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Sep 24, 2015 — by: Dennis Linthicum
Categories: Economy, Energy, Natural Resources, Politics

The KBRA media blitz gets a second wind

DamCurrently, a grossly misguided dam removal agenda is sweeping across the US. In my backyard, Klamath County, Oregon we have a classic example. So-called stakeholders want politicians to give agriculture subsidized energy, give tribal interests 100,000 acres of US forest land while detonating 4 hydroelectric dams and giving the bill to taxpayers and utility rate payers.  The dams are located in Southern Oregon and Northern California and the agreements forged by this cabal are known as the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreements (KBRA).

The KBRA proponent’s siren song for “water certainty" has reached a fevered pitch. The legislative clock is running out of time and the special interest stakeholders are desperate to sway public opinion in favor of destroying four hydroelectric dams on the Klamath River.

The KBRA is really no different than the false promises of Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign. Bernie offers Utopia - free college, food-stamps, housing, even the kitchen-sink. This type of despotic lie has plagued democracies throughout history. It is not new.

We, as hard-working, tax-paying citizens need to evaluate the real consequences of promises championed by self-serving special interest groups. We must decide whether they are true or false, cost-effective or wasteful, realistic or appropriate.

While reviewing the KBRA specifics we should also consider Thomas Paine’s timeless question, “Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery?"

Bait the trap and rats will come

Where I live pack-rats abound. The vermin are always trying to nest in the engine compartment of my back-hoe, my wood pile or under our patio decking. The best solution that I’ve found is trapping them. Once rats are present, the only way to catch them is with something very attractive or palatable. I use peanut butter, raisins, cheese or whatever is at hand. It works pretty well and I continually upset the rats' dreams for a worry-free and blissful existence.  

Why do we allow ourselves to be baited, like rats, with schemes that we know are too good to be true?

Ask yourselves, which of Oregon’s legislators could resist the bait, from Obama, to spend $310,000,000 to create the fiasco known as Cover Oregon? Where did that money come from and what did we get for it?

Or, let’s look at Obama-Care. It promises “affordable health care” for everyone. Yet, its projected costs will exceed  $2,000,000,000,000 in less than ten years. Are we, as taxpayers, really hoping to snag great healthcare out of this deal?

KBRA Promises

The KBRA promises “water certainty” without addressing reservoirs or water storage needs.  Agricultural, metropolitan and environmental water demands can only be met by plentiful access to precious sources.

If water storage in our upper elevation snowpack remains below normal then it would behoove us to store water elsewhere rather than allowing bureaucrats to drain it into the salty Pacific.

Conservation mandates are not the answer. Mandates from bureaucracies cannot account for the wide variety of current circumstances, production value or efficiency measures that are in use by farmers and ranchers across the west.

Government dictates imply that marble-halled bureaucrats have the wisdom to efficiently allocate scarce resources. Yet, you and I know, governments are not efficient. The private sector, however, is the seedbed of innovation and efficiency.

Innovative technology can do the unimaginable - think computers, cars and cameras. Which governmental agency foresaw smart-phone technology 10 years ago?  Yet, the next 50 years of “water certainty” is supposedly accomplished by destroying four dams today – Go figure.

Future Needs

Also, the KBRA promises “certainty” without accounting for future fresh-water needs. Over the next 10 years, global population increases alone will demand 18% more fresh-water from developed countries and 50% more from under-developed countries.

The KBRA also promises plentiful Salmon, 1) without fisheries, and 2) without addressing the release of over 20,000,000 cubic yards of toxic sediment into the Klamath River.

This toxic volume would be 1,000 times greater than the tragic spill which the bumbling EPA dumped into the Animas River of Colorado this summer.

RatsThe trap is set; the spring is loaded; the stories are flooding through the media. Will any of us be clever enough to get some stale peanut butter, or moldy cheese without the trap snapping shut?

The KBRA is a “grand bargain” from a minority of stakeholders claiming to act on behalf of the majority. They are calling on us to surrender our wallets, our land, and our posterity’s future for false assurances of a Utopian dream that can never be realized.

Prosperity for America

Our goal ought to be for a prosperous America – an America that is capable of feeding the world. We have the natural resources. We have the men, women and families who are skilled in the technologies needed for global competition. We have cheap, abundant, renewable hydroelectric resources. We have untold varieties of salmon, beef, pork, poultry and dairy products in every grocery store. We provide fruits, vegetables, grains and livestock across the globe and we can provide more.

