SENATE BILL 1959 … The number of this bill takes us back to the McCarthy Era, and the reality is even worse! S 1959 – the “Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007” – sets up a national commission to decide if any individual, even one advocating “social change”, is a terrorist … If this bill is passed, it will empower this new commission to declare someone who writes and/or speaks on behalf of an “extremist belief system” as a “homegrown terrorist,” resulting in the stripping of U.S. citizenship, making them subject to torture and/or execution, with no habeas corpus rights, no ability to challenge their detention even in the U.S. Supreme Court … To see a full PDF text of the bill, go to http://tinyurl.com/3a3y2z (this will link you to rs6.net and the bill itself) … Thomas Jefferson would have been deemed a terrorist, under this act, for writing these words: “What country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not warned from time to time that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms.”
IMPEACHMENT … This president, his administration, and his supporters in Congress have gone too far. The National Lawyers Guild has written up a list of impeachment charges and unanimously called for impeachment proceedings to begin: http://nlg.org/news/index.php?entry=entry071106-092734 … Believe me, I don’t say this lightly. But I think the time has come for true patriots to stand up to this creeping fascism and stop our country’s incremental slide towards a police state.
WEEKLY QUOTA … “Here in America we are descended in blood and in spirit from revolutionists and rebels – men and women who dare to dissent from accepted doctrine. As their heirs, may we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion.” – Dwight David Eisenhower
WATER WATER EVERYWHERE … Finally found a suitcoat that fit (no easy task for the short & stout) at the Goodwill in Manitou Springs and wore it to National Groundwater Conference in Denver, where I was on a panel about what communities are doing to bridge the gap between the growing awareness of groundwater's role in future water scarcity on this planet & what's being done … I was proud to report on our High Alpine Zone District, after our collaboration with the EPA on nitrogen deposition in the high country; on our Intergovernmental San Juans Fen Partnership – protecting four unique alpine fens in the ski expansion area with a long-term monitoring project; on our Wetlands regulations in our County Land Use Code; on our support for the Telluride Institute’s San Miguel Watershed Coalition; on the Settlement Committee’s maintenance of the high zinc water quality standard in the Idarado CERCLA suit and on the tough negotiating bargain we struck in getting an Oversight Committee funded as part of the cleanup … It was a special honor to meet Susan Seacrest, the founding director of The Groundwater Foundation (www.groundwater.org, based in Nebraska) – educating and motivating people to care for and about groundwater. Leaving after over 20 years at the helm, Seacrest has just won the prestigious Heinz Award for the Environment, sharing the $250,000 prize with Dr. Bernard Amadei of CU Boulder for his founding of Engineers Without Borders.
JUSTICE GREG HOBBS … This esteemed Colorado Supreme Court judge gave the keynote speech about water, reading from his book of poems, Colorado Mother of Rivers: Water Poems (Colorado Foundation for Water Education, Denver, 2005) … “When I was young the water sang … And shaped a bed to lay me on … I call the green-backed cutthroat trout … I call the scarlet to the jaw … as morning calls … the Arkansas” … I’d heard a rumor from an old seminary classmate from St. Joseph’s in Mountain View that Hobbs had been an upper classman when I was there 1959-65. So I asked him, after his talk. And sure enough, we both attended seminary together in California almost 35 years ago – one of those strange rhizomic connections that you’d have a hard time justifying even as fiction.
AQUIFER BASINS … Many of us in the Bioregional Movement (which helped found the Green Party in this country) felt it was a great breakthrough when we started drawing watershed boundaries, going back to the kind of water-based thinking that John Wesley Powell advocated for the West, where water and its scarcity are the defining characteristics of our semi-arid Four Corners region. But bioregions owe their existence to surface water. What about groundwater? … To that end Mike Wireman, the EPA’s groundwater expert here in Colorado, issued a call for complete mapping of aquifers, particularly as development – both residential and industrial – threatens to change the landscape of this state irremediably in the next few years … It made me realize that the County needs to find or draw up maps of the aquifer basins and try to keep development away from critical recharge areas, as well as protecting discharge areas from pollution … I think we ought to adopt a groundwater map as part of the Land Use Code and start becoming better stewards of our most precious resource – groundwater!
OVERQUOTA … “Water will be the defining national conservation issue of this century.” –Rick Cables, Intermountain Regional Forester (USFS)
ROSEMERRY’S NEW BOOK … Red Rock Press has just released Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer’s More Christmas Angels in time for the holiday season. Available locally and on Amazon.com.
© 2007 Art Goodtimes
THE TALKING GOURD
Where To Find The Lesson For Today
Was it in the way the sled
refused to stay a straight course?
Perhaps in the ramshackle trees shedding snow,
the sunlit flakes dangling like tinsel.
Or in the effortless flight of the chickadees,
how they sang as they fluttered in blank filigree?
The desiccated baby mouse in my boot
which I pulled from storage, what there?
Open the chapter named difficult, strange,
and let the eyes land. Anywhere.
-Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer
San Miguel County Poet Laureate