Saved Memories About Memorial Day For Memorial Day 2014

 

THE FOLLOWING WAS OFFERED AS A PART OF VALLEY VIEW CHRISTIAN CHURCH’S WEEKLY UPDATE.  IT WAS SENT TO THE CONGREGATION ON MAY 28, 2010 BY THE PASTOR, BRANDON SHAFFER.  WE FIRST POSTED IT ON MAY 30, 2010 (DAY BEFORE MEMORIAL DAY) AND WE POST IT NOW ON THE DAY BEFORE MEMORIAL DAY, MAY 26 2014

A Note From Brandon

Memorial Day, perhaps more than any other holiday, was born of human necessity. Deep inside all of us lies a fundamental desire to make sense of life and our place in it and the world. What we have been given, what we will do with it and what we will pass to the next generation is all part of an unfolding history, a continuum that links one soul to another. Abraham Lincoln pondered these thoughts in the late fall of 1863. His darkest fear was that he might well be the last president of the United States, a nation embroiled in the self-destruction of what he described as “a great civil war..testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure.” He began his remarks with those words as he stood on the battlefield near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on November 19th of that year. The minute’s speech that became known as Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address turned into what might be called the first observance of Memorial Day. Lincoln’s purpose that day was to dedicate a portion of the battlefield as a cemetery for the thousands of men, both living and dead, who consecrated that soil in the sacrifice of battle. Said Abraham Lincoln: “That from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause which they gave the last full measure of devotion…that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom…” The next year, a pleasant Sunday in October of 1864 found a teenage girl, Emma Hunter, gathering flowers in a Boalsburg, Pennsylvania cemetery to place on the grave of her father. He was a surgeon who had died in service to the Union Army in that great Civil War. Nearby, Mrs. Elizabeth Meyer was strewing flowers upon the grave of her son Amos, a private who had fallen on the last day of the battle of Gettysburg. Emma respectfully took a few of her flowers and put them on the grave of Amos. Mrs. Meyer, in turn, laid some of her freshly cut blooms on the grave of Dr. Hunter. Both women felt a lightening of their burdens by this act of honoring each other’s loss, and agreed to meet again the next year. This time they agreed they would also visit the graves of those who had no one left to honor them. Both Emma Hunter and Elizabeth Meyer returned to the cemetery in Boalsburg on the day they had agreed, Independence Day, July 4, 1865. This time, though, they found themselves joined by nearly all the residents of the town. Dr. George Hall, a clergyman, offered a sermon, and the community joined in decorating every grave in the cemetery with flowers and flags. The custom became an annual event at Boalsburg, and it wasn’t long before neighboring communities established their own “Decoration Day” each spring. About that same time in 1865, a druggist in Waterloo, New York, Henry C. Welles, began promoting the idea of decorating the graves of Civil War veterans. He gained the support of the Seneca County Clerk, General John B. Murray, and they formed a committee to make wreaths, crosses and bouquets for each veteran’s grave. On May 5, 1866, war veterans marching to martial music led processions to each of three cemeteries, where the graves were decorated and speeches were made by General Murray and local clergymen. The village itself was also decorated with flags at half-mast, evergreen boughs and mourning black streamers. Also, as the Civil War was coming to a close in the spring of 1865, Women’s Auxiliaries of the North and South moved from providing relief to the families and soldiers on their own sides to joining in efforts to preserve and decorate the graves of both sides. A woman of French extraction and leader of the Virginia women’s movement, Cassandra Oliver Moncure, took responsibility of coordinating the activities of several groups into a combined ceremony on May 30. It is said that she picked that day because it corresponded to the Day of Ashes in France, a solemn day that commemorates the return of the remains of Napoleon Bonaparte to France from St. Helena. In 1868, General John A. Logan, first commander of the Grand Army of the Republic issued a General Order establishing May 30 as an official memorial day to pay respect to all those who had died, in war or peace. His order was that the men in his command should spend a portion of that day policing the gravesites, decorating them and supporting whatever ceremonies they could. He hoped that this would spark enough interest to make Memorial Day a permanent national observance. In the intervening decades, Memorial Day has been observed every year, though the day was re-established from May 30 to the last Monday in May. In 1966, President Lyndon Johnson also sanctioned Waterloo, New York as the “official” birthplace of Memorial Day because of the extensive ceremonies established there in 1866. Perhaps General Logan was simply making official what the nation yearned for and spontaneously began to form after the near total destruction of the Civil War. It is that sharing of loss, honoring the sacrifices of those who made possible the lives we enjoy today, and family connections across the generations that keep Memorial Day in our hearts…and always will. SOURCE: “John Shepler’s Writing in a Positive Light.”

