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P.S. from the Author of Walkers Rights Options
John Edward Mercier
#1 Posted : Sunday, May 18, 2008 12:17:51 AM
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There is no such thing as an 'exploitive corporation'. Corporations are non-entities. The people that run, work for, and own corporations can be exploitive, but not the non-entity.


Mare Owner
#2 Posted : Saturday, May 24, 2008 5:24:50 AM
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I wonder if he would have looked on with a little love if the hikers had ripped down something he had hung up on his property.

He brings up a lot of thought provoking questions, but there are no answers that fit everyone.

#3 Posted : Sunday, May 25, 2008 12:50:47 AM
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I reside in beautiful Western Colorado and had five Turkey Vultures circle and soar above my head, while hiking, a few years ago.  They are ugly as sin up close but impressive from a distance.  Regrading the author's sighting/close encounter, the vulture in question chose wisely not to sample its potential prey as the aftertase would have been unpleasant and likely lingered for several days.  In response to the original piece, I would like to be the first to apply for the "Walker's/Hiker's Rights Identity Card".  I like the idea.  I have always been respectful on public land, not to mention any private land, where only footprints were left behind.  I would gladly meet some set standard to be allowed access to otherwise inaccessable lands to revel in some remote destination or vista..  No lingering, loitering, thievery, or destruction as hidden agenda, just the opportunity to appreciate hidden treasures for the eye and digital record.  Thanks for your thoughts and words Allan.



#4 Posted : Monday, May 26, 2008 7:22:01 PM
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I have no problem with people walking across my property as long as a few things are observed:

1. They close any gates that they open.

2.  They leave any gates open that were open before.

3.  They leave things as they were not not change things or damage anything.

4.  They take their trash with them when they leave.

5.  They don't sue me if they get injured on my property (since I didn't invite them), either by an animal or by falling or whatever.

My personal feeling is that a good fence with plenty of "No Trespassing" signs work well.  Some people don't like them, but I feel that in today's society, we have to have them because of people who sue and/or have no respect for other peoples' property and/or feelings.


Earth Home Project:


#5 Posted : Thursday, May 29, 2008 2:36:54 AM
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I agree that in a perfect world with perfect people anyone should be able to go anywhere, and I used to welcome them.  

As someone who more than once has had to go out and round up his cattle, goats, sheep and horses after someone "took a walk" across my property and didn't close livestock gates behind them.  Even though when they left the gates open there were polite signs that said "Please close the gate after you", but they still left that gates open.  This lead me to put up "No Trespassing" signs all around my property

After one said fiasco I had to pay for damage done by my livestock to other's property because some clueless walker left my gates open.  I can't afford to keep doing that both in monetarty terms and neighbourly good will terms

So until the world and its people become perfected, I guess my no trespassing signs will stay up and I don't blame anyone else for doing the same.

#6 Posted : Tuesday, September 23, 2008 7:27:00 AM
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Quite frankly i pay for my piece of this world.  I pay the yearly rental fee to the government and all the insurances to protect my piece of this world from folks who usualy are too stupid to not get hurt.
Its mine, not theirs and no one has any right to infringe upon my property rights.  I'm kinda funny that way you know.   When they start paying me for access to my piece of this world, then i will consider letting someone on my place.

#7 Posted : Tuesday, October 21, 2008 2:30:54 PM
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This is a topic that Burns my bottom.  I've lived on this farm forever, my Great great uncle built this house in 1900. So I'm no transplant. People move up this way from Philly or NJ becouse they like the idea of rural life, but just like people who pick and choose parts and bits of diffrant religons that suit them, so do the wann-be country boys.  I live in a place that is great becouse all of the farmers get along and work together. You want to hunt here, fine I have work do to, good luck..I could give a hoot if you or anyone walks across the pasture. Just be a respectful guest.  But the other great parts or rural life are in danger when people put up the yellow posted sighns and act like they own the world. Yip Yip yahoo...ya sold your 2 acres in the city and moved out here to buy 12, I have 300, my kin have another 900. then the next step that the flatlander will take is onto our farm.  Hey, you can't come here if I can't come over that way. Don't tell me you won't help and then ask me for help in the same breath....If folks want to replicate this lifestyle they need to replicate all of it.  Be a Christian 7 days a week if you know what I mean.

mike if someone left the gate open, go find him and ask him not to come back. When our stock got out and walked over the lawn next door, I told the man next door I was thinking it was time to hang it up. I said "the price is always good, we could subdevide and make a million bucks".  His home is in the middle of our farm..he is now more polite. It's part of the life, somethimes stuff happens.  The earthy life has it's set backs like cow pies at every crossing point.  Don't like it? Move. 

I was told the other day that our way of life here, is a lot like that of the native people. When white fellows came and found this land cheif said...you found it? we were always here white man...what's wrong with you?  The earthy movement is great. but just canning, gardening and getting off the grid is not enough. For the person who wants the next step, it's time to get back to the way we used to treat each other.  This area never changed, we've always been green, but we used to call it POVERTY!  You had to live this way to live.

