Robert Bennett: Utah wilderness plan a model for U.S.

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  • Joane Pappas White Price, Utah
    June 8, 2011 2:14 p.m.

    As a grazing permittee in the Mexican Mountain wilderness study area in the San Rafael, I would point out that 30+ years of wilderness management in the WSA has inflicted more damage upon the land than all of the prior uses combined from the days of the Spanish Trail to the date of the WSA designation in the late 1970's. Literally, nothing has been preserved or protected, much less studied. The entire WSA is, and always was, a farce. The wildlife that existed before 1980 is gone because the ponds and reservoirs created by the homesteaders cannot be maintained. The beautiful canyon Overlooks are known to only a few people because most of you cannot get to them anymore. The roads are still intact behind the wilderness barricades,(roads which should have precluded wilderness designation)but you cannot use them. The SUWA decided you cannot be trusted to use OHVs without tearing up the place. There is no oil, gas, tar sands and very little uranium left in the San Rafael,therefore protection from development is a red herring argument. The WSA accomplished what??? Nothing -- except excluding our people from responsibly using our public lands.

  • bodgerdlue Kearns, UT
    June 8, 2011 6:15 a.m.


    Article IV Section 3 Paragraph 2 of the Constitution deals with territories AND other properties belonging to the United States. The Utah Enabling Act in no way states that the Federal Government would "sell" land to Utah, and instead sets up a provision by which the State would be granted certain Federal lands for school trust and to erect it own public buildings.

    Then there is the small fact that even the State in its own Constitution recognized the right of the Federal Government to all unappropriated public lands.

    I'm sorry Utah_1 but your misreading of the Constitution does not change what has been accepted as fact since our nations founding.

  • Utah_1 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2011 6:53 p.m.

    re: bodgerdlue,
    Perhaps you should read again what I wrote.

    1. There is nothing in the US Constitution that gives the federal government the ability to "own" large amounts of lands within a state.

    Article IV Section 3 Paragraph 2 deals with Territories. Utah has been a state for a very long time, and even under the unconstitutional provisions of the Utah Enabling Act, congress promised to sell the land in question, which they stopped doing officially in 1976. They are in violation with that agreement, and have been for over 30 years.

    2. Under Art 1, 8, 17, the feds could not own land in a state, with very specific exceptions. Using Art. 4, sect 3, 2, as a temporary method of taking land from a territory and transferring it to the state or private owners could be argued, if the intent was to do that. The Federal Government has shown and even formally stated that that isn't the intention, and so under Art. 1, 8, 17 and even under the Utah Enabling Act, they are in violation of any claim on the land of Utah.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 7, 2011 3:05 p.m.

    Re: ". . . I'm not rich, elite or from back east."

    Have you turned over 78% of your property to the Feds?

    If not, you agree with me.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    June 7, 2011 1:21 p.m.

    Procura said: This tired, discredited eco-socialist view of "preservation" places the burden entirely on us, rather than the rich elites demanding it.

    and it's Conservation a word conservatives are uncomfortable with?

    No your wrong as usual.
    It places the burden on or children and theirs, and I'm not rich, elite or from back east.

    Your leave only scorched earth approach is about as selfish as most of your posts.
    We live in a society, not a frontier with neighbors 50 miles away although I noticed you do live in Tooele.

    and considering Several eastern states could fit into Utah perhaps the answer is to split Utah into eastern size states.

    and how could we not love mining in Utah when most get to view that mtn they turned inside out and you can see from space.

    Silly people who hate the earth, Utah and there possible decendents.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 7, 2011 9:31 a.m.

    Re: "So let's keep Utah as it is."

    First off -- why not make New York and Massachusetts go back to what they were? Why not California or Texas? How about returning the East Bench to the way it was, displacing liberal elites?

    This tired, discredited eco-socialist view of "preservation" places the burden entirely on us, rather than the rich elites demanding it.

    If they are genuinely concerned about the environment, why not volunteer 78% of THEIR home states?

    Secondly -- even the term "keeping Utah the way it is" is liberal newspeak for declaring it off-limits to agriculture, mining, energy, and even visible "green" resource development, like wind and geothermal projects.

    Tree huggers don't want Utah the way it is. Rather, they are attempting to force us into some radical new mold, where "pristine" is defined in terms defining humans as an invasive species, who must be culled and controlled by out-of-state elites, since local populations are too stupid to be trusted with determining what's best for those elites.

    That's not keeping it the way it is.

  • bodgerdlue Kearns, UT
    June 7, 2011 6:10 a.m.


    Perhaps you should try reading the entire US Constitution. If you did, perhaps you would realize that Article IV Section 3 Paragraph 2 states:

    "The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State."

    Also if you read the Utah State Constitution you might get this nugget from Article 3 section 2:

    "The people inhabiting this State do affirm and declare that they forever disclaim all right and title to the unappropriated public lands lying within the boundaries hereof, and to all lands lying within said limits owned or held by any Indian or Indian tribes, and that until the title thereto shall have been extinguished by the United States, the same shall be and remain subject to the disposition of the United States"

    We will not find any solutions to land use issues until this false notion that the Federal Government has no jurisdiction over Federal Lands ends.

