NANFA-- environment and the presidency (was not a chick flick..)

Jay DeLong (
Sun, 20 Feb 2000 12:31:05 -0800

No, I'm not offended Ray. I started it after all :-) If the next president
has to be a Republican, then McCain would be a better choice from an
environmental standpoint. But he's a threat to a strong ESA and
environmental protection also. I don't agree that Al Gore's views are
radical to the extreme. The question "What types of impacts can our
environment withstand?" has to be the focus as our nation continues to
deplete its resources and grow in population. The issue of who should
handle local issues- state or federal government- has been at the heart of
Republican and Democratic philosophical differences for as long as both
parties have existed. You bet I want the federal government handling the
salmon crisis here in my state. The state of Washington and other resource
managers bungled salmon management for decades, driving many stocks to
extinction and would have kept doing so had the ESA not been enforced.
They'd have kept developing land, building cities, harvesting fish, logging
watersheds, etc, until all salmon habitat was destroyed and more stocks were
gone and all we had left were hatchery stocks. Other rare species like the
Olympic mudminnow would have disappeared as well. Look what happened to the
western pond turtle here in Puget Sound--not coincidentally the most rapidly
developing part of the state. I've seen local fish management first hand
and it's pathetic. The only reason there is so much salmon restoration work
being done now is because the feds stepped in, and now everywhere people are
scrambling to develop programs and plans and committees and proposals and
more. Lots of these go under the label of "city" or "county" or "state",
but the driving force was the language of the ESA and the fed's authority to
enforce it.

A fundamental question is "Who owns the plants and animals of our nation?"
Is it the state they exist in, because at one point in time someone drew
some arbitrary lines through the landscape and called it Nebraska? No.
Politicians should have no right to destroy rare species and ecosystems.
There would be no Devils Hole pupfish today were it not for the ESA and the
federal government. Had it been left to the Arizona state government to
determine what was best for Arizona, that fish would now be extinct.

100 years ago, people like Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir worked to set
aside important national areas as National Parks to be preserved for all
citizens of the country. I believe we need a national perspective towards
species and species diversity. One day future earth citizens will mark the
day the ESA was signed as a significant landmark in the awakening of the
consciousness of the human race.

Jay DeLong
Olympia, WA

> -----Original Message----- > From: On Behalf > Of R. W. Wolff > Sent: Sunday, February 20, 2000 12:01 PM > To: > Subject: Re: NANFA-- not a chick flick... > > > No offense Jay, but would you prefer a radical veiwpoint of the other > extreme, like vice-president Al Gore? I believe if George W. Bush were > elected, he would let state agencies handle environmental issues, as it > should be. I don't think that it is the Presidents place to > dictate ( pun > intended) what all agencies should do, especially those at State levels. > Whats good for Virginia isn't neccasarily good for Wisconsin, and > whats good > for Wisconsin isn't necassarily good for Washington. Let's say > for the sake > of arguement that the new President was from the great lakes area. His > veiws on Salmon would reflect ( in most cases) what salmon are here, sport > fish and alewife control. Would you want this guy telling > Washington state > whats good for its salmon? The reliance of Federal government to take > care of state issues is a hot topic now, for reasons that are easily read > about in publications. I have not heard what Bill Bradley or John McCains > veiws on this subject are, but have heard Bill Bradleys are in > line with Al Gores. > Ray

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