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In his book The Last Stand David Harris vividly documents the events leading up to and directly following the hostile takeover of Pacific Lumber Harris presents the heartrending story of a logging company whose noble ideals were corrupted by the sudden influx of greed Prior to Charles Hurwitzs company Maxxam gaining control Pacific Lumber viewed the principles of selective cut and sustainable yield as practically sacred Afterwards the company reversed these policies that had become almost synonymous with its name solely for the purpose of maximizing profit While some might argue that the reversal of these policies and the transition to modern forestry was inevitable this viewpoint is extremely fallible The basic principles of selective cut and sustainable yield are in utter opposition to everything that the logging industry has come to represent over the course of the last century PL was a different kind of logging company Selective cutting a policy first set forth by Albert Stanwood Murphy meant PL cut a maximum of 70 percent of the mature trees in a stand Harris page 16 PLs practice was such a drastic change from the industry standard of leaving hillsides completely barren that it was often difficult for the untrained observer to realize that the companys selectively cut acreage had even been touched pages 16-17 Sustainable yield another Albert Murphy implementation also represented a striking difference between how PL and the rest of the industry did business While many companies would routinely cut all of their timber and promptly go out of business PLs annual cut would always be limited and never exceed its timberlands new growth page 17 This way year after year PLs gross amount of board feet would never decline PL could continue this mode of production indefinitely Following Hurwitzs takeover PL abandoned these admirable policies merely to increase short-term profit All environmental considerations were tossed aside in favor of ways to increase the flow of money Harris illustrates this
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