View Full Version : Are "WE", OHV'ers, LEADERS or FOLLOWERS?

Sandee McCullen
07-12-2006, 03:06 PM
This a bit "lengthy" but it's worth every minute it takes to read. It represents a lot of what WE are allowing our government leaders to do without us being stakeholders in our country leadership and our rights!!! If we continue to sit back and let the "other guy" do for us we stand to lose a lot more.................... our "CHOICE OF RECREATION" is definitely on the top of the list.

PLEASE get involved........................ ask questions, write letters, join groups to help you, .............. don't be a follower. Be a leader!.......... it's your right!



Up until 35 years ago State agencies that were responsible for all the wild
animals in the State had a robust variety of names. "Fish and Game",
"Fisheries Commission", "Conservation Department", "Game & Fish", "Wildlife
and Parks", "Game, Fish and Parks", "Department of Game", "Resources
Department", "North Carolina Wildlife",

"Department of Natural Resources", and "Game and Fresh Water Fisheries" were
examples of the various expressions of individual States' notion of the
mission of these agencies. Often when I was Federal Game Agent in those
days, rural folks called each of us (Federal and State, officer and
biologist) "The Wildlife".

Up until 35 years ago such State agencies represented the Constitutional
authority of State governments over all wild plants and animals in the
State. Exceptions to this authority were migratory birds named in
international Treaties and therefore under Federal jurisdiction and plant
and wildlife matters that involved interstate commerce or importation into
or through a State. While these State agencies were financed by license
sales and permits for hunting, fishing, and trapping; they also shared in
the Federal excise taxes collected on arms, ammunition, fishing tackle, and
other items like bows and arrows.

Up until 35 years ago such State agencies worked directly for the elected
representatives of the government of their State and were thereby
accountable to them and the voters of the State that elected them. This
role was bolstered by the Depression-era requirements in the Excise Tax law
that all revenue generated by hunting and fishing and all property and
revenue under the auspices of the State agency had to stay under that agency
and be used for "wildlife" management and restoration. While there have
been occasional scandals, dedicated State employees or informed hunters that
made midnight phone calls to the residences of concerned Federal employees
with integrity (that also hunted and fished) always resulted in audits,
payback, and chastened State politicians and State bureaucrats.

No more.

35 Years ago everything changed.

35 years ago the Federal government "climbed in the sack" with radical
animal rights organizations and extremist environmental organizations. They
colluded in the acquiescence of the Federal government to sign a UN
Convention that (unbeknownst to everyone but these early schemers) gave the
federal government the legal authority to pass an Endangered Species Act
that not only allowed Federal intrusion on any tiny biological portion of
any plant or animal and any imaginary "necessities' for it but also the
unlimited "taking" (by the Federal government) of private property not only
not for a "public purpose" but indeed without compensation. Other related
Federal laws were invented during this period of environmental and animal
rights hysteria. Federal hegemony over and complete non-management and
non-use of all marine mammals was claimed under the Marine Mammal Protection
Act. Federal hegemony over all wild and domestic animal's "welfare" (sit
down, this is true - A judge just said sea lion research couldn't be
conducted because the researcher couldn't prove it wouldn't be "CRUEL" and
right now rats and mice [bye-bye medical research] and even racing pigeons
are being swept into the maw of the ever-growing Federal Animal Welfare Act
that will soon include all dogs and cats as well as all domestic animals) is
everywhere in spite of denials at passage of ever doing exactly what it is
doing today. Federal Wilderness designations grow in size and number while
Roadless Areas, road closures (from trails and county roads to State
highways) on Federal lands are paired with Nature Conservancy easements,
radical Wildlands strategies, and a host of Federal inventions from
Landowner Incentive Program payments (complete with "requirements) and
Scenic River designations to Scenic Highway designations and Sanctuaries
(like the recent Marine Sanctuaries that eliminate fishing and boating to
"save" things - the questions are "what?" and "for who?"). State fishing
license sales decrease as fish populations are not restored or actively
managed and hunting license sales decrease as game are allowed to disappear
into Federally introduced and protected wolves and grizzly bears that are
killing people too. Cougars expand their territories and numbers
dramatically as hunting and controls are discouraged at every opportunity by
State agencies despite local objections. But where were the State agencies?
Where were the State politicians? Where were the Federal bureaucrats that
were the "guardians" of the millions of dollars doled out to state agencies
each year for "wildlife and sport fish restoration"?

