'Gestapo' tactics meet senior citizens at Yellowstone

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Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#1 Oct 8, 2013
NEWBURYPORT — Pat Vaillancourt went on a trip last week that was intended to showcase some of America’s greatest treasures.

Instead, the Salisbury resident said she and others on her tour bus witnessed an ugly spectacle that made her embarrassed, angry and heartbroken for her country.

Vaillancourt was one of thousands of people who found themselves in a national park as the federal government shutdown went into effect on Oct. 1. For many hours her tour group, which included senior citizen visitors from Japan, Australia, Canada and the United States, were locked in a Yellowstone National Park hotel under armed guard.

The tourists were treated harshly by armed park employees, she said, so much so that some of the foreign tourists with limited English skills thought they were under arrest.

When finally allowed to leave, the bus was not allowed to halt at all along the 2.5-hour trip out of the park, not even to stop at private bathrooms that were open along the route.

“We’ve become a country of fear, guns and control,” said Vaillancourt, who grew up in Lawrence.“It was like they brought out the armed forces. Nobody was saying,‘we’re sorry,’ it was all like —” as she clenched her fist and banged it against her forearm.

Vaillancourt took part in a nine-day tour of western parks and sites along with about four dozen senior citizen tourists. One of the highlights of the tour was to be Yellowstone, where they arrived just as the shutdown went into effect.

Rangers systematically sent visitors out of the park, though some groups that had hotel reservations — such as Vaillancourt’s — were allowed to stay for two days. Those two days started out on a sour note, she said.

The bus stopped along a road when a large herd of bison passed nearby, and seniors filed out to take photos. Almost immediately, an armed ranger came by and ordered them to get back in, saying they couldn’t “recreate.” The tour guide, who had paid a $300 fee the day before to bring the group into the park, argued that the seniors weren’t “recreating,” just taking photos.

“She responded and said,‘Sir, you are recreating,’ and her tone became very aggressive,” Vaillancourt said.

The seniors quickly filed back onboard and the bus went to the Old Faithful Inn, the park’s premier lodge located adjacent to the park’s most famous site, Old Faithful geyser. That was as close as they could get to the famous site — barricades were erected around Old Faithful, and the seniors were locked inside the hotel, where armed rangers stayed at the door.

“They looked like Hulk Hogans, armed. They told us you can’t go outside,” she said.“Some of the Asians who were on the tour said,‘Oh my God, are we under arrest?’ They felt like they were criminals.”

By Oct. 3 the park, which sees an average of 4,500 visitors a day, was nearly empty. The remaining hotel visitors were required to leave.

As the bus made its 2.5-hour journey out of Yellowstone, the tour guide made arrangements to stop at a full-service bathroom at an in-park dude ranch he had done business with in the past. Though the bus had its own small bathroom, Vaillancourt said seniors were looking for a more comfortable place to stop. But no stop was made — Vaillancourt said the dude ranch had been warned that its license to operate would be revoked if it allowed the bus to stop. So the bus continued on to Livingston, Mont., a gateway city to the park.

Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#2 Oct 8, 2013
The bus trip made headlines in Livingston, where the local newspaper Livingston Enterprise interviewed the tour guide, Gordon Hodgson, who accused the park service of “Gestapo tactics.”

“The national parks belong to the people,” he told the Enterprise.“This isn’t right.”

Calls to Yellowstone’s communications office were not returned, as most of the personnel have been furloughed.

Many of the foreign visitors were shocked and dismayed by what had happened and how they were treated, Vaillancourt said.

“A lot of people who were foreign said they wouldn’t come back (to America),” she said.

The National Parks’ aggressive actions have spawned significant criticism in western states. Governors in park-rich states such as Arizona have been thwarted in their efforts to fund partial reopenings of parks. The Washington Times quoted an unnamed Park Service official who said park law enforcement personnel were instructed to “make life as difficult for people as we can. It’s disgusting.”

The experience brought up many feelings in Vaillancourt. What struck her most was a widely circulated story about a group of World War II veterans who were on a trip to Washington, D.C., to see the World War II memorial when the shutdown began. The memorial was barricaded and guards were posted, but the vets pushed their way in.

That reminded her of her father, a World War II veteran who spent three years in a Japanese prisoner of war camp.

