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Counties in Crisis Recap

On Wed., Sept. 24th 2014, Shoshone County presented a forum of distinguished speakers on the topic of federal vs. local control of our forests. Speakers of varied backgrounds documented the slow but inevitable demise of our logging communities. The catastrophic loss of our individual, local, and state property rights have brought us to where we are now… “Counties in Crisis.”
The sociological, educational and legislative history of our logging industry describes the past and present health of our state. When our generational logging industry began to fail, so did the financial and moral integrity of our state begin its downward spiral.
The rural nature of Idaho attracted intact, hardworking family units. Generations of tight knit logging families sustained themselves with pride and community cohesiveness. Strong families reaped financial security. Creative entrepreneurs attracted more industry and a growing tax base for schools. Private life was good; Idaho and her families prospered.
Meanwhile, back in Washington D.C., our state wealth became thought of as a federal necessity and a permanent source of revenue. Slowly, and unperceptively to most, our state legislators gave into the demands and handouts of the federal government. Before the people of Idaho realized it we had not only lost many of our generational logging skills and private forests, but the moral ethics of hard work that went along with those families. Today, futile attempts to sustain towns with tourist industry have largely failed. Along with the mining and forestry, even the tourist industry has been restricted by increased government law and regulation.
And how did we the people get to this point where it’s “not without a fight?” Quite simply, we failed to educate ourselves as to our unalienable right to property. Therefore, as an uneducated electorate, we are on the verge of losing our sustainable lifestyle and therefore our liberty.
Let your legislature know that we the people are awake. We are ready to defend our freedom with our words and, if necessary, with our lives. Encourage us, educate us by example. But most of all, pray we all once again become a God-fearing productive nation.
Rachael Johnson,
Farmer and Write-In Candidate for County Commissioner District 1

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