Saturday, April 26, 2014

Hello My Name is: Domestic Terrorist

 A citizen observer reports from the Bundy Ranch in Nevada that the volunteers guarding the Bundys are responding to Harry Reid's labeling of them as "Domestic Terrorists".  

They are wearing name badges with  "Hello, my name is "Domestic Terrorist".

It would be funny if totalitarian regimes had not used this tactic for the last 80 years.   Most people remember how Stalinists labeled anyone who opposed them as "Enemies of the State".    The phrase was even popularized in books and a movie.    Here is the report:
I just returned last night from 5 days in Bunkerville.  Many of the patriots there were wearing “Hello, my name is “Domestic Terrorist”” badges.
The Oath Keepers were in force with many new faces arriving daily. The militia were also there in force.  I didn’t count, but there were a number of folks there who feel as below, that the government has outlived its usefulness and needs to be reined in.
The leadership in the field in Bunkerville is asking for volunteers to rotate up for a stay for as long as possible.  The idea is to have the camps full and people moving about continuously to show support for and protection of the Bundys.
If you can squeeze a couple or three days into your schedule, think about lending physical support to the cause.  If that’s not possible, donations to “” will help feed and keep the watch keepers hydrated.
I was glad for the chance to participate and when I get my act together down here will probably head back up for another stint.
It is easy to sympathize with the Bundys as another citizen who the Leviathan is wearing down with burdensome regulations that cannot be followed without going bankrupt.  The government has promulgated so many regulations, rules, and laws that it is impossible for anyone to keep up, and in the case of the Bundys, the expense to fight them in court can easily be ruinous in and of itself.

 This letter, said to be from one of Bundy's fellow ranchers,  is purported to show why so many ranchers support the Bundys, while not doing the same as they have:

“There have been a lot of people criticizing Clive Bundy because he did not pay his grazing fees for 20 years. The public is also probably wondering why so many other cowboys are supporting Mr. Bundy even though they paid their fees and Clive did not. What you people probably do not realize is that on every rancher’s grazing permit it says the following: “You are authorized to make grazing use of the lands, under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management and covered by this grazing permit, upon your acceptance of the terms and conditions of this grazing permit and payment of grazing fees when due.” The “mandatory” terms and conditions go on to list the allotment, the number and kind of livestock to be grazed, when the permit begins and ends, the number of active or suspended AUMs (animal units per month), etc.
The terms and conditions also list specific requirements such as where salt or mineral supplements can be located, maximum allowable use of forage levels (40% of annual growth), etc., and include a lot more stringent policies that must be adhered to. Every rancher must sign this “contract” agreeing to abide by the TERMS AND CONDITIONS before he or she can make payment. In the early 90s, the BLM went on a frenzy and drastically cut almost every rancher’s permit because of this desert tortoise issue, even though all of us ranchers knew that cow and desert tortoise had co-existed for a hundred+ years. As an example, a family friend had his permit cut by 90%. For those of you who are non-ranchers, that would be equated to getting your paycheck cut 90%. In 1976 there were approximately 52 ranching permittees in this area of Nevada. Presently, there are 3.

Most of these people lost their livelihoods because of the actions of the BLM. Clive Bundy was one of these people who received extremely unfair and unreasonable TERMS AND CONDITIONS. Keep in mind that Mr. Bundy was required to sign this contract before he was allowed to pay. Had Clive signed on the dotted line, he would have, in essence, signed his very livelihood away. And so Mr. Bundy took a stand, not only for himself, but for all of us. He refused to be destroyed by a tyrannical federal entity and to have his American liberties and freedoms taken away.

Also keep in mind that all ranchers financially paid dearly for the forage rights those permits allow – – not rights to the land, but rights to use the forage that grows on that land. Many of these AUMS are water based, meaning that the rancher also has a vested right (state owned, not federal) to the waters that adjoin the lands and allow the livestock to drink. These water rights were also purchased at a great price. If a rancher cannot show beneficial use of the water (he must have the appropriate number of livestock that drinks and uses that water), then he loses that water right. Usually water rights and forage rights go hand in hand.

Contrary to what the BLM is telling you, they NEVER compensate a rancher for the AUMs they take away. Most times, they tell ranchers that their AUMS are “suspended,” but not removed. Unfortunately, my family has thousands of “suspended” AUMs that will probably never be returned. And so, even though these ranchers throughout the course of a hundred years invested thousands(and perhaps millions) of dollars and sacrificed along the way to obtain these rights through purchase from others, at a whim the government can take everything away with the stroke of a pen. This is the very thing that Clive Bundy single handedly took a stand against. Thank you, Clive, from a rancher who considers you a hero”.
Whether Clive Bundy would prevail in court with first rate counsel and a legal fund that could match the almost unlimited resources of the federal government has become irrelevant for many.   Too many Americans have been mistreated by the system, and no longer believe that the bureaucracies or the courts can be trusted. 

It is this trust that needs to be rebuilt, and it can only be done by a long process that relies on the rule of law rather than the law of who is ruling at the time.  The BLM did the right thing by pulling back.

If President Obama wants to do the right thing by the country, he would give a blanket pardon to everyone involved in the incident, like Washington did to those in the Whiskey rebellion.  Then he would call for an investigation of Harry Reid and a renewed study of the desert tortoise that would withstand peer review.

Unfortunately, I doubt that President Obama is a statesman of that caliber.

©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
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