Kudos to the N&O for beating the NO OLF drum

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There's a great column in the News and Observer today by Laura Marciniak about the Navy's insane plan to build an outlying landing field in Washington County.

All that nice open land probably looks good from 10,000 feet in the air. The northeastern section of North Carolina is some of the last undeveloped land on the Eastern seaboard. You can see it yourself from Google Earth. But what you can't see from a plane or a satellite is what's taking place on the ground.

The family farmers and the birds of the wildlife refuges have a symbiotic relationship. The birds do more than eat the farmers' leavings of grain and corn. They also leave nitrogen for the next crop and they dine on insects and weeds. Good land stewardship should be rewarded, not betrayed.

In these days of heightened national security you don't hear much mention of one of America's most vital interests, our food supply. As we continue to export jobs and import food, I hope that we as a nation don't come to rue the day that we didn't stand up and protect some of our true American heroes -- our family farmers.

(Laura Marciniak is retired from the U.S. Air Force, where she worked on jet aircraft in Texas and South Korea and debriefed pilots on maintenance issues. She also has a degree in biology.)

Good for the N&O and editorial page editor Steve Ford for jumping into this issue with both feet. Too bad our so-called US Senators don't have the same concern for North Carolina that the newspaper does.

(Thanks for Unique for digging this one up and passing it along to me.)

Comments

Thanks, Stan

I think there's not much more to do at this point. I wish there were, but since our two Senators are useless partisan hacks, that avenue is pretty much closed.

The N&O

is now reporting that

PLYMOUTH — The director of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service arrived in North Carolina Monday and showed strong symbolic support from the agency's top tier for field biologists who have raised concerns about the Navy's plan to build a jet runway near a wildlife refuge.

Director Dale Hall point out what is obvious to everybody except the Navy and our sorry excuses for Senators.

"We have a national wildlife refuge whose purpose is to pull birds in," Hall said. His agency manages over 500 refuges nationwide. "The mission of the outlying landing field would be to push birds away. There is an inherent conflict."

Gee whiz! An inherent conflict? Who would have thought it?

HUGS and Kisses to Laura M

for this wonderful paper. How could anyone who cares about North Carolina ignore this article! It was fabulus.

XOXOXOOXOXOOXOXOXOOXOXOXOXOXOXOOXOXOXOXOOX
In the time of PC.........XOXOXOXOXOOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXO to Laura M!!!

It's About Time!

Is our infamous Senator finally getting off her (insert unPC words here) and doing something useful?

From today's N&O: Dole wants hearing

"In a letter to Secretary of the Navy Donald Winter, Dole said the outlying landing field has attracted attention across the state. There now are public hearings scheduled in eastern counties, but none in the middle or western part of the state.

"The Navy's proposed OLF has attracted the attention of residents from all corners of North Carolina," Dole wrote in her letter to Winter. She said a Charlotte location would be easily accessible for other residents. In an interview this month, Dole said she has "serious concerns" about the proposed landing field but will not intervene in the Navy's continuing site selection process."

Charlotte is good, Ms. Dole, but you stopped short. Hearings in Raleigh, Asheville, and Winston-Salem should also take place. Charlotte isn't easy access for everyone. This issue is too important to limit.

Come on, Ms. Dole. Do the right thing. edit, edit, edit, edit......

Thanks, Unique

You saved me the trouble of writing a new entry. I was going to highlight the same paragraphs you did, plus especially this sentence:

Dole said she has "serious concerns" about the proposed landing field but will not intervene in the Navy's continuing site selection process

Typical do-nothing Republican. Dole wants to hold some photo-op hearings, but she won't intervene. What a bunch of bullshit.

will

someone please kindly inform mrs dole that she cannot have her cake and eat it too?

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"

Run With It -

Hoist by her own petard - "Dole said she has "serious concerns" about the proposed landing field but will not intervene in the Navy's continuing site selection process."

If she says she will not intervene - in plain English that means she is able to intervene but she chooses not to.

Why not? Did you already pick out your homesite up there? Old vacation home getting shabby?

There is NO political reason not to refuse and everything to gain by refusing.

One good reason for not refusing - just one - and I'd quit poking her with verbal sticks on this issue. But there is no good reason. No, not one.

Good catch

in plain English that means she is able to intervene but she chooses not to.

Do-nothing habits for do-nothing Republicans are hard to break, I reckon.

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

Just read that

in the N&O. This article, right on the heels of yesterday's GREAT article (by Laura M.) reiterates the Fish & Wildlife's smackdown of the Navy's 'bird' plan, too.

