August 19, 2019

Why Rural Americans in Wolf Country Believe Lois Lerner will be the Next IRS Commissioner

Guest post by James Beers:

This is being written as the notorious Lois Lerner of IRS infamy waits somewhere in retirement watching what information about her vile political activities is dripping out and wondering about what the chances are that her mysteriously lost government e-mails for a period of several years (while she denied tax-exempt eligibility to political opponents of the Obama Administration) will ever be recovered.

This Congressional Investigation into political-targeting of opponents of the President by the IRS has gone on for more than a year. Several months ago, Miss Lerner became a target of the investigation at which time she proclaimed her innocence and promptly pleaded her 5th Amendment right to not be “compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself”, or in this case herself. She immediately retired and clammed up like an oyster in a bucket. Her behavior is being mimicked by the current IRS Commissioner as he testifies daily in one of two modes. He is either giving evasive and disrespectful answers to Congressman with a smirk of contempt on his face, or he basks in adulation from Members of the President’s Party who treat him like a king who has been unjustifiably dragged before dogs.

While it is great theatre, as was Watergate, this week has been particularly illuminating about this IRS SCANDAL:

1. The President who initially feigned outrage (“if true”) about the scandal and later said there was not a “smidgeon” of corruption in the IRS; doubled down today as he toured Minnesota eateries and told an enthralled crowd of Minnesota fans that it (the Lerner/IRS contretemps) was just a “political scandal.”

2. An errant Lois Lerner e-mail came to light that shows her trying to initiate an unjustified IRS Audit of US Senator Grassley, a Republican known for his enthusiastic oversight of the IRS and Miss Lerner in recent years.

3. The IRS Commissioner has been lying to Congress for over a month about what e-mails would be provided while knowing that thousands were “lost”.

4. Miss Lerner’s and six of her known confederate’s (some of whom frequently visited the White House on undisclosed business) government e-mails were “lost” a week and a half after Congress first inquired about obtaining them over months ago. The explanation was that their computers “crashed” and hard drives were erased and recycled as the servers also mysteriously and simultaneously expired.

5. While computer experts laughed at the possibility of such a loss of information under these circumstances, word leaked out that IRS (that spent about $2B annually on information management) actually had employed as a contractor for many years a famous computer firm to (like those companies that back-up home computers like mine) keep a record of all computer information in case the computer or computers “crash”.

6. Shortly thereafter, word leaked out that while this firm had actually advertised that they backed up the IRS (wow!) computers for an extended period, they had been FIRED by the IRS in the midst of the initial discovery of lost e-mails, mysteriously expiring servers, and a total disappearance of all the information requested by Congress in the period before and right after the last election!

The Chutzpah (a Yiddish word for audacity, as in the boy that murdered his mother and father and threw himself on the mercy of the court as an orphan) in what has gone on this week is beyond the belief of any law-abiding American, but I digress. What caught this old bureaucrat’s eye however was the total cover-up including the FIRING without explanation of the very firm whose job it was to keep all such records on file under all circumstances.

Informed Rural Americans suffering with forcibly-imposed and protected GI (Government-Imposed) Wolves will recognize this scandal scenario immediately as being the model revealed 15 years ago about a scandal by similar political operatives in the US Fish and Wildlife Service that was eventually covered up and subsequently skyrocketed the two political operative’s careers to dizzying heights today.

The USFWS SCANDAL:

1. A 1999 Audit Report by the General Accounting Office to the US House of Representatives’ Natural Resources Committee revealed the following:

A.) In 1992 after the election of President Clinton and the election of the first Republican-controlled US House of Representatives in 40 years, USFWS hurriedly requested funding from Congress to introduce wolves (an extremely unpopular and controversial matter) and was denied.

B.) Within two months of taking office, the new House Leadership eliminated a superfluous hotbed of environmental activism and over-reach Committee, The Merchant Marine and Fisheries Committee. The partisan staff Director of that Committee was immediately hired by USFWS and placed in charge of the hunting and fishing Excise Taxes that annually generated ½ to ¾ of a Billion dollars annually for exclusive distribution to state fish and wildlife agencies and their programs that generated these taxes.

