This is beyond discussting the missoula pd are twisted that was my best friend he needed help and they are supposed to protect and serve this makes me sick!!! Do your jobs missoula!!
Remember last year when we went to see The Art of Climing? I wore my pearls! ;)
Loved the article, everyone can use a refresher in etiquette from time to time!
The republicans in this state have really done themselves and the citizens of Montana a great disservice. We should look to Michigan and Wisconsin to see the aftermath of a republican controlled state. Legislators gone wild pushing agendas counter to the will of their citizens. We are lucky to still have some checks and balances left in this state, even if certain candidates would have it other wise.
RE: The Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act
Here's some more specific and substantive information about Sen Baucus' Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act. Suffice to say, the 'devil is in the details' and in the case of this piece of legislation there are some real, long-term management concerns.
It's worth pointing out that over the past few years I've tried to make these types of substantive comments about both the Forest Jobs and Recreation Act and the Rocky Mtn Front Heritage Act on blogs and social media sites run by Montana Wilderness Association, Montana Wildlife Federation, National Wildlife Federation and Sportsmen for Montana. Unfortunately, these groups have censored and removed all these types of substantive, specific comments from their blogs and social media sites and have forever banned me from commenting again. These cowardly and anti-free speech tactics by these groups should be a pretty good indication that the fix is in and if you ain't on their happy bus they will run you over.
Anyway, below are comments about the Rocky Mtn Front Heritage Act, which were submitted to the Senate Committee in Spring 2012 and also submitted to Senator Baucus (who never bothered responding).
I'm writing today to seek important improvements to the Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act (S. 1774). While the bill would protect some small portions of the world-class Rocky Mountain Front in Montana as Wilderness, as currently written the RMFHA protects only a paltry sum as Wilderness while leaving too much of the federal public lands along the Rocky Mountain Front open to private grazing, motorized use and other uses that compromise the ecological integrity of this American Serengeti, where grizzly bears, elk, antelope, bighorn sheep and deer roam as they have for centuries.
Specifically, I urge Senator Baucus and the US Senate's Energy and Natural Resources Committee to make the following changes and improvements to the RMFHA:
• The 67, 000 acres of Wilderness designations along the Rocky Mountain Front proposed by Senator Baucus is a paltry sum, given the world-class, and largely unprotected wildlands and wildlife habitat, currently found along the Rocky Mountain Front. Even the Forest Service has recommended more Wilderness protections in their forest plans for the area than what Senator Baucus is proposing. Unfortunately, last fall supporters of Baucus’ bill dropped almost 30,000 acres of proposed Wilderness from this bill at the request of snowmobilers and those who oppose Wilderness. I strongly urge Senator Baucus and the Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee to include Wilderness protections for all the inventoried roadless wildlands along the Rocky Mountain Front.
• The Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act preserves existing motorized, grazing and logging uses on 208,160 acres of federal land, designated as the “Rocky Mountain Front Conservation Management Area." A serious question that should be posed to Senator Baucus is: How does preserving existing motorized use, grazing and logging on 208,160 acres along the Rocky Mountain Front actually result in eliminating the threats posed by motorized use, grazing and logging in these areas?
• Re: Grazing – This bill locks-in public lands grazing across the Front by stating that “The secretary shall permit grazing” where it currently exists. Under existing law, grazing may be allowed to continue, but it is not mandated that it must be allowed to continue. The current language of the Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act ties the hands of the Forest Service and it is worse than a bail-out, as it mandates the federal government to keep a private, commercial enterprise operating on public land, regardless of the ecological consequences, both now and into perpetuity. This public lands grazing mandate MUST be removed from the RMFHA.
• This bill has special provisions for Wilderness management that should raise red flags to those who support Wilderness. This bill currently contains language for overflights, as it relates to commercial and general aviation, that is unprecedented in the history of the Wilderness Act and needs to go. The military overflights language, while bad, is pretty standard fare nowadays. But this language seems to preclude efforts to control or limit flightseeing or other overflights, which are incredibly disruptive to visitors, wildlife and Wilderness. Please REMOVE this language from the RMFHA.
• The language for maintaining existing facilities for livestock grazing is more liberal than previous Wilderness bills. The language incorporating State or local agencies for controlling fire, insects and disease promotes the trend toward devolution of federal public lands and is objectionable on that basis. Please REMOVE this language from the RMFHA.
• Much of the noxious weed stuff in the bill is all about taxpayer funding for dropping tons of poisons on the ground (while also mandating that all existing livestock grazing continue forever). If this were an effective strategy there wouldn’t be weeds in Montana. Given the complexities and unknowns of controlling weeds, especially with a rapidly changing climate and an escalating number of encroaching weed species, the called-for management strategy needs to focus on an assessment of existing weed infestations, the causes, potential controls, costs, likelihood of success, and clearly stated, measurable objectives to determine whether the controls are effective, and what will be done if they aren’t or if the funding doesn’t come through. At a minimum, this section of the bill should call for the plan to be written by an independent team of scientists.
