FEATURED REPORT:

The Mining Burden: Why State Land Seizures Could Cost Billions

Should state land takeover efforts move forward, Western states would be saddled with the costs of cleaning up 100,000 abandoned mines that exist on public lands today.

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American Lands Council Shares Ammon Bundy’s Anti-Public Lands Propaganda

For the last several years, the politicians who run the American Lands Council have attempted to keep an arm’s length from the militant extremists who share their goals. Now, for the first time, the ALC has given up this veneer and is openly sharing the Bundy family’s lies.

In late January, the ALC posted a video to both Facebook and YouTube that purports to show Bureau of Land Management firefighters starting fires that killed cattle and destroyed homes near Burns, Oregon. Salt Lake Tribune columnist Paul Rolly this week revealed the truth behind the slew of false claims made in the ALC’s video.

As evidenced by The Oregonian’s reporting at the time and an extensive review by the BLM afterwards, the fires were started by lightning, and were unprecedented in their size and scope. As one BLM ecologist said later, “We have not had fires of this magnitude in this part of the state for over 100 years.”

The ALC got its video via Ammon Bundy

The American Lands Council’s video is a lightly edited version of a video posted by Ammon Bundy on December 5th. Montana State Senator Jennifer Fielder, the new president of the American Lands Council, posted a link to that video, which prominently features Ammon Bundy, on her personal Facebook page the evening of January 26th.

Jennifer Fielder Bundy Share

The very next day, an edited version of Ammon Bundy’s video appeared on the American Lands Council page. It appears the ALC took Bundy’s video, removed Ammon’s introduction, added a bit of music, and passed it off as their own work.

Bundy’s video was based on yet another video posted in 2012, with new graphics on top. That video, narrated in real-time, contains the false claims about the BLM’s actions fighting the fire. The ALC, apparently too lazy to even search for a clean copy to plagiarize, much less check the facts claimed in either video, seemed to make a clumsy attempt to hide the fact that Bundy was the original source of their video.

Bundy ALC video side by side.001

The fact that ALC is using material derived from and promoted by the Bundys shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who’s been watching the group in action. While attempting to distance itself from Bundy’s armed seizure of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, the ALC has long aligned itself with extremist groups and ideologies. Fielder, the new ALC president, is a member of the Sanders Natural Resource Council, which is run by Militia of Montana founder and white supremacist John Trochmann.

This past weekend, the ALC hosted a “property rights workshop” in Idaho that listed as its sponsors a veritable who’s who of anti-government extremist groups and conspiracy theorists, from the John Birch Society to the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association. Militants Ryan Bundy and LaVoy Finicum personally recruited participants for a “test run” of the workshop held the prior weekend in Cedar City, Utah.

Utah Freedom Sponsors

The bottom line

It’s been clear for years that voters across the West don’t support the ALC/Bundy land seizure agenda. But that has never stopped Ken Ivory, the former ALC president, from financing his crusade using taxpayer money from counties. Ivory has traveled the west, convincing towns and counties to divert taxpayer dollars away from underfunded schools and decaying infrastructure to his six-figure salary. Now Ivory has handed over the reins of his group to State Senator Fielder, who is even more transparently radical.

We now know what many have long suspected: the American Lands Council and Ammon Bundy are following the same playbook. The organization and its members can no longer hide behind platitudes of “solutions” like legislation and litigation when it promotes mistruths and propaganda being spread by the extremist militants who are sitting in jail for leading an armed insurrection against the United States government.


Photo illustration by CWP: Ken Ivory, Ammon Bundy, Jennifer Fielder

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REPORT:

The Mining Burden: Why State Land Seizures Could Cost Billions

Should state land takeover efforts move forward, Western states would be saddled with the costs of cleaning up 100,000 abandoned mines that exist on public lands today.