Friday, January 22, 2010

Death and Emails on the Colorado River

On January 15, 2009, Susan Greene, a Denver Post columnist, wrote "Tapping Mexico for Water," reporting on a ceremony between Interior officials and Mexican diplomats, who shook hands and smiled for cameras in Washington "after pledging cooperation on the Colorado River." This is because "parched communities in Nevada, Arizona, and California have been eyeing water south of the border." In other words, these communities want to steal even the little bit of Colorado River water which currently trickles into Mexico under our treaty, and they found somebody from Mexico to sign it over to them. The deal appears totally one-sided, favoring U.S. development interests, although undoubtedly American taxpayers will foot the bill for the proposed desalination plant in Mexico.

Greene then reported that "water talks between the two countries were set back dramatically in September when the main U.S. and Mexican envoys on the issue were killed, together, in a plane crash."

This was stunning news. I googled until my computer spewed steam, finding nothing, so wrote a letter to Greene, as well as to the Denver Post. I asked what the names of these envoys were and what they had been negotiating. I said that my clients, whose number one concern is the Colorado River, knew nothing about such "negotiations" with Mexico. There is a group which we know meets about Colorado River compact issues, but it has no website and does not hold public meetings, so we have never been able to get information. I asked Greene how she knew these things--who told her? Were the envoys who were killed about to sign an agreement that Mexico should get real wet water, to restore the desiccated Colorado River Delta?

The "lead negotiator" on the deal--after the deaths of the envoys, presumably--was Jim Lochhead, who is not a governmental official. He is a water attorney with Brownstein, Hyatt, Farber & Schreck, which represents real estate developers. In fact, Brownstein has the Colorado River sewn up since its mergers with the Schreck Law Firm in Las Vegas and the Hatch & Parent water law firm of California. Thus, it's disingenuous to say the "parched communities of Nevada, Arizona, and California" have been eyeing this water. Instead, it is a far more logical conclusion that Brownstein has been eyeing it, and now has made a deal to send all the water its way.

Brownstein is easily linked to the mob. After you google--and gag--at what comes up on Brownstein and his "client" Larry Mizel, try googling Mr. Schreck of Las Vegas; whew.

Greene did not respond to my email, and the Denver Post did not publish my letter. Remembering my emails, I just searched for them in my gmail account, and they are gone. On one attempt, I got the advice, "The conversation no longer exists." But I certainly did not delete them and it was only a year ago. The Denver Post's publisher, William Dean Singleton, has been reported by Pete Brewton, a former Houston Chronicle reporter, to be "best friends" with Larry Mizel, the guy who ripped off Silverado with Brownstein's help.

Through more googling, I learned that John Keys, the former Bureau of Reclamation commissioner, also died in a plane crash "on May 30." It's not clear what year, but I am guessing 2008. The only place that item appeared was in a Bureau employee newsletter. Google brings up not a single newspaper article in the entire United States about this incident.

Alison Maynard


  1. What happened to your article on the SLB and Roy Romer? I tried to look it up again and I can't find it.

  2. I wish we had more lawyers like you who actually expose the government employees for what they really are and not afraid to act. Most lawyers know the truth but want to be the good ole boys. Too bad a women has to be the one with the balls- so to speak!