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Crafting Crucial Conversations Conference Atlanta Georgia August 3, 2016




Atlanta, Georgia

August 3, 2016

Michael G. Sabbeth, Esq.


As Presented at the Conference










Table of Contents 




Introduction. 4

I will talk about: 4

To begin I share three  anecdotes. 5

The environment 5

Clarity: 5

Motivation: 6

Black rhino:  a case study. 6

Priscilla Feral and the gazelles. 7

Quote: Thomas Pain. 9

Caring, compassion and Empathy. 10

Gunnison. 11

It’s Not Natural! 11

Black Rhino and Feral: Who Has Compassion?. 12

Rhetoric. 13

Examples; 13

Gun Control 13

Gun Culture. 14

Safari: 14

Trophy hunting. 15

Moral Clarity: A Socratic Dialogue. 15

Sensible gun laws. 17

Debating. 17

Crucial Conversations 17

Fighting back. 18

Sandy Hook. 18

Cecil 19

Poaching in Botswana: 21

Craig Boddington. 22

Unity and Katie Couric. 22

Churchill quote. 23

Lessons: Fighting Back. 25

Author quotes and analysis. 25

James Swan. 25

Concluding Thoughts 26






I am honored to be among you

So many insightful comments and perspectives… I have tried to integrate many of your comments into this talk


You have devoted much of your lives to conservation, writing, hunting  advocating for hunting rights. I am a relative newcomer

Words are needed for conversations. I am here to share my thoughts on how to have effective conversations; persuasive conversations; conversations that advance our goals.

Words can persuade toward virtue and words can subvert virtue.

words spread truth and words spread lies. I

 I hope, to advance and defend hunting.

It is my hope Russian hackers who are hunters will take interest in these files on my computer.


I will talk about:

The environment in which we must operate

Factual and Moral Clarity

Rhetoric with an emphasis of not surrendering the language to our opponents


How to Use Compassion, Kindness and Altruism to Refute Anti Hunters

Arguments for Fighting Back

Katie Couric, Cecil the Lion and the Black Rhino Auction in Dallas

And some concluding thoughts

To begin I share three anecdotes


Mgs hunting kudu in Natal,  S Africa… with Marcus Luttrell   my only big game hunting experience

Lady Colorado Division of Wildlife

The Worm Story


The environment

John Storm: change is constant. Yes, but some things do not change. Human nature does not change. And that is important to us in crafting our messages.

Vanity, narcissism, wanting to do good but wanting to take the easy route… all that has not changed.

An era .. a culture where oten truth does not matter;

-where consequences do not matter

Political Correctness: the emphasis is on the political, as in George Orwell’s prescient 1946 essay Politics and the English Language : it’s about politics and politics is about only one thing… one thing: power: who has it and who does not; who controls others; who can hurt others and who cannot. Who defines the permissible language.




Clarity is vitally important. Clarity should precede agreement or disagreement because clarity illuminates values, contradictions, moral strengths or moral flaws of an argument or policy.

Only when you can master the moral and Intellectual foundations of an argument can you fully defend it or craft strategies to refute the argument.

Non hunting Examples:

minimum wage

If you favor a minimum wage, you favor increased unemployment for minorities and youth generally


 that was discussed.

Here are some thoughts

We are judged, according to many of our speakers, in part by our motivation for hunting.

Should we permit such a standard of judgment without fighting back?

If food from hunters is distributed to the needy, is the motivation of the hunter morally relevant?

If a village gets cleaner water from the fees of the hunter, is the state of mind of the hunter morally relevant?

Why is motivation important?

Why do they get to judge the merit of our motivation?

We have to fight that.

My point: why give the anti hunter authority to define the rectitude of our behavior?


Black rhino:  a case study

Such a powerful illuminating example on many levels…

I wrote an article for Fair Chase Magazine Boone and Crockett, Black Rhinos and Strong Horses: A Template for Applying Persuasive Arguments

I interviewed Simeone Niilenge Negumbo, the Republic of Namibia’s Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism and his colleague, Elly Hamunyela, Namibia’s Deputy Director of Wildlife Utilization.