C.) Two years after (B), $45 to $60 Million of Excise Tax dollars were secretly “stolen”, “diverted”, “appropriated” (choose whatever word you are comfortable with) by USFWS and used primarily to trap, import, and quickly release wolves in Yellowstone National Park; open a new USFWS office in California (also denied funding by Congress) for coordinating with radical groups; and pay bonuses (shades of the VA/IRS/et al Scandals) to USFWS managers. It is highly illegal to: 1. Take those funds or to use them for federal purposes; 2. Fund federal programs with any funds after Congress has denied such funding; and 3. To award them to any federal employees not directly involved in the LAWFUL administration of the Excise Taxes.

2. The lady Director that oversaw USFWS in those days appointed the radical Defenders of Wildlife (a private, Non-Government Lobby Group) to administer Federal “compensation” for any rare or unexpected damage to livestock but not dogs or other domestic animals. (This was merely a ploy to delay complaints until wolf numbers and distributions were too great to control.) Reports of damage mostly were “undetermined” or blamed on dogs or “unknown” which meant no compensation or record of the horrendous damage wrought by wolves.

3. The political fallout was hot at first and then buried as the Presidential (Bush/Gore) election approached and Democrats demurred and Republicans ran from confrontations like “Gingrich’s” Government closure and partisanship after Clinton’s embarrassments with an intern in the oval office (another “political” scandal like the VA/IRS/et al of today.)

4. Most surprising (to me) was the way the State Fish and Wildlife Directors never complained OR EVEN ASKED THAT CONGRESS REPLACE THE STOLEN FUNDS! NOR DID ALL THOSE “UNLIMTEDS”, “FOREVERS”, “ASSOCIATIONS”, “FOUNDATIONS”, OR “OUTDOOR STORES” DEMAND REPLACEMENT OF THE STOLEN MILLIONS! Thus did the hunters, fishermen and trappers of the US go about their daily lives as (at least) $45 to $60 Million dollars of the Taxes they instituted and paid were not only stolen from them and their prized programs: those taxes and the wolves they generated are being used as I write this to eliminate hunting, fishing, trapping, grazing, and public land management and use.

That GI Wolves now occur in 14 western states where they have caused great rural harm, economic losses, controversy, and are advancing radical causes like eliminating hunting and trapping, animal control, grazing, and further public land closures and restrictions is a matter of record. One needs look no further than the Rally Being Held in Yellowstone National Park and Hosted by the US National Park Service this weekend as I am writing this. I quote:

“Event organizers for Speak for Wolves: Yellowstone 2014 have developed the following five keys to reforming wildlife management in America:

* Ban trapping/snaring on all federal public lands.
* End grazing on all federal public lands.
* Abolish the predator-control department of the USDA Wildlife Services.
* Reform how state fish and game agencies operate.
* Introduce legislation to protect all predators, including wolves, from sport hunting, trapping, and snaring.”

This event is hosted by the USNPS, the sister (USNPS and USFWS are under the same Assistant Secretary of the Interior) agency of USFWS. Here is the government sponsoring radical political changes and like IRS, only for those favored by the President. Would the NRA be so “hosted” or “sponsored” or “endorsed” by USNPS? Consider that the NRA represents and protects a clear Constitutional guarantee and these usurpers represent taking more and more rights and cultural traditions from fellow citizens they despise by growing federal power and using tax dollars to accomplish it!

When the GAO Audit Report became public, a little-mentioned aspect was the fact that the USFWS had been required for 70 years to AUDIT EACH STATE AGENCIES FISH AND WILDLIFE PROGRAM USE OF THE EXCISE TAXES, EVERY FIVE YEARS! This had not been done for nearly two decades much to the delight of State Directors and federal managers that were using the funds for audits for other things surreptitiously. So practically overnight, USFWS hired a respected Defense Auditor to begin auditing State Fish and Wildlife Agencies on a Five Year Cycle.

Now State Fish and Wildlife Agencies, like USFWS, are exceedingly complex entities to audit. Funds can only be used for this and not for that. Are mollusks fish and eligible? Is stocking permitted? Is animal control, “operations” or something else? Historically, experienced (with fish and wildlife operations) accountants and a biologist with government experience and budgeting backgrounds were necessary for any reliable audit. Even when audited routinely, state directors and state political hacks (just like the Lois Lerners and Commissioner Kostinens of today) use whatever funds or powers they can for their own political and personal ends. Some examples of No-Noes:

– One state bought vehicles with F&W funds and then put them in the state car pool for use by all state employees.

– Another state transferred wildlife-purchased lands to build a state prison.

– Another state made a right-of-way across a wildlife-purchased area to allow for a hugely profitable land development and the Governor went on to become President.

