Stuart Johnson, Deseret News
The state motto for Utah is "Industry." Hence, it is no surprise the state wants to bring a lawsuit against the federal government for control of some of America's most scenic heritage. Utah covets 22 million acres of public wildlands located within the state. The oil and gas industry is salivating.
Enter Idaho, whose state motto implies "Forever." The Idaho Legislature wants to perpetuate the ravaging of our national forests and rangelands by drafting legislation that mimics Utah's land grab. Idaho wants 15 million acres of federally-owned land located within the state. The timber and ranching industry is drooling.
Utah and Idaho are two peas in a pod. The return of the Sagebrush Rebellion is upon us. Indeed, America's heritage and public wildlands are under threat from Western states and the corporations they serve. If it were up to me, I'd charge Idaho Gov. Butch Otter and Utah Gov. Gary Herbert with treason.