  • JoeBlow Miami Area, Fl
    June 6, 2011 7:24 p.m.

    This exchange of ideas bares repeating


    "Are you telling me that dialogue amongst the parties, compromise and negotiation is a good way to resolve challenges?"


    That line of thinking is "socialist" ..."designed to slowly ring down the curtain on democracy and civilization"

    Did I get the gist of that correct?

    Seriously? You cant make this stuff up.

  • rmwarnick Draper, UT
    June 6, 2011 1:13 p.m.

    Congress cannot create wilderness. Only Nature can. President Theodore Roosevelt once said about the Grand Canyon:

    "Leave it as it is. You can not improve on it. The ages have been at work on it, and man can only mar it. What you can do is to keep it for your children, your children's children, and for all who come after you, as one of the great sights which every American if he can travel at all should see."

    So let's keep Utah as it is. We must protect it from the corporations who want to strip mine our wilderness for tar sands and leave us with nothing.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    June 6, 2011 10:39 a.m.


    Okay, I'll call your bluff. You, then, are willing to force the federal government to transfer 38,000 employees from Utah along with the $3 Billion dollars per year they spend in Utah's economy? You are fine with closing Hill AFB, the state's largest employer? You are aware that Utah takes more from the federal government than they give, right? Trust me, the federal government needs Utah a whole lot less than Utah needs the federal government.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    June 6, 2011 9:33 a.m.

    The Washington County deal is a farce. A few acres set aside for "wilderness" surrounded by "anything goes." Bishop will never go for even that. Bennett is naive. Republicans have rejected him soundly and will not be satisfied until the whole state looks like Beck Street and is pumping $ into their pockets.

  • KDave Moab, UT
    June 6, 2011 8:42 a.m.

    I am sorry Mr Bennett but you and Jim were played for suckers by SUWA in the Washington Co. deal.

  • calou84523 Ferron, Utah
    June 6, 2011 8:22 a.m.

    The Utah Republican Party should adopt a in its platform a permanent plank and the state legislature should adopt a resolution asserting the sovereignty of the State of Utah and affirming that, as a sovereign state, it is the sole authority over the use of all the territory within its borders, except for those lands that the people and the legislature of the state of Utah voluntarily and expressly cede to the federal government, that the people and legislature of the state of Utah are the sole and only legitimate arbiters of all resources, natural or otherwise, above, on, and below its sovereign territory, and that the authority and control of federal departments, agencies, and bodies exercise over lands within the borders of the state of Utah is limited to those lands which the people and legislature of the state of Utah have voluntarily ceded to the federal government.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 6, 2011 8:00 a.m.

    @ procuradorfiscal, an outlook like that is not suited for a free and democratic society.

  • Utah_1 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 6, 2011 7:50 a.m.

    Under the US Constitution, Art. 1, Sec. 8, Clause 17, the Federal Government can not own land in Utah, unless it is for Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings, and it was purchased by the Consent of the Utah Legislature. Clearly the 2/3 of the land in Utah "claimed" by the Federal Government does not fit within this constitutional power.

    Congress, the President, the US Supreme Court do NOT have constitutional authority to own any land in Utah, and that the Utah Enabling Act, Sec 3, 4th paragraph and the Utah Constitution Article 2, section 2, should be declared void ab initio, which means "to be treated as invalid from the outset," based on US Constitution Art. 1, Sec. 8, Clause 17.

    Even if that Utah Enabling Act section be determined to be US Constitutional, the Federal Government promised in that agreement to sell the 2/3 of Utah, and not to keep it. They officially violated that agreement with FLIPMA in 1976, leaving Utah the 2/3 of its land.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 6, 2011 7:32 a.m.

    Re: "Are you telling me that dialogue amongst the parties, compromise and negotiation is a good way to resolve challenges?"

    Those terms are nothing more than liberal newspeak, applied by socialist incrementalists to their long-term agenda, designed to slowly ring down the curtain on democracy and civilization.

    Agreeing to negotiation and compromise with socialists is merely agreeing to death by a thousand cuts, rather than by immediate decapitation.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 6, 2011 7:03 a.m.

    Are you telling me that dialogue amongst the parties, compromise and negotiation is a good way to resolve challenges? Heaven forbid! Someone should tell that to the Republicans, including their sub-group, the tea party.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 6, 2011 5:05 a.m.

    Re: "We may yet see resolution of an issue that has torn the state apart for decades."

    I doubt it.

    That's because the tree huggers will never see the issue as "resolved" until the entire West is converted into a petting zoo for East Bench, Back East, and Left Coast liberal elites.

    This "model plan" is just another in a long series of incremental defeats handed to America, family agriculture, and Western freedom by politicians more concerned with being re-elected, than with doing what is right.

    Unfortunately, it won't be the last in the series, either. Tree hugger plans are already in the works to undo Salazar's strategic retreat.

    We haven't heard the end of this issue. Not by a long shot.