Aged rhino; non reproductive; was destroying other rhino and other animals; was destroying property; the money from the auction would be used for anti poaching programs, clean water programs, land reclamation, schools, and so forth.

Those are the facts.


Angela Antonisse Oxley of Dallas, who was recruiting opponents to protest on Saturday, the evening of the auction, asserted it was barbaric to hunt and kill an animal just because it was old and unable to reproduce. Ms. Oxley’s assertion merits scrutiny.

Here is how I deconstruct her words.

Her character, her integrity—and those who think like her—are discerned not only by what she thinks is barbaric but by what she thinks is not barbaric. Herein lies the strategy for gaining moral clarity of her beliefs and which offers the most persuasive method to refute her positions.


Clarity: they prefer impoverishing children and consuming dirty water, increased poaching  and, by the way, killing the animals rather than get money from a hunt of one animal in a very unique class. Those are the consequences; There is no argument.


We now know with clarity their values.  That must be our message…


Priscilla Feral and the gazelles

The three species of African antelope — the scimitar-horned oryx, the addax and the dama gazelle — are already nearly extinct in their native Africa. But they are thriving on the plains of Texas, mostly on ranches where hunters pay thousands of dollars for the privilege of hunting them.

Priscilla Feral on TV program: Sixty Minutes:  I would prefer they all die rather than inhabit their non-natural habitat in Texas

Since 2005 an exemption to the Endangered Species Act has allowed ranchers to raise the three species, and hunters to stalk them, without a special permit. In all, Texas ranchers had about 1,800 of the animals in 2004. With the exemption in place, those numbers swelled to more than 17,000 by 2011.

CBS News aired a “60 Minutes” feature story about the controversy on Jan. 29. Priscilla Feral, president of the animal rights group Friends of Animals, told correspondent Lara Logan that she has waged a seven-year legal battle to get the exemption overturned.

Thank you, by the way, for the epic legal work done by our own Anna Seidman and the SCI legal team for defeating Ms. Feral’s legal attack.

: Feral was  using Danae’s word, blunt. And

about as subtle as having Lucca Brazzi wearing a tutu and dancing in Swan Lake ballet

-now, she may be vicious; she may be spiteful; she may hate animals… but whatever else she is, she is clear…

This, I suggest, comprises our strongest arguments in defense of hunting…

This should have been our finest hour

We should have spoken confidently…. Aggressively… and as any trial lawyer and any communications expert knows, confidence trumps content…. … that is not a political endorsement…

Confidence scares off people who are uncertain, which is most of humanity most of the time.

As Osama Bin Ladn pontificated, people prefer a strong horse to a weak horse. We became weak, I suggest.

Instead, we became defensive, reacting, letting the anti hunters define the context; frame the issues…

We missed an opportunity


Here’s a key point: we aggressively counter attack and refute the Oxleys and Ferals, not because we expect to change their opinions, but to influence the vast middle… the people who are open to reason, to facts, to logic, and who care about animals.

That is our target audience … not the strident anti hunters

A few thoughts here:

Quote: Thomas Pain

To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead. Thomas Pain


And, as we lawyers say, It is pointless to argue with a person whose living depends on disagreeing with you.

And, in terms of persuasion, As a general proposition, people do not thank you for pointing out how stupid they are.

Here is the skill: focus on the consequences – not the platitudes.. that’s how we can make the best arguments to defend and advance hunting and be most credible for that vast middle ground


 focus on reality; not abstractions;


Nature is not a Rousseau painting, where the lion lays down with the lamb waiting for a meal of tofu and steamed broccoli

We need to be practical; to think practically: What the Greek philosophers called practical reasoning: phronesis:

Here’s a joke that illustrates phronesis:

Here’s a joke that embodies practical reasoning.