 

 

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Central New Mexico Community College Survey

Below you will find a link to a survey from CNM asking folks to take the survey which will help them determine whether they may wish to have an “enhanced,” presence in the Moriarty, Edgewood and East Mountain Area.

Please consider completing the survey and adding any additional classes or training (such as business and information technology courses) in the space provided at the end of the survey.

CNM Survey

Edgewood Chamber Friday Blast 5.23.14

  Friday Blast
          May 23, 2014
The Edgewood Chamber
…working for you!ENJOY YOUR MEMORIAL DAY WEEKENDAND

DON’T FORGET THOSE WHO
MADE THE ULTIMATE SACRIFICE

FOR OUR FREEDOM! 

 Economic Development

If you haven’t taken the Needs Assessment for
Economic Development

survey yet…

click below and take it?  We really want to hear from you!  Click below:

Economic Development Survey

All information is anonymous, so be sure to answer all of the questions.  We want  to prepare an accurate report, and we want to hear from everybody!

Tell folks you know that the survey is available on the Edgewood Chamber website, and on the Town of Edgewood Website under Economic Development.

We will also be forming focus groups, and doing interviews with leaders at the state, county and local level. Deadline for the survey information
has been extended to June 30.

After the data is gathered, we will prepare an Economic Impact Preparation Recommendation Report which will be used by our committee and leaders to help determine what’s next for Edgewood!

 

Leadership Edgewood

 

Our last class for the year will be held in June, with Arts, History and the IRS.

Graduation will take place in early July!

LEADERSHIP EDGEWOOD 2015
BEGINS IN JANUARY 2015!

 

 

Look for the new Chamber decals for members to place in your windows to announce that you are serious about your business and have joined the Edgewood Chamber of Commerce!

 

 

 

-RETRO 66 Events:

Czech Republic Documentary Film Crew;
coming through town 25 May.

They are making a feature length movie about the entire Route

 

66. We will be meeting them at Bob Audettes place on corner of 217 and Route 66 then escorting them to Wildlife West to see the RedTop Diner, where we will serve them

Famous Burritos from Katrinah’s East Mountain Grill, we’ll show them the Bear Barn Art Gallery and quick tour of Wildlife West then off to the Midway Trading Post then Moriarty to see murals, Whiting Bros and LewisAntique Auto & Toy Museum.

Bob Hudson, Moriarty Airport Manager has arranged for a Czechbuilt jet powered glider to take a videographer up to film the entire crew whowill be standing in Lewis’s museum parking lot lined up in the shape of a giant, “CZ”.

We are giving them and the caravan of cars following a welcome packette with brochures from our area and trinkets, handouts and samples.

 

RETRO Contact: relivetheroute66@gmail.com

RETRO Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Relivetheroute

Route 66 Arts Alliance Contact: robin@perfectbuttons.com

Route 66 Arts Alliance Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RT66ArtsAlliance

Bear Barn Art Gallery: gogobone59@copper.net

Meetings:

-Route 66 Arts Alliance; 12 June, Old School House Gallery in Sandia Park. Time to be determined.

-RETRO; 18 June, 2014, 1-2:30 PM at Moriarty Civic  Center; 202 S. Broadway

-RETRO; 16 July, 2014, 1-2:30 PM at Edgewood Community Center; 27 N. Frontage Rd just East of Dairy Queen

-
We are still planning to have our celebration
when theNM Rt. 66 Car Cruise
comes through town on June 7,

 so get those t-shirts pressed and GET READY!!!!!!
We are looking for someone to do a documentary of the entire process.  Please contact; Debbie Pogue at
manager@sunseton66.com

 

     Area Happenings

This Friday Blast Section is reserved for your events or happenings in the area!  If you have an upcoming event or a special happening that you would like to see in the Blast, please email it to the office by Wednesday. Approved information will be reviewed and inserted in the Blast on the following Friday.  

 

 

 

 

 

Title: “Tune In”
Who: East Mountain Dance
What: Spring Dance Recital

When: Saturday, May 24, 2014

2:00PM & 6:30PM

Where: Moriarty High School Performing Arts Center
How Much: $10 for adults and $5 children 12 and under

For information contact the East Mountain Dance by phone at 505-281-6141 or through
e-mail at info@eastmtndance.com
Description:
“Tune In” is a dance recital showcasing our offered classes in numerous styles of
dance, including Ballet, Pointe, Jazz, Modern, Hip Hop, Tap and Gymnastics. It offers
unique performances from The East Mountain Dance Company, current instructors,
along with many ensemble numbers.
The cast is made up of dancers age 3 and up,
all of whom have been rehearsing

for over four months.

