24 September 2006

Glenn Grothman: still wrong on snakes and herbicides.

Hi folks,

And just when I thought we'd have to forgo my complaining about Glenn this week, his column appeared in the West Bend Express News (Sunday, Sept 23, 2006 vol 4, issue 39 p.7).

Glenn is long on opinion but the facts, as usual, get in the way.

He starts like this.

"Today we will focus on a lack of common sense in environmental issues."
Politicians usually only appeal to "common sense" when they want something like candy; things they can't -- or shouldn't -- have.

I'll only mention the first two. These should be eerily familiar by now.

"If you expand your business in our area and are near any wetlands, the Department of Natural Resources will require you to look out for a supposedly threatened snake called the Butler's garter snake."
I suppose the Butler's gartersnake is "supposedly threatened" only if you believe what the scientists at the DNR say, although, stranger still, I've started getting email from scientists in other states who ask if Glenn is a shill for land developers or an idiot. It's getting harder to answer this question fairly.

Glenn notes, quite rightly, that the snake is found in a number of other locations and suggests, as far as I can tell here, that it would, therefore, be quite all right to keep destroying their habitat if it means an athletic field for the Timberwolves at Living Word Lutheran HS.

The garter snakes, alas, cannot be expected to rent a truck and move over to the Cedarburg Bog or Jackson Marsh, so you end up killing them locally. Their job in the ecosystem is local, just like Glenn's. Fortunately, if he keeps this up he'll destroy his political habitat first.

And 2)
"Wisconsin's regulatory agencies tried to regulate this product allowing half as much as Minnesota without even doing a peer-reviewed study. At the request of the Farm Bureau and the Pork Producers, we have derailed this new imposition."

Here he tip-toes around the critical details I mentioned in an earlier posting. Specifically: a) that the DNR only wants some standards set and that b), Glenn wanted to let Monsanto, the producer, do the "peer-review "testing.

Um... how is that a "peer-review"? and what part of "fox in the hen house" gets by you on this?

He also leaves out that fascinating detail that the break-down products from this stuff have already been found in 28% of the randomly tested wells state wide --presumably not in Glenn's.

Look, none of this is rocket science.
  1. You don't step on Superman's cape,
  2. you don't spit in the wind, and
  3. you don't ask the fox to guard the hen house, especially when
  4. the chickens have hired you to keep the foxes from using them for BBQ.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Glenn Grothman has made very few correct statements (at least publicly) about the Butler's Gartersnake. As a herpetologists and doctoral candidate in Wildlife ecology at the University of Wisconsin-Milwauke, I can safely say that this snake IS exceedingly rare in Wisconsin. Grothman and his supporters have nothing but anecdotal observations and hearsay from completely unqualified individuals as their "evidence" regarding how common they want us all to think this species is.

PLEASE email the following people TODAY(especially if you are in their districts) and tell them that you DO NOT support the delisting of this species and that decisions about a Threatened species status should be left to qualified individuals and not those who stand to make money off of their status repeal. The next hearing on the topic will be held tommorrow (Sept 27th) at 10 am.

Should this species be delisted, it will be the first time (nationally) in the history of the Endangered Species Act that an animal has been delisted for purely political reasons (and not because scientific evidence was driving the decision).

Representative Donald Friske (R-Merrill)
(608) 266-7694 Capitol 312 North

Representative Daniel LeMahieu (R-Oostburg)
(608) 266-9175 Capitol 17 North

Senator Tom Reynolds (R-West Allis)
(608) 266-2512 Capitol 306 South

Senator Glenn Grothman (R-West Bend) c/o Jolene Churchill
(608) 266-7513 Capitol 20 South

Senator Mark Miller (D-Monona) sen.miller@legis.state.wi.us
(608) 266-9170 Capitol 106 South

Senator Robert Jauch (D-Poplar) sen.jauch@legis.state.wi.us
(608) 266-3510 Capitol 130 South

Representative Marlin Schneider (D-Wisconsin Rapids)
(608) 266-0215 Capitol 204 North
Representative Spencer Black (D-Madison)
(608) 266-7521 Capitol 210 North

Representative Debi Towns (R-Janesville)
(608) 266-9650 Capitol 302 North

Senator Cathy Stepp (R Sturtevandt)

(608) 266-1832 Capitol 7 South