Our’s is prettier

Don’t wear anything expensive


Caring, compassion and Empathy


Every form of addiction is bad, whether the narcotic be alcohol or morphine or idealism. Carl Gustav Jung

Barbara Oakley: Cold-Blooded Kindness,   a study of a murder of her husband by a woman who took advantage of people’s decency: P. 206


But, as polymath science fiction writer David Brin observes, this feeling of certainty can feel so good that it can sometimes become an addiction. We can see this addiction first hand in self-righteous people, who are keen to wallow in the wonderful feeling that they are right and their “opponents are deeply, despicably wrong. Or that their methods of helping others is so purely motivated and correct that all criticism can be dismissed with a shrug, along with any contradictory evidence.” Good intentions don’t somehow elevate us above this personal conundrum.


We can be accused of this defect also.. but the accusation is fallacious. We seek truth; we act based on consequences; we make corrections when evidence dictates. That’s the difference between us and them.

And also: p. 212

McGilchrist goes on to point out that left-hemisphere dominance seems characterized by “denial, a tendency to conformism, a willingness to disregard the evidence, a habit of ducking responsibility (and) a blindness to mere experience in the face of overwhelming evidence of a theory.”



Here are some quotations that provide a useful framework to think about the rhetoric of caring and compassion:


“Evil is never done so thoroughly or so well as when it is done with a good conscience.” Blaise Pascal,

Recently wrote an article on this topic for Scott’s Mountain Hunter Magazine


The rhetoric of Compassion Caring, Empathy: these are the current God like terms in our culture’s nomenclature… caring… I feel your pain… not caring is the equivalent of child molestation or not recycling aluminum cans…


–deer and elk freezing; starving; hunters and Colo Div Wildlife made heroic efforts to feed the animals asked for help from so called animal rights groups, so called conservation groups — they all refused to help: they gave primarily 2 reasons for refusing to help:

         Why should we help you save animals that you are going to kill?

         It Nature’s way


Let’s examine the arguments:

Kill animals.. how many? Which will yield more animals?

Nature’s way: an orthodoxy they don’t believe

It’s Not Natural!

Romanticized notion of Nature: the lion sitting with the lamb, as in a Rousseau painting, waiting for a dinner of tofu and steamed broccoli

Nature is death; Nature is disease; Nature is starvation; Nature is cruelty


If they get cancer, get into a car crash, get attacked during a crime.. they don’t care about Nature anymore. They want the best medical care; unrelenting prosecution of their attacker;

They made a calculation.. a moral and financial calculation.. that they would prosper better if the animals died

Why do they make such false arguments?

Because they work

They are Darwinian: they survive because they are useful

Why do such false arguments survive?

Because, in part, we have not been effective in refuting them and shaming them and humiliating them.

The argument: who has compassion? Hunters or so called animal rights group?

The hunters have compassion and the anti hunters choose to kill the animals.

That’s the argument


Black Rhino and Feral: Who Has Compassion?


That’s the argument we must make: the facts are on our side; morality is on our side; consequences are on our side. We just need to step up our game in the rhetoric field.


True, most people want to do something; they want to do good. But wanting is not enough. And here is a point we must make: motivation does not matter. Either you do good or you do not do good.

A person is morally responsible for the logical consequences of his or her policies and beliefs.

They want to do good, so they say, but they are actually doing harm.

We can state this message gently or harshly, but the message must be communicated. Intent is not enough.



Mark Duda said “It’s not what you say that counts; it’s what people hear.”

Well, he’s technically correct. But certainly what you say and how you say it dictates in large measure what people hear.

Aristotle’s teachings on rhetoric: ethos, pathos, logos: focus on the audience

Rhetoric is persuasion. But it’s a lot more:

It’s how to refute; how to stop an argument; how to counterattack


One of the hunter education instructors I interviewed said this regarding the anti hunter: first, shut them up, then push them back and then have a reasonable conversation.

That requires skills in rhetoric




Gun Control

What does the phrase mean?

Wayne LaPierre: I told him.. the NRA should present itself as the most effective gun control organization in the nation…

So should the NSSF etc..

What does the phrase mean?

