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Commentaries and editorials

May the Next President
be as Courageous

by P-I Readers
Seattle Post-Intelligencer, December 3, 2007

P-I Readers post online comments to Editorial Opinion

Posted by Ladystar at 12/3/07 2:11 p.m.

As I cast my vote for George Bush, it was with great hope that he would overturn environmental laws that had a stranglehold on American industry.

Industry has been devastated by a band of lunatics, and junk science. They have destroyed our country, and the livelihood of the people, claiming to save one species, or another. We were in desperate need of a President with common sense. One who would not be afraid to challenge the cult that has been robbing the people of this country of their rights, and freedom. May the next President be as courageous. We need a leader, not a follower.

Posted by Joel Kawahara at 12/3/07 2:20 p.m.

USFW is not the only agency that prodices politicaly tainted work. NOAA Fisheries, primary author of the Columbia River Biological Opinion has produced another document of convienence in their recent BIOP. Even though NOAA has admitted in previous BIOPs that removal of the four lower Snake River dams is the alternative that has the highest probability of recovery of Snake River Chinook runs, NOAA has consistently written a BIOP that does not incorporate this necessary step in salmon recovery.

This is not because of the many hard working and consciencious fish biologists working at both NOAA Fisheries and USFW - in fact the BIOP is written in spite of the research at both NOAA and USFW.

A quick examination of the comments of the Fish and Wildlife departments of both Washington and Oregon show how politics shapes science in those two states. Oregon has consistently asked for stronger salmon measures than Washington, just as Governor Gregoire has not engaged in Columbia River Salmon Recovery but Governor Kulongowski has.

Congress has been repeatedly asked to answer the energy question surrounding the removal of the four Lower Snake River dams, but has declined to authorize studies by the Army Corps of Engineers. Congressman Brian Beard has been steadfast in refusing to see the energy and transportation questions answered - maybe the many visits to his office from Columbia River Partners has something to do with it?

Biologists can not point to any factor that is large enough in the salmon life history beyond catastrophic alteration of their in-river habitat by dam building to account for the decline in their populations on the Snake and Columbia Rivers. Congress must decide to solve the problem of salmon decline and stop going alone with the status quo. Putting out BIOPs that insult science and condem salmon runs to extinction is just as wrong as the actions by USFW. Congressional action is needed here too.

P-I Readers
May the Next President be as Courageous
Seattle Post-Intelligencer, December 3, 2007

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