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Downeast Maine

Property Rights
and
Rural Independence


July 26, 2022:

Defense of property rights and rural independence is a huge issue in Maine. Well-heeled politically connected preservationist activists and government agencies have for decades been collaborating, openly campaigning, and lobbying for a Greenline park takeover of private property throughout rural northern New England. They want to eliminate the natural resources industries and private homes, which they hate, across enormous areas they want controlled in a primitive state. The campaign appeals to those seeking to line their pockets as political insiders and/or emotionally overcome with scenic imagery as an excuse to harm other people, all without regard to basic ethics.

There have already been several attempts to take over parts or most of Washington County, including plans and a campaign for an enormous National Park displacing the people. They were stopped only with great effort and personal loss, with people's lives torn apart for years at a time.

National Heritage Area

The latest threat is Federal legislation, US Senate bill S3932, for a “Downeast Maine National Heritage Area” across two counties, to be run by a network of unelected, unaccountable non-profit organizations installed and subsidized by the Federal governement in a politically privileged position: a quasi-government organization self-appointed as spokesman for the region and acting subject to National Park Service approval in the “protection of resources”, which means controlling and taking other people's property.

Deceptively promoted as innocuous free money for tourism while pandering to “local traditions”, the sweeping Federal legislation S3932 (§ 5 & 6) establishes and subsidizes comprehensive central greenline planning for “resource protection”. The broad “protection” language has no limitations and applies regardless of property ownership. It extends, ambiguously, across all of Washington and Hancock counties — the entire rural region from Acadia National Park to the Canadian border...

The Plan is required to include “recommendations for the role of the National Park Service” in the “protection”, in addition to other “Federal, State and local programs”. Priority is required to promote and implement “actions, goals, and strategies” in the management plan, “including assisting units of government and others” to “protect resource values in the Heritage Area” in accordance with an undisclosed inventory of “resources” targeted for “protection”...

Continue National Heritage Area and background

Some Recent Highlights
Scroll down for the full table of contents


July 5, 2022 Classic Videos document National Park Service acquisition abuse of property owners

July 19, 2022 National Heritage Area Greenlining

July 13, 2022 Myth of the “Willing Seller”

May 11, 2008: Quoddy Tides Maine Coast Heritage Trust Land Lust is not “Protection”

July 16, 2022 Maine Coast Heritage Trust letter says does not want inholders it surrounds

July 20, 2022 Non-profits and National Park Service goal to remove inholders

July 25, 2022 NPS planners: Don't warn the victims

July 13, 2022 Anatomy of a Land Trust

July 16, 2022 Maine Coast Heritage Trust: “Right people” not in charge locally -- Federalize Quoddy (1991)

“The MCHT report... written at the request of the NPS... ‘ is a reference document for resource managers and policymakers‘”.

July 15, 2022 Maine Coast Heritage Trust Insider's Federal planning against private owners

July 13, 2022 Maine Coast Heritage Trust Corporate Finances

Aug 3, 2022 Acadia Creation Myth

July 13, 2022 National Monument Decree Took Over Part of the Maine Woods: bypassed Congress for New Unit of National Park System.

July 13, 2022 Campaign to Federalize the Maine Woods

July 13, 2022 Trump created Federal entitlement for annual government land acquisition

December 22, 2014 – USFWS internal “Hocutt memo” hidden since 1993 acknowledges duplicitous agency PR campaign directed at local residents and property owners targeted for restrictions and acquisition in the Canaan Valley, WV. Tactics mirror Maine and nationwide.

March 25, 2014 – Maine Coast Heritage Trust opposes restoring Maine's authority over ceding land and jurisdiction to the Federal government

Contents


“Habitat”


As the national environmentalist lobby pushes to expand the Endangered Species Act to cover entire “ecosystem” “habitats”, grant–driven pressure groups such as Maine Audubon are collaborating with activist agencies such as the US Fish & Wildlife Service, the Maine State Planning Office and other government agencies to impose “habitat” designations for sweeping state restrictions and prohibitions on use of private property. A series of articles and columns mostly from the Downeast Coastal Press, in order of their occurence:
Trashing the Economy – A National Environmentalist Agenda


Is the prolonged environmentalist war on private property and civilization in Maine a coincidence in a natural course of political events or is it a well-funded and organized campaign? Trashing the Economy, a book on organized environmentalism and its funding shows the national pattern being repeated in Maine... ... and these articles give a behind the scenes look into an Environtmental Grantmakers Association strategy conference revealing a coordinated strategy to destroy both the economy and those who dare to fight back.
Why Would Anyone Want to Do This?


