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Posts published in “Schmidt”


Dale found this service both meaningful and convenient.

The militia had discussed the southern border problem for weeks but had finally come to this compromise. The whole militia could have loaded up and gone down to Texas where they would be welcome. But they all had jobs.

Except Fred, the Captain, who was on social security.

And Donnie, with his disability. They were both gung-ho to take the trip south.

Both Justis and Junior seemed to be living off of some settlement, and they didn’t seem eager.

But Dale had to work. So, he’d said he couldn’t go to Texas.

So, they set up this outpost on the southern Idaho border to protect our country from the invasion.

They had their tactical gear and rations. Though Dale’s wife, Betty had pointed out to him the cost of all that gear equaled a car monthly payment, maybe more.

The wind was cold. The sun slanted west. Again, he wasn’t at the barricade, but up on look out. He thought back to when they had been protecting the unborn. That had gotten dramatic. He wasn’t sure of any unborn children saved, but at least they’d made a stand.

But this border thing was a bit harder for him to understand. He really didn’t want foreigners moving into his neighborhood. But Paco and his wife sure seemed to be reasonable folks. Paco did concrete work and she made tamales. They were good neighbors, though their kids were wild. Dale smiled as he thought of their antics.

But he had seen on the videos how there were tens of thousands coming across bringing fentanyl to poison his neighbors. And they were bringing in sex slaves, children to be defiled. He felt a righteous purpose. This righteousness brought him peace. Lord, he needed peace.

He scanned the southern horizon. They had been warned to look for vans, since the unlawful immigrants are often piled together. It was chilly, but he was warm. The low sun and the peace left him time to think.

He thought of his next job. A dairy south of him needed another water line. He could rent the trencher and knew how to make the connections, but working down in that trench was beyond his girth. His last employee was violated and now serving a rider.

The dairy seemed to have lots of Spanish speaking workers. He wondered if any of them were part of this invading horde. He also wondered if any of them knew how to glue PVC.

He shook his head to clear it. Too many thoughts can distract you. But he saw nothing in the distance.

He thought again about the pipes and the trencher and some young skinny guy he could teach down in the ditch.

His radio crackled. “Red Leader to Blue outpost.”

He toggled. “Copy”

“You see the white van from the south?”

Dale looked as far as he could, but the wind brought tears to his eyes. He held his hand up to block it and sure enough, a white van was coming north across Idaho’s border. “Roger. I see it.”

There was a long pause from Red Leader. Then, “We will intercept. Must protect the border.”

Dale dropped below the ridge and got out his binoculars. He could see the militiamen move the barricades out onto the road and shoulder their arms, like in the drills.

The van slowed and stopped. They were interrogated. The road militia stood with arms ready, but after the questioning, the barricades were removed, and the van passed.

Dale asked. “No illegals?”

Red Leader was chipper. “No, just some Mormons fundamentalists coming back from Mexico. They’re OK.”

Dale felt good about his duty.



Are we, or are they? Maybe they just think we are.

Megan Blanksma is no idiot. But her posture of protecting us from government intrusion makes me think she might think us so. Shame on her.

She wants to change how immunizations are recorded here in Idaho to “protect privacy”. She should set her sights on Google or Amazon, not the Immunization Registry.

I wish Representative Blanksma could have been with me in the ER on the weekends in Grangeville. I can’t tell you how many times folks showed up with a scratch or a cut from the rusty nail wanting a tetanus shot.

“I don’t need no stitches, doc, just the tetanus.”

When was your last shot?

“Heck, I don’t know. It’s been years.”

We will look it up. The nurse starts logging in.

“That shot keeps it from getting infected, don’t it?”

Well, no. Tetanus is a rare complication from an anaerobic wound. Last year in this country about seven people died from tetanus. But wound infections are much more common, and the tetanus shot does not keep you from getting a wound infection.

The nurse finds that his last shot was three years ago, recorded in the state registry.

It looks like you don’t need a shot, you are well protected from tetanus. But make sure you wash that wound, soak it, let us know if it gets red or painful. You don’t need another tetanus shot for another seven years. Though there is some evidence you only need them every thirty years. You’ll be fine.

The current immunization registry guidelines are that people can “opt out” at their request. If they don’t opt out, their immunization data is recorded in a protected data base. Identified health care providers can access the information.

Do you think your shopping data is protected? Are you an idiot?

