Friday, February 11, 2005


I just spent an hour writing a post on the Endangered Species Act which I then promptly lost when my computer locked up as I went to publish it. Stinking technology.

Anyway, I was writing in reference to this article in the Bend Bugle, out of Bend, OR. The article basically reports that 2 Republican Senators and 2 Republican Representatives are starting a new effort to change the Endangered Species Act, purportedly to improve it. In effect, I argued that given that at least one of them, Greg Walden of Oregon, has a long history of unflinching support of the water users in the Klamath Basin, I suspect that he likely has little concern for endangered species. The Klamath basin is an excellent example of the many ESA cases that involve zero-sum conflicts between natural resources users and endangered species. Given a limited amount of water to serve the needs of irrigators and endangered fish species, one has to lose.

If Republicans want to make sure that its the species that lose, then why don't they just say so? If they want to gut the ESA, then say that. If they merely want to put in ESA exemptions for rural communities then say that. I'm an adult, and so is every other voting-age American. Tell us the truth about what you'redoing, and let us decide. This bullshit about selling people an idea is just that, bullshit. Sell them (and me) on the merits of a legislative proposal, not on pretty rhetoric.