Another key issue and another key concession from Obama. No we're not talking about the backpedaling on gay marriage or universal health care. This time it's Northwest salmon and steelhead that are getting the high hat from the Obama administration, which released its long-awaited Columbia River management plan on Tuesday. Turns out the new boss is the same as the old boss when it comes to balancing endangered fish runs and power production on the Columbia, where runs of ocean going fish are about 20 percent of their historical average and just a fraction of that when hatchery fish - scientifically proven to be genetically inferior and legally determined to be ineligible toward recovery efforts - are excluded. While dams remain the biggest obstacle to the fish's recovery, the administration has all but shelved the possibility of breaching the dams. Instead the "new" plan relies on a mix of habitat restoration and intelligent management of the dams to bolster recovery. Sound familiar? It's essentially the same plan that Dubya put forth numerous times under pressure from those with vested interests in maintaining the status quo. This, folks, is change we shouldn't believe in.
A conservative corporate-backed organization that connects lawmakers with industry insiders to craft ready made laws could lose its non-profit status that allows it to wine and dine lawmakers like Central Oregon’s Gene Whisnant.