Posts tagged property

Western Lawmakers Talk Federal Land Takeover

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By Bureau of Land Management [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

By Bureau of Land Management [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 

With all the coverage regarding the massive federal land holdings since the Bundy ranch vs. BLM story broke it was interesting to read this headline up at Drudge Report.  The high percentage of federal land in our western states is nothing new and the article below points out that some states, Utah being what appears in the lead, have been studying how best to take a stand to take back much of the federal land located in their individual states.

There have been articles suggesting auctioning the land off and giving the monies raised to the U.S. citizens.  The problems I see with this approach is that big money wins, the “occupied” states lose and how exactly are the people of the United States suppose to receive this money?  No doubt, the check is in the mail, right.  Also, why should a person in NY, FL, or myself receive proceeds of a sale of federal land in NV?  If the idea is to disperse the money to the citizens of that particular state that would be easier to understand.  Not to worry, I am sure that check is in the mail as well.

Another suggestion is to give the land back to the original owners.  Not to be pessimistic but I can see 20 years of costly legal battles (most likely at taxpayer expense) to sort this all out.  The Native Americans should be first in line in this case but I do not think the government wants to go back in time to address the wrongs it has done to the inhabitants of Turtle Island.

Then we have the option of the individual states taking back control of the federal land within their respective borders, hopefully for good intentions, which brings us to this article by Kristen Moulton from The Salt Lake Tribune covering a meeting Utah’s Capitol on Friday which mentions:

More than 50 political leaders from nine states convened for the first time to talk about their joint goal: wresting control of oil-, timber -and mineral-rich lands away from the feds.

The article goes on to point out, as stated by Utah House Speaker Becky Lockhart:

The summit was in the works before this month’s tense standoff between Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and the Bureau of Land Management over cattle grazing…

Speaker Lockhart also points out that the Nevada issue is part of a bigger problem.

Montana state Sen. Jennifer Fielder was quoted as saying:

We have to start managing these lands. It’s the right thing to do for our people, for our environment, for our economy and for our freedoms

The state of Utah seems to have advanced this action farther to date than the other western states, passing HB 142.

Click here for the Full Story.

So what are your thoughts on how this should proceed?  Is change even needed or should the federal land remain controlled as it is currently?  Please feel free to join the discussion by leaving a comment below…

 

Early Lessons of Bunkerville

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Source: https://www.lewrockwell.com

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Early Lessons of Bunkerville

 

The rush and rapidity of events in Bunkerville, Nevada surprised and cheered many, and there is a lot to learn from this case.

It’s too soon to know the long-term impact of people standing up against armed federales last week, but here are some early takeaways.

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Karen Kwiatkowski

Location matters.  This insurrection, brought on by federal government arrogance and greed, happened in part because people could get there, physically and intellectually.  Wide open rangeland (for hardy cattle and 100 year old turtles) physically and visually juxtaposed with the artificial stupidity of “free speech zones,” domesticated citizens penned in by red government tape, tell a story without words, history lessons, or politics.   The imagery brings to mind the words of one of my favorite heroes, “[T]he truth is, there is something terribly wrong with this country, isn’t there? Cruelty and injustice, intolerance and oppression. And where once you had the freedom to object, to think and speak as you saw fit, you now have censors and systems of surveillance coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission.”

Sifters like Drudge and Alex Jones are of enormous value in the struggle for human liberty.  I use Jeff Deist’s phraseology here because it is so perfect.  These market-driven and individualist information selectors, empowered by the low cost of the Internet and its associated technology, shared information in real time, live-streaming government actions and reactions, while providing the needed context of history, politics, economics, religion and culture, directly to people, not through their unions, their political parties, or their employers or their churches.  The search for the “truth” can be activated and shared across state lines and political party prejudice.  With timely information and honest context, government missteps and abuse can captivate and compel and even organize instant armies.

