Ode To State Senator Darwin Booher

Wednesday , 15, July 2015 Leave a comment

Darwin Booher’s newsletter arrived in the mail and there was no rejoicing. With Darwin Booher, the rule is the less you hear about him the better off Michigan’s 35th State Senate district is. Unfortunately, the Gods do not smile upon us, because Darwin Booher is still being Darwin Booher.

For example, the newsletter opens with the salutation, DEAR NEIGHBOR:

The economic stop signs and flashing red lights are fading fast. In fact, there are clear signals that Michigan is on the road to a strong economic recovery.

Apropos analogy for Michigan’s job growth, if anyone’s spent any time driving on Michigan’s roads lately. The economic recovery Booher gushes about is the fact that the state rose from 50th place to 49th place nationwide in job growth. The new jobs that Republicans are so proud of aren’t middle class jobs, but low-paying part time jobs that pay $10.00 an hour if you’re lucky; most are minimum wage. This means more Michiganians are going to need to supplement the income they work hard for with state assistance for food, housing, and medical care.

By working together, we can keep the momentum going and create an even better future, one that provides more opportunities for Michigan families.

Of course, those families won’t be able to afford a $48,000 BMW like the one Booher rode in for the Lake City 4th of July parade back in 2012. The “better” future is full of potholes for most Michiganians, much like our physical roads.

Booher also reprints an op-ed he and Senator Tom Casperson (R-Nature Hater) co-wrote about Senate bills 39 and 40. The Nerd last month signed both of these bills into law, and our public land now lies in jeopardy of disappearing. Senators Booher and Casperson hate nature, hate science, and hate the fact that there are so many trees growing in their districts in Northern Michigan that loggers can’t cut down and Casperson’s trucking business can’t haul them away at a profit. Too much public land! Why can’t more of it be private and making a profit? The new law now prohibits the DNR from purchasing more land unless they sell some. What Casperson and Booher want is for public land – land that belongs to the taxpayers of Michigan – to become privately owned land. Land that can be commercially exploited for profit.

According to the op-ed however, the impression is these bills will improve land management.

The bills are a starting point to improve land management, access and use opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts across the spectrum, including hunters, motorized users, bikers and others. Contrary to one of the many inaccurate assumptions about the bills or our intentions, we are not saying that all land must be open to all uses; we are saying that we should allow reasonable types of uses, including multiple uses.

Capping the amount of land the public owns and forcing the state to sell land into private ownership doesn’t sound much like improving land management, access and use opportunities. Private owners tend to put barriers around their land and post NO TRESPASSING signs to keep everyone else out. The inaccurate assumption that land is better off being owned privately rather than publicly, so the state can’t use stupid things like science and biodiversity to improve the health of public land. Booher and Casperson know the best land management plan is one based on economics. Booher’s bill, S-217, lowered taxes on privately owned forest land, so there’s less money to manage our public land anyway.

The short articles on how Booher is screwing over our kids’ education funding and road funding provided even more depressing news. Less for those who need it, more for those who don’t.

Darwin Booher, how is it possible that when you provide more information about what you’re doing in Lansing, the less informed your constituents are? The only good news coming from your office is you can’t run again for another term. Very few will be sorry to see you go.

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