 

The Bethel Community Storehouse will be hosting a Free Finance Workshop – Checkbook 101. Wednesday, May 28th 10am. Call 832-6642 for more info

 

Bethel helped 1786 people last month with $11,961.45 worth of goods and services! 5 of those people were homeless, 300 were seniors, 11 were stranded travelers, 1 transient and 329 people were new to our program. Thank you for partnering with Bethel to help our neighbors in need. Don’t forget – Donate*Shop*Volunteer! It’s easy!

Junior Zookeeper Camps for Kids

at Wildlife West Nature Park

Sign up now for a week-long Junior Zookeeper Day Camp at Wildlife West Nature Park in Edgewood.  Children between the ages 8 to 12 years will have a rare opportunity to experience up close and learn about New Mexico’s native wildlife and plants, and observe what animal keepers do on a day to day basis. Children will interact with animals in a safe environment, make toys for the wildlife, observe their behavior, and get behind the scenes tours led by zookeepers.  This five-day camp program runs for four weeks from 9 a.m. to noon, June 2-6th, June 9-13th, June 16-20th and June 23-27th.

The camps are taught by two certified teachers who will cover everything from zoo-keeping and bird-watching techniques, to animal enrichment projects.  Children will learn about the care and basic biology of native wildlife and plants.  This outdoor educational program will help children develop life-long values about wildlife and the environment.

Thanks to funding support from Santa Fe County and the Town of Edgewood, this five-day camp is $25/child for families who live in Edgewood or Santa Fe county, or $60/child for families outside this area.  Daily snacks and drinks will be provided.  Space is limited, so register now online at www.wildlifewest.org or call Wildlife West at 505-2817655.

 

11th Annual East Mountain Fiber Farm & Studio Tour;

 May 31 & June 1; 10 am-4 pm. http://www.eastmountainfibertour.com/
 

-Bear Barn Art Gallery

is open daily 10-5:30 every day except Tuesdays.

Stop by and help support our local artists. Located at Wildlife West Nature Park and Rescued Wildlife Zoo in Edgewood, 87 North Frontage Road past Hunter Building Materials.

Contact Gayle Bone at; 610-8073. gogobone59@copper.net

2014 Livestock Flea Market

Saturday June 7, 2014

8am until the cows come home

on the old Tillery lot, across from McDonalds on Plaza Loop/344

 

Be a seller or vendor:  $10 per seller, anything goes: new or used, tack, livestock, supplies, feed, western wear, crafts etc…

Get there early to get the best bargains! Horserides for the kids, fun for the whole family.

Sponsored by 

High Desert Riders

 

 

 

Light Pole Banners

If you are interested in a banner advertising your business along Route 66 or State Road 344 in Edgewood, you can still order yours!

 If there is a vacant spot or if the Town occupies a spot you wish to occupy along Route 66 and 344, you  

can order through the town office,
only $90.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                     

We welcome re-posting of the blast,
with the understanding that we do not support or participate with any political site.
  

      Edgewood Chamber      Join us on FacebookBoard MeetingMonday June 9 at 6:15pm
Chamber office

 

Luncheon

Thursday June 12

11:30 am
Edgewood

Community Center

 

Mixer

Thursday June 19
Hosted by Seguila’s
Martial Arts

 

Triple Crown Corporate Partners for 2014

RICH Ford Edgewood
EPCOR Water
Wal-Mart
The Independent
SASS

 

Executive Director:

         Madeline Heitzman


Board of Directors

President:
Chris Hopper       2015

Vice President
Robin Markely      2014
Secretary:
Babara Ormand   2015

Treasurer:
Martha Eden          2014   

 

Board Members at Large:

Ray Seagers                  2015

Saul Araque                   2015

Howard Calkins              2014
Tom Torres                    2014

Julie Bassett                  2015

Committees:
Economic Development:

Tom Torres – Jim Bouton

Ambassadors:

                   Howard Calkins

Political Affairs & By Laws:
Ray Seagers

Events:         Robin Markley

Education:   Julie Bassett
Programs:    Staff/Committee
Luncheon:     Martha Eden
Leadership Alumni Group
Kathy Courreges

RETRO Route 66:  

               Madeline Heitzman

Town of Edgewood
Meetings:

meets First and Third Wednesdays of the month
at 6:30pm
Edgewood Community Center
  Planning & Zoning meets First and Third Tuesdays of the month at 6:00pm Edgewood Community Center.

