I’m forwarding this Jim Beers piece because he focuses on three major federal government actions that came to him in a single day, one of which was my forwarding of the USFWS climate change strategy and action plan drafts and comments.† Jim has been a great resource for me for the past decade plus for a lot of background information on the many things that impact private property owners.
I don’t know where many of my correspondents may stand in terms of the Second Amendment, but there are a lot of things happening there that we should all be very concerned about, regardless of our positions on gun ownership.† Jim draws some parallels that are discomfiting, but I find that many of the people I know are increasingly drawing similar parallels to other historical periods from the times before Alexander the Great and onwards.
We are being inundated with all manner of threats to the use and enjoyment of private property, some of which are massive.† While it may all feel overwhelming, let’s not allow ourselves to go numb and simply let it happen.† We’ve got a good start on what needs to be done to retain our property rights and to regain those parts that have been eroded over the past decades.† Instead, let’s do everything we can to reach out and bring more of our friends and neighbors on board to help us regain control over what is ours.
There’s a lot of overreach going on in many areas of government that is making more and more people uneasy.† If we can point them to our organizations and get them energized by being involved in something that can help them do something to take control of what’s happening around them, then their sharing of the load we have been carrying will help us become far more effective than we can be without their help.
If Jim’s essay strikes a chord in you, please feel free to pass it along to others.† If you really like what he has to say, go to his site and check out some of his other essays.† He not only has a lot to say, but it’s all based on long experience.
Were alarm bells going off throughout the Twin Towers after the planes struck them and up until they collapsed?† Whether or not the alarms sounded until the buildings collapsed or whether they immediately or eventually malfunctioned, the situation is analogous to America today.† Regardless of whether the alarms saved some individuals, or malfunctioned eventually, or perhaps were ignored by persons that could not conceive of what was about to take place; the results were the same, an enormous loss of life and the disappearance of those two buildings (forever?).
Today, 16 October 2009, there are alarm bells going off all over this great nation.† The latest three such bells have come across my desk just this morning.
I. Secretary Clinton just announced “negotiations on a global treaty regulating trade in conventional weapons”.† She assures us that the US would insist on “leaving it up to the States to ‘exclusively’ regulate the arms trade within their borders”.
A. Article. VI. of The Constitution of the United States says “This Constitution and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; AND ALL TREATIES (my capitalization) made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, SHALL BE THE SUPREME LAW OF THE LAND (again my capitalization); and the judges in every State shall be bound thereby, ANY THING IN THE CONSTITUTION OR LAWS OF ANY STATE TO THE CONTRARY NOT WITHSTANDING (again my capitalization).”
B. The goal is to have the President sign and this rubber-stamp Senate ratify A TREATY that will make the 2nd Amendment no longer a guarantee of the right to bear arms but rather a meaningless and legally outdated “individual right” supplanted by “Treaty Obligations”.† Assurances by the White House or Congress (now or ever) are meaningless and are frankly lies.† Aside from the proven lack of veracity from this White House and this Congress, there is a decided lack of outspoken opponents in today’s weak-kneed “opposition”.
C. A TREATY obligating the Federal government to “control arms” will Constitutionally change our guaranteed right to bear arms into a permission to be granted or withheld by both State and Federal authorities.†
SUCH A TREATY would immediately legitimize illegal gun laws in places like Chicago and Washington, DC since “States would exclusively regulate the arms trade within their borders”† By gutting the 2nd Amendment, any Federal interest in protecting the right to bear arms in any State would disappear. Second, it would give the Federal government unchecked authority to tighten down the purchase, possession, sale, and transportation of everything from gun types, gun transfers and gun numbers to gun possession, gun ownership, and gun use.† Third it would authorize State and Federal bureaucracies to impose registration, reporting requirements, permit requirements, and rules that would be paid for by taxes (excuse me, “fees”): all of course under the cover of paying for “regulating trade in conventional weapons”.† Fourth -like to hear it or not- this is a thinly veiled strike by government to eliminate all gun possession, just as Hitler and Lenin did.† This American anti-gun campaign is not “Million Moms” or neighbors of schools where shootings are common: it is radical government politicians, their radical supporters, and self-serving bureaucrats doing just what every tyrant from Cromwell to Pol Pot knew had to be done – DISARM the populace you intend to enslave them because eventually (like the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising) they will fight IF THEY HAVE THE MEANS.
II. Legislation is currently continuing to wend its way through Congress to simply grant by a truly un-Constitutional Act of Congress the Federal government jurisdiction and authority over “all waters of the United Sates”.† From the humble beginning of the “Rivers and Harbor Act of 1899” (an earlier period of US environmental hysteria like today) in order to give the Federal government a new responsibility to “promote (nautical and riverine) interstate commerce” a Darwinian power evolution of epic proportions was begun.† A march of ever-expanding Federal power expansion was marked by:
∑ In the mid-60’s and early 70’s The Water Quality Act and Clean Water Act gave Federal bureaucracies growing power over State waters and privately owned water.