Sparks cause fires, and fires can radically change landscapes.  But the humble spark that invites sympathy may be more powerful than other even more deserving sparks.  Who doesn’t love family farmers, dogies on the range, and even a poor mistreated turtle?  The lockdown of Boston a year ago was highly offensive, illegal in any constitutional sense, and chock-full of federalized law enforcement excess and abuse.  Actual truth about every aspect of the backpack bombers has proven hard to get, to this day.  Yet, because the government abuse was presented as justified, and was delivered with shock and awe, it succeeded as a practice run for Any City, USA.  The thousands of innocent citizens in Boston who had their rights abused were also faceless and unsympathetic.  Apparently, no puppies or kittens were harmed during the collective violation of their owners.  Contrast this to what the feds did and intended to do to the Bundy family and their cows and calves.  Property lines mattered, the victims had faces, children and traditions, and innocent mothers, children and cattle were caught in the threatened crossfire.  The turtle situation also mattered, as news about how the government really treats endangered species boiled and bubbled across the Internet.  The favor-trading and rent-seeking of state and federal politicians and their financiers were also exposed.  The facts conspired to reveal the face of evil in the bland spineless government officials, in steely-eyed government snipers targeting unarmed Americans should they step out of line, in jackbooted government thugs and their machines itching for total dominance.

Simplicity is not 100% necessary in a spontaneous revolution, or any other kind.  The Bundy case is not legally simple, and it has been over twenty years in the making.  One could easily make the case, as the feds clearly rationalized, that the Bundys’ knew this was coming, they had to pay the demanded fines, and that public land is for public, re: “governmental” uses, as defined by whatever appropriate bureaucrat is in charge this decade, often as directed by bought-and-paid-for Senators and Congressmen.  Given how much of Nevada is already considered federal property, it wouldn’t have been unreasonable to expect that average Americans would agree with the government position.  Perhaps they did – but the tireless and fed up minority not only did not agree, because of the location, information and empathy, they showed up, like mushrooms after a spring rain, it must have seemed.  Mechanistic calculations failed the bureaucrats, and a certain spirit of shared spontaneous sacrifice of brothers and sisters prevailed.  Putting aside their own lives for the moment, and standing together, without violence but with an unusual and praiseworthy commitment to justice – this little army accomplished a great thing.  Was it just property rights defense, or a simple reaction to an ugly power grab by a bristling state security apparatus? Or was this fight many things to many people, all arriving at the same place and frame of mind from various religious, constitutional, political, economic and cultural perspectives and interpretations?

Location, broad access to real-time information, a humble sympathetic spark illuminating a multifaceted and even complex problem of justice – these four ingredients seemed present in Bunkerville.    Like the similar sounding Battle of Bunker Hill, the first battle of Bunkerville also illustrates that a weaker and inexperienced group opposed to tyranny can prevail against (or deliver a Pyrrhic victory to) the well-armed existent power structure. The BLM drawback will be publicly presented as a “good government” victory.  In fact the federales and the politicians are already busy with their post-game analysis.

In their analysis, I believe they will determine that, 1) location matters (and hence must be carefully selected and controlled); 2) information is a domestic battleground and if messages cannot be managed, then technology and access should be; 3) empathy must be created and controlled (either for the government position, or for some government-controlled and friendly vector) and; 4) a more effective surveillance state, with better “mood” research, citizen tracking and list-keeping must be created, in order to prevent future “losses” such as at Bunkerville last week.   Until we can shut down the printing presses at the Fed, the incessant borrowing, and the outrageous taxation in this troubled country, we cannot stop the state from more carefully choosing and hiding their mistreatment of citizens and their property.  We will be unable to reverse the pre-emptive criminalization of every person in the country that is the fundamental driving purpose of the surveillance state.