– One state bought huge woodlands and then sold the timber and put the funds in the state’s general funds.

You don’t have to be an auditor to suspect that after almost two decades of no audits the magnitude of such “discrepancies” might be, well, “unexpectedly high” and high they were. In the first two years of the renewed audits, as the auditors began understanding the intricacies of earmarked funds and fish and wildlife operations they were, to no one’s surprise, somewhat behind in their schedule. Interestingly, their preliminary findings were tightly guarded and State Directors were howling behind the scenes like Banshees on a dark Irish night. So the USFWS Director FIRED the auditors for being behind schedule and hired the Interior Department Inspector General (a retired Secret Service guy with a largely retired Secret Service staff WHO’S JOB WAS OVERSIGHT OF THE VERY USFWS THAT HAD JUST HIRED HIM TO WORK FOR THEM! You might remember him as the fellow in the US House of Representatives’ ”Peanut Gallery” during President Obama’s State of the Union address as the President’s choice to oversee the President’s “Stimulus Funding.”

So the rumored “discrepancies” in state fish and wildlife operations (millions in the first few states audited) were somehow “explained” or found to be “in error” and the State Directors, all those hunter/fishermen organizations, the big “outdoor stores and federal bureaucrats still continue graze on the buffets and breakfasts at the big meetings as they all sip chardonnay and discuss job transfers, retirement employment and political connections.

Oh, and the Director and “Administrator” of those Excise Taxes that made all this possible? The lady Director spent a high-paid stint in The National Wildlife Federation as she waited for the 3-year ban on working for some group you materially benefitted while in government employment to expire after she resigned when Gore lost the election. Today she is the “President” or “Director” or “Grand-Pooh-Bah” of her favored Defenders of Wildlife and will probably attend the Rally in Yellowstone today. The “Administrator” was given a high-paying non-job in USFWS Headquarters as a “Science Advisor” under President Bush. The Bush folks gave him a nice office where he sat like a Manchurian Candidate until the next Democrat President (and they say that there is no difference between “RINOS” and “Democrats”.) This sort of thing goes on throughout government but my experience was that Republicans were far more reluctant to clean house than Democrats that seldom exhibited such scruples. Today the “Administrator” is DIRECTOR of USFWS!

So if you are still wondering about the connection between Lois Lerner and the lady Director of USFWS and her Excise Tax “Administrator” it is this: in any public scandal just FIRE any Auditor or Computer Back-Up firm that might reveal any further embarrassments. No one really cares. Just like the Presidential politics overcame the USFWS scandal and revealed the perfidy of state wildlife program advocates, so too can we expect the upcoming election and the White House to bury the IRS investigation as Republicans once again swim toward the middle and the proof of crimes become idle chatter at Washington get-togethers.

Heck, if the USFWS Director can move up to a high-paying NGO job and her Excise Tax Administrator can become Director of arguably one of the most powerful (next to IRS?) agencies in Washington after the USFWS scandal: if Lois Lerner doesn’t get a high-paying job with some political think-tank or get asked to be a Tax-Exemption Advisor at IRS or even Commissioner of the IRS, well she must not be ambitious.

Jim Beers
28 June 2014

If you found this worthwhile, please share it with others. Thanks.

Jim Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow. He was stationed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York City, and Washington DC. He also served as a US Navy Line Officer in the western Pacific and on Adak, Alaska in the Aleutian Islands. He has worked for the Utah Fish & Game, Minneapolis Police Department, and as a Security Supervisor in Washington, DC. He testified three times before Congress; twice regarding the theft by the US Fish & Wildlife Service of $45 to 60 Million from State fish and wildlife funds and once in opposition to expanding Federal Invasive Species authority. He resides in Eagan, Minnesota with his wife of many decades.

Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting. You can receive future articles by sending a request with your e-mail address to: jimbeers7@comcast.net

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Bill Clinton Disarmed the Military

clintondisarmmilitary

According to the Libertarian Republic, former President Bill Clinton, shortly after taking office, prohibited the carrying of weapons at military installations. This makes the location of the latest mass shooting, in Washington, D.C., where it is illegal to have a gun, a “gun free zone.” Don’t all mass shootings occur in “gun free zones?” How’s that working out?

