Items by Jon Margolis

New monuments: Planning by numbers
The Interior Department's decision to go ahead and manage the new monuments established by Clinton raises cautious optimism among the environmental fraternity - the caution due to Norton's emphasis on local involvement: miners, grazers and motorheads, for
Campaign finance reform may boost grass roots
The campaign finance reform bill sponsored by John McCain and Russell Feingold won't solve everything, but it may give grassroots environmental groups a bit of an edge in future political battles.
Yucca Mountain debate goes nuclear
The battle over storing nuclear waste at Nevada's Yucca Mountain is heating up in Congress as well as in Nevada and the West.
The Arctic: A slave to luck
In ordinary times, Interior Secretary Gale Norton's lack of honesty about the impact of oil development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge would make headlines.
Jeffords proves the West is part of the USA
The power shift in the Senate caused by John Jeffords' exit from the GOP won't turn the world upside-down but does rock it, as Western conservatives suddenly lose chairmanship of committees.
An energy plan as solid as natural gas
President Bush's much-heralded energy plan is extremely vague, but its vagueness may be the document's strong point, the writer opines.
Bush administration blinks on roadless rule
Republican attacks on the national forest roadless rule, although supported by a federal judge, still may backfire in a country that shows ever-increasing environmental concern.
The environmental movement is a-muddle
Conservation organizations and activists are suddenly feeling lost and lonely in Washington, D.C., in the new, anti-environmental world of George W. Bush and friends.
The power of love, and its opposite
Activists should be worried because President George W. Bush is surrounded by people who scorn and disdain environmentalism.
Weirdness abounds in Washington
His choices of Gale Norton for Interior Secretary and John Ashcroft for Attorney General show that George W. Bush has already abandoned bipartisanship.
A 'most improbable scenerio' has come to pass
HCN's political columnist considers the recent, weird and not-quite-finished election, and suggests that if George Bush turns out to be the winner, he will have to govern from the middle, which could prove good news for the environment.
CARA's not quite the girl she used to be
Despite its tremendous original support, CARA (the Conservation and Resource Act of 1999) has come through Congress much changed and reduced.
In presidential politics, the West has a bad hand
A longtime political observer explains how it is that a huge region like the West has a rather minimal influence on national presidential elections.
Remembering an establishment revolutionary
Remembering the late John Sawhill, president of the Nature Conservancy, whose unique blend of environmental fervor and ability to schmooze with the rich helped to make his group the nation's largest conservation organization.
Can 'property rightsniks' stop a popular bill?
The Conservation and Reinvestment Act of 2000, which would guarantee permanent funding for 15 years for buying land for conservation, has broad support but still faces an interesting dance through a complicated Congress.
The U.S. isn't dead yet
Despite all the anti-federal talk, especially in the West, the government is still in place, and still trying to do its job.
Protesters raised the right questions
After the World Trade Organization protests ended in Seattle, Wash., questions remain about global trade, environmental issues and the way the world is changing.
In this election, the West is lost
Western issues and environmental issues in general don't seem to be visible on the political screen in Washington, D.C., even as the presidential race heats up.
In Washington, the emperor is on Babbitt's side
In Washington, D.C., Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt battles Western Republicans over the use of the 1906 Antiquities Act to preserve Western land for the public.
Do you want more wilderness? Good luck
Despite growing public support for more wilderness, Congress is unlikely to add any acreage, for a variety of political and even philosophical reasons.
Never underestimate a working majority
The working majority in Congress enforces or ignores Rule 16 as it pleases - the rule that prevents policy-making amendments being added to appropriations bills.
The quiet Takings Project is trespassing on democracy
The Takings Project and its mastermind, law professor Richard Epstein, are trying to put a stop to any federal or state regulation of business and property, and despite their flawed reasoning, many conservative judges are under their influence.
New twist in an old law has everyone screaming
Solicitor John Leshy of the Interior Dept., an expert on the 1872 Mining Law, has the industry screaming and politicians in turmoil over his decision to enforce a long-neglected provision of the law, which allows only a few acres per mining claim.
Congress searches for a 'green conspiracy'
In a spirit of overreaction reminiscent of McCarthyism, Alaska Republican Don Young sets up a task force to investigate what he calls the "Warner Creek Timber Sale Eco-terrorism" - a protest on the Willamette Nat'l Forest in Oregon resulting in arrests.
Take the green elephant off the endangered list
Republican environmentalists are making a comeback in Congress.
Beware Alaskans bearing gifts
Conservative Alaska Rep. Don Young is sponsoring a bill to buy more land for the public domain, but environmentalists are not cheering.
