Podcast: I Spy Minute – Grassroots Touchdown

Posted on May 4, 2012 by


It wasn’t long ago that it looked like the effort to remove four perfectly good hydro-electric dams on the Klamath River was a slam dunk. In fact, Sec. of the Interior, Ken Salazar, proudly proclaimed in 2009 that “The effort to remove the Klamath dams will not fail.”

It’s not over yet, but it hit a major stumbling block when a whistleblower, one of the top scientists in the federal government, was fired after he dared to say the Dept. was mischaracterizing the science behind the removal effort. In March of this year, Salazar tabled the decision indefinitely.

Dr. Paul Houser is being honored for his courage and decision to take a stand May 6th and May 7th (see the calendar links on www.klamathbasincrisis.org for more details) but it’s a win by the entire grassroots effort.

We’re rebroadcasting our interview with Dr. Houser tomorrow on the I Spy Radio Show.

Take a listen: I Spy Minute Fri May 4 2012

Or read the transcript, below.

Yesterday, I talked about the power of one person taking a stand: Dr. Paul Houser, whose whistle-blowing derailed the effort to remove the Klamath dams.

But the real power was in numbers. Paul couldn’t have stood up if it hadn’t been for others all speaking their truth.

Like the other scientists who gave honest, scientific assessments rather than giving in to political pressure. Their efforts gave Paul the foundation on which to stand.

And all of the hundreds of grassroots activists who kept fighting, who never gave up despite the odds.

Paul only joined the Bureau in April of last year; if the grassroots hadn’t stood up, hadn’t delayed it long enough, it might have gone through before he ever got on the job.

If you happen to be in the area or know people who are, he’s speaking in Klamath Falls on May 6th and in Yreka on the 7th. See klamathbasincrisis.org for more details.

This is a celebration not just of Paul standing up but of all the people who stood up.

Just like in football: one person crosses the goal line with the ball. But it’s the team that gets him there.