DEBATE OF '98- responsibilities of forest land owners

Don Baccus dhogaza at
Thu Apr 23 15:17:12 EST 1998

In article <6hnten$jvu$1 at>,  <mcour at> wrote:

>We can't fire the supreme court, but the balance of power could be shifted by
>adding new members.  If the people's president nominates and the
>people's senate confirms, the number could be raised to, say 21 members, and
>if the 12 new members could do anything they wanted.  This is all
>constitutionally valid and it was attempted once, but the liberal president
>could not get the senate to go along.

Ummm...the constitutional validity of this matter was hotly debated at
the time, and as far as I know has never been resolved in favor of
FDR.  The Senate didn't go along, and this avoided a constitutional
test.  Would the Supreme Court, too conservative for FDR's taste,
have agreed with his methodology for circumventing them?

Life would've been more interesting if the Senate had gone along with
FDR, no doubt, whether he'd won or lost...

>> Because if you destroy a wetland, that may cause flooding to someone
>> else on THEIR land or you may be contributing to the extinction of
>> species.
>The key word is _may_.  If it can be demonstrated that destroying the wetland
>will cause flooding for a neighbor or the demise of an endangered species,
>then one can argue the restrictions are acceptable under the "nuisance"
>doctrine which allows for restricting property use without compensation.
>However, under current wetland laws, I cannot reduce the amount of wetland on
>my property even if I prove that my proposed changes do not present a nuisance
>to anyone.

What is the constitutional arguement for agreeing that causing the
demise of an endangered species is a nuisance, while causing the demise
of individuals of an unendangered species is not?  I don't remember
that amendment.  The public owns ALL wildlife, and the government
has long asserted its right to protect wildlife, endangered or not.
The Migratory Bird Act comes to mind.

>> But I'll agree that wetland preservation has gone too far. I
>> can think of some swamps I'd like to drain. But it seems that currently,
>> every square of wetland is sacrosanct.   A reevaluation is needed.

>I agree.

Permits are let to drain wetlands daily, and there's really not much
evidence of slowing despite heightened awareness of the value of such


- Don Baccus, Portland OR <dhogaza at>
  Nature photos, on-line guides, at

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