When you Google 18 cubic foot refrigerators then log in to Fox News and see ads for 18 CF refrigerators, do you think this is just a coincidence? Then you’re an idiot.

It’s all about information. For some reason, our state does not have the capability to find people we have improperly disenrolled from Medicaid. But our DMV knows if you have car insurance. Why doesn’t Representative Blanksma go after that data base?

I think it’s because she knows an avid base when she sees one. Antivaxxers are at the head of any Trump rally. So why not combine the universal desire for privacy with the antivaxxer sentiment? It’s a win-win. But that’s just because she thinks we are idiots.

I don’t believe we are.

Opt in and opt out is a crucial pivot point.

Most of us don’t think about our retirement.

Nor about keeping up to date on our immunizations.

Good evidence shows that employees enrolled (opted in) into a retirement plan, with no cost to themselves, have more savings in the long run. When the retirement benefit is structured so they must “opt in”, some choose not to. Maybe they are suspicious of their employers’ motives, who knows. But the opt in, opt out pivot point is powerful.

Please, look in your wallet. Do you have a smudged immunization card?

Maybe you think this service of keeping track of immunizations is best done by the private sector. Make sure you give them your credit card information and email address.

Yes, you are an idiot.

Representative Blanksma described being shocked when she found out that her children’s immunizations were recorded in the state registry when she had “opted out” from that process years back. I can appreciate that affront.

But dismantling a good system is an idiotic response.


Remote work

I guess remote work is the new library porn for the Idaho legislature. It seems the Republican legislative leadership has decided it can manage state employees better that the administrators watching their work product.

A couple bills have been introduced to limit remote work by state employees. I guess we all gotta have something, don’t we?

For me, it the jerks who don’t signal their turn. But there’s already a law about that. In my brief time in the legislature, I didn’t look around for laws to pass to make my nonsignaling citizens suffer. I never thought about bumping up that penalty. But I was an Idaho Democrat. I couldn’t engage in culture wars. Despite what Dorothy Moon says, most Idaho Democrats in elected positions know the political landscape, and work with it. We can’t afford to be culture warriors.

But Idaho Republicans seem to be doing just that.

There indeed may be some evidence that Democrats are more accepting of remote work than Republicans.

Why don’t they go after Subarus? It’s a well-known fact that progressive folks in this northern clime buy all wheel drive Subarus, not 4WD Ford F150’s.

A North Idaho Republican State Senator griped to me about how he was getting grief that his wife drove a Subaru. “They’re great in the snow and they get good mileage. Why can’t a Republican drive a Subaru?” He’s no longer in the legislature.

The Culture Wars of the Idaho legislature are pitiful. Except, they get to write our laws. Please, never forget that. And the legislature has the hubris to tell the executive branch how to run government.

The endless culture wars bills come out early in the legislative session. I will skip past the abortion and anti-gay and transexual laws. Because this one seems so silly.

Why can’t state employees in this day and age work from home?

Is it because while they are at home, doing work through their internet connection they might also get the laundry done?

Is it because they might be more likely to vote Democratic?

Is it because they might have progressive ideas about how things should be happening?

Maybe it’s been shown in some Koch Brothers data mining that people that work at home are more likely to favor solar panels and Subarus, thus vote Democratic.

In any event, the Idaho Legislature has decided it is in our, the taxpayer’s best interest to micromanage state employees.

These early introduced bills are often just a locating shot, for their pals back home to know where they stand. But in this case, they have received significant traction.

The interim Director of the Department of Health and Welfare has instituted a policy to restrict all DHW workers so they can only work 20% of their time from home.

Working from home might make good sense. If you are screening data on Medicaid claims, why do you need to drive in from Meridian, park in your spot, and log in? Does the state have an interest that you have to commute for another hour and a half each day? Is the state better served that you can’t do the laundry between reviewing claims?

If the work is not getting done, we have a management problem, not a policy issue.

But the Idaho legislature seems to think that protecting us taxpayers from these “home workers” serves us.

They aren’t protecting us from home schoolers.

I don’t get it. It doesn’t make any fiscal sense.

If moms or dads are great to teach their kids at home, why can’t state employees do such work for us from their homes?

It’s just another culture war. Give it up. Fight for all of us, not just for those that vote for you.



The Idaho legislature has its seasons. Old hands know this, and young bucks and does have figured it out too. You, the interested public should also know it.

I don’t communicate this like I’m a wise old sage. Many are far wiser and have seen more seasons than me. But we should get this out there so we can all have a sense of what’s going on.

