Here’s my original post:
Just wanted to say thanks for keeping me up on the Malheur travesty. As a BLM grazing lease holder for nearly 40 years here’s what I’ve experienced with the “tyrannical” agency.
1. BLM grazing is CHEAP. $1.69 an AUM for a month of grazing vs. over $20 for private grazing land. That’s for a cow and calf. For a month.
2. Just like any other lease there is a date on and a date off. Determined by the BLM based on factors like drought/wild horse use/pasture quality etc.
3. In drought years we are offered a “non-use” option and pay no fees at all. In this way we work together to ensure there will be grass left to grow when the rains do come.
4. Our local BLM has a small budget and has an unbelievably large area to oversee. Faced with a growing wild horse problem, we tackled fencing them out of our property on our own. Faced with a threatening allotment holder to our private property, again, no money for fence.
5. When we did fence, they were ecstatic. They offered us all the technical information they could. We once watched a range tech literally dance at the sight of healthy, vibrant Idaho fescue.
6. They protect the land from those who would destroy it, for fun or profit. When we sought to stop destructive driving across our land to get to the BLM for 4 wheeling, they cooperated and supported us, and gave the 4 wheelers another way to access the BLM.
Here at the Diamond E Ranch we feel it’s a privilege to live and work near a large piece of publicly owned land. A treasure we’ve been entrusted with by our fellow Americans. All of them. Our grazing lease allows us to participate in the care of that treasure, not for gain, but for the joy of our new grandchildren who will grow up roaming it like our children did. For the life of me I can’t see anything but profit in Ammon Bundy’s eyes.
[hat tip to Judy Liddell]