[saf-news] NASF Responds

Joseph Zorzin redoak at forestmeister.com
Thu Sep 7 05:09:56 EST 2000

Jen Patterson wrote:

> Dear Freinds:

You misspelled "Friends". <G>

> Recently, Joe Zorzin, a consulting forester in Massachusetts, has posted
> several messages that have been harshly critical of the National
> Association of State Foresters and several of our programs and positions.

Awe, are the Chiefs all upset about that? Awe, shucks, sorry if I hurt their feelings. Are they
pouting in their wig-wams? <G>

> Mr. Zorzin has written us directly as well.  We invite you to visit our
> website (http://www.stateforesters.org) and decide for yourself.

Heck, most SAFers will love that site- since the policy statements on both web sites are virtually

> We firmlybelieve that the Stewardship Program and the various incentive
> programs
> that help private landowners to implement sound forest management help
> advance the practice of forestry nationwide.

They help a little bit, a VERY little bit. That's not the point.

> A recent study conducted by
> Dr. Richard Esseks and Dr. Robert Moulton

Oh, wow, forestry doctors! Then it must be the truth! <G>

> found that almost two thirds of
> the landowners enrolled in the Forest Stewardship program had no previous
> professional forest management advice.

Big deal, what's that prove? I find a landowner, I convince him of the wonders of forestry. If the
Stewardship program didn't exist, what real difference would it make? Very, very, very little. I'd
still do a mgt. plan, I'd still do silviculture. So, what really gets added by the Stewardship
program? Other than my plans now look a little fancier- and that a new army of forestry bureaucrats
exist in every state.

> You can find the whole paper by
> Esseks and Moulton at the following site
> www.rtp.srs.fs.fed.us/econ/pubs/jde001.htm

That report says, "It was found that the majority of program participants had never before received
professional assistance in managing their lands" That's utterly lame. That implies, without proof,
that without the SIP program, those landowners would not be doing forestry now. That's a non
sequitor. As I explained above, I and other consultants have been finding these landowners for
decades and doing plans for them and doing silviculture for them and we would have continued this
way, with or without this expensive SIP program.

It also says, "that owners were significantly more likely to start to implement their plans, to
manage for multiple resource outputs, and to adopt new practices when they also received either
follow up planning assistance or cost sharing for practice installation". Well, I guess that Jen and
the Chiefs didn't read my rant (see it now immortalized at
http://forestmeister.com/global-online-essays/chiefs.html)- where I point out that we did just fine
before SIP, because we had the ancient FIP and ACP programs, run out of offices that existed for
other purposes (helping farmers). There is no reason why those old programs couldn't have continued.
But noooooo..... they just had to create entire new offices in every state. And, those offices just
happen to eat up most of the funds. The real irony of course is that the head of the Mass. SIP
office isn't a forester.

In the old days, the FIP and ACP practices didn't help pay for mgt. plans, but they did help pay for
REAL FORESTRY practices, like TSI and pruning, etc. Now, here in Massachusetts, we get money for
plans, but no money for REAL forestry. Our honchos are happy though because they see all this new
paper work. Management plans filling up their filing cabinets, and we all know what THAT means-
expanding filing cabinets mean getting your burro job ENTRENCHED! <G>

We foresters in Mass. were producing mgt. plans faster back then than now. Our very own Mass. burros
recently mentioned that there has been a slow down in the growth of property under the state Chapter
61 Forest Tax program- for which most landowners file Stewardship plans.

SIP hasn't added anything we didn't already have, except a costly SIP office which now devours the
money that otherwise could help forest owners actually get WORK done in the forest. But, our honchos
consider all those fat file cabinets to be a measure of their success, not REAL forestry in the
forests of all things, to be done be REAL foresters.

> As to Zorzin's charges regarding the Stewardship Incentives Program, he
> misinterprets our resolution quite badly.

Nonsense. I'm not talking about any resolution, but the reality of the Stewardship program.

> Cash incentives to landowners
> have proven effective at getting them to undertake practices they would not
> normally do.

No kidding. And what good does it do us when so much of the money gets devoured by the SIP offices?
Oh, that's right, such a consideration is BEYOND the intellectual capability of any bureaucracy,
including the NASF's own little burros. <G>

And, of course, this concept that forestry must be subsidized is part and parcel of the huge scam of
forestry in America. The only thing really being subsidized is vast numbers of forestry jobs in
government, which produce nothing. Billions wasted due to this idea that forestry must be
subsidized- the SOVIET mentality. Remember, the Soviets believed and many Russians still do believe
their large industries should be subsidized- which is why the Soviet Union collapsed.