I hope Dole does the right thing, I really do. But I think your edit comments about her actions are probably going to be even louder in a few months, if not weeks. That last sentence says it all; Dole "will not intervene in the Navy's continuing site selection process."

But she looks like she cares because ... she wants the Navy to hold hearings in the western part of the state. For what? If she's not going to get some spine and stand up and speak louder to the Navy as a United States Senator (the way her collegue in VA, Senator Warren stood up for his state), what the hell good does she think 'public hearings' in Western NC are going to do? Does she think she can stack a hearing in Charlotte with people who won't fuss too much about taking some scruffy farmland and scaring away a bunch of birds in the winter or what?

I do hope she does the right thing, but with that last line, I don't understand where the Senator is going with this.

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

I am actually scared

of what will be said at a public hearing outside this region.

The Navy has not presented a proper representation of what there plan is at this site, and to many folks who are not affected wont have a valid idea of the true impact of this proposal. Between the FEIS, DSEIS, and multiple suplimental reports, there is around 3,000+ pages if information to digest. And alot of this stuff is confussing to people who are around it alot.

Becuase this OLF is not directly impacting most residents west of US 17, to get people to stand up and say NO, would be a scary proposition.

I fear that she will receive more apathy to neutral to support for our troops in a war comments then knowledgeable opposition. With that, she will be able to say, "not doing anything and letting the Navy have their OLF site is what the people of NC want."

Those that would oppose this are already sending their letters and comments in and Im fearful that they would not showup at any hearing.

For this fight, I really feel these comment periods outside the affected region would be a bad thing for the pilots, residents and birds of the affected region as it will be used as a validation tool for Mrs. Dole.

The only way I would say this would be a good thing for Mrs. Dole to do is if she did a FOR and AGAINST paper outlining this proposal down to one page for each side to give the people an idea of what is going on.

With her not providing anything on this proposal, and then to shotgun comment periods around the state does not do any justice to either side of this issue.

Didn't You Hear -

Rick Martinez, Correspondent:

"About the only people in North Carolina who say they support the Navy's desire to build an outlying landing field (OLF) on 30,000 acres in Washington and Beaufort counties are five Havelock city commissioners and me."

I understand your concern - it's valid. The Navy employs BS artists ex·tra·or·di·naire. Their Day/Night composite dB ratings blow me away. What a way to manipulate numbers!

Still - I got this from my neighbor the other day, 'That's still happening? I thought that was dead.'

Uh huh. That's what *I* thought til Anglico brought it up.
There are some putzes out there who think it's a NIMBY issue but the people that count know better. We're on your side and we won't stop until this thing is dead forever and for real.

oh, BTW - I mentioned it to Congressman Etheridge's staffer today (calling on an AE for something else but...I wasn't going to let an opportunity slip by) So he knows, too. You know, a little ... 'about that line item in the budget...it wasn't supposed to be there you know. The judge ordered cease and desist until...since the budget came out BEFORE the SEIS - oh, look! The Navy defied the judge's orders - AGAIN.

excellent catch

going into my stack of paperwork to be turned in. Working on 70 pages of comments and concerns. Will drop about 20 more when i go to washington county site on the 4th.

Asked a ton of questions to!

A group of us went to the OLF hearing

in Bertie Co. last night.
One woman stood up and said that since 2003 they have had to deal with six different admirals calling the shots. There is absolutely no accountability for any of the Navy’s inane actions. Oh, and lets not forget…three Secretary’s of the Navy.
The Navy’s contractors were arrogant pricks. They are the ones who are paid BIG BUCKS by the Navy to destroy their fellow Americans and wildlife. They have all the answers on how they can kill the birds, bulldoze our homes, and make life unbearable for everyone living in the Albemarle/Pamlico Peninsula.
April 4 is the hearing in Washington Co. and will be held at the Vernon James Center in Roper. We need people to attend. The brainwashing session begins at 4:30, the public sham comment period starts at 7:00. You may sign up to speak for three minutes, or submit hand written comments. Please dress warm and bring a chair. You might have to wait outside before speaking as the building only holds 250 people.
Yes, Liddy Dole and Richard Burr are shaming us. Before the OLF issue is over, the nation will see Madame GOP Fundraiser allowing a “stilted sham of a process” destroy the last pristine region left on the east coast and silently stand by as her constituents are grounded in the dirt.

SOS

I signed up for the bus up there.

Anyone have a lap top I can borrow? I was planning on transcribing as fast as I can type. (Which is much faster than I can write)

But, Dang! Outside? People can't hear the whole nine yards?