Many substantive concerns regarding the Rocky Mountain Heritage Act have been expressed by a number of organizations and many experienced, dedicated wilderness and forest protection activists. Many Montana wilderness supporters remain disappointed that the Act would only designate a small fraction of Wilderness-deserving lands on the Rocky Mountain Front as Wilderness, while leaving too much of the Front open to logging and other forms of development.
We’ve tried to get the Coalition to Protect the Rocky Mountain Front to listen to our concerns and add more protections to the unparalleled wildlife habitat and wildlands on the Rocky Mountain Front, but, unfortunately, they seem more concerned with politics and the appeasing the opinions of the anti-wilderness crowd.
As with any piece of legislation, we’d encourage people to read the actual language of the bill (http://ncfp.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/s-…). In order to fully understanding the bill language, and what it would mean for future management of public lands, it also helps to have a solid working understanding of bedrock environmental laws such as the National Environmental Policy Act, National Forest Management Act and certainly an understanding of the Wilderness Act. We’d put forth that perhaps there is more to the proposed Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act than simply taking the talking points of supporters at face value. The Rocky Mountain Front means a lot of things to lots of people and we will likely only get one chance to protect this world-class area.
Wilderness supporters should take action and let Montana's Congressional Delegation and the Senate's ENR Committee know about substantive concerns with the current bill language and how to make the bill better for Wilderness, for wildlife and for future generations.
I support completely protecting of our remaining roadless wildlands as Wilderness. I also support putting local people to work on bona-fide restoration projects to restore our national forests. I also have little doubt that the majority of people in Montana support Wilderness protection and keeping our public wildlands the way they are.
Over the past three year many Montanans – as well as Americans – have expressed serious, substantive concerns with Senator Tester’s FJRA. Concerns and opposition has come from not only the 50 plus conservation organizations that make up the Last Best Place Wildlands Campaign, but also from conservation groups such as the Sierra Club, Defenders of Wildlife, Natural Resources Defense Council, Center for Biological Diversity and Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility – some of the most respected environmental groups in our nation. Concerns have also been expressed publicly from some of the former Chiefs of the Forest Service and a host of former Forest Service supervisors and district rangers.
If one looks beyond the flowery rhetoric and actually deals with the substance of the bill, one will clearly see that the Forest Jobs and Recreation Act (FJRA) has one member of Congress – for the first time in America’s history – simply mandating how much logging should take place in our public National Forest lands. This dangerous precedent would open the door for other members of Congress to simply mandate more logging, oil & gas drilling, grazing or mining on federal public lands in their own states.
Senator Tester’s mandate to increase logging levels on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge and Kootenai National Forests comes at a time when the economic crisis has resulted in nearly a 75% reduction in new home/business construction in the U.S. and almost a 50% reduction in over all U.S. lumber consumption.
This is part of the economic reality that supporters of Tester’s FJRA never once have gotten around to responding to. Instead, the "collaborators" (with organizations such as the Montana Wilderness Association) pushing this mandated logging bill make it seem as if no logging is taking place on Montana's National Forests because of lawsuits and bickering. Well, you want to know the truth? Over the past five years the Forest Service in Region One (which includes all national forest in Montana, northern Idaho and the Black Hills in SD) has sold enough timber to fill 239,000 log trucks, which if lined up end-to-end, would stretch 2,048 miles, or nearly from Missoula, Montana to New York City.
Instead of admitting this reality we're told by politicians and collaborators that we need to have Congress step in to mandate more logging. Does that make economic sense? Ecological sense? Taxpayer sense?
Based on recent cost estimates from federal timber sales in Montana, Senator Tester’s mandate to log 100,000 acres (156 square miles) on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge and Kootenai National Forests could cost U.S. taxpayers $100 million over the lifetime of the bill. That’s why, during official Senate testimony, the head of the US Forest Service had this to say about the federal budget implications of Senator Tester’s logging mandates:
“We would urge you to consider the budgetary implications to meet the bill’s requirements. If we were to go forward with the FJRA it would require far greater resources to do that and it will require us to draw these monies from forests within Region One or from other Regions….My concern [with FJRA] is that there will be somewhat of a balkanization that occurs between the different Forest Service regions in the country. Those [National Forests] who are first in may get funded and those who come later may find there are less funds available. There will be certain ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ that result from this process. Then in someways there is no longer a national review, an effort to sift out what priorities ought to exist across the country.”
The FJRA would also turn some of Montana’s roadless wildlands – including Wilderness Study Areas protected by former Montana Senator Lee Metcalf – into permanent motorized recreation areas and would allow motors and other non-compatible uses in Wilderness. Again, this is something never acknowledged by bill supporters.
