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View Diary: Communities could lose $30 million a day thanks to national park closures (99 comments)

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  •  Why? The roads are still there. (0+ / 0-)

    Do the roads in Death Valley physically vanish during a gov't shutdown?  No, they're still there, in the exact same condition they were yesterday.  So why can't people drive on them with their own cars?

    Why does the gov't have to spend a dime of money to allow a private citizen to travel through public lands in a private vehicle, on an already built road?

    •  Right (0+ / 0-)

      So what happens when they breakdown in Death Valley?  When all emergency services are closed?  Who's supposed to handle accidents?  Public safety?  Ever been to Death Valley, Norm?

      "It's too LATE to stop now!" - John Lee Hooker

      by Rolfyboy6 on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 02:00:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They call a tow truck (0+ / 0-)

        And P.S., this is just the federal gov't.  So you're saying that if a motorist got into trouble, California state troopers can't handle it?

        Sorry, but I side with freedom over public safety each and every time.  I don't need NSA spying or the patriot act to "keep me safe".  And I don't need the federal gov't to babysit me if I choose to drive myself through death valley.

        Stop treating adults like children.  People should be able to take care of themselves.

        •  Dummy (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dvalkure, BlackSheep1

          The tow trucks are from the NPS.  Death Valley is a desert far from any place.You really are stupid.

          "It's too LATE to stop now!" - John Lee Hooker

          by Rolfyboy6 on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 02:11:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Is all desert land in a national park? (0+ / 0-)

            I can look on a map and find lots of open desert land that isn't inside of a national park.  So what happens when someone breaks down in one of those places?  They're just left to die without an NPS tow truck to save them?

            Whatever aid makes it to them can make it to Death Valley during a gov't shutdown.

            •  Then yes... call the cops. (1+ / 0-)
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              All major roads are patrolled by city, state, county patrolls. That's not the case in a place like Death Valley. If not for the NPS, nobody of authority is out there. Yes, there might be fellow travelers... might not be.

              You're going to look really silly dialing your cell phone with no coverage, and nobody to call.

              And if the weather is bad, things get deadly very quickly... They don't call it Death Valley for fun.

              Freedom isn't free. That's why we pay taxes.

              by walk2live on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 02:49:05 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Then don't go to Death Valley (0+ / 0-)

                I don't know if you're going to read this or not, but I wanted to say one thing to you, based on your sig.

                Freedom isn't free. That's why we pay taxes.
                Yes I pay taxes so that the gov't can provide for public safety.  But in so doing, I did not give the gov't absolute authority to be my babysitter.  Just because I pay for police or park rangers doesn't mean I'm now forbidden to go beyond the bounds of civilization.  That I'm forbidden to take any sort of risk lest I get myself into trouble.  That is NOT what I pay taxes for.

                Anyone who isn't prepared to take a risk should absolutely stay out of Death Valley.  But those who want to accept the risk shouldn't be banned from Death Valley just because a park ranger isn't there to babysit.

                •  You can go anywhere you wish... (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Norm in Chicago

                  If you want to go walking in the wilderness for a 5 months stretch, you can do that. You don't need special permission, or a permit. You don't have to tell anyone. I've done it - twice... hence my moniker - walk2live.

                  The reason you can do that is because we have a huge amount of public lands in this country - owned by you and me. And with that ownership comes responsibility... Yes, it costs money to maintain access to those lands, and to protect them.

                  Before I did these long hikes, I was a self-described Libertarian. But, afterwards, I came to realize the tremendous value of the commons. We have a treasure in this country in our public lands... If these lands were carved-up and owned privately, it would be a tradgedy. Entire ecosystems woudl be lost to whatever can make people a quick buck. And it really would be impossible to "go somewhere wild" - everything would be fenced-off. The wilderness experiences I had would be impossible.

                  Today, I can drive down a forest road, park and camp for nothing - totally legally. Why? Because it's my land.

                  So, you might say, fine... but why pay money to forest rangers, BLM land managers and the like? Because there is a ton of financial pressure on many people to break the law. Look at countries with weak protections for their public lands - illegal logging and mining is rampant. And when it's completely unregulated, it's especially destructive - pollution, poaching and other crimes come with the territory.

                  With freedom comes responsibility, and it's our responsibility to take care of what we have. And that costs money.

                  Freedom isn't free. That's why we pay taxes.

                  by walk2live on Thu Oct 03, 2013 at 09:02:10 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I still want a National Park Service (0+ / 0-)

                    I want public lands, I want illegal logging and mining bans.  I want the roads and facilities maintained.  And they will be.

                    My point is only valid for the duration of the gov't shutdown. The road is still there, and just because the rangers are off duty for a couple weeks doesn't mean the parks should be completely closed to the public, zero access.

                    The people arguing with me in this thread disagree with you.  They want everything fenced off and for it to be  impossible to "go somewhere wild".  Via the comments I got, everyone must be babysat and they expect anyone who is more than 5 feet from a ranger will fall off a cliff or otherwise get themselves killed.  Parks must be closed while rangers are off duty in the name of public safety.

                    Am I only allowed to go somewhere wild if accompanied by a ranger?  If not, why does the shutdown matter?