∑ The EPA was begun to “regulate and enforce” all the emerging Federal “responsibilities” over “waters”: this of course was in addition to the explosion of Federal regulations by NPS over National Park’s “waters” and “their” watersheds, USFWS regulations over National Wildlife Refuge “waters”, USFS regulations over all National Forest “waters”, and all of these influenced and combined with the largest explosion of Federal “water” regulations by the Federal granddaddy of Federal “water” responsibilities the US Army Corps of Engineers over “all navigable (in the largest sense of that term) waters of the US”.
∑ Wetlands legislation always was a recurring exercise in creating the claim that “navigable” included creeks, sloughs, and every periodically wet soil anywhere; thereby expanding Federal authority over all water everywhere for unchallenged Federal ownership and control.
∑ The Safe Drinking Water Act tried mightily to show that we “needed” Federal control over any water that might one day be drunk.
∑ Waterways were used as excuses for things like The Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to establish not only Federal authority over certain streams but also jurisdiction over uses of the water; recreation on the water; the “watersheds” and “buffers” and “corridors” and “viewsheds” of such streams; and all associated private property.
∑ Watersheds came to be defined as all manner of underground water as well as streams and storm runoff.† Objections by States to the theft of all these State jurisdictions as well as private property within each State were blunted by Federal grants and assistance that made the State bureaucrats and legislatures mere hostages to Federal bureaucrats and politicians ladling Federal “water” funds to each State.† Federal water authority came to be just one more radical tool to dictate where people live, what people would be “allowed to do and not do”, and what permits and permissions would cost (i.e. taxes and “fees”).
∑ The Endangered Species Act was molded yet again into a Federal power tool as it came to be used to breach dams, shut down agriculture, and threaten irrigators and other water users.
Thus has the simple, yet naÔve, purpose of enabling the Federal government to fulfill its Constitutional role stated in Article 1, Section 8, Clause 3 “To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes” become a threat to the Republic. By ratifying the authority of the Federal government to maintain and improve “the navigable waters of the United States” we created a tool to be envied by dictators down through the ages: a tool of repression that transfers large portions of lesser governmental powers and all ever-greater portions of individual rights to one supreme central government with little awareness by the public thereby verifying the old maxim that whoever controls the water, controls everything.
III.† I have just been informed by a friend that “The US Fish and Wildlife Service is planning to make climate change* its highest priority.”
(Note the term “climate change” as opposed the term ”global warming” that originally got everyone’s shorts all wadded up.† Forgetting for a moment the silly linkage of CO2 and “warming” or the nebulous quantification of influencing “change” regarding “climate”; the bureaucratic wonder of “climate change” is that, like “job creation” with Stimulus Funds, there is NO measurement possible and there is NO end to the government funding it can generate nor any limit to the Federal government power it can generate throughout society.)
The USFWS draft strategy and action plan are “open” for public comment until November 23, 2009.”†
My friend goes on to inform us that:
∑ “The literature cited list for this redirection is less than a page long, and reveals something less than full dedication to scientific method.”
∑ “Large scale full landscape conservation measures are featured prominently.”
∑ “I have not yet been able to find a postal address or fax number for comment submission.”
∑ “There is a lot in these plans that will limit private property rights in both the near and long term.”
∑ “The plans include the implementation of huge wildlife corridor cores and buffers, cross-border cooperation for landscape conservation projects, and much, much more.”
As an old bureaucrat, allow me to observe that this sort of inevitable and unchecked government expansion of power and expense is being conducted throughout Federal offices.† The total costs of all the increased land acquisition, hiring, operations and maintenance will be not only astronomical but will be directly proportional to future losses of private property and future diminishment of the authority of State and local governments to protect the rights and lifestyles of the communities that have relied on them for over 200 years.
These three items (international gun trade regulation,† “protecting” “all waters”, and massive government programs to prevent the “climate” from “changing”) are what H. L. Mencken once famously identified as products of “practical politics”. He said, “the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”† This humorous truism should not deter us from understanding the deadly seriousness of each of these matters.† To see any of them alone should send shivers down our spines and elicit calls to throw out every bum (i.e. all of them) in Washington today. To take notice of all three on one day is akin to seeing Attilla the Hun coming over a Hungarian ridge or seeing Luftwaffe bombers and Panzer Divisions streaking across Polish countryside.
Each of these steps toward eventual tyranny should sound an alarm to us all but like hearing the shepherd boy constantly calling “wolf” we have tuned out the alarms.† However in all fairness, the clamor of “approaching tyranny” alarms going off all over has never been as great in this Nation as it is today.
Consider all the following alarms in the past year and just how fast we are plunging headlong into a tyrannical government from which there will be no easy escape:
∑ Federal appointees setting private sector salaries.
∑ Federal nationalization of banks.
∑ -†††††† “††††††††††††††† “†††††††††††† “ Insurance companies.
∑ -†††††† “††††††††††††††† “†††††††††††† “ Automobile companies.
