There is a jaw-droppingly stupid bit in this morning's NYT story, "New Rule on Endangered Species in the Southwest." I would ask what this Bush administration official was thinking, except that I already know that the administration would like to see the endangered species act dismantled entirely. So this really isn't about thinking:
Dale Hall, the director of the southwestern region, in a memorandum dated Jan. 27, said that all decisions about how to return a species to robust viability must use only the genetic science in place at the time it was put on the endangered species list - in some cases the 1970's or earlier - even if there have been scientific advances in understanding the genetic makeup of a species and its subgroups in the ensuing years.
There is a notable passage earlier on:
Mr. Hall's ruling fits squarely into the theory advanced by the Pacific Legal Foundation, a property-rights group in California, that endangered species be considered as one genetic unit for purposes of being put on the endangered species list and in subsequent management plans.
Remember the Pacific Legal Foundation? I ask again, what is wrong with these people?