Systematic Interference with Science at Interior Department Exposed

This story has appeared in a number of newspapers. This one is from the Union of Concerned Scientists about the actions of BushCo at the top of the Dept. of Interior.

“High-ranking political appointees within the Department of the Interior have rewritten numerous scientific documents to prevent the protection of several highly imperiled species under the Endangered Species Act.” Read the rest in this article

Here is more about the matter from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, plus a story about “habitat conservation plans” (part of the ESA) and the problems with them. HCAs were a not-so-great innovation of the Clinton Administration.

In the election tomorrow, for the sake of their country and the outdoors, I hope Americans will reject those candidates who have disrespected science so much over the last six years.






  1. Alan Gregory Avatar

    We’re about to kick Rick Santorum out, for starters, here in PA.

  2. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    He seems to have taken a very anti-science stance, good.

  3. Rick Hammel Avatar
    Rick Hammel

    Ahh, the light is beginning to come through. Two of these species whose listings were altered, were the greater ssage grouse and the white-tail prarie dog. And what industry would be most significantly affected by their listing, besides ranching? Oil and gas, who has the most clout of any industry under Bushco.

    Afer tomorrow, those petitions should be revisited!

  4. Mike Avatar

    I saw some recent poll numbers that look really great! CNN as of today has the Dems up 20 points, Newsweek has them at 16 up.

    I also saw Tester up by 7 in Montana in todays polls.

    Like you say, I really hope the anti-science crowd is thrown out, and pro-public lands representatives are installed in their place.

    I hear Idaho of all places has races that are much closer than previously thought.

    Here in Illinois things are looking good except for Hastert’s numbers. But if all goes well, he will be the House minority leader, and as we all know that means nothing at all.

    How hard is it for Interior Department heads and the heads of the USFS workers to just do the right thing? It amazes me the troubles they go through to do the exact opposite of the right thing. Clearly they are some very crooked people.

  5. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    Because they have been out of power, it’s hard to know what the Democrats will stand for if they are elected to be the majority party.
    I have come to think that the governing coalition (the various wings that make up the Republican Party) is quite unique in that they reject the idea that there is, in fact, a public interest. How often does the President say “the public,” as opposed to “Americans,” ” the people,” etc.? He defines us by our status as part of a nation rather than our status as citizens.
    Despite the contention by cultural conservatives that absolute Truth exists, their quest for power follows the rule of “say anything that works regardless of its truth.”


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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Ralph Maughan