They better pipe it outside if we can't all fit inside cuz I don't want to miss one lying word.

from 7pm till closing,

the navy will not be speaking, it will be the community and the citizens. So it wont be lies, but concerns and questions. The Navy JAG guys speaks for about 12 mins going over the ground rules, the way he speaks, u will need some coffee in you, as u will be put to sleep, then he turns it over to a Commander in the Navy who talks for about 3 minutes. If there are "lies" its more likely misunderstanding on someones part due to the inability of the Navy to explain this thing. How would you like to read a 1200 page document with 9 or so supporting documents each avg 160 pages? Not gonna happen.

After that, its time for the real people to start talking. the local government officials first go, then the local citizens, then the out of county folks go.

Its done on a signup basis. The first people their, get to talk first in that priority scheme. They stated that everyone who wishes to speak can speak so long as the building can stay open that long.

So if your coming to one of these hearings and wish to speak, that is whats in store for you. However, you will also beable to provide written comments there as well. So write, write write. Bring your kids and let them write something. Even if its in crayon and it says NO OLF, its valid.

And the crayon ones might actually be understood by the folks running this sham.

Do I Have to Sign Up Here

and present my questions in writing before I get there?

Or do I do it after I get there?

I think I've decided that if no one will answer me back about the bus, I'm gonna drive up there anyway. Sure wish I had a lap top though.

But if the Navy isn't speaking, who's answering the questions? Is this being taped or filmed or anything?

We need something for posterity.

Actually

starting at 7pm EVERYTHING said thru the microphone is recoreded on a video w/sound as well as a stenograph guy restating everything you say. Will these medimums be made available? I dont know, however, the transcripts will be made available in the finial supplemental environmental impact statement (FSEIS).

Do not sigh up at bluenc, they are not affiliated in any way with this process. you sigh up at the meeting place starting at 4:30 pm. Again, because you are out of county, all the county folks will be talking before you do, even if they show up at 6:55 pm and sigh in.

you do not have to pre-approve or preregister your questions or statements. Show up at the hearing and present them then.

You dont even need to have a statement made up before you get there, the Navy has pens and paper available for you to write comments on. They have a collection box to put them in.

If you dont wish to speak, then all you need to do is show up and put your comments in the box. binga banga, bomma, youve been counted and have been heard. you dont have to speak to drop comments off. you can drop a small book off of comments if you wish.

You can register to speak, and then not showup at the mic if you wish. dont know how that is counted.

The bottom line here is, the more people that show up in opposition of this thing, the harder it is going to be for liddy to say, ewwwwww, what a wonderful idea to ruin all these peopls lives for two squadrons to cherry point.

Also, just an aside, my statement earlier about cherry point getting the 2 squadrons is true, they are going to get them. when the the Navy is talking for their 3 or so minutes at the begining of this thing, they state 8 squadrons plus the training squadron to Oceana and two squadrons to cherry point. so mayor of havelock, you have your wish, you have your two squadrons. we have done nothing to take that away from you, so please tell your ACT to read the documents and allow us to get what we want.

How the Navy works "the process"

During the formal comment period (7:00 pm to 10:00 pm). The Navy just sits there, they do not respond to concerns or questions. You are called up, give your name, spell-it-out and the county you are from, then if you go over three minutes the Navy makes you abruptly stop. The concerns and questions are suppose to be evaluated and addressed but you will not know what the Navy has done with the comments until the Final SEIS comes out which is suppose to contain all comments, written and oral. The 2003 Final EIS had the comments listed with no answers or brush-off answers. That is the way the Navy works "the process."

During the informal walk-around information session (4:30 pm to 6:30 pm), the Navy and their paid cohorts, no matter what you say, will tell you why they are right and you are wrong. Get there for the information session, dealing with the Navy and their paid cohorts will get you fired up, and you will not be smiling.

How Odd

It worked in preview....

It said

the website declined to show this page. Do you have to sign in?

Nope.

I couldn't see it either when I tried it the second time.

Beats me.

OOO so very true

the contempt is just boggling. they talk so sweet until you start asking them real questions, then they want to get away from you, or make u get away from them.

If you like a good mental chess match, one, u wont get it here, two, you will blow these guys out of the water with any kind of intelegent communications. (gads, I wish I could spell, look how much of a dufis I look with me tryin to make an intelegent satement!)

None of these guys asked "did I answer your question or concern?" because they dont care if they did or did not.

Then I'll Have to Say

U:'Excuse me. But you didn't answer my question'

N: 'I'll have to get that information from my superiors'

U: 'Can I have that in writing?

N: 'Urk'

U: 'And your name is?'

U: 'And your Commander's name is?'

U: 'And when should I expect my response?'