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Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Price of Freedom

Our life is really good. For me and Bow, our ten acres are plenty good enough, and we don't actually need more. Just maintaining the status quo is all we really want.


Bow has a nice breakfast every morning, takes the time to enjoy it, and eventually he asks to go outside. The sun, coming at us from the east, as it always does, backlights Bow in our early morning snapshots. There is much to see, and Bow takes it all in.


All day long, Bow goes in and out many times a day, enjoys three square meals and a snack, drinks lemonade with blackberries in a glass goblet.


In the evening, when Bow goes to bed, I venture out and chase rabbits and look at the sky over our overgrown pasture.


When the sun finally sets, it does so due west of us, as regular as clockwork.


Could anyone ask for more? Is there more to ask for? The only thing I would want is more of the same. Much more!

We are fine right now, but I am on a fixed income, and  the money that is already there and is mine is being stolen by inflation. This means that every year that same money will buy fewer bananas and apples and grapes. Someday, it may even not be enough to pay the taxes on the land that I own outright, with no debt to anyone. And that worries me.

It does not worry me as much for me and my daughter as it does for Bow. In three years, I will have raised my daughter to adulthood. She will be fine. She will go out into the world and learn to make her own way. I have every confidence in her.

In thirty years, my life expectancy is up, according to the actuarial tables. I suspect that I may outlive that prediction by five to ten years, as I have led a rather quiet life and have not put my health at risk as much as most people. But either way, the actuarial tables are a good estimate of when the journey will be over for me.

And then there is Bow. Not just Bow, but Bow's future line. I want them to live on forever after me. I want that to be one of my contributions to the future of this planet.

The people at the sanctuaries are watching and waiting. Every once in a while they send a recruiter. They want to take Bow. They want to display him to the world and say that they "rescued" him. "Is it too hard for you yet?" they ask. "No." "Well, it will get much harder soon." One person who says he has had thirty years experience with chimpanzees predicts gloom and doom for me and Bow.

But the private owners tell a different story. After about forty years, a chimp tends to mellow out. Taking care of the older ones is actually easier. It becomes less of a struggle and more joyous.

Still I want companionship for Bow and children and grand children, and yes, that would cost a lot. And what it would mostly cost is that awful thing that ever since WWII we are not supposed to admit we want: Lebensraum! Room to live in. Lots and lots of land, thousands of acres per capita.

People say they do not like factory farms. Yet they make it impossible, through regulations of smaller farms, through harassment of private ranchers, like the Bundies, and by regulating dairy products and confiscating cheese, for anybody but large corporate firms to own land to farm on in more traditional ways. They say that they want to help the homeless, but when homeless people start camping out in the national parks and living like hunter-gatherers, they send their Federal troops to dispossess them. They say they want to help chimpanzees, but really if any chimpanzees took up a more natural life on American soil, I bet the conservationists would go after them as an "invasive" species to be eradicated.



Recently, a large plot of land, consisting of over five thousand acres has gone on the market here in Missouri. It used to be several different ranches, but the ranchers' way of life had been destroyed by the laws and regulations that activists favor. The land has a rich history, for it contains Native American burial grounds. But people who give lip service to the Native American lifestyle seldom campaign for the repeal of current laws that make it impossible. The first thing that would need to be repealed would be property taxes.


An incomparable property offering crystal clear spring fed streams, forests, massive bluffs, large caves, fenced and cross-fenced areas for livestock, wide-open ranges and picturesque views, hundreds of miles of riding, hiking and ATV trails, lecture, store, chapel, 1000 horse stalls, 300 campsites and more.

The land features beautiful vistas and acres upon acres of virgin land.


The asking price? Eight point three million dollars. I don't have that kind of money. Neither does anyone that I know. It occurred to me to start a Kickstarter project to purchase the land for Project Bow to make it into a primate sanctuary. But I don't think that any of my well-wishers or all of them together could come up with anywhere near the asking price.


People who are interested in purchasing my books often decide not to because they are too expensive:

http://lesliebard.blogspot.com/2014/07/book-review-theodosia-and-pirates-by.html

It looks like it is expensive. But her earlier books, also expensive, look good. 
I wish that my library had these, but two extensive county library systems did not respond to her name.
My well-wishers are not wealthy people. I can't have unrealistic expectations about what they can give. So I need to count my blessings and make do with what we have, which is admittedly very good. But if any of those pesky recruiters for the sanctuaries comes around and says he wants to "help" me and Bow, I will ask him to buy that property for us. That is the kind of help we could use!

In order for chimpanzees to be self-sufficient, they need plenty of land. Food really does grow on trees and bushes and it does hop about grazing on  the natural plant life. But if chimpanzees are not allowed to own lots of land and are deprived of Lebensraum , then the next best thing for chimpanzees is to cohabit with humans who buy them food in the supermarket. And what we need in order for that to continue to work is for there to be fewer laws and regulations and less taxation and inflation. What we don't need is activism directed against cattle ranchers or independent farmers. And what we especially don't need is a public campaign against primate ownership.

for the recipe follow this link

My philosophy is live and let live. I don't go after people who have a different lifestyle from mine, and all I really ask is that others do the same. Our life here is good. May it continue so.

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