Get Up and VOTE!!

Mar. 01, 2000 By Greg Lonero

To quote Springfield's Mayor Quimbie, "Are these people getting dumber or just louder?" This November we get our chance to help silence the ignorant green extremist. I will be the first to tell you that I am not a political analyst but in my readings of several of the ragazines and visits to dealers, there is some hesitation to tell their readers and customers which party to vote for. But I will tell you. When you vote this November, you will want to vote for Republican candidate George W. Bush, the governor from Texas.

If you vote for Al Gore, you are an idiot and if you vote for Ralph Nader you are a bigger idiot and if you have not decided yet, well, I hope you're not the oncoming traffic on the trail because you scare me.

Last year I drove myself nuts trying to rally our troops (manufacturers, dealers and suppliers) to get more involved in the campaign to get the letters flowing to the politicians. And since then, you will note that 2 of the big four, Ski-Doo and Polaris, now have tabs on their home page that offer information on the snowmobile political front, a result of something collective. Ski Doo has letters you can download. I certainly appreciate their marketing efforts in our battle to preserve our right to have access to our public lands. So if you spend time surfing the net and you like to visit the Ski Doo and Polaris web sites, they have supplied you with some tools in your letter campaign. However, if you don't surf the net, their efforts are invisible. So I'm not complaining without a solution, see my Thinkin' Snow from April of this year.

My opinion of the industry's collective efforts, including the likes of the International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (ISMA) sucks. If Bush wins this election, we are only gaining amo, because the greenies have us in their cross hairs. As a side note, after spending my first summer on my new ATV and seeing what campers, bikers and hunters do in the non-winter time frame, I'm quite puzzled why my meltaway snowmobile tracks have chapped the greenies, and as far as the noise, get over it! ?.the wildlife has.

The environmental movement has pushed me so far to the right that when amendments such as Colorado's Amendment 24 comes up, limiting growth in Colorado and the Front Range, I think for a minute, yes, we need to slow down growth and control congestion. Then I dig a little further and discover that a nature photogragher, John Fielder helped get this amendment off the ground and has the National Wildlife Fund as a backer. In case you don't know, the National Wildlife Fund has not sponsored one hillclimb or snowcross race. In fact, I don't think they like snowmobilers. So, NO on 24. Here's the great thing about this, the magazine Colorado Biz, states that the folks (the home builder types) that are against this amendment have out spent the greenie backed amendment 10 times over.

Hmmmm. Of all the things you read, off all the sled sites you surf, off all the things you fondle at your dealers sales counter, has anyone that gets they're livelihood (remember, I do this for free) from this industry offered you a scorecard telling you what we're up against and what they've done or contributed. Here's a great example. Carroll Tech, the track repair folks, has a tag line "Don't Drink & Ride - Ride Clean - Don't Pollute-Fight for the Right to Ride. Wow, how refreshing. An aftermarket company actually cares and is educating their audience. Kudos to Carroll Tech!! How about the rest of you, what is your message.

So here's my message. As Susan Worwa, Polaris's PRO Coordinator, wrote in the Pro Insider that "No one in the snowmobile industry was consulted" when the snowmobile ban was issued on the national parks, she must be one of those undecided voters, living under a mushroom. We are, and have been in a political war with some well funded extreme, environmental groups. We need to continue getting our message out to all outdoor enthusiast and Susan Worwa, with some of Polaris's moneys, need to hop into the trenches. If the folks that make their livelyhood from this industry would have been helping on a more visible platform, I'd have a lot more sympathy for them if they go broke from lack of sales, as a result of lack of play areas.

And here's how close an election can get. The year is 1960. JFK wins the election because he receives:
1 more votes per precinct in Illinois (8,858 votes)
3 more votes per precinct in Missouri (9,880 votes)
3 more votes per precinct in New Jersey (22,091 votes)
Without those 40,829 votes, the election goes to Nixon. YOUR VOTE DOES MATTER. Experts say this will be the closest election since 1960.

So, let's assume that I'm the idiot and that I have just been unable to locate all the manufacturer's, dealer's and aftermarket company's campaign and political messages to "fight for our right to ride" and that the above statistics can not be obtained by the numbers of today's off-road population. Afterall, how much snowmobiling, mountain biking, dirt biking, ATV riding, jeeping, jet sking and camping was done in 1960?

Vote for Bush. And know that unlike Gore, he won't appoint someone like George Frampton from the Wilderness Society to key government positions. No on Gore. Yes on Bush. God save this country and sport.

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