I appreciated your coverage of the coalbed methane controversy in your latest issue (HCN, 9/2/02: Backlash). However, despite your usual dose of comprehensive analysis, I noticed one glaring absence * where is Colorado Rep. Scott McInnis in all this?
Given Mr. McInnis' tireless advocacy for local control (when it comes to forest policy), his zealous antagonism to well-financed outsiders who overwhelm a process with their litigious behavior (when it comes to environmental groups), his gut-level distaste for federal bureaucracy and heavy-handed government (when it come to environmental regulations), and his homespun paternalism directed toward his salt-of-the-earth constituents (when it comes to photo opportunities), I thought that surely he would be taking the lead to help local communities slay the litigious, outsider, well-financed, predatory carpetbagger beast that is the coalbed methane extraction industry.
So, where is he? It appears to me that he has dodged this issue, and its uncomfortable ironies, quite well so far. It is about time that the press and his constituents find out where he stands, and when he plans to ride to their rescue.