portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article reposts oregon & cascadia

forest defense | government selection 2004

Kerry Proposes $100 Million For New Forest Corps

Kerry vows to strip subsidies from timber industry in favor of restoration forestry.
Kerry proposes $100 million for new forest corps

By The Associated Press

VERDI, Nev. — Democrat John Kerry would cut $100 million in annual government subsidies to the timber industry to pay for a new Forest Restoration Corps that would invest in the long-term health of national forests, his campaign said Tuesday.

Shifting spending from commercial logging operations on federal lands would allow for creation of new jobs while restoring forests, streams and rangelands that have been mismanaged or severely damaged by wildfires, campaign aides told The Associated Press.

The new program reminiscent of the Civilian Conservation Corps President Franklin D. Roosevelt established during the Great Depression is one of the highlights in a three-page plan, "John Kerry's Forest Plan: Putting Communities First."

A retired Forest Service official, local Democrats and union firefighters who work for the Nevada Division of Forestry joined campaign officials in unveiling the plan Tuesday at Verdi near the site of a wildfire that burned 1,200 acres on the western edge of Reno two weeks ago along the Nevada-California line.

Among other things, a Kerry administration would pledge to annually budget to cover all federal firefighting costs, make necessary additions to aerial firefighting fleets and focus reduction of fuels in overstocked forests on those areas posing the most immediate threats to communities.

Spokespersons for the Forest Service and its parent Agriculture Department in Washington referred calls to the Bush-Cheney campaign, which dismissed the proposal as campaign politics aimed at building support among environmentalists while ignoring concerns of mainstream Westerners.

main stream westerners? 18.Jul.2004 15:36


That may in fact be an oxymoron --- then again I would have thought mainstream westerners were environmentalists... no?

Clinton made pro-environment promises he didn't keep, too 18.Jul.2004 16:11


And despite a lot of pro-environment rhetoric from the administration, big business has had little to fear in the area of environmental regulation. "We just don't have unlimited resources to enforce all these measures and that can create a backlash [from corporations]," said Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Carol Browner. "So we need to be realistic." For the Clinton-Gore administration, "being realistic" meant sacrificing environmental protection at the first hint of any corporate objection. After fierce industry lobbying, the administration preserved sweetheart deals allowing the mining industry to pillage federal lands and the timber industry to clear-cut old-growth forests. In 1995 it opened some federal land holdings to oil drilling-a decision that enriched Occidental Petroleum and the vice president, an Occidental stockholder. Browner even allowed sugar growers and land developers-including a few Clinton-Gore campaign contributors-to dump polluted water into the Florida Everglades. The Clinton-Gore administration signed the 1997 Kyoto Agreement, a worldwide treaty aimed to limit global warming. But it has not even tried to win treaty ratification in the U.S. Senate. *

excerpted from Lance Selfa's

* For an exposé of the Clinton-Gore first-term environmental record, see Alexander Cockburn and Ken Silverstein, Washington Babylon (New York: Verso, 1996), pp. 187—247. Browner's quote is from p. 235.

Kerry 18.Jul.2004 16:56


It would appear as though the environmental record of John Kerry is considerably better than George Bush's and this new position he has taken concerning forest health and ending welfare for the timber industry is encouraging. It appears there are only two viable candidates in the november election, Kerry and Bush and I am sure not going to take a chance on Bush.

Gringo Stars: While everyone knows Clinton was a failure with regards to environmental policy (ex: Salvage Rider)to infer Kerry will replicate Clinton's mistakes as a given might be a mistake. Kerry might be worse than Clinton, he might be a goodly sight better. But we know what Bush is.

Kerry will likely step on the toes of environmentalists and cause pain, whereas Bush straight out stabbed us in the gut. The best viable strategy seems to me to rid this country of the cancerous Bush and then rebuild from there.

to give credit where it's due.... 18.Jul.2004 18:19

in vancouver

any bill with the salvage rider, sponsored by former washington senator slade gorton, was shot down in congress until werhauser's butter boy slade tacked it onto the appropriations bill that allocated relief for the victims for the oklahoma city bombing. anyone voting that one down would have just handed over thier re-election on that one. but yeah, the salvage rider sucks big time.

as for the 1994 forest plan, it had some nasty holes you could drive a logging truck through, but it was better than what was going on under the gipper.

at least with kerry, there is a chance he might listen to people. bush just listens to his rich cronies and that voice in his head that says it's gawd....

Kerry vs. Clinton 18.Jul.2004 18:59


There is no evidence whatsoever that Kerry will "listen to the people." he will listen to the corporations, who have bakrolled him. Kerry has gotten more corporate donations than any other serving Senator. The man is an intellectual whore. Yes, we know what Bush is. We also know what Kerry is. At least Clinton spewed liberal rhetoric before selling out. Meanwhile, Kerry promises to send MORE troops to Iraq than Bush does. All Kerry listens to is his rich cronies:

Kerry's assurance to high rollers at a $25,000-a-plate breakfast fundraiser at the posh "21" Club in Manhattan to "fear not," because "I am not a redistribution Democrat... who wants to go back and make the mistakes of the Democratic Party of 20, 25 years ago," stands as the signature messages of his campaign to America's rich. I'm one of you, he is telling them. I will continue to cut social spending and transfer wealth from poor to rich. The profits that you have amassed at the expense of workers over the past two decades will be safe in my administration.

