issue 62 – letters – self-reliance – preparedness – homestead

Letters To The Editor

From Issue #62


Drugs and guns

Just wanted to drop you a line and let you know I agree with you on your current editorial about drugs and guns.

Backwoods Home is a great inspiration to me and my family. Through it we have been making plans for the move to our 20 acres in the Texas Hill Country. Through the articles in your magazine we have been able to develop a plan of action for a self-sustaining homestead which will be developed over a five year period. Keep up the great work. God bless you and your family and staff.

Ron Flippo, San Antonio, TX

Hawaii

Thanks again for a great magazine! Just got my Nov./Dec. issue, (mail is a little slow to arrive where I am living). Enjoyed Skip Thomsen’s article on the Big Island of Hawaii. he is right on with his observations and information. However, being a former long time resident, I am compelled to add my two cents worth.

Before anyone jumps on a jet to move to the Big Island, please visit first. Several issues have lessened the quality of life there. One is the vog, when Kilauea volcano spills lava into the sea, the accompanying vapor cloud produces hydra-sulfuric acid fumes. This not only effects the finish on your automobiles and such, but if you or anyone in your family have any respiratory problems, it can aggravate those severely. The vog up until the past few months has been continuous for 14 years. If the winds blow it out to sea, it is not so bad, but normally the Kona side of the island is covered by a blanket of fumes.

Secondly, the continual flights of helicopters overhead, searching for marijuana in everyone’s backyard, are to say the least a major annoyance. The drug cops are so bold as to fly low and peer into the windows of your home. My wife has some nice photos of them trying to get a look at her while dressing one morning!

If they spot any growth, they either spray an agent orange type substance to kill the plants, or repel down and harvest the crop. Keep in mind, most home water supply in this area is by means of open air catchment systems. There are numerous reports from residents of ill side effects, on themselves, their livestock and anything they may be trying to grow.

Thirdly, since the all knowing Federal Government started their marijuana eradication campaign on the Big Island, the drug pushers have turned to selling crack. There is no serious effort being put forth to stop this however. So now, thanks to big brother, there is a very serious hard drug problem, families are being completely wiped out in this epidemic. It seriously breaks one’s heart to witness this!

My wife and I are trying to raise our six children the best we know how, and have moved lock, stock, and barrel to another small South Pacific Island. It is as Skip described the Big Island, without all the problems. Is it Shangri-La? No, but there is not Federal Government, no helicopters, Y2K does not exist, and the local law enforcement personnel have no need to even carry firearms!

Freedom is surely precious, the sacrifices we have had to make are many, but worth it? Absolutely yes! Well I have rambled on enough. Just remember, there is no paradise on earth.

Tim Missamore, Cook Islands

I would like to comment on the first “Places to Live” article in Issue 60, advocating the Big Island in Hawaii. I would like to see in these articles a thorough examination of issues important to freedom-lovers, such as whether a locale has unconstitutional laws restricting the right to keep and bear arms. According to “Safe, Not Sorry” by Tanya Metaksa of the NRA, Hawaii has quite restrictive firearms laws. “Assault pistols” are prohibited. Every person arriving in Hawaii is required to register any firearms brought into the state within three days of arrival. Handguns purchased from licensed dealers must be registered within five days. Hawaii requires a permit to purchase all firearms, with a 14 day waiting period after the application. A handgun purchase permit is valid for 10 days, for one handgun. A long gun purchase permit is valid for one year, for multiple long guns. Records of gun sales are reported to state or local governments.

Another example of anti-freedom restrictions is infringement on property rights and the right to travel associated with automobile ownership. Some states have mandatory vehicle safety inspections and/or auto emissions testing. The car must pass or the owner is unable to renew the registration. And if the cars need repairs, can the owners do it themselves? Oh nooooo! You don’t suppose they are trying to outlaw self-reliance, do you?

Other issues to consider: taxes, of all types: property, sales, income, estate. Also: zoning, building permits, inspections of homes and septic systems. Are composting toilets permitted? I have heard of one Ohio county that has banned cisterns.

Basically, what I am looking for is a place where Big Brother doesn’t live.

PS: If you decide to print any part of this letter, I would appreciate not being identified. Hey, why paint a bullseye on my back identifying myself as a dangerous “hate-monger” who has anti-authoritarian, anti-government views?

