I agree on a new tax. It's long overdue.For the first part, I get the intent of the Act, but protection of areas and antiquities can go hand in hand. If protecting the antiquities also permanently protects a couple million acres of vast landscapes I support it.
And as for the increased visitation. America’s public lands just aren’t a secret anymore. There’s a lot of people on this world and country, and there’s a lot that want to go outdoors. Welcome to a capitalist society. Of course recruitment of new people outdoors has business motivations. One thing I wish would pass and would seriously support is a tax on a bigger variety of outdoor apparel and gear to go towards management and conservation like the taxes we pay on ammo and firearms. More investment is certainly needed from all these new “non-consumptive” users.
Millions of acres going hand in hand with protection is radically different than saying size it what makes them special. The size argument you made is inconsistent with the Act and feeds the resistance to designations. I hope you are willing to admit how such claims you used in your previous post is part of the current yo-yo cycle. It's an inescapable observation as it's been brought up on this very thread and the counter argument holds legitimate weight.
We clearly diverge on acceptance of the current model. As I said before, there is a difference between individuals seeking out these places on their own as an understandable part of their franchise of public lands. That is the basal usage that will always exist and likely grow on its own. But the additional level of recruitment can be debated and affected. We don't have to rely upon commercial enterprise for conservation (at least the initial designation) but we currently do to a large extent. Getting past that means an honest accounting and not simply writing it off as inevitable. I believe that's necessary if we hope to preserve certain characteristics of the places we conserve. I believe the writing is on the wall across such places that if we don't do so soon that we'll loose certain experiences (for the average visitor who goes past the front country) for generations to come. More and more parks are going to reservations because of outsized demand and to think our monuments are immune, especially with spill over effect in Utah, is to miss an important opportunity that IMHO is paramount to the broad goal of protection.
Maybe I'll be proven wrong over time but the current trajectory (just see reporting on impacts to BENM since Obama's proclamation) isn't a indication of that likelihood.