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Monica Lewinsky’s X-Boyfriend’s Wife for President

xboyfriend

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Obama Administration’s Attempt to Define “Significant Portion of it’s Range”

Let me say right off the top in order that some may not want to waste their time seeking truth, that I believe very strongly that the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA)(Act) is unconstitutional. It is such because it does not stand up against the authority of the Constitution in which a statute cannot, in and of itself, be a violation of the Constitution. It also does not mean that I oppose species protection. The majority of people in this country don’t care nor are they free to undertake independent thought to learn about the truth. Most every, if not all, laws on our books are nothing more than tools to extract power from the people and put it into the hands of government. I pray for your epiphany for truth.

However, simply because I believe the Act is criminal, doesn’t dismiss me from exposing the further fraud behind the ESA and now the attempts by Congress and the Obama Administration to “fix” it.

As I have written about recently, the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources has begun a series of hearings to examine the Endangered Species Act, (ESA) in hopes of determining: “How litigation is costing jobs and impeding true recovery efforts.” With the Committee using that description of the intent of their hearings, should we hold out any hope that any efforts will be directed at amending or, as some are asking, repealing of the ESA? Not likely.

But this has not stopped the Obama Administration of getting into the ESA fray. After all, we do have an election coming up and doing and saying anything to steal a vote is chichi these days in Washington. The “Services”, collectively the Department of Interior, the Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of Commerce and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, have gone all out to help Americans define the simple phrase, “significant portion of its range”.

That phrase is used extremely sparingly in the ESA and it pertains, at least in my mind and after reading Obama’s proposal I question if the “Services” have any mind, to criteria used to determine when and if a species might be considered for federal protection under the ESA.

Either I’m not fully enlightened or am too honest, but I happen to think that “significant portion” would mean a big or perhaps as much as a majority or more of something, especially when used in the context of a word that describes size, i.e. “portion”. Evidently I’m wrong, according to the “Services” Draft Policy to define “significant portion of its range”.

There is a reason that Congress and the President, beyond the usual politics, are taking a look, finally, at the ESA. It’s badly broken. In its day, it was intended, we were told, to provide a means in which government regulation could prevent the needless destruction of plant and animal species. Perhaps because the bill was signed into law by President Richard Nixon, who was embroiled in the Watergate scandal, set the stage for a bill designed to fail. And fail it has.

The Act has done little to save species and a lot to put a lot of money into the bank accounts of environmentalists, stifling job growth and stripping Americans of their rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

If you and I can get beyond arguing whether the ESA is worth anything and discover that it’s not, then surely we can begin to see the efforts of Congress to examine portions of the ESA and President Obama’s administration to define words in the Act as laughable.

Regardless of whether President Obama thinks he can define “significant”, it is NOT going to do anything to change the problems with the ESA. Among the massive issues that makes the ESA look like a falling down old barn, is the lack of specific information in the administration of this bill. This leaves the door open to giving the Secretary of Interior too much discretion, flexibility and deference as it pertains to interpretive policy, and it has led to a myriad of court rulings in which judges have taken it upon themselves to interpret the ESA in any fashion they can.

One of the downsides to the judicial branches of our government is that every time there is a court ruling the words created in that ruling become case law and at least to some degree becomes precedent in future court cases, regardless of the truth or accuracy of what is written.

So what I can say right from the beginning that what the “Services” are attempting to do in defining “significant portion of its range”, is to hand select from existing statutes, case histories and case law, some or all which are seriously flawed, combined with their own interpretations of what they think the intention of the legislators were in writing the Endangered Species Act.

What on earth could go wrong?

Remember back in 1998?, when then President Bill Clinton was answering questions before a grand jury about his involvement with Monica Lewinsky? He was asked if there was anything going on between him and Miss Lewinsky. Bill Clinton responded to the jury:

“It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is. If the–if he–if ‘is’ means is and never has been, that is not–that is one thing. If it means there is none, that was a completely true statement….Now, if someone had asked me on that day, are you having any kind of sexual relations with Ms. Lewinsky, that is, asked me a question in the present tense, I would have said no. And it would have been completely true.”

This kind of jibber-jabber spin is endemic among politicians and governmental agencies. That’s why we all hate them so. Obama’s “Services” people don’t go quite to that extreme in their attempts to define “significant portion of its range”, but read what they did say.

This Draft Policy took approximately 20 or more pages to conclude using the various resources and criteria I have already described above to determine that “significant portion of its range” in its entirely, together, as a whole, means:

provides an independent basis for listing and protecting the entire species

In other words, this is pretty much what we have all become subjected to over the past near 40 years. Some too highly paid, well indoctrinated person(s) at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) made a determination that a particular species was in trouble and was in trouble over a “significant portion of its range” and therefore was declared “endangered” and the “range” essentially became critical habitat.