Joe Schmoe, Anywhere, OK

I think your article on Hawaii, specifically the Big Island, is way off the mark and could even prove dangerous to those of us outside the norm (Libertarians, Conservatives, rabble rousers and the sort.)

I spent about 2½ years in Hawaii while on military assignment (now thankfully over) a paradise, a wonderful, tropical, beautiful place, you would think—I suppose—but, in truth, there is a much darker side to the sun & fun. (Although I was only on the Big Island about a dozen times—It was for 20-35 days at a stretch.)…

For instance, while I was there, I went thru 2 hurricanes, 2 volcano eruptions that we had to evacuate civilians, and caused a chopper to go down, witnessed a shark attack by a Tiger shark 13½ ft long. And read about many more in the paper—(I think 5 in one season—not year) saw a murder, read about many more, been thru a couple volcanic earthquakes, my now ex-wife, transvestites by the truck load—and semi-legalized prostitution. Not to mention the locals Hate (read Hate) the White Devils from the mainland—(see Capt. Cook.) Also, one of the most liberal states in the union, that have been trying to legalize gay marriages for years! Not to mention a big Demonizer of guns & self protection—(Read—Pepper Spray Is Illegal to Carry!) (My ex-wife was detained for it believe it or not!) Oh, yeah, I almost forgot to mention that it rains a lot, it gets cold as hell on the Big Island at night, especially in their winter season—and I sprained my ankle really bad once too! Just thought you should know.

Michael Shaum, Elkhart, IN

Cement floor help

I want to put a wood floor over my cement basement I live in so it will be warmer and not so hard to walk on. Can you help me out here. I know 2x4s will have to be put down before the overlayment. Is there some foam strips or something that can be put between the 2x4s for more warmth?

Dorothy Lemmerhirt, Red Wing, MN

I converted a garage into an apartment about 10 years ago, and part of the conversion involved putting a wood floor on top of the concrete slab. Two by fours, turned on edge, with regular fiberglass insulation in between, worked fine for warmth. On top I put plywood, the best quality pad, and a rug. — Dave

U.S. Constitution book

Enclosed is $3 for pocket size copy of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.

The last time I have seen anybody urge citizens to read and have a copy of the Constitution and its amendments was on the album jacket cover of the old Frank Zappa record LPs bought 30 years ago.

Charles Arnold, Amityville, NY

Glad you like it. We’ve sent out 7,000 copies of it so far. — Dave

Evolution article (Issue 61)

We have been subscribing to BHM for a year and intend on renewing for another year. My wife and I enjoy the magazine a great deal and find the self-sufficiency articles very beneficial. We even enjoy the Libertarian commentary. However, I did not subscribe to your magazine for science articles (and we do homeschool) and think that the space could be better used at what you do best, self-sufficiency. Yes, we strongly disagree with evolutionary ‘science’ and won’t be using it to teach our children, but that is not the issue. Homeschooling material can be obtained elsewhere but good how-to material is hard to come by and is something in which your magazine excels. I appreciate the new ideas in the magazine and encourage you to continue.

Mick Bosworth, Longview, TX

I stand here with egg on my face. I sent two gift subscriptions of your (usually) fine magazine to dear Christian friends of mine. If you are purposely trying to offend your Christian readership then congratulations, I think you’ve succeeded. Please be a little more sensitive next time in your choice of homeschooling subject matter. Stick to true science and not evolutionary THEORY. There must be a bizzillion other subjects you could have chosen to explore. It’s this kind of junk science that causes parents to pull their children out of public education in the first place.

VardjanM@gethealthnet.com

I know it looks like you put a lot of work into this article, but I am grieved at your presentation of this conjecture as fact and something to use for educational purposes, especially in the mainly religious environment of home schooling. Please use your heads! You are creating many enemies of your publication with this most recent mailing. I will give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you did not have any evil intentions while putting this to press. You certainly must be good hearted people for giving us a decade of very useful information, and I believe the unfortunate poor in our society have benefited greatly with the many cost cutting ideas provided. The fact is though, God created the heavens and the Earth. Exactly how He did it, besides the word of His mouth, I do not know, and I do not believe that science will ever conclude how. That is why God requires faith. I was not there, nor was anyone who has ever claimed to know by “scientific evidence” how the foundations were laid. Consequently, I would greatly appreciate a statement in your next magazine to declare this outrageous article of speculation as just that, speculation. I also pray that faith in God would become your premise for presenting what is truth and what is a lie.

