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Follow the Sun by E. V. Pete Hester Follow the Sun By E. V. Pete Hester Copyright Pending 2015     Foreword Butch Madison told this story to me several years ago and swore that everything he told was true and...

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J. I. Hall, Jr.....A Western Novel by E. V. Pete Hester This is my latest novel and it is not in a good format for reading, however, it is readable. I enjoyed writing this book and I had problems finding a publisher....so, what the heck, I wrote it just for...

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Confederates move to Brazil...John W. and Lisanna Brownlow... Otis Vaughn is interested in locating members of the Brownlow (Vaughn descendants) family who relocated to Brazil after the Civil War. In the past, I have had several readers from Brazil and if any of...

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The Saga of Zachary Williams, The Sabine Kid My book publisher gave me the rights back to my book, The Saga of Zachary Williams, well, kind of saying it was just "sorry and no good"....nah, he didn't say it that way but that is how it kind of came...

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Fishing Trip

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 11-06-2013

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Here is a picture of the two boats used on our outing. Both are two man but they worked great. The red raft type boat had a six horse outboard and would really get you across the lake in a hurry and  it also had the trolling motor. The crew worked them over pretty good, but the bank fishing was ok also.2013 fishing trip 003Our top fishermen were no. 1 son in law and no. 3 grandson, shown here with the first stringer full of fish they caught. There was a nice bass in this bunch of fish and was the only bass caught on the trip. (Pickups in the background haul the 4 wheelers used on the trip.)

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San Juan Mountains Colorado (our fishing trip)

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 09-06-2013

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Nestled in the San Juan Mountains is the beautiful Vallecito Lake. Several creeks and rivers  feeds water into this lake which feeds its water to several entities there in Colorado, but mainly for the Ute Indian Reservation just south of the lake. The water coming into the lake is right off the snow melt of the high mountain terrain surrounding the lake. The boys gave me a ride on the 4 wheelers back into some pretty rough county. It was beautiful country, horseback riding country, rough and rugged and it only takes a few minutes of seeing this vast wilderness to note that it contains a lot of snow melt. The lake was down this year according to Bob Croll, owner of the Croll Cabins, but most of the time the lake is lapping at his cabin property. Several photos will be forthcoming but here is a couple of mountain shots I would like to share with you.

2013 fishing trip 0412013 fishing trip 035I don’t know the area, but somewhere back in here is Sunlight Peak, 14,089 feet and Windom Peak, 14,082 feet. Even in early June, evening and mornings are pretty nippy. The trees in this photo have been attacked by a bark beetle killing many trees in the area. Pete

 

Croll’s Cabin at Vallecito Lake near Durango, Co

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 07-06-2013

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2013 fishing trip 012Need a place to just get away or do some fishing or horseback riding. Bob Croll’s cabins are nice, stocked with all you need except food…It is nice and quiet, wonderful views and the fish are a good size. Last year at Platoro, the fishing seemed to be a little better but the fish were smaller. The good thing about the Croll cabins, they are right on the water. At Platoro, you have to drive a ways to fish if other than river fishing. AT Vallecito, you have to drive a ways to 4 wheel. That helps make it quieter  and less dusty at Vallecito but a little unhandy for some of the boys. It all worked out and we had a wonderful time. Click on the picture to enlarge it. Give the Croll’s a call if you are looking to get away. E. V. Pete Hester

Gone fishin’

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 02-06-2013

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Look out Colorado, here we come. I hope we bring back lots of fish, lots of good stories and lots of good pictures. You might recall after our trip last year, numerous pictures were printed on this site. I know you can hardly wait. Well, I’m excited about being out with my sons, grand sons and  in-laws. What a pleasure they all are and they are so nice to yours truly….Wow…There are several boys in this bunch that are good cooks, but no. 2 son watches all the cooking shows on tv and then adds some of his own touches and feeds us so well….. really fishing is secondary…Eating is what this trip is all about….I’m ready…Keep coming by folks. By the way, May 2013 was the busiest month ever in the history of hesterbooks.com, over 13,000 visitors and nearly 45,000 hits. Thank you for that…..click on some of my advertisers, ok? Thanks for that as well….