Other Chambers:
East Mountain Chamber meets
the first Thursday of the month at
11:30am.  Call 281-1999 orinfo@eastmountainchamber.comMoriarty Chamber meets
at noon the third Tuesday of the month at the Moriarty Civic Center.  Call 832-4087

 

Mountainair Chamber meets the first Tuesday of the month at 11:30am. 847-2975  or
mcc@mountainairchamber.com

 

About Us 
Hours of Operation:
Monday – Thursday
       9am – 5pmFridays by appointment.
Since we’re a one person office, when we have other meetings or members to visit, we’re not here. Call 850-2523  and we’ll be sure to meet you!Location:95 State Road 344 Ste 3
(Library/Chamber Bldg)
Edgewood, New Mexico

Phone Number

     505-286-2577
e-mail:

info@
edgewoodchambernm.com

 

 

 

 

 

If you are a chamber member,
you can leave your business cards, rack cards and flyers at the Visitors center inside the South door to the Library. Be sure to get your information over here.
It’s part of your benefit as an Edgewood Chamber member!

Stop by the office to see
Madeline if you have
any questions ,
or call my cell 850-2523.

2012 Edgewood Chamber of Commerce – All rights reserved Address:PO Box 457 Edgewood

PO Box 457, Edgewood, NM 87015, USA

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Fraud report for today

Borrowed From Watchdog.org with permission:

Left holding the bag

By   /   May 20, 2014

money bagsWhat would you do with $14.9 million? Would you buy a mansion on a lake, take a trip around the world and stay at every five-star hotel you could find, or would you put this small fortune in the bank and watch it grow? An article in Crain’s Detroit Business describes the case of three men who reaped nearly $15 million from a scheme they set up to falsely bill Medicare.

The story states that over a three-year time period, a physical therapist, a physical therapy assistant and a medical school graduate involved four home health care companies in their scheme to bilk the government benefits program of $14.9 million for services that were never provided. One of the companies hired unlicensed physicians to visit patients, provide them with prescriptions and collect their Medicare number to bill for unnecessary home health care services. (Did I mention that these fraudsters paid kickbacks to patient recruiters including cash and access to narcotic prescriptions?)

Read More Here

- See more at: http://watchdog.org/145488/left-holding-the-bag/?roi=echo3-20556126193-19888367-d4246d67d0b52851c44098b4b9bde75d#sthash.i8WY61hs.HBAcaE7t.dpuf

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Roger Mickelson’s History Today 5.19.14

In 1536, having been found guilty on charges of adultery, Anne Boleyn—the second wife of King Henry VIII of England and the mother of Queen Elizabeth I—was beheaded.

 

Henry VIII of England, who devised the Statute...

Henry VIII of England, who devised the Statute as a way of alleviating his financial problems. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In 1571, Spanish explorer Miguel López de Legazpi established the city of Manila in the Philippines. Legazpi served as the first governor of the Philippines, from 1565 until his death. In 1570 he sent an expedition to the northern island of Luzon, arriving there himself the next year. After deposing a local Muslim ruler, he established Manila, which became the capital of the new Spanish colony and Spain’s major trading port in East Asia. Legazpi repulsed two attacks by the Portuguese, in 1568 and 1571, and easily overcame the poorly organized Filipinos’ resistance. The Muslims in the southern islands resisted Spanish rule up to the 19th century, but Islām was weak in Luzon and the northern islands, and Legazpi and his chaplain, Andrés de Urdaneta, were able to lay the foundations for the conversion of the people to Christianity, which proved their most durable legacy.

 

English: A statue of Miguel López de Legazpi (...

English: A statue of Miguel López de Legazpi (just outside of Fort San Pedro, Cebu City) the Spanish conquistador, who led Spain while they conquered the Philippines (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Thirty Years’ War:    In 1643, the French army defeated the Spanish in the Battle of Rocroi. The Spanish army had crossed the French border from the Netherlands and then stopped to besiege the small fortress of Rocroi, 55 miles northeast of Reims. French Duke d’Enghien advanced rapidly, knowing that the Spaniards were expecting reinforcements. On May 18 both armies positioned themselves with the bulk of their infantry in the center, flanked by two wings of cavalry. Early on May 19 Enghien led a successful cavalry charge of the French right against the Spanish left. The French cavalry of the left also attacked the Spanish right, against his orders, and was repulsed. The Spaniards then followed through by starting their assault on the French center. Meanwhile, Enghien’s cavalry turned to its left and cut its way through the middle of the enemy infantry, thus isolating the elite Spanish soldiers in the front ranks from their less steady German and Italian allies in the rear. Enghien’s troops then reached the cavalry on the Spanish right flank, who were still engaged with the French in their front, and dispersed them. The 8,000 elite Spanish infantry were by now completely isolated, as Enghien’s attack had broken up the rear ranks of supporting German and Italian infantry. Late in the day, when all the available French as well as the captured Spanish guns were turned on them, the Spanish asked to surrender. But as Enghien and his staff were coming to receive the surrender some Spaniards mistakenly opened fire. The enraged French hurled themselves on the Spanish infantry, killing more than half and capturing the rest. The Battle of Rocroi marked the decline of Spanish military power.

 

The Battle of Rocroi (1643), the symbolic end ...

