In Texas they go in with guns, seize evidence and ask questions later. In Utah, they go in with the accountants.
That’s one way to describe the two very different approaches Utah and Texas have taken to deal with the polygamist communities in their respective states, and this month’s Portfolio magazine has a superb profile of Bruce Wisan, the Salt Lake City accountant who has been put in charge of the trust that holds all the assets -- hundreds of homes, a few farms and factories, several schoolhouses -- the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints sect has accumulated over 66 years of hard labor and frugal living on their isolated community that sits on the Utah-Arizona border. The piece, written by Claire Hoffman, offers unprecedented access and insight into the bizarre world controlled by the felon-prophet-pedophile Warren Jeffs.
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In short, if you want to understand the background of the people caught up in the Great Eldorado Polygamist Roundup, there is no better place to start. Also, for those in need of long-weekend reading, here's the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services' petition for writ of mandamus filed today with the Texas Supreme Court. --Jesse Hyde