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Social Scientist, Economist, Muckraker, and Environmental Activist
Interests: People and Power, Politics, Economics, Outdoors, Environmental Education, Environmerntal Activism
Recent Activity
When was the last time you stopped to think how many atrocities are associated with 'fundamentalism'? Usually we think only of religious fundamentalism, but there are other forms including 'free market fundamentalism' and 'private property rights fundamentalism'. What else tends toward fundamentalism? What constitutes fundamentalism and why might it be... Continue reading
Posted May 6, 2012 at Undiscussable
Even as we steadily transition toward the age of electricity, oddly we will not discuss the huge problem of global warming induced by our continued addiction to fossil fuels. The problem is not one of scarcity so much, but rather the scarcity of places to put the waste products. As... Continue reading
Posted Apr 29, 2012 at Undiscussable
It is Earth Day, and I can't find any recognition of such on the mainstream Sunday morning TV feeds. Maybe that's a good thing, since mainstream media is about selling products, not about saving the planet. But maybe it's an indication of just how undiscussable our assault on Earth has... Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2012 at Undiscussable
Human population dynamics is one of the most undiscussable of the undiscussables. As the 42nd celebration of Earth Day approaches, I feel a need to say something about 'overcrowding'. Can you ever have "too many people?" Certainly, if you hike into a wilderness area and everywhere you look you see... Continue reading
Posted Apr 18, 2012 at Undiscussable
Dave has shared their blog Economic Dreams - Economic Nightmares
Apr 14, 2012
Dave has shared their blog Ecology and Economics
Apr 14, 2012
Dave has shared their blog Adaptive Forest Management
Apr 14, 2012
Dave has shared their blog Forest Policy - Forest Practice
Apr 14, 2012
Today is Easter. While most of my family, and most people in the US are singing praises to Jesus as God, I reflect on Kris Kristofferson's Jesus Was A Capricorn, thinking of Jesus as a social activist and political reformer in a culture dominated by religion. Here are a few... Continue reading
Posted Apr 8, 2012 at Undiscussable
This blog began as a thought experiment around the first of 2012. I created a paper list of things that I really ought to talk about — things that most people won't talk about. So today, I'm going to being working my way along that path. I expect to post... Continue reading
Posted Apr 8, 2012 at Undiscussable
The April issue of The Forestry Source, leads off with "The Sagebrush Rebellion Renewed: Bills Aim to Create Trusts to Manage Federal Timber," by Steve Wilent, Forestry Source editor. The article begins with what I perceive to be a very... Continue reading
Posted Apr 2, 2012 at Forest Policy - Forest Practice
Much government policy and some law resides in a realm philosopher Henry Frankfurt labels "bullshit"—in earlier times called humbug or balderdash. Much US Forest Service policy falls here too: regulation, manual and handbook directives. At least that's the way I've... Continue reading
Posted Mar 20, 2012 at Forest Policy - Forest Practice
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently overturned a lower court's ruling, declaring that the Forest Service's Adventure Pass violated the Recreation Enhancement Act (pdf). What I wonder is how the Forest Service thought that the Adventure Pass could pass... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2012 at Forest Policy - Forest Practice
To make sense of economic sustainability we have to delve into sustainability. Then we can see what sense is (or is not) made of 'economic sustainability' in the 2012 proposed NFMA rule (pdf). Sustainability At root, what we call sustainability... Continue reading
Posted Feb 9, 2012 at Forest Policy - Forest Practice
The long-awaited NFMA "proposed planning rule" is out. It looks pretty much like the Draft rule to me. I have longed to see the Forest Service embrace adaptive management for public lands, or adaptive governance, as I argued here last... Continue reading
Posted Feb 4, 2012 at Forest Policy - Forest Practice
The "Occupy Wall Street" movement is moving to Main Streets across the globe. It's about time. But I fear that the movement will be captured by the far left, just as the TEA party movement has been captured by the... Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2011 at Economic Dreams - Economic Nightmares
I spent most of my working life in the US Forest Service, battling fundamentalism. Most of the battles dealt with economics. My first job was to coordinate use of a linear programming model (FORPLAN) in the development of forest plans.... Continue reading
It was 1989 and the "timber wars" were raging. Having failed to gain voice on any important issues in the Forest Service via traditional channels, a few of us joined with Jeff Debonis to form a non-profit called the Association... Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2011 at Forest Policy - Forest Practice
"If planning is everything, maybe it's nothing." Aaron Wildavsky Let's face it, the "forest land and resource management plan" is an anachronism—an artifact of a bygone era. That era was in its heyday when the Office of Management and Budget... Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2011 at Forest Policy - Forest Practice
I have been keeping an eye on various proposals to "reinstate" Glass-Steagall for quite some time. Sometime I ought to post a more comprehensive list as to who is in favor (and in what sense) and who is opposed. Clearly... Continue reading
Posted May 13, 2010 at Economic Dreams - Economic Nightmares
Over at Fed Watch, Tim Duy reminds us to be keenly aware of the subtleties of international finance — and simpleton thinking that there are quick fixes. If everybody tries to export their way out of their finance problem all... Continue reading
Posted May 11, 2010 at Economic Dreams - Economic Nightmares
Early in my Forest Service career, Herbert Kaufman's The Forest Ranger (1960) found a place alongside Jeanne Nienaber Clarke and Daniel McCool's Staking Out the Terrain (1985) in many Forest Service offices. Both books were a source of pride for... Continue reading
Posted May 10, 2010 at Adaptive Forest Management
I've been thinking about the public debt problem lately. Is the problem really a non problem or at minimum a problem of creeping gradualism, as many Keynesians seem to argue? Or is the problem acute: the next big bubble to... Continue reading
When Garrett Hardin first proposed The Tragedy of the Commons, Science Dec. 1968, he used an example of nomadic herdsmen overusing land held in common without the "protection" of property rights. The problem posed by Hardin was that without some... Continue reading
Jeffery Sachs nails the essence of our American grown policy problem: Never a thoughtful discussion, always a bunch of talk show hosts (some masquerading as news outlets) batting around trivia. Even when so-called experts are called in, there is seldom... Continue reading
Posted May 2, 2010 at Ecology and Economics