But this goal will not be achieved by driving families, ranchers, and farmers off the land. That is not be the sort of “certainty" that the Klamath Basin, or America, needs.

8 Comments

  1. Paul Clark ~ Sep. 25, 2015 @ 11:51 am

    I am either language, or a "read between the lines" challenged person because every time I read an article explaining the KBRA and its Utopian outcome I am more puzzled than when I started. What language is there in the agreement that says we are guaranteed water every year? The only unambiguous statement I have read is if we don't agree to all of the "smoke & mirrors" we won't have water in the future. It reminds me of the non-binding vote for dam removal. In fact it was most likely written by the same people who worded the proposition so people would mistakenly vote for dam removal when they were against it. I believe the supporters of KBRA are afraid to state the agreement in laymen terms because of the uproar it would cause. So far the people have been smart enough to see through the BS. Maybe KBRA should try the Nancy Pelosi method, you won't know what it says until you pass the bill! #
  2. Finnious T Fogbottom ~ Sep. 25, 2015 @ 6:50 pm

    Great article! I find it interesting as well that the pro-ponents aren’t saying much about the green certainty which they well know will spring squarely on them in August of next year. As it turns out, three enviro-groups forced the US District Court to order the USFWS to complete a process which will most likely result in an all out ban of agricultural activities from local federal agricultural lease land. Though they are not stakeholders “they” seem to have the same goal as the majority of sitting stakeholders; free the Klamath Basin from agriculture etc. etc. etc. etc. That trap, which is the last artifact of the Clinton’s National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997 is known as a Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP). It in effect awards USFWS the power to ban commercial etc. activates from not only some 22,000 acres of Lower Klamath and Tule Lake National Wildlife Refuge lease land, but from nearby private land as well. Not to worry though, it only has teeth if “they” decide that human activities as such bother (or whatever) wildlife. Well, at least there is some real honest to goodness “certainly” out there finally. I guess I’d step down from a certain position too if this was all coming to light on my watch. Finnious #
  3. Cody Flecker ~ Sep. 26, 2015 @ 9:42 am

    The real issue before us is dependency. How much are we as people living is a supposedly free country going to take from the Government when the Government simply throws us a bone after bone simply to motivate us to think the way that the Government wants us to think. I live in a very small Central Oregon town with maybe 45 people in it on any one given day. To my knowledge, only three families are not on some sort of Government welfare scheme. Everything from Food Stamps, to Aid to Dependent Children, to Disability et al. These people for the most part can work, look for a job, or do something creative with their time. Most smoke Marijuana on a daily basis, and some even grow their own Marijuana in defiance of the law. A Bureaucrat in Salem will decided what the farmers and ranchers will need regardless of what the farmers and ranchers really need. In the end, we will all become dependent on the Government simply to leave us alone and let us make decisions that we know something about. The dams on the Klamath River are needed by the ranchers and farmers along with the people, and they should be left alone. Why destroy something that works and pays its way, for an unknown that will mean an end to our successful way of life. #
  4. Not Important ~ Sep. 27, 2015 @ 12:07 am

    Are you implying that dam removal might be what's causing the oceans to rise and not global warming????? Hmm, maybe some research should be done on the subject, supported by a government grant, to study another "dam theory." #
  5. Brian Quick ~ Sep. 28, 2015 @ 7:39 am

