09 April 2015

Keep Public Lands Public: Oppose Budget Amendment SA 838

The Senate, that august body of rich white people, recently passed a budgetary amendment that "backs support for and funding of state efforts to take over federal land". In these matters the amendments themselves can be very difficult to parse so it is easiest just to follow the money: who is supporting the bill, and why?

As it happens the bill is supported exclusively by Republicans (which is not necessarily bad), and lobbied by organizations backed by ExxonMobil and the Koch brothers (which is terrible). This has less to do with states rights than it does with Big Business wanting to cut down every last tree and drill whenever, wherever.

Let's be clear: the reason the federal government controls public land is because no one wanted it. The BLM was created because somebody had to take care of all the open, empty wild spaces so they didn't turn into wastelands or dumps. Now Big Oil and Big Kochtopus want to give the land rights to the states (who were never interested until very, very recently) so that they can buy it at discount prices and turn it into wastelands and dumps, because: fuck you John Q. Taxpayer. 

This quote from John Muir tells the story very well - they should print it on money:

'God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand straining, leveling tempests and floods; but he cannot save them from fools'

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