The Battle of Rocroi (1643), the symbolic end of Spain’s grandeur; the slow decline sets in. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In 1780, a mysterious darkness enveloped much of New England and part of Canada in the early afternoon.

 

Napoleonic Wars:    In 1802, Napoleon created the Legion of Honor, the premier order of the French republic.

 

French Legion of Honor Medal

French Legion of Honor Medal (Photo credit: Pen Waggener)

In 1890, Ho Chi Minh—future founder of the Indochina Communist Party (1930) and its successor, the Viet Minh (1941), and president (1945–69) of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam)—was born in Hoang Tru, Vietnam, French Indochina.

 

Ho Chi Minh statue in front of the City Hall o...

Ho Chi Minh statue in front of the City Hall of Ho Chi Minh City. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Regards, Roger Mickelson
Source material includes Associated Press International and Encyclopædia Britannica.
All warfare is based on deception.”              Sun TzuThe Art of War

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Marita Noon: Environmental Shakedown through bastardized application of science, policy & education

 

Greetings!

This week’s column, Environmental Shakedown through bastardized application of science (attached and pasted-in-below), policy and education, is really an exposé on the Center for Biological Diversity. When I was at 700ish words, I wondered how I’d get to 1000ish. But then, I started talking to the authors of the various CBD pieces on the internet. Wow! It is amazing that one group can be so hated by such a wide variety of differing interest groups. Environmental Shakedown through bastardized application of science ended up long.  Sorry.  L

What I discovered in writing Environmental Shakedown through bastardized application of science is that there is not one complete CBD exposé out there—but there surely is enough material for one. I’d really like to write a full 5000+ version like I did for Mora County and like I did for Abengoa—though doing so would likely invite a lawsuit threat (CBD loves to threaten lawsuits). Environmental Shakedown through bastardized application of science is halfway there, but there is so much more I could write on CBD and its executive director Kieran Suckling.

One of the sources I interviewed just sent me this after reviewing the final draft: “You nailed this one.  You use words well.  Thanks. As you say, reasonable people can disagree on energy issues and still be cordial and even friends.  I know I would love to have you for a neighbor and argue with you, but it would always be friendly and with good humor.  How interesting that an energy advocate like you and a wildlifer like me (who opposes some energy development–certainly not all) can be on exactly the same page when it comes to radical enviros such as CBD.”

Marita82313

Marita Noon

Executive Director, Energy Makes America Great, inc.

PO Box 52103, Albuquerque, NM 87181

505.239.8998

Commentary by Marita Noon

Executive Director, Energy Makes America Great Inc.

Contact: 505.239.8998, marita@responsiblenergy.org

Words: 2148

Environmental Shakedown through bastardized application of science, policy and education

Over a three-year period, 2009-2012, Department of Justice data shows American taxpayers footed the bill for more than $53 million in so-called environmental groups’ legal fees—and the actual number could be much higher. The real motivation behind the Endangered Species Act (ESA) litigation, perhaps, could have more to do with vengeance and penance than with a real desire to protect flora and fauna.

On May 7, I spoke at the Four Corners Oil and Gas Conference in Farmington, New Mexico. During the two-day event, I sat in on many of the other sessions and had conversations with dozens of attendees. I left the event with the distinct impression that the current implementation of the ESA is a major impediment to the economic growth, tax revenue, and job creation that comes with oil-and-gas development. I have written on ESA issues many times, most recently I wrote about the lesser prairie chicken’s proposed “threatened” listing (which the Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS] listed on March 27) and the Oklahoma Attorney General’s lawsuit against the federal government over the “sue and settle” tactics of FWS and the Department of the Interior.

While at the conference, I received an email announcing that FWS has asked a federal court for a six-month delay in making a final determination on whether to list the Gunnison sage grouse as an endangered species—moving the decision past the November elections. Up for re-election, Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) “cheered” the extension request. The E & E report states: Colorado elected leaders “fear the listing could have significant economic impacts.”

Kent Holsinger, a Colorado attorney specializing in lands, wildlife and water, posited: “Senator Udall is among those lauding the move—perhaps because a listing decision would affect his fate in the U.S. Senate. Gunnison sage grouse populations are stable, if not on the increase. In addition, myriad state, local and private conservation efforts have been put into place over the last decade. Those efforts, and the Gunnison sage grouse, are at risk if the FWS pursues listing.”

The report continues: “WildEarth Guardians is not opposing the latest extension after Fish and Wildlife agreed to some extensive new mitigation measures that will be made in the interim, including increasing buffer zones around sage grouse breeding grounds, called leks, and deferring coal, oil and gas leasing, said Erik Molvar, a wildlife biologist with WildEarth Guardians.” It goes on to say: “But the Center for Biological Diversity, which is a party to the settlement agreements with WildEarth Guardians, said the latest extension is a bad move for the grouse, which it says has needed ESA protections for years.”