> We feel strongly that such incentives should be available to
> non-industrial private forest landowners.

Sure, if you want to offer money, be my guest. <G> But not at the expense of the SIP offices getting
most of that money. In Massachusetts there has been NO money for TSI or pruning work EVER SINCE SIP
came into existence, yet it was easy to get that money before SIP. Meanwhile, the SIP office has
spent a million bucks in this state paying for itself! With that money I could have done TSI work on
10,000 acres, but nooooo.... doing so wouldn't have been considered as valuable to the cause of
forestry as a couple more tons of filing cabinets full of more paper work. Of course the state
doesn't believe in TSI work, NEVER having done any on their 350,000 acres with their platoon of
foresters. Man a day I've seem them hanging around their offices- and I always had the compunction
to put a chainsaw in their hands and say, "get thee hither to the forest and earn your bread". <G>

> This opinion stems from our
> experience with programs such as the Forestry Incentives Program, the
> Conservation Reserve Program, and the Stewardship Incentives Program.

Right, and you all live in a psychotic delusion. You need to go out and experience reality for once.

There is that old saying that money doesn't grow on trees. Actually, of course, it does. But you
have to actually make the forest produce to do so. So much of this forestry "profession" instead of
getting forests to produce, they've found that the best source of wealth is the taxpayers- through
milking the USFS and many state lands- and be creating new bureaucracies. So much of this profession
is on welfare that no wonder the mind set is so deviant, so unproductive, so reactionary, again,
just like the Soviets- who were also not famous for a work ethic- thinking that forestry wealth
comes from the taxpayer instead of growing on trees.

> Mr. Zorzin is certainly entitled to his opinion,

Gee, thanks. <G> I'm glad to know that you haven't taken away my first amendment rights.

> but as a national
> organization that works very hard to promote the practice of forestry at
> the National level,

And fails.

> and which supports programs and policies which support
> forest management and the use of professional foresters, we feel strongly
> that we are doing the right thing.

But you're not. Your failing. But of course you don't care to hear that. In the private sector, if
you fail, you go out of business. But when you have a Soviet style racket, you can fail for a
hundred years and still get your pension. What a scam. Perhaps you should pay more attention to what
foresters who survive in the real world have to say, and not gloat because a couple of forestry
"doctors" pat you on the back. That is psychotic indeed.

And, before I forget, Jen Patterson, my biggest complaint in my rant is that the NASF called for an
increase in staffs for those SIP offices! I didn't see any call to increase actual work in the
woods. Noooooo........

I think I heard Zippy the Pinhead saying, "increase staff, increase staff, increase staff- to
increase forestry- increase staff- more money from the taxpayers- more money, more money- is
forestry- welfare is forestry- welfare, welfare, subsidies, forestry, forestry, SAF, SAF, Chiefs,
Chiefs, Heil to the Chiefs". <G>

Discussing this with Karl Davies on the phone last night, he offered the following suggestions:

     If they want to prove they're really serious about "promoting the practice of forestry"
     they should do the following.


     Publish truth about forest volume and value growth rates.

     Get all SFs to retract disinformation published in the past on these subjects.  Same for

     Subsidize long-term practices like non-commercial TSI and pruning if you want, but only
     through FSA offices.

     Eliminate all service foresters and all SIP foresters.

     Turn all state and federal forests into demonstrations of sustainable, profitable
     eco-forestry.  Audit state operations.  If current managers can't hack it, turn lands over
     to public trusts and/or consultants who can.  Publicize the results.

     Advocate real forester licensing such that licenses are required to file long-term
     management plans, short-term harvest plans, inventories and appraisals.

     Develop ways to pay landowners for ecosystem services provided.

Oh, Jen, be sure to forward my RANT to the entire NASF. I'm sure you must have an email list for the
Chiefs? I intend to build my own email list of all the Chiefs- but at this time the Chiefs' web site
is down. I know that all 50 have their email addresses there. I'll bomb them later. <G>

> Sincerely,
> Bill Imbergamo
> Executive Director,
> National Association of State Foresters

Joe  Zorzin
Massachusetts Licensed Eco Forester #261

My new high grading web site, a picture is worth 1,000 rants!

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