Updated Friday, September 25, 2009. Check out the response made by California State Assemblyman Chuck DeVore and my response...
Has anybody heard of a "delta smelt"? If you watch Sean Hannity, you would know that this fish is part of Sean Hannity's pet project. In short, a conservative activist federal judge, who was appointed by President George H. W. Bush, had ordered water pumps be turned off for a period of time because of negative impacts on the fish, which happens to be endangered. It seems that Fox News got a hold of the story and is politicizing a state matter. This is an issue that regards California's water rights, as well as an endangered species, and despite Hannity's calls to turn the pumps back on, the pumps are on, but he fails to recognize that there is currently a drought.
What I find even more interesting then the audacity of the conservative talk show host to politicize a regional matter at the federal level, especially a decision that was made by a conservative judge more than two years ago, is the connections between this story and various other Fox News stories.
Sean Hannity picked up on this matter on May 8th, 2009. California State Assemblyman Chuck DeVore had written an article about the matter on none other then Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood website on May 3rd, 2009. In the article, DeVore oversimplifies the matter as nothing more then unproven science regarding the fish's population and the strict interpretation of the Endangered Species Act, which he calls the "lynchpin" of the entire matter. The article mostly focuses on actor/comedian Paul Rodriguez who has been outspoken about the situation, which he had stated on other occasions, because of the effect it is having on his family's community.
If you do not recognize the name Andrew Breitbart, or his website, you may recall that he was behind a couple other recent stories covered by Fox News. A few weeks ago, the same website, Big Hollywood, was responsible for breaking the supposed use of artists by the National Endowment for the Arts to create a propaganda wing of the White House, when concerned artist Patrick Courrielche came forward with a secretly taped teleconference with then communications director of the NEA. As a side note, it is interesting that looking into Patrick Courrielche, he is also involved in marketing and advertising, being president at Inform Ventures, and is a fan, according to his Facebook, of the Free To Choose Network, The Cato Institute, and the Libertarian Party.
Andrew Breitbart was also responsible for helping distribute the infamous ACORN videos produced by James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles, releasing the videos on his new website Big Government simultaneously and exclusively with Fox News, which I had thought interesting considering Glenn Beck's question as to why no other media station picked up on the story. As I had previously noted in other articles I had written, James O'Keefe had affectionately advocated the use of deceit to achieve conservative activist goals. In addition to being a conservative activist, he also stated that activists must be their own media and utilize independent media to propagate their own manufactured news, which he refers to as using tactics from the left. I am also reminded of Hannah Giles article in which she referred to Margaret Sanger as a "sex fiend" who founded an industry that murders thousands of babies every day.
Are these the people you want to get your news from?
It seems interesting that every time Breitbart or his websites mention something, Fox News jumps on the matter and politicizes it to the extreme, as we have seen with the constant ACORN coverage, their attack on various members of the administration, and their airing of a California water rights matter involving an endangered species, in which Paul Rodriguez boldly reminds us that "fish can’t vote".
As another side note, I was wondering... Paul Rodriguez was born in Mexico to migrant workers, and in previous televised appearances, he had said that his family was effected by the situation involving the delta smelt. I am curious as to what his mother's citizenship status is and if she is in the country illegally, and the amount of illegal immigrants the local farmers use to work their land. Maybe Paul Rodriguez should focus on filming Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2 then get involved in a situation that he has no bearings on, and the same goes for Sean Hannity and the rest of the gang at Fox News.
You claim I oversimplify the matter of California water and it being shut off by a federal judge's order. Interesting claim, given that I've represented about 500,000 people in California for five years in the state legislature while you live about 3,000 miles away. I understand the situation and the legal issues quite well. Bottom line: the Endangered Species Act has no common sense flexibility and has resulted in 40% unemployment in some California counties with the attendant deaths of large numbers of fruit and nut trees.ReplyDelete
California State Assemblyman
Candidate for United States Senate, 2010
The Department of Water Resources has acknowledged that drought, not the Endangered Species Act (and any associated common sense inflexibility), is the cause of low water allocations, so by that same logic, drought is the cause of the 40% unemployment rate in certain agricultural counties. Although I am 3000 miles away, I can still research information, and I don't mean watching propagandized television used to stir up political resentment.ReplyDelete
Perhaps overspecialization could be to blame for the unemployment rate, but as the McEwen article from the Fresno Bee points out, the matter is complicated, and is the result of years of federal subsidies and incentives, without knowing the long term consequences.
In my opinion, to simply turn the pumps back on would be the equivalent of standing in a hole and digging one's self deeper. Although I acknowledge I may not be an expert on the situation, I do not agree with the "us or the fish" argument, and that as Americans, we should learn to live responsibly on our land, and the current situation is a result from us not.
What are the solutions? Filters? New irrigation channels? I am not sure but I am interested in seeing the resolution of the matter. I respect your service to the people of California in the State Legislature, but I find your answer to be nothing more than a populist knee jerk reaction, using the smelt issue as a campaign booster.