The Politics of Forestry- was- Re: State Forestry

Don Staples dstaples at livingston.net
Sun Jan 4 21:53:43 EST 1998


Larry Caldwell wrote:
> 
> The extension agents and service foresters might be giving the small tract
> owners what they want.  With all due respect to Massachusetts tree hugging
> hippie capitalist foresters, I might hire a forester to manage a timber
> sale, but I'm not going to hire one to manage my life.  I'm not sure that
> consulting foresters are in the same game that service foresters and
> extension agents are in.
> 
> -- Larry

A very good post, I dont agree with some of it, but so it goes. 
Consulting foresters are not in the same game as the others, well, not
all of us, some, like Joe (I take liberties to speak for him he's on
vacation, sabatical, head trip, what ever, and this string will be gone
by the time he comes back (love ya bear!)) are self declared
watermelons, eco on the outside and what is supposed to be socialist on
the inside, I.E., looking after the common good of allman kind. (Damn, I
love a soap box!).  In fact most foresters are green on the outside,
with demands for their abilities controlling how they use their
knowledge of the environment.  Service and extension foresters are there
to educate, do missionary work as Joe says.  The legislation that
created the Texas Forest Service specifically draws out what a service
forester will carry in his truck to assist in his teaching chore, I
think most state agencies started that way, sliped into the service
mode, found a profit, and don't want to get out while they are still
competing with consultants from a tax supported base, my taxes,by the
way.  Thereby the rift between some consultants and the agencies.

Many agency foresters compeat directly with us as moon lighters,
supposedly working on the weekends and nights, yea, right.  Some states
accept and encourage this practice, while paying their people minimum
wages for a professional.  All from a tax base, easy to be competitive
on a timber sale when you know your going to get a pay check regardless
of what you charge for the work.

But, consulting foresters are like any profession, there are some that
can, some that will, and some in it for the money.  I love my work, I
love the woods, the bigger and better the better.  I manage tracts for
private and corporate types for the long run, and I'll clear cut when
they ask, if I cannot talk them out of it.  I was a service forester for
13 years, with the state.  I competed then with the
consultants,legitamately, and don't want them competing with me now, in
any fashion.

Tax supported structures are not designed to compeat on the open
market,they are there to serve and serve only, if they want to be a
consultant, turn in all that "free" equipment, truck, office, secretary,
computer, telephones, radios, and come out on the ground with us the
same way we did.  Most wont survive.  It is hard, often unproductive
work.  

And talk to your forester, we are not all alike, most of us are very
similar in where we came from, and where we want to go, but different
strokes, folks, different strokes.  
-- 
Don Staples

My Ego Stroke:  http://www.livingston.net/dstaples/



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