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View Diary: The Choice to Clean Up the Bush Mess at Interior (164 comments)

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  •  Thompson's no leader on the environment (1+ / 0-)
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    wezelboy

    Sorry, Dec Sue, but it's not just the Arcata wingnuts who aren't impressed with Thompson. See my note above in response to kaleidescope -- by contrast to Grijalva especially, but even to Kitzhaber, Thompson just has not been someone who is really willing to dig in and try to make a difference on key resource conflicts. In fact, to far too great a degree, he embodies those conflicts -- like that between the water salmon need and the water the wine industry wants.

    As kaleidescope quite properly notes, the bizarre boondoggle that is the North Coast Rail Authority is another example of Thompson's environmental lameness, as well as a window into why he's so lame: Thompson is the voice, and now the boss, of a Democratic machine that came to power on the North Coast a generation ago, and has long since given up serious reform efforts for maneuvers dedicated to preserving their own power and directing pork to their supporters.

    But that's just the beginning of the story. Thompson's district includes big chunks of wild rivers and public lands, and he's been spectacularly unimpressive over the last 8 years as the Bush administration went after those places. On salmon, he's for whatever the fishermen and tribes are for. That can be good, but isn't always good enough - both those interests are essentially commercial harvesters.

    You can be certain that, as Sec Int, Thompson would cram the proposed Klamath Basin agreement down the throats of the remaining tribal and environmental holdouts, in order to announce a big win. Whether the dams would ever come out, or the salmon ever recover, would be a whole different question.  

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