Mother Jones on Oregon’s Timber Unity

The Oregon GOP’s Favorite Anti-Environment Group Is Awash in Racism and Violent Threats

Timber Unity is linked to neofascist and militia organizations—and once again, it’s gotten its way via a legislative walkout.

By Rebecca Leber and Ali Breland

Read the full story in Mother Jones

 

18 thoughts on “Mother Jones on Oregon’s Timber Unity”

  1. Hmm. working class people with concerns, can’t accuse them of being corrupted by corporate interests, so they must be neofascists! Why can’t we just accept their concerns at face value?

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  2. I agree with Sharon.
    The cap and trade bill proposed by Oregon’s governor would seriously endanger their ability to make a living. Seems like the small businesses, farmers, fishermen, loggers, millworkers , who produce products from our natural resources, are always the target. The urbanites get to keep on doing, right along with mega corporations.
    I know a lot these people personality, and they are neither neofascist or members of any militia, They are hard working, concerned people, who are providing products for our country.

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  3. Some posts do a good job of revealing who the extraction apologists are.

    The bill actually hits urban residents harder than rural residents. Rural areas are exempt from the requirement that fuel suppliers must buy carbon allowances.

    The article does not accuse every supporter of Timber Unity of supporting neofascist militias, but the movement does appear to tolerate and embrace them. Some may even be in leadership positions.

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    • I don’t believe in using toilet paper, living in a wood house, using propane to heat, eating food grown by others, and so on, and dishonoring the people who work to bring those good things to me. I am thankful to all of them and I’m glad they’re doing it and making enough money at it to live on. If that makes me an extraction apologist, I guess I am.

      Anyway…
      I thought the rural residents’ concern was about a gas tax as per this article in Healthy Forests Healthy Communities.
      https://healthyforests.org/2019/07/the-power-of-timberunity/

      “All consumers would pay higher energy costs, including an immediate 22 cents per gallon fuel increase in 2021, a cost that balloons to $3 a gallon by 2050. Energy-dependent small businesses, including small logging and trucking operations that already operate on slim margins would be threatened.”

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      • One might say that not taking strong action on climate change or to reduce consumption of fossil fuels is “dishonoring” all people (no matter their zip code) and also dishonoring god’s creation and all of god’s creatures. But maybe not.

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        • This is off topic, but I suggest that devoting so much effort and funding to reducing GHGs, while spending too little on helping/encouraging the world’s population become more resilient to disturbances and the health risks they face now and will face in the future, regardless of GHG emissions and their effects, is the moral issue of our time.

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          • For whatever it’s worth, I do believe that people and organizations that support efforts to reduce greenhouse gases and focus on a just transition towards renewable energy and a much more sustainable future also do support efforts to help and encourage the world’s (huge and growing) human population to become more resilient to disturbances and the health risks they face now and will face in the future.

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            • That hits the nail on the head. I see little ” focus on increasing the resilience of vulnerable societies to damaging climate events that … will occur regardless of efforts to mitigate emissions,” while so much talk, planning, media coverage, and punditry is aimed at GHGs reductions.

              The World Health Organization (WHO) “estimates indoor air pollution was linked to 4.3 million deaths in 2012 in households cooking over coal, wood, and biomass stoves.” , March 25, 2014, http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2014/air-pollution/en/.

              Also in 2014, WHO estimated that, between 2030 and 2050, climate change is expected to cause approximately 250,000 additional deaths per year, from malnutrition, malaria, diarrhoea, and heat stress. Areas with weak health infrastructure – mostly in developing countries – will be the least able to cope without assistance to prepare and respond.

              A relatively small effort to reduce indoor air pollution would be far more effective in terms of human lives than much larger and more expensive GHG reduction programs. What’s more, fuelwood harvesting is one the the top threats to forests and woodlands. More-efficient and cleaner-burning stoves would help solve these problems. See “Stoves cook up relief for Ethiopia’s forests, climate,” Center for International Forestry Research, tinyurl.com/m63gp5d.