But the “Services” have determined that it depends on what the meaning of significant is as to whether or not significant actually becomes significant.

This draft policy includes the following definition of “significant” as it relates to SPR [significant portion of its range]: a portion is “significant” in the context of the Act’s “significant portion of its range” phrase if its contribution to the viability of the species is so important that, without that portion, the species would be in danger of extinction.

Significant, used as an adjective, which if my English 101 is correct, is defined in most dictionaries as:

1. important; of consequence.
2. having or expressing a meaning; indicative; suggestive: a significant wink.
3. Statistics . of or pertaining to observations that are unlikely to occur by chance and that therefore indicate a systematic cause.

If “significant” is used as an adjective to describe portion, and portion in this context relates to a physical area or size of land, i.e. range, then wouldn’t significant portion suggest what is being talked about here is geographical scope of the range of a species?

The “Services” concluded that the choice of definition for “significant” is “important”. Therefore, it’s not the size of the portion of the range but the importance of the portion of the range they have decided to use.

I could go on with such foolishness but it’s more important to provide focus on what’s the bottom line. The bottom line here is that not only will Obama’s Draft Policy not only not help anything as it pertains to the ESA but will in fact make matters even worse.

Nothing in this policy limits the discretion and authority of the “Secretary” to implement and make definitions and rulings as he/she deems “scientific” and necessary for the administration of the ESA. Not only that, but this policy seriously places into the hands of the government, greater authority to not only create “portions of its range”, in other words, the Secretary can declare a species endangered and establish all the “critical habitat” he wants. He will still have power to create Distinct Population Segments. However, this new policy will allow the Secretary, through a series of predetermined “thresholds”; a measure of how important it is to protect one small area where a certain species may exist in order to save the entire species globally, create millions of tiny DPSs that the “Services” have said they don’t want to do.

Try to paint a picture in your mind of what this might look like. Haul out a map of the U.S. and it is peppered with 6,537,129 little dots where the Secretary has created a “significant” “significant portion of its range”. And that “significant” range happens to be the 350-acre ranch your trying to eke out a living on. I think this is significant.

Oh, that won’t happen! You all say. Won’t it? If not, then why is this included in the Draft Policy?

Therefore, if a species is determined to be endangered in an SPR, under this draft policy, the
species would be listed as endangered throughout all of its range, even in situations where the facts simultaneously support a determination that the species is threatened throughout all of its range. However, we recognize that this approach may raise concerns that the Services will be applying a higher level of protection where a lesser level of protection might arguably fit if viewed across a species’ range. The Services are particularly interested in public comments on this issue.

I am sure that how I see this Draft Policy and how others may see it will be worlds apart. For those who have faith and confidence in government and believe the ESA is a viable statute that actually protects species, while preserving the rights of Americans, you may think this attempt at defining “significant portion of its range” is a good thing. I do not!

I see it as further pushing the ESA bus over the cliff. It defines nothing. It only serves to foist even more autocratic power into the hands of government, particularly that of the Secretary of Interior. And, gives authority to the Secretary to amass hundreds upon thousands of SRPs (Significan Range Portions) and DPSs (Distinct Population Segments) all over the country.

One can think of instances where this authority and application may be practical but you shouldn’t think it actually will. One example might be the instance in Wyoming, where the state, in working with the Feds, has come up with a SRP of sorts that provides protections for the gray wolf in one zone, while at the same time the rest of the state isn’t burdened under the same ball and chain of ESA protection. But when you consider the amount of abuse that will come from this authority, it becomes a more effective fire starter than an extinguisher. There are so many catch words and phrases in this Draft that one would be foolish to think it’s intended for anything of value to the people.

While I am not expecting anything productive to come out of the Committee hearings in Washington, I will write them and tell them that they need to derail this Draft Policy and actually get down to meat and potato changes or consider complete repeal of the ESA.

If you would like to take the time to read Obama’s Draft Policy, you can read it at this link. In addition, at the end of the Policy proposal, you’ll find specific questions the “Services” are seeking comments on and how you can submit comments about this policy. Comments will be opened for 60 days after the official posting of the Draft to the Federal Register.

