Hot headed Idaho politics

Western Watersheds Project has been taking some heat from Idaho state legislator Bert Brackett – not to mention his politicians in Washington. Here is Western Watersheds Project’s response.

And here is a picture of a sign erected in WWP’s honor near what remains of the Murphy Complex Fire.

Added Aug. 10. The Idaho Fires were recently a part of Greenfires’s diary on the Daily Kos. Idaho Burning.




  1. sal Avatar

    Yup, the nation of victims… always need to blame someone else for whatever victimhood they perceive as theirs. And, as usual, the faces in the mirror, should they choose to look, would be theirs. Denial is the advocate of blame and victimhood. oh well.

  2. kt Avatar

    Everyone needs to remember that over HALF the BLM land in the Jarbidge is grazed by billionaire J. R. Simplot with a series of cattle ranches reliant on the public welfare grazing and cows punched by a series of “hired men” who are typically Cattle Baron wannabes — and various Brackett family members.

    So – if these signs are on public land, and BLM were to consider this to be littering – — I wonder whose door they would knock on to give them a ticket? Mr. Simplot Rep. Bert Brackett? Maybe Mr. Brackett could spend some of the near-million $$$ we tax payers have already handed him in the Idaho Juniper Butte Bombing Range non-Buyout.

  3. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    Jon Marvel got famous by walking up to self-important state legislators, ranchers, BLM managers, even state AGs and governors, and telling them the truth in a non-profane, but blunt manner.

    That Brackett and others would respond is hardly unexpected.

    I got to wonder how many cows he lost in the great cheatgrass fire of 2007?

  4. Phillip D. Avatar
    Phillip D.

    Although I do not know much about this wildfire, it seems to me after reading what Mr. Marvel and Rep. Brackett have said. Rep. Brackett is not that smart.

  5. kt Avatar

    Mr. Brackett screaming so loud because he is angling to get Larry Craig and Mike Crapo to do a Rider or promote legislation that opens the door to near-lawless grazing in the Jarbidge – and potentially across BLM lands all over the West. The Murphy Complex and other “range” fires are being used by cattlemen to try to get pliant western politicians to do their bidding. It’s time for the public to say No – these are our public lands – not your private cattle feedlot … the DKos Diary Ralph has linked to explains how quickly the politicians have fallen into line with Timber and Grazing industry demands.

    Brackett is also trying to get hunter groups to believe his spin – that MORE, MORE, MORE Brackett and Simplot cows on the Jarbidge public lands will solve everything.Yes, it wil indeed solve everything – there will be no wildlife left out there – as is the case in portions of the Jarbidge where BLM has done just that – increased grazing use, seeded exotics = wildlife wasteland.

    He is also setting the stage for the politicians and the Bushies (including Kempthorne and now Caswell) to spend millions of $$$$ on planting exotic cattle food grasses and building more fences and cow projects with fire rehab dollars — rather than on restoring the land for antelope, sage grouse, bighorn sheep.

    Remember, Larry Craig has micro-managed BLM in Idaho for a long time, even before the fire, and Brackett is again counting on his politician buddies to do the cattle industry’s bidding.

  6. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    . . . and, of course, Larry Craig is saying the fire was due to the the fact that Western Watersheds Project sued and as a result of their success Federal Judge Winimill got the parties together and imposed a few conditions on grazing.

  7. kt Avatar

    You know, just like the Idaho politicians War on Wolves is used to distract us all – and especially the MEDIA – from many other pressing environmental issues – the Brackett caterwauling – and the MEDIA lapping it up – is being used to distract the public from the fact that the hand full of large and wealthy Jarbidge ranchers had already destroyed much of the Jarbidge sage grouse, antelope and other habitats BEFORE the Murphy Complex Fire. HERE is what BLM found in early July, essentially that the Cattle Barons of the Jarbidge were already killing out native wildlife with their relentless grazing damage:

  8. kim kaiser Avatar

    Read up a bit on this Simplot person(s)

    Rhey use 10 times more blm land than land they own.

    From their website

    “Simplot Ranching Operations”

    The Land and Livestock Group of the Simplot Company manages 15 ranches. These ranches are located in Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Utah. Our ranches comprise one of the largest cow/calf operations in the United States, with a capacity for 30,000 head of mother cows.

    We rank second out of the top 10 cow/calf operations in the United States. We run a variety of breeds, depending on the terrain they will graze in, but mainly Angus cross.

    We run on a variety of lands, including United States Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and private lands that range from trees, to shrubs, to meadows, to desert, to irrigated pastures.

    These ranches consist of 273,246 deeded acres and 2,327,568 acres of public land managed by the BLM and U.S. Forest Service–in all, about twice the land area of the state of Delaware.”

  9. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    I think Jon Marvel made a fine response on the politics of the situation in hist post to the WWP blog.

    Restoring Our Public Lands Need not include livestock

    And I want to add that cheatgrass in not natural to the area, nor are cows or domestic sheep. Cows do not fulfill the function that bison used to perform in the area because it was very marginal bison habitat, and the SW Idaho high desert did not burn very often. The grasses and forbs that grow (or grew) in this country were grazed by deer, elk, bighorn sheep, and rodents, and in a much different pattern than cows or sheep do it.

    I say this because the notion is promoted that cows fit in the same ecological niche as did bison.

  10. jimbob Avatar

    It’s comforting to know that our legislators have an open mind and EVERYBODY’S(!) best interests at heart. Bert Brackett sounds exactly like a man I wouldn’t even want to talk to, much less have him representing me and making decisions that affect my kids’ futures! It’s even more comforting to know he ain’t the only one! God help us all!

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Brian Ertz