When I went hunting with my daughter this fall, she commented on how she’d heard rifle shots in her drainage. She was worried the elk had been spooked. “They don’t pay much attention to shots. They move when an animal falls.”

Here in the early season of the Idaho legislature we are hearing the shots.

The “antiwoke” bill proposed to change all the words in Idaho code that said “fetus” would be changed to “preborn child” got introduced for us all to be shocked and appalled. Then, the sponsor said it would go no further. It will be held in committee at her request.

Maybe the sponsor was shooting at something. Maybe she was just letting her fellow hunters know where she was. She didn’t harvest. Harvesting comes later in the season. These early weeks of the legislature are for location shots, not harvesting.

Similarly, we have the long, complicated bill from Representative Redman that would essentially repeal Medicaid Expansion. It has so many clauses, it makes my head spin. Don’t try to read it. It’s not worth your time. It proposes so many restrictions that it would accomplish repeal of the Medicaid Expansion that 63% of Idahoans favored in an initiative vote. Why is he so out of tune? These early season shots are important to let the rest of us know just who we are hunting with.

You see, our elected representatives are not our hunting camp buddies.

It was always fun to come back to camp and hear what the others had seen, build up the fire, eat the food.

You have to understand that our elected representatives aren’t sitting around the fire with you. They are in their own camp.

In my fifth year of Idaho State Senate service, I went to a presentation from the local Soil Conservation Districts. Their goal was to inform state legislators about the work they did. A colleague from north of me commented to the presenters about how, when he discussed this with constituents, he didn’t think this was a reasonable use of tax dollars. I asked him over lunch just which constituents expressed these ideas. “I just meet with my Republican Central Committee.”

These early shots reflect what they are talking about around their campfires, not ours.

Little will be harvested. But it’s something to brag about back in camp. But maybe someday they will harvest.

The middle season of the Idaho legislature is when the menial work is done. Simple budgets get passed; repair bills fix up the sloppy bills from years before. There are always the lingering hot button bills that are held late to consume some drama. Abortion, libraries, pornography, some other issue might fill this middle season when we should have harvested much earlier.

But the harvest is always late since Speaker Moyle has risen to power.

These early bills might garner support back in the Central Committee meetings, whether they pass or fail. But the real juice comes at the end.

And then, at the end of the long hunt, there’s little time to direct the shot.

These last two sessions have seen tax bills proposed in the last week, rammed through committee, transferred long past the deadline for such, and approved. The hero took the final shot and dropped the harvest.

Are we so eager for meat? We should want more.



I had this conversation with my wife yesterday about Idaho’s abortion laws. I have told this before, but she said I needed to say it again. She didn’t remember. Maybe you don’t either.

The Idaho antiabortion statutes are so confusing, even Boise State couldn’t get it right. Up here in Moscow, we are not surprised. “Who do we hate, Boise State” has not been a chant heard here for a long time, but it echoes still between the grain elevators.

In their recent poll of Idaho residents, BSU prefaced a question with the statement “Currently in Idaho, abortion is banned after six weeks of pregnancy…”. That prefacing has no basis in statute. All abortions are banned, unless the doctor can positively attest the life of the mother is in jeopardy. There is also the exception for rape, if a police report has been filed, but my State Senator is trying to remove that. The BSU professors gulped when a reporter pointed this out to them.

In my previous column, I pointed out how these laws, no longer subject to Supreme Court protection, would make me a criminal. I guess I might be spending the last of my days in Idaho Correctional facilities. I ask the local prosecutor to come knock on my door.

I’ve told this story before.

A young woman didn’t want to be pregnant. But she was pretty far along when she came to me. It turned out her baby had a deformation not compatible with life outside her womb. It was anencephalic. The baby’s brain had not developed. She also had excessive amniotic fluid. Her cervix was ripe, meaning, I thought she could soon go into labor. I explained the situation to her, that her baby would not live, but in my opinion, she should deliver. She agreed.

The next day, I ruptured the membranes that surrounded her fetus, excuse me, “preborn child”. If the Idaho Legislature has it’s “Anti-woke” way, those are the words we now should all be using.

So now I want you to read the text of Idaho statute defining an abortion:

the use of any means to intentionally terminate the clinically diagnosable pregnancy of a woman with knowledge that the termination by those means will, with reasonable likelihood, cause the death of the unborn child…I.C. § 18-604(1)

I ruptured the membranes… “any means”.