Jeff Gray, Gettysburg, PA

If every reader out there wants their favorite magazine to reflect their views and beliefs and nothing but their views and beliefs, then no wonder there is not another magazine like BHM on the market. Pro-government leftists, environmental Nazis, and the politically correct Gestapo crowd all hate BHM because we have stated things they disagree with.

We don’t mean to create enemies, and this magazine has been far more friendly toward Christian beliefs and values than almost any other magazine I can think of. Seven Christians are among the 10 people who staff this magazine. Four of the seven believe in creation, while two believe in evolution; the seventh believes either theory is consistent with the Bible. None of these Christians has become my enemy as a result of this article; they are as tolerant of me as I am of them. — Dave

Jokes, religious editor

Just was reading this issue’s (#61) Letters, and I felt you might want to hear some different points of view—

1. We LOVE irreverent joke page. Maybe not all of it is hilarious, but then only 6 out of 10 jokes heard any given week are even mildly funny, so your percentages aren’t too bad!

2. The person trying to get hired as religious editor gave homeschoolers as one of the reasons you might need a religious editor. The flight from the public schools may OFTEN arise from religious reasons, but I would say by no means ALWAYS, or not even mostly. The conservative religionists are so loud in the homeschooling movement that the rest of us, who homeschool out of a combination of other factors including quality education, depth, ethics, and just plain love, get a feeling we might be burned at the stake if we suggest these other reasons…

So I hope you don’t feel pressured by loudly stated opinions!

Janet Leake, Lebanon, WI

Regarding the letter from Michael Briggs on pg. 88 Jan-Feb 2000 on having a religious editor—if anyone wants to get religion, go to church or read the bible. If anyone is so hard up for information or inspiration for their religion that they must come to BHM, I suggest much better sources are available.

Keep religion out of Backwoods magazine. It is bad enough to hear the presidential contenders (both Democratic and Republican) ass-kissing Pat Robinson and Jerry Falwell. Just don’t go there. Give us useful information and leave religion where it belongs—in church and with the individual. To each his own belief. You have no business getting into religion of any kind. If you decide otherwise and go ahead with religious articles, please cancel my subscription with the first one. I’ll say a prayer that you are wise enough to leave religion where it belongs…

Frank Summers
serndip@aol.com

Don’t worry. There’ll be no religious editor. — Dave

I just ordered your big Christmas offer (trilogy & subscription). I picked-up a copy of your mag., first time ever this month. What a great magazine! Thanks for having the courage to run your politically incorrect jokes. My wife and I really got a chuckle.

Keith Cutter
keithcutter@fotogallery.com

New York Times

Thought that you’d like to know that there was a recent article in the New York Times that implied that Backwoods Home Magazine is a haven for Y2K wackos, citing some of the advertisements, but ignoring the articles and editorials. I found it amusing because in the same issue of the Times, they also had their share of Y2K advertisement. I guess that one whizzzzed right past them.

You guys are the best. I can’t wait until the next issue comes out. My wife and I each compete to see who can get to the magazine first and read it before the other. It could be a new game. It is a lot of fun, especially if you win!

William M. Bell, Jr., Bellaire, TX

Nice to know such an influential paper takes note of us. Usually the liberal media pretends publications such as BHM do not exist. We must be making people nervous. — Dave

Solar system article (Issue 60)

Your story in BHM “How big is the solar system” is a winner, thanks. If I could write I’d have come up with something like that. While astronomy is a passion of mine, writing is something I have never done and really wouldn’t know where to start.

Bob Johnson, Cape Canaveral, FL

Self-sufficiency

Enclosed is $5.00. Please send me issue #55. It’s not that I’m interested in “doom & gloom” it’s that I’m interested in simple solutions toward self-sufficiency hope this issue contains many.

