Comments about ‘Sparks fly on Capitol hill during BLM director's visit to Utah’

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Published: Friday, Jan. 14 2011 4:00 p.m. MST

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Where do eggs come from
Sandy, Ut

It is clear that a lot of people don't know where eggs come from.

Clearfield, UT


Nowhere in the constitution is there authority to create land preserves. Neither is there authority own lands within the borders of a state (excepting the second to last paragraph of article I, section 8.)

Bountiful, UT

It is sad that so many Americans are so ignorant of the Constitution of the United States. It is also sad that so many are ignorant of Marxist history and the lessons of its failure. And it is sad that so much of Utah's lands are off of the tax rolls, since property taxes educate our children.

It is so typical for environmentalists to place the welfare of a slug ahead of the welfare of the human race.

What would happen if each state were asked to preserve one acre of wilderness per capita of human population. States should have equal rights to their land, and citizens of one state should not have dominion over the lands of another state unless they own and pay taxes upon said land.

American Fork, UT

I enjoy public lands and have no desire to sell them off so that they are al privately held. I also have no desire to turn another acre of them into wilderness, parks or monuments.

I want them open for multiple uses that include all recreational uses and industrial uses. The philosophy that used land is ruined land is ridiculous in my opinion.

I will give the enviromental movement credit in that it has raised awareness of the proper uses of public lands but much like labor unions that raised awareness of labor conditions it has now decended into an self perpetuating, and money grubbing, joke.

I think awareness has been raised to the point most of us see the value in not simply strip mining every square inch of the state but of course most of us are still level headed enough to realize having dirt roads, access and multiple uses doesn't "ruin" things either.

Sadly the radicals on the left seem to be the ones that drive the agenda from their side.

Miss Piggie
SLC, Utah

@Recommendations: 4 dumprake:

"We should be going the other direction on this issue, and removing lands from federal control."

How is it that the federal government owns land in any state (except for national parks, of course)? It would seem only fair and correct that states would own the land within the borders of their respective states. Inquiring minds wanna know.

Orem Parent
Orem, UT

We the people are once again stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Have the feds take over our land as "wilderness" or leave it in the hands of our state legislators who will do everything they can to keep it all away from our kids and their schools.

We the people are going to lose.

Zona Zone
Mesa, AZ

A Republican is allowed to speak, and a Democrat storms out of the room. How can they even lecture us on civility when they refuse to listen to us?

Mr. Bean
SLC, Utah


"Every bit of land that's been protected has given much back to our culture."

What we need right now more than 'culture' is oil.

"I'd like to see the part of Marx you're referring to."

Try this: 'Economic and political theories of Karl Marx hold that capitalism will ultimately be superseded by communism and the government will own everything.'



"I really feel sorry for those of you that stand on the Constitution and have never read it or even understand its meaning."

I'd like to see where in the Constitution the government is permitted to own any land (except for the District of Columbia).

"If all Federal lands were released tomorrow who do you think would end up owning most of it IF NOT ALL???"

As it now stands, China has a fair chance of owning most if not all of federal lands anyway... since they hold most of our $14 trillon federal debt which is on the verge of defaulting... and which China could insist on taking in settlement.

Salt Lake City, UT

Kathleen Clarke, There is no certainty and we will see industry flee this state. The economy of the Uinta Basin has been flipped flat on its face, by the Department of the Interior and their decision to default on oil leases.

Pre Obama Administration 400+ leases existed. After federal review 50+ were given a thumbs-up. Interim review, hundreds of trucks and drilling rigs sat idle. Post review and reassessment by petro companies, trucks and rigs disappeared overnight, reappeared in states like North Dakota and Montana.

The DI killed thousands of jobs in the Uinta Basin, sending businesses reeling and ended flowing tax revenues and cash injections, from the petroleum industry into our State, now being absorbed by states other than Utah.

Perhaps a handful of the 400+ granted leases should be recalled, but the 87% federal hack-job on those grants adversely affected the balance sheet of most businesses and every individual residing in the Uinta Basin.

Add carte blanche federal wild land grabbing to the federal recant on oil leases and the Uinta Basin was hit with a fed-nuclear economic bomb. Perhaps the Uinta Basin could be appropriately renamed the Uinta Basin Federal Test Range.

80 year old woman
Wenatchee, Wa

Utah, I live in the state of Washington, and believe me I sincerely your taking a stand to support property rights----For those of you old enough to remember, about 20 years ago during the Clinton-Gore administration----we had Bruce Babbitt incuring the "War on the West!" Now it is happening again. Each and every state in the United States needs to take a stand and stand up against federal government takeovers (healthcare or land) Please read the Constitution and discover that a federation of states was created----not a dictatorship from Washington, D.C.

Demo Dave
Holladay, UT

All you anti-enviros may one day thank the environmental community for saving some of the Earth's most beautiful places from the wilderness marauders and the oil baron hucksters who will have claimed it, raped it, and handed it back to you with all of its intrinsic value and beauty destroyed. Have you ever seen a strip mine, hilltop coal removal, or a tar sands or oil shale project? Is that what you want Utah to look like? Keep voting for Gary Herbert and that's exactly what you'll get.

Grandma Char
Kaysville, UT

How much more of Utah's land should the feds have? I believe we cannot afford to give them anymore. I wonder if the environmentalists and liberals know exactly who is calling the shots in this country and why. My guess is you do not.