    Its great that people can write or speak so eloquently without saying a darn thing. Politicians are perfect examples. This story really says nothing, nothing about whats in the KBRA, nothing about it's affects on agriculture, and nothing of the impacts on the local Klamath Basin economy. I'm not one of those people. I don't mince words and weave around the truth. The Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement (KBRA), the Klamath Hydrologic Settlement Agreement (KHSA), and the Upper Basin Comprehensive Agreement (UKBCA) leave nothing for basin agriculture or economy but empty barns, fields, and buildings. Look around at the countless empty buildings in the basin today. Cutting to the chase: 1).There is no guaranteed water for agriculture in the "Agreements". Show me the page where any guarantee is "clearly" stated. There are stipulations on water year, downstream needs and in stream flows that will certainly take up most of the water in any given year. 2). Lake levels were set in 2001 by USFWS and NMFS to meet the requirements of suckers in the lake and salmon in the rivers. The lake and river levels have been held at artificial elevations every since. A recent 10 year study, 2001 to 2011, conducted by the United States Geological Survey shows that the populations of Lost River and shortnosed sucker has declined by up to 86% in that time frame. Clearly, management of the lake for fish is not working and it's time for a new strategy. 3). Same goes for downstream flows for salmon. The first question that comes to mind is, did salmon historically enter the lower Klamath River in August. Data and photos would suggest that the river levels in August and September would not support salmon runs at this time. Long story short, holding river levels for salmon may be creating an artificially early run and may be harming the salmon more than helping them. We are creating perfect habitat for disease in the lower river by maintaining flows and not allowing the river banks to dry and kill off the disease host M. speciosa (a polychaete worm). 4) Need I go on?? because I can. There is clearly no scientific basis for holding water at current elevations in Upper Klamath Lake or maintenance or elevated flows in the river. In 2001 the National Academy of Sciences came to the same conclusion and in fact now is saying "I told you so". Basin residents need to band together and fight the stupidity of the so called "science" behind the three above stated "agreements" for the benefit of the basin agriculture, for the benefit of the basin. Hope at least a portion of that was as eloquently put and some of our local, state, and federal politicians. #
  6. Finnious T Fogbottom ~ Sep. 29, 2015 @ 4:18 pm

    Brian, you are absolutely right about the facts, yet powerful are those who can change and reshape the facts to fit their agendas and thus refine the problems and the solutions so that they mesh with their horrible goals. To the pragmatic mind the KBRA etc. etc. are as hollow as Ohbummer Care and the Iraq Nudecular Deal. My affordable Hellfare medical insurance renewal proposal just came in – it is just short of double the cost! They give nothing, take away everything yet their insane programs are promoted and accepted by dopes as if they are just so so so good for all. The only way to beat them is by mass public shame. Yet they control the majority of media as well. And no, it didn’t go very well for the Klamath faux science whistle blowers so far. Things are kept exuberantly sealed and silenced because “they” are so excited about their (just another really) run at global Marxism. This time the coop is Green in color (Red all the same) and it is all going quite well for them so far. All they had to do was build mass glib concern for the negatively human influenced future of the world and convince the gullible that human caused climate change has already resulted. That has finally ended up (amongst other losses) in a redistributed set of formerly constitutionally secured rights (property and water rights included). In a way it is like we are living in Germany in the 1930’s. For a look at the tip of the iceberg check the following links out. The more you look the more you will come to realize that the Klamath Basin is not the only place where Green domination is in play. Nor are we the only place with a water users association. http://biostate.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-bioregional-state-as-constitution_29.html Towards a Bioregional State http://www.sustainable-city.org/bioreg/ Shasta Bioregion http://www.globalexchange.org/communityrights/rightsofnature/stillheart Rights of Nature and the Economics of the Biosphere: The Stillheart Declaration http://nwri.org/the-wildlands-project/un-biospheres-and-world-heritage-parks/ UN Biospheres and World Heritage Parks ://www.undueinfluence.com/global_green_goals.htm Global Green Goals: How Environmentalists Intend to Rule the World Radical environmentalism (the new Maoism) has been quite effective in convincing the very young, the very old and all ages between that all can be made well and right again and we can get back to the paradise of the Garden of Eden and pre Tower of Babel human unity by just getting rid of capitalism. Funny how that has always been the goal of the competing Marxisms. Not so funny though how things always go to Hell when we try to get back to paradise and peace without the one true God through Christ! Finnious #
  7. Mike Montchalin ~ Oct. 7, 2015 @ 8:45 pm

    Stockholders (aka shareholders) have an ownership interest. Stakeholders have a non-ownership interest, which is not usually explicitly defined. I am concerned by the fact that 'stakeholders' has become a buzzword. And there is rarely a reference to stockholders and the rights and responsibilities of private ownership. But that is what we get when so many assets are claimed by the government. #
  8. Ron Wiggins ~ Oct. 13, 2015 @ 7:06 pm

    Your article reminds me of Ben Franklins famous quote: "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." They always make False Promises of good, which require the sacrifice of tangible, and Very hard won property. KBRA NO WAY. NOT TODAY, NOT ANYDAY! Recognize the threat and Stand! #

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