My spouse & I live simply & comfortably here in the city on around $8,000 a year for both of us. The federal 1999 poverty rate for two is $14,378. What’s the big deal! We made our last house payment when I was 33 yrs. old. I refuse to live in debt. We buy basic transportation new for cash & drive them ’til they die, presently owning a 10 yr. old “econo-box” and an 8 yr. old truck. I diligently keep track of every cent coming in & leaving. This helps immensely to keep down unnecessary expenses. Been living this way for around 16 years, fine tuning constantly. There are many pros & cons of city living—the cons being the almost constant noise & the umbilical cords: gas, electric, water, phone & cable TV for the spouse. I hate them bills! To me “the land of the free” also means more self-sufficiency. I would much prefer less house, more land & more control. It’s the spouse I have to accommodate who prefers flipping on switches—the furnace, the A/C, cable TV, the VCR, long hot showers & the conventional wasteful flush toilet. (One of my most favorite books is THE HUMANURE HANDBOOK. How low-tech!) What a waste of resources. I could live so much more sanely and comfortably in a passive solar super insulated sound-proof home off the grid. It doesn’t cost to dream! My escapism is reading material on low-tech self-sufficiency, buying some for my reference library and using the public library. I get high on low tech! The washer died five years ago. Sold it (for scrap metal). Haven’t replaced it. Never will, hand washing is almost a spiritual experience for me. Especially the line-drying part.

Thanks & hope you don’t mind reading my letter. I’m trying to keep the art of letter writing alive in this age of high-tech everything. No computer in this house—just low-tech basic lead pencils picked up when walking—along with clothing, money, gold rings & other goodies disposed of by this wasteful society.

Sandy Davis, Grand Rapids, MI

Applause

I had always, along with my friends and family, considered myself to be a pretty odd sort of person. After all, what “normal” person would give up a perfectly good cell, uh, I mean condo. To go grub it out in the dirt and bugs? Not to mention lions and tigers and bears (oooooh my). I once told my mother that my idea of a dream date would be the kind of gal who could show me the proper method for turning fresh roadkill into jerky (she thought I was joking). This kind of thinking doesn’t endear one to city folk. It’s ok, they tolerate me and hush the children when they say rude things about “wierd uncle Sonny”. Well, anyway, after nearly 30 years of procrastination, wrong turns, trials, errors, and deals gone bad, I’m finally on the threshold of realizing my lifelong dream, having just acquired a nice little piece of mountain property, which I intend to homestead. Two days after the seller accepted my offer, I chanced upon a magazine in a convenience store. “Hmmm, Backwoods Home Magazine. Well I’m not all that far out of town, but I guess that’s sort of what I’m doing.” So, I leaf through this magazine, and my entire world view is shattered! I mean, it stands to reason, (doesn’t it?), that if they go to the trouble to publish the magazine that people must read it, right? And if people like to read this kind of stuff, there must be a whole bunch of folks out there who think a lot like I do! Maybe I’m not such an oddball after all! There could be dozens, maybe hundreds, who knows? maybe even THOUSANDS of people I could be really good pals with! I might even have to learn “How works a computer” so I can do the e-mail thang! Well, anyway, after having perused no less than two issues of your wonderful magazine, I pronounce Backwoods Home to be the finest publication on the face of the earth, and will brook no steenking argument to the contrary. I can think of several times I would not have had to go without my “Din Dins” had I been a subscriber. Where have you been all my life? But hey! what’s all this Libertarian stuff? My impression, gathered from what I see in your magazine, is that the general idea is to try to salvage what lucid thinking the Republicrat-Demopublicans have done, throw out the silliness and nonsense, mix in a double helping of Liberty and Justice for all, then tell Big Brother to go to his room, and stay there until he can behave himself in polite company. If that’s a fair description, ok, I’ll bite. Where do I learn more?…Hey, about this survivalist thing. Doesn’t everyone want to survive? Is anyone going to seriously tell me that all those Jons’ and Janes’ Doe out there are going to throw their hands in the air, soil their trousers, and rush out to hang themselves when faced with the prospect of a society and/or government unable for the moment to dish up their daily bread and circus? Hah! I think if far more likely that in about ½ a heart beat they’ll turn buccaneer and start marauding those who prefer an insurance policy composed of material goods and tools rather than one of green paper. If I choose to accept some measure of direct responsibility for my continued well being and prosperity instead of entrusting it entirely to strangers in Washington D.C. and New York City, am I a survivalist? Well than, I guess I’m a survivalist or whatever. I wish people wouldn’t talk crazy.