As with the British Army in 1775, the state’s institutions sow the seeds of their own destruction. Inflation, crushing debt, and rats leaving the sinking ship will conspire towards ultimate collapse.  As Bunkerville publicly demonstrated, we the people can peaceably help this process along.  The state will call it reform, transformation, or even rehabilitation, even as politicians begin to scramble to “lead” the leaders of this liberty and justice movement.   The state will shrink, in influence at first, as we have seen, then in physical presence, cohesiveness, and consumption.  We will call it victory, and tell our children instructive fables of evil statist monsters.  God bless the Bundys and their friends, and all of us.  It has started!


LRC columnist Karen Kwiatkowski, Ph.D. [send her mail], a retired USAF lieutenant colonel, blogs occasionally at Liberty and Power and The Beacon. To receive automatic announcements of new articles, click here or join her Facebook page. She ran for Congress in Virginia’s 6th district in 2012..

Copyright © 2014 Karen Kwiatkowski

Reprinted with permission from LRC.

Stealing from the Poor to Give to the Rich (Video)

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Source: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org

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Stealing from the Poor to Give to the Rich (Video)

 

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People often think that property rights benefit those with the most property the most. This isn’t true however. It is actually the poor who in terms of quality of life, benefit most.

In order to have property rights there must be the rule of law. Not the rule of might. In a place where property rights are not respected only the powerful are secure in their possessions (and even then.) If people are not secure in their property, for fear that a “king” or a crony capitalist with connections to the “king” might take their property – the economy suffers. People can’t make contracts with one another. They can’t leverage property. They can’t build wealth, even modest wealth, because any wealth created can always be taken.

Poor people by definition do not have much. But if they can be sure that what little they have will remain theirs and that even the most powerful in society are checked by the rule of law, poor people at least have the chance to build wealth and to escape poverty.

But where the state or private allies of the state can seize property with no regard to ownership (as is the case in many countries) the poor will remain poor.

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Image credit: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org


Nick Sorrentino
About Nick Sorrentino

Nick Sorrentino is the co-founder and editor of AgainstCronyCapitalism.org. A political and communications consultant with clients across the political spectrum, he lives just outside of Washington DC where he can keep an eye on Leviathan.

 

Policing for Profit: Teaparty, ACLU, AFP Join Forces to Fight Worst in Nation Georgia Forfeiture Laws

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Source: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org

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Policing for Profit: Teaparty, ACLU, AFP Join Forces to Fight Worst in Nation Georgia Forfeiture Laws

 

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The ALCU and the Tea Party groups got together to fight the IRS last week. Looks like the’re getting together again in Georgia to keep cops from taking people’s property. Good.

Where possible all those who care about civil liberties (perhaps for different reasons) should pool their resources to push back against a state which has tested the limits of our Constitution. Just because one has $10,000 in cash and the police find it doesn’t mean that the police get to keep all or part of it. But that’s what many civil forfeiture laws now allow, even if one is never convicted of anything.

“Why do you have $10K in cash? “Good” citizens don’t carry $10,000 in cash. You must be a drug dealer. Because you’re a drug dealer the police department will now take your $10,000. Thank you.

What’s that you say? Did we find any drugs? You say you’re not a drug dealer? Well, that’s not how it works citizen.  We don’t need to see any drugs when you have a pile of cash.

What’s that? A pile of cash is legal to own? Sure it might be legal to own it, but its also legal for us to take it.”

(From AppalachianAreaNews.com)
 
Critics say some law enforcement officers unfairly keep money seized from motorists who are investigated for drug trafficking and other offenses and eventually cleared. One man spent $12,000 in legal fees to recover $43,000 police took from him when he was pulled over in South Georgia, the institute noted.
 
The coalition wants the Georgia Legislature to pass House Bill 1, which would put law enforcement and prosecutors under greater scrutiny over how they use cash and property seized in criminal investigations. Supporters want Georgia’s forfeiture laws to be patterned after the rules in North Carolina, in which a jury can consider seizing property only after a conviction, and only if it was used for a crime.

Click here for the article.

Image credit: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org


Nick Sorrentino
About Nick Sorrentino

Nick Sorrentino is the co-founder and editor of AgainstCronyCapitalism.org. A political and communications consultant with clients across the political spectrum, he lives just outside of Washington DC where he can keep an eye on Leviathan.

