Nov. 21, 2011

November 21, 2011  Crane Path Action Report

It was still dark this morning when about a dozen of us headed up the mountain by the light of our headlamps.  We arrived at the new campsite at 6:15 in the early dawn light, with a sliver of moon showing, and an orange bar of light above the eastern horizon. Walking out onto the crane path is like walking onto a moonscape.  Barren, grey rock fragments and twisted remnants of tree roots are all that remain of the thriving forest that stood here less than two months ago.  In the face of such destruction it helps to keep busy, so we retrieved the American flag and Vermont State Flag from the tent and set them up on our site; built a fire, and re-set some of the boundary marking tape that had blown loose from thecairns.  As the fire blazed up to warm us from the chilly morning breeze, construction vehicles began to grind past us, headlights bright in the dim dawn.  We collected firewood, built up the fire, and watched as the huge rock moving trucks and other construction vehicles roared past us and began the day’s work.  We waved to the driver in each vehicle and got a lot of waves in return.  We figured that if nothing else, we had made this Monday morning more interesting than past ones for the folks who work up here.  We hope they see from our presence that there is a serious problem with the project they are working on, but we don’t know, because none of them stopped to talk with us.

It wasn’t until after 8:30 that GMP security arrived, told us we were on private property, and departed to park at a nearby vantage point and monitor our actions.  Several other pickup trucks were also positioned to allow their drivers to watch what we were doing.

We were surprised that our presence so close to the roadway, heavy equipment and loads of rock was not a safety concern for supervisors.  It wasn’t until nearly 9:00 that the Sheriff arrived.  We sang the Vermont State Song, then listened as the sheriff explained that he had to read us the injunction and then we would have to leave or be arrested.  Ron pointed out that we were trespassing and asked him if he was obligated to arrest us for trespassing, and he said no, but that we would be charged with both trespassing and violating the TRO if we didn’t leave.

So we heard the injunction read to us, straining to hear over the racket of the trucks roaring by.  We were escorted across the construction line, put away our flags, and departed.  As we left, we could see GMP officials at our new site.  The smell of burning balsam alerted us that they had torn up our trees and thrown them on the fire.  Another, more toxic, but less upsetting smell, told us that our boundary tape was also burning.  Chris dropped back to try to photograph the destruction, but was hustled away by the Sheriff.

So here’s the irony.  GMP is confident enough of their control of this land, the courts and the government that they can blow up and irrevocably destroy this disputed land.  But they are not confident enough about their ownership of the land to arrest us for standing there, ten feet from their trucks.  They could not make it more clear that they have no right to be destroying this landscape than by relying on the injunction to clear us out.

In truth, based on some recent calculations, we could move sixteen feet further into the crane path (which would completely obstruct it) and still be on disputed property.  Discussion is ramping up about taking action to reclaim this part of the crane path.  Stay tuned.  We learned a lot this morning and will be back soon.

Submitted by Fisher


8 comments on “Nov. 21, 2011

  1. Sam Smithson says:

    I love how you guys get so pissed when the cops or the GMP people come over to your campsite, yet you have no problem going onto the new road, GMP land, and turbine areas. Hypocrites!

    • ShyErin says:

      I love how anyone could think that they have the right to just take a piece of this Earth and unnecessarily destroy it. GMP has no respect for this Mountain nor its inhabitants and only cares about thier own profit.Something as crazy as this project that will destroy the mountian, its wildlife, precious water supply + much more and your concerned about calling out these people “hypocrites”.

      People who still have thier connection with this beautiful planet we call home must stand up and protect it!

      And to those of you like Sam Smithson who may be more concerned with who’s pissed at what and calling people names than having concern for this Earth that has provided us all with a home and our basic needs to survive for all our existence, you may want to check yourself. Correct me if I am wrong Sam Smithson, but are you not one of those who has gone astray from your connection with the Earth?

      All this information out there and this is what you have to say

      “I love how you guys get so pissed when the cops or the GMP people come over to your campsite, yet you have no problem going onto the new road, GMP land, and turbine areas. Hypocrites!”

      When was the last time you got in touch with nature,had a connection with the piece 0f Earth you live on?

      What it seems so many people have a problem with is living on this Earth like the Human race is the only thing thats alive, like we are all of existence, forgetting all that we are truly connected too. Those of you who have not forgotten, that are still connected, spread the word, share this with all.

      Peace, Love and Let Mountains be Mountains!

  2. pgosselin says:

    Keep up the full-court press. If the 16-foot boundary is as you claim, then GMP is trespassing and thus ought to be booted off that property in question. I’m pledging to make a modest donation for legal costs should they arrest you, and hopefully others sympathetic to the cause will join me. No one should be afraid to get arrested defending their property – that’s a Vermont right. Eventually the courts will decide it. You have nothing to fear.

    But it’s a bit confusing to whom donations should be made should you get arrested. Nelson’s legal fund? or the Dave and Trevor fund? You ought to consolidate all this. Please clear this point up.

  3. pgosselin says:

    They may bark a lot – but legally it’s very very risky for them to bite.
    They know that this issue is unresolved and so they know they may very well be violating property rights, and have chosen not to give a damn. That’s a very serious matter.

  4. windy says:

    Why is it that the Nelson’s are not up at the site getting arrested – I think sometimes we old folks are letting the kids take the brunt of the punishment.

    • GMP asked the judge to impose a fine on the Nelsons of $5000 a day. The Nelsons have no rights here, they are victims, sued by GMP, not even allowed on their own land. The way the judge set it up, GMP has taken about 150 acres of the Nelsons’ land, and are not paying them a penny but costing the money. It is not their land anymore, it is not their home. GMP now owns Lowell and seem happy to destroy the Nelsons.

  5. Alice says:

    I can’t express how sad I am to read and watch the destruction of your mountains! I can’t imagine what you must be going through. You are brave and courageous! I am SO upset that environment groups won’t scream bloody murder about the destruction of our environment! They have all sold themselves to the DEVIL! Here in Indiana we are being bombarded with wind energy companies too. Our county is in the process of writing a wind energy ordinance and I’m afraid the people and environment will be on the short end of the stick. Why are local officials so BLIND to what is happening? All they see are the short term gains, if there are any, not what becomes of these monstrocities in the future when the $$$ goes away!

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