Letters to the editor from this week's Chronicle:

Dear Editor:
Peace Officers or Revenuers?
Based on recent experiences and observations, I can only conclude that we in America are moving ever closer to a military/police state.  
I am seeing more and more law enforcement, many in very expensive, even unmarked vehicles.  
At the same time that I hear and read about real crimes like burglaries and assaults, I see that our sheriff is using his peace officers to chase down violators of the invasive species inspection station near Kooskia.  
I also read about what appears to be an increase in what are sometimes referred to as "C.S." citations or pull overs.  "I need to see your papers," they say.  "Probable cause" could be perhaps a burned out tail light, or simply swerving to miss a rock in the road.  
A short time ago, I even had an experience out on Dworshak Lake.  My son and I were in my boat troll fishing, when pulled over by two sheriff deputies.  In compliance, we shut everything down, and one of the officers set about with his clipboard, recording my hull number, and checking for current registration, etc..  The second officer started the Q & A routine:  "What is your name,"  "Where are you from?"  "Show me your life jackets."  "Blow your horn."  "What color is showing on the fire extinguisher?"
I believe in safety, so please don't miss the point that I am trying to make.  The lake conditions were very hazardous at that time, with an extreme amount of floating debris, including logs, one of which we impacted on our return, damaging my out drive.  Some of my thoughts turned to these:  Could our tax dollars be better spent?  For example, instead of funding the survey that the aforementioned officers said they were conducting, it seems they might better have been doing the jobs that we actually hired them to perform, such as pursuing and preventing real criminal activity, or even simply working to clean up some of the hazardous conditions we encountered.     
Anyway, needless to say, that particular fishing day was not a very good one.  My boat is now broken for the season, but I was not defeated....not yet anyway, for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness must go on.  
So next, I invite a friend on a fishing trip to beautiful Deer Creek.  But before that fishing day was over - yes, you guessed it:  We're confronted by a gunned-up fish and game officer, driving a very expensive-looking vehicle, replete with a light bar on the top, and a four wheeler in the back.  Picture this, please:  The officer is wearing a military style uniform (along with a very intimidating attitude), and displaying three extra double-stack magazines for his sidearm.  I get the same demands again of "I need to see your papers" -  looking for more revenue, I believe.  
I see U.S. Forest Service, BLM, Fish & Game, and Port Authority officers everywhere, all of whom are now able to  issue citations, collecting revenue dollars.  Just who was it that authorized police powers for all of these agencies?   I don't recall voting for all the changes.  Taxation without representation?  Yes!
Thank you
Patrick Johnson

Redneck Review!
No. 172 - 8/6/18
Hey! It was kind of nice, commenting last week on the "Pause that Refreshes!" Purpose at that time was to get away from discussing the many negative things which we see in the daily news! And it would not hurt once again, to remind ourselves that we are the best fed people on this earth,  we are blessed with perhaps the best medical care anywhere, and we can claim to more freedom than any others around the world!  Constant pressure of people wanting to come here by the millions is proof enough for all three of these claims!
Though tempted to tackle irritating events that have grabbed my attention this week, it is a decision made here to take a completely different path!  One which might sound crazy!
But regardless, here it is! It is dawning more and more on me lately that I AM 81 YEARS OLD!  The unbelievable age of 81!  Arrived at that venerable age in June this year! Hate to admit it, but that means I am on the way to 82!  My wife and I are now the "Old Ducks" that sat behind us in church years ago!  Of course, my wife is not yet 80, but It is getting close, and will come sooner than expected!  And of course, we did not call old folks "Old Ducks,"
but I substitute the second word because I am not sure how to spell the actual word used!
But for you young folks out there, here is a bit of wisdom that you only can appreciate once you find yourself roaring past 60 and 70, finding all of a sudden that it takes the number 80, then 81, to record your age! It comes to my attention immediately that old Dr. Dick Orr, who delivered some of our children, and was a good friend with his wife to my wife and myself when we first came here, told us on several occasions, that life speeds up the older you get! Hard to believe when we were in our 20's, but certainly true now that we are here!
And another reminder was a video put together by our kids on my 80th birthday, put together professionally  by our picture taking daughter Shelley, and bringing together many old and memorable pictures of the past.  The music which accompanied the video included two songs which you really must listen to, to understand the impact they made on me!  The first entitled MY OLD MAN, and the second, LEAVE SOMETHING BEHIND, drove home the reality of the event we were celebrating!  The first, just how ancient this "old man" was really becoming, and the second, which nailed exactly projects I have been working on the past several years!
The projects?  Bugged for years by my kids and especially son Bruce to record places we had lived and things we had experienced, and with the help of "editor," cousin Bill Wren, a book recording these events was called A CAMAS PRAIRIE LIFE (Title suggested by Bill), and was first published in India by a company called POTHI, owned by a friend of Bill's. Since then an updated version of the book by the same name has been put on Amazon, again at
the suggestion of Bill, because of the cost and ease of obtaining, and is available there. Thus finished a first  attempt to LEAVE SOMETHNG BEHIND!
Since then to continue leaving SOMETHING BEHIND, a 52-page booklet has been printed and is available at the Chronicle, containing several articles I wrote and saved by my mother from articles in the Chronicle in the 1980's, entitled  LET FREEDOM RING. Also, by request made by a few, the first 50 of current REDNECK REVIEWS have been printed, and are also available at the Chronicle.  Later Reviews will be there also in the future, and another, a  
CAMAS PRAIRIE book entitled PROSE AND POETRY will soon be available on Amazon!
Jake Wren

Cottonwood, Idaho 83522


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