Fact or Fiction

There are honest, good politicians.

Planned Grazing: A Study Guide and Reference ManualAnd you talk about being mis-informed? I almost decided to NOT blog this article because of that idiotic statement. Unless you are a hard core statist and logically challenged, you can’t help but see the logical conclusion (that politicians are a criminal class) of Franz Oppenheimer’s The State, originally published in Germany in 1908:

“There are two fundamentally opposed means whereby man, requiring sustenance, is impelled to obtain the necessary means for satisfying his desires. These are work and robbery, one’s own labor and the forcible appropriation of the labor of others.

Robbery! Forcible appropriation! These words convey to us ideas of crime and the penitentiary, since we are the contemporaries of a developed civilization, specifically based on the inviolability of property.

And this tang is not lost when we are convinced that land and sea robbery is the primitive relation of life, just as the warrior’s trade – which also for a long time is only organized mass robbery – constitutes the most respected of occupations.

Both because of this, and also on account of the need of having, in the further development of this study, terse, clear, sharply opposing terms for these very important contrasts, I propose in the following discussion to call one’s own labor and the equivalent exchange of one’s own labor for the labor of others, the “economic means” for the satisfaction of needs, while the unrequited appropriation of the labor of others will be called the “political means.” (pp. 24-25)

Via the American Lands Council

“If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.” – Mark Twain

A Handbook for Ranch ManagersBiased media. It seems to be the norm these days. In reality, it has always been the case that choosing where to get your news is the most crucial determining factor in what news you get…so choose carefully.

Today, I want to share with you a current example in the world of the Transfer of Public Lands. Two articles came out this week following an Idaho press conference where Speaker Bedke and other state officials spoke about the results of their current research and their plans to continue that research, as well as to watch what happens in Utah, whose legislation is further along than other states.

Environmental & Natural Resource Economics: The Austrian ViewThe first article we read in The Spokesman, and definitely leads the reader to believe that the state study found that no one in the state would support a transfer of public lands. Why? Because Idahoans value access to their public lands. Never mind that the people did not say they don’t want the transfer of public lands to the state. They only said that they don’t want to lose access to the public lands. This article chooses to leave out the fact that the Speaker of the House made it very clear that if the state manages the lands, access would improve. This article leaves a distinct negative taste in the reader’s mouth concerning the possibility of a transfer of public lands to the state.

The Essence of Liberty: Volume I: Liberty and History: The Rise and Fall of the Noble Experiment with Constitutionally Limited Government (Liberty and ... Limited Government) (Volume 1)  The Essence of Liberty: Volume II: The Economics of Liberty (Volume 2) The Essence of Liberty: Volume III: A Universal Philosophy of Political Economy (Liberty: A Universal Political Ethic) (Volume 3) From the same press conference came another article, this time written by Magic Valley. This article gives a much clearer understanding of the results of the survey and the intent of the legislature. It shows that Idahoans want to make sure to preserve their access to the public lands, but stresses that the legislature has made it clear that they have no intention of blocking access, and they want to make sure to keep the public involved in the process of determining what they will do. Continued studies and public input. Both good things.

The Betrayed: On Warriors, Cowboys and Other MisfitsCombat Shooter's HandbookHow did we, at American Lands Council, determine which article was correct? We called the politicians involved. Believe it or not, it’s not that difficult. They all have contact information available online. They are just as frustrated…if not more so…than the rest of us at seeing their words and intentions twisted to manipulate the public. They are happy to clarify any misunderstandings and send out information to those who are interested.

In a world of the biased media, how can one find the truth? It can be a daunting task to be sure. Many, in their frustrations, retract themselves from the world of politics, convinced that there is nothing they can do…that all politicians are bad…that they are justified in focusing their attentions on other things more within their power to control. But these people would be wrong.  You can learn to tell fact from fiction.

There are honest, good politicians. And you cannot delegate your responsibility as a citizen of these United States. You must know who is running for office. You must select good, wise and honest people. And then you must watch them closely to ensure that they are honoring the promises they made to you and their other constituents. Or…you must pay the consequences. Below, I am copying the text of both of the articles because I want you to compare them for yourselves. Learn to discern between fact and fiction. See past the webs of manipulation and continue standing for truth. American Lands Council http://www.americanlandscouncil.org/

Fiction: The Spokesman.com article: 

GOP lawmakers say they’ve learned that Idahoans treasure access to public lands

Sen. Chuck Winder, R-Boise, speaks at a press conference Friday at the Idaho Capitol (Betsy Russell)

Sen. Chuck Winder, R-Boise, co-chair of the joint legislative interim committee that spent two years studying how the state could take over federal lands, said at a news conference today that lawmakers concluded they don’t want to do that. “We found that pursuing any type of litigation at this time would not be beneficial, and that we should wait and see what other states are doing,” Winder said. He said the panel came up with two major findings: That there’s dissatisfaction about how federal lands in Idaho are managed, and that “no one wants to lose their access to these lands.”