∑ -†††††† “††††††††††††††† “†††††††††††† “ Health Care.
∑ ACORN/SEI thugs breaking up citizen assemblies (like SS or communist “organizers”).
∑ “Cap & Trade” legislation that will raise energy and other costs astronomically for no end other than increasing government power and revenue.
∑ Complex and lengthy laws passed in the dark of night without public notice or even cursory reading by those that vote for them.
∑ Powerful political offices passed down in families like Kennedy, Rockefeller, Dingell, Biden, Daley, etc.
∑ Taxes on sodas and “fees” for health care each claimed to be for social justice or health ends but really for nothing but government revenue.
∑ Proposals to ban foods like bacon and hamburger while giving animals “rights”???
∑ Proposals to use public taxes to fund abortions.
∑ Proposals to prohibit hospitals and health workers from refusing to commit abortions or euthanasia on moral grounds under pain of government termination.
∑ “Wars” between politicians and certain news media and certain churches over disagreement with regime policies.
∑ Massive deficits, unlike any ever seen in history.
∑ Government entities like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac masquerading as “non-government” while working with agencies like the FDIC to browbeat banks into continuing to make bad loans or give money to ACORN thus perpetuating the housing crisis and the unemployment crisis thus keeping the public ripe for “more Federal intervention”.
∑ A steady loss of private property and private property rights to Federal and State wastrels.
∑ A steady assault on Constitutional rights from bearing arms to freedom of speech, assembly, press, and security of our property from unwarranted search and seizure.
∑ Government preferments and favoritism for women and blacks in spite of female majorities and blacks everywhere from The White House to Commanding Generals.
∑ Black athletes and black leaders using “racist” accusations to deny fellow Americans their Constitutional rights where, if the tables were turned and white leaders proclaimed that “certain blacks weren’t wanted in nor should be allowed in businesses that were 70% white” there would be an outcry of unfairness just like blacks cannot commit “hate crimes” on whites despite a wildly disparate rate of black-on-white crime in practically every large city.
∑ We continue to ship Billions to nations that hate us for their oil while refusing to develop or use our own massive deposits of coal, oil, and gas.
∑ We refuse to build nuclear power plants for the high demand for power while building windmills that kill birds, produce minimal power, and lie still in the summer when power demands are highest.
∑ Schools that fail at education while propagandizing children about aberrant sexual lifestyles, the passť’ nature of religion and marriage, and the need for compliance with the leader’s wishes (UUU-UUU-UUMMM!) like every tyrannical dictatorship of recent history.
Just like those Twin Towers after the planes hit them, there should be alarms going off everywhere for each of these things.
Before I began working as a law enforcement officer many years ago a discovery was made that has saved many lives.† All American police and emergency vehicles had similar sirens that whined a constant and identical sound while in Europe they used sirens that varied in pitch and played various notes.† Lo and behold it was discovered that there were far more serious accidents at the scenes of emergencies in the US than in Europe involving police and emergency vehicles racing to the scene.† The reason, it was determined, was that you could not hear similar-sounding sirens while you were in a vehicle with the same siren turned on with the same whine.† The answer was to adopt the European sirens and thereby save many American lives by allowing the emergency personnel to remain aware of other racing vehicles heading toward the same destination.
We are each like those emergency vehicles with the old sirens all heading toward Armageddon oblivious to all the others doing exactly the same thing.† We ignore gun rights if we have no guns.† We ignore water hegemony with the ill-informed impression that anything to “clean” or “save” water must be OK. We ignore the inevitable losses of health care and the loss of human lives to abortion and euthanasia in the mistaken assumption that we will get something else and that we don’t expect to “need” an abortion and we will stay healthy by running and eating healthy foods.
Has there ever been an “educated” population of free men and women that so simply and willingly surrendered to the tyrannical rule of a dictator and a gang that all expect to profit like those that surround Hugo Chavez and Robert Mugabe?
As painful and controversial as all this is to say; it must be said.† We are all rushing into a dictatorship as surely as we are angry with those that mention it just like someone shouting “Iceberg!” on an “unsinkable” ship like the Titanic.
16 October 2009
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This article and other articles written by Jim Beers since January 2009 can
be found at http://jimbeers7.blogster.com (Jim Beers Uncommon Sense)
Articles by Jim Beers written from March 2006 to January 2009 can be found
at http://jimbeers.blogster.com (Jim Beers Common Sense)
Jim Beers is available for consulting or to speak. Contact:
Jim Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow. He was stationed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York City, and Washington DC. He also served as a US Navy Line Officer in the western Pacific and on Adak, Alaska in the Aleutian Islands. He has worked for the
Utah Fish & Game, Minneapolis Police Department, and as a Security Supervisor in Washington, DC. He testified three times before Congress; twice regarding the theft by the US Fish & Wildlife Service of $45 to 60 Million from State fish and wildlife funds and once in opposition to expanding Federal Invasive Species authority. He resides in Eagan, Minnesota with his wife of many decades.