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December 17, 2008

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Discussion Topic: Obama Picks Salazar For Interior

From the Chicago Tribune:

Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Colo.), a Western Latino with deep grounding in water and land issues, is President-elect Barack Obama’s choice to lead the Interior Department. . . .

Salazar led Colorado's Department of Natural Resources and served as the state's attorney general before winning a vacant Senate seat in 2004 . . . .



The Colorado senator campaigned vigorously for Obama in the Rocky Mountain state this fall, barnstorming rural areas in an RV preaching alternative energy development and its potential to revitalize economies.
After the election, he urged Obama to build his economic stimulus package around investments in energy infrastructure.

Your reaction?

Comments

Ben Johnston

Im not too good when it comes to all the political mumbo-jumbo that is going around these days, and I hear alot of different talk. Some good and others bad. I am an avid sportsman and enjoy every aspect of the great outdoors and have done so for many years. My father got me hooked and now I have two sons of my own to turn on to the outdoors. So now I feel I should be more active in the way the outdoors in being manged and what is being done with our lands and waters.
I, for one, voted for Obama because I believe he has the "right" outlook on what this great Nation needs to do and I believe he can do it. So if he elected this man Salazar to lead the Interior Department, then he has to be a good man and good at what he does. He sounds to me like a man that, like Obama, knows what he needs to do and instead of just planming and talking about it, does what he says he is going to do.
I think this is a great idea and I hope to see more "helping-hands" getting involved with the outdoors and the recreation that we all love so much.

UB3L

Mr. Johnston

Perhaps you've never been to Washington, D.C. Just because a president picks someone does not mean that he is both a "good" man and "good" at what he does; it rarely says anything regarding that person's fitness for the job. Rather, appointments such as these are often payment-in-kind for services or donations during election season.
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I think you'll find, as a sportsman (if you are what you claim), that too many "helping-hands" in the outdoors tends to confuse the situation, often restricts opportunities and freedom in the wilderness instead of liberating hunters and sportmen/women alike, and obfuscates the real issues faced by the environment because all of the environmental lobbies want to have their say and piece of the pie.
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Instead of energy alternatives, perhaps Mr. Salazar can focus his attention on combating the massive narcotics industry blooming in our national parks (pun intended) and stamping out the ridiculous fees and restrictions hunters and sportsmen have to endure so that they may use the resources owned through their tax contributions.

bnorth

I'm interested to hear anyone's views on how Ken Salazar stacks up agains Mike Thompson. In fact, Salazar was apparently a bit of a sleeper, having been no mention of him up until he was named to the cabinet. Is this good or bad? Does he have the same support of the Sierra Club and other big sportsman's groups? At first glance, he looks like he might be a good cantidate, but it's my understanding that he has ties to big time ranching. How will that influence his decisions if that rumor is true? Thoughts?

William

Actually, in my state focusing on energy alternaties goes hand in hand with helping hunters. If we can find an alternative fuel to petroleum products then we won't need ethanol and more land will be put into conservation programs rather than cropland. More land in CRP means more acres of good hunting. The "narcotics industry" in non-huntable parks and my license fees are the last of my concerns in relation to hunting. I worry about dwindling access to hunting land and polluted rivers that spawn fewer and fewer fish every year. Only time will tell how Obama's appointment performs.

pete

Alternative energy sources need to be pursued and developed, but there will continue to be a great need for base load power supply. Wind and solar energy sounds great, but are not continually producing megawatts. Its fashionable to be green these days, but not realistice to believe we can simply eliminate fossil fuels. Technologic advancements are available to clean up coal fired plants even more than in the past. Oil and gas can be developed responsibly and typically leave impacted land more productive for wildlife habitat than prior to development. The best solutions to our problems are almost never found at extreme positions. Be wary of the pendalum swinging to the extreme ends.

rj

This is a little off the subject,
but why not combination systems? should we require wind/solar power systems on the same site as coal plants? should we be putting solar and wind systems in with oil wells?

UB3L

You know, the funny thing about all this "energy alternative(s)" talk is that no one have mentioned nuclear power; like it's some sort of taboo subject or not even a consideration. Do you folks realize that France is storing thirty years worth of nuclear waste in a room under the Hague? A single room!!! All because they reprocess their nuclear waste and derive it down to a minimal amount; we would have the same capabilities but the green nutjobs in this country put a stop to that in the 1970s. Nuclear technology has come a long way since 3 mile island and Trynoble (sp?).
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As for my comment about narcotics in parks, William, that should certainly be a tremendous concern for you if you are concerned about open hunting land and clean rivers. First, these growing operations dump harmful unregulated pesticides and other chemicals into the soils which then wash down into the streams; and this is stuff like DDT and chemicals from Mexico that have been banned in the US for a long time. Not too mention that these operations cut down trees and destroy habitat and make our forests unsafe for even non-hunting parties. Also, you might consider that lobbying the interior department to open up more parks to hunting so as to make these growing operations harder to conceal and/or start-up. This would certainly address your concern for "opening up more hunting lands."

nlKevin

Hey,
Just a quick off topic comment in response to the last post.
I totally agree about the nuclear issue, but do you know anything more about France storing waste in The Hague?
I used to live there, so I'm just personally curious.
Thanks

William

UB3L- I agree that the narcotics industry in parks isn't doing anyone except criminals favors. I just think that this issue has been overstated compared to other issues as I've never personally seen this problem. I would certainly think differently if it was legal to hunt in national parks and forests. I have seen good land that I've hunted in the past turn into fenced in cornfields and posted.

UB3L

nlKevin,

Don't know much more than that. I read an article on nuclear storage in Europe some time ago and it discussed the generalities of french nuclear waste storage but not the specifics b/c of nat. sec. concerns I am sure. The nuc. plants are guarded like military bases.




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