The child will die outside of the womb… “cause the death”.

I could not attest that the condition of excessive amniotic fluid would cause the death of the mother, though it does carry a risk. I am guilty.

So, all women in Idaho carrying an anencephalic “Preborn Child” will need to leave the state, unless they are comfortable having their baby without medical intervention. For that doctor could go to prison.

Maybe the frequency of this condition is so rare we should just ignore it to protect all the other “Preborn” that could be murdered. There were probably only 5-10 anencephalies in Idaho last year. But there were a few Potters Syndromes, some other chromosomal aberrancies. It’s not up to the mother, the family. The legislature knows best, don’t they?

That is where our legislature, the people we have elected, have put us. I pity the women. I feel for the families. This is a tragedy. But our representatives do not have the compassion to consider their condition. Maybe they just can’t be compassionate.

But maybe we Idahoans can. The responses to that poorly prefaced BSU poll showed that 58% of Idahoans favored offering exceptions to the misrepresented restrictions. Remember, Boise State said you could get an abortion in Idaho before six weeks of pregnancy. Legally, you cannot. Ever.

It doesn’t really matter to our elected officials just what we think. I can’t tell who the heck they are listening to.


Shoot the messenger

Last year I spoke too soon.

I applauded Representative Blanksma for making some recommendations to her body. This year I’m offering raspberries.

She recommended expanded coverage for kids in the CHIP program, as well as a recommendation to expand Medicaid coverage to women to 12 months after they deliver their baby. These were recommendations that came from the Maternal Mortality Review Committee. This Board had been counting more and more Idaho moms die before or after they delivered their babies. Idaho now has a higher maternal death rate than Nicaragua. And Cuba, and practically every developed country in the world.

Except, the dismal standard, the great USA. This richest country in the world has a maternal mortality rate three times that of France, and twice South Korea’s. So maybe we should be proud Idaho’s maternal death rate is below our national average. It’s all relative, right. We are sure to protect the “preborn child”, but moms can die, I guess.

So, while Idaho has been making itself the banner state for abortion restrictions, we have been watching more infants, more moms die around childbirth. This doesn’t make me proud. Maybe it does you.

The MMRC was established in 2019. But the establishing legislation included a sunset in 2023. And the sun set without the legislature renewing it. The MMRC had as members an OB/Gyn, a Family doc, a midwife, a coroner, and a social worker. This sort of diversity makes good sense.

Idaho is the only state in the union that does not review maternal deaths. But that’s another word for “freedom”, maybe.

I would be considering myself too important to think my applause of Blanksma’s actions last year doomed them. I sure hope not. But that was always the risk for an Idaho Democrat. Sometimes it’s not the good sense the speaker offers, but the label attached. When I was in the legislature, I paid close attention to this. I should be now, too, but I’m getting too old for nonsense.

In fact, the guy who wanted Idaho to establish a Maternal Mortality Review Committee contacted me when I was a State Senator, back in 2016. I was busy then not getting Medicaid Expansion done. I listened to him, I agreed with his idea, then I asked him what he knew of Idaho politics.

He admitted very little. I gave him the names of some Republican legislators, now long gone, who might be able to advance such an idea.

I would hope my criticism this year of Representative Blanksma’s “compromise” doesn’t spur their adoption. But she has proposed a solution this is horribly unwise. If I was Trumpian, I would use different words.

Since I am retired, I guess I am free now to piss off the Idaho Board of Medicine. That is not my goal, but it may be the outcome of this rant.

Blanksma may see the value in having maternal mortality review. But her suggestion this year is that maternal mortality review be a function of the Idaho Board of Medicine.

The Idaho Board of Medicine has had the responsibility of licensing and disciplining its members. I have commented previously on how I thought they were doing.

I have known some of the Board members over the years, and I respect them. Doctors don’t always want to confront their colleagues. Will this review lead to discipline? Is that how it will be seen by the medical community? If so, frank considerations of actions and outcomes will be fraught. This is the wrong place to put this.

The previous MMRC was housed in the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, a bugaboo for Republican legislators. Maybe that’s why Blanksma picked the Board of Medicine. Bad choice.


Work for it

It seems our Governor is considering work requirements for Medicaid enrollees. He hasn’t done his research.

Or maybe he has, and this is a Trojan Horse, just waiting for the Idaho Freedom Foundation to roll it within its walls.

Do I need to remind you just what Medicaid is?

