Closing the barn doors after the horses are gone

You have to give him credit for trying. Utah State Rep Mike Noel of Kanab managed to get his bill through which would punish land lease bidders who have no intention of buying those leases. This, of course, is directed at the action of our local hero, Tim DeChristopher, whose spontaneous idea managed to disrupt a fraudulent auction (the lease sales from which were later canceled by the Obama administration).

The thing is this: it’s been done. No-one would attempt to do it again because clearly the parties involved will now be very alert to any such possibility. It couldn’t happen twice. It really was the perfect protest, at the right time and done in the best possible, peaceful way. I’d call it a work of art in the civil disobedience arena, and one that cannot be duplicated.

So why do we need Rep. Noel’s bill? I guess because it always makes people feel better when they prevent something that really upset and frustrated them from happening again in the future – even if there’s no possibility of that event.

Tim DeChristopher is still the champion!

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  1. #1 by Cliff Lyon on March 13, 2009 - 8:10 am

    Amen! Please go to and join the website to show your support for Tim DeChristopher!

  2. #2 by Richard Warnick on March 13, 2009 - 8:58 am

    I read somewhere that the bidders on the BLM’s wild horses have to go through an extensive pre-qualification process before the auction. Yet Tim DeChristopher was able to walk in off the street and bid on millions of dollars worth of oil and gas leases. The horse metaphor works figuratively but not literally.

  3. #3 by Larry Bergan on March 13, 2009 - 3:01 pm

    People are always afraid of people who are smarter then themselves. I’ve noticed Tim’s name doesn’t come up much in articles that are directly related to his actions on that wondrous day for Utah’s precious lands. Instead, the Secretary of the Interior is mentioned as the bad guy. If Gail Ruzicka had disrupted the auction, things would be different.

    I was impressed to get a letter from “The Center For Water Advocacy”, asking if I wanted the money I donated to Tim back. That would be the first time I’ve been offered money that didn’t need to be offered.


    I tried once to join that website and it wouldn’t go through. Since I’ve had that happen on dozens of sites before, I gave up. Lots of E-mail I get from progressive sites get marked as “junk”, or “scams” for some reason. This must be causing some people to reject interacting with those sites. Now that Bush is out of office, I may be able to start believing that these types of things are coincidences. Thank goodness!

  4. #4 by Uncle Rico on March 14, 2009 - 5:49 am

    I give him (Noel) credit for nothing. How does the State of Utah even have jurisdiction over an auction involving federal lands and conducted by a federal agency?

  5. #5 by Becky on March 14, 2009 - 7:08 am

    Good point, Uncle, although as you know, here in Utah legislators have never been known to let illegalities get in the way of passing a feel-good or good-for-your-morals bill.

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