“My father took a lot of crap from the Japanese,” she recalled, her eyes welling with tears.“Every day they made him bow to the Japanese flag. But he stood up to them.

“He always said to stand up for what you believe in, and don’t let them push you around,” she said, adding she was sad to see “fear, guns and control” turned on citizens in her own country.

- See more at: http://www.eagletribune.com/local/x1442580353...
Big Johnson

Columbus, OH

#3 Oct 8, 2013
Godwin says you lose.

Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#4 Oct 8, 2013
Big Johnson wrote:
Godwin says you lose.
Wrong, moron:

"...the tour guide, Gordon Hodgson, who accused the park service of “Gestapo tactics.”

You're not too bright, are you?

“Tenured Marxist Radical”

Since: Jan 13

Ivy League-ISIS

#5 Oct 8, 2013
Big Johnson wrote:
Godwin says you lose.
That's not how Godwin's law works.

The law simply states that as the discussion progresses, the probability of a comparison to Hitler/Nazis approaches 1.

It doesn't say that the first to invoke Hitler/Nazis loses the argument.
Blacklicks Only Poster

Reynoldsburg, OH

#6 Oct 8, 2013
Diamond Eugene wrote:
<quoted text>Wrong, moron:
"...the tour guide, Gordon Hodgson, who accused the park service of “Gestapo tactics.”
You're not too bright, are you?
The editor should have known better, but went for "sensational". I doubt Gordon Hodgson has a clue about real "Gestapo tactics".
Big Johnson

Columbus, OH

#7 Oct 8, 2013
You posted it, you own it, loser.

“Tenured Marxist Radical”

Since: Jan 13

Ivy League-ISIS

#8 Oct 8, 2013
Big Johnson wrote:
You posted it, you own it, loser.
Projection?
Tazzie

UK

#9 Oct 8, 2013
Wouldnt dream of going there look at the way the Rangers treated Yogie

Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#10 Oct 8, 2013
Big Johnson wrote:
You posted it, you own it, loser.
"Waaah!! I didn't read the article and George busted me as I looked like a foolish azzwipe for the umpteenth time."
Momma Johnson

Blacklick, OH

#11 Oct 8, 2013
-The-Artist- wrote:
<quoted text>
Projection?
You have no idea. Poor little fella.

“Not insane-mom had me tested”

Since: Apr 10

Location hidden

#12 Oct 8, 2013
Diamond Eugene wrote:
<quoted text>
"Waaah!! I didn't read the article and George busted me as I looked like a foolish azzwipe for the umpteenth time."
Ahh, Georgie, I've missed you!

Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#13 Oct 8, 2013
Bazinga wrote:
<quoted text>
Ahh, Georgie, I've missed you!
Aww, shucks. Thank you. It's been boring here lately. Hopefully that will change.

Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#14 Oct 8, 2013

“Not insane-mom had me tested”

Since: Apr 10

Location hidden

#15 Oct 8, 2013
Diamond Eugene wrote:
<quoted text>Aww, shucks. Thank you. It's been boring here lately. Hopefully that will change.
I've been sorta lurking, reading posts here and there, but have been swamped at work, so didn't have time to get back into posting. Where's Glitter hiding?

After my first post this morning, I was warmly welcomed back with a post from Bobbie who said, "Welcome back fatass." Just made my day.

Glad to see you're still fighting the good fight.
Enzyte Bob

Columbus, OH

#16 Oct 8, 2013
Bazinga wrote:
<quoted text>
I've been sorta lurking, reading posts here and there, but have been swamped at work, so didn't have time to get back into posting. Where's Glitter hiding?
After my first post this morning, I was warmly welcomed back with a post from Bobbie who said, "Welcome back fatass." Just made my day.
Glad to see you're still fighting the good fight.
Why don't you go find a treadmill or a sidewalk instead of sitting on your big fat ass all day typing on the computer?

Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#17 Oct 8, 2013
Bazinga wrote:
<quoted text>
I've been sorta lurking, reading posts here and there, but have been swamped at work, so didn't have time to get back into posting. Where's Glitter hiding?
After my first post this morning, I was warmly welcomed back with a post from Bobbie who said, "Welcome back fatass." Just made my day.
Glad to see you're still fighting the good fight.
Last time I saw Glitter was over a week ago. I think she posts early in the morning.
Bob is a constant...unwavering in his posts. Thank God.
One thing that's changed is that this place isn't nearly as challenging these days. Three a-holes from Akron have tried to hijack it and failed miserably...now they just cry and wail like little kids envious of the rest of the crowd.
Enzyte Bob

Columbus, OH

#18 Oct 8, 2013
Diamond Eugene wrote:
Bob is a constant...unwavering in his posts. Thank God.
We have to be constant and vigilant. When previous administrations used the government against their enemies, they mostly were aiming at other big wigs playing in the same sandbox.

This administration is different. It is targeting private citizens and that is a very, very, very dangerous precedent to allow to let stand.

Joe the Plumber, Dr. Ben Carson, Basselly Nakoula, the blatant lies about ObamaCare, the Journ-O-List media, the demonization of the TEA Party, and all the other scandals are a disgrace.

Even Sam Zell, the money initially behind the Ed Schultz radio show and no friend of the TEA Party, calls the targeting of TEA Party members a national disgrace. On CNBC, he asked whether it would be appropriate for a political party to demonize the ACLU to the same degree.

I was thinking about something this morning. All the petty insults to the taxpaying public ... are they really that incompetent or are they trying to gin up a revolt ... in order to maybe declare Martial Law or something to that effect. It sounds crazy, I know. But they are poking a very dangerous bear right now.

“Not insane-mom had me tested”

Since: Apr 10

Location hidden

#19 Oct 8, 2013
Enzyte Bob wrote:
<quoted text>
Why don't you go find a treadmill or a sidewalk instead of sitting on your big fat ass all day typing on the computer?
Would love to Bobbie, but sadly, I have to work. Sweetie, you can be hateful to me all you want; I just do not care. Why don't you get on your tricycle and ride to Cinci right now, okee dokee? Sounds like you need to burn off some excess meanness.

Since: Jun 13

Hilliard, OH

#20 Oct 8, 2013
Enzyte Bob wrote:
<quoted text>
We have to be constant and vigilant. When previous administrations used the government against their enemies, they mostly were aiming at other big wigs playing in the same sandbox.
This administration is different. It is targeting private citizens and that is a very, very, very dangerous precedent to allow to let stand.
Joe the Plumber, Dr. Ben Carson, Basselly Nakoula, the blatant lies about ObamaCare, the Journ-O-List media, the demonization of the TEA Party, and all the other scandals are a disgrace.
Even Sam Zell, the money initially behind the Ed Schultz radio show and no friend of the TEA Party, calls the targeting of TEA Party members a national disgrace. On CNBC, he asked whether it would be appropriate for a political party to demonize the ACLU to the same degree.
I was thinking about something this morning. All the petty insults to the taxpaying public ... are they really that incompetent or are they trying to gin up a revolt ... in order to maybe declare Martial Law or something to that effect. It sounds crazy, I know. But they are poking a very dangerous bear right now.
From another site this morning (no idea who wrote it):

"I haven't heard this possibility brought up, but that might be because I haven't read every post. It's been a very busy week, and Obastard is doing his best to overflow the piss-off bucket. But, a thought dawned upon me yesterday when I was reading a story in IBD about the next big scary deadline coming up, the Debt-Limit that we're supposed to hit on 10/17.

I think Obastard is being a total pr**k about shutting down parks, landmarks and private property because he's building up cred for a threat he intends to pull next week. He's lost a lot of credibility with his threats recently because, at least on the foreign scene, he's been shown to be rather, uh, "toothless."

What's the big threat? We're all expecting it so I don't think I'm shocking anybody when I say he intends to deliberately default on our bond interest payments. It's well known that he doesn't have to do that, and any normal business would ensure the bond-holders get serviced first, but I think he's planning to stiff the folks holding the debt, and that's us. Yes, the Chinese will take it in the shorts, but I think the Fed holds the biggest chunk of the debt these days. At least, they're the only fools buying it lately, since the S&P downgrade.

He's infuriating everybody right now for the same reason a battleship bombards an enemy before an invasion: To "soften us up." He would rather create mayhem the likes we haven't seen in my lifetime than try to get spending under control. He wants to deliberately crash the economy, and this is his big chance, all the while blaming the Republicans, especially TEA Partiers. We're all Emmanuel Goldstein now.

I see a golden opportunity to put troops in the streets, and dissidents in jail."

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