Okay, it’s a Federal/ State partnership to get people health insurance. States can enroll, but don’t have to. Idaho could disenroll at any time. Maybe Idaho would if those fire breathing IFF legislators got some cojones. Instead, they just want to grouse, kick dirt, and blame poor people for taking their money to get health insurance. Meanwhile, they get their health insurance paid for by us Idaho taxpayers to the tune of $15,000 a year. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

Anyway, it seems the Medicaid Expansion Initiative is still twisting the IFF legislators’ shorts. I hear it at town halls, I hear it when the budget is puzzled over. Heck, I hated seeing the climb in Medicaid costs when I served on the Joint Finance Committee. But maybe only Brad is seeing the big picture.

We have just kicked 120,000 Idahoans off Medicaid. That will make the Medicaid budget more palatable this year for the legislature. They don’t care that the vast majority of those kicked off don’t even know they have been. They’ll find out when their meds run out. And then we’ll pay for their time in the hospital, the ER, or the jail or prison.

When we cut Medicaid back in 2011 due to the economic downturn foisted on us by the big banks, I told my fellow Senators, “You can save money by not changing the oil in your rig. But it will cost you in the long run.” All those cuts did indeed cost more through increased indigent and ER bills.

So why is Brad talking about work requirements now? I have no clear idea. He doesn’t call me.

Work requirements have been tried in a few states. Idaho even has a work requirement application pending. It was not approved by Trump, nor Biden. But maybe now, Brad thinks. Or does he?

The Arkansas experiment is the only one with any good data. And it was brief, only lasting less than a year. But they successfully kicked 18,000 people off coverage. Those kicked off could have reapplied, but only 11% did. Sounds like a win for us taxpayers, huh?

Did you know that over 60% of people on Medicaid already work at least half time?

Did you know that having health insurance has a significant positive influence on getting employment?

Did you know that 25% of people on Medicaid have poor internet access?

Brad knows all this.

Put this all together and Medicaid work requirements starts to sound like another IFF library porn dog whistle. But our Governor blowing it?

Brad also knows, for Medicaid in Idaho to be a better program we need to invest in directing money to smart choices, not just writing checks for whatever bills we get. That will require some investment.

Blue Cross has rooms of people authorizing, or not, tests, procedures, medications. Idaho Medicaid doesn’t.

Let me digress. Idaho Medicaid had a computer algorithm that required any change in narcotic prescription had to go through the “prior authorization” process. I was trying to get a chronic pain patient to taper his narcotics. He finally agreed. I wrote a stepped down prescription for him. The pharmacy wouldn’t fill it because it needed to be “Prior Authorized”, even though it was a lower dose. So now he gets no meds, is in withdrawal, and he thinks I’m an idiot.

Maybe I was.

But sure enough, we can do better. Medicaid needs to be better. It can be.



We are products of our environments, no doubt, but we bring our traits, our tendencies to such. The environment shapes each of us differently.

My late father was born more than a hundred years ago. His broken home and rural poverty affected him. But growing up in the depression, then serving in WWII may have made him part of Tom Brokaw’s “Greatest Generation”, though he lived with and never really recovered from those scarring times. I don’t think he could see his scars, or even feel them. Maybe I did some, through living with him.

I’m not sure I can see how I was influenced by my environment, though I take this time to reflect on the mirror darkly before me.

I’m a late Boomer, born in the mid 1950’s. I watched the small town my father took us to explode into suburbs. The vineyards and groves were bulldozed for tract houses. I still abhor rampant growth.

It seems to be what Idaho leaders are embracing, since our policies have made us the fastest growing state for five years running now. While US population growth has slowed to its lowest since the Pilgrims, Idaho booms. Idaho’s population is countercyclical, I guess. Too crowded elsewhere, come to Idaho.

But when I was entering and finishing undergraduate college, the economic milieu was dominated by inflation. And I believe that economic climate influenced me. Sure, there was the Viet Nam war, race riots, assassinations, and Watergate, but the elevator music in the background was the burdensome tune of despair. The value of your wealth, if you had any, was not going to be worth as much very soon. Why invest in a solid future when it is going to slowly melt to less?

I finished my degree and had no plans for a future in 1976. After a year of wandering, I landed in Idaho. Back then, the state had well short of a million residents. Boise was booming with 4% annual growth, but I didn’t find the Treasure Valley attractive. I went to my step grandmothers ranch above Hells Canyon.

