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Know the West

There's no free lunch

  Dear HCN,

Hypocrites. How many times have we heard the demand that the extraction industries (mining, grazing and logging) pay fair market value for the use of public resources. The cry goes forth from those that supposedly care about the West, "why should citizens shoulder below-cost subsidies for special interests." In fact, it is well known that recreation is the biggest "use" in the New West. Why should the rest of us foot your recreation bill (HCN, 2/14/00: Land of the fee)?

User fees are right, user fees are fair; those who use - pay your fair share.

Michael D. Bloomquist
Washington, D.C.