Magazine
Taking Liberties

July 24, 2006

The Western states are home to a stealth campaign by libertarians who – under the guise of reforming eminent domain – are out to destroy all land-use planning through "takings" ballot initiatives. Also in this issue: Even as Western states debate the best way to look after their roadless areas, logging, drilling and mining are already happening on some formerly protected lands.

Feature

Taking Liberties
The Western states are home to a stealth campaign by libertarians who – under the guise of reforming eminent domain – are out to destroy all land-use planning through "takings" ballot initiatives

Sidebar

'I call (regulations) land stealing ...'
Dorothy English weighs in on the pros – and cons – of Oregon’s Measure 37
'It's clear out of control ...'
Bill Roses weigh in on the pros – and cons – of Oregon’s Measure 37
'I kick myself for being so naive...'
Ted Schroeder weighs in on the pros – and cons – of Oregon’s Measure 37
Takings campaigns around the West
A detailed graph sums up the status of the current "takings’ initiative campaigns in six Western states
'Great recreation value ... and great economic value...'
Jim Miller weighs in on the pros – and cons – of Oregon’s Measure 37
'I hope other states don't do this ...'
Renee Ross weighs in on the pros – and cons – of Oregon’s Measure 37

Editor's Note

November Surprise
Ray Ring’s cover story on the libertarian stealth campaign to put "takings" initiatives on Western ballots is the biggest untold political story of the year

Uncommon Westerners

Raul Grijalva relishes a good fight
Arizona Congressman Raul Grijalva loves fighting for old-fashioned liberal causes like immigration rights, the environment, unions and strong social programs

Essays

Prey at the waterhole
The experience of watching a mountain lion is utterly transformed when the watcher realizes he is the one being watched

Book Reviews

The merry — and meditative — farmer
In Blithe Tomato, Mike Madison writes engagingly about working the land on a small farm in California’s Central Valley
A world built on groundwater
In Ogallala Blue: Water and Life on the Great Plains, William Ashworth examines the effects of groundwater dependency in a dry land
Dust in the wind
In his new book, The Worst Hard Time, Tim Egan interviews survivors to tell the story of the great American Dust Bowl on the southern Great Plains in the 1930s

Perspective

Dems contract case of self-delusion — or not
The Democratic bloggers on the netroots seem to be prone to wildly optimistic self-delusion – and then again, maybe they’re not so crazy after all

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
"Pit bulls with flippers" in Newport Beach; mountain lion problems; Lewis the Cat; don’t try this on the highway; Fighting Sioux fight for sports team name

Dear Friends

Dear friends
Summer editorial retreat, global warming booklet is here, lots of summer visitors

News

As states ponder protection, roadless forests unravel
Western states debate the best way to look after their roadless areas even as logging, drilling and mining move in on formerly protected lands
The Latest Bounce
New Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne junks Gale Norton’s controversial Park Service proposal; New Mexico’s Nantac Mexican wolf pack killed; Justice Department removes Judge Royce Lamberth from Indian trust case
Failing Bay-Delta may take a living fossil with it
Even as raising sturgeon for caviar takes off in the San Francisco Bay-Delta area, the region's wild sturgeon are in serious trouble, along with the rest of the Bay-Delta’s ecology
Saving open land — a taxing problem
In Missoula, Mont., and other Western communities, activists search for the winning formula to pass new open-space bonds in November
Falcon's future rests on a definition
Endangered aplomado falcons already in New Mexico may lose protection under a controversial Fish and Wildlife Service plan to release captive-bred birds as a "nonessential experimental population."
Watch the river flow
Farmers and conservationists have reached a settlement that allows water to flow in California’s San Joaquin River, home to the Friant Dam