Sonny Lee Johnson
Saint George, UT

I received my first issue of Backwoods Home, Nov./Dec. issue, and have not put it down…read cover to cover the first few days. Now I page thru it daily…it’s looking like my old Playboy mags after searching for the nudes.

Wayne Mack, Young Harris, GA

I am one of your many subscribers who does actually live “off the grid.” My husband and I retired this past August to our home deep in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. It’s 34 miles to the nearest town. I will readily admit that when your magazine arrives I read it cover to cover—nearly every word of it. This past hunting season we got our first elk and tanned the hide, with the help of your informative article from the Nov./Dec. 1995 issue. I just have one comment about a remarkable error I noticed in the Jan./Feb. 2000 issue. Bear in mind that you seem to have been doing your best to keep the “panic” out of the Y2K fiasco. So this typo was especially humorous to me. On the “Publisher’s Note” page in the front of the magazine, you announced that you’ll draw one more winner of a complete set of back issues of Backwoods Home Magazine, and that the drawing will be held January 5, 1900! Boy, will people ever be confused now!

And by the way, I was totally amused to see that Old McDonald is employed by you as a computer consultant.

Keep up the good work—you seem to be having fun, and you’re certainly filling a void out there.

Sally Oster, Jasper, CO

Thanks Sally. We do have our clever jokes strewn throughout the magazine. — Dave

I know you probably hear it often enough, but I simply wanted you to know that you produce an outstanding magazine (and web site) that has proven inspirational to me. I’ve had to purchase all of the anthologies to get me through between issues.

I like your opinion and the edge it gives to the magazine. I am also a great fan of John Silveira and the all knowing O.E. MacDougal. If you ever get rid of John, I may just cancel my subscription. I marked his articles in the anthologies and my grandmother loved the ones about the First Ladies.

After reading some of the articles (beginning with the cooking ones and moving on to Silveira’s history lessons), my wife has even stopped rolling her eyes when she sees me reading it.

John Titgemeyer
Mississauga, Ontario

I live in a NYC apartment, and have been looking for information on food gardening on my balcony. The information has been almost non-existent; until I found Nancy Wolcotts article today on the website. Praise Goddess!

The article was so packed with useful information that I believe that I can finally realize my dream of balcony-grown fruits! Please let Nancy Wolcott know how great her article was. It’s also nice to see that your magazine, while titled Backwoods Home, has information that even city dwellers like me can use.

Sonia Roman, Sonia@brandwise.com

After shamelessly having rooted through your website (backwoodshome.com), downloading articles with almost maniacal glee, I subscribed this past month to your magazine. I simply had to, your publication is just to valuable to not support. The magazine’s practical articles and commentaries are both stellar in quality.

Glenn C. Joseph, Jonesboro, AR

Only last summer I was introduced by a friend to BHM, and fell instantly in love with it. Here at last was a forum for people like me: responsible, independent, liberty-loving individuals. After thoroughly reading several issues and finding each article interesting and informative, I have decided that I just can’t take the risk of missing an issue, as they quickly sell out at the local bookstore; yours is far superior to the competition (articles about $8,000.00 50 cal. BMG sniper rifles are interesting, but I’m a bit more practical-minded).

So, after much debate with the penny-pinching, miserly side of my personality, I have decided to treat myself with this Christmas gift. My best friend and I—convinced for years that our views were of a minority and viewed by most as rather radical—have jokingly referred to ourselves as “paranoid-schizophrenic paramilitary gun nuts”; It’s a great relief knowing we’re in such good company.

Darrin Lehman, Rantoul, IL

I have recently bought your magazine and think that it is one of the best I have read. I wish that I could have known about it sooner. I am retiring from the U.S. Marines on Christmas eve., and plan spending the rest of my life in a tranquil situation. I have served 22 years and am ready to settle down from the fast and complex life of the military. I grew up in Townsend, Massachusetts and at the young age of eighteen decided to see the world. I can tell you from my true life experience that there is nothing like the good OLE U.S.A. Your WEB site was great and I have recommended it to many of my friends. You can be sure that I will be on your mailing list next month.

Will Bergeron
bergeron@wna-linknet.com

I believe yours is the best magazine I’ve read so far. I enjoy almost every article. I’ve just extended my subscription. I also ordered two Anthologies, two other books & your pocket-sized copy of the Declaration of Independence & the U.S. Constitution.