What is the effect when we commit to using words that have no meaning?

Who opposes gun control?

The rhetoric exhibits the logical fallacy of the Straw Man argument: it creates a false target and then seeks to gain moral authority and intellectual credibility by destroying the false target.



Armed teachers is not the answer: logical fallacy: strawman argument: it is not the answer.. true… but the question is: is it a partial answer?


Gun Culture

Put with Gun Culture and Michael Corleone…. The Molinari family guaranteed Fredo’s safety…

It is dangerous to use phrases that have no meaning; it is more dangerous to allow people to demagogue by using phrases that have no meaning.

I think of the scene in The Godfather when Michael Corleone responds to Moe Green’s challenge to ‘talk business.’ Michael Corleone: “The Corleone family bankrolled your hotel; the Molinari family guaranteed Fredo’s safety. You want to talk business, let’s talk business.”

You want to talk about gun culture then let’s talk about lots of cultures. Let’s talk about the culture of dependency; the culture of fatherless families, the culture of violence Each one of the cultures leads to social decay and crime, including crimes with firearms.

So, you want to talk culture, let’s talk culture. If you can make such a rhetorical connection, I assure you the only culture your opponent will want to talk about is the culture in yogurt!


Evidently safari now has a negative connotation

Our responses:

Safaris save animals

Safaris provide for schools

Safaris feed needy people


We have to be very cautious when we allow opponents dictate what words we can use. Recall Orwell and political correctness


Trophy hunting

The word ‘trophy’ seems to be causing a lot of misery for us, especially when the word precedes ‘hunting.’

Well, there are sports trophies; even trophy wives, and now we have trouble with trophy hunting.


What does the phrase mean?

Ponder this:

If you kill an animal and give the meat to the needy, is that trophy hunting?

Think of my words regarding motivation

If you kill an animal and thereby allow for greater reproduction by younger male animals, is that trophy hunting?

If you hunt and consume the meat but mount the head etc on the wall, is that trophy hunting?

If killing an animal thereby helps sustain a village, is that a defilement of the animal?

If not, what is the stigma to trophy hunting?


Moral Clarity: A Socratic Dialogue

         You want to preserve the animals?

         You are in favor of policies that preserve the animals?

         Preserving the animals is your main value?

         You are against trophy hunting because it slaughters the animals for no purpose than to display it and you think it reflects the hunter’s vanity?

         If I demonstrated that hunting saves the animals, would you change your mind about hunting?

         Give data

         If the animal is eaten, does it matter if the animal is eaten by the hunter?

         Do you now accept the reality that a trophy animal for one participant may be needed food for another participant?

         Do you accept that trophy hunting preserves animals?

         Do you now accept trophy hunting as legitimate?

So: ponder this: you are accused of being a trophy hunter.

Your response: damn right, and proud of it.

There effect: defang the attack; take away their power.

The anti goes apoplectic: I’m trying to insult you and you agree with me?

Perhaps my next article will be: Proud to be a Trophy Hunter!!


Again: the danger here is allowing the anti hunter to control our language.


And for whatever it’s worth, not using the word ‘trophy’ won’t change the minds of the anti hunter. Most likely, they will see us as weak. Strong horse and all.


Dealing with Wayne Parcell strategy: in the debate, changing topic to lying tobacco experts. How dare you!!

How dare you make a moral equivalence between shooting an animal and methodical lying about human health.


Andy Dufresne

We have to find the wit and will to break through the rhetoric of the mass culture, kind of like Andy Dufresne slogging through all that sewage in the Shawshank Redemption…. We might have to get a little dirty…


Sensible gun laws

reasonable gun controls;

We are using words and phrases that have no meaning; thus, they mean whatever the audience wants it to mean; it’s like tofu… you make out of it anything you want

Again, words that have no meaning… this is important to understand, because it affects our ability to persuade and to get people over to our side or at least make people neutral who previously were opponents:


Example: in a debate: I have seen.. pro gun pro hunting people with more brains in their urine sample debating anti hunting / gun folks and they get creamed… I saw it.. how people from the audience gathered around the anti speaker and ignored the better informed and better qualified pro speaker… because the anti spoke in terms of being reasonable and sensible.. and who stated, I think gratuitously, that he really didn’t want to restrict gun rights.