Two important items to notice in the Gunnison sage grouse story. One, the power the environmental groups wield. Two, part of appeasing the environmental groups involves “deferring coal, oil and gas leasing.”

It is widely known that these groups despise fossil fuels. The Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) brags about its use of lawsuits to block development—but it is not just oil and gas they block, it is virtually all human activity.

In researching for this week’s column, I have talked to people from a variety of industry and conservation efforts. The conversations started because I read something they’d written about CBD. Whether I was talking to someone interested in protecting big horn sheep, a fishing enthusiast, or an attorney representing ranching or extractive industries, CBD seems to be a thorn in their side. All made comments similar to what Amos Eno, who has been involved in conservation for more than forty years, told me: “CBD doesn’t care about the critters. They are creating a listing pipeline and then making money off of it.” Environmental writer Ted Williams, in a piece on wolves, called CBD: “perennial plaintiffs.”

New Mexico rancher Stephen Wilmeth directed me to a CBD profile he’d written. In it he addressed how the CBD’s efforts targeted livestock grazing and sought “the removal of cattle from hundreds of miles of streams.” Wilmeth states: “CBD has elevated sue and settle tactics, injunctions, new species listings, and bad press surrounding legal action to a modern art form. Consent decrees more often than not result in closed door sessions with concessions or demands made on agency policy formulation.”

In a posting on the Society for Bighorn Sheep website titled: Legal tactics directly from the Center for Biological Diversity, board member Gary Thomas states: “The Center ranks people second. By their accounting, all human endeavors, agriculture, clean water, energy, development, recreation, materials extraction, and all human access to any space, are subordinate to the habitat requirements of all the world’s obscure animals and plants. But these selfish people don’t care about any person, plant, or animal. The Center collects obscure and unstudied species for a single purpose, specifically for use in their own genre of lawsuits. They measure their successes not by quality of life for man nor beast, but by counting wins in court like notches in the handle of a gun.”

You’d expect someone like me, an energy advocate, to dis the CBD—and I have (CBD is not too fond of me)—but how’d it get such a broad-based collection of negativity from within the environmental community?

Ted Williams told me: “environmentalists who are paying attention are not happy with CBD.” He has written the most comprehensive exposé on CBD that can be found—for which he was threatened with a lawsuit. Without Williams’ work, one has to resort to bits and pieces off the internet to put together CBD’s modus operandi—but there is plenty to choose from!

One of the most interesting ones to catch my eye was a part of the post on SheepSociety.com. There, Thomas points out the fact that the three founders of CBD are ex-forest service workers. He states: “To donors, their motives appear altruistic. To the informed, they look more like a 20-year quest for revenge for their firing.”

I am fairly well acquainted with CBD, but Thomas’ accusation was new to me—though it fit what I knew. (One of the very first pieces I ever wrote, when I originally got into this work seven plus years ago, was on the one and only legal victory ever won against CBD. Arizona rancher Jim Chilton won a defamation suit against CBD with a $600,000 dollar settlement. Nearly everyone I talked to as a part of my research for this story mentioned Chilton’s name with reverence.

I dug around and found an interesting story from Backpacker Magazine that gave credence to Thomas’ claim. The February 2003 issue features a multi-page profile on Kieran Suckling, co-founder and executive director. Addressing the three founders, who were working for the Forest Service, Backpacker reports: “All three of them were frustrated by their agencies’ inaction.” The story goes on to explain how the threesome “hatched a plan” to petition the Forest Service and force it to list the spotted owl.

Then, I found a 2009 profile on Suckling in High Country News (HCN). It quotes Suckling describing how the roots of his full-time activism started while working for the Forest Service doing spotted owl surveys: “We had signed contracts saying we wouldn’t divulge owl locations, but we went the next day to the Silver City Daily Press, with a map that told our story. We were fired within seconds. That was the start of us becoming full-time activists.”

These snippets help explain Suckling’s animosity toward the Forest Service and other government agencies. CBD is gleeful over its results. It has sued government agencies hundreds of times and has won the majority of the cases—though many never go to court and are settled in a backroom deal (hence the term: “sue and settle”). Thomas writes: “They are extremely proud to report that single-handedly they deplete the U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s entire annual budget, approximately $5 million, for endangered species listings year after year by forcing them to use their limited funds defending lawsuits instead of their intended purpose.”

The HCN piece describes Suckling’s approach to getting what he wants—which he explains in the New Yorker, as “a new order in which plants and animals are part of the polity”: “The Forest Service needs our agreement to get back to work, and we are in the position of being able to powerfully negotiate the terms of releasing the injunction. … They [federal employees] feel like their careers are being mocked and destroyed—and they are. So they become much more willing to play by our rules and at least get something done. Psychological warfare is a very under-appreciated aspect of environmental campaigning.”

