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Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides, and he is President of the Western Watersheds Project.

19 Responses to Bush pushes "road map to ruin" for Utah's public lands at end of Administration

  1. avatar jimbob says:

    This angers me on a level greater than just environmentalism. Is this no longer a democracy? Are the American people ruled by fascist representatives of the oil companies? The Bush/Cheney Republicans are a bunch of s.o.b.’s who have run roughshod over the country and its constitution while claiming to be protecting it. Whoever said “Love your country, but fear your government” had these folks in mind. Patriotism, public service, family values, love of God, less government—–all the things they proclaim to represent are a direct opposite of their actions. What a joke! The other thing that makes me sick is I heard somebody throw around the term “energy economy” to describe our economy a while back. I hope to God that doesn’t catch hold!

  2. avatar ChrisH says:

    I agree with jimbob. I am reading this just before leaving for work so I don’t have time right now to find out what, if anything, can be done. Most of that public land is too beautiful to be laid waste to.

  3. avatar john weis says:

    This final rush involves a hell of a lot more than just drilling and wolves…not that they are not important but…

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/10/30/AR2008103004749.html?nav=rss_print

  4. You are right, John.

    I personally pray (not literally) for 60, or maybe 65 Democratic senators because it will take acts of Congress to undue much of what this near criminal regime has done.

  5. avatar Salle says:

    Just goes to show that, given their past record and current actions, this administration is capable of little more than the “slime-bag politics as usual” mindset.

  6. avatar Wendy says:

    Is there nothing that can be done? Can’t this be stopped?
    Do the people of Utah want this?

  7. avatar Monty says:

    Jimbod, you said a mouthfull. How is it that some who attain the highest level of government positions have such distain for land ethics. These folks, who dwell under the dead weight of ignorance, continue to believe that it’s possible to consume and exhaust our way to a higher standard of living. Very depressing!

  8. avatar Salle says:

    Kind of reminds me of that gov. from Tennessee who was so mad about losing the election that he pardoned a whole bunch of convicts in a last-day-in-office temper tantrum. That’s not all he did, I just remember encountering a couple of released murderers on the road shortly thereafter-they were in the midst of a murdering spree at the time.

    It seems, to me, that the same flavor of temper tantrum mindset has overwhelmed our federal houses of government since Bill Clinton won office in ’92. As soon as this administration got in they wasted no time in trashing all the environmental protection policies many of us fought for, and we were doing it by the book and succeeding by way of due process.

    Due process is something you hear little about any more, mostly because it hasn’t been employed much since 2001.

  9. avatar JB says:

    Wendy asks: “Do the people of Utah want this?”

    Good question! Roughly 72% of Utah voters cast their ballot for GW Bush in 2004–a higher proportion than in any other state. Other than Salt Lake City and pockets in Moab and the Cache Valley, Utah is firmly under the rule of religious conservatives. It appears the right-wing religious zealots will let you get away with just about anything, so long as you oppose gay marriage and abortion.

  10. avatar Alan Gregory says:

    It’s not just the people of Utah who should be crying foul. It’s all Americans, regardless of their home state. Because we are all part owners of BLM-managed land – part of the Public Trust.

  11. avatar salle says:

    “It’s all Americans, regardless of their home state. Because we are all part owners of BLM-managed land – part of the Public Trust.”

    The sad part is that now, just as in the 1970’s, folks who live in close proximity to the public lands often feel that it belongs only to them because they live nearest to it.

    I’ve been dealing with that argument for a very long time now. Many residents in the Yellowstone area seems to hold that belief. They believe that any exploitation of resources on public land is their right due to proximity as well as the right to decide who can use it and how~rather than “outsiders” from “back east”.

    What IS needed is public education, the kind that addresses things like the commons and the public trust and civic duties and our responsibilities as citizens. It isn’t taught in schools anymore~I think that should change radically now, not later.

  12. avatar TimothyB says:

    Salle, the younger generation doesn’t want to get out into the wilds any more. This theory/fact has been seen in a few posts on this website. The change you advocate can only be brought about by encouraging the younger generation to discover what is available to them. I’m thinking that the web is a great place to start but there needs to be a website that shows them the good side of nature. Then there should be some formal education, when possible, to highly encourage wildlife viewing and things like that.

    I know the formal education thing works. I took a few classes in college offered by a professor who instilled a love of nature in me. He did this by showing us slideshow after slideshow of his outings into the wilds of the Western USA. He was my geology professor and probably the only “true teacher” I had in my 4 years of college.

    You are right about the need to teach “citizenship” (civic duties and our responsibilities as citizens) to children AND adults…It seems as if no one takes responsibility for their own actions anymore. This is easily seen by the shear numbers of lawsuits filed each year. The way I see it, there are very few citizens left in the US. Only people looking for the next target to sue.

  13. avatar Salle says:

    TimothyB,

    “It seems as if no one takes responsibility for their own actions anymore. This is easily seen by the shear numbers of lawsuits filed each year. The way I see it, there are very few citizens left in the US. Only people looking for the next target to sue.”

    That also has a lot to do with lack of civic education but also the conditioning we’ve been subjected to on TV, movies, etc., that portray the “victimhood factor” ~ as I call it. Most of the laws of this land are written to (supposedly) protect or favor the victim in a situation, therefore, everybody wants to be the victim-Americans like to be winners… It has become the underlying mindset that drives us, aside from the other element of such conditioning that tells us to believe that because we are Americans, we can have it all.

    To all of that my responses are:

    A) You may be an American, however, contrary to popular marketing strategies, you CANNOT have it all.

    AND

    B) What have you done for your country lately? (Besides military service).

    (Don’t get me wrong, I am well educated about military function, lived in the military for over 20 years but I object to the bullying attitude it promotes-like the idea that the US is “all knowing” about how everybody else should live and believe and what social/political structure they should have. As a cultural anthropologist, I object to the silencing of folks with my professional training in this field, but understand that this is due to the fact that such understanding of “others” debunks the demonization process necessary to promote wars. Wars are merely the result of failure to communicate on policies and belief structures between two or more cultures. And in this country in this time and place wars are also blatant commitments to the military industrial complex and other iron triangle components in our midst. hat mode of thinking just doesn’t “cut it” for me.)

  14. avatar brian ertz says:

    this administration is pretty shrewd – many rules take time – in other words, many of the rules clinton put into place were undone immediately upon bush taking office — they’re pushing these far enough out that obama’s administration won’t have an easy time undoing them.

  15. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Don´t know where else to post this: It´s Tuesday morning already in central Europe and the focus is fully put on the USA election now. Will history be written today? A thrilling issue of global impact! TV here in Germany will have a nonstop coverage throughout the next night. I´ll watch until falling asleep……

  16. I’m up at 2:30 AM here in Idaho. Can’t sleep!!

  17. avatar Maska says:

    And I’m up at 5:30 a.m. and on my way to my polling place, where I’m an election judge (i.e., a poll worker, for our German friend). We’re just hoping we won’t have to work more than about a 14 or 15 hour day. We’re expecting large crowds, although there were many early votes here in southern New Mexico.

  18. avatar john weis says:

    and more…..from the liberal press….felt good to cast my second vote for Obama today!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/04/opinion/04tue1.html?_r=1&em&oref=slogin

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Quote

‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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