There is a point to be learned here: debates: don’t do it.. unless you have extraordinary skill. Don’t enter a debate with the mindset: we’ll each tell our side and we’ll let the audience decide. That’s a recipe for total disaster. It’s a model for losing. Don’t enter a debate unless you totally confident you can destroy the opponent as if you ran him or her trough a Cuisinart. Anything less is a defeat.

You are a murderer!

How can you kill those beautiful animals?

Do you know how many animals there would be if you hunters didn’t kill them?

You knuckle dragger clinging to your guns and your religion and your anti immigrant sentiments!!!

That question was thrust in the face of a hunter education instructor friend of mine. He had the good sense to grittily reply: Zero. He shut her up.

Crucial Conversations

Here’s the point: if we are going to have conversations, crucial or otherwise, then we better have a method, a goal, a measure whether our conversations are effective and we better be persuasive. That is, we better win. Otherwise, the conversation has not advanced our cause: defending and advancing hunting.

We must use the language of compassion, caring, empathy; being offended; saving lives; helping little children; developing clean water systems; Describe ourselves as animal rights activists.

We propose fair rules and policies; reasonable rules and policies.

Fair and reasonable are words that have substantial rhetorical power.

Use them


Fighting back

Sandy Hook

Just because there’s a subtext doesn’t mean the actual text isn’t important.. and the killings were horrific and needed to be addressed on their own terms.. and then the subtext had to be addressed

I suggest our response should have been : what can we do to join forces .. with anyone… any group… to increase the odds of preventing this from ever happening again… we’re all in this together. We are all parents and someone’s children.

We are always reacting.. on the defensive… the shootings—Orlando, San Bernadino, Sandy Hook, Charleston Church… our response should be;

         We are open to any argument that will advance policies that will reduce or eliminate these horrific killings

         We will work with any organization .. whether we have agreed or disagreed with them in the past… that will help create policies that will eliminate or reduce the likelihood of such horrific actions

         We are willing to reassess any positon, any policy, any argument, that we have advanced in the past in order to reduce these horrific crimes

         We want reasonable controls; things that work; common sense solutions… use the language of the attacker…. Sensible controls

         We want what works


Wasn’t done

Talk about the economic impact of hunters, gun purchases, rights, Second Amendment are not effective responses.

And that’s what it should be when the next psychopath does something horrible



The analogy Cecil is the Twin Towers of Big Game Hunting

Very powerful


Cecil: should have been our greatest triumph; could have been our finest hour…

I call it the lost opportunity


Walter Palmer: a dentist; an employer; a tax payer; a conservationist; a man who spent tens of thousands of dollars hunting and thereby preserving animals…

Class warfare


He tracks a wounded lion 14 hours or so… .and it was legal…

True: one of the audience made the very astute point: we didn’t know the facts, so we didn’t respond as quickly.

But not knowing the facts didn’t stop the anti hunters and immediately the attack reached tsunami force

Our response: we should have been more agile with our rhetoric.

So, we should have immediately shifted from the specific—Cecil—to the general:

We don’t know the facts… but:

Have you ever seen a lion starve to death?

What do you value more? An aging lion or food for a village?

An aging lion or medicine for a village?

An aging lion or anti poaching efforts?

We should have challenged them immediately: What are your values?

Why didn’t we ask the questions:

         Have you ever seen a starving lion?

         Ever see a lion die from hunger or disease:

         Ever see a lion ripped apart to death by younger lions?

         Ever seen the huts and shacks these natives line in?

         Ever drank dirty water rather than your Perrier or what have you?

         You will be able to think of better questions. Let’s use them… stop the anti hunters in their tracks; get them out of their comfort zone;

         Speak in terms of their moral weaknesses and inconsistencies

         These are people who would rather feel good than do good.

