yesterday i had some time to organize the bookshelf here in my office, and i went through the various publications and notes that jennifer had saved, getting rid of some and returning others to the shelves.
one item i kept, out of curiousity, was 'The Environmentalists' Little Green Book,' a booklet published in 2000 by the u.s. chamber of commerce, subtitled, 'a collection of extreme environmental quotes.'
flipping through it, here are just a few of the included statements from the radical enviro camp:
'we must reclaim the roads and the plowed land, halt dam construction, tear down existing dams, free shackled rivers and return to wilderness tens of million of acres of presently settled land.' - dave brower, friends of the earth founder
on environmentalism as a religion:
'Christianity is our foe. if animals rights is to succeed, we must destroy the Judeo-Christian religious tradition.' - peter singer, the 'father of animal rights'
'the right to have children should be a marketable commodity, bought and traded by individuals but absolutely limited by the state.' - kenneth boulding, originator of the 'spaceship earth' concept
'phasing out the human race will solve every problem on earth, social and environmental.' - dave forman, founder of earth first! adn member of the board of directors for the sierra club (1995-1997)
most of the time the radical enviros hide their bold messages behind politically correct statements, and what's acceptable to the public at the time, and i think sometimes we in the livestock industry can forget they're there, and what their intentions really are. that is, until something like last week's deal between western watersheds project and the el paso pipeline company surfaces.
the nuts and bolts of it are that the company has agreed to pay western watersheds and an oregon enviro group $20 million in exchange for their dropping any complaints or lawsuits about the routing of a pipeline from western wyoming to oregon. if that doesn't say their real motive is money, i don't know what would. but western watersheds claims they'll use their $15 million share to purchase and retire federal lands grazing permits, which isn't even legal. the only way someone can keep a grazing permit right now is to actually graze cattle on the allotment, and we can be sure they're not going to do that.
western watersheds leader jon marvel says his goal is to 'destabilize' ranching to the point where ranchers 'get so mad and miserable they quit the business.'
i'm not trying to say looking after natural resources - the grass and greenery and rivers and soil - is unimportant, it's just not all-important.
there are always good operators and bad operators, no matter what the industry, and i think in the last decade livestock managers and natural resource agencies have done a great job in stepping up and making sure grazing plans are in place, water developments are available and that they leave the land better than when they began. wyoming is leading that charge, with ranch families from the state frequently winning the environmental stewardship award on a regional and national scale, which allows them to showcase their family ranches and how they work to sustain them for the next generations. it seems like every time we turn around there's another prime example of a wyoming individual or ranch doing something good for the environment.
why don't the enviros work alongside them, instead of against them? if all their money were put directly onto the land instead of into federal courts, lawyers, offices and litigation, everyone would be a lot less frustrated and a whole lot better off. and so would the land and water.