“In CBD speak,” adds Wilmeth, “the suggestion of playing by the rules equates to its rules of manipulating positive outcomes for its mission.”

Putting the pieces together, it does appear, as Thomas asserts, that Suckling is on a 20+ year “quest for revenge” for being fired—vengeance that American taxpayers are funding.

Suckling is an interesting character. The Backpacker story cites his ex-wife, who said the following: “He’s not tethered on a daily basis to the same things you and I are tethered to.”

Tierra Curry is another name that comes up frequently in CBD coverage. CBD’s staff section of the website lists her as “senior scientist” and says she “focuses on the listing and recovery of endangered species.” As Warner Todd Huston reports: “Curry has an odd profile for an activist. She once claimed to have enjoyed dynamiting creek beds in rural Kentucky and taking perverse pleasure at sending fish and aquatic animals flying onto dry land and certain death. Now Curry spends her time filing petitions to ‘save’ some of the same animals she once enjoyed killing.”

Perhaps Curry’s frenetic listing efforts are her way of doing penance for her childhood penchant of killing critters.

The role vengeance and penance may play in CBD’s shakedown of the American public is just a hypothesis based on facts. But the dollars paid out are very real.

In an April 8, 2014 hearing before the House Committee on Natural Resources, fifth-generation rancher and attorney specializing in environmental litigation, Karen Budd-Falen talked about the need for ESA reform, as four different House bills propose: “Public information regarding payment of attorney’s fees for ESA litigation is equally difficult to access.” Addressing HR 4316—which requires a report on attorney’s fees and costs for ESA related litigation—she says: “It should not be a radical notion for the public to know how much is being paid by the federal government and to whom the check is written.” As she reports in her testimony, Budd-Falen’s staff did an analysis of the 276-page spreadsheet run released by the Department of Justice (DOJ) listing litigation summaries in cases defended by the Environment and Natural Resources Division, Wildlife Section. She explains: “The spreadsheets are titled ‘Endangered Species Defensive Cases Active at some point during FY09-FY12 (through April 2012).’ Although the DOJ release itself contained no analysis, my legal staff calculated the following statistics.” Budd-Falen then shows how she came up with the nearly $53 million figure of taxpayer money paid out over an approximate three-year period. However, she then shows how her own Freedom of Information Act requests have proven “that the DOJ does not keep an accurate account of the cases it defends”—making the actual dollar figure much higher.

Budd-Falen has stated: “We believe when the curtain is raised we’ll be talking about radical environmental groups bilking the taxpayer for hundreds of millions of dollars, allegedly for ‘reimbursement for attorney fees.’”

Budd-Falen’s research shows that for groups like CBD—who sue on process not on substance—it really is about the money.

Eno believes that for the CBD, it isn’t about the critters: “CBD endangers the endangered species program on multiple fronts. First, their petitions and listing suits use up significant financial and personnel resources of both Office of Endangered Species and solicitors office in DOI. This means less funding and personnel devoted to species recovery. Second, CBD suits antagonize and jeopardize recovery programs of cooperating federal land management agencies, particularly USFS and BLM. Third, their suits have hampered forest and grassland management thereby inviting forest fires which endanger both human and wildlife (sage grouse) communities throughout the west. Fourth, CBD suits antagonize, alienate and create financial hardship for affected private land owners, thereby reducing both public support and initiatives and active assistance for listed species recovery.”

Despite numerous attempts, the ESA has not had any major revisions in more than 25 years. The Wall Street Journal states: “The ESA’s mixed record on wildlife restoration and its impact on business have made the law vulnerable to critics.” Groups like CBD have twisted the intent of the law. Reform is now essential—not just to save taxpayer dollars, but to put the focus back on actually saving the species rather than, as Wilmeth calls it: “the bastardized application of science, policy and education.”

The author of Energy Freedom, Marita Noon serves as the executive director for Energy Makes America Great Inc. and the companion educational organization, the Citizens’ Alliance for Responsible Energy (CARE). Together they work to educate the public and influence policy makers regarding energy, its role in freedom, and the American way of life. Combining energy, news, politics, and, the environment through public events, speaking engagements, and media, the organizations’ combined efforts serve as America’s voice for energy.

 

 

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Will There Be A M”E”SD?

Editor: Mr. Ueckert is a resident of Edgewood interested in education in the community.  We appreciate his desire to express his opinions on the important issues facing the Moriarty-Edgewood School District (MESD)

The Future of “E” in MESD

By Jerry Ueckert

Who can say what will happen should MESD carry through and shutter Edgewood Elementary? Personally, I would like to see Moriarty and Edgewood grow together in a mutually beneficial relationship, but MESD seems bent on biting the hand that feeds it.