Do some research and see what it is George Soros wants...and how often he has the ear of the President. It might help you if you are humble enough to learn.

Salt Lake City, UT

@ Demo Dave; to label all people who promote responsible economic development and recreation as 'anti-enviros' is at best disingenuous. They're not proposing ATV trails over and under the Delicate Arch or off shore drilling in the Utah Lake Wetland Preserve.

Government has always been long on legislation and short on oversight! Utah can prosper with responsible use of OUR Utah lands by ensuring that reclamation and restoration is the end game of economic use.

Land preservation and use, or exploitation as you prefer, can coexist and oversight is the key. Many 'anti-enviros,' as you label them, reject the notion that our most beautiful sites would be diminished. Perhaps they simply do not eat as many granola bars as you do?

Somewhere in Utah, UT

to Miss Piggie | 11:11 a.m. Jan. 15, 2011

Here's how it works.

Prior to statehood, the federal government is the owner of all of the land located within the state-to-be (with the exception of tribal lands). Over time the federal government will convey title to some of the land to individuals, but generally will retain ownership of the majority of it. When the state becomes a state, the federal government will convey title to parts (generally over 50%) of the land to the state government, but retains title to some of the land (land in which it believes it has an interest necessary to preserve for itself). As with any other real estate transactions, ownership remains vested in the original entity (the federal government) until that entity conveys out its interest.

The BLM manages the land in Utah owned by the federal government. Like it or not, the BLM has every right to manage the land in Utah owned by the federal government. This isn't an issue of control, it's an issue of ownership.

Salt Lake City, UT

Once land has been 'used', there is absolutely no guarantee that it will be possible to return it to its natural state. Utah is lucky enough to have some of the best scenery in the country, including the redrock in the south, and the Uintas in the north. The Uintas are one of the few places in the country where one can spend a week backpacking, and during that week only see two roads - the road to the trailhead at the beginning of the trek, and the road to the trailhead at the end of the trek. If it takes federal regulation to preserve the land Utah is lucky enough to have, why resist? Opening land to public, recreational use is fun, but even if 99% of the users are responsible and stay on the trails, the other 1% can and will ruin it for the 99%. An example of this is when some yahoo decides to run a vehicle up the side of a mountain, causing a lot of erosion and defacing the mountain, rather than staying on the trail where the vehicle should be. And don't get me started on industrial destruction of the land.

SLC, Utah

@Demo Dave:

"All you anti-enviros may one day thank the environmental community for saving some of the Earth's most beautiful places from the wilderness marauders and the oil baron hucksters..."

Thank you for your concerns. I like it when I'm able to go to the North Slope and view millions of square miles the tundra... which I've done... ZERO times.

If you are so concerned about the environment, you need to park your car and never drive it again. And while you're at it, turn the heat in your house down to... zero. If/when you do that, I will know you're serious.

Cedar City, UT

Much of the federal land across Utah and the West where my parents and grandparents took me hiking, camping, fishing, and hunting back in the '50s and '60s was accessible by car. Today, most of those old roads are still in excellent condition -- good enough for a Lincoln Town Car. But, thanks to the radicals that infest the BLM, National Forest Service, Sierra Club, SUWA, etc., those roads have been barricaded against all motor vehicle travel since the Clinton-Gore days. Now that I'm a disabled veteran in my 60s, I can no longer take my grandchildren on those memorable roads. Now, the BLM plans to remove even more public land from full public access. Itll be accessible only to healthy young adults. That is outrageous and unacceptable. The public land belongs to the people not the BLM, National Forest Service, and especially not to the Sierra Club, SUWA, etc. The BLM and the National Forest service have a duty to manage federal land for all the people not lock it up for a special few. Utah, wake up!

SLC, Utah

@Furry1993 1:27 p.m.:

Where is what you posted, covered in the Constitution? If you recall reading the US Constitution, you will remember that the powers of the federal government are specific, listed, and limited. All other powers are given to the states and the people. I see nothing in there that allows the fed to acquire land (except for Post Offices and post roads, and for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dock-yards, and other needful buildings).

Thirteen Original States were organized and in existence when the Constitution was written and signed. Those states should own all the land within each state (except that which was owned by private parties in those states and as allowed for above). None of the property should have reverted to the federal government in those states. This same procedure should apply to all states organized after that. Anything else is in violation of the Constitution, it would seem.

PS: Why were tribal lands excluded?

Tremonton, UT

I was amused to see Pat Shea get huffy and leave the meeting because Jim Hansen was invited to speak. Typical liberals who are tolerant only of those who hold their own liberal viewpoints! Jim Hansen had just as much basis to be there as Pat Shea... in fact even more so. Jim Hansen was expert on public lands for 22 years as Congressional chairman of public lands committee. Pat Shea was only BLM director under CLinton for about a year if I'm not mistaken. Before that time, Pat didn't have much basis in public lands policy at all.

Holladay, UT

Less then 20% of the BLM land in Carbon and Emery counties is closed to OHV use. Clearly much more protection is necessary to come close to the "balanced use" that the trail machine and corporate use groups speak about. OHV use is mutually exclusive to all other uses of the land. Remember wilderness is beneficial, even if you never set foot on the land.

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