Friday, August 9, 2013

Yosemite at Stake?

Z: I have a question down at the have an answer?

Yosemite At Stake

By Tom McClintock on August 2, 2013
Yosemite At StakeAugust 1, 2013
Mr. Speaker:
Yosemite Valley is a national treasure that was set aside in 1864 with the promise it would be preserved for the express purpose of (quote) "Public Use, Resort and Recreation."  Ever since, Americans have enjoyed a host of recreational opportunities and amenities as they have come to celebrate the splendor of the Valley.
Now, the National Parks Service, at the urging of leftist environmental groups, is proposing eliminating many of those amenities, including bicycle and raft rentals, horseback riding rentals, gift shops, snack facilities, swimming pools, and iconic facilities including the Ice Skating Rink at Curry Village, the art center and historic stone bridges that date back to the 1920's.
For generations, these facilities have enhanced the enjoyment of the park for millions of visitors, adding a rich variety of recreational activities amidst the breathtaking backdrop of Yosemite.  But today, the very nature and purpose of Yosemite is being changed from its original promise of "Public Use, Resort, and Recreation," to an exclusionary agenda that can best be described as, "Look, but don't touch."
As public outrage has mounted, these leftist groups have found willing mouthpieces in the editorial boards of the left-leaning San Francisco Chronicle and Sacramento Bee.  It is obvious their writers have either not read the report or are deliberately misrepresenting it to their readers. 
They say the plan is designed to relieve overcrowding at the park.  In fact, this plan compounds the overcrowding.
In 1997, flooding wiped out almost half the campsites at Yosemite Valley.   Congress appropriated $17 million to replace those campsites.  The money was spent.  The campsites were never replaced.  That's causing the overcrowding - half the campsites for the same number of visitors.  This plan would lock in a 30 percent reduction in campsites - and a 50 percent reduction in lodging - compared to the pre-flood era. 
Three swimming pools in the Valley give visitors a safe place with lifeguards for their children to cool off in the summer.  The Park Service wants to close two of them.  That means packed overcrowding at the remaining pool, pushing families seeking water recreation into the Merced River. 
They assure us they're not eliminating all of the shops at Yosemite, but only reducing the number of them.  Understand the practical impact on tourists: it means they must walk much greater distances to access these services and then endure long lines when they get there.
Another of their falsehoods is that the plan doesn't ban services like bike rentals, but just moves them to better locations.  The government's own report puts the lie to this claim.  It specifically speaks to (quote) "eliminating" and "removing" these services.  It goes on to specifically state: (quote) "Over time, visitors would become accustomed to the absence of these facilities and would no longer expect them as a part of their experience in Yosemite."  Their intent could not possibly be any clearer.   
We are assured that although bicycle rentals will be - and I am using the government's word - "eliminated" - from the Valley in the interest of environmental protection, visitors will still be free to bring their own bikes.  That invites an obvious question: what exactly is the environmental difference between a rented bicycle and a privately-owned bicycle?
We are assured, in the smarmy words of the Sacramento Bee, that the plan merely contemplates "relocating raft rentals, so they meet visitors at the river."  In truth, the plan specifically states that it will (quote) "Allow only private boating in this river segment," and will limit total permits to 100 per day.
Mr. Speaker, every lover of Yosemite needs to read this report.  It proposes breaking of the compact between the American people and their government that promised "public use, resort and recreation...for all time" when the park was established.
My district includes the Yosemite National Park and I represent the gateway communities that depend on park tourism to support their economies.  The affected counties and communities are unanimous in their vigorous opposition to this plan and in a recent phone survey, the people of these communities - who are jealous guardians of Yosemite - expressed opposition to it in numbers well exceeding 80 percent. 
Many things need to be done to improve gate access and traffic flow through the park.  But destroying the amenities that provide enjoyment for millions of Yosemite visitors each year is not among them.  (end of speech to Congress)

Z: What do you think?  Is it better to shut things down in an attempt for this gorgeous national treasure to remain pristine, or do you believe that the "public use, resort, and recreation" has done nothing to bring this beautiful park down?     I have many friends who love Yosemite and I've never once heard "Man, it's so dirty and crowded and ruined."  After all these years of people enjoying it.  What's this about, do you think?  And, let's face it, this is's not only Yosemite which will be targeted for these restrictions.



