And If You Did Know?

In Memory of Sharon Michele McAvoy Nichols .:. December 24, 1949 – October 10, 2005

July 14, 2005

The Land of OZ

Filed under: her words — mark @ 10:08 am

Controversial Attack on Endangered Species Act May Backfire
by Christopher Getzan in The New Standard 7/14/05

I was just reading a new news source and found an article that made me gulp. It is concerning the Endangered Species Act. It seems that :

“Jul 12 – A new bill being drawn up by Republicans on a key House Committee may severely curtail the government’s power to enforce the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and eventually do away with the landmark law.”

To me this seems like another power grab by Big Business. It seems that:

“Republican members of the House Resources Committee, which has legislative and funding oversight of the Endangered Species Act, are behind the new legislation. Insiders all agree that committee chairman and longtime critic of the ESA, Richard Pombo (R-California), is the draft bill’s driving force.”

“The mainstream League of Conservation Voters has given Pombo’s environmental voting record an average rating of just 3 percent for the last congressional term. Meanwhile, Pombo has been a steady recipient of largesse from the dairy industry, agribusiness, real estate interests, and energy companies – all industries in need of unencumbered access to large swathes of land.”

Just another day in the Land of Oz (read Congress). Someone who has proven links to Big Business is minding the store. Does anyone else see this as bad???

Another point made by Getzan in the article is:

“Jim Sims, former director of communications for Vice President Dick Cheney’s Energy Task Force and current head of Partnership for The West, a nonprofit organization that provides network and issue orientation for numerous businesses and groups that advocate for property owners, says the draft bill will permit greater flexibility in working with commercial interests. The “great majority” of such parties, Sims told TNS, “want to do the right thing” when they find endangered species on land they wish to develop or use.”

While the article was maddening, this one truly stopped me. To say that we should not have laws and regulations to deal with the ones who do not want to “do the right thing” is tantamount to saying that we should just get rid of all laws because the vast majority of people want to do the right thing. WHAT???? The whole point of having a government is so that the people who want an unfair advantage are kept within acceptable bounds internationally, nationally, and locally. This is not rocket science; it is however just business as usual in Merry Old Land Of Oz. I am amazed, not shocked, but amazed nonetheless.

The good news is that:

“Though Suckling of the Center for Biological Diversity considers the draft of the Recovery Act “completely consistent with every bill [Pombo has] submitted” related to the ESA, he recalled that Pombo had been talking about reaching out to more moderate Republicans on ESA issues. “If he had done so,” Suckling said, “[that] bill would’ve had much more of a chance of succeeding. I think Pombo has shot himself in the foot, and there are few people on the right or the left who will want to be associated with the bill.”

So some of the people in the Land are not willing to just roll over and smile. Good for them.

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