Memorial Day

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 25-05-2013

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Thanks to our veterans we can enjoy this holiday weekend anyway we wish and with whoever we wish to celebrate it with. We call it freedom. Thank you men and women for your military service. This sent to hesterbooks.com from a friend in Dallas.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JKqT0-3JV5E&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Transgender, er, Person From Albuquerque

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 24-05-2013

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First off, I don’t know the person who claims to be a boy now that she, er, he, er, it….(can you use it when referring to a person? Well, maybe not.) Ok, let me start over. This person wanted to walk on graduation night in a black gown, normally worn by boys. She had changed her name from a girls name to a boys name and identified herself as a boy. This person was born a girl and girls wear white gowns  at graduation. Now this is a Catholic School and Catholic Schools don’t put up with no crap. They kind’a said, “you came to this school as a girl, you gonna leave as a girl”, probably a little more refined than that, but meaning, you walk in a white gown, as a girl, or you don’t walk at all. Well, she, or he did not walk. Graduation went on and everybody but she or he, graduated….She or he stayed home. Her dad kind of said, if she wants to be a boy, she can be a boy and I don’t know him either. But you think he would know, huh? Surely he changed some diapers during its younger years. To me, you got to be one or the other, but that’s just the way I am…I don’t like grey area’s…..You a boy or you a girl. You got boy plumbing, you a boy….You got girl plumbing, you a girl. The other thing is, which rest room did she or he use during school, huh, the boys or girls….Now that would be a pretty good clue as to which gown the person must wear. I think the school handled it correctly, boy plumbing, black gown…girl plumbing, white gown…..end of story….But watch the media, this story will not die…You wanna bet? We’ll see….Pete

Tornado Alley

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 22-05-2013

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My family used to live in Decatur, Tx, right in the tornado alley. When storm clouds came up I was as nervous as a cat. Many nights I paced the floor, going from window to window, keeping watch for the tale-tale signs of the tornado dipping down from the clouds. Luckily, we were spared the trauma of going through that heart ache. I can’t help it, but yesterday as the folks on tv were talking about their losses, some tears came, but I don’t know if I fully comprehend just what all they are going through, to lose everything collected over their lifetime….and to think about starting all over. Yet I am sure they are thankful for that opportunity. Their lives were spared and they count their blessings. Won’t you join me in saying a prayer for those who lost everything, those who lost family members and all those who must go through the rebuilding process and land clean-up? As we pray for them, we also need to thank our Lord God for sparing us from storms, floods, fires and all kind of events that can take all of our homes and belongings away from us. “Hear our prayers, oh Lord, and bless all our hurting people.”…Pete

Rock Paintings by Pete

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 14-05-2013

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Alabama Boys are Hunters, Huh?

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 08-05-2013

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All Alabama boys are hunters, aren’t they? Well, I did some hunting in my youthful days in Alabama, also. Killed a few squirrels I saw running up in trees  myself. Took part in chasing some coons around Coalfire Creek swampland. That’s Pickens County for some of you folks who don’t know. But did I ever tell you about the time I came face to face with a grey squirrel? I had just started sneaking around to smoke and so I took our 22 rifle down to the swamp looking for some squirrel for supper and for a chance to smoke a couple. I was sitting, leaning up against a hickory nut tree. My .22 rifle was leaning against the tree.  This squirrel came down a nearby tree and started chewing on a nut.Had it stayed up in the trees I could have shot it or at least shot at it,  It took me a long time to ease my hand over, get the rifle and slowly get it up to my shoulder. All this time the little squirrel kept chewing on that nut. He had it between his front paws standing on his hind legs. It was a really cute squirrel. About the time I got a good bead on it, it looked at me…..looked at me square in the eyes, no, he stared at me as my bead was drawn right on his little bitty head….and I read his mind…It said, “you wouldn’t really shoot me, would you?”, looked even cuter and repeated, “would you?”. That made me mad really, cause I could not pull the trigger. Well, I was not going to let it get away without at least scaring it so I pulled the gun a few inches or so to the left and shot at the ground. The dang squirrel went to running and climbed about 1/2 up a nearby tree, stopped, then looked back at me. I was still mad so I shot about a foot under him, hitting the tree and he scampered on up the tree. There was no way I could have shot that little feller. I learned a lot about myself that day. From then on I left the squirrel killing up to Dad and did my smoking at various other hiding places. I am not a good hunter. Don’t get me wrong, if I had to put some meat on the table I think I could. But it is a lot harder if I’m looking it right in the eyes. Thats so for squirrel or deer. Now,  I prefer to buy my meat already butchered and packaged. But I’m glad for you if you can hunt…I’m not good at it…Pete