Linda said...

They are doing anything that will hurt the 'little people'. The gov't just doesn't care about its' people anymore. So many families go to these parks for their vacations, because they are pretty reasonable. It's like when they shut down the White House tours...but the 'important' people still get to see it.

I fear for our country!

Elmers Brother said...

We celebrated our 25th there....wasn't overcrowded and was incredibly beautiful.

Z said...

Linda, it feels like that, doesn't it. On top of everything else that's happening. I fear, too...

Elbro, I have NEVER EVER had anybody come back from Yosemite and complain about overcrowding or anything else.

This kind of stuff chills me because it dovetails a story I heard about that stupid little fish that supposedly faced extinction so the San Francisco Council closed our Central Valley (BIG food production for the whole country) down by sending water elsewhere...(the fish thrives in the Pacific Northwest, by the way, and is less than 1" long, so it's not even a food fish).
Anyway, on TV one night when they were talking about this awful situation drying up the Valley (less food production, less jobs, foreclosures on homes), one guy said "I've been on the Council for years now and I've never understood why the left has been so eager to find any excuse to close the Valley down". That never got picked up by the media, but..why, indeed?
Why restrict Yosemite like this?
WHY does all of this have to happen??

The leftwingers seem like the Party of NO and that's the idiotic mantra they use against the right!

Mustang said...

In the absence of land use, there is no human benefit to that land. Are we supposed to sit back and simply imagine the beauty of the park, or rely on federally subsidized postcards? Okay, so on the other hand, when the caldera erupts it won’t matter. Everything from Yosemite to the entire East Coast will be a cinder or blanketed in ash … and all those cute little wild creatures will be barbeque.

JonBerg said...

It seems to be a classic example of: "if it works why fix it?"

Duckys here said...

I think of Ansel Adams and his legacy which goes a good deal further than just exquisite landscape photography.

He was also clearly making a statement. "This is yours, don't screw it up."

Now, what level of use becomes a warning?
I don't know. But I do know that when I read something like "the National Parks Service, at the urging of leftist environmental groups ..." I know I'm not reading someone interested in debate. Just a lot of name calling from someone who seems to be the Richard Pombo replacement.

So just carry on and blame the "left" (whatever that is) for the fact that despoilment and drought are issues that require above board debate. Just use it and when it's used up we'll maybe have the end times or maybe not. That's the right wing mantra and it is not acceptable.

Pris said...

You know, years ago, in the seventies, I read a book by Zbigniew Brzezinski called "Between Two Ages - America's Role in the Technetronic Era"
I still have it.

In that book, he said "environmentalism will be used to manipulate the people". No surprise there, right? Most of us here have already figured that out!

On the back cover there is a comment about Brzezinski's analysis of the problem of liberalism.

Well now we're living with it, and if you can't see the problem by now, Ducky, you never will.

Unfortunately, the far left has to lie and cheat to gain power over us.
If those who want to keep people from enjoying a natural beautiful place like Yosemite, it's as though there is nothing they don't want to control.

One would think that we all would want our children and families to appreciate nature, and have fun while they do. But no, there are always those who think they know what's best, and who want to control everything.

Pris said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sam Huntington said...

So just carry on and blame the "left" (whatever that is)

What a complete phony you are Ducky; a true, black-hearted communist thug. “What? Me a leftist?” Were it not for the retching, I might laugh.

Anonymous said...


Mustang, you're's there for the BEAUTY and we should enjoy it.

Pris, I am surprised he understood about the environmentalist hammer over our heads even back then! Good information; thanks for weighing in with that.
It sure seems to be working because it pulls on heartstrings in silly ways that shouldn't.