Will the Atlantic Salmon – now being officially promoted by environmentalists and the Federal Government as an “endangered species” – be to Downeast Maine what the Spotted Owl has been to the Pacific Northwest? This is a review of Alston Chase's book, In A Dark Wood, which describes the environmentalist attack on the rural population of the Pacific Northwest using the Endangered Species Act to shut down the natural resource economy. A major theme is the environmentalist philosophical vision and guiding principles that motivated the attack – and the question of where these motivating ideas came from.
With environmentalists seeking a government takeover of enormous amounts of private property, a Maine grassroots organization called “Keep Maine Free” held a rally to protest the socialism inherent in environmentalist politics and its demand for massive government ownership of the land. This is an op-ed I wrote in the Downeast Coastal Press supporting the protest rally.
This is an op-ed I wrote in the Downeast Coastal Press on the role of the viro's “anti-industrial revolution” ideology in the northeast electrical power outage of 2003.
Battles



Every year the environmentalist lobby backs a national media campaign, coordinated by the Wilderness Society, to go after what they call the 10 or 15 most “endangered” sites in the country. There is no objective basis for the designation – the “endangered” sites list is a media ploy to manipulate puplic opinion in support of a government takeover of whatever the environmentalist lobby has targeted.
In 1988 hardly anyone could imagine a Federal takeover of private property in Maine for the purpose of destroying civilization and the economy in the name of preservation. These notes summarize the barage of environmentalist abuses that show they are serious – and relentless.
One of the earliest national parks in the country, Maine's Acadia National Park has a history of abuse as the environmentalist movement has risen in power.
CARA Condemnation and Relocation Act: Taxpayers' money to take the taxpayers' property

A major ingredient in the orchestration of a government takeover of vast regions of private property through acquistion is money – lot's of it. Since 1965 the annual congressional appropriations of hundreds of millions per year through the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) have been the primary source of money used to take over private property for government parks and preserves.

The politics of a Federal acquisition slush fund is described in Ron Arnold's 1982 At the Eye of the Storm: James Watt and the Environmentalists pp 181-187.

Environmentalists are promoting legislation to establish a $3 billion/year off-budget entitlement called the “Conservation and Reinvestment Act” (CARA) – also called the “Condemnation and Relocation Act” – which is mostly dedicated to or available for acquisition, but also for subsidizing viro groups for promotion and lobbying. The off-budget guarantee of a large increase in perpetual funding is intended to accelerate the conversion of private property to government ownership, trampling and eliminating the rights of private owners on a massive scale. A large portion of the funding is intended to target Maine.

The following articles covered CARA when it was previously before Congress in 2000. This monster came close to passing in 2001 and was re-introduced as H.R. 4100 as the “Get Outdoors Act of 2004” (the bill text is at the Thomas web site (search on bill number HR4100). It remains a major goal of the Big Park lobby, which is waiting for the politically opportune moment to spring it again.

UPDATE: LWCF was converted in 2020 into an entitlement for government acquisition at the full $900 million/year original limit, permanently bypassing the normal Congressional appropriations process and with no restrictions on eminent domain.

President Trump, following his son-in-law senior advisor Jared Kushner's election strategy, told Senate leader Mitch McConnell that he wanted the entitlement passed for a bizarre and unprincipled attempt to aid the failing re-election of Sen. Corey Gardner (R-CO), who sponsored the bill.

Gardner (deservedly) lost his Senate seat, and Trump's unprincipled “Pragmatist” grasping with a cheap political gimmick gave the national preservationist movement a permanent major annual entitlement to take over private property they had not been able to get for 50 years.


Property Taxes

Property taxes in Maine are among the highest in the country and property taxes are far worse where market values of land along the coast increase out of proportion with other property. Systematic government and land trust acquisitions removing land from private ownership drain the local economic and tax base, pushing up property taxes on those left.

The state policy of arbitrarily imposing escalating costs of government through an inequitable, annually recurring asset tax based (only) on real estate value is punishing more and more land and home owners, sometimes forcing them off their own property. This phenomenon is progressing up the coast and increasingly threatens downeast property owners.

As one viro activist put it in the late 1980's, if landowners won't sell then “tax the hell out of them”. Property tax policy has in principle much in common with taking private property by eminent domain in the name of the so–called “public good” (note that the rights of the victim are not considered to be part of the “public good”).



Last Update: 08/16/22