Tom Remington

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Obama Administration’s Attempt to Define “Significant Portion of it’s Range”

Let me say right off the top in order that some may not want to waste their time seeking truth, that I believe very strongly that the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA)(Act) is unconstitutional. It is such because it does not stand up against the authority of the Constitution in which a statute cannot, in and of itself, be a violation of the Constitution. It also does not mean that I oppose species protection. The majority of people in this country don’t care nor are they free to undertake independent thought to learn about the truth. Most every, if not all, laws on our books are nothing more than tools to extract power from the people and put it into the hands of government. I pray for your epiphany for truth.

However, simply because I believe the Act is criminal, doesn’t dismiss me from exposing the further fraud behind the ESA and now the attempts by Congress and the Obama Administration to “fix” it.

As I have written about recently, the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources has begun a series of hearings to examine the Endangered Species Act, (ESA) in hopes of determining: “How litigation is costing jobs and impeding true recovery efforts.” With the Committee using that description of the intent of their hearings, should we hold out any hope that any efforts will be directed at amending or, as some are asking, repealing of the ESA? Not likely.

But this has not stopped the Obama Administration of getting into the ESA fray. After all, we do have an election coming up and doing and saying anything to steal a vote is chichi these days in Washington. The “Services”, collectively the Department of Interior, the Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of Commerce and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, have gone all out to help Americans define the simple phrase, “significant portion of its range”.

That phrase is used extremely sparingly in the ESA and it pertains, at least in my mind and after reading Obama’s proposal I question if the “Services” have any mind, to criteria used to determine when and if a species might be considered for federal protection under the ESA.

Either I’m not fully enlightened or am too honest, but I happen to think that “significant portion” would mean a big or perhaps as much as a majority or more of something, especially when used in the context of a word that describes size, i.e. “portion”. Evidently I’m wrong, according to the “Services” Draft Policy to define “significant portion of its range”.

There is a reason that Congress and the President, beyond the usual politics, are taking a look, finally, at the ESA. It’s badly broken. In its day, it was intended, we were told, to provide a means in which government regulation could prevent the needless destruction of plant and animal species. Perhaps because the bill was signed into law by President Richard Nixon, who was embroiled in the Watergate scandal, set the stage for a bill designed to fail. And fail it has.

The Act has done little to save species and a lot to put a lot of money into the bank accounts of environmentalists, stifling job growth and stripping Americans of their rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

If you and I can get beyond arguing whether the ESA is worth anything and discover that it’s not, then surely we can begin to see the efforts of Congress to examine portions of the ESA and President Obama’s administration to define words in the Act as laughable.

Regardless of whether President Obama thinks he can define “significant”, it is NOT going to do anything to change the problems with the ESA. Among the massive issues that makes the ESA look like a falling down old barn, is the lack of specific information in the administration of this bill. This leaves the door open to giving the Secretary of Interior too much discretion, flexibility and deference as it pertains to interpretive policy, and it has led to a myriad of court rulings in which judges have taken it upon themselves to interpret the ESA in any fashion they can.

One of the downsides to the judicial branches of our government is that every time there is a court ruling the words created in that ruling become case law and at least to some degree becomes precedent in future court cases, regardless of the truth or accuracy of what is written.

So what I can say right from the beginning that what the “Services” are attempting to do in defining “significant portion of its range”, is to hand select from existing statutes, case histories and case law, some or all which are seriously flawed, combined with their own interpretations of what they think the intention of the legislators were in writing the Endangered Species Act.

What on earth could go wrong?

Remember back in 1998?, when then President Bill Clinton was answering questions before a grand jury about his involvement with Monica Lewinsky? He was asked if there was anything going on between him and Miss Lewinsky. Bill Clinton responded to the jury:

“It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is. If the–if he–if ‘is’ means is and never has been, that is not–that is one thing. If it means there is none, that was a completely true statement….Now, if someone had asked me on that day, are you having any kind of sexual relations with Ms. Lewinsky, that is, asked me a question in the present tense, I would have said no. And it would have been completely true.”

This kind of jibber-jabber spin is endemic among politicians and governmental agencies. That’s why we all hate them so. Obama’s “Services” people don’t go quite to that extreme in their attempts to define “significant portion of its range”, but read what they did say.

