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Administration's Approval Of Soda Mountain Solar Project Draws Heavy Criticism

Apr 6th - 21:12pm | ecbuck

Unsuprisingly Lee fails to even attempt to substantiate his claims that big oil and Walmart are subsidized.  He then goes on to make further baseless accusations and blame business despite the fact that it has been business and the profit motive that has been the primary driver of the advancement of technology.  Smart enough to follow Europe?  No thanks

Apr 6th - 20:54pm | Lee Dalton

Probably the very best way to install enough solar power to make a difference is to install as much as possible on rooftops of individual homes and businesses.  How many million acres of those exist in this country?

Apr 6th - 19:11pm | ecbuck

Why EC, you carry on the tradition today!

Apr 6th - 18:22pm | Alfred Runte

If you were a Scots-Irishman arriving in Virginia's Tidewater, you learned quickly who was in "control"--the planter class and their idea of "government." It became a familiar pattern until the country was finally settled. New arrivals were largely closed out.

Apr 6th - 16:47pm | ecbuck

 habitual deniers

Apr 6th - 15:47pm | ecbuck

We hardy pioneers are not that hardy. When we said we hated government, we didn't mean its benefits. Alfred,  I didn't realize the pioneers headed west because they hated government.  Perhaps you could document that.

Apr 6th - 15:45pm | Rick B.

Denials by habitual deniers aside, you are of course correct, Lee. Ask any Alaskan about the incredible subsities to the oil companies that are a reality. The food stamps and other government-paid necessities of life that Walmart's underpaid, underbenefitted, employees get do indeed function as a subsidy to Walmart, owned by one of the world's most affluent families.

Apr 6th - 15:43pm | Alfred Runte

Lee, it's the American Way. It began with forts and military patrols on the frontier. Send help! We hardy pioneers are not that hardy. When we said we hated government, we didn't mean its benefits. We simply meant its costs. Why not a subsidy for everyone? That's what we have. Somehow, we all get a subsidy. The tax code is thousands of pages long.

Apr 6th - 14:58pm | ecbuck

We subsidize big oil, Walmart.   Baloney.  Been through this before.  "Big Oil" pays huge taxes.  A far higher percentage of their income than most any other industry.  Perhaps you can explain how we "subsidize" Walmart.  

Apr 6th - 14:47pm | Lee Dalton

We subsidize big oil, Walmart and countless other political donors to Congress -- so why not include alternate energy?

Apr 6th - 14:01pm | ecbuck

If it works, it shouldn't need a tax break--and that goes for single-family housing, too. Why should I get a tax break just because I own a home? Believe it or not, I agree 100% (to the horror of many of my Realtor associates).  Tax policy should be based on raising revenues, not influencing behavior.  

Apr 6th - 13:47pm | Alfred Runte

EC is right. My neighbor just bought a Leaf, for which he received a $7500 tax break. He also pays no gas taxes for the upkeep of Washington State's roads--roads he still gets to use. Even his annual registration was "forgiven."

Apr 6th - 12:17pm | ecbuck

 they are saving a great deal of money on their electric bills. Only because you helped pay for those panels.  

Apr 6th - 11:59am | rmackie

Alfred, I have many friends who both own homes and a small business, as well as some local ranchers, who use both roof top solar, solar panals on wells to pump water for cattle, well the list is lengthly, they are saving a great deal of money on their electric bills.

Apr 6th - 10:40am | Alfred Runte

Alas, Ron, I wish it were true, but some of the biggest supporters of this nonsense can be found in the headquarters of the Sierra Club, Audubon, et al. Meanwhile, can you feel the Bern? He has the young people snowed, as well. The biggest problem they face in their lives isn't climate change. It is rather finding and keeping a job.

Apr 6th - 10:34am | ecbuck

Ron - you need to come to the Peoples Republic of Breckenridge.  They are planting solar "gardens" all over town to save the world.

Apr 6th - 10:27am | ecbuck

  Alfred - you mean like this?

Apr 6th - 10:21am | Alfred Runte

EC, this is one place where we absolutely agree. The environmentalists brought this on themselves by believing in "scientists" peddling a technological fix. Oh, Dorothy! Don't look behind the curtain! The Wizard needs to keep his secrets!

Apr 6th - 10:21am | rmackie

Interesting, what little knowledge I do have on the issue is that conservation/environmental groups have always pushed for more rooftop solar, localized distribution as opposed to these massive solar/wind farms on public lands. 

Apr 6th - 09:11am | ecbuck

It's alway amusing when these "conservation" groups are hoisted by their own petard.  

