As powerful as this presentation is, it does not–for reasons of space, I am certain; Russell states that these are excerpts–begin to make clear how quickly martial law could be imposed or how few options would be left. Any sitting president who chooses to be the last one in America in order to become the first dictator/king/emperor/first consul can do so easily. I thought it quite possible that Dubya would make that decision. There was nothing to stop him. The process is very simple:
1. Declare a national emergency (any pretext will do, and Obama does so routinely);
2. Dismiss Congress for a minimum of six months, as allowed by the Constitution; and
3. Homeland Security then becomes the law of the land and no one or group can even question any actions taken during that six months. Let me stress that this is by current law.
Impeach the president? How? Congress has been disbanded. Supreme Court interference, even if they could muster 5 votes? How many battalions do the Supremes have? The President has a sizable force under his personal, as opposed to titular, command now, and an enormous number of troops have been trained in “crowd suppression” and “riot control” at Ft. Benning, Georgia. I do not suppose it is by coincidence that 80,000 troops are enough to close off every freeway exit in America–and that isn’t hyperbole; it has been worked out mathematically.
A very easy explanation of precisely how every last piece of enabling legislation Hitler used has been passed in this century in Washington, D. C., can be found in Naomi Wolfe’s slim volume, The End of America. Frills have been added since, such as the “pre-census” workers taking GPS readings on our homes, which will make it far easier to arrest such “dissidents” as I. Your computer tattles on you, and having visited such a site as this–far less what could be termed by Janet Napolitano as “fomenting insurrection” by contributing here–could get one put on the “No Fly” list which will form the basis for identifying trouble-makers. The Feds are against “profiling” only when that is used to identify probable foreign terrorists and illegal aliens; it has no difficulty with stigmatizing me as a “domestic terrorist” because I have read the Bible, own guns, speak out against the government, and consort with former military personnel. Are you now or have you ever been a listener of Rush Limbaugh or Glen Beck? Clearly a prospect for terrorism, particularly men who cut their hair short and have tattoos and wear bluejeans. How unAmerican can they get?
Do you know what Executive Order 11921 says? You’ll have to hunt because it is being removed from the Internet. It allows the government to confiscate everything you have, for the common good, of course. Starting with your food, guns, ammunition, alcohol, fuel, water, and a cute little provision for “naval stores.” That probably sounds like rope and tar to you, but under the new definition it includes everything the Navy purchases, which is basically… everything. It is improbable that you will be reimbursed for the appropriated goods, but even if you were the money would be worth nothing. When a squad armed with genuine “assault” rifles, wearing body armor, shows up at your door, resistance will be dealt with harshly. Most of us patronize Sam’s Club and have little plastic cards from Kroger’s grocery stores, and others. Their computers keep track of your purchases, you know. If you have been “prepping” in the wrong places you left a clear paper trail of what you bought. Just try explaining that you have consumed 700 pounds of rice in the last year. Credit card purchases are on file, so they know how many boxes of Meals, Ready to Eat, you bought. There are murmurings of reinstituting the charge of “hoarding,” and at least one group defines that as having more than three days’ food in your home. The government knows, within an easy to estimate allowance for normal usage on the ranch, how many gallons of red diesel I have; I was required to get a permit to purchase it. (Red diesel can be used only on farms and ranches; from time to time inspectors check the tailpipes of vehicles used on road, and woe betide anyone caught with dye residue.)
Politicians on both sides of the aisle have been planning a totalitarian state for over fifty years, and danger is high between now and at least the end of January, 2011. Obama knows that there are only two ways to prevent resounding rejection at the polls in November: a short, victorious war, or a “fortuitous” “man-made disaster” which might unite the country behind him and would at least provide a flimsy excuse for martial law. Short, victorious wars are a little hard to come by unless you’re Moshe Dyan or Golda Meir. Consequently, I see two particularly perilous questions: will there be elections this year? If there are, will a new Congress be seated next January? The Democrats state bluntly that whether they win or lose they are going to spend the time between now and then pushing through all of the legislation possible, and after the elections they will have absolutely nothing left to lose. I don’t expect Congress to be in recess even for Christmas.
The superb article we are discussing is a year old, and it may have included a more lengthy discussion of the dangers of government control of the food supply. The so-called “Food Safety Modernization Act” is, indeed, a giant pay-off to Rep. Rosa DeLauro’s husband, who is associated with Monsanto, but not only does it push Monsanto (with those genetically modified seeds which produce seeds that are sterile, and have enormous resistance to weed killers), but it outlaws heritage seeds! Sometimes known as heirloom seeds, those are old varieties which produce excellent vegetables lavishly and are in no way deleterious to mankind. (If you like Roma tomatoes, almost all those for sale are from Mexico and of heirloom stock. Scrape the seeds out gently onto a paper towel and dry them for future use. If you spread them out thinly you will be able to cut the paper up for ease of planting.) That, obviously, is very bad, but there is much worse.
The true purposes of the bill are to locate all of the livestock in America, put prices totally under the control of Agribiz, and to make it illegal to process so much as a chicken for your own use. The very threat has driven our local butcher out of business for anything except deer season. The current regulations, which require expensive USDA inspectors on the premises at all times just barely allow him to make a profit, but he can see that the changes will destroy his business. He’s quitting while he’s ahead.
I run a small ranch, and here are the differences the bill will make for my prospects of ever making a profit, not that they were ever large. Without spending at least $150,000 I will not be able to purchase a dairy license. Without the license there will be absolutely no point in keeping 6 dairy goats and two dairy cows in milk. It will be legislated a crime to give away their milk and a crime to transport it in a private vehicle. In theory I can make cheese out of it–if and only if that cheese is aged more than 90 days–but only if I have a separate, all stainless and concrete block “commercial kitchen.” A gallon of milk produces a pound of cheese, with a fair amount of fuss and expensive enzymes and rennet. In theory (and with constant work), I could produce 150 pounds of cheese about 10 months out of the year, and, in theory, sell it for about four dollars a pound if I could find a store that only sold 150 pounds/month of cheddar, which I can’t. Does it sound sensible to build a separate building with air filters and costly refrigeration for the small profit I would make? I didn’t think so, either, but somebody has to protect Lily and Oak Farms from the likes of amateur goatherders.
