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New Mexican (Newspaper) - October 2, 2005, Santa Fe, New Mexico THE NEW MEXICAN OPINIONS THE SANTA FE Sunday October 2 2005 The Wests Oldest Newspaper Founded 1849 Robin M Martin Editor and Publisher Robert M McKinney Editor and Publisher 19492001 Will DeLay duck behind the Bible William W Waters Editorial Page Editor Robert Dean Managing Editor 202 E Marcy St Santa Fe 87501 States reps must stop publiclands abduction The assault on Americas public lands by Americans in Congress becomes more menacing And now the assailants taking a page from the book of terrorism have added hostagetaking to their repertoire The House Resources Committee headed by California Richard Pombo a Republican is compiling a list of budgetary actions involving our national parks It includes according to the Los Angeles Times selling some 15 nationalpark sites opening park publications to advertising and once again opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling No no no thats not true said a Pombo publicrelations guy rather those first two items are what the committee must con sider unless the Arctic refuge is opened to drilling We gotta find billion somewhere is the bogus pretext Just this sum mer Congress stayed its hand against ANWR in passing the energy bill But as conservationminded members were quick to warn the drillandgouge lobbyists and their Capitol lackeys would be back And here they are in black suits and stovepipe hats curling their mustaches and saying if you dont give us the deed to your ranch were tying you to the train tracks and I think I hear a No parks on Pombos list are in New Mexico but some are close Historic Fort Bowie is just over in eastern Arizona and the Alibates Flint Quarries arent far down the Canadian River in Texas For good measure theres a plot in the works to allow sales of park tracts as large as a square mile maybe in checker board form the way the government gave land to the railroads as incentive to come west Conservationists expect park employees to be under gag orders from their uh superiors but retirees from the National Park Service cant be intimidated and several hundred of them have banded to expose and oppose Pombos madness Two of our states three representatives could play key roles Pombo recently named fellow Republican Steve Pearce of Southern New Mexico to the chairmanship of the Subcommit tee on National Parks That subcommittee be the one taking preliminary action on any legislation Pombo proposes Pombo is leaning on Pearce to hold hearings during October on the 1916 law creating the National Park Service Among the Califomians aims a bill weakening the mandate to preserve unimpaired and boosting the use of snowmobiles allter niin vehicles and other motor vehicles Pearce is conservative but hes also a sensible guy He voles right often enough to please his constituency so he cm well afford to listen to the many Southern New Mexicans Democrat and Republican alike who arent in i hurry to sell nut she public birthright The oilier New Mexican on the committee is Santa Fc Democrat Tom Udall Even from his minority position Udnll might prove effective He should put his renowned reasonable ness and credibility to work on Ma Natures behalf Few com mittee members are as hellbent for environmental destruction is Pombo is Udall must restate to them his many good argu ments on behalf of preservation while reminding his Republi can counterparts that great numbers of their constituents draw the line at environmental depredation It wont be easy but we cant help thinking Americans are awakening to what Washington is doing lo us as taxpayers as consumers and as conservationconscious citizens Hie more our country hears about rulingparty plans for public property especially in the context of so many other schemes the wider awake the voting public is likely to be Count on Tom Udall to keep the alarm bells sounding and cheer him on with calls to his ofTice 202 2256190 in Wash ington and 9848950 here in town The past 100 years From The Santa Fe New Mexican October Santa Fe Mayor Art Trujillo has demanded that the Civil Aeronautics Board grant a federal subsidized air line route from Santa Fe to either Denver or Albuquerque The mayor in a letter to CAB said the city was guaranteed feder ally subsidized service by right of law and disagreed with a CAB suggestion that Santa Feans use Albuquerques airport for their essential airline service An essential airservice designa tion means the private airline will receive federal money for providing the service The curtain apparently has come Casablanca Santa Fes hottest nightspot on the Plaza for the past three years La Fonda owns the property and the canopy liquor license under which the club operates Alcohol Beverage Con trol Director Jim Baca said the club had been cited at least six times for serving minors We welcome your views Letters to the editor are among the bestread features of The New Mexican We do our best to get every opinion in the paper It doesnt have to agree with ours In fact the wider the variety of ideas on the Opinion page the better our read ers