Think Your Phone Calls are Private? Please Read….

Posted by Pete | Posted in News | Posted on 07-05-2013

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Just think folks, you can leave me a comment here and it will probably be recorded in Washington. Is that neat or what……Pete

From the UK Guardian (US Edition) of today May 6, 2013

Are all telephone calls recorded and accessible to the US government?

A former FBI counterterrorism agent claims on CNN that this is the case

CNN Clemente

Former FBI  counterterrorism agent Tim Clemente, on CNN, discussing government’s  surveillance capabilities Photograph: CNN screegrab

The real capabilities and behavior of the US surveillance state are almost entirely unknown to the American public because, like  most things of significance done by the US government, it operates  behind an impenetrable wall of secrecy. But a seemingly spontaneous  admission this week by a former FBI counterterrorism agent provides a  rather startling acknowledgment of just how vast and invasive these  surveillance activities are.

Over the past couple days, cable news tabloid shows such as CNN’s Out Front with Erin Burnett have been  excitingly focused on the possible involvement in the Boston Marathon  attack of Katherine Russell, the 24-year-old American widow of the  deceased suspect, Tamerlan Tsarnaev. As part of their relentless stream  of leaks uncritically disseminated by our Adversarial Press Corps, anonymous government officials are claiming that they are  now focused on telephone calls between Russell and  Tsarnaev that took place both before and after the attack to determine  if she had prior knowledge of the plot or participated in any way.

On Wednesday night, Burnett interviewed Tim Clemente, a former FBI counterterrorism agent, about whether the FBI would be  able to discover the contents of past telephone conversations between  the two. He quite clearly insisted that they could:

BURNETT: Tim, is there any way, obviously, there is a voice mail they can try to get the phone companies to give that up at this point. It’s not a voice mail. It’s just a conversation. There’s no way they actually can find  out what happened, right, unless she tells them?

CLEMENTE: “No, there is a way. We certainly have ways in national security investigations to find out exactly what was said in that conversation. It’s not  necessarily something that the FBI is going to want to present in court, but it may help lead the investigation and/or lead to questioning of  her. We certainly can find that out.

BURNETT: “So they can actually get that? People are saying, look, that is incredible.

CLEMENTE: “No, welcome to America. All of that stuff is being captured as we speak whether we know it or like it or not.”

“All of that stuff” – meaning every telephone conversation Americans have  with one another on US soil, with or without a search warrant – “is  being captured as we speak”.

On Thursday night, Clemente again  appeared on CNN, this time with host Carol Costello, and she asked him  about those remarks. He reiterated what he said the night before but  added expressly that “all digital communications in the past” are  recorded and stored:

Let’s repeat that last part: “no digital communication is secure”, by which he means not  that any communication is susceptible to government interception as it  happens (although that is true), but far beyond that: all digital  communications – meaning telephone calls, emails, online chats and the  like – are automatically recorded and stored and accessible to the  government after the fact. To describe that is to define what a  ubiquitous, limitless Surveillance State is.