 One can't pick and choose what they want to do if they truly want to get back. If your friend needs help, you help him, but you should be to proud to ask for it...if your fellow man would like to hunt on your farm, or fish your stream...what will that hurt? Nothing, if your saving that spot for your son to hunt on this afternoon, that's diffrant.  On opening day of deer season here,  I have "My Rock" to hunt from. I'll pass that spot to my son or my Nef some day. If someone wants to sit on my rock on the 3rd day of deer season, I'll let them...but opening day that rock is the only place you can't be...but the other 299.8 acres, you can hunt till your blue.  

It's like every single flatlander that moves here to live the country life builds a pond....why?  Why did they all need a pond if the guy next door has one? If every single person grew corn, and no one grew peas..what would you have? you'd have 20 bags of corn on the front step every time you came home.  What a waste of recorces we have here?  Think about what it takes to own one of everything. The farmer up the road takes our bulldozer each year, and brings his brush hog down to mow.  Why should we both have one of each?  Talk about carbon Footprint. if we are all a little more relaxed about our land, we'd conserve.

Here in Pa, if your land is open, not posted (and you still have the right to reject folks who litter ect) your coverd, they can't take you to court as easy if they step in a ground hog hole or whatever.  The idea is to keep people from posting everything. Hunting is a major part of our state revenue we need hunters to have an econemy.  And why encorage people to do more basic things and put down the remote controle when you can't find a place to hike, bike or fish? 


#8 Posted : Monday, November 17, 2008 10:19:54 PM
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i have put signs on my land now. to many thieves and people that are irresponsible hunters. id like for it not to be this way but it has shown me that it is and i will react to it .

#9 Posted : Saturday, December 27, 2008 6:32:36 PM
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We keep talking about building a wall around our property, which keeps getting higher too, someone just stole our Blessed Mother statue from the front yard!!
#10 Posted : Monday, January 26, 2009 7:43:15 PM
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"If folks want to replicate this lifestyle they need to replicate all of it.  Be a Christian 7 days a week if you know what I mean."

Can I get an "Amen" brother!!

#11 Posted : Wednesday, January 28, 2009 9:55:08 AM
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If your fellow man wants to hunt and fish on your property, what will that hurt?  Let's see... my parents only have 50 acres and only lived there for 40 years, so maybe they don't count compared to someone that has lots and lived there for generations.  However, they have folks that come from the city and access their property without asking.  These folks may not know where the house is and definitely don't know who else is out there hunting, so don't really care what direction that they are aiming when they shoot.  To me, that is dangerous.  They come in and build tree stands, cut down trees, and steal things.  Hasn't happened to the folks, but there are cases of these people shooting something that they don't have a clear view of, and after the fact leaving it (injured or dead) when they discover that they shot a cow, horse, mule, etc... I have had folks come to my place with their kids, and I find the kids running, screaming, and spooking my animals.  The kids think it's fun, the parents think it's cute, and both seem to think that I am just being mean when I try to explain why they need to quit.  I think that folks should ask before entering, if they are hunters we can tell them where everyone else is hunting (and let other hunters know where they will be).  We can tell them where any of our livestock are, and give them the rules if they are going to be around the livestock.  Until they learn to respect the land and the animals on it... not that posted signs do any good, they rip them down and keep going. 
#12 Posted : Sunday, April 19, 2009 6:09:12 AM
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Well,  I see your point if you still have good neighbors and live in a close knit farmer community.

But, In my world down here in the south.  We have to chain the gates close so people dont just 'drive right on thru' The only reason my family decided to purchase this farm was the fact that it came up for sale and it's notthing like being able to safe the burial ground of your forefathers. So unless you understand the reason I don't want you walking and destroying the tree grave markers, and that I let the tree die before I even think about cutting it down, and that if you aren't watching the way you go you may find yourself up against a widow maker dead tree limb. just go back to the public road that we all helped pay for and noone will be sued if you fall down and hurt your knee.

Down here there was a case were a friend of the family was sued because a young kid decided to ride his 3 wheeler on his land and got killed and he lost the case. Even though he did not give permission nor did he even know the kid. His land was posted with store bought keep out and no tresspass sign, but since he didn't post the information at the courthouse and in all the local papers he lost and lost the farm which is now making the ex-farm next door into a trailer park for people like that kid that got himself killed. Everybody on a quarter ac. of land and buy things that have they have no where to use. And they think we live in the country so we can let the kids run around without being watch.

All I have to say is no farms no food, and what I grow is what I eat and when you get hungry grow your own.

John Edward Mercier
#13 Posted : Sunday, April 19, 2009 5:30:54 PM
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Most likely something to do with your State's property laws...

I think the author may have been looking at the Lockean philosophy under which the Union was founded, but more likely doing so from a personal perspective rather than the broader altruistic version.



Computer Cowboy
#14 Posted : Thursday, June 04, 2009 4:54:05 PM
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I'm surprised that he didn't feel that the buzzard had every natural right to eat his puppy. This seems inconsistent with his philosophy.

