Everyone agrees that environmentalism has been hit out of the ballpark by "Wise Users' and Republicans. But no one knew why we'd whiffed until Glen Martin of the San Francisco Chronicle did an analysis. Deconstructing his article (it used to be called reading between the lines) shows that Greens spend too much time hiking and not enough time watching the sports channel ESPN. As a result, we can't understand our critics, let alone counter them.
Martin starts by quoting William
Mulligan, manager of federal relations for Chevron: "It's like a
football game. The industrial sector spent years on defense, then
the ball was punted; now we're on offense."
Arnold, Mr. Use-Up-The-Public-Lands, is right there with Mulligan,
a spit away from the environmentalists' goal line, mixing metaphors
but keeping the pressure on:
environmentalists kept moving the goal posts farther and farther
back. Nothing was ever good enough for them. It's that endless
jockeying with the goal posts that has alienated the public."
And Bruce Anderson, the "crusty publisher" of
the Anderson Valley Advertiser over in Mendocino County, Calif.,
Environmentalists are seen as "a
privileged group of people who don't have to hit the ball the same
way rural blue-collar people have to hit the ball."
Is there hope for environmentalists, who seem to
lack a long-ball hitter, a good passing game, and a grounds crew
that knows where the goal posts belong?
it's clearly the last of the ninth and no one is on base. But
Michael Sherwood, a lawyer for the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund,
is at bat, deep in Martin's article. Unfortunately, although he
appears to know he's in some sort of sporting event, instead of a
bat he's wielding a law book. He tells Martin:
"Right now, the game may depend in large part on
looking at the fine points of the law."
She may be in touch
with the universe, but she's bucked karma for the moment and is
pissing off people on the ground in Santa Fe. Through a tri-party
land trade, the Santa Fe Conservation Trust recently managed to
turn over to the Forest Service five private inholdings on Atalaya
Mountain overlooking Santa Fe - all except one tract belonging to
an eccentric and moneyed hold-out: Shirley MacLaine. Rumor says
she's hired local attorney Earl Potter, champion of tricky
developments, and an architect to design her a house close to the
The devil, they
say, is in the details. How does one transfer ownership of several
hundred thousand square miles of land in the West to the states?
Very carefully, even if you are Rep. James V. Hansen of Utah.
Hansen opens his federal lands transfer bill, H.R. 2032, bravely
"Subject to valid existing rights and
except as otherwise provided in this Act, the Secretary of the
Interior shall offer to transfer all right, title, and interest of
the United States in and to all lands and interests in lands
administered by the Bureau of Land Management to the State in which
such lands and interests are located."
that rocket-like start, Hansen turns chicken (there is no other
word). He gives the governors two years even to ask for the lands.
And no cherry-picking: They have to take all BLM land in their
state, or nothing.
Having given them two years
to ask for the land, and having said nothing about how quickly the
secretary of Interior must respond, Hansen then makes absolutely
sure that he and everyone associated with passing H.R. 2032 will be
long gone, should a transfer ever happen:
transfer of lands under this Act shall be effective with respect to
a State on the date which is 10 years after the date on which the
offer to the Governor is accepted."
bill is like the national debt: something we are burdening our
wouldn't be surprised: Lake Powell is full of s--. At least that's
what the National Park Service says. Cows and 2 million human
visitors a year have overwhelmed the 30 million acre-foot pond, and
several beaches have been closed to "full body immersion," which
the Moab Times-Independent says means swimming.
The problem is the rising lake, which is
covering land where human and cattle waste have been buried. The
National Park Service asks that visitors use restrooms, portable
potties, or a bucket filled with kitty litter.
Tourists bored with hiking
or rafting the Grand Canyon may soon have a new option. The Arizona
Republic reports that a California company is designing an
80-passenger blimp - complete with dance floors, bars and a casino
- for commercial flights over the canyon. Tickets would cost $300
to $800 for an eight-hour ride; perhaps that could be won back at
Sen. James McClure, whom environmentalists once saw as an enemy, is
now a lobbyist fighting to help the Endangered Species Act. McClure
told the Associated Press he certainly doesn't want to gut the act.
The change he supports "preserves the protection of the species,"
but would no longer allow the act to be used for other purposes.
The clients who are paying McClure to lobby for a stronger
Endangered Species Act include Boise Cascade, Coeur d'Alene Mines
Corp., Idaho County Light and Power, Idaho Mining Association,
Idaho Power Co. and Idaho's Wilder Irrigation District, according
to the Associated Press.
Salt Lake Tribune says the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance has
hurt all of conservation. In an outraged Aug. 13 editorial, the
daily charges that SUWA over-reacted to the Eco-Challenge, in which
350 people "shed sweat and blood in the sandstone and rivers of
southern Utah for 10 days last spring." Except for sweat and blood
getting on rocks, southern Utah emerged from the experience better
than ever, the Tribune said.
Despite this, SUWA
won't acknowledge the wonder of the event.
paper says it is all part of SUWA's "deceptive extremism," in which
it argues for wilderness as a tool for economic development, and
then opposes using that wilderness for events like the
gambling. The Navajo Nation has a safer bet - the tried and true
old blue. According to the Navajo Times, Navajo president Albert
Hale just signed an agreement allowing an Arizona clothing company
to use the Navajo name on its bluejeans. If the new line, retailing
for $40 and $55, does as well as the firm's cheaper Arizona line,
the tribe's take could be in the millions.
"Ed Marston, Elizabeth
Manning, Diane Kelly
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