From the January 2001 Idaho Observer:

Pro se Inchelium man petitions U.S. Supreme Court

“Retiree” reduces 18-year hunting rights controversy to six constitutional questions

By Don Harkins

COLVILLE, Wash. -- For the first time in 140 years a pro se litigant may have his questions answered by the U.S. Supreme Court. On October 31, 2000, Inchelium, Wash., resident Ervin Palmer, 82, petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals for a Writ of Certiorari in answer to six questions that have arisen during his 18-year battle with state, federal and private entities over his right to hunt and trap his own patented land on the Colville Indian Reservation.

Palmer purchased his 120 acres in one of the wildest, game rich areas of the U.S. in 1960 with the intention of retiring there and supplementing his income by trapping on his own land. Palmer's documents show that on August 29, 1982, in order to save face on a dispute over fishing rights it would lose in federal court, the state of Washington entered into an agreement with the Colville tribe that discriminated against non-Indians. The state, through what is now the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife (WDFW), agreed to declare a non-scientific “emergency” regarding populations of certain fur-bearing animals. The WDFW also agreed that a moratorium on hunting and trapping these animals would only apply to non-Indians (The Idaho Observer, June, 1999).

Since declaring this discriminatory “state of emergency” the state has received in excess of $120,000,000 in federal habitat restorations monies.

Rather than being able to spend his retirement hunting and trapping animals on his own patented piece of land as he had originally intended, Palmer has been forced to spend his entire retirement fighting for his right legally trap the same animals his Indian neighbors are allowed to trap.

Over the last 18 years, Palmer has patiently, ethically, legally and systematically exhausted every administrative remedy at his disposal. In the process he has uncovered the evidence which proves that the WDFW-declared emergency that has taken his rights away is a fraud that was perpetrated against him for political expediency.

After nearly two decades and the collection of a 20-foot-high stack of documents, Palmer boiled his case down to six fundamental questions (which are listed in the box below) -- The answers to which would be of tremendous contemporary significance to all Americans who prefer freedom to slavery.

The Respondents listed in this case are WDFW Region 2 Director Raymond L. Duff; former Game Commission Chairman Vern E. Zeigler (of Zeigler plumbing and electric stores) and; WDFW Region 1 Director Bruce R. Smith.

“I believe that the Supreme Court will answer my petition and that its answers will set a contemporary precedent in cases all over the country where governments are violating the rights of ordinary citizens,” said Palmer.

The Court may refuse to hear the Petition, or it may rule that public officials have the right to make and enforce laws that are unconstitutional; may continue to enforce unconstitutional laws indefinitely; may commit fraud without fear of criminal prosecution; may violate peoples' civil rights without fear of criminal prosecution and; may make admissions of guilt in the commission of crimes and not be prosecuted for them.

The U.S. Supreme Court has one other option: It may rule that public officials do not have the right to lawlessly violate the civil rights of law-abiding Americans which would signal the beginning of an era where lawless bureaucrats are held constitutionally accountable for their crimes against people.

Palmer's saga was originally published in the June, 1999 edition of The Idaho Observer. The story may be obtained by visiting The IO website at: or by sending $2 to The Idaho Observer.

Questions before the Supreme Court

1. Can State statute of limitations overrule Federal law that (quote) “Where rights secured by the Constitution are involved, there can be no rule making or legislation which would abrogate them”. (unquote)?

2. Can statute of limitations apply to crimes that are ongoing?

3. Can crimes committed against the U.S. Constitution become law?

4. Can parties enforce agreements that are contrary to the Constitution and its securities?

5. Does fraud vitiate an agreement that concerns and involves one's civil rights?

6. Can defendants, who by their own acts and admissions of wrongs, come to court with “Clean Hands” and expect relief?

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