There have been some previous indications that this is true. Former AT&T engineer Mark Klein revealed that AT&T and other telecoms had built a special network that  allowed the National Security Agency full and unfettered access to data  about the telephone calls and the content of email communications for  all of their customers. Specifically, Klein explained “that the NSA set  up a system that vacuumed up Internet and phone-call data from ordinary  Americans with the cooperation of AT&T” and that “contrary to the  government’s depiction of its surveillance program as aimed at overseas  terrorists . . . much of the data sent through AT&T to the NSA was  purely domestic.” But his amazing revelations were mostly ignored and,  when Congress retroactively immunized the nation’s telecom giants for  their participation in the illegal Bush spying programs, Klein’s claims  (by design) were prevented from being adjudicated in court.

That every single telephone call is recorded and stored would also explain this extraordinary revelation by the Washington Post in 2010:

Every day, collection systems at the National Security Agency intercept and store  1.7 billion e-mails, phone calls and other types of communications.

It would also help explain the revelations of former NSA official William Binney, who resigned from the agency in protest over its systemic spying on the domestic communications of US citizens, that the US government has  “assembled on the order of 20 trillion transactions about US citizens  with other US citizens” (which counts only communications transactions  and not financial and other transactions), and that “the data that’s  being assembled is about everybody. And from that data, then they can  target anyone they want.”

Despite the extreme secrecy behind which these surveillance programs operate, there have been periodic reports of serious abuse. Two Democratic Senators, Ron Wyden and Mark Udall, have been warning for years that Americans would be “stunned” to learn what the US government is doing in terms of secret surveillance.

tia logoStrangely, back in 2002 – when hysteria over the 9/11 attacks (and  thus acquiescence to government power) was at its peak – the Pentagon’s  attempt to implement what it called the “Total Information Awareness”  program (TIA) sparked so much public controversy that it had to be official scrapped. But it has been incrementally  re-instituted – without the creepy (though honest) name and  all-seeing-eye logo – with little controversy or even notice.

Back in 2010, worldwide controversy erupted when the governments of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates banned the use of Blackberries because some communications were inaccessible to government  intelligence agencies, and that could not be tolerated. The Obama  administration condemned this move on the ground that it threatened core freedoms, only to turn around six weeks later and demand that all forms of digital communications allow the US government backdoor access to intercept them. Put another way,  the US government embraced exactly the same rationale invoked by the UAE and Saudi agencies: that no communications can be off limits. Indeed,  the UAE, when responding to condemnations from the Obama administration, noted that it was simply doing exactly that which the US government  does:

“‘In fact, the UAE is exercising its sovereign  right and is asking for exactly the same regulatory compliance – and  with the same principles of judicial and regulatory oversight – that  Blackberry grants the US and other governments and nothing more,’ [UAE  Ambassador to the US Yousef Al] Otaiba said. ‘Importantly, the UAE  requires the same compliance as the US for the very same reasons: to  protect national security and to assist in law enforcement.'”

That no human communications can be allowed to take place without the  scrutinizing eye of the US government is indeed the animating principle  of the US Surveillance State. Still, this revelation, made in passing on CNN, that every single telephone call made by and among Americans is  recorded and stored is something which most people undoubtedly do not  know, even if the small group of people who focus on surveillance issues believed it to be true (clearly, both Burnett and Costello were shocked to hear this).

Some new polling suggests that Americans, even after the Boston attack, are growing increasingly  concerned about erosions of civil liberties in the name of Terrorism.  Even those people who claim it does not matter instinctively understand  the value of personal privacy: they put locks on their bedroom doors and vigilantly safeguard their email passwords. That’s why the US  government so desperately maintains a wall of secrecy around their  surveillance capabilities: because they fear that people will find their behavior unacceptably intrusive and threatening, as they did even back  in 2002 when John Poindexter’s TIA was unveiled.

Mass  surveillance is the hallmark of a tyrannical political culture. But  whatever one’s views on that, the more that is known about what the US  government and its surveillance agencies are doing, the better. This  admission by this former FBI agent on CNN gives a very good sense for  just how limitless these activities are.