Letters

High Country News Classifieds
  • ANCESTRAL LANDS ADMINISTRATIVE MANAGER
    Starting Salary: Grade C, $19.00 to 24.00 per/hour Location: Albuquerque or Gallup, NM Status: Full-Time, Non-Exempt Benefit Eligible: Full Benefits Eligible per Personnel Policies Program...
  • GRAND CANYON DIRECTOR
    The Grand Canyon director, with the Grand Canyon manager, conservation director, and other staff, envisions, prioritizes, and implements strategies for the Grand Canyon Trust's work...
  • ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
    Great Old Broads for Wilderness seeks a part-time Administrative Assistant to support the organization's general operations. This includes phone and email communications, office correspondence and...
  • HISTORIC LODGE AND RESTAURANT - FULLY EQUIPPED
    Built in 1901, The Crazy Mountain Inn has 11 guest rooms in a town-center building on 7 city lots (.58 acres). The inn and restaurant...
  • ONE WILL: THREE WIVES
    by Edith Tarbescu. "One Will: Three Wives" is packed with a large array of interesting suspects, all of whom could be a murderer ... a...
  • PROGRAM DIRECTOR, SALAZAR CENTER FOR NORTH AMERICAN CONSERVATION
    The Program Director will oversee the programmatic initiatives of The Salazar Center, working closely with the Center's Director and staff to engage the world's leading...
  • WILDEARTH GUARDIANS - WILD PLACES PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    Salary Range: $70,000-$80,000. Location: Denver, CO, Portland, OR, Seattle, WA, Missoula, MT or potentially elsewhere for the right person. Application Review: on a rolling basis....
  • RIVER EDUCATOR/GUIDE + TRIP LEADER
    Position Description: Full-time seasonal positions (mid-March through October) Organizational Background: Colorado Canyons Association (CCA) is a 10 year old nonprofit organization fostering community stewardship of...
  • BOOKKEEPER/ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
    Position Description: Part-time, year-round bookkeeping and administration position (12 - 16 hours/week) $16 - $18/hour DOE Organizational Background: Colorado Canyons Association (CCA) is a 10...
  • LAND STEWARD
    San Isabel Land Protection Trust seeks a full-time Land Steward to manage and oversee its conservation easement monitoring and stewardship program for 42,437 acres in...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    Ventana Wilderness Alliance is seeking an experienced forward-facing public land conservation leader to serve as its Executive Director. The mission of the Ventana Wilderness Alliance...
  • COMMUNICATIONS AND DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
    The Quivira Coalition (www.quiviracoaltion.org) is a Santa Fe-based nonprofit that builds resilience on arid working lands. We foster ecological, economic, and social health through education,...
  • GRANT WRITER
    "We all love this place we call Montana. We believe that land and water and air are not ours to despoil, but ours to steward...
  • DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
    The Development Director is responsible for organizing and launching a coherent set of development activities to build support for the Natural History Institute's programs and...
  • WILDLIFE PROJECT COORDINATOR
    Founded in 1936, the National Wildlife Federation (NWF or Federation) is America's largest and most trusted grassroots conservation organization with 53 state/territorial affiliates and more...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Cinnabar Foundation helps protect and conserve water, wildlife and wild lands in Montana and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem by supporting organizations and people who...
  • TRUSTEE AND PHILANTHROPY RELATIONS MANGER,
    Come experience Work You Can Believe In! The Nature Conservancy in Alaska is seeking a Trustee and Philanthropy Relations Manager. This position is critical to...
  • OLIVERBRANCH CONSULTING
    Non-Profit Management Professional specializing in Transitional Leadership, Strategic Collaborations, Communications and Grant Management/Writing.
  • GREAT VIEWS, SMALL FOOTPRINT
    Close to town but with a secluded feel, this eco-friendly home includes solar panels, a graywater reuse system, tankless hot water, solar tubes, and rainwater...
  • COMMUNITY ORGANIZER- NORTHERN PLAINS RESOURCE COUNCIL
    Organize with Northern Plains Resource Council to protect Montana's water quality, family farms and ranches, & unique quality of life. Starts $35.5k. Apply now- northernplains.org/careers