Utah gets its public land back

With the stroke of a pen Presidents Clinton and Obama grabbed large parts of Utah and transferred them to the federal government.

With the stroke of a pen President Trump is giving Utah’s land back to the public.

CFACT’s Bonner Cohen and good friend Martha Boneta explain at The Daily Caller:

Under the Antiquities Act of 1906, only objects of historic or scientific interest are to be protected “within the smallest area compatible with the protection of those objects.” In keeping with the letter and spirit of the law, the first national monument, Devils Tower in Wyoming, was less than 1,200 acres.

Compare that size with Clinton’s Grand Staircase-Escalante designation, which covered 1.9 million acres or Obama’s Bear Ears designation, which came in at 1.35 million acres.  A law originally intended to protect Native American artifacts from plunder was transformed into an instrument to create de facto wilderness areas, with severe restrictions on land use and public access. Instead of safeguarding sacred tribal sites and archeological treasures, the law has been stretched to include protecting World War II bombing craters, “biodiversity,” “view sheds” and “remoteness.”

What’s more, under the Wilderness Act of 1963, only Congress has the power create wilderness areas, not the White House through executive fiat. By circumventing Congress on the Wilderness Act, and through twisting the wording of the Antiquities Act beyond recognition, Presidents Clinton, Obama and George W. Bush tightened the grip of the federal administrative state over the lives of ordinary Americans.

Patagonia, a corporation that sells outdoor recreational goods, is threatening to sue.

They’ve got it all wrong.

As CFACT’s Marc Morano explained on Fox, giving the people of Utah back their land means the public can now live, work and enjoy there once again, while ensuring that nature flourishes at the same time.

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About the Author: Craig Rucker

Craig Rucker is the executive director and co-founder of CFACT.

  • cshorey

    i.e. the U.S. public looses these lands, and private interests can move in and pave over a rich fossil and geology site. The Society of Vertebrate Paleontologists are suing over this move. The loss of rich Mesozoic fossil sites would be a real loss for future humanity trying to understand their past. And seeing as more fossil fuel extraction from these sites will exacerbate climate forcing, which is the real science that ideologically has to be denied to keep the CFACT narrative, this is a bad idea from most people’s perspective. CFACT ditto heads are definitely a minority in this world.

  • MichaelR

    This is extraordinary double speaking worthy of Big Brother.
    These lands were protected for the PUBLIC. They are now being sold off to the PRIVATE sector for exploitation.
    Characterising this as a win for the American people is so transparently a lie, yet here is, true to form, CFACT regurgitating it. Indeed, Trump was so impressed by one of the lobbyists for one of the uranium miners that wants to dig up Bears Ears, that he wants to appoint him as Scott Pruitt’s number 2.

    America, your country is being sold out from under you. Your tax system is being restructured to redistribute wealth from the poor and middle class to the very richest individuals and corporations. Your standards for honesty, decency, justice and opportunity are being flushed down the toilet with Trump, Bannon, Ryan and pals in charge. And here is CFACT cheering it on.