        •  Yeah, and stop telling those companies they (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Rolfyboy6, BlackSheep1

          can't put lead or arsenic in their paint. Savvy consumers will figure it out and not buy them! And who needs speed limits on roads?! Pfft! Never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly? Am I right?! Why let's get rid of every regulation and rule! They're obviously just keeping us safe from ourselves! WOOT! Party like it's 1699 but with internet porn!

          Spite is the ranch dressing Republicans slather on their salad of racism

          by ontheleftcoast on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 02:17:58 PM PDT

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          •  Do you only drive the speed limit when watched? (0+ / 0-)

            The discussion is why the parks can't be open during a shutdown.  That doesn't make rules and regulations magically vanish, they're all still there.

            To you, does the speed limit and safe driving concerns just vanish for you whenever a police officer isn't watching you?

            If you're driving an empty road late at night, and you KNOW there isn't a cop for miles, that means drive 150mph right?

            •  And I'm the only car on the road? (2+ / 0-)
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              bryduck, BlackSheep1

              Sorry, but the regulations you're so afraid of aren't there to protect me from myself. They're there to protect me from the morans driving 150 mph because they don't see a cop or the company that hopes it can use that moldy bag of peanuts in the next batch of peanut butter.

              Spite is the ranch dressing Republicans slather on their salad of racism

              by ontheleftcoast on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 02:38:57 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Where did I say I don't like regulations? (0+ / 0-)

                You're using regulations in the wrong way.  You give examples of regulations that are there to protect the public.

                But how are you personally harmed by someone going for a hike in a national park without a park ranger present?  How does that pollute your ground water or poison your food?

                Why do you insist on regulating the actions of others when it doesn't affect you?

    •  You really want to get stuck (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Rolfyboy6, BlackSheep1

      in the middle of Death Valley with no way to get help? Maybe you haven't been there... I'm not sure, but it's quite remote & desolate. Roads don't function well without policing/patrolling. It's a matter of safety.

      Freedom isn't free. That's why we pay taxes.

      by walk2live on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 02:01:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Then smile for the NSA (0+ / 0-)

        The internet is just another road, and there's a whole bunch of people in the gov't who think you can't be allowed to surf the net without the NSA recording every single thing you do.

        It's a matter of safety.  You can be treated like a child, or an adult, it's your choice.

        •  Ok, maybe we should just get rid of all the cops (0+ / 0-)

          on the interstates... Heck, you know what you're getting into right? We're all adults.

          That's what the National Park Service does on roads like those in Death Valley. Those roads are not patrolled by the county or state troopers.

          Car breaks down in Death Valley? Tough luck... what a bummer - you knew what you were getting into afterall. Oh, and there is no cell coverage out there. Hopefully someone will come by in a week or two to retrieve your dessicated corpse.

          By your logic, we don't need cops on any roads at all. What could possibly go wrong?

          Freedom isn't free. That's why we pay taxes.

          by walk2live on Wed Oct 02, 2013 at 02:46:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  We don't need nearly as many (0+ / 0-)

            The cops really aren't out there to protect and serve, not anymore.  Now they're out there to hand out tickets and to bust pot smokers, to keep the prision industrial complex full.

            We don't need 80% of the cops we have, and yes, we can let people drive through Death Valley and let them assume the risk if they so choose.  No one is forced to go there.

            •  Next time you need a cop (0+ / 0-)

              and they're all busy... remember what you wrote.

              Handing out tickets is their job. I'm thrilled when I see someone get pulled-over for driving recklessly.

              Busting pot smokers is also their job... at least in 48 states. If you don't like that, lobby to change the law, don't blame cops for enforcing it. And lobbying to change the law does work - just ask the people in Washington & Colorado.

              Maybe you should get out of Chicago more. I grew up there, but moved out west when I got older. It's a wonderful city... but one thing I've realized is that most people I grew up with don't value public lands, nor have a deep understanding as to how they work. You have to drive nearly a full day from Chicago to get somewhere wild.

              There are plenty of places people can go to get their fill of self-responsibility in the Wilderness. Indeed, one of those places is Death Valley. A good friend of mine hiked the length of it through the backcountry. But, he knew what he was doing, and knew what he was getting into - he had to make a conscious effort to do what he did. He knew there was no help coming if he got hurt. However, people who drive roads into a place like Death Valley don't have that expectation... they don't have food & water they might need if they run out of gas, or the car overheats. If you want a place like Death Valley to "stay open", fine - but the roads ought to be closed. My guess is that if you want to walk into the backcountry in Death Valley, there will be nobody to stop you - have a super time.

              Freedom isn't free. That's why we pay taxes.

              by walk2live on Thu Oct 03, 2013 at 08:49:54 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I do forest preserve restoration as a hobby (0+ / 0-)

                I'm actually in the Chicago burbs, so I'm close to a few forest preserves.  I go on hikes and also volunteer with the restoration groups.  We're doing great work on the prairie and oak savanna restorations.  I love public lands.

                In the dozens of times I've gone for a hike in the woods, not once have I come across a County employee.  County employees don't need to be present for people to enjoy the forest preserves.  And if the County gov't was on shutdown, there's no reason to close the preserves, not one.  My point still stands.

    •  Because fools like you would sneak into the parks (1+ / 0-)
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       get hurt and then sue the government for lack of supervision.

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