Bill Schneider gives it a detailed analysis-
I won’t go over the details because Schneider seems to do a good job, but my general impression is that there is no reason for Montana conservationists to support this, even though it is not immediately clear whether the “stewardship” elements are good, bad or neutral.
What Tester’s Forest Bill Really Does. “Montana Sen. Jon Tester’s Forest Jobs and Recreation Act attempts to cover a lot of ground and address a lot of issues, but will it be enough to win passage?” New West.
I don’t see any Wilderness designation in this bill that is a wow! This is great . . . something that would offset the other provisions.
I haven’t been to some of these areas, but I have to the southwest Montana ones. These have one thing in common and wrong — they are all abused by livestock.
The provision grandfathering livestock grazing in designated Wilderness area was absolutely necessarily in 1964 to get the Wilderness Act passed, and in many of the early Wilderness areas, livestock grazing was not a big issue because it was a minor use generally affecting just a small part of the total area.
In recent years, however, areas have been proposed for Wilderness designation where livestock effects are seen and felt on almost every acre. Yes, these areas are roadless, with little previous logging activity, and no permanent structures, but to call them places where the effects of humans are not lasting or very evident is a bad joke.
This bill continues in this bad tradition and grandfathers this use.
I’ve always been a strong supporter of Wilderness areas, but I refuse to support any more cow or sheep wilderness areas. It’s a joke, and just like depredation payments to livestock operators for losses to predators, this doesn’t win their support. They always opposed Wilderness and they always will no matter who low you bow before their majesty.
I’d rather have a clear trout stream with a road along side it, than some cowshit filled mud wallow you reach after a steep hike of 5 miles.
Why give up anything to win a pile of dust? Let’s kill this sucker!