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              • I was the Anon. poster — sorry, forgot to add my name. A followup link:

                “The world is in great danger of spending scarce resources on climate policies that hurt rather than help its poorest people. Governments should instead focus on growth-enhancing measures such as trade liberalization, which provide a pathway to increased welfare and greater equality.” — “How Climate Policies Hurt the Poor” By Bjørn Lomborg, Sept. 26, 2019, tinyurl.com/rom5bsy

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                • I thought growth-induced carbon production was a big part of the climate problem. And the way it has been done in this country (by the corporations for the corporations, including trade liberalization) has made us one of the most unequal developed nations in the world.

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        • But that’s precisely it. Making sacrifices for the public good clearly has winners and losers. Suppose they disallowed wine and beer production because it’s a waste of energy and people could drink water with fewer inputs. And marijuana should be re-illegalized because it uses energy and pesticides and isn’t essential.

          Or shutting down plane travel because “you can visit/do business as well via Facetime” and it uses less carbon?

          I think the question is who exactly is supposed to take strong action, who is inconvenienced, versus put out of business. Another question is if you are going to tax things, are you taking money out of someone’s pocket and putting it into someone else’s, and to what end? If loggers can’t afford their heating bills, but there is more money going to social justice not-for- profits, is that really social justice?

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          • Seems like this news below belongs right here. It’s a form of socialism, but for Trump’s Big Oil Buddies!

            Could anything be more Trumpian and modern-day Republican than fighting against Medicare For All, paid sick leave for American workers, raising the federal minimum wage from $7.25/hour while using Coronavirus as an excuse to bail out the fracking industry?

            See: https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/03/10/trump-oil-bailout/

            White House likely to pursue federal aid for shale companies hit by oil shock, coronavirus downturn

            But the idea could face resistance from those who support direct aid to workers. One critic called the idea ‘absurd.’

            The White House is strongly considering pushing federal assistance for oil and natural gas producers hit by plummeting oil prices amid the coronavirus outbreak, as industry officials close to the administration clamor for help, according to four people familiar with internal deliberations….

            One of the companies hardest hit was Continental Resources, founded by Harold Hamm, a Trump supporter and an adviser to the president on energy issues. It lost more than half of its market value Monday, though it recovered about 8 percent by midday Tuesday. Hamm’s 77 percent personal stake in the company lost $2 billion of its value Monday.

            Hamm said in an interview Tuesday he had reached out to the administration but had not made “direct” contact. He said that the administration should consider using laws on illegal dumping to prevent Russia and Saudi Arabia from slashing prices of oil sold in the United States.

            Hamm said the administration should consider “any action that the administration might take to protect and preserve American interests at this time from being unfairly disadvantaged by whatever government — and we’re talking governments here, whether it be Russia or Saudi Arabia.”

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            • Low oil prices are good for many people in the US, but there’s a tension between that and losing our own capacity due to intentional flooding by international actors who are not our friends (interfering in elections, etc.). Folks who have made their career on the many versions of the Softwood Lumber Dispute might say we have previously done this even to our good friends- raised issues around dumping. Not so sure that Hamm would be doing his “duty” so to speak if he didn’t call this out and try to do something about it.

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              • I like how Trump’s “energy dominance” has made us (or at least the stock market) more like a boom and bust third world country.

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            • “Working class” Americans have the most to gain, or loose, from this. Another pretty clear example of how one political party in American never misses a chance to stick it to “working class” people.

              Senate GOP Blocks Emergency Paid Sick Leave Bill From Moving Forward

              Democrats hoping to pass an emergency paid sick leave bill to deal with the fallout from the coronavirus were stymied by Senate Republicans on Wednesday.

              Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) tried to speed the measure up for a vote on the Senate floor through a procedural maneuver, but an objection from Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) prevented the bill from bypassing the Republican-controlled health committee.

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    • We also can see that both extremes are fond of their binary thinking and “you’re either with us, or against us” mindset. Sadly, these extremes seem to be growing in size, despite the wide availability of facts that reside somewhere in the middle.

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