Seattle P-I: "Bush Administration: Too cozy by half"
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER EDITORIAL BOARD
The obsequious way a federal agency handled the Weyerhaeuser Co. on spotted owl issues tells a larger story about life under the Bush administration. These times are so sweet for those with money that even when the government is concerned that a company's logging may hurt an endangered species, the corporation gets a chance to edit a letter about those worries.
As a Saturday Seattle P-I story reported, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says it didn't agree to all the changes Weyerhaeuser wanted. That's something, we suppose. And maybe it's a mitigating matter that it grew out of what was described as a collaborative effort to resolve the concerns, while, of course, letting the company come as close as humanly possible to achieving all its logging goals.
This sort of coziness isn't unique to the Bush administration. But it certainly is a symbol of how the administration does business: as much for the benefit of those in business as possible, with as little regard as Americans can remember for the fundamental matters of governing according to laws and rules.
The administration repeatedly has been caught telling federal scientists to let corporations have their way with the air, water and public lands. But there are other, less obvious tactics to make sure money is served, such as perpetually shortchanging Fish and Wildlife and other environmental agencies. Then, officials are so pleased when they find someone like Weyerhaeuser trying to work with them that they bend over backward. And America keeps going downward.
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