Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Is Tom Cookman Blaming Mark Lovelace For Fall Of Pacific Lumber?

Local conservative activist Tom Cookman  who regularly appears on KINS Community Comment has decided to attack 3rd district supervisor Mark Lovelace for not calling him back. Cookman also seems to blame Mark Lovelace for Pacific Lumber cutting beyond the rate of growth and going out of business. I’m not sure why Cookman blames Lovelace instead of Charles Hurwitz?
Play the audio of Cookman’s latest community comment and tell me where I’ve gone wrong interpreting this. Was it not Hurwitz that stole the retirement funds of Pacific Lumber?  Wasn’t it Hurwitz that turned the entire company into nothing but junk bonds?  Didn’t they cut faster than the rate of growth just to pay the interest on the bonds?

If Mark Lovelace hasn’t returned the calls of Tom Cookman, that is a legitimate gripe. To blame Lovelace on the collapse of Pacific Lumber seems to be grasping at straws. I’m sure someone will set me straight on this.


  1. Lovelace was the spokesman for Humboldt Watershed Council which became a major player in the enviros profitable war against Maxxam. Mark was among those enviros who refused to help Bear River's Heartlands Project that would have ended Maxxam's ownership of PL by buying the whole works outright and forming a partnership with PL workers so they could in turn form their own PL employee owned ESOP. Lovelace and HWC could have saved a great many PL jobs as the Heartlands Project had a Palco conversion that opened up new products instead of relying on cutting old growth which would have been more protected than under the new owner Humboldt Redwood Company, which Mark backed while turning a deaf ear to Native American ownership plan to recover PL as lost ancestral lands.

    Mark was fully into PL while at HWC but never once tried to contact us about our Heartlands Project. No, Lovelace wasn't responsible for PL's demise directly and the ghost town of Scotia now, but he deliberately ignored a Native American alternative plan while running his campaign for political office riding on environmental concern image necessary to win in his Prog dominated District.

  2. Bear River's Heartlands Project:

    The above link is from Stephen's blog (correct me if I'm wrong Stephen)

    I am sure there are many people that did now know about all of this. How the local natives were trying to get the Chinese to bank roll their ambitious plans. Fascinating. Still, as a spokesperson for an enviro group, how was Lovelace able to put a stop to the Chinese takeover of Pacific Lumber lands? If not a take over, what were the Chinese getting out of the deal? Maybe you didn't make it worth their while?

    Were there not politicians involved in this?

  3. The only people acting as politicians were your enviro buddies who didn't give a rat's ass for Bear River's Native American plan to recover thousands of acres of ancestral land. And no, the Chinese we talked to were enthusiastic until Evergreen became another target for your buds and they packed up, closed the plant and left town with bitterness which was unfortunately translated afterwards into screwing Evergreen Pulp workers--more political fall-out, again due in my opinion to your enviro buds at the helm of Enviro Allowed Businesses in Humboldt County. No one will know what could have happened if Heartlands were given support instead of attack by local enviros. The fact that Heartlands was a Native American project and local enviros are mostly all white doesn't really set well with "progressive" environmental protection. Chinese couldn't own PL but they could fund Bear River ownership. It's unfortunate that local enviros acted so selfishly when it came to sharing environmental protection efforts re Headwaters Forest which enviros came to believe they owned instead of the rightful lost ownership of the tribes that were decimated who comprise the descendant members of the Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria. Heartlands had two foes working against them: enviros and the casino gang that gained political control of Bear River and shut Heartlands down because it was a project sponsored by a childhood rival of the current notorious B.R. Chairperson who couldn't stand to be shown up, i.e. petty internal politics were as deadly to Heartlands as anything else. It's a shame that Heartlands never could get traction as the economy of Humboldt County would not be in the sad shape it's in if we had gotten backing to completely revamp PL into an employee owned Palco Community Corporation using our Lifeline Lottery system (which the Chinese were most interested in) to pay back all Chinese very low interest loans.

  4. Well there you have it. The local enviro's are more powerful than an entire tribe of Native Americans, the gambling community, Pacific Lumber, the Chinese and Charles Hurwitz.

  5. Nice try at spin, Tom, but did you actually read what I wrote? If you did you'd see that Heartlands Project was stopped officially by the Chairperson of Bear River. This person headed the B.R.'s Casino Commission when Heartlands was officially backed by the B.R. Tribal Council and even then the Casino Commission attacked our project. After gaining Chairperson position, establishing the Gallegos/Prog Enviro tie-in to this Chairperson, the Bowman Casino-Hotel developer whose work gives such pleasure to the eyes of all who drive by, not to mention the 40% the Tribe pays to Bowman Hotel loans while paying Tribal members only 10%, btw, this is ultimate place where Heartlands failed. But to Sparky and me, the tie between enviros and Gallegos and Leonard Bowman's Chairperson position are there for all to see. Fellow Prog Gangster, Mitch over at Heraldo is currently censoring my post reporting on enviro ethnic cleansing of Headwaters Forest. Again, lest the image be tarnishes just as you are trying to do with your spin of my post above.

  6. I did read what you wrote but had so many questions that I took the easy way out. I only censor people that outright lie or are too disgusting in their personal attacks for me to stomach. You have a lot of information that I have not heard of before. I have know of parts and pieces but you paint a larger picture of what happened after Hurwitz stole everyone’s retirement accounts. Most of what I know revolves around his takeover and destruction of the company. I invite you to enlighten all of us on this after story that many of us are ignorant of. If anyone has a rebuttal or wants to refute what you say they can also share that here on my blog. You don’t seem to be arguing about the front end of the story where Maxxam and Hurwitz stole the money so I have no problem with letting you spill the rest of the story.

  7. Working with the Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria has been a real eye opener for this European-American. You hear and read about racial and ethnic prejudice a lot these days but seeing it in action is something else again. I had assumed that "my people", counterculture types, were totally above such things, but, no, prejudice and unthinking participation in the ongoing silent genocide of this local Native American tribe is just what I've witnessed with the treatment given to the Bear River Band's Heartlands group by Headwaters environmental activists who have acted towards the Bear River Tribe as if they were unwanted competition for radical environmentalist control of Headwaters Forest.

    The Heartlands project was the inspiration of Bear River tribal member, poet, artist, and medicine man in training, Donald "Sparkly" Bernard, for the creation of an inter-tribal spiritual recovery sanctuary where Native-American tribal elders and medicine people from across the continent could come and teach their traditional ways in at pristine forest environment in one section of the Headwaters Forest Complex area. I contributed the provisional environmental forest management plan that outlined the Tribe's major forestry goals. The final forest management plan would be made only after a long moratorium period (5 to 25 years) to do in-depth studies for the stewardship of the life of the land from a Native American perspective.

    The provisional Heartlands plan called for: 1) the permanent setting aside of all Headwaters old-growth groves as Sacred Ground which would protect them forever instead of 50 years as the current Headwaters Deal provides, 2) creation of new climax or late seral forests along all fish-bearing streams throughout the 60,000 acres of Headwaters Forest, 3) creation of working buffer zones with a very slow harvest rotation period (200 years) that would surround all climax forest areas, and 4) creation of truly sustainable slow harvest rotation period (80 years) timber production areas that would not only provide income for the Tribe forever plus provide funds to purchase land adjacent to the existing Rancheria site for community development (the Tribe has no intention of using Headwaters land for tribal living space), but would also insure habitat for all species native to Headwaters Forest, not just old-growth dependent species.*

    * We found Headwaters environmentalists' forest management plan too heavily biased towards maximizing old-growth tree production throughout the Headwaters area which is fine for old-growth dependent species but biologically unsound for long-term forest health. Selective logging for old-growth characteristics progressively decreases sunlight reaching the forest floor as old-growth trees grow shading out competing vegetation. This in turn decreases habitat conditions for the remaining species which is why Nature and Native Americans in the past- before fire suppression policies- periodically set fire to the forests in order to provide habitat conditions for all stages of the Climax forest cycle, not just the late seral stage.

    I also worked with Sharon Orona, a former Native American activist who had worked for the State setting up the California Lottery system, on a plan for the creation of a tribally-owned and operated statewide Headwaters Lottery system that would have provided the enormous capital needed for the purchase of all 60,000 acres of Headwaters Forest.

  8. Tried to publish my report but it's not posting--broke it up into smaller sections still not posting..

  9. I don't know why it's not posting. It has let you post a lot already and good stuff I might add. I am not blocking anything so far. Try again.

  10. This didn't post before and goes before the section that did post which is above;

    The Ethnic Cleansing of Headwaters Forest

    (Report written in 1998)

    This report is included here to historically record hidden racism and silent genocidal policy towards Native Americans at the hands of environmental activists in the 1990's in Humboldt County.

    Reading the latest promos marketing Julia Butterfly made me think about the difference between two movies I've seen recently on the Bosnia civil war. In one, "Welcome to Sarejevo", Woody Harrelson plays a hot-shot war correspondent on the front lines of battle in Sarejevo. In the other, "Shot through the Heart", two lesser known actors play two best friends caught on opposite sides of the civil war carried out in Kosovo.

    "Welcome to Sarejevo" is a fairly pointless exploitation movie (Gee, ain't it awful, but look at me, folks, am I a hero here risking my neck or what...) while "Shot through the Heart" puts you right in the heart of the ethnic cleansing horror. The movie haunts you afterwards with questions of justice and revenge and how it is that otherwise normal civilized human beings can fall so quickly into total barbarism.

    Like Woody Harrelson, Julia Butterfly and a host of other Earth First! glory seekers have come from all over the country to exploit the Headwaters Forest crisis as their "good cause" ticket to national public recognition and stardom. And thanks to the now professionally slick Earth First! promotion teams, their efforts receive great publicity but actually do very little to help stop the cutting of old-growth trees on Pacific Lumber Co. land.

    In the past thirteen years of Earth First! protest demonstrations, rallies, media stars and stunts, plus lawsuit after lawsuit filed by the Environmental Protection Information Center against PL, over three quarters of all the old-growth trees still standing on PL land when Earth First! and Chas. Hurlwitz first locked horns are now gone . The only old-growth trees saved on PL lands are the ones he and politicians agree to save his way. For all their noise and show radical protest efforts do not save trees.

    Radical environmental actions have only intensified the Timber War between timber communities and environmentalists as the needless death of David Chain sadly demonstrates. Unfortunately, another negative consequence of radical activism in the Headwaters conflict has been the joining of the environmental movement which is composed primarily of white Americans of European descent with the on-going European-American policy of ethnic cleansing of Native-Americans from any and all native land whose natural wealth is wanted by the European-Americans.

  11. In public, Headwaters environmental leaders would give lip service to helping the Tribe but no help was ever actually given to us and several times Wayne Moon, Bear River Tribal Council Vice-Chairperson, and myself were told to shut up about our Heartlands project at Head-waters meetings sponsored by these groups. Rumors also floated back to us that the Tribe was in cahoots with Pacific Lumber Co. and would log everything they could once they got title to Headwaters land.

    Earth First! leader Darryl Cherney even went so far as to write the Tribal Council urging them to fire me. Several Earth First! and EPIC members visited the Tribal Council early on seemingly far more interested in seeing if Bear River's Headwaters plan could be brought into the radical environmentalists' war against Hurlwitz and Maxim than in helping the Tribe regain their ancestral land now called Headwaters Forest. They didn't get very far with the Council with that agenda so later on Headwaters environmentalists went to the Arcata-based Seventh Generation Fund to see if they, as a local Native American organization, could control the development of Bear River's Heartlands project.

    Using Indians against Indians is an old well known tactic and Bear River walked out when the director of Seventh Generation Fund parroted Cherney's demand for my removal from the Heartlands project. After our Heartlands project was stymied for lack of start-up funding and then crippled when the Tribe's casino financier managed to persuade the Tribal Council to put our project on hold indefinitely while seemingly endless casino negotiations were going on between the State and California gaming tribes, Headwaters activists seized the opportunity of our public absence to spawn "Native Americans for Headwaters", with a long-time SoHum activist who isn't a member of any Native-American tribe as far as we know, as its main spokesperson.

    To date, no one at the Bear River Tribal Council has ever been contacted by Native Americans for Headwaters. It seems to be a puppet organization sponsored by SoHum Headwaters activists to neutralize the authentic local Native American effort to reclaim Headwaters as part of the Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria's tribal heritage. In still another attempt to thwart Bear River's Heartlands Project, when we asked to be included in a major joint meeting of the Rose Foundation and dozens of environmental groups, one prominent organization spokesperson (EPIC) demanded my absence at the meeting which of course angered the B.R. Tribal Council because I was their official Headwaters representative. We were going to ask for financial help from the Rose Foundation which held 5 million dollars in trust for buying out Headwaters.

    Ethnic cleansing is still going on right here in Humboldt County. In California, attempts to finish off tribes is done quietly now, no one's getting killed directly, but European-Americans still author laws and politically manipulate behind the scenes to take away the land bases of California tribal communities. Bear River's plight is typical of the many small California tribes.

    There are about 250 enrolled Bear River tribal members. They are somehow supposed to be sardined into a tiny 60 acre rancheria, or mini-reservation, when their former homelands comprised over 400,000 acres of Humboldt forest, grasslands, rivers, and coasts that they were the stewards of for thousands of years. There isn't adequate housing or development capital for community services or tribal employment so most Bear River tribal members are forced to live off the rez or leave the area, even the State sometimes, to find work and housing.

  12. This process slowly but surely destroys tribal cohesion and tribal culture. And this is how quiet genocide, the quiet ethnic cleansing of unwanted Native Americans and their unique tribal communities from the land and its wealth desired by the dominant European-American community. Tribal attempts to recover lost ancestral territory are blocked at every turn.

    I first made contact with the Tribe in 1990 by responding to a news article about the Bear River Band's difficulties with local land owners when they tried to find someone willing to sell them land for their rancheria site since their old one was reduced to little more than an acre and a half when tribal members sold their tribal trust allotments to pay land taxes after the Tribe was illegally terminated along with dozens of other smaller California tribal bands in the 1960's.

    I once wrote and asked Julia Butterfly if she would use her vast publicity to help Bear River regain their lost ancestral land and implement their Heartlands plan as not only the most feasible way of protecting all 60,000 acres of Headwaters Forest but for social justice reasons as well and I explained how the Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria came about as one of the results of the Indian Island massacre period last century when European-Americans brought ethnic cleansing to the Northcoast every bit as savage and horrible as anything seen in Bosnia.

    This environmental superstar in her 24 years of wisdom told me she won't work with people holding anger from past hurts but assured me she has "unconditional love" for all concerned. I told her I would relay that on to Sparky who sits not free in a tree with the world watching and massive public support plus radio, TV, magazine interviews, songs, book and movie deals, prestigious awards, honorary degrees, etc., etc., etc., but confined to his cell in prison.

    Donald "Sparky" Brenard was denied early release for refusing to cut his long hair because of his traditional Native American beliefs. A class action suit against the State penal system was recently lost on this very issue and Sparky is now due to released in December.

    A lot has happened with the Tribe since we were forced to put the Heartlands project on hold. The Tribe is embroiled in controversy over the casino project the Tribal Council went with when their gaming financier nixed our Headwaters Lottery plan that was essential to the Heartland project. And, of course, the Headwaters Deal has gone through, vastly benefiting Chas. Hurlwitz and Maxxam despite the years of radical environmental protests and lawsuits.

    Sparky, myself, and Sharon Orona are still up for resurrecting the Heartlands project but we will need all the help we can get. Wayne Moon's term of office was up last year and he left the State to find employment. The rest of the Tribal Council is having serious problems trying to get their casino project going which, unlike our proposed lottery operation, has stirred up strong neighborhood and County government resistance.

  13. Our Heartlands project worked with another tribal gaming financier who wants to buy out the current one if the Tribal Council agrees which could mean we could again move forward with the Heartlands plan. Sparky and I have also discussed going back to the original Headwaters Lottery proposal which called for establishing a partnership between the Bear River tribe and a new Pacific Lumber Co. ESOP organization that could jointly buy out all of PL and return the company to truly local community ownership and control.

    Also, there is the intriguing fact that our Heartlands project made sure that the Bear River Band is on record with both California and U.S. government Headwaters negotiating agencies as a principle party whose inclusion is legally necessary in any final determination for the dispensation of federally acquired land. By law, the government negotiations should have included Bear River representatives yet the Tribe was never consulted. This may constitute legal grounds for re-opening the Headwaters Deal.

    Sparky and I have come to see that even though we each come from very different cultural heritages we are still brothers of the same Great Spirit who desires all of us to heal the life of the land. Because of my previous communitarian experience and spiritual orientation I never had much difficulty being accepted by the Tribe and adjusting to the tribal way of doing things. I worked directly with the Bear River Tribal Council for almost four years. I offer this not to brag about my own accomplishment but to give it as an example that models the possibility of forming now what should have formed 150 years ago- a partnership between Native and new Americans for the cooperative stewardship of the life of the land in all watersheds of our Northcoast region.

    So the next time you read another article promoting Ms. Julia Butterfly's career, you might stop and ask yourself why Headwaters environmentalists give you with so much information about this young woman from Arkansas and about their own Headwaters agenda but absolutely nothing about the Bear River tribe's Heartlands project which they have known about since 1995.

    You then might consider what you can do to stop contributing to the quiet genocide of the most ruthlessly attacked species of our redwood forest region, the key species that kept our forests in the supreme condition European-Americans found them last century, our own local Native Americans whose culture and perhaps very genes still carry unique localized adaptations to our Northcoast's forest environment. This is complete environmental restoration and true holistic ecology. If Sparky's Heartlands vision inspires you too and you wish to help make Heartlands a reality, please contact us via e-mail at: mosherosh@juno.com

    eel_river_rez_map.jpg (47632 bytes)

    An 80,000 acre "Eel River Indian Reservation" was proposed and submitted to Congress by U.S. Indian Agent Redick McKee in 1851. The reservation proposal was rejected by Congress and nine years later one of the largest massacres of Native Americans in U.S. history took place right here in Humboldt Bay.

    The Bear River Band of Rohnerville Rancheria is composed of remnants of five "Eel River Indian" tribes- Wiyot, Bear River, Mattole, Nongatl, and Northern Sinkyone. The last three tribes are now extinct. Smaller map shows the 60,000 acre Headwaters Forest inset (black outlined area with stipples) to show comparative size and location of the proposed Eel River Indian Reservation and Headwaters Forest.)

    All of this information can be verified by former Bear River Tribal Council Vice-Chairperson Wayne Moon, former B.R. Tribal Administrator, Barbara Orr, and of course, my Heartlands partner, Bear River's spiritual leader, Don "Sparky" Brenard.

  14. Wow! Thanks for the history lesson.

  15. I got a message from Mark Lovelace on my facebook. He said:

    Hi Tom. Just want to let you know that Tommy Cookman has never, ever, ever called me. Period. I also just did a search of my e-mail and cannot find any record of him ever having sent me an e-mail.

    1. Tom, I can't speak to Cookman's specific claims but I have personally left numerous calls for Mark, sent letters, and stopped him in the courthouse hall, all requesting to have a meaningful conversation. I have never received any response whatsoever. I also know several other people (other than Cookman who I think is a blowhard anyway) whose word I absolutely trust who have had the same experience with mark. To be fair, Mark knows we disagree and that he is unlikely to change my mind or me his. Unfortunately without talking you never find a middle ground. I believe that Mark would rather lose than compromise. Too bad, imagine how much better things could be if we tried to get along even if that meant that we didn't get everything we want.

  16. Anonymous, thanks for addressing my main concern. Not that the story Stephen tells is not interesting or relevant, it's just that it didn't answer my question about Cookman. I have had many conversations with Mark Lovelace and have found him very approachable. As far as getting along with those that disagree with us or having meaningful conversations with them, I would be in favor of that. Unfortunately at the top in Washington, Obama has been trying to have conversations with and find middle ground with the Republicans for over 3 years now. Republicans have admitted that they don't care to have a discussion and that their main goal is to make Obama a one term president. That is the other side as I hear them and so I don't blame any progressive for ignoring those that call Republicans their leaders.

  17. Tom, I hear what you are saying as it applies to the Washington elite on both sides. I don't get how it applies to Lovelace's well known practice of refusing to talk to anyone who disagrees with him. Personally, I do not like Mark, his ethics, or his goals. Am I unwilling to try to find ways to compromise? Nope, I'll work with the devil if it creates a better future for my kids and the kids of our county. I may not like it but that's what responsible adults who want to improve the world are willing to do. Unfortunately Mark is not so inclined. I think we can learn much from those we disagree with in fact that concept is at the core of what our founding fathers based our country on. Imagine if Jefferson and Adams refused to bother with any of their historic debates? The compromises that resulted never would exist and we might all be serfs for English lords. I'm glad you find Mark approachable, consider that that is because you generally agree. If one only hangs with those we agree with we accomplish nothing. Most of the great accomplishments of civilization actually evolved out of conflict. Besides, whether he likes it or not Mark is paid just as much to return the calls of constituents he disagrees with as he is to return those of those he doesn't. Thats the job.


US Senator Joe Liberman, WTC 7 Did Not Occur