During the past 35 years the Federal government employees got "green".
Civil Service "Reform", race and sex preferences, and political intrigues
(to be honest, nearly all by Democrat politicians and appointees) to replace
the large retiring post World War II and Korean War veteran employees with
permanent employees committed to the ideology and philosophies of
environmental/animal rights socialist-oriented government was a "success"
for the radicals. The elimination of entry exams and grading and promotion
requirements paired with radical political appointees hiring and promoting
fellow travelers and reeducating and cleansing "reactionaries" (anyone know
a better term?) to bring this about was effective. The laws and policies
cited above grew the power, budgets, grades, and pensions of Federal
bureaucrats and helped reelect numerous politicians. They grew the net
worth, power, and status of the radical and extremist organizations,
University professors, and steadily preempted the rights and liberties and
traditions of one group of Americans after another but never too many at one
time so as not to create a large opposition at any one time. While all this
was wild success for these folks where were the State agencies and
politicians that many of us still thought were "looking out for us" and
"hunting and fishing and wildlife managements"?

For the first 20 years of this infamous 35-year period, the Federal US Fish
and Wildlife Service dumped their Animal Damage Control employees over into
the US Dept. of Agriculture and then set about "Listing" every imaginable
group of plants and animals and even forcing back abundant worldwide species
like wolves over State (meaning hunters and ranchers and dog owners)
objections. Attempts were made to convert National Wildlife Refuges into
"Native Ecosystems" instead of the waterfowl habitats they were purchased or
set aside for. Non-hunting and non-fishing employees supported the
anti-hunting and anti-fishing employees that rocketed into leadership
positions. Oversight of the excise taxes for State agencies was no
exception. State employees that had for decades looked on Federal
employment as a move "up" both for pay and professional "status" took all
this in. They no longer could depend on Federal "protection" from nefarious
State politicians and appointees.

10 to 15 Years ago the "new" US Fish and Wildlife Service managers and
appointees stole $45 to 60 Million from the excise taxes destined by law for
the State agencies. No one was ever punished and the STATE AGENCIES from
whom the funds were stolen NEVER even asked that they be repaid. By this
time they had decided that hunting and fishing and trapping and resource
management and State Rights were things of a disappearing past. They
decided that the future was one of "saving" imaginary things like Native
Ecosystems and "distinct population segments" of whatever plant or animal
some professor can get a grant to write about. The future was to be
financed not with the excise taxes and licenses but with Federal
appropriations through Federal agencies for the State portions of crumbs
falling from the new Federal agency tables for keeping things from
"becoming" Endangered and purifying ecosystems and enforcing Federal plant
and animal mandates on the people within their State. In short they would
become serfs to Federal masters while appearing to be employees of the State
residents and their elected officials. This involved "playing ball" with
not only the Federal bureaucrats but also with the radicals and extremists
that were pulling so many of the strings.

The last 10 years of this 35-year period has been a steady scenario of these
"adjustments" by State agencies. That is why so many have been changing
their agency names to "(State) Fish and Wildlife". Yes it was a signal to
all the radicals of a change of heart (no more "game" or "fish" or
"wildlife" or "resource" stuff) about their conversion but even more
important was the signal of solidarity, not with the State or the residents
but, with the Federal agency that was working to obtain and would hopefully
obtain the desired Millions per year from the US Congress for all the
immeasurable things that would guarantee jobs and promotions and retirements
far into the future. And the US Fish and Wildlife Service loved it and has
helped wean them from the old programs by all sorts of chicanery.

When audits were reinstituted (they were always required every 5 years but
had been abandoned years ago because no one complained) after the theft of
the $60 Million, contract auditors were hired and then fired when they found
over $125 Million had already been misused by the previously unaudited State
agencies. The findings were quietly forgiven and government hacks (the
Inspector General of Interior, the guys that oversee Indian money in
Interior) hired illegally and they have quietly conducted "reviews" since
they are not auditors and found little and are way behind the schedule and
will give up the job after the upcoming election and before the Presidential

But I have written all this ad nauseam. So what's new? Plenty.

10 Years of anti-hunters and "green" socialists growing the Federal behemoth
by feeding it State authorities and individual liberties and property have
resulted in the following "situations" in the State/Federal, excise taxes/
"new" money, hunting & fishing/ green agenda nexus today.