He joined other GOP lawmakers today at a news conference designed in part to counter fears that lawmakers want public lands sold, ending Idahoans’ access to them. “We need to continue involving the public,” said House Speaker Scott Bedke. He said he sees “three pillars” to the issue: That the public wants to keep its access; that it wants to be included in planning for public lands; and that it “does not want it to transfer to other entities.”

Winder said, “No one is satisfied with the status quo. There is a need to improve the management and the quality of management of public lands.” But he said, “It’ll be a political solution to improve management,” working with Idaho’s congressional delegation.

The two and Rep. Stephen Hartgen, R-Twin Falls, said lawmakers likely will craft another resolution this year on federal public lands, but didn’t say if they’d repudiate the one they passed two years ago demanding that the federal government turn over title to the state. “We learned some things,” Winder said. “The majority of Idaho citizens love the access to public lands.”

Fact: MagicValley.com article

Bedke Says Law to Extend Federal Lands Committee Coming

BOISE • Legislation could be coming soon to extend the existence of the Legislature’s Federal Lands Interim Committee.

House Speaker Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, said Friday morning that he expects to see a law this session to allow the committee to continue to study issues raised by its report.

The committee was created in 2013 to examine federal lands management in Idaho with an eye toward increasing the state’s role.

It accepted its final report a week ago, recommending some approaches to accomplish this.

The report recommends not suing the federal government to get title to the lands, saying Idaho should wait to see what’s done in Utah, which has moved further down this road.

That final report asked the committee to be extended until the end of the 2016 session, to work out legal changes needed to implement its recommendations, and to appropriate up to $500,000 to do more analysis of the economic impact of a transfer of land into state hands.

Beyond that, the report recommends the Legislature create a couple of staff positions, possibly within the Department of Lands, and a permanent commission to implement its recommendations with $250,000 funding.

House Republican leaders held a news conference Friday morning, focusing largely on the report’s recommendations, making their case for increased state management and against some points raised by critics of the idea that the state should manage some federal lands.

Committee Chairman Sen. Chuck Winder, R-Boise, said public testimony at the committee’s hearings last year showed most people are opposed to selling public lands, want to see continued public access and think the lands need to be managed better. Many critics of a lands transfer have said they worry about public access being limited and about lands possibly being sold.

Bedke said he opposes selling public lands and wants to preserve access and continue the public’s involvement in the discussions.

He cited the number of wildfires on federal land as evidence that current management strategies aren’t working.

“Mother Nature grows these trees, and they’re going to be either harvested or burnt at some point,” he said.

Rep. Stephen Hartgen, R-Twin Falls, who was on the committee, said Idaho’s timber resources are being poorly managed by the federal government, and the state should invest in collaborative management models to improve upon this.

“There are billions and billions of board feet of lumber dying on our national lands in the state of Idaho,” he said.

Opponents also have criticized the committee for hiring an outside law firm, Holland and Hart, to advise it.

Winder defended the cost Friday, saying that, considering the potential for improving land management, the money was worth it.

“That was one drop in the Snake River,” he said.

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2 Responses to Fact or Fiction

  1. Rich says:

    It’s hard for many people to accept all political officeholders as members of a “criminal class” since they know these politicians personally and believe them committed to “doing good.” The problem is not only that the very nature of government office attracts the worse people – those who want the benefits (and especially the adulation) given officeholders and will go along almost anything to get and keep them – but that politics brings out the worst in good people. Regardless of office, it is very rarely possible (almost an impossibility) to help one constituent or group of constituents without a need to,trample on the rights of others. Even an elected saint will quickly be faced with dilemmas of this nature, at which point he either resigns from office or makes these “Solomon-like” decisions by internally rationalizing a utilitarian ethic. He (or she) would shudder to think that was the same ethic employed by Stalin – i.e., ‘to make an omelet one must break a few eggs’ – but that is exactly what it is. And the longer these good folks stay in office, the easier it becomes to see themselves as Solomons and to accept the egg-breaking until, no matter how saintly they were when elected initially, or no matter how saintly they still appear in conversation, they have become what many of them ran against. The system changed them by bringing out their worst.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Indeed, indeed, indeed. And once a person realizes that and comes to grips with it, his world view will be changed for life. He will have overcome a lifetime of authoritarian indoctrination that most of us suffered at the hands of the government’s schools, the media (including entertainment), family, church–e.g. essentially every social organization we come in contact with.

      Oh but without them, who would build the roads? (Those of you who recognize the sarcasm in that get it. Those of you who don’t… well, if you are happy, rattle your chains.


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