Two posts ago, on March 20th, a commenter named Lewis informed us all that Hoppe's, maker of Hoppe's No. 9 gun solvent, and other stuff, was going out of business in June, due to high operating costs and environmental concerns. He sent along a link to something called usnewswire.com that supposedly carried the story. It all sounded very believable.

But I was puzzled, because an old firm like Hoppe's going toes up would be big news, and I hadn't heard a thing. I clicked onto usnewswire and couldn't find any mention of it. I spoke with a friend who edits a magazine about the shooting industry, and he hadn't heard diddly. I called Bushnell, which owns Hoppe's and was assured that Hoppe's was in fine health, and would be around for some time to come. The only change was that it had been moved from Oregon to Kansas.

In other words, reports of Hoppe’s death were greatly exaggerated, and if you spread them on your garden they will make your roses grow. Never believe anything you hear, especially if it comes from the government or a major corporation or a professional sports team. Never believe anything you read in a magazine.

One of the things I’ve learned in this business is, if you want people to believe your lies, you have to make them whoppers. You want something so outrageous that people could never believe you were making something like that up. So here are a few. Have fun!

Chuck Schumer to shoot at Camp Perry
Hillary Clinton supports "right-to-carry" laws
New York Times admits in editorial, "NRA was right all along"