The West of the '90s is the South of the '60s
The Republican Revolution may be stalled in the rest of the country, but the Rocky Mountain West remains a stronghold for GOP hard-liners.
Defensive GOP cleans up its budget act
After weeks of bluster and deal-making, Republicans quietly dropped 30 or so anti-environmental riders to the appropriations bill.
Congress avoids buying public land
The Land and Water Conservation Fund is tied up in politics and milked to balance the budget, rather than spent to purchase public lands as it was intended to do.
These legislative riders sit low in the saddle
Republicans have attached a barrage of anti-environmental riders to unrelated legislation coming before the Congress, and Democrats seem unsure how to respond.
High Country News Classifieds
  • PLANNED GIVING OFFICER
    National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), the nation's oldest and largest national parks nonprofit advocacy organization seeks a Planned Giving Officer. Do you find energy in...
  • DEPUTY DIRECTOR
    The Methow Valley Citizens Council has a distinguished history of advocating for progressive land use and environmental values in the Methow Valley and Okanogan County...
  • ACTING INDIGENOUS AFFAIRS DESK EDITOR
    High Country News is seeking an Acting Indigenous Affairs Editor to oversee the work of our award-winning Indigenous Affairs Desk while our editor is on...
  • GRANTS PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    The Cinnabar Foundation seeks an enthusiastic, team-oriented and knowledgeable Grants Program Director to work from their home in Montana. Established in 1983, the Cinnabar Foundation...
  • ARTEMIS PROGRAM MANAGER
    The Artemis Program Manager will work with National Wildlife Federation sporting and public lands staff to change this dynamic, continue to build upon our successful...
  • ALASKA SEA KAYAK BUSINESS FOR SALE
    Well-known and successful sea kayak, raft, hike, camp guiding & water taxi service. Sale includes everything needed to run the business, including office & gear...
  • MEMBERSHIP AND EVENTS PROGRAM COORDINATOR
    Great Old Broads for Wilderness seeks a detail-oriented and enthusiastic Membership and Events Coordinator to join our small, but mighty-fun team to oversee our membership...
  • PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT FACILITATOR
    ABOUT THE HIGH DESERT MUSEUM Since opening in 1982, HIGH DESERT MUSEUM has brought together wildlife, culture, art and natural resources to promote an understanding...
  • LAND STEWARD, ARAVAIPA
    Steward will live on-site in housing provided by TNC and maintains preserve areas frequented by the visiting public and performs land management activities. The Land...
  • DEVELOPMENT WRITER
    Who We Are: The Nature Conservancy's mission is to protect the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we create...
  • CONNECTIVITY SCIENCE COORDINATOR
    Position type: Full time, exempt Location: Bozeman preferred; remote negotiable Compensation: $48,000 - $52,000 Benefits: Major medical insurance, up to 5% match on a 401k,...
  • EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT
    ArenaLife is looking for an Executive Assistant who wants to work in a fast-paced, exciting, and growing organization. We are looking for someone to support...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Mountain Lion Foundation is seeking an Executive Director. Please see our website for further information - mountainlion.org/job-openings
  • WASHINGTON DC REPRESENTATIVE
    Position Status: Full-time, exempt Location: Washington, DC Position Reports to: Program Director The Western Organization of Resource Councils (WORC) is seeking a Washington, DC Representative...
  • REGIONAL CAMPAIGN ORGANIZER
    Position Title: Regional Campaign Organizers (2 positions) Position Status: Full-time, exempt Location: Preferred Billings, MT; remote location within WORC's region (in or near Grand Junction...
  • DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
    Driggs, ID based non-profit. Full time. Full job description available at tvtap.org. Submit cover letter and resume to [email protected]
  • ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSTRUCTION GEOPHYSICS
    - We find groundwater, buried debris and assist with new construction projects for a fraction of drilling costs.
  • SPRING MOUNTAINS SOLAR OFF GRID MOUNTAIN HOME
    Located 50 miles northwest of Las Vegas, Nevada in the pine forest of Lee Canyon at 8000 feet elevation. One of a kind property surrounded...
  • MAJOR GIFTS MANAGER - MOUNTAIN WEST, THE CONSERVATION FUND
    Cultivate, solicit and steward a portfolio of 75-125 donors.
  • NATURE'S BEST IN ARAVAIPA CANYON
    10 acre private oasis in one of Arizona's beautiful canyons. Fully furnished, 2123 sq ft architectural custom-built contemporary home with spectacular views and many extras....