John Edward Mercier
#15 Posted : Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:37:03 PM
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Actually the buzzard did have the natural right to eat the puppy...

Natural law derives property by the act of possession.

#16 Posted : Sunday, June 07, 2009 1:37:03 PM
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Here's a P.S. from the author of the original piece (Allan Stellar). I’m not sure if this will prompt further discussion or bring things to a close. But, as always, we hope you’ll express your views and share your thoughts.

Troy Griepentrog
Associate Editor

Earth News



Last Saturday I was at our little solar homestead by myself. Well, I did have my new puppy with me.

By late afternoon, I'd completed a couple of projects that my wife had asked me to do. I'd watered the apricot tree. And also the newly planted olive trees that my spouse had replanted a few days ago (their third move). I could have started laying the new bamboo floor in the cabin, but I didn't have the correct nails. I could have pulled off the old molding in the cabin, but I couldn't find the blue iron (OK, I didn't look too hard). I could have put some new cabinets together, but you should see how complicated those instructions are!

So, instead, I did what I do best: nothing.

I did manage to take the puppy to the swimming hole. And we took a walk (still no new "no trespassing" signs). Time to celebrate the day’s accomplishments (and nonaccomplishments) with dinner: a sandwich and a six-dollar bottle of pinot noir that is quite excellent.

After dinner, I sat on our concrete slab that within two months will hold a new post and beam family room (along with a straw-bale addition next to it.) The posts will be digger pine (from our property). I watched the treetops sway in the wind. Content.

Above, very far above, there were 12 (yes, I counted them) turkey vultures swirling around, riding the thermals.

The shadow came first. Seemed like the shadow of a 747 landing at O'Hare. Then I felt the whoosh of the wind and glanced up to see a huge turkey vulture passing by my head as I sat in my camp chair. I could have reached out and grabbed him! I watched him fly down the property at eye level.

This is curious.

He flew up above the trees, circled around and strafed me again. Flying a mere five or six feet above my head. How unusual.

What the heck is he doing? The new puppy was asleep at my feet. I quickly placed him under our picnic table (that I was sitting quite close to) and tied him to the seat. I'd never heard of a turkey vulture taking live prey — and he surely wasn't gonna’ get my new 9-week-old yellow lab. I thought buzzards were only interested in dead things?

I sat back in my chair to enjoy the show. And sure enough, the vulture did it again, strafing my head by a few feet. What did he want? Was it that, having not showered for a couple of days, he thought I was dead? Or was it the pinot noir?

After a few more passes, I watched the scavenger fly off — only to hear a car behind me.

I watched the car turn into our driveway. A newish station wagon. The vehicle was filled with people, and I watched them stop. Then they piled out. First four sixty-something people emerged out of the car. Three men and one woman. And I watched the back hatch go up as two (I assume) husbands pulled their wives, with great effort, out of the seatless back of the station wagon.

They were a mere thirty yards away, and I could hear them talk.

"Did you bring the binoculars?" An acquiescent gentleman reached into the car and retrieved them. The six unlikely, gray-haired visitors were decked out in hiking clothes. Hiking shorts. Crisp, clean, short-sleeved shirts. They gathered water bottles. Cinched up hip packs. And the women pulled out three of the longest hiking sticks I've ever seen. Gandalfian in nature, they were as tall as the ladies were.

The whole ensemble looked as if they were all retired accountants who had been given a $1,000 gift certificate to Patagonia, rather than a gift watch.

"We are going to hike to the end of the canyon to enjoy the view." they called to me. "We want to walk!"

Did I really hear that?

I'd never seen a hiker on my property before. I watched in awe, maybe even a little bit of love, as they ambled off. One husband then got in the car and drove on ahead of the rest.

Amazed by the synchronicity of these two events, the curious turkey vulture and the six geriatric hikers ... it hit me. Yes, I know ... one mustn't read too much into two separate events. There is a fine line between Jungian, Scarabian synchronicity and psychosis. And the difference between mysticism and delusional belief systems are in the eye of the beholder. After all, I am a psychiatric RN by trade and have met more reincarnated messiahs and saints than I can number. Dangerous territory to be a mystic.

Yet, I'd written this piece for Mother Earth News in the spirit of Ed Abbey. Abbey said he wanted to be reincarnated as a turkey vulture. This curious behavior of the vulture, was that Ed? Was Ed trying to get my attention (or my wine) by strafing me because impending tourists were arriving? Was this Ed's stamp of approval (or disapproval?) on my little essay? Was it his way to get my attention that I was about to reap what I had sown?

And the Patagonia-clad hikers? Was this a test to live what I wrote? To share with others the wonders we have around us? Surely part of the responsibility of being a property owner is to share the beauty of such with others (including our relations who are nonhuman). Does anyone really own the Earth? What's the difference between a property owner and an exploitive corporation, if all the former wants to do is take the treasures of the land for themselves. And only themselves?

I'll never see a turkey vulture in quite the same way again. Let the walkers pass. Read Abbey.

Allan Stellar

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