In response to Mr. Chasm (Dec. 8, The News-Review), I'll take being called an agitator by him as a compliment. Thank you. A malicious liar? Not so much.

The News-Review has been satisfied with my sources in the past. I have several sources concerning the letter that Mr. Chasm objects to (Dec. 2, The News-Review). The best one was almost a summary of what I stated in the Public Forum: Yes, environmental groups are paid to sue the government, by the government. Some environmental lawyers get paid as much as $750 an hour. Over $44 million was paid to environmental groups from 2001 to 2010. I suspect those numbers have increased significantly since 2010. That source was John Miller, Fox News, 2012. That should exonerate me on his accusations about me being a liar.

The term malicious liar better fits environmental groups which knowingly scuttle salvage efforts when they know the result of their actions will increase future fires, resource damage, fire suppression cuts and could even take the life of a future fire fighter.

My thinking process is this: When say an environmental group takes actions they know are detrimental to resources, particularly the big three of air, water and soil, why do they do that? Obviously it's not to protect the environment. Profit came to my mind, and the government has deep pockets.

For those who do care about the environment I suggest you look at what is going on. For example: Why are getting more big fires that are more costly in both monetary and resource damage? God gave you a brain, use it. Be wary of false environmental groups that may seek you out, not because you have common interests, but for the financial or political support you provide them.

Don Wilson


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(18) comments

Huge bbfan

I've read and listened to the environmental rhetoric enough to realize that their goals aren't to "save the planet " but to destroy the prosperous economies of the larger countries. As they pocket as much taxpayers money as they can.


Huge bbfan: that's an absurd claim. You are about as honest and accurate as Don The Fabulist.

Environmentalists are about *protecting* the long-term health of the economy and ecology (same Greek root, οἶκος ("house; household; home"). It's the financial and biologic home we all live in, a home that is jeopardized by a rolling climate catastrophe, from fires and floods and droughts, to ocean acidification, sea-level rise, and so much more.

I got the news today, Oh, boy:


Salvage logging stops future fires.


Wretched722: the world is complex. Salvage logging does reduce fuels for future fires, for a while, but leaving the trees in place has myriad laudable effects on the forest that improve biodiversity and (among other benefits) ultimately reduce the intensity of fires.

I recommend you go to Google Scholar and search "salvage logging"--if you care about more than bumper-sticker-level understanding.


Here's just one meta-analysis:


Don, I've said it before, and it's still true now, as it was on August 4th:

Don, you have made a similar, untrue, uncited ("I read once," is not a citation) claims before. The claim is wildly exaggerated, by perhaps four orders of magnitude. And, once again, the News-Review editors did not save you.

Here you are, back on Oct 2. 2020:

" I read in an article from the Medford Mail-Tribune years ago that just one run of a fire were prevented for just one day, it would reduce the amount of greenhouse gas production equal to the emissions all the cars in Los Angeles produce in more than a year."

To which I replied:

"Sorry, but you are certainly mistaken, even if your very imprecise term of "just one run of a fire" is defined as generously as possible: "I read in an article from the Medford Mail-Tribune years ago that just one run of a fire were prevented for just one day, it would reduce the amount of greenhouse gas production equal to the emissions all the cars in Los Angeles produce in more than a year." Well, this is bogus, because LA generates about 176 million tons of CO2/year, and the share of all transportation (not just cars) of that is 28%--so maybe 40 tons of CO2 per year; the 2018 California wildfire year dumped about 68 million tons. Divide the 68/365, get less than 0.2 million tons CO2/day on average from all the fires--not just one day of "one run," whatever that is.

"Your assertion--or at least the assertion you quote--is off by orders of magnitude maybe as many as about four orders of magnitude). You really ought to expect the editors to save you from this nonsense. But they have allowed this misinformation in earlier letters and guest opinions."

Don, now you have escalated your absurd claim; you assert that the Jack Fire is three times as bad as the "just one run" used to be--whatever that might have been, in some alternate, arithmetic-free, universe.

Your claims about electrification, EVs, etc are all similarly bogus.

Also: snags are good. (Yes: they decompose, and do release CO2, but they support myriad life while doing so, and the CO2 is slow, low and cool and available for local photosynthesis.


Who is this "John Miller" of Fox news?

Was it Trump?