But after 20 hrs. of being awake I messed with the math so I’m sending 2 dollars with my money order to make it up.

Something I’ve been wondering is if you have ever written an article on Icehouses. I don’t remember if you did or not but if not, I’m sure some people may enjoy it.

Bruce Ellis Jr, Muskegon, MI

Never did an article on an icehouse. Anyone out there want to write it? — Dave

I really enjoy reading your magazine, and am very glad you continue to publish such quality articles. You are truly helping to preserve knowledge from the past that is precious, and may become critical to the survival of many of us.

I am not a subscriber, but my boss is! I have the privilege of reading his copies—I file them, of course, so I can read them when I’m on break or at lunch. He allows me to borrow back issues, too, and I really appreciate it.

Recently I was browsing through his copy of the Best of the First Two Years of Backwoods Home Magazine, and saw a portion of a rhyme printed there, on page 100, from the February/March 1990 issue. It is printed as a shaded inset. No title is given, but I know the title!—and I know the rest of the poem. I had to memorize it for recitation in the third grade back in Foosland, Illinois in 1950! (I’ll be 57 in October so I guess my memory hasn’t completely failed me yet.) Here is how the whole thing goes, in case any of your readers might enjoy it:

ELETELEPHONY

Once there was an elephant, Who tried to use the telephant…
No, no, I mean en elephone, Who tried to use the telephone…
Dear me, I am not certain quite, That even now I’ve got it right.
How e’er it was, he got his trunk, Entangled in the telephunk;

The more he tried to get it free, The louder buzzed the telephee…
I fear I’d better drop this song, Of elephop and telephong!

Keep up the good work. The country needs you, even though most of the people don’t know it yet! Do you think there could be riots and fist-fights over back-issues of Backwoods Home Magazine once the general public realizes its need for basic living instructions? (Smile.)

Bess Huber, Arlington, KY

I just wanted to drop you a quick note letting you know how much I appreciate the way you do business. About a month ago I sent you an email stating I did not receive an issue of your magazine. Within 1 week I was sitting in my chair reading the missing issue. When it came time to renew my subscription, I mailed my check and figured I would not see the little book on the Declaration for the standard 4-6 weeks. Within 10 days I was reading it!!!!! Great job, guys. Keep up the good work. If only all businesses were as great to work with as you.

Suzie List, JBL1518@aol.com

Treasure of articles

You are creating a treasure of articles about how to deal with the reality of the actual world. Too many of us who live in cities have no idea what is really real and how we really live on the efforts of others who give us everything we have. We seem to think that we make the things we use by our efforts that make the money that we spend to buy those things.

The reality of our lives is that we do nothing but consume and those people who grow our food, make our furniture, process everything that we use, and provide other services are the people who really live and experience life like it was supposed to be.

I think your magazines and anthologies are truly a treasure of how to live life. In that vein, I would like to see some articles that are generated by someone interviewing the old-timers who have done it all. Illustration should accompany this type of article. (By the way, your illustrations have gotten much better since the early days. They are bigger, more complete, and there are more of them.) I know this sounds like the Foxfire series but surprise!!, this is what your magazine is—a wonderful and more complete fulfillment of the Foxfire series. I really have a desire to see articles about interviews with old people who know how to do some of these things smoothly and as a natural part of life. So many things that we don’t value right now are still valuable and can make our lives much more full.

Thanks again for all your efforts and care in putting out such a difficult magazine. I will never stop subscribing to it as long as you adhere to your original goals.

Mike Briggs, wmbriggs@gte.net

Doom & gloom preparation

Enclosed $2 for the “Doom & Gloom” issue of your magazine, as advertised on KSWM, Aurora, MO. Besides being an eagle scout, I taught survival to the 58th Strat. Rec. at Eielson NR. Fairbanks during the Korean flap.

As I have no interest in spending my final years in a senior care facility, playing bingo, cards & line dancing, I’m building an efficiency apt., all concrete, including the roof, with lots of steel reinforcing, so I won’t have to worry about tornados, fire, or baseball sized hail. Though I have a good mixer, and have long patronized Kay Concrete Company, I’m mixing in one of my wheelbarrows, so I’m in better trim than many 1/3 my age. Will skip the modern amenities like A/C, the lousy TV, and live like my ancestors did in Albany, NY over 200 years ago. Heating in part will be done by Fresnel Lenses focused on heavy pieces of steel. Thanx for the mag.

