Part II: Environmental Multilevel Marketing, or Lobbying 101
As Green multilevel marketing has expanded into Utah, Colorado, Oregon and Nevada, we see an ever-creeping web of bureaucratic power under the guise of protecting mother earth. By expanding the globalist web of deception via national monuments, the ideology spills onto Western terrain and seals up productive land, as well as smaller, legitimate antiquity landscapes, in one fell swoop.
Opinion by Janet Keeler Wilcox
Following the money trail of wealthy foundations is very troubling, as is learning how environmental special interest groups are funded. For example, William and Flora Hewlett, Wyss, Leonardo DiCaprio, and the Wilburforce Foundation all donate to environmental activists causes. Their donations, which are often tax exempt, go to the Conservation Lands Foundation (CLF), or to protectionist non-governmental organizations (NGO) such as Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA), Dine’ Bikeyah, Sierra Club, ad infinitum. Envision millions of dollars accumulating in those coffers, and you will see why land inside monuments has multiplied over the past eight years to 553 million acres! — who cares if the donors live lavishly, just as long as their money “protects” the environment! “They want a new Porsche, when the government can hardly afford a used Ford,” said Charlie Taylor, referring to the nation’s $20 Trillion debt.
Jim Stiles (Canyon Country Zephyr) described David Bonderman’s lavish lifestyle in an earlier article. “David Bonderman continues to be one of the “most extravagant environmentalists on the planet. He owns palaces in Moab, Utah and Aspen, Colorado; he resides frequently in his Gulfstream jet. For his 60th birthday, he celebrated in style, at the Bellagio in Vegas, with the Rolling Stones for entertainment. For his 70th, he hired Paul McCartney and John Fogarty. Each party cost between $6 and $10 million. To secure the Pavlovian loyalty of his adoring guests, he gave each of them $1000 to contribute to their ‘favorite cause.” True, those with money should be able to spend it on their preferred lifestyle, but when they espouse conservation and care of the planet, it seems they are only being “user friendly” when it fits their agenda.
Non-governmental organizations (NGO) also play a strong role in this environmental multi-marketing networking plan. The term NGO was first coined in 1945 when the United Nations (UN) was created. Today, NGO money (received from wealthy businessmen and corporations) flows like a river into beautifully crafted pro-monument videos playing on prime-time TV; then the river of wealth pours onto cookie-cutter environmental websites nationwide, with almost identical, repetitive messages. The green flow then soaks into the pockets of CEOs, pollsters, “consultants,” and play-makers for the liberal Left, and then, ironically, it sends streams of cash to promote tourism in the fragile landscape of Grand and San Juan counties. All the while, Bonderman, Wyss, and Hewlett portfolios continue to grow.
Recently, Conservation Lands Foundation’s (CLF) “Bears Ears Campaign” (part II) amped up. Worry that the Bears Ears Monument might be rescinded and states might have more control over public lands has caused the floodgates of Green money to open and paranoia and fear mongering to increase exponentially. Sensationalized headlines such as, “Rob Bishop Thinks Our Public Lands are Worthless,” or “Bears Ears opposition is about denying Native Americans a Victory,” scream at the unsuspecting and uninformed. Verging on yellow journalism, such extreme declarations are intentionally exaggerated and based upon ideological lobbying, not factual investigation. (Think of other MLM meetings you may have attended!) This scenario explains why Senator Mike Lee sees radical protectionist efforts as “a solution looking for a problem.”
Jami Bayles, the recently-elected president of Stewards of San Juan, stated, “A NGO should never — no matter how much foreign money it accepts — have the power to trump sovereign state rights, nor duly elected officials. No one in the Four Corners area voted for SUWA, CLF, or Grand Old Broads to be their representatives. Globalists and extreme environmental organizations which seek to weaken this republic, do not represent Utah, or San Juan County.”
Yet, “advancing strategic solutions” is the watchword of the Wilburforce Foundation. And currently their “solution” involves the massive 1.3 Million acre Bears Ears National Monument in Utah—a state which is already filled with 40+ National and State Parks and is 63% public land, which we all enjoy and love. Yet NGO minions demean locals, and decry Utah congressmen, claiming they do not value public land. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Wilburforce is one such non-government foundation and has funded Resource Legacy Fund. http://resourceslegacyfund.org/programs/bears-ears-fund/
One of their three pet projects is the ‘Bears Ears Community Engagement Fund,’ which provides grants for projects that, among other things, create “opportunities for sustainable recreation use and management by local communities.” In other words, they have elected themselves to fill the role of county/state/federal land managers.
Contrast this web of multilevel marketing to the “No Monument” grassroots effort in rural Utah. It has functioned without help from, or obligation to, wealthy NGOs and backers, using only the money they have raised through local benefits. Thus, when wealthy globalists secure more and more land via monuments and prevent multi-use in parts of local land, spending millions to do so, locals see it not only as immoral, but illegal and presumptuous. Locals decry the prospect of turning Bears Ears communities into Moab look-alikes.
Ironically, Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia at least partially agrees: “When you see the guides on the Bighorn, they’re all out of central casting. Beard, bill cap, buff around the neck, dog in the bow. . .It’s so predictable. That’s what magazines like ‘Outside’ are promoting. Everyone doing this ‘outdoor life style’ thing. It’s the death of the outdoors.”
When NGOs are held hostage by their donors, the hostages often become purveyors of donor messages, (i.e. Patty Hearst and the Stockholm syndrome). If the mantra of the donor is, “cattle free in ‘23,” then the recipient uses Wilburforce or Patagonia donations to advance that position. If corporate donors, who are often board members of environmental groups say, “Forbid the use of below ground resources,” (not knowing some of their corporate friends have ulterior motives) they respond like puppets, canting and chanting the dictated slogans. It is truly a “Monumental Multilevel Marketing” plan, top down, and all around!
Trying to eradicate ranching, farming, and extraction opportunities in the public domain, and replacing those economic drivers with ‘sustainable’ tourism, comes with a whole new set of problems. Promoting tourism in the name of ‘protection’ is an environmental paradox. Locals know from the experiences of those living in the shadows of Grand Staircase/Escalante that there is much to lose. Environmentalist NGOs are working to eliminate jobs, families, and lifestyles, not of the rich and famous, but of rural Americans. As Green MLM has expanded into Utah, Colorado, Oregon and Nevada, we see an ever-creeping web of bureaucratic power under the guise of protecting mother earth. By expanding the globalist web of deception via national monuments, the ideology spills onto Western terrain and seals up productive land, as well as smaller, legitimate antiquity landscapes, in one fell swoop. The “we won’t share” attitude on the parts of hard-core progressives has caused backlash and anger from those who believe less is more when it comes to government-layered public lands.
The Stewards of San Juan, and others opposing the excesses of federal overreach, support Utah’s Congressmen and San Juan County officials, who were elected by us to represent us, in their efforts to rescind the Bears Ears Monument, and we believe that pubic land should allow multiple-use.
Janet Keeler Wilcox is a retired school teacher and was co-founder of Blue Mountain Shadows, a regional history magazine. Her blog Beyond the Bears Ears keeps a running update of articles and events related to land issues, specifically those in San Juan County. She was raised on a dry farm near Ririe, Idaho. She’s a life-long conservationist.
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