Legal tactics directly from Center for Biological Diversity
Re: Recent petition from CBD to ban access and hunting on the MNP in the name of the Desert Tortoise.
To the Center for Biological Diversity, apparently this is all a game. The Center's upcoming series of petitions to end all human access to the 16 million acres of Desert Tortoise habitat here in California is just another sorry chapter in their quest to make the Forest and Fish & Wildlife Services look foolish at the expense of every other poor sorry uninformed and uninvolved average American.
From the Center for Biological Diversity:
The Center for Biological Diversity, based in Tucson, was founded by three ex-Forest Service workers, Peter Galvin, Kierán Suckling and Todd Shulke after they were fired in 1989. Their annual budget, derived from donations, is now about $6 million. To donors, their motives may appear altruistic. To the informed, they look more like a 20-year quest for revenge for their firing.
The Center ranks people second. By their accounting, all human endeavors, agriculture, clean water, energy, development, recreation, materials extraction, and all human access to any space, are subordinate to the habitat requirements of all the world's obscure animals and plants. But these selfish people don't care about any person plant, or animal. The Center collects obscure and unstudied species for a single purpose, specifically for use in their own genre of lawsuits. They measure their successes not by quality of life for man nor beast, but by counting wins in court like notches in the handle of a gun. They revealed their true goals and formula for legal success in a January 28, 2008 interview in the Tucson Citizen.
The Center's tactic exploits the Endangered Species Act requirement for speedy habitat designation. The lawsuits force the government to designate habitat before thorough study, sometimes before ANY study, and they are able to short-circuit normal, more thoughtful approaches to land and wildlife management. Then, the battery of lawyers who work for the Center for Biological Diversity get a good laugh at the expense of government officials and the public. They retire from the field. Users of the land are ambushed, left with no access to property, little legal recourse, and automatically face an uphill battle and a hefty bill in the appeals process. Any appeal must be filed against government, not the Center. The principals are left to fight it out in court while the instigators from the Center for Biological Diversity are nowhere in sight. As of the date of the article, the Center bragged they had sued government agencies 460 times, won 86% of them, and they are extremely proud to report that single-handedly they deplete the US Fish & Wildlife's entire annual budget, approximately $5 million, for endangered species listings year after year by forcing them to use their limited funds defending law suits instead of their intended purpose.
We take pride in the way we have "massacred government," according to Suckling.
To them, this is all a big game. By the looks of it they are now filing ~10 lawsuits per month. The California/F&G/MNP suit doesn't even make their list.
We shouldn't even have to discuss the total lack of any scientific link between coyote hunting and the decline of the desert tortoise. There is no connection. Coyotes eat tortoises, and that's a scientific fact with which even the CBD can't intelligently argue. Coyote hunters protect tortoises from predation.
You should be so thoroughly disgusted by the CBD's tactics, deceit, waste of tax dollars, and braggadocio, that their petition should be summarily dismissed immediately. Californians do not have the time, patience, or budget for this nonsense.
I strongly disagree with CBD. People first. Clean water. Food. Access. Building Products. Housing. Recreation. Energy. Common sense priorities and quality of life for the good of California. Let game managers manage game.
Gary is from Acton, CA.