Lottery For Viewing Synchronous Fireflies Coming To Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Apr 6th - 18:38pm | Colleen

I'm happy it's so popular, but sad at the same time.  Gone are the days of just planning on experiencing this event. Hope this system works for the National Park and everyone involved.  Hope we're two of the lucky ones! 

UPDATED: Former Yellowstone Chief Ranger Investigated For Letting Guests Stay In His Park Housing

Apr 6th - 10:19am | #knowtheOIG

As a BLM employee who has been the subject of an unfounded OIG investigation, I can only say that before you have any opinion on any story you ready about an OIG investigation, you should learn about how the OIG operates.  Accusations can be completely anonymous and, whether based on fact or not, employees are considered GUILTY and forced to prove their innocence.

Apr 4th - 12:36pm | Aarglebargle

it should be noted that employees pay full market rates for their government quarters, established in comparison to the local housing market. In resort areas it can be quite expensive. 

Apr 2nd - 18:12pm | rmackie

EC, that was the position of DOI to the letter. 

Apr 2nd - 15:16pm | SmokiesBackpacker

I think that people find it an issue, its just that there are so many issues under the embattled Jarvis cabal, that taxpayers can't keep their eyes on each particular scandal.  The American people have given the NPS such a pass.  We know that Jarvis would never make it in the private sector, but he flourishes and is promoted in government "service".

Apr 2nd - 09:38am | Anonymous

It's disturbing that people find this to be a non-issue. There is clearly an ethics issue here. Does nobody see that? And now Reid is a superintendent? And his wife still works for the park? Seems to be the MO in the NPS; promote and overlook instead of discipline. Everyone is covering for each other. Sadly, the NPS is in trouble. #FindYourMorality

Pruning the Parks: Lake Texoma Recreation Area (1946-1949)

Apr 5th - 13:19pm | Stephen L Willis

Do you know where the government documents related to the decommissioning of Lake Texoma Recreational Area are archived?

By the Numbers: Death Valley National Park

Apr 5th - 09:10am | ecbuck


Apr 4th - 17:13pm | attendance by w...

To plan a trip with less folks there, I'd love to find info on the attendance by month, or better yet, by week, for the last few years.

The Gate Lodges Of Acadia National Park: Rockefeller's Little Castles

Apr 4th - 12:45pm | Susan Scarborou...

We lived in the Brown Mountain Gate house when I was born in Bar Harbor in 1951. My father, Charles Scarborough was a park ranger at Acadia.  His specialty was reforestation after fires and he was transferred there from Shenandoah after the big Bar Harbor fire.My older sister Sally was in High School there.

Trail Damage At Ninety Six National Historic Site Prompts Meeting With Equestrians

Apr 4th - 07:48am | SmokiesBackpacker

The place that needs a meeting like this is the Great Smokies.  Horses RUIN the Cataloochee and many other areas but they are so politically entrenched that they are allowed to entrench the trail system perpetually.

National Parks: Going To The Dogs!

Apr 4th - 05:51am | I♡mydog

You're not supposed to leave your dog or your kids unattended in a vehicle, so to me it's the same thing. I SORT of understand the "it could be harmful to your pet or the surroundings" so why not make it mostly pet friendly with warning and at your own risk? Suggest that upon entering the park there's doggies waste bags given and maybe a fee so that all may enjoy.

UPDATED: National Park Service Director Urged By Congressional Representatives To Survey Workforce For Sexual Harassment

Apr 3rd - 16:46pm | Green Thumb

Doing a survey is one thing; taking action on survey findings is altogether something else.  I'm guessing most permanent NPS employess with more than a short term tenure have taken multiple surveys (i.e. employee viewpoint surveys, management review surveys) on the same topics providing the same feedback more than once people until they wonder at what point the exercise became futile.

Apr 1st - 14:49pm | Retired Ethical...

I'm still trying to understand what it means when the Superintendent takes "Full responsibility" for failing to act on such an egregious, longstanding issue. Is he going to be fired or subject to demotion or other disciplinary action? Or is he on track for promotion, which is what happened the last time he was involved in scandal?

Unresolved Search-and-Rescue Cases Are Scattered Throughout the National Parks

Apr 3rd - 16:34pm | epublius

The simplest explanation is generally the most logical. The number one rule I learned as a little boy hiking in the Adirondacks, Catskills and Alps is that you never stray from the trail. Mr. Paulides points to many missing lost on the trail, last in line cases but I tend to believe these individuals got "turned around" in the forest and got hopelessly lost.