It gets worse. So far Congress has not pushed through NAIS, but it probably will this fall, at which point I will be required to insert an RFID chip in every animal on the place and be able to account for every last one of them at all times. I will be subject to exceedingly large fines if I do not report the death, sale, loss, or birth of all animals within 24 hours. I don’t know how many chickens I have…somewhere between 100 and 150, probably. They are free range and roost in an assortment of places. Consider the sheer volume of work required to run a scanner over every neck every day! Sanderson and Tyson will only be required to chip one bird out of a house of 5,000. In theory this will be used to track flocks and herds if an animal is found to have Mad Cow disease or Anthrax. Never mind that no sensible person believes that the chip # would be kept with every cut from a side of beef, making it possible to track diseased beef down to the hamburger level.
“But wait! There’s more!” It will become a crime to process beef, chicken, hogs, deer, rabbits, goats or even squirrels and fish on the premises, even for our own use. Because I don’t have a butcher’s license, of course, and I don’t have a commercial kitchen. Never mind that I have 48? of stainless steel counter tops (Craig’s List is wonderful!) and a professional butcher’s bandsaw, they aren’t in a separate concrete block building with proper drains and filtered air and sub-zero refrigeration. It isn’t as though the West were settled by men who dressed their own carcasses, now, is it?
What do you suppose the purpose of this is, if you aren’t credulous enough to believe it is to protect me from hurting myself eating tainted meat or slicing my hand? Why…in addition to letting the government know where to raid for supplies, it limits where I can sell the pastured beef I raise. Obviously I cannot take a steer to the butcher who has gone out of business, but even if I found one I would not be allowed to sell the meat, although I suppose we could transport it to our home freezers and eat it ourselves. I cannot sell my steers and chickens to private individuals because they won’t be able to get them processed easily, either. I will only be able to sell my livestock at public auction, where the only buyers will be from the big slaughter houses. Do we suppose that this restraint of trade will result in lower prices to consumers? No, we do not. Neither can we suppose that those buyers will pay a fair price for the pastured beef I raise, free from hormones and pesticides, at considerable expense and over twice the time of those fed hormones. Still, we can’t let let small ranchers and farmers survive. Oh, I’m a real threat to Hormel, Swift, and Oscar Meyer, I am. Why, I could send about a dozen head to market this year if I wanted to, totally ruining their bottom lines without doing more than paying my feed bills, if that.
A very reasonable question at this point is, “Linda, why are you running cattle, goats, and chickens at all, if this is what in store?” One answer is that it wasn’t, when I began restocking the ranch. A better one is that I never intended to make a profit as a rancher, and a good thing, too. In good years ranchers make 4%. In bad ones they lose $150/head, or more, as they did last year. The livestock preserves my “agricultural exemption” which is worth over a thousand dollars a month off my taxes. We love having the critters around. Primarily, the stock is my hedge against The Greater Depression, hyperinflation, and TEOTWAWKI. It is a renewable source of food–supposing I can protect it against the government and desperate, hungry strangers.
What will I do if ordered to surrender my animals to the government “for the common good,” or “the general welfare,” two phrases that have never included me? I don’t know, any more than most folks know how they will react if put under martial law and see our neighbors disappear into one of the 800 or so internment camps. My instinct is to say that given sufficient warning I will shoot them myself rather than allow the Statists to appropriate them. Shoot them and shove the carcasses into one of the lakes or taint them with gasoline. If being Irish, Scottish, and/or Southern aren’t on Janet’s list of subversive characteristics they ought to be, because we don’t take kindly to rustlers, even if they are wearing black jackets that say BATF & Cattle Confiscation on them and are carrying fully automatic rifles. I absolve them of being jack-booted thugs; I’m sure they will wear Corcorans.
I’m a great believer in doing our thinking ahead of time, but there are too many unknowns to set any rules other than to prepare for the worst, speak out, and share our information. I do wonder, though, how many Americans would resist blatant tyranny, and my sad suspicion is that we would be divided roughly into the Red and the Blue, with the provisos that a great many city dwellers would be constrained by geography and reliance on the food distribution network from protesting while large “entitled” groups would riot and loot. Some, but by no means all, of those in small towns and the country would be more apt to protest..which may be part of the move to get people off the land and into urban environments. Roosevelt had 5.1 million small farms to feed a population of 125 M. There are only 2.1 M small farms, now, and an estimated 330 M residents. 30% of the orange juice in the world is produced in Brazil, as well as most of the sugar cane and coffee. If legislation is efficacious in squeezing out the last of the small time threats to globalized food procurement, at least some small towns will die, no longer able to subsist on selling each other goods and services. The farms went under due to grocery chains, population density, ruinous taxation on inheritances, and the unfounded idea that our sons could make better lives for themselves in the cities. A hundred years ago 85% lived on the land. Today 85% live in cities and suburbs while only 2% are involved in food production, potentially a very dangerous situation.
I am not a violent person and all I want from the Feds is a non-aggression pact. Unfortunately, like foot traffic across our southern borders, they keep pushing into our lives, eating more and more of our substance. They think in terms of how much of their money they will allow us to keep. What if they decide all of the food and water are theirs, too? Do we take up growing lettuce, tomatoes, and bunnies in our closets under grow lights?
Linda Brady Traynham for DumpDC, copyright 2010.