Take, for example, the 229,710 acre West Pioneers Inventoried Roadless Areas (IRA), which includes the 151,00 acre Metcalf Wilderness Study Area (WSA). What Sen Tester’s bill does is turn 129,252 acres of this IRA into a permanent, motorized Recreation Management Area (RMA). Not even the “Beaverhead Partnership” supported this. Do we really want politicians ignoring the Forest Service’s travel plans to just legislate where they want motorized recreation permanently permitted?
Or take, for example, what Tester wants to do to the West Big Hole IRA, a 213,987 acre area along the crest of the continental divide that provides linkages and connectivity between the Greater Yellowstone area and forests to the west and north. Sen Tester’s bill turns just 44,084 acres of this IRA into two small, far-apart Wilderness Areas while turning much of the IRA into a single, large, permanent, motorized National Recreation Area (NRA) totaling 94,237 acres. The large NRA would be twice as large as the two proposed Wilderness areas together and access to these two proposed Wilderness areas would be forced to use the motorized NRA trails. Again, this extreme move by Senator Tester to mandate motorized recreation in our wildlands wasn’t even supported by the “Beaverhead Partnership” in their original proposal.
According to George Nickas – one of the nation’s leading experts on the Wilderness Act – from Wilderness Watch, “While the bill is improved in some areas due to the efforts of groups in the Last Best Place Wildlands Campaign as well as Senate committee staff, the FJRA still stands for the unacceptable proposition that local politicians should largely dictate management of national public lands. The FJRA, with its politically mandated logging levels, off-road vehicle and snowmachine playgrounds, and similar mandates, flies in the face of almost a century of public lands’ policy evolution that has made America’s public lands protections the envy of conservationists around the world.”
Unfortunately, Senator Tester has refused to accept the fact that the Forest Jobs and Recreation Act contains a number of irresponsible and unnecessarily risky provisions, which not only will cause negative impacts to Forest Service budgets in our region, but also threatens America’s national forest legacy by establishing a new precedent where DC politicians simply mandate resource extraction levels on our public lands.
These are the real reasons why Senator Tester’s bill never made it out of the Senate’s Dem-controlled Energy and Natural Resources Committee and why the FJRA can’t stand on it’s own merits. Therefore we see Senator Tester trying for the past two sessions of Congress to (unsuccessfully) attach the FJRA as a rider to must-pass legislation.
Finally, don't believe the hype from this letter writer and the "collaborators" that "recent polls show over 70% of Montanans support the Forest Jobs and Recreation Act. The truth is that there has NEVER been one single independent poll EVER conducted about the FJRA. There have been two or three internal polls conducted, written and paid for by these very same "collaborator" organizations, who have spent millions of dollars running a campaign to try and pass this mandated logging bill. The questions used in these polls were written in such a way as to be very one-sided in favor of FJRA and represent more of a "push poll." Those polls are no more unbiased than internal polls conducted by Karl Rove and his Crossroads GPS group. In fact, early on, award-winning outdoors columnist Bill Schneider wrote this update about one of these secret, internal polls. (See "Question 7" here: http://www.newwest.net/topic/article/teste…).
Of course, supporters of Senator Tester and his mandated logging bill don't much like these substantive facts about the specific language of the bill, or specific tactics of their campaign, to be made public. However, these federal public lands belong equally to all Americans and we all have a right to stand up and say "No thank you Senator Tester" if one politician, and a handful of timber mill owners and well-paid "collaborators" think they can forever change our national forest legacy by simply opening up the flood-gates for other politicians to start mandating a resource extraction level on national forests in their states. Thanks.
A group of Northern Cheyenne's from Lame Deer Montana also made the 1,200 mile round trip to testify. You can read more about it here:
And where do you think Montana Hunters and Angers got their money?
A Montana hunting-and-angling group with Democratic ties has made a large TV ad buy rapping Republican U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg for his support of a bill that gives the U.S. Border Patrol access to all federal lands for border-security purposes.
Calling the bill a “federal land grab of the highest order,” Montana Hunters and Anglers Action bought ads in the Missoula and Billings television markets that urged viewers to call Rehberg and ask him to oppose the bill.
The ads, airing on network and cable TV stations, began Monday and will continue for three weeks, said Land Tawney of Missoula, president of the newly formed group.
Tawney, a senior manager for the National Wildlife Federation, wouldn’t reveal the cost of the buy, but sources told the Lee Newspapers State Bureau that it’s between $200,000 and $250,000….
The group registered with the Montana secretary of state’s office on Oct. 6 as a nonprofit group.
In addition to Tawney, its officers include Democratic state Sen. Kendall Van Dyk of Billings; Barrett Kaiser, a Billings communications consultant and former aide to U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont.; and George Cooper, a senior vice president for a Washington, D.C., lobbying firm and former news producer for CNN.