I mean, honestly, Don: asserting that you heard something almost a decade ago is simply not a citation.

You do this repeatedly. You cite a "source" by indicating you remember reading in a long time ago, and then treat the information as true. I invite readers to look at you assertions in the past.


Agitators on both sides trying to outshout each other. Neither of them are going to change anything.


Momos: I disagree. There are fabulists like Don Wilson on one side, and physics, chemistry, and biology on the other. Change is inevitable, and nature will always vote last.

Unfortunately, falsehood flies, and Don's side may "win" for a little while, at our mutual peril. Therefore, it is incumbent on each of us who understands science, and values human lives, civilization, biodiversity, and the welfare of future generations to engage and change things for a better world.


According to the GAO investigation report written in 2011, the EPA spent $43 million to DEFEND itself in court against lawsuits filed against it, mostly from environmental groups suing over the clean air and clean water act. This is allowed by law.

During the same period of time the EPA paid $14.2 million to plaintiffs and their attorneys in cases the EPA either lost or settled out of court. This, too, is allowed by law.

It's a common practice in civil litigation for the losing side to pay the winner's legal fees and court costs, according to how it is allowed by law.

I can't figure out a rational way to interpret this in the same fashion as Fox News did. EPA spent $43 million DEFENDING itself in court. They're defended by the Justice Department.


Mr. Wilson claims the News-Review is satisfied with his sources and ultimately his opinion. And I agree with him wholeheartedly because the News-Review has allowed pretty much all Fox News misinformation to be published. However, that’s not the case when a source may be politically left leaning or even a middle of the road source or if the topic happens to be sensitive, particularly to large advertisers. Those opinions and sources are not allowed.

When I previously submitted an OPINION Letter to the Editor citing statistics from a Politico article, the News-Review told me in an email my letter wasn’t published because Politico was not a reliable source and they needed to “find the information” their selves.

When I submitted a different OPINION Letter to the Editor about Mercy Medical Center death statistics, the News-Review told me in an email my letter wasn’t published, “Not because the numbers aren’t true, but because it reads as if you’re blaming Mercy for the deaths.” When I asked if the letter would not be published if the death statistics were for “PeaceHealth or OHSU hospital instead,” the answer I got was “yes,” it would not be published.

Because the News-Review may be “satisfied” with Mr. Wilson’s misinformation sources and opinion, that shouldn’t be used to validate the truth of either.


Mike: I applaud the News-Review's demands for citations. I regret that the standard seems to be so variable and contingent. My perception is that the higher burden of proof is imposed on "my tribe" than on "their tribe"--but that's at least partly due to human nature.

Let's not survivor bias in our data set, either; you are aware of rejected letters written by you, but you are less aware of rejected letters written by others. I'm aware of times the editors may have challenged my assertions, but I'm largely blind to the times the editors have challenged others' assertions.


Yours is the first inkling I've read of the News-Review rejecting, or more likely, just not publishing someone elses letter. I wouldn't mention it if I thought the publishing standard was unbiased. Many times this has been a topic of conversation among my friends, none of which subscribe, who unaffectionately call it the News-less-Review. I've learned to not lead a story by saying, "I read today in the News-Review" because of the eye-roll response I get. The News-Review could do so much better.


Mike, we are all victims of the fallacy of survivor bias: we never hear the story of the family huddled and praying moments before the tornado struck--and were killed anyway.

We might make the mistake of armoring warplanes that return to base in *precisely* the wrong spots.

I've had letters rejected; I know others who have, too. It's also the case that mine don't appear on-line, but do appear in the dead-tree version. Happened two weeks ago tomorrow.


I do wish that your friends, and everyone in the community would subscribe. Journalism is a pillar of democracy. Distrust of institutions is detrimental to civil society. I agree that the News-Review could do better than it does; that's true of all of us. The newspaper even has a board of community members; in addition to comments here, letters to the editor, and conversations with your friends and acquaintances, I suggest you might want to provide some input to the board. As far as I know, the membership of the board is not public information. I may be wrong.


1. Not all Journalism is a pillar of democracy.

2. I hadn't heard the News-Review has a board of community members.


I haven't submitted many letters recently, but back in the day I used to submit one every month. Most were printed without fanfare. But I also experienced rejection, unwanted editing and extreme vetting on my more controversial submissions. It's a normal part of the process.


Good to know.

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