More 18.Jul.2004 20:00


Well on this particular issue he obviously has been listening to the people. Sure he is a long-time scumbag senator,that is obvious, but who do you trust more-a Skull and Bones guy who was an anti-war protester or a Skull and Bones man who clearly is intent on providing the war industry with immense profits. What do you propose we do in november Gringo, demand anarchy now and count on Bush to bring on the revolution? Been there, done that sorry.

There is possibly some glimmer of hope in an administration change, in a cabinet change. Let's not let Bush have another chance at a gut stab again.

John Kerry is not my ideal candidate by any means but life is like that, you're not going to get exactly what you want sometimes. I can face that and try to make the best viable choice when necessary. I'll vote for Kerry in a heartbeat if it is that or another 4 years of Bush.

Kerry is no longer a war protestor, urges anti-war movement to "get over it" 18.Jul.2004 20:43


It might be unpleasant to recognize, but both democrats and republicans are horrible choices. besides, as the 2000 selection demonstrated, there is no longer democracy in the US. Voting will be overseen by European election observers since the US acts like a fledgling dictatorship.

There is no hope with Kerry. I realize you speak out of desperation, Anonymous, but voting is not the end-all of activism. Boycott, strike, direct actions, etc. are all that can be counted on.

I trust NEITHER choice. They are both ruling class puppets. Kerry is more pro-war than Bush. Look at the figures of the soldiers they both want to deploy. Kerry wants more full-time soldiers deployed than Bush does. So who do you want more? I want neither. Too bad the choice has already been made. Don't worry the scumbag you apparently choose to vote for will win. Most of the ruling class prefers Kerry's ability to put asleep the middle-class left with the absurd illusion that Kerry will somehow be better. Leftists will fall asleep waiting (and waiting and waiting and waiting) for Kerry to do something decent. He never has before, and when he did he recanted.

Some believe that having a Democrat in office will mean that at least there is someone who will to listen to our side. So far, Kerry has proven the opposite-the Left's support can be taken for granted. Ultimately, this means that our side ends up weaker, not stronger. In the run-up to elections, activists are always asked to fold up shop in order to not embarrass the Democrat. Once in office, activism again must be put on the backburner to "give the Democrat time." In the run-up to the April "March for Women's Lives" protest in Washington, D.C., liberal women's groups like the National Organization for Women (NOW) bragged that they had not organized a national protest in twelve years. During that time-under Democrat Clinton-abortion rights were chipped away, restriction by restriction and state by state, and no liberal women's organization called a protest.

Activists who attended the April demonstration got a good idea of what kind of stress groups like NOW and NARAL Pro-Choice America would be putting on grassroots activism-absolutely none. March organizers made sure that the event, which turned out a massive crowd of one million people, amounted to little more than a rally for John Kerry. If Kerry gets into office, how long will NOW give him time to defend access to abortion?

Likewise with the issue of gay marriage. A promising movement around it, with "mass marriages" and demonstrations, could be flourishing at this moment if not for the tremendous pressure from leading Democrats such as Barney Frank who have argued that now (i.e., during an election) isn't the time to protest.

But the biggest chill that the anybody but Bush atmosphere leading up to the November election is creating is around the question of the occupation of Iraq, where there is a tremendous gap between the intensity of crisis at the top and the lack of organized antiwar resistance from below.

Bush's popularity is plummeting as the torture scandal goes from bad to worse; and the occupation is in shambles. But rather than encouraging struggles for justice-opposition to the occupation in Iraq, for abortion rights, for workers' rights-the Democratic Party is discouraging them. When progressives are asked to hold their nose and vote for Kerry, they are being coerced not only into setting aside the issues they care about, but supporting a candidate who represents the opposite values-a candidate who is pro-war and pro-business to his core. In exchange for demobilization, we get somebody else's agenda. This is why we need to build an activist opposition to Washington's rotten policies-whether a Democrat or a Republican is making them.


LINE BY LINE... 18.Jul.2004 21:56

yo mama

...A decryption of post above...

(Can be a fun game. Do it with your kids!)

"vows" = makes hollow 'promise' - usually contradicts other "vows"
"invest" = gamble
"health" = profitability
"jobs" = in this case, probably - volunteer opportunities - and/or - new bureaucratic sinkhole
"restoring" = replanting with GM lodgepole pine monocrop farms
"mismanaged" = destroyed, decimated, pillaged, annihilated,....
"campaign aides" = lackeys, peg-boys
"communities" = special interest groups
"wildfire" = natural forest management
"fuels" = trees, indespensible ecosystem
"overstocked" = healthy, wild, unprofitable
"forest service" = industry lap-dog, traitor
"mainstream westerners" = suburban property owners, timber industry executives, good-old boys

Fill them in and read again! Fun for all!

Did I miss any?