When the Devil Shows Up

If the media knew the background of American Lands Alliance, todays headlines would more accurately read “Spotted Owl Campaign comes East, this time aims at private land.”

Or how about this headline: “American Lands Alliance announces blueprint for rural cleansing in the Northeast.”

Heres some truth about ALA to balance off the malarkey spewed yesterday about propaganda in an American Lands “white paper,” saying Maine forests are destroyed and that Maine needs more forest regulations, more no-go wilderness areas, and a Maine Woods National Park.

Abby Holman of Maine Forest Products Council is quoted in one of todays stories running in the Bangor Daily News and the Blethen chain that Jonathan was “Chicken Little.”

What is unfolding is not a fairy tale. What she might well have done was unmask Demos, and the charade they put on yesterday, with, “Hey, these are the guys (ALA) who shut down the Northwest and Demos being here means that now theyre coming after us!”

When the Devil shows up you know youre in trouble, so who cares what he says? In Demoss case, just his showing up IS the news. Being in the company of Carter just confirms it.

Remember this: American Lands Alliance changed its name from Western Ancient Forest Campaign, the name it was using over ten years ago when it was fighting to shut down the timber economy in the Northwest using the spotted owl and the Endangered Species Act.

The fiscal agent for the Spotted Owl Campaign was the Wilderness Society. There were plenty of funds to be agent of, since tax-exempt foundations were pouring millions into the massive campaign.

Chairman and Manager of the National Ancient Forest Campaign was Brock Evans, now on the board of Massachusetts-based RESTORE: The North Woods. (RESTORE is infamous in Maine because they want a Maine Woods National Park and the people in the Parks area are outspoken in their dislike for the notion of federalizing their land for a park.) He is also Executive Director of the Endangered Species Coalition, made up of more than 230 large and small national, regional and local environmental groups.

Evans own resume says that he had “Primary responsibility for preparation, buildup and mobilization of resources of National Audubon Society, plus resources of the 100 member organization Ancient Forest Alliance, in a major scientific/legislative campaign to rescue the remaining ancient forests of the Nation on Federal lands in Washington, Oregon and California. At its peak, supervised paid staff of eleven individuals, plus approximately 200 paid consultants. Coordinated activities of several hundred volunteers, raised funds, prepared and implemented budgets of up to $500,000 per year; primary responsibility for all legal, scientific, political and administrative efforts of what evolved into a major national campaign involving the entire environmental community.”

To recap: They were all in the Spotted Owl bed together, National Audubon Society (Brock Evans), Western Ancient Forest Campaign (now American Lands Alliance, Jonathans pals), the Wilderness Society (which acted as the fiscal agent), and the Sierra Club (whose Washington DC office Brock Evans had once headed).

For a good account of the Spotted Owl Campaign devastation, the environmental groups and foundations who did it, read Undue Influence by author Ron Arnold:

“One single environmentalist lawsuit, the highly publicized Spotted Owl dispute, shut down a substantial part of the federal timber harvest, resulting in the closure (between 1-1-89 through 11-30-97) of 187 mills in Oregon, Washington, and California and the loss of 22,654 jobs – and concentrated the timber industry in the hands of big companies that owned their own private timberlands. Then the big timberland owners felt environmental laws reaching to their private lands as well. “

American Lands Alliance moving into the Northeast is the worst possible news for Maine and our great forest industry.

Were in trouble, not only because of our enemies, but because were not recognizing our enemies. The press is not recognizing them and industry itself is not recognizing them. They take any talking head at face value, without doing a background check. (Forget guns, we need background checks on people from away who come in to “save” us.)

And it makes you wonder if maybe theres more to the Pingree Easement than meets the eye. Perhaps they see the handwriting on the wall and figure that selling off the valuable commercial rights of their lands forever is a way of getting out of Dodge ahead of the Devilwithout leaving town.

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