The Great Depression couldn’t kill Edgewood’s school or community spirit. The old Edgewood Schoolhouse was built as part of Roosevelt’s Works Projects Administration and community members joined together to construct the school from indigenous materials on land donated by the Bassett family. That school served generations of Edgewood families from 1938 to 1960, but after consolidation into the Moriarty District, the Edgewood school was shuttered and the community suffered a near death. By the late ‘60s, Edgewood had only an RV park, Paula Donner’s Realty, and the Horn gas station on its main street to serve as a reminder of its former days.

Once I-40 opened, Edgewood saw the addition of businesses on the four corners of the interchange, which brought new families and construction into the community. Within just a few years, Edgewood experienced a surge in population and Moriarty was too small to handle the load. A new Edgewood Elementary had to be constructed and only a few years later, an annex had to be built to keep up with the area’s growth.

Having their own school once again was cause for celebration. A revitalization of creative energy followed. Many artists began calling Edgewood home. New businesses were established and a new vision of Edgewood’s future rose from the dust.

Now it seems as if we’ve come full circle and are threatened once again with losing our elementary school. But rather than being prompted by declining enrollment or poor performance, the closure of Edgewood Elementary is based solely on finances. Evidence supporting the stated concerns of shuttering by Edgewood’s Town Council and Chamber of Commerce abound.

Elaine Simon, author of a project-based education course, “Schools and Community Development,” states, “Schools are often the one institution still surviving in low-income neighborhoods, and they serve as a point of pride and community for families. When a neighborhood loses its schools, it also loses an institution that builds relationships among local residents and binds generations, while it serves local children. Losing schools makes it all the more likely that these neighborhoods will deteriorate further.”

The Atlanta Journal – Constitution reported in 2010, “DeKalb County school officials decided Forrest Hills Elementary was too small to remain open, and neighbors say its closure has changed their community in palpable ways. Formerly active residents and many young parents have moved away. Community gatherings have grown smaller. The recession makes the impact on property values hard to determine, but many residents believe they’ve been damaged.”

Richard Layman, a Washington, DC urban/commercial district revitalization and transportation/mobility advocate, says, “Schools are fundamental anchors which build and maintain quality neighborhoods and communities. Therefore to maintain communities we need to maintain the schools located within them.”

Andy Smarick, a charter school advocate and author of “The Urban School System of the Future: Applying Principles and Lessons of Chartering”, says that closing neighborhood schools can have negative and unintended consequences, stating, “Even if it’s low-performing, at least it’s a stable institution and an indication that the government has at least some investment in that neighborhood.”

So, do we want a school district unwilling to invest in the welfare and future of the community? Faced with these questions, Edgewood residents have legitimate reasons for concern that have not been addressed by MESD. But having faced these questions before, they have proven their willingness and ability to rebuild their future, literally out of the very dirt beneath their feet.

How does that benefit MESD? The short answer is: it doesn’t.

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Paul Gessing’s, “Errors of Enchantment.”

Mr. Gessing previously granted permission for our use of his material from Errors of Enchantment and his Rio Grande Foundation. Needless to say we are are tremendously grateful for his generosity.

Please visit Rio Grande Foundation and Errors of Enchantment frequently. Now enjoy the article below and any related articles found through the links after Mr. Gessing’s post.

Most Principals and Teachers DO work hard for schools, but that doesn’t ensure success

“Recently, a representative of the New Mexico Association of Secondary School Principals wrote an opinion piece in the Albuquerque Journal defending his profession.

The most interesting part of the article comes toward the end where the author makes a clear grammatical error when he states, “Let’s not listen anymore to rhetoric that is being promoted by special interest groups that want us to believe that are schools are failing.” (emphasis added to the faulty wording which should be “our). I’ve certainly mis-typed and even mis-spelled words in my writing before, but having such a blatant error in an article written on behalf of school principals is not comforting.

More important is the sentence itself. “Special interests” want us to believe that schools are failing. I’m sure that as an educator, one gets tired of hearing about the failures of the system they are a part of, but that’s the issue, the system. As Capitol Report New Mexico reported just this week, New Mexico spends 20th most per pupil in the nation, but has some of the worst results when it comes to student achievement. Clearly something is failing.

And, yes, poverty is higher here and we have more minority students than most states, but Louisiana which has many of the same problems as New Mexicoincluding poor performance — has adopted the most robust school choice in the nation and an astonishing 91 percent of parents approve. If New Mexico’s principals really cared about their “customers” and wanted to improve the failing system they are a part of, wouldn’t they consider emulating Louisiana?”

English: Seal of New Mexico

English: Seal of New Mexico (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

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