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    Emptying the countryside

    Emptying the countryside

    Fascinating account of how new environmental regulations and restoration projects are emptying the northern California countryside, Rural rebellion brewing:

    Sacramento is Government Central, a land of overly pensioned bureaucrats and restaurant discounts for state workers. But way up in the North State, one finds a small but hard-edged rural populace that views state and federal officials as the main obstacles to their quality of life.

    Their latest battle is to stop destruction of four hydroelectric dams along the Klamath River – an action driven by environmentalists and the Obama administration. Most locals say the dam-busting will undermine their property rights and ruin the local farming and ranch economy, which is all that’s left since environmental regulators destroyed the logging and mining industries.

    These used to be wealthy resource-based economies, but now many of the towns are drying up, with revenue to local governments evaporating. Unemployment rates are in the 20-percent-and-higher range. Nearly 79 percent of the county’s voters in a recent advisory initiative opposed the dam removal, but that isn’t stopping the authorities from blasting the dams anyway.

    These rural folks, living in the shadow of the majestic Mount Shasta, believe that they are being driven away so that their communities can essentially go back to the wild, to conform to a modern environmentalist ethos that puts wildlands above humanity.

    This account reminds me of Victor Davis Hanson’s narrative of rural areas of central California, first world cities surrounded by economically devasted countryside.

    It’s a reverse of what happened when the communists took over Southeast Asia, and the cities were depopulated as a political strategy.  Here, the political strategy is to depopulate the countryside, and drive everyone into politically correct cities.


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    turfmann | October 30, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Where, exactly, do these environazis think that their food is going to come from?

    On the one hand, they are destroying some of the most productive farming in the world while simultaneously throwing the door open for innumerable illegal immigrants.

    I have long been fascinated with the nazification of Germany in the wake of the First World War: how is it that an entire nation could suffer a mass psychosis of such biblical proportions and not stop itself from self-immolation?

    Now I know…

    Damn it.

      SoCA Conservative Mom in reply to turfmann. | October 30, 2011 at 7:03 pm

      Didn’t you know, every city dweller will have enough balcony space for their own mini-farm. If you are lucky, you will win the lottery for roof space, so you can have a couple chickens. That should be enough food for a family of 2… because you won’t be permitted to have children. If that doesn’t work, stream Soylent Green for tips on feeding the masses without any land for farming or raising livestock.

    MrMichael | October 30, 2011 at 9:35 pm

    We’ve narrowly averted this kind of action in the Seattle area. We had a 90/10 rule voted into effect by the voters of King County, the overwhelming majority of which live in Seattle, Bellevue and Redmond… all wealthy cities. The rest of the County is fairly large, a hair over 2,300 square miles. (Rhode Island: 1,200) The young, hip folks in the cities were concerned that we were growing too quickly, losing too much ‘greenspace’. So they voted in a law that said that if you lived in unincorporated King County, you could only build on 10% of your land, and develop 30%. A full 70% of your land had to remain ‘native’. That meant that it could not even be garden; if a tree fell, you had to replant the same type of tree.

    Fortunately, we got the law thrown out in Court as an unjust and uncompensated theft of land by the Gov’t… but it was a close one. We’ve tried to create a new County for years… that last time it was thwarted, the County Gov’t refused to count the signatures on the Ballot Initiative. Law says you have to have a certain number of certified signatures… turns out there’s no legal mandate for them to be certified. Yeah.

    The discontent of Northern California and Southern Oregon with their respective urban centers of Portland and Sacramento is long lived. Look up the History of the proposed 49th State: The State of Jefferson. Almost made it, probably WOULD have except the timing of the Imperial Japanese Navy…

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