are served We try to run them in their turn Theyre all edited for language spelling and length To give all readers a chance to speak out we limit let ter submissions per individual to once a month Please limit your letters to 150 words Please print or type your name and give us your address and telephone numbers home and work so we can verify that you wrote it We keep numbers and addresses confidential Mail to Letters to the Editor The New Mexican 202 E Marcy Santa Fe 87501 Fax 9863040 Email firstname.lastname@example.org MOLLY WINS Creators Syndicate Jeez that was quite a hissy fit Tom DeLay had calling a rogue prosecutor a par tisan fanatic and an unabashed partisan zealot out for personal revenge Ronnie Earle Our very own mildmannered well lets be honest bland as toast eternally unexciting Mr Understate ment Old Vanilla Ronnie Earle District Attorney of Tra vis County If the rest of Tom DeLays defense is as accurate as his description of Ronnie Earle DeLay might as well have himself measured for a white jumpsuit right now For the onezillionth time of the 15 cases Ronnie Earle has brought against politicians over the years 12 of them were against Democrats Earle was so aggressive in going after corrupt Democrats the Republicans never even put up a candidate against him aH during the 80s Partisan is not a word anyone can honestly use about Ronnie Earle but that sure doesnt stop the TV blabbermouths So many of them have bought the Repub lican spin that Earle is on a par tisan witch hunt the watchdogs like Media Matters can hardly keep up On the other hand Ive never liked conspiracy charges They are notoriously weak and often just an addon when a prosecu tor wants to make someone look bad going in And hes been charged with six felonies Conspiracy as a standalone charge is particularly hard to prove without evidence of other concrete acts Was there a conspiracy to move corporate cash from DeLays federal PAC to influence Texas legislative races On the basis of what we have already known for months thats a Does a bear poop in the woods question But as all watchers of Law and Order know what anyone with com mon sense would conclude can be a long way from what can proved in a courtroom On the other hand Earle has Whenever he is really threatened DeLay plays the Jesus card and claims he is standing up for a Biblical worldview in everything I do and everywhere I already had one spectacular fail ure trying to prosecute a high profile Republican His 1993 case against Kay Bailey Hutchi son was a flameout The judge indicated in pretrial hearings he had doubts about the admissibil of Earles evidence so Earle withdrew the charges no point if he couldnt present his evidence The judge wasnt satisfied and directed the jury to acquit Hutchison Hutchison had an unbeatable legal team Dick DeGuerin and Mike Tigar For Earle this is a case of oncestung Speaking of the aforemen tioned Dick DeGuerin he is now defending Tom DeLay Want to know how good DeGuerin is One of his recent clients was Robert Durst heir to a New York realestate for tune who admitted killing and dismembering an unfortunate vie in Galveston Durst was a suspect in a California killing at the time and had moved to Galveston posing as a deafmute woman Durst jumped bail on the Galveston charge and was arrested in Pennsylvania for stealing a chicken sandwich while carrying two guns and DeGuerin got him acquitted on the murder charge on the grounds of selfdefense but they nailed him for the guns and tampering with evidence that would be dismembering the corpse They let him slide on the chicken sandwich charge I swear Im not making up any of this Thats how good Dick DeGuerin is If I were fool enough to give DeGuerin advice it would be Dont let DeLay on the The man just cant help himself hes just too mean he always pushes it that step too far like the cheap shot about Earle not coming to work unless theres a press conference on Ronnie Earle comes to work every day you can ask anyone at the Travis County That DeLay always takes things a step too far is apparent from his record This is the man who pushed President Clintons impeachment when every one knew it would end with acquittal He fixed his repeated troubles with the House ethics committee in typical fashion by going after the committee itself His bludgeoning style earned i him his nickname The Ham J Sometimes but not that many it is hard to tell the dif ference between playing politi cal hardball and operating with no moral compass whatever But in DeLays case we have a long record and what it is shows is that this is a man who has repeatedly crossed ethi r cal and legal lines and then claimed he was just playing a hardball politics and that anyone who complained about it was just a partisan whiner Whenever he is really threat ened DeLay plays the Jesus card and claims he is standing up for a Biblical worldview in everything I do and every where I Back in 2003 when DeLay was involved in a sleazy leg islative payoff to a big donor his press secretary offered this defense It is wrong and unethil cal to link legislative activities to campaign It 7 is precisely that upsidedown quality about DeLays bullet proof sense of moral rectitude that makes it so bizarre Sud r1 denly it is not wrong or unethi cal to try to slip an unrelated amendment to help a campaign donor into the defense appro priations bill its wrong and unethical to raise questions about it To tell the truth I dont think Tom DeLay is smart enough to keep getting away with this stuff Our country lacks disasterrelief coordination when a task requires those separate governments to work together there is no ready jorum in which they can meet DAVID BRODKR The Post However hapless he appeared at the con gressional hearing Tuesday on Hurricane Katrina former Federal Emergency Management Agency head Michael Brown was right about one thing The failure to respond to that disaster exposed one of the few real structural weak nesses in our Constitution a mechanism to coordinate the work of local state and national governments The federal system of divided power and responsi bility is one of the glories of the Founding Fathers work a scheme that has helped pre serve individual liberty and the flexibility needed to run a continentsized nation But when a task requires those separate governments to work together there is no ready forum in which they can meet This is a problem that urgently requires presidential attention Before the United States spends billion or billion or whatever the final bill may be there needs to be a coordinated federal response not a dictated Washington plan President Bush wisely has rejected calls to appoint a Washington czar to issue orders to Gulf Coast officials But he has yet to enlist the ideas of the people who could make this a new model of federalstatelocal coopera tion Instead of repeating his fly ing photoops to the region he ought to be on the phone invit ing people to a summit on how to fill this gap in our constitu tional structure Who to invite Because the president is more comfortable with fellow Republicans Id start with someone he knows well a member of his own Cabinet Secretary of Health and Human Services Mike As governor of Utah and chairman of the National Gov ernors Association Leavitt was probably the most creative thinker on federalism issues among a talented cohort of state executives Next another man he knows well former Secretary of State Colin Powell Before he entered government Powell founded Americas Promise the largest consortium of faith based and secular nonprofit and private organizations working on urban and human service problems Those groups have a vital role to play in rebuilding New Orleans and the Gulf Coast Then Sen George Voi novich of Ohio unique in his background as mayor of Cleveland Cuyahoga County commissioner state legislator and governor When I talked to Voinovich this week he said the president should be in touch with all the organiza tions representing local and state governments Like the others hes yet to hear from the White House As it happens the president could reach all those groups through another Republican Rep Michael Turner of Ohio the head of the House speak ers urban working group Turner the former mayor of Dayton and his col leagues have enlisted a strong advisory panel including National Urban League presi dent and former New Orleans Mayor Marc Morial and have established liaison on a bipar tisan basis with all the major organizations public and pri vate with a stake in housing and economic development But Turner like the others has heard nothing yet from the White House Recently a presidential aide made a conference call to 220 groups brief ing them for an hour and answering questions about the response to Katrina and the preparations for Rita But participants said there was little opportunity or appetite for them to offer ideas If the president were smart hed invite Jack Kemp who is on Turners advisory panel and two other dynamic former housing and urban develop ment secretaries Carla Hills and Henry Cisneros to brain storm with him He should include Dick Moe the head of the National Trust for Historical Preserva tion who could remind him of the contributions that the craftsmen of New Orleans plasterers ironworkers and the rest can make to refur bishing their city If Bush wanted to make this effort really bipartisan he could also usefully tap the minds of Harry McPherson the wise old man of Lyndon Johnsons domestic staff and his new law partner Dick Gephardt who before he came to Congress was an energetic and imaginative alderman in New Orleans sister city on the Mississippi St Louis Bush definitely should call former Gov William Winter of Mississippi who helped found the University of Mis j sissippis Institute for Racial Reconciliation If Bush is serious about tack ling the problems of race and poverty a repository of knowl edge awaits him there and Winter is eager to help And finally he should call William H Gray III the Phil adelphia preacher and former congressman who for years headed the United Negro College Fund the group whose slogan famously man gled by Dan Quayle could well be paraphrased as advice to this president These minds are a terrible thing to 1 waste
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