It was there I came to have faith in investment. The fences needed posts, the hay needed mowing, the wood needed sawing, every rig needed fixing. After a couple years of this I realized I needed a career beyond the ranch. So, I went out and got one.

Inflation had dropped, but boy, interest rates were high. We see the same playing out right now. Still, interest rates now are nowhere near what it was when we bought our first and only house.

I look at our current economic environment and the burden inflation will have on my children, and theirs. Inflation has dropped a bit. Maybe things will be okay. My kids all struggle to afford buying a house. Prices are high.

Idaho’s population booms. And not just people, our incomes have grown. We lead the nation in median income growth. Admittedly, we started pretty low. There was plenty of room for growth.

As the Idaho legislature comes into session this coming week, I hope they have these ideas in mind. The first meeting of the Economic Outlook and Revenue Assessment Committee is today. Tune in. They are tasked with guessing what taxes will be coming in. They have undershot the number since the bust of 2008. Such predictions inhibit the willingness to invest.

I would hope our leaders could see the value in stable growth, and wise investment. Such wisdom will inspire the generations to come.

Booms are unsustainable. They hurt. Wise investment promotes stable and sustainable growth. That should be the goal.


Bull Schmidt

I know Congressman Russ Fulcher well. And I appreciate he can say what he thinks should be said. But I feel free to call him out when he speaks, what my high school taunters called, “Bull Schmidt.”

There has been a 20-yearlong lawsuit about Idaho salmon and the lower four Snake River dams. For those of you who don’t live here, our salmon spawn in our streams, then must go to the ocean through state boundaries established by 1870’s Congresses. To get to the ocean Idaho Salmon must traverse falls and waters now slack behind dams in a state called Washington, then down a dammed Columbia between Oregon and Washington. These boundaries do not respect anadromous fish. But we have a federal government that authorized the damming of this channel. It is now a channel of death.

It seems there is finally an agreement, of sorts. It seems, the claimants will agree to not pursue further expensive lawsuits if renewable energy is promoted to replace the measly megawatts of the lower four Snake River dams, situated in Washington.

These lower four dams have long been in dispute. They were almost an afterthought of the Army Corps of Engineers.

But the salmon have always been prized.

It wasn’t long after white men came to this country before nets were strung across the Columbia. Canned salmon rivaled red fir as our greatest export after the beaver and gold were gone. Downstream Oregon established a Fish and Game commission to regulate the harvest of salmon in the 1870’s when they saw the carnage. Upstream Idaho just shrugged. We spent our game preservation energy on elk.

But the Federal Government did sign a treaty with the Nez Perce. Then they manufactured another, more suiting their needs. But the Nez Perce did not sign. A surrogate did. Then the US Army drove the nontreaty folks into death. If only Custer hadn’t been such a damn fool.

That 1855 treaty promised that the land my house stands on would forever belong to the people that saved the lives of the Corps of Discovery. But the nimiipuu do not make that claim.

They want the salmon promised.

Congressman Fulcher claims the deal made about the lower four dams will destroy our economy. I say “our” because I live here. I drive through Lewiston and Clarkston to go steelhead and salmon fishing. I know these small towns.

The proposal to make the lower Snake River slack water suggested having an Idaho seaport would boom their economy. But please just look at the numbers. Lewiston and Clarkston boomed while they were building the dams. But since they have grown like the rest of us. Dams have not made them boom. But the salmon have dwindled.

So, Congressman Fulcher is guilty of “bull Schmidt”. Increasing alternative energy sources to replace what the dams produce will not decimate the economy of this region. It will weaken the arguments of the dam huggers.

The dams were initially approved by Congress in the 1940’s. But the Bureau of Reclamation and the Army Corps of Engineers thought they were not worth the expense. The combined use of passage for barges and hydroelectric diminished their effectiveness. But when the funding was slipped into a secret plan despite Eisenhower’s disapproval, they got built.

So, the outrage Congressman Russ Fulcher exclaims at the deal agreed to replace these dams’ energy production should be considered in the history of how these concrete fiascoes got built.

Nobody was listened to when Ice Harbor got funded.

Then Lower Monumental and Little Goose followed.

And the salmon runs died off.

Then Little Granite and now we have multimillion dollar salmon recovery efforts, hatchery fish, and our economies are about what they were.

So, you want to kill the salmon for what?

Bull Schmidt, Congressman. I’d be glad to say it to your face.