Photography In The National Parks: Winter’s Desolation In Big Bend National Park

Apr 3rd - 14:53pm | roseman2000

Thanks for another nice article and photographs. It is indeed a long drive through nowhere but it's worth the trip. Left Chiso Basin Lodge at dawn after Thanksgiving weekend and drove to the Rio Grand stopping at overlooks and short hikes and did not see another soul for 4 hours until I returned from the Santa Elena Canyon Trail. Talk about peaceful and quiet!

Visiting Dry Tortugas National Park With Yankee Freedom III

Apr 3rd - 14:21pm | roseman2000

Saw a burned out raft on one of the Keys along the way. Probably Cubans seeking asylum (eg. one foot on land) and hoping the smoke signal would attract the US Coast Guard.

Op-Ed |National Park Service Undermines America's Best Idea

Apr 3rd - 10:11am | rmackie

Nice post Ray, this has been my experience in some cases also. I understand the need for sensitivity for the concerns of public, SWAT Team tactics or a to heavy handed enforcement approach often badkfires. I always thought the NPS had a good Law Enforcement policy, "the lowest effective level of enforcement" in dealing with violations.

Apr 3rd - 00:54am | Ray Bane

All-too-often, government career bureaucrats have a tendency to avoid battles for fear of losing them - even when important principles are at stake.  The National Park Service is not immune to this pattern of capitulation to avoid confrontation.  To not make waves is commonally considered the mark of a successful manager or administrator.

Connecting The Dots: Fort Union Trading Post And "The Revenant"

Apr 3rd - 09:33am | Cyndi

What my husband and I got out the movie, other than enjoying gorgeos scenery, was the graphic demonstrations of the 5 Basic Necessities to Sustain Life. We are backpackers and had recently taken Wilderness Survival courses.  The 5 Basic Necessities are: 1) WILL TO LIVE 2) Shelter 3) Fire 4) Water 5) Food; in that order! See if you can identify these in the movie!

Musings From An IMAX Theater: What Did You Think Of "National Parks Adventure"?

Apr 3rd - 09:21am | Globetrotter girl

I loved the film. You can't possibly get it all in a 50 minute segment. It's purpose is to share the majesty and allow those to travel visually who may not be able to visit physically. Also, the goal is to inspire. I am looking for all the music credits. It flashed so quickly I only got Springsteen, Beck and Jason Mraz. Can anyone get a full list or full screen shot of the songs?

Collapse of "Wall Arch" Proves Gravity Does Work at Arches National Park

Apr 2nd - 16:53pm | ChinaDoll of th...

Thank God no one was swinging on it at the time.

Paddling The Border Route In The Boundary Waters

Apr 2nd - 08:52am | jenny wettersten

I would like to talk to someone who has done the Eastern 1/2 of the Voyageur's Highway, especially for portage and river info.  Any chance of that? I can be reached at [email protected] Thanks!

Cattle Grazing At Point Reyes National Seashore Challenged In Lawsuit

Apr 2nd - 08:42am | beachdumb

The problem with an EA or EIS is that the NPS has a track record of deception and lying to support thier agenda. The fact is we can no longer get a fair assessment from the NPS. The delusional progressives have made their bed...

Apr 1st - 23:53pm | trailadvocate

OK, Rambler, what is it that you do that puts you so connected to the environment?  You flush an Eco Toilet or what is it that makes you the inlightened one?  Man up, Rambler (Grasshopper)!

Apr 1st - 16:35pm | Rambler

you won't find me crying for the welfare ranchers

Lifetime "Senior" and "Access" Park Passes Now Available By Mail

Apr 1st - 18:47pm | Guy Dana

I will be 62 in July but am travling to 3 national parks in June. Is a senior pass good for the YEAR you turn 62 , or only AFTER your actual birthdate?

Park Rangers From Around The World Set To Convene In Colorado

Apr 1st - 12:05pm | Bob Krumenaker

Registration to participate in the World Ranger Congress is open to anyone who has a connection to, or interest in, the work rangers and others do to protect and manage the world's best places.  For information, please see

National Park Service Proposing Changes To How Objects Left At Vietnam Memorial Are Handled

Apr 1st - 12:02pm | Anonymous

If its not about the wall or the Vietnam war it shouldn't be part of the The Vietnam collection

Did National Park Service Overlook Court Rulings In Abdicating Wildlife Management Responsibilities At Grand Teton?

Apr 1st - 11:05am | rmackie

Thank you Traveler for the informative post.  Also thanks to NPCA and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition for filing the lawsuit.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide