Sagebrush Sedition: A Novel

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Sunstone Press, 2008 - Fiction - 334 pages
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With world-class scenery, a brand-new National Monument and the rosy prospect of fat tourist dollars, you’d think the citizens of Southern Utah would be happy. But they’re mad! Damn mad. To them the Grand Staircase/Escalante National Monument is nothing more than the political equivalent to a football end run--a blatant land grab. Then when the Bureau of Land Management appoints a dedicated conservationist as the rookie Monument manager, things quickly shift from simmer to boil. Coal miner Angus Macdonald and fur trapper Bucky Lee Eakins will be put out of business but if the environmentalists have their way, and it appears they will, it is also quite probable cattle ranchers Roper Rehnquist and girlfriend, Ruby Nez, will soon follow. Before the BLM can buy back his Monument coal leases, Macdonald is brutally murdered, then Roper’s line cabin is burned to the ground and Assistant Monument Manager Ron Sparks is shot in the head and killed. This is a crime spree unprecedented in the history of U.S. National Monuments. Some think it’s eco-terrorists, but the ranchers are convinced it is a rogue BLM ranger and Monument management strongly suspects a newly formed, covert coalition of disgruntled ranchers. Even though battle lines are quickly drawn, an uneasy unspoken truce settles over the vast new Monument. This fragile peace, however, is instantly shattered when the BLM suddenly revokes Roper and Ruby’s grazing leases. Roper realizes if he doesn’t do something fast, this little local imbroglio could quickly fan into a raging wildfire. It has all the makings of a 20th century range war, the likes of which have not been seen in the West since New Mexico’s Lincoln County war of the late 1800s.

 

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Contents

I
5
II
9
III
15
IV
29
V
42
VI
56
VII
73
VIII
92
XIV
171
XV
186
XVI
202
XVII
216
XVIII
228
XIX
241
XX
256
XXI
269

IX
105
X
117
XI
136
XII
150
XIII
162
XXII
281
XXIII
296
XXIV
310
XXV
325
Copyright

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Page 13 - ... something to be skinned for two or three years for the use of the present generation, whether it is the forest, the water, the scenery. Whatever it is, handle it so that your children's children will get the benefit of it.
Page 13 - IT. WHAT YOU CAN DO is KEEP IT FOR YOUR CHILDREN, YOUR CHILDREN'S CHILDREN, AND FOR ALL WHO COME AFTER YOU, AS THE ONE GREAT SIGHT WHICH EVERY AMERICAN . . . SHOULD SEE.
Page 12 - ... Utah. President Clinton's general response to environmentalists and government officials who were shocked by his executive order ignored the unique nature of the environmentally safe coal at the Utah site. Giving the impression that similar coal was available elsewhere in the United States, he said: I am concerned about a large coal mine proposed for the area. Mining jobs are good jobs and mining is important to our national economy and to our national security. But we can't have mines everywhere...
Page 13 - I will now use my office to accelerate the exchange process. I have directed Secretary Babbitt to consult with Governor Leavitt, Congressman Orton, Senators Bennett and Hatch, to form an exchange working group to respond promptly to all exchange requests and other issues submitted by the state, and to resolve reasonable differences in valuation in favor of the school trust.
Page 9 - Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for being here and for being in such good spirits.
Page 9 - We are following in your footsteps and honoring your ethic today. (Applause.) l want to say a special word of thanks to my longtime friend, Norma Matheson.
Page 13 - ...the beginning of a unique three-year process during which the Bureau of Land Management will work with state and local governments...

About the author (2008)

Growing up in a farming/ranching family in southern Utah, Warren Stucki is very familiar with the ranching lifestyle and the ongoing feud between ranchers and the BLM, land stewards of a large portion of the American west. After leaving southern Utah, Dr. Stucki graduated from the University of Utah Medical School, eventually specializing in urology. He still practices medicine and lives on a small horse ranch just outside of St. George, Utah. Stucki writes in two distinct genres: historical fiction and medical mysteries. His two previous books, Boy’s Pond and Hunting for Hippocrates, were also published by Sunstone Press.

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