         Clarity: do you want animals to survive?

         Would you agree that policies that increase the survival of animals are good policies?

         Do you accept that people who enable animals to survive are doing good deeds?

         If a ban on hunting or a ban on importing ivory or a ban on importing animal skins led to more deaths of animals, would you still support the ban?

This would have been the textbook case of shutting them up, pushing them back and then offering to have a reasonable conversation.


                     I Am Cecil:   Jes Sui Charlie…

                     Smug middle-aged woman carrying a poster: “I Am Cecil,” a vile loathsome leeching a moral stance off the dead and wounded in the Charlie Hebdo Magazine attacks by muslim killers on the publishing office in Paris, France, January 7, 2015, and the #JeSuisCharlie” placards. Contemptible loathsome moral leeching.. a country she never heard of; the life cycle of an animal she knows nothing about;

                     And the point here: people believe so intensely in matters in which they are totally ignorant.

                     How much has she contributed to conservation? How many impoverished natives of Zimbabwe did she elevate?


                     The perverse morality of affluent leisured westerners arrogantly unconcerned about the consequences of their policies.

                     They attack us on our photos.. we should have done the same with this moral outrage .. in this unique instance.


The problem with Cecil.. we stopped.. we were first and goal on the three-yard line and we stopped; we didn’t get the argument over the goal line.  A few great essays, editorials, newsletter commentary… and we stopped… we didn’t make the best arguments and we stopped; we lost an opportunity. Will we be ready for the next opportunity?

And here is the key message point:

And now the self righteous airline bans… why don’t we have a unified message: Lufthansa or whatever kills more lions than a hundred Walter Plamers!!


Poaching in Botswana:

The poachers’ camps; the landowners will poison; the farmers will kill them. Allowing hunters to take their trophies ensures much needed monetary input into these very very poor countries who derive an incredible amount of revenue from Elephant and Safari hunters alike. Not to mention the 10s of thousands of lost jobs. The hunting and import of ivory by sport hunters is a win / win scenario. The ban on ivory imports by viable Sport Hunters is a lose / lose. It’s that simple. Hunters stop poaching- Not governments

-everyone in this audience knows of the poaching that flourishes as soon as a hunting ban is enacted.

Why didn’t we have a unified aggressive policy position on that?

Our messaging should have  been:

Poachers love hunting bans!!

Poachers Thrive; Animals Die!!!


Craig Boddington

Craig Boddington explained that the leopard populations have rebounded with estimates of between 700,000 and 2 million animals, which increase is specifically the consequence of the value that hunters have placed on the leopard.


Unity and Katie Couric

Katie Couric’s execrable loathsome deliberate altering interview footage of gun owners…

Katie Couric accused of deceptively editing gun documentary

May. 26, 2016 – 2:22 – Gun rights activists seem to have difficulty answering questions in the film

“Under the Gun,” Monday.

“I take responsibility for a decision that misrepresented an exchange I had with members of the Virginia Citizens Defense League,” Couric said in a statement.

At one point in the film, Couric asks the Virginia Citizens Defense League, “If there are no background checks for gun purchasers, how do you prevent felons or terrorists from purchasing a gun?”

Read more:

Strategy Note: VCDL President Philip Van Cleave …Other scenes in the documentary, says Van Cleave, “accurately” represent the input of his fellow gun owners. But not the exchange on background checks. Van Cleave says he has audio of the entire interview with Couric — a backstop against bogus editing that he learned from his dealings with the media. “I do that as a matter of course when I’m doing things like that,” says Van Cleave. “It has saved me a few times.”

And then the obligatory apology when caught.. but the damage is done…


TV does not illustrate reality

The manipulate the media; they lie; the omit and edit. They are bereft of ethics and integrity. They abuse the public trust. They are not there for illumination and education. They are there to destroy us; to humiliate us. If any of us cannot grasp that reality, it is best that person has no conversations at all.

And any of our spokespersons who cannot grasp this reality will hurt us.