 

Woman Criticizes Honolulu’s Government, Has Her (Anti-Eminent Domain) Protest Signs Bulldozed

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Source: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org

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Woman Criticizes Honolulu’s Government, Has Her (Anti-Eminent Domain) Protest Signs Bulldozed

 

Arthur Dent fighting a similar battle in the 1970s.

Arthur Dent fighting a similar battle in the 1970s.

 

Local governments love to seize property for projects. Since the Kelo Decision such seizures often are blatant transfers of wealth from the relatively poor and unconnected to the rich and very connected. If your property isn’t generating enough tax revenue for the city fathers (and their underlings) watch out, a bulldozer my be on your doorstep soon.

 

(From Forbes.com)
 
But now the city is showing a callous disregard for Choon’s freedom of speech.  Back in May, Honolulu seized two of her eminent domain protest signs.  Without her consent, city employees went onto the property and seized and impounded her signs before damaging them. Even worse, the city slapped her with a notice for trespassing, for property she is trying to defend in court.
 
After these signs were torn down, Choon placed three more signs there.  These lasted just a few months before the city once again seized the signs.  This time, Honolulu was much more dramatic.  On October 18, city workers, backed by police officers, squad cars and a bulldozer, came by and literally bulldozed those protest signs.

Click here for the article.

Image credit: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org

 

“We could witness a crash of a magnitude never before seen” (Soon)

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Source: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org

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“We could witness a crash of a magnitude never before seen” (Soon)

 

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China is the ultimate crony capitalist state. It is a country which is built on lies on top of more lies on top of more lies on top of more lies.

7 years ago I went to a talk given at Regent University by James McGregor the author of 1 Billion Customers. At the time China truly could do no wrong in the eyes of the investing and business world and business people from all over packed the sizable auditorium to hear the former Wall Street Journal bureau chief in Hong Kong give his take. Everyone wanted to know how they could get a piece of the Chinese boom.

What the business people heard however, was not a “go get em’ boys” speech. Having read the book prior to the talk I knew it wouldn’t be. McGregor, though optimistic cautioned his audience. The Chinese have monumental social problems he warned. The Chinese system of accounting was often of the Enron school. All the business leaders were politicians and vice versa. Every palm had to be greased somehow. Permits could take forever. Intellectual property was not property and blueprints were exploited as soon as they were in-country. There was no transparency in government . And banks, McGregor explained, were a nightmare.

As opaque as China was 7 years ago, it remains largely the same today. No one knows what’s really going on in China economically. The numbers which come out are widely regarded as being way off. The second largest economy in the world operates in government created shadows. We know the red dragon is dipping, but we don’t really know by how much. We know that there is a property bubble which dwarfs the one which deflated in the West but we don’t know at what stage the bubble is. It may have already started deflating, it may be just about to. Imports are down. More and more news of banks failing trickles out.

If China were to begin crashing, crashing at a rate which couldn’t be hidden, things could get very unstable quickly. The markets of course would be first impacted. But the geopolitical ramifications would likely be significant too. A wounded China is probably a dangerous China.

(From Bloomberg.com)
 
But could a crash there take the entire global economy down with it?
 
Absolutely, says Charlene Chu, who until recently was Fitch’s headline-generating analyst in Beijing. Chu has fearlessly trod into an area that China is trying desperately to keep off limits: its vast shadow-banking system. Now that she’s working for a private firm that doesn’t have to rely to governments for revenue, as do rating companies, Chu is free to speak completely openly. And is she ever.
 
“The banking sector has extended $14 trillion to $15 trillion in the span of five years,” Chu, who is now with Autonomous Research, told the Telegraph. “There’s no way that we are not going to have massive problems in China.” What’s more, she added, China “could trigger global meltdown.”

Click here for the article.