This Draft Policy took approximately 20 or more pages to conclude using the various resources and criteria I have already described above to determine that “significant portion of its range” in its entirely, together, as a whole, means:

provides an independent basis for listing and protecting the entire species

In other words, this is pretty much what we have all become subjected to over the past near 40 years. Some too highly paid, well indoctrinated person(s) at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) made a determination that a particular species was in trouble and was in trouble over a “significant portion of its range” and therefore was declared “endangered” and the “range” essentially became critical habitat.

But the “Services” have determined that it depends on what the meaning of significant is as to whether or not significant actually becomes significant.

This draft policy includes the following definition of “significant” as it relates to SPR [significant portion of its range]: a portion is “significant” in the context of the Act’s “significant portion of its range” phrase if its contribution to the viability of the species is so important that, without that portion, the species would be in danger of extinction.

Significant, used as an adjective, which if my English 101 is correct, is defined in most dictionaries as:

1. important; of consequence.
2. having or expressing a meaning; indicative; suggestive: a significant wink.
3. Statistics . of or pertaining to observations that are unlikely to occur by chance and that therefore indicate a systematic cause.

If “significant” is used as an adjective to describe portion, and portion in this context relates to a physical area or size of land, i.e. range, then wouldn’t significant portion suggest what is being talked about here is geographical scope of the range of a species?

The “Services” concluded that the choice of definition for “significant” is “important”. Therefore, it’s not the size of the portion of the range but the importance of the portion of the range they have decided to use.

I could go on with such foolishness but it’s more important to provide focus on what’s the bottom line. The bottom line here is that not only will Obama’s Draft Policy not only not help anything as it pertains to the ESA but will in fact make matters even worse.

Nothing in this policy limits the discretion and authority of the “Secretary” to implement and make definitions and rulings as he/she deems “scientific” and necessary for the administration of the ESA. Not only that, but this policy seriously places into the hands of the government, greater authority to not only create “portions of its range”, in other words, the Secretary can declare a species endangered and establish all the “critical habitat” he wants. He will still have power to create Distinct Population Segments. However, this new policy will allow the Secretary, through a series of predetermined “thresholds”; a measure of how important it is to protect one small area where a certain species may exist in order to save the entire species globally, create millions of tiny DPSs that the “Services” have said they don’t want to do.

Try to paint a picture in your mind of what this might look like. Haul out a map of the U.S. and it is peppered with 6,537,129 little dots where the Secretary has created a “significant” “significant portion of its range”. And that “significant” range happens to be the 350-acre ranch your trying to eke out a living on. I think this is significant.

Oh, that won’t happen! You all say. Won’t it? If not, then why is this included in the Draft Policy?

Therefore, if a species is determined to be endangered in an SPR, under this draft policy, the
species would be listed as endangered throughout all of its range, even in situations where the facts simultaneously support a determination that the species is threatened throughout all of its range. However, we recognize that this approach may raise concerns that the Services will be applying a higher level of protection where a lesser level of protection might arguably fit if viewed across a species’ range. The Services are particularly interested in public comments on this issue.

I am sure that how I see this Draft Policy and how others may see it will be worlds apart. For those who have faith and confidence in government and believe the ESA is a viable statute that actually protects species, while preserving the rights of Americans, you may think this attempt at defining “significant portion of its range” is a good thing. I do not!

I see it as further pushing the ESA bus over the cliff. It defines nothing. It only serves to foist even more autocratic power into the hands of government, particularly that of the Secretary of Interior. And, gives authority to the Secretary to amass hundreds upon thousands of SRPs (Significan Range Portions) and DPSs (Distinct Population Segments) all over the country.

One can think of instances where this authority and application may be practical but you shouldn’t think it actually will. One example might be the instance in Wyoming, where the state, in working with the Feds, has come up with a SRP of sorts that provides protections for the gray wolf in one zone, while at the same time the rest of the state isn’t burdened under the same ball and chain of ESA protection. But when you consider the amount of abuse that will come from this authority, it becomes a more effective fire starter than an extinguisher. There are so many catch words and phrases in this Draft that one would be foolish to think it’s intended for anything of value to the people.

While I am not expecting anything productive to come out of the Committee hearings in Washington, I will write them and tell them that they need to derail this Draft Policy and actually get down to meat and potato changes or consider complete repeal of the ESA.

If you would like to take the time to read Obama’s Draft Policy, you can read it at this link. In addition, at the end of the Policy proposal, you’ll find specific questions the “Services” are seeking comments on and how you can submit comments about this policy. Comments will be opened for 60 days after the official posting of the Draft to the Federal Register.

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