What Will Dirk Do?
Well, the ball is most definitely in Dirk's court. The question is, will he take a shot of his own, or take a pass and save his capital for some other battle?
The stakes are definitely high. Some might argue that the reversion of the National Park Service's Management Policies to a form much closer to the intent of the agency's Organic Act will make it much harder for snowmobiles to make substantial inroads into Yellowstone National Park. And what does it mean for personal watercraft use in the national parks and seashores? If indeed the Park Service's prime mandate is conservation of resources, will the agency come down against these motorized forms of recreation? Or will the agency forward an argument that conservation and preservation are two very different things?
Surely, during the next three weeks while the NPS collects input from its field personnel on the latest format of the MPs the folks at the American Recreation Coalition and the Blue Ribbon Coalition, lobbyists for the motorized recreational communities, won't concede the matter to preservationists.
But, in light of the national opposition that was generated against the revisions to the Management Policies, the recent survey by the Coalition for National Park Service Retirees, the unflattering Vanity Fair article that examined Paul Hoffman's role and motivation for revising the MPs, and the latest Associated Press package of stories on the plight of the national parks, it all might be too much for the new Interior secretary to buck the tide and toss aside the latest version.
Stay tuned, for the weeks and months ahead promise to be quite intriguing.