Image credit: http://www.againstcronycapitalism.org


Nick Sorrentino
About Nick Sorrentino

Nick Sorrentino is the co-founder and editor of AgainstCronyCapitalism.org. A political and communications consultant with clients across the political spectrum, he lives just outside of Washington DC where he can keep an eye on Leviathan.

 

 

The Chinese Want To Spend Billions Constructing A 600 Acre “China City” In New York State

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Source: http://endoftheamericandream.com

By Michael Snyder

 

The Chinese Want To Spend Billions Constructing A 600 Acre “China City” In New York State

 

The-Chinese-Government-Is-Buying-Up-Economic-Assets-And-Huge-Tracts-Of-Land-All-Over-The-United-States-300x217The Chinese have made trillions of dollars flooding our shores with super cheap products, and now they are using some of that money to buy land and property all over America.  For example, there is now a proposal to construct a multibillion dollar “China City” that would span approximately 600 acres in a remote area of New York state.  This “China City” (that is actually what it would be called) would be located on Yankee Lake in Sullivan County, New York.  The plans anticipate large numbers of Chinese businesses, plenty of homes for Chinese immigrants, a Chinese high school, a college, a casino and even a theme park.  And the first 600 acres is only for “phase one” of the plan.  Ultimately, the goal is for “China City” to cover more than 2,000 acres.  Those promoting this plan say that it will be a great way for New Yorkers to learn to appreciate Chinese culture.

So should we be concerned that the Chinese want to place a little slice of communist China right in the heart of New York state?

Should we really be allowing other nations (especially ones that publish maps showing what will happen when they nuke us) to be setting up self-sustaining communities inside our own country that have no intention of integrating into the wider culture?

David North of the Center for Immigration Studies is one of those that is sounding the alarm over this project.  According to him, the eventual goal of the “China City” project is to essentially take over two small towns and cover a total of more than 2,000 acres…

The first version of the plan to emerge was a grandiose one. It would cover more than 2,000 acres (more than three square miles) spread over the towns of Mamakating and Thompson. It would include a Chinese theme park, a city full of China-related businesses, a high school, a college, and 1,000 residences. Every province in China would have an office there and the place would be replete with symbols of Chinese culture. For more on these plans see CCOA’s website, festooned with golden dragons and text in both Mandarin and English.  When finished it would be a $6 billion project, its backers say.

But for now, the first phase is only going to cover about 600 acres…

A revised version of the initial offering was proposed later; this would, as a modest start to the broader project, include a college, an urban area, some family housing, and lots of student housing; it would cover less than 600 acres and would all be in the town of Thompson, whose officials, a local lawyer tells me, are somewhat less hostile to the plan than those in Mamakating.

And this is not the first time that this kind of thing has been proposed.  As I reported last year, a different Chinese group has purchased 200 acres of land in a rural area of Michigan and hopes to create a “China City” out there…

A Chinese group known as “Sino-Michigan Properties LLC” has bought up 200 acres of land near the town of Milan, Michigan.  Their plan is to construct a “China City” with artificial lakes, a Chinese cultural center and hundreds of housing units for Chinese citizens.  Essentially, it would be a little slice of communist China dropped right into the heartland of America.  This “China City” would be located about 40 minutes from both Detroit and Toledo, and it would be marketed to Chinese business people that want to start businesses in the United States.

You can read the full article about that project right here.

Most of the time, when the Chinese gobble up our properties they do not do it in such large chunks.  But make no mistake – they are voraciously buying up real estate right now.  In fact, CNN recently published an article about the cities where they are the most active…

New York and Los Angeles top the list of U.S. cities they are most interested in, according to Juwai.com, a website where Chinese buyers browse global real estate listings.
 
More surprisingly, Philadelphia and Detroit come in at No. 3 and No. 4.
 
The top 10 list is rounded out by Houston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Atlanta, San Diego and Memphis.
 
Chinese buyers purchased $8.2 billion worth of U.S. property in 2012, according to Juwai.