As a 501(c) (4) “educational” group, Montana Hunters and Anglers Action is not required to reveal its financial donors. Tawney said the donors have asked not to be identified, but that they include individuals and organizations.
Montana "welcoming"? Obviously, Y'all have never been to the east side of the state where if you don't have the right last name, you are considered to be an outsider, even though you were born and raised there. BUT .. marry the right last name and you suddenly become a "local". I know that the east side has problems with the oilfiled right now, but their self-centered snobbery has existed for generations.
Right on my brother coyote hunter. I offten wonder how many of these people who bitch about what we do would care if they saw what a coyote will do to a family pet. They live in this make believe world where they go get their food from a store not knowing how their food gets to them. Next I wonder how many women out there know how the makeup they wear to take their sorry ass's to the store to get their food is tested before it go's on sale for them to buy. Well its tested on animals yeppers all your cosmetecs get put nto the eyes of rabbits and such just to make sure it wont bother your eyes when yo buy it. So shut the f*** up and when you start rasing your own food and killing it yourself and stop wearing makeup then come and talk to me about killing a predator. Women and men are predators and God put me at the top of the food chain for a reason.
The new Top Hat owner needs to be open to the arts community and stop shutting out genres of music he deems inappropriate for the space. The Missoula music scene is TINY and by doing that he risks loosing his venue AND vision.
Whoa, came across this after searching for information on another spill that happened on the reservation this year. Reread my own comment. I guess it might sound defensive, but I was just trying to clarify some things because a lot of misinformation got out there when this story spread so quickly. Now, I realize those little inaccuracies are inevitable and usually not worth correcting in the comments section of a local news blog. :P Oh, well. Thanks for the encouragement.
I can understand Dr Robertson's confusion, since she is trying to compare life circumstances that are entirely different, and doctor/patient relationship that couldn't be less similar.
When a patient is terminally ill, facing weeks or even months of untreatable agony, they have a right to get from their physician a realistic and honest prognosis. If the prognosis is negative, they have a right to consider their options, and to ask the physician for counseling on those options.
There is nothing in current or proposed practice that requires a physician to urge any particular course on the patient. There's no "steering people to suicide in Montana", and over 14 years of experience in Oregon with its 'Death with Dignity' law have provided ample proof that guidelines can be crafted that protect the patient and the doctor.
False comparisons, fabricated horror stories, and dire predictions of fictitious "abuse" don't serve to protect anyone.
If Dr Robertson is concerned about protecting terminally ill patients, her time and efforts might be better spent working to improve Montana's protection of the elderly in abusive home environments or poorly-monitored assisted living facilities. Perhaps she might question the adequacy of the Dept of Health and Human Services' budget for those protections. I'm sure there are members of the Legislature who would be glad to take part in such consideration.
Sen Hinkle has consistently repeated the exaggerations and fabricated horror stories of fundamentalist zealots in his determination to use government to impose their narrow dogma on people who don't share it.
Oregon has had their 'Death with Dignity' law in place for over 14 years. I've challenged Sen Hinkle before to provide credible detail of even ONE instance of abuse under that law. He has never done so, nor has any other of the people who are trying to interfere with the patient/doctor relationship.
Sen Hinkle is also being disingenuous when he claims that the Montana Supreme Court decision does not protect physicians from prosecution. That decision stated, clearly and definitely, that there is nothing in the Constitution nor in case law that prohibits such assistance by a physician. Certainly an ardent ideologue could initiate proceedings against a physician, but the Court decision is an absolute defense.
It's likely that the Legislature will discuss this issue again. Hopefully, they won't duck their responsibility yet again.
Forget Delta, how 'bout Southwest!?!
I've lived in Missoula since 2009 and have never flown out of MSO. With fares running what I've experienced flying from Chicago and Nashville to GERMANY, it's never been a cost effective option. I much rather spend $150-200 driving 2,000 miles over two days, than paying $550-650 for 4-8 hours on planes and in airports. One December when I went to visit family in Tennessee, I chose the still cheaper option of driving to Whitefish, taking a train to Chicago, flying Southwest to Nashville and repeating for my return--it saved me around $150.
I feel I won't see affordable long-distance air travel in and out of Missoula or passenger rail on the southern route before I move on to somewhere else.
I wish Kalispell would do the same....
Awesome read!!! Love reading about other places to go. I usually find good spots with my app....Never camp or glamp without it...check it out! http://bit.ly/OcoYc2
@ DL I know that Coyotes are a problem for people, but we invaded their space and we expect them to stay away. I think that is ridiculous and lame. Keep you dog and cat in the house or build a high enough fence for your animals so they are safe. They don't go after people so get real and realize, mankind did not leave them any choice.
Besides, even if you are for killing them, the way the guy does it in this feed is inhumane and cruel. Get a life.
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