JonBerg...SO WELL SAID. THAT is the entire point, isn't it? It's WORKING, most people (even some environmentalists) don't want anything changed, but this gov't is bent on keeping busy screwing with us, I guess.

Ducky, I'm not sure you speak for the great Ansel Adams, mostly because he'd probably have been embarrassed.

You can take a leap from my questions to "despoilment and drought"?
You REALLY think we all want Yosemite to be a pile of ashes and dried rivers because we believe things should stay as they are because, in all these years, it's remained pristine and lush and beautiful? Man, you'll go to ANY lengths.
And, truly, I wouldn't lean too hard on the 'blame the left' thing with the amount of nasty and constant blaming of the right from you kids.

Sam : :-) well said.

Bob said...

There's a good case to be made to privatize the management of our national parks. There is ample evidence to show that private management outdoes public management where the ultimate management is forced by political policy.

Under private management, who by definition must show a profit, there is no incentive to overload the carrying capacity of a venue as this will decrease the value.

As an example, look at what Warren Meyer has done. He runs a company that runs campgrounds and state parks that a state has found too expensive. Warren does a good job and makes a profit, too.

link: Recreation Resource Management

Duckys here said...

No, Huntington, it's a very accurate statement.

Let's get beyond your abject stupidity in calling me a communist and focus on the lack of any organized progressive movement in America.
Calling our current bunch of corporate pimps in Washington progressive is silly.

How far right doe the non Louie Gohmert component of America have to be to gain your approval? Because to call the Democratic party leftist is just absurd and the tragedy is that what we are seeing is a decline due to right wing policies. You'll learn.

Meanwhile just trash the place and if anyone says whoa just call them "leftists" (or the devil, eh Pris?).
I hope you are exercising and watching your diet because I don't want you to vapor lock when the absurdities of the fringe right wing get Hillary elected. Really, take care.

Waylon said...

Using the environment to manipulate the population is definitely a tactic used by an elite clique of authoritarian tyrants today. Zbigniew Brzezinski would know. He's a hand-picked protege of David Rockefeller.

Pris nailed this. The tactics have become more blatantly obvious over time, so we must be approaching their end game.

Another term that folks should become more familiar with is "Geoengineering", the idea that the Earth itself should be "engineered", i.e. manipulated and controlled. Does anybody believe that the environment such as the weather can or would be manipulated today? I believe there is good reason to believe the violent extremes of the weather today are examples of this being used by the "technocracy".

Leticia said...

I believe some places that have need of "healing" repair should be off limits, but to completely cut it off to the public, no, that's not right.

Impertinent said...


"Ducky, I'm not sure you speak for the great Ansel Adams, mostly because he'd probably have been embarrassed."

Can I then?

Z said...

Ducky, could you suggest where anybody suggests the place be "trashed?"

And, by the way, if the Democrats aren't leftist, what ARE they?

Leticia, I agree. If there was a spot that needed regeneration, I'd have hoped that the forestry people would take care of it.

Waylon; tell me what you mean about "their end game"...I think I know, but I'd love you to describe it... thanks xx

Imp; be my guest :-) YOU going to talk for the great Ansel Adams? !

Z said...

Ducky, by the way, with a Joe Biden in my bunch, I'd sure not be throwing stones at Louie Gohmert!

Pris said...

Z, It's pretty clear that what's happening now has been in the works for a long time. You're so correct. It is working bit by bit. This is how the far left operates.

Waylon, thanks, and yes I agree, it is blatantly obvious today, at least for those of us who can see through the smoke and mirrors!

As for you Ducky, I didn't mention the devil, but your bible, Saul Alinsky's "Rules for Radicals", is dedicated to Lucifer!! So, who is more familiar with the devil? Not me!

I call you regressives. What is being done by the far left, has been done before in many different countries, and not one of them has been better for their people. They live with fear, poverty, and utter control by their governments.

Impertinent said...


