Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Sportsmen for Walker? DNR reorg proves there is no such thing

Naturally, the weeks following the November election are showing us what voting Republican REALLY means. And I'm betting the rurals who voted to retain the GOP majorities in the State Legislature voted to have the Wisconsin DNR pass the buck on its duties in giving honest analysis to make sure innocent Wisconsinites aren't victimized by the actions of irresponsible businesses and individuals. Because that's what you're gonna get, as DNR Secretary Cathy ("Chamber of Commerce Mentality") Stepp revealed today.
Stepp said that in the past topics of research have been driven by requests from front-line employees, partners such as UW-Madison, or groups that give grants. Greater control of topics by top managers will ensure research matches the agency's highest priorities.

She said she will be able to withstand pressure from lawmakers if they attempt to influence the direction of science research in ways at odds with the DNR's priorities, but she added that elected officials properly will have the last say.
And if you have any doubt what that really means, take a look at what a puppetmaster for many of those elected officials has to say.
"From what we've seen we have been very supportive of the plan," Lucas Vebber, director of environmental and energy policy for Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce.
After all, who wants to hear inconvenient truths about climate change or contaminated well water when it might cost a few dollars in profits, right?

In other words, they will let Big Ag, frac sand miners, and Koch-like polluters decide what should and should not be allowed, and any warnings about the effects of such pollution on nearby homes and communities is going to be diminished, if not outright ignored. And when it comes to figuring out if industries and agribusinesses won't mess up other nearby areas, the Stepp/Walker DNR says "We'll punt and let the big guys write their own rules."
Allowing dairy businesses to hire consultants to write permits for feedlot designs and plans for spreading tens of millions of gallons of manure annually could be successful because there are sufficient numbers of experienced private engineers and agronomists available, said Mark Aquino, who directs the DNR Office of Business Support and Science.

The DNR would do spot checks and maintain final authority over every permit, Aquino said.
I'm sure these for-hire engineers and agronomists will be objective and have the strictest standards for making sure no one else may suffer harm, and will stand up to the people paying them to make an assessment. And those spot checks will be unannounced, under the strictest scrutiny, and not face any pressure to let things go from the hacks running the DNR. Riiiight.

After today, it is clearer than ever that there is no such thing as "Sportsmen for Walker." There are people who appreciate the outdoors, and want scenic areas to be maintained and want rural areas to remain inhabitable without the threat of downstream pollution. On the other side, there are people who are all about GUNS and blindly vote for Walker and the GOP because of GUNS.

But as this DNR "let business do our job for us" plan proves, you cannot be both a "sportsman" and a Walker supporter. And there are no "buts" allowed in that statement.

James Rowen has much more in-depth and quality analysis of this at the Political Environment.


  1. There are only two sets of people in the world - those who shit in the well and those who drink from it.

    The rise of a new feudalism continues.

    Lords and peasants is the end game for this ideology.

    1. 100% correct. Feudalism is the absolute goal, with us being vassals to the corporates who decide our fate.

      Capitalism or modern society, it ain't.