1.. Congress recently requested an Audit of the excise taxes. It was a
very small limited audit, requested secretly for secret purposes. The US
Fish and Wildlife Service workers never saw the authorization (highly
unusual) and managers dismissed it as a joke. It is not beyond the pale
that the cost of collecting the taxes in this age of Homeland Security is
prohibitive for IRS and Customs and that some Congressman will do away with
it as one of his "colleagues" mysteriously introduces the "new" funding from
US Appropriations at an opportune moment in the near future. But so it is
all a "secret" (like Ivory-billed Woodpecker expenditures and "lynx hair"
and the real wolf numbers and distributions) "they" know what is best for
us, don't they?
2.. The 2 largest outdoor suppliers are underpaying the excise taxes.
Importers are smuggling in fishing equipment and not paying the taxes. Arms
manufacturers are underpaying the excise taxes but audits and enforcement
are too expensive for the amounts being lost in this world of "big" stuff.
No one cares though since we get such good "deals" and nobody is saying
3.. The latest Federal overseer of hiring and firing auditors and erasing
audit findings of misused funds in State programs just retired and was
immediately rehired to oversee adjustment of "overhead fund accounting" in
the US Fish and Wildlife Service as a contractor. As a hunter and
fisherman, take it from me that this is ominous.
4.. One State is evidently using Millions in revenue from wildlife lands
that is not even reported to the State or recognized by the Federal
government. State auditors are carefully examining the political minefield
here and the Federal government ignores it because any more scandals will
delay the vaunted advent of firm and bounteous Federal appropriations for
them to pass through with instructions. What Congressman or Senator can
boast about a new program like an old program that is racked by scandals?
5.. Several States are selling off wildlife lands that were bought years
ago for a pittance for Millions in today's market. Needless to say the
State wants to put the money in the State General Fund. State agencies are
silent. Federal and State Auditors are looking to Washington. Federal
bureaucrats are working in a "policy Taskforce" to authorize that (instead
of either keeping the funds in the State agency or returning the
proportionate [based on the original purchase] to Washington for
redistribution). It will be a "win-win" for everyone except the hunter and
fisherman. Ever wonder why "our" hunting and fishing organizations never
mention this? They hire these folks when they retire (for "influence") and
even "get" their employees hired there (at the agencies) from time to time.
You'd think they'd notice, wouldn't you?

Who cares? All the Federal employees are non-hunters or anti-hunters, the
few that engage in any such activities have long since learned not to
mention it at work much less stand up for it. No one really cares about
these things and everyone has a stake in covering them up and denying them.
The deterioration of the State agencies' programs and their reeducation into
environmental saviors and "sensitive" animal protectors continues apace and
is nearly completed.

The only answer is a reassertion of actual State interests by State
politicians that know where we stand. If we let the Federal government take
over our State agencies as we have so much else, we have only ourselves to
blame. Whether they hire more people or take on more jobs or get cut in
half, those agencies should represent those of us in each State and if that
means standing up to (instead of "kowtowing to") Federal intrusions and
providing the sort of environment desired by our communities and resource
users (instead of far-off urban socialist imaginings) then they either do it
or find something else so that someone who can fight for us can do the job.
And while we're at it, let's start renaming "our" agencies with names that
reflect "our" ideas and not the ideas of alien agendas.

In one hour and 45 minutes it will be the 4th of July. Somehow that seems
worth mentioning.

Jim Beers

3 July 2006

- If you found this worthwhile, please share it with others. Thanks.

- This article and other recent articles by Jim Beers can be found at

http://jimbeers.blogster.com (Jim Beers Common Sense)

- Jim Beers is available for consulting or to speak. Contact:


- Jim Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist,
Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow.
He was stationed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York City, and
Washington DC. He also served as a US Navy Line Officer in the western
Pacific and on Adak, Alaska in the Aleutian Islands. He has worked for the
Utah Fish & Game, Minneapolis Police Department, and as a Security
Supervisor in Washington, DC. He testified three times before Congress;
twice regarding the theft by the US Fish & Wildlife Service of $45 to 60
Million from State fish and wildlife funds and once in opposition to
expanding Federal Invasive Species authority. He resides in Centreville,
Virginia with his wife of many decades.