Friday, December 3, 2010

The coming farm war

My reflections of the farming agitators of 80 years ago have to do with what current event?

Insurrection in Iowa? Iowa farm history lesson

Cedar County Cow War

Oh, IT'S ON!!

The current farm bill (S 510, the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2010) that passed the Senate with yes votes from both Harkin and Grassley, is currently in limbo because the Senate unconstitutionally added a "fee" to the bill and only appropriations can originate in the House.
Section 107 of the bill includes a set of fees that are classified as revenue raisers, which are technically taxes under the Constitution. According to a House GOP leadership aide, that section has ruffled the feathers of Ways and Means Committee Democrats, who are expected to use the blue slip process to block completion of the bill.
All window dressing to entertain us, I'm sure. It's got a real good chance of passing anyway.

Why do I say that? Because this bill would bring more power to the federal government to prevent "bad" food from entering the market. Like raw milk or free range chickens. This bill allows federal agents access to a farm's livestock, fields and fodder.

Bawb gave us the lowdown a while back
#1 All food production facilities in the United States will be required to register with the U.S. government. No food will be allowed to be grown, distributed or sold outside this bureaucratic framework unless the FDA allows it.

#2 Any food that is distributed or sold outside of U.S. government control will be considered illegal smuggling.

#3 The FDA will hire an army of new inspectors to enforce all of the new provisions in the bill.

See more of his warnings at The Cream Police
And what can a lowly peasant farmer do when agents come knocking to check if his cows have bovine disease du jour? I know the Senate added a provision to exempt small operators (define those) and the House is none too pleased.

Farm Holiday? Strikes? What lessons can we learn from our parents and grandparents who worked the fields by hand and not riding some $800,000 combine. (I'm okay with this, just making the point that there was a hell of a lot of toil and sweat in the fields years ago that ain't there now.) If we can repeat what they did right and avoid what they did wrong, maybe the farm can be saved.

But don't count on it, the bill has a good chance of passing when Ol' Senator Harkin has something up his sleeve after admitting the House has passed unconstitutional bills before.

Remember, we are all Kulaks now.
The government, the planners, the leaders who directed the robbery, even the government employees themselves "knew better than the peasants how they should live, and what they should sow and when they should plough."

Page 168, "Death by Gun Control", Zelman and Stevens

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