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Old 10-24-2012   #11
Cpt. No Scout
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Originally Posted by phlyingfish View Post
I agree that selling the public land to the highest bidder would be bad. I'm also pretty sure that the Commissioners of Idaho County have next to no power to make that happen. Hell, Arizona is trying to take control of the Grand Canyon by statewide referendum. That initiative is equally likely to go nowhere.

For the next time someone suggests "privatizing" federal land, here's some suggested reading. It's out of the US Constitution, so you know it's good. Check out Article VI, clause 2. Then check out a land ownership map of Idaho county. The federal government owns most of it and has done so since before Idaho was even a state. That's not changing any time soon "Constitution or Laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding."

That said, the incumbent has a point about the lack of economic opportunity in Idaho county. It's just that his proposed solution is nuts. Seems like your guy should be talking about real options instead of getting into a debate on privatization.
I really like what you are saying here. But thats the same thing they said about pot 20 years ago! I agree that it would be an up hill battle now. But 20 years from now me thinks things could change. Maybe, just maybe this issue needs shot in the foot now. Let us not test the constitution. It can be amended.

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Old 10-24-2012   #12
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Originally Posted by idahofloater View Post
But thats the same thing they said about pot 20 years ago!
Last I checked, federal and Idaho law still considers pot a controlled substance. If anything has changed in the last 20 years, it's not the legality.

Plus, there is a big difference between legalizing weed and turning over public lands to states that lack the resources to manage them. One is a social policy choice; the other is nothing short of giving away one of this country's greatest assets. One has growing support across a broad cross-section of the population; the other is an overused talking point for right wingers pissed about land use restrictions. One, arguably, has broader social benefits; the other would only benefit a few timber, mining, oil, and gas concerns.

Originally Posted by idahofloater View Post
Let us not test the constitution. It can be amended.
True. Amendments are possible (but really hard to do). The likelihood of removing the Supremacy Clause, a foundational part of our federal system, is nil. You might as well throw the whole constitution out at that point because it would be essentially worthless. Until that--or some major, politically suicidal changes in federal government land policy--happens, the Selway, Lochsa, and Salmon will remain public property.

That's not to say we shouldn't be vigilant about how the feds manage these places. But that's a different conversation.

"A river is more than an amenity, it is a treasure."
-Oliver Wendell Holmes writing for the majority in New Jersey v. New York
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Old 10-24-2012   #13
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I agree that a Constitutional change is a non-starter, but most people would be surprised to see how much work is being done to divest our public lands. Don't forget, the western states have an extremely disproportionate number of Senators per population, and at least five presidential candidates, including the Republican candidate, have said the era of public lands should come to an end.

Our land and our rivers should be our children's land and rivers.
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Old 10-24-2012   #14
Cpt. No Scout
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With the pot thing. My point is: "that 20 years ago, noone thought that you could legalize pot. But now its looking possible." Thats all. I agree that amendments are tough. but in 20 years who knows. I mean who would have thought that the supreme court would have given coperations the "right to free speach." I just don't trust the interests of big money. You can buy just about anything these days in america, including government officals and laws. I just don't what us to say; "Its in the constitution therefore it will always be!" And I do agree that we need to vigilant. thanks phlyingfish.

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