February 7, 2023

Battered Communities

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Across America, while urban areas enjoy an economic boom, rural communities are suffering unprecedented social and economic losses. Their suffering is directly linked to a bewildering array of government actions allegedly protecting the environment. The federal government is being unduly influenced to perform these actions by an equally bewildering array of agenda-driven employees, environmental organizations, and funders in private foundations. All segments of natural resource goods production – water development, farming, ranching, mining, petroleum, timber, fishing, transportation, and manufacturing projects – are being systematically attacked, thwarted, and eradicated. Natural resource production and related jobs are being forced offshore. Town and county tax revenues fall with natural resource goods production losses, aggravating an urban-rural prosperity gap.

This report focuses on the federal government actions and related federal employees, the grant-driven environmental groups that prompt the actions, and the private foundations that design the attacks. It asks the question, “What are the connections between the visible damage in rural areas and the triangle of government employees – environmental groups – private foundations?”

Simply put, who is organizing the destruction of rural American resource producers?

It is well known that numerous former environmental organization executives occupy positions within the present administration. It is less well known that thousands of activist members of advocacy groups are employed by federal agencies in positions that give them opportunity to exercise agenda-driven undue influence over goods-production decisions applied in rural areas.

It is well known that environmental organizations use lawsuits, lobbying and administrative pressure to destroy economic activities they dislike. It is less well known that large networks of environmental organizations coordinate to systematically target specific rural communities for economic dismantling.

It is understood that private foundations provide substantial support to environmental organizations. It is less understood that a number of private foundations have become prescriptive rather than responsive. They design the programs, select the funding recipients and direct grant-driven projects for a substantial number of environmental organizations.

The activist federal employees, the grant-driven environmental groups and the prescriptive private foundations unduly influence public policy. They were not elected. They are totally unaccountable.

This report examines the largest unacknowledged program of social and economic displacement in American history. It ends with a call for Inspector General investigation of undue influence and Congressional investigation of the causes behind Battered Communities.

This report is co-sponsored by the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, American Land Rights Association, F.I.G.H.T. for Minnesota (Fight Inefficient Government and High Taxes), and the Maine Conservation Rights Institute. Permission to reproduce portions of this report is granted.<<<Read the Full Report>>>