It has been estimated that the Chinese are now buying one out of every ten homes sold in the state of California.  And this buying spree actually appears to be accelerating.  The following is a brief excerpt from a recent CNBC article entitled “Chinese buying up California housing“…

At a brand new housing development in Irvine, Calif., some of America’s largest home builders are back at work after a crippling housing crash. Lennar, Pulte, K Hovnanian, Ryland to name a few. It’s a rebirth for U.S. construction, but the customers are largely Chinese.
 
“They see the market here still has room for appreciation,” said Irvine-area real estate agent Kinney Yong, of RE/MAX Premier Realty. “What’s driving them over here is that they have this cash, and they want to park it somewhere or invest somewhere.”

So where did they get all of this cash?

A lot of it came from us of course.  We have lost tens of thousands of businesses and millions of jobs to the Chinese, and now they are literally buying up little pieces of America with the money that we spent on all of the cheap plastic trinkets that they exported to us.

And they are not just buying up residential real estate.  They are buying lots of commercial real estate as well.  In fact, in a previous article I talked about how one Chinese firm recently purchased one of the most important landmarks in New York City

Chinese conglomerate Fosun International Ltd. (0656.HK) will buy office building One Chase Manhattan Plaza for $725 million, adding to a growing list of property purchases by Chinese buyers in New York city.
 
 

The Hong Kong-listed firm said it will buy the property from JP Morgan Chase Bank, according to a release on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange website.

 
 

Chinese firms, in particular local developers, have looked overseas to diversify their property holdings as the economy at home slows. Chinese individuals also have been investing in property abroad amid tight policy measures in the mainland residential market.

 
 
Earlier this month, Chinese state-owned developer Greenland Holdings Group agreed to buy a 70% stake in an apartment project next to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., in what is the largest commercial-real-estate development in the U.S. to get direct backing from a Chinese firm.

So where is all of this eventually heading?

Should we all start learning how to speak Chinese?

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This article first appeared here at the The American Dream.  Michael Snyder is a writer, speaker and activist who writes and edits his own blogs The American Dream and Economic Collapse Blog. Follow him on Twitter here



Image credit: http://endoftheamericandream.com

 

Karen De Coster Discusses the Detroit Bankruptcy

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Karen De Coster Discusses the Detroit Bankruptcy

 

9-28-2013 11-50-26 AM

Next News Network video capture

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Published by   NextNewsNetwork    NextNewsNetwork

 

Karen De Coster interview with Gary Franchi for WHDT. The topic is Detroit and the city’s bankruptcy.

Cities use Eminent Domain to Fight Foreclosures

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Source: http://nextnewsnetwork.com

Cities use Eminent Domain to Fight Foreclosures

 

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RICHMOND, California – Through eminent domain, governments are permitted to compel homeowners to sell their property in order to accommodate a public use – such as a new highway.

In recent years, that practice has been expanded to include lucrative corporate ventures, such as shopping malls or even casinos, that can expand the local tax base. Yahoo News points out that Richmond, Virginia is about to become the first city in the U.S. to attempt using eminent domain as a way to stop foreclosures.

About half of all homeowners with mortgages in the city are underwater – meaning that they owe more than their home is currently worth – in some cases, up to three or four times as much. On July 29, the city sent out letters offering to buy 626 underwater mortgage loans for what it considers a fair market price.

If the offers are declined, the city intends to condemn the properties through eminent domain.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/city-invokes-seizure-laws-save-214457704.html

USDA Protection Racket Demands 47% of Raisin Crops – Destroys Small Farmers

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Source: http://farmwars.info

By Barbara Peterson

USDA Protection Racket Demands 47% of Raisin Crops – Destroys Small Farmers

 

Barb

 

Barb’s Note: This is a criminal extortion racket. What is the difference between a mobster coming to your property and demanding a portion of your profits for “protection” and the government coming to your property and demanding a portion of your crops for “protection?” NOTHING!!!

 

Image credit: http://farmwars.info

Image credit: http://farmwars.info

 

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