Carl Vroman, Monett, MO

US Man and Biosphere program

. . . I appreciate in particular the “Think Of It This Way” columns. They have served to educate me greatly on the Constitution and the Libertarian party. Like many people I know, I believe that the two dominant political parties have long since ceased to serve the American public in the proper manner, and I find myself increasingly angry at what they’re doing in an effort to protect us “wayward, ignorant children.” I feel that your magazine is a great asset to any person who loves this country and values his/her freedom. Thanks to you, I have been awakened to what is really going on out there, for you have alerted me to many things that the larger national media ignore.

One thing that I would like to bring up at this time is the US Man and Biosphere program (US MAB). I don’t know if you’re aware of this or not, but I am because it is affecting us locally.

Basically, the US MAB is part of the larger UN program which sets aside certain lands which they term World Heritage Sites. Ostensibly, these sites are to be part of a conservation program, but what they apparently really do is evict people from lands on which they live. These Heritage Sites have several different zones in them, and one called the Core Zone cannot be used in any way by humans. One of these groups recently visited Yellowstone and the end result was that a gold mine that was to operate six miles outside the park was prevented from being opened. And this was a company that had already spent millions of dollars cleaning up the results of previous mining efforts. Camping areas were to be severely cut back inside the park, and several property owners were to be bought out to increase the “buffer zone” surrounding the park.

And in 1993, President Clinton signed a treaty which would have set aside the entire United States as a biosphere, with over half of it set aside for wilderness Heritage Sites of varying use.

Perhaps this may sound like an overblown conspiracy theory, but there are various websites dedicated to educating the public as to the true aims of the UNESCO program and its US “subsidiary.” One in particular, http://www.cafes.net/mo/un.htm, gathers most of the information available together in one convenient site and provides links to back up what they say. . .

Gil Miller
kntutanka@yahoo.com

Long lasting insoles

If you want your insoles for your shoes or boots to last almost forever, just do what I did.

First I went to the K-Mart store and bought a pair of Dr. Schools—(or Dr. you know who)—Extra Cushioning insoles with sure-grip foam (2 x the cushioning) costs about three bucks.

Next I carefully cut the pattern card they give you one boot at a time because your feet aren’t always the same size. Don’t forget to mark them left and right. Now, lay them on the insole silk side up and trace around them with a ball-point pen and cut them out.

The secret miracle part is to go to your nearby fabric store and buy a couple of feet (no pun intended) of naugahyde. I promise no nauga’s will have to die for this step. There I go again. I bought the black, it resembles thin-shiny leather on one side and white fabric on the other. Don’t be deceived, this stuff is tough. Lay the size pattern on the white side and cut them out. Now you have insoles all over the place.

You then lay a piece of waxed paper on a flat surface in case of a glue spill. Lay down the factory insole, foam-side down against fabric side up and smear with an even coat of glue from a tube of glue-all.

Then lay the shiny black surface of the naugahyde onto the glue, leaving the white side up.

The last step is to put one more sheet of waxed paper on top of your insole, sandwich and place something fairly heavy on top. Steady as she goes.

Let this set-up overnight. Next day, slide them into your boots and take off. If the fit isn’t snug enough, put a felt insole beneath our custom insole.

Thanks for such a good magazine. Keep going, never stop and don’t look back.

P.S. I took this newly constructed article next door to see what my neighbor thought of it. After I had pried a newly opened brewski out of his meat hook with a large screwdriver he started reading. When he had finished reading, he wadded everything up and threw it across the table.

“That’s your trouble he said,” if people ask you what time it is, you tell-em how to build a watch. You could have said this whole thing in two paragraphs.”

I told him, “You’d push little chickens in the creek,” and he said, “There’s nothing running around here EXCEPT the creek.”

As I helped myself to one more brew he said. “Why don’t we just manufacture the damn things and make ourselves rich instead of this Dr. Whoever?”

I said “It might take a little work,” and he said, “If you’re gonna cuss around here you can just hit the road.” As I stepped off the porch I heard his head hit the table. So much for critics.

H. Bruce York, Camano Island, WA

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