Graphic Witness: visual arts & social commentary
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A Political Contradictionary from A to Z

How to extricate one's self or one's nation from a quagmire? Answer: When you find yourself in a hole, stop digging. However, the question in the real world does not admit of any easy solution, like stopping digging, and becomes instead, why the digging continues, with occasional reference to who started digging in the first place.

Like the answer to the riddle, "When is a door not a door?", the letter from the quaintly named U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service (USDA FS) is initiating 'scoping' for a Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) to reinstate the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception of the Colorado Roadless Rule. This specific exception allows for temporary road construction for coal exploration and/or coal-related surface activities in a 19,100-acre area defined as the North Fork Coal Mining Area. The FS will use the SDEIS to address specific deficiencies that were identified by the District Court of Colorado.
Stated another way, the alphabetical USDA FS wants a SDEIS to 'scope' public sentiment on building a road, even a temporary road, into a region declared to be road-free. Loopholes in the regulations suggest that no matter the Colorado court's decisions upholding 'roadlessness' in the area, the coal companies will find a way to pave their way. See Public Scoping LTR.pdf

This beautiful Q initial letter is "part of a 'Grotesque Alphabet' in which letters are formed by groupings of human figures and animals. What distinguishes this particular engraving is that it is one of the first sharply barbed social comments in the history of prints. It depicts two heavily armored knights slashing at one another while two unfortunate peasants are trampled beneath their horses."
Ralph Shikes, The Indignant Eye
When the elephants fight, the grass suffers. -- African proverb