Is going to shine some light on Senator Tester's bill: http://testerloggingbilltruths.wordpress.com
I grew up in the rural Wisconsin village of Elkhart Lake, in Sheboygan County, surrounded by dairy farms and the Kettle Moraine State Forest. I've…
RE: American Lung Association air quality report
According to the ALA, Missoula's air quality is among worst in nation for short-term particle pollution. Meanwhile, apparently there's a mole at the State DEQ who let's Roseburg Forest Products know when the state isn't available for monitoring, hence Roseburg can dump extra emissions into our fragile airshed. Does this DEQ insider also alert other industries around Montana when monitoring will, or will not, take place?
Good article. With all the energy rhetoric from politicians in DC, Helena and elsewhere, one has to wonder why facts, such as: "In 2011, for the first time, we exported more refined gasoline, diesel and other petroleum-based fuels than we imported" aren't front-n-center in any energy policy debate?
Take the Keystone XL pipeline for example. MT Public Radio recently interviewed Senator Tester about his Keystone XL support. Give the interview a listen.
Sally Maulk did an excellent job asking Sen Tester some tough questions about his Keystone XL support, and really took him to task for some of his simple rhetoric about Keystone XL being part of America's energy future, despite the fact that all that Keystone XL tar sands oil is headed for export docks, bound for Asia or Europe.
Too bad she didn't have time to press him about the fact that the US is now exporting more refined gasoline, diesel and other petroleum-based fuels than we import. Sure Tester will attempt some symbolic amendments here and there, but at the end of the day his (and Baucus') support of Keystone XL is undying.
And yet, National Wildlife Federation, which produced the report, wants to mandate a 7-fold increase of industrial logging on the high and dry Beaverhead-Deerlodge NF. NWF also joined their timber industry friends to oppose a lawsuit attempting to protect lynx critical habitat in a highly logged-over part of Montana. #hypocrites
Mr. Dieken: Perhaps you should check a map. These megaloads are shipping up the Columbia and then up the Snake River to a Port near Lewiston, Idaho. South Dakota and North Dakota are a long way from Lewiston, Idaho, so that would be quite the detour you claim that ND and SD will allow through their state. Sorry, but geography matters. Better luck with your insults next time.
It's worth remembering that Smurfit-Stone officials apparently lied to the public back in 2011 when they told us their mill site was clean and safe for development.
Smurfit-Stone: Frenchtown mill site is clean, safe for development
Missoulian, March 12, 2011
It's also worth remembering that the Smurfit-Stone pulp mill was one of the original "timber partners" that was part of Sen Tester's mandated logging bill, the Forest Jobs and Recreation Act. This bill would result in industrial logging on over 156 square miles of the Beaverhead-Deerlodge and Kootenia National Forests, including within critical habitat for grizzly bears. Tester's FJRA also would designate over 1,000,000 acres of inventoried roadless areas on the BHDL NF as "Timber suitable or open to harvest." Senator Tester's key point person on staff for his mandated logging bill was Tracy Stone Manning.
During late 2008 and 2009, Smurfit-Stone and other pulp and paper corporations across the country found an unintended loophole in a previous Transportation Bill, which allowed them to collect (directly from the wallets of US Taxpayers) 50 cents for every gallon of diesel fuel they added and burned to a decades-old practice of burning the pulping byproduct called "black liquor." To be clear, the only reason Smurfit-Stone and these pulp mills added diesel fuel to their "black liquor" was to exploit this tax loophole.
To the Missoula Indy's credit, they were the only Missoula media outlet to devote any attention to this issue. See http://missoulanews.bigskypress.com/missou….
During 2009, Smurfit collected $654 MILLION ($654,000,000.00) from US taxpayers utilizing this "black liquor tax credit boondoggle." In order to accomplish this amazing $654 million feat, corporation-wide Smurfit's pulp mills had to burn approximately 1.3 BILLION gallons of diesel fuel, which they had zero reason to burn, except to collect that $654 million from US taxpayers.
Looks like the taxpayer boondoggle will continue, as taxpayers will now be funding the cleanup of Smurfit's toxic mill site. Hey, but at least the Smufit-Stone executives got their bonuses, right? Given the fact that Senator Tester and Tracy Stone Manning worked so hard to keep Smurfit-Stone open with their mandated logging bill, and the fact that that office never once spoke out publicly against this $654 million black liquor boondoggle, perhaps DEQ Director Manning will do a good job with the clean-up, as I think she owes us one. Thanks.
FYI: Today the National Wildlife Federation and Montana Hunters and Anglers are engaging in a new round of censorship, removal of comments and banning on their social media sites (I have screen shots of the pages if anyone wants proof) in an attempt prevent the general public from knowing about their secret, anonymous, dark money ways. Yep, that's how these self-professed "sportsmen" groups roll.....You know what boys, this isn't personal, it's about DEMOCRACY.
RE: Buying your vote and secret, Dark Money
The ProPublica reporters have turned their attention to the Dark Money groups that supported Dems this last election cycle. Read below to see what ProPublica's in-depth investigation uncovered.
Seems pretty clear from this investigation that we have secret, Dark Money groups and individuals threatening our democracy living right here in Missoula and representing Montanans in our state house. Hopefully the Missoula Indy will take this ball and run with it.
In Montana, Dark Money Helped Democrats Hold a Key Senate Seat
By Kim Barker, ProPublica
Snips: "No one from Montana Hunters and Anglers returned calls for comment." Many liberal groups active in Montana, including Montana Hunters and Anglers, were connected through Hilltop Public Solutions, a Beltway consulting firm. Barrett Kaiser, a former aide to Montana's other Democratic senator, Max Baucus, is a partner at Hilltop and runs its office in Billings....Kaiser was on the board of the Montana Hunters and Anglers dark money group. Another Hilltop employee in Billings served as the treasurer for the Montana Hunters and Anglers super PAC. Hilltop partners in Washington also helped run two other dark money groups that spent money on the Montana race: the Citizens for Strength and Security Fund and the Partnership to Protect Medicare....No one from Hilltop returned calls...."
Additional information about "Montana Hunters and Anglers Action" is below.
SNIPS: "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….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."
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