Sunday, June 26, 2022

Play

Pregnancy could now be the only option in Florida, more landmark privacy-related cases are now in the balance, and just how pro-LGBTQ are your local businesses?

Play

Gun reform suffers a defeat in the Supreme Court but notches a win in the U.S. Senate, former Justice Dept. officials testify before the Jan. 6 Committee, and the White House meets with big oil on high pump prices.

Play

COVID funding kept rural hospitals open, cryptocurrency companies make inroads on the backroads of America, and rural communities' efforts to escape long-term poverty have unintended side effects.

Conservationists Call Out Extremist Group for Dispensing Disinformation

Play

Thursday, April 21, 2022   

Disinformation has sadly become a part of American political discourse, but one environmental organization is calling out a group of anti-government extremists for spinning false narratives.

The Center for Western Priorities published a report this week tracking several "fake news" stories about the 30x30 Initiative tied to President Joe Biden's America the Beautiful campaign.

Aaron Weiss, deputy director of the Center, said a group named American Stewards of Liberty (ASL) has made it its mission to undercut the plan to protect 30% of public lands by 2030.

"It's a very coordinated campaign," Weiss observed. "And it's one that we really see one group, American Stewards of Liberty, acting as a bridge between the extremists and more mainstream anti-conservation politicians."

Weiss pointed out one of its stated goals is the "delisting" of endangered species. ASL is holding a "Stop 30x30 Summit" this weekend to further plan its campaign to convince local governments to reject proposals to protect private lands. ASL did not respond to a request for comment on this story.

Weiss noted his organization has been monitoring ASL since its formation about a year ago, and has tracked public lands extremism since the 2016 takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

He said ASL often uses scare tactics on local officials to achieve its goals.

"American Stewards of Liberty brought them a crazy story about the risk of a protected species, the American burying beetle," Weiss recounted. "And said, 'Oh no, if this beetle shows up, then other farms might have to protect it as well. And we couldn't have that in our county.' "

Weiss emphasized the group is well-funded but runs its disinformation campaign in the shadows.

"It truly is about sunlight," Weiss asserted. "Making sure folks know the extent of this coordinated effort, making sure that folks know when American Stewards of Liberty shows up in your county. Here is the disinformation book that they're going to bring, that they're going to try to sell county commissioners."

According to the report, ASL has ties to prominent right-wing politicians and causes, including Congress members Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., and Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., Rep. Ken Ivory, R-West Jordan (Utah), and the American Petroleum Institute.


get more stories like this via email
Gov. Kathy Hochul signed Alyssa's Law Thursday, saying it is one of many new safety measures she plans to adopt, to keep New Yorkers safe from gun violence. (Office of the Governor)

Social Issues

Gov. Kathy Hochul has approved a new law, requiring schools to consider installing a silent, panic-alarm system. Approval of what's known as …


Social Issues

Democrats, Republicans and other political parties in Utah hold primary elections Tuesday, and advocates for older voters are promoting the …

Environment

A report from leaders in Washington state lays out how the services of four dams on the lower Snake River could be replaced in order to save ailing sa…


The new AARP Pennsylvania poll finds 87% of voters age 50 years and older say they're "extremely motivated" to vote in the November election. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

There are fewer than five months to go until the November General Election, in which Pennsylvania voters will select a new governor and U.S. Senator…

Health and Wellness

The State of Indiana wants to learn more about Hoosiers' experiences with substance-use disorder and addiction-recovery services. Administered by …

The price of meat has gone up 12.3% in the last year. (Fxquadro/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Seven in 10 Americans view inflation as the most pressing issue facing the nation right now, and in Maine, a new report seeks to explore the causes…

Social Issues

Iowa is getting more than $9 million to improve its system of care for stroke patients, and to address staffing issues among public-health workers in …

Health and Wellness

The Food and Drug Administration could soon ban the manufacture and sale of menthol cigarettes, a move advocates in Ohio said could have a positive …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021