I had the fortune to be selected for the last workshop class Adams conducted in 1979. There were only 30 of us from around the country. It was like going to Moses on the mountain. I had great instructors too...Paul Caponigro, John Sexton ( who was Ansels assistant then ), Roy DeCarava and George Tice. A few years later I met Cole Weston and remained a good friend until his death.

I assisted Cole at several workshops down here and in North Carolina. Went camping with him and his latest 19 y.o squeeze ( when he was in his 70's! ) in Yosemite and Mono Lake.

Both were a great influence on me and photography. Especially Ansels Zone system which I still use to this day.

After he died there was an exhibit of his work at the Museum of Modern Art...a one man show in NYC which about 6 of us attended.

George Tice is a Jersey boy and I have several of his works as well as a dozen of Ansels throughout my home.

I assisted George in Asheville , NC a couple times at workshops up there.

Z said...

Pris, good comment!

Imp, that is fascinating! That is just terrific and I remember some of the photos you've sent me and they're REALLY GOOD; no wonder you got to attend that workshop. What a thrill to be with the masters.

TS/WS said...

The U.N. owns our parks now - they are not ours anymore, thanks to
Some just do not know about the left and their agenda worked out in 50yr increments, called projects in every Lodge in the country and some of the world. The Blue Lodge is European and grants franchises here in the US.
Texas Lodges was started in the 1830's Lake Jackson Lodge.
And the Lodges works out all the Left's uprisings in stages.
Yea, in case you did not get it - the Mason/Knight Templar/Eastern Star just to name a few - like was stated earlier the Scroll and Key.
The Media does not twist the reports around for their enjoyment of working up the high blood pressure of the 'right' only;
It's Fascism 101.

Impertinent said...


Thanks. It's a once in a lifetime experience. I'll never forget it. I have some great pics of Ansel and me too.

But the most fun guy was Cole Weston. He never got "old".

Check your email.

Z said...

BOB...privatizing management, not ownership, right? not selling it.
I heard Larry Elder speak at a dinner once and he had the mostly conservative crowd until he said he thought a lot of American park lands should be sold to the Chinese to solve some of our financial, what a CHILL he put over THAT dining room!

So, you're suggesting a fee is paid to a mgmt company...why would they need profit, too? Why not leave that profit part as is so it covers costs but that's it?

i'm not sure overloading would look like decreased value to a company interested in a profit..?

Waylon said...

Z, the end game, the final result and destination of all the efforts of the progressive advancement of the power of the state and imposition of of rules upon the ordinary citizens of the world, would be a state in which every movement, breath or thought would be monitored. The world that Orwell described decades ago.

Bob said...

Z said, "i'm not sure overloading would look like decreased value to a company interested in a profit..?"

Think about it. By letting a private management company manage parks for a fee, the management has to make a profit or go bankrupt. If they let tourists and users abuse the property, revenues will decrease. It is an economic reality that things work this way.

The link I gave in the comment is for a business where a guy in Arizona manages parks that some states would have had to shut down because of resource problems. Warren pays the state money to manage the property, and charges admission to the parks. The parks stay clean, facilities stay up to date, and everybody is happy except for those cheap folks who don't want to pay their own way.

Private management is a very good alternative. For example, the San Diego Zoo is managed by a private, non-profit corporation. The city owns the land and leases it to the corporation. The City owns the animals, too. Maybe it is especially fortunate that the Mayor has nothing to do with the zoo.

When governments manage things, the organization is automatically politically charged, and inefficiencies abound. That is just the way governments roll.

Pris said...

Waylon, Yes, you are so right! It seems we all will be Winston Smith if we don't stand up against a totalitarian government. Orwell was prophetic, wasn't he?

Just this morning, on Fox, they talked about a "smart TV", which means we could be watched through our television.

Mr. Pris said years ago, "anything that transmits can also be a receiver, it's just a matter of time when this will eventually be done".

beamish said...

Dynamite it all away and build a Wal-Mart. Everyone's happy.