Katie Couric lied.. people died…


Churchill quote

Churchill; the lie travels halfway around the world before the truth gets out of bed in the morning.


Gives us all a black eye

And Tom Opre’s statement: we are no better than our lowest common denominator:

Tom, with respect, I gently disagree

What is the message: that we hunters give moral legitimacy to be judged and attacked by the worst hunter offenders.

We would be saying.. I am no better than the worst out there.

I agree to have every hunter judged by the measurements of the worst among us.

I don’t accept that


Imagine what would happen if a thousand lawyers attending an American Bar Association conference were told: if even one of you overcharges a client, we all have back eyes!!

Are you kidding me or what?

The lawyers would rush the stage and beat the speaker to death with his $1,000 Italian shoes!!


What should hunters nurture this suicidal impulse?

As any trial lawyer would do, We should acknowledge our shortcoming, condemn bad behavior and then move on.

Don’t condemn the mass collectively.


I was part of a discussion several years ago at a conservation organization near Chicago. Beautiful place. Some unethical hunter did something terrible.. I forgot what… and the torrential self-flagellating began: this hunter gives all of us a black eye.


Not at all.

What other profession, activity, field of endeavor would accept that categorization? None


Only we can give ourselves a collective black eye.

Like the common trope from anti hunting anti firearms folks: The NRA gets blamed for crimes none of its members commit.


Lessons: Fighting Back

Lesson: this should have unified every gun and hunting related organization, newspaper, magazines, speaker, lecturer, writer…

If Wayne LaPierre says it, fine… if NSSF writes an  email to its members, fine… but if twenty million twitter, facebook, websites, have a unified message; a powerful confident hard-hitting message, then you have something..


Make them pay a price for their dishonesty.. that makes the cost increase and we will get less of their dishonesty.


Issue: do we have the brain power to identify these opportunities and then use them to advance our cause?

If not, how do we get that brain power?


Author quotes and analysis

James Swan


“We need to nourish ourselves with meaning as much as with food, especially in a modern world where meaning continually seems to be set aside in the name of convenience, progress and conformity…… In the act of hunting, we rekindle what Carl Jung called our “ancestral soul,” which is that primal part of us shared with all human history.”


“As the Hunter’s Moon rides across the autumn sky, the pulses of nature quicken, and so too do the souls of humans, even among those who do not hunt. What is right for one time, place, and person may not be appropriate for another. The primal energies of the hunt live it within us, as well as in the natural world around us, and they can be expressed in many ways. Our personal challenges to learn to do the right thing for us to be whole, individually and as a society. In learning how to respond to the magic and mystery of hunting in modern times we may find important keys to happiness, health, and peace, as well as ecological balance and proper relationship among species. The hunt can be a great teacher of much more than just the technique of killing.”

Concluding Thoughts

-you are part of a larger process.. the big picture.. you are helping manage wild game.. helping preserve wild game.. you are keeping the culture alive; you are keeping the animals alive…have your clients see the big picture… elevate them… in your advertising, your brochures….

Part of the big picture is learning how to use words; and using those words to craft winning arguments and to refute immoral or illogical arguments. If we don’

My opinion: if you want to change hunter’s behaviors, appeal to their honor; to their integrity;

-make them aware of the big picture: that their actions will influence whether or not hunting survives.

Thus, we must be unrelenting, inexorable, unified, unapologetic, confidence is more persuasive than content…

Our conversations must have a purpose. Winning the conversations; converting people to our cause with our conversations; defending and advancing hunting and our heritage are the goals of the conversations. Thought, skill and preparation are the foundation for effective persuasive crucial conversations.

I hope my words have helped toward those important goals.

Thank you.


Michael Sabbeth

Michael G. Sabbeth is a lawyer in Denver, Colorado. He lectures on ethics and rhetoric. He has written the book “The Good, The Bad and The Difference: How to Talk with Children About Values.” & is now working on a book titled “No More Apologizing! Arguments to Defend and Advance Hunting and the Shooting Sports.”