Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Is about legacy - II

This is almost like my previous Owyhee is going to happen because it's about legacy. But I never mind to get repetitive where it helps to gain certainty. Otherwise, it's Malheur where the Bundy militia challenged the federal government in an armed standoff. This is why this proposed monument is so interesting.
Phil Taylor (E & E) {

Date = February 16, 2016
Source = Refuge occupation muddies bid to protect Ore. canyonlands

But a monument designation should be a no-brainer for Obama, other conservationists said, as it would cement his legacy of preserving lands for future generations to enjoy. With an Owyhee designation, Obama would likely pass President Clinton for the second-most acres preserved using the Antiquities Act. President Carter enjoys a healthy lead at No. 1.

Obama has invoked the Antiquities Act 22 times and set aside nearly 4 million acres. Clinton designated 5.7 million acres, and Carter designated about 54 million acres, all in Alaska (see related story).

"The question is, did the Bundy's really win something?" said Andy Stahl, executive director of Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics. "If I'm the administration leaving office, I'd say, 'Hell no!'"

Proponents have two main arguments for designating the monument despite local objections.

First, the Owyhee Canyonlands area is owned by all 320 million Americans, not just the 31,000 people in Malheur County or the 7,000 in neighboring Harney. The designation enjoys broad support nationally, and the president was elected to represent all Americans, they argue.

"It's called a national monument for a reason," Stahl said. "It's not a Malheur County monument."
Here comes an indirect reference to the intra state urban rural divide - state capital siding with the fed government over rural areas.
Second, Obama won Oregon handily in the 2012 election, edging Mitt Romney by 12 percentage points thanks to Democratic support in heavily populated Portland and other coastal areas. While a monument designation would make him even more unpopular in rural eastern Oregon, it's not going to jeopardize his party's standing in the Beaver State.

Plus, the Antiquities Act offers Obama unfettered power over a Republican Congress that has stymied his major environmental initiatives and a Supreme Court that recently blocked his signature Clean Power Plan to combat global climate change.

"This is low-hanging fruit for an administration that's going to have a hard time filling its fruit basket," said Stahl.


It's unclear whether the White House is actively considering the Owyhee proposal.

But the Malheur occupation is unlikely to sway Obama, Kerr predicted.

"Monuments are good politics," he said. "But especially they're good legacy." }