a mileage tax, and a test is in the offing with GPS units in some vehicles to track travel. [coming to a sub-sub-sub compact near you!]

(They also intend to raise the income tax, corporate tax, expanding the sales tax, re-instituting vehicle emission testing, and raising all kinds fees)

They could possibly limit the number of vehicles licensed or maybe limit the number of cars any one individual can own. Or maybe you will be filling in an odometer line on your tax form.

They are also pushing a bill to have all business's file a greenhouse gas emission profile of their operation.
(hmm. It says here you have TWO diesel don't really need two for that business plan you have submitted. And I see on this form that you haven't had the improved carbon sequestration pack that was mandated last year for all diesel engines. As long as we're at it lets review your truck fleet operation and repair forms.)

The enviro-governmental complex is strong, entrenched and ruling with an iron rod. They need to be challenged at every opportunity.

I think I am seeing some pockets of resistance forming, but the very many non-governmental organizations (NGO's)[non-profits] that are funded by government are flexing their muscle and will not relinquish power willingly.

Privacy is of no concern, nor is freedom to these puritanical zealots.

The Sierra Club and the DFL fear free people.

Smash coal, mandate wind. Smash cars, mandate bike trails. Smash freedom, mandate collectivism.

Green Jobs, Green Fuels, Green Education, Green Buildings, Green transportation, Green Government.

We will sacrifice human liberty to "save the planet".

The rights of individuals are being smashed daily by these peddlers of Obamanomics.