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From 2 February 2003 Issue

The Regular Poop from Yellowstone
By Greg Lawson - ParkStRanger@aol.com 

This last week, CNN reported that park officials at Yellowstone National Park were "steamed" about the Metamucil commercial currently being televised. The commercial shows a group of visitors at Old Faithful asking a Ranger what makes the geyser so regular. The scene changes to the Ranger secretly pouring a glass of Metamucil into the geyser.

Yellowstone Ranger Al Nash was quoted as saying, "It suggests that it's OK to pour some substance into a thermal feature. We've spent decades trying to educate visitors about the fact that it's harmful to the feature and that it's dangerous for anyone to take an action like that."

The makers of Metamucil responded that park officials should chill out, that the commercial was obviously a joke.

Also this last week, on Wednesday, January 29th, park rangers assisted the Montana Department of Livestock to capture and send to slaughter two bull bison. The National Park Service has assisted these cattle ranchers to kill thousands of bison in the last couple of decades using the excuse that bison might pass the disease brucellosis to cattle.

There won't be cattle grazing on the public lands near Yellowstone until June, and theoretically, only infected pregnant female bison could pass this disease, but there has never been a case of bison passing brucellosis to bison in the wild. These bulls were killed for no good reason. One of the most important "features" of Yellowstone, the last wild free roaming bison are being killed for no good reason.

And park officials are worried that visitors will be inspired by a joke commercial to pour a laxative into a geyser? Come on.

The National Parks and Conservation Association, a watchdog group on National Parks, just released its list of the ten most endangered parks in our country. Yellowstone made it again. I have forgotten how many years it has been on the list. Yellowstone faces incredible noise and air pollution from snowmobile traffic which pollutes the air and endangers the wildlife. Rangers at the entrance gates often wear gas masks and have fresh air pumped into their booths because of the carbon monoxide.

The Clinton administration tried to ban snowmobiles in the park but the Bush regime has overturned that ban. The town of West Yellowstone, Montana, is the snowmobile capital of the world. There are snowmobile rental places on every block. Everyday during the winter, an average of 800 of these loud, smoky vehicles enter the park. The proposed Bush regulations places a "limit" of 1100 snowmobiles per day to enter the park. Gee, an increase of 300 machines doesn't sound very "limiting" to me.

And park officials are worried people might pour laxatives into geysers?

Perhaps Yellowstone park officials need a good dose of Metamucil to flush their heads out of their @$$#$.

To learn more about the Yellowstone bison situation, go to the site of the Buffalo Field Campaign (my favorite activist group) at www.wildrockies.org/buffalo
Buffalo Field Campaign

The BFC recently received a matching grant for their work to stop the slaughter. If you can afford a donation, write the word "Match" on your check. If the National Park Service is unable to protect the animal which is its own symbol, maybe with our help these brave activists can.

Go on to Neo-McCarthyism, the Patriot Act, and the New Surveillance Culture By Dr. Steve Best
Return to 2 February 2003 Issue
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