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Old 04-10-2012, 10:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Ending a way of life - Ranchers and the BLM

Source Link :

http://www.lvrj.com/blogs/vin/Ending...e.html?ref=805

Quote:
Ending a way of life
Posted by Vin Suprynowicz
Tuesday, Apr. 10, 2012 at 07:08 PM

When I was a kid, I visited Mystic Seaport, on the Connecticut shore. They still had a few old-timers there who could demonstrate 19th-century crafts, creating works of art out of knotted rope or carved whalebone. I remember their calloused hands, working in the shade of tar-scented sail lofts.

They'll all be gone, now. I wonder if they managed to train any younger souls to carry on those crafts with anywhere near that level of dexterity. Like those who can still craft a mountain dulcimer, I doubt there are many.

Here in Nevada, within living memory, there were 52 cattle ranchers in Clark County.

The last one, Cliven Bundy, called me Monday to report the federal Bureau of Land Management has warned him they're going to hire some contract cowboys to round up and seize the remaining 500 head he runs south of Mesquite, some 80 miles northeast of Las Vegas, possibly as soon as tomorrow, Wednesday.

The branded stock may be theoretically "returned" to him -- though he shakes his head over the injuries the animals may sustain, the mama cows which will be separated from their calves, the unaffordable feed and storage fees he'll be expected to pay to avoid forfeiting the entire herd.

As for the "slicks" -- the yet-unbranded young livestock? He assumes they'll simply be rustled, stolen, sold out-of-state.

Cliven told me he called the state brand inspector, Monday. That's the guy who's supposed to enforce our state laws against cattle rustling. He was told not to expect any help, there.

The BLM have long insisted Bundy runs his cattle without proper grazing permits. Bundy responds by challenging the BLM's juridiction over him or the land, which members of his family have been ranching for 100 years, and for which the federals can show no bill of sale approved by the Legislature of the State of Nevada -- the only method set forth in the Constitution authorizing the federal government to acquire title to, or plenary authority over, any lands within the several states (excluding the District of Columbia.)

Cliven felt he had no choice but to "fire" the BLM -- to stop cooperating them over grazing plans, etc. -- years ago. He explains the BLM's "ecologists," with their college degrees but little or no experience actually running cattle on arid desert lands, sought to limit his "permits" in a way that would allow him to graze cattle on the range only from mid-summer through late winter. They wanted him to pull his cattle off the range in springtime, when they expressed concern the big brutes might trample the precious little baby desert tortoises.

In fact, range biologist Vern Bostic demonstrated decades ago that desert tortoises actually do better on range which is being grazed by cattle -- and managed by ranchers who improve the range for wildlife as well as their own stock with water tanks and the like. (Bundy told me Monday the BLM has also ordered him to remove all his "improvements" from the range, which would include water tanks and the lines that feed them from the occasional local spring.)

But what's real-world, empirical evidence provided by local yokels with calloused hands and funny western drawls, to "experts" who've got the proper college degrees?

The only time cattle will fatten on a desert range is in the springtime. Cliven explained to the BLM guys that he had no big feed lot on which to hold his cattle during the spring -- even if he could afford to do so, with hay now at $400. The only option they were giving him was to sell his cattle for slaughter in February, and then to buy new stock and put them on the land in July. He says the BLM guys told him that would be fine.

But from mid-summer through February, cattle on a desert range LOSE weight. Besides which, "You can't bring in cattle from elsewhere and start them in this desert," Bundy explains. "If they're not raised on this range by their mamas, who show them what to eat, those cattle starve."

But you can't outlast the federal government, nor beat them with logic, principle, hard work or evidence

Mark my words: Within 30 years, though it's unlikely either I or Cliven Bundy will be here to say "I told you so," there will be a popular movement to bring back cattle ranching in the West -- a rich culture and proud way of life and a source of healthier, more nutritious locally produced food, a culture willfully and spitefully destroyed during our current era, with all the ironies of our supposed celebration of "multiculturism."

Problem is, no one will remember how to do it. And -- the generational links broken with the forced retirements of old-timers like Wayne Hage and Cliff Gardner and Cliven Bundy -- there will be no one left to ask.

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Old 04-11-2012, 07:43 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I am convinced the problems this country have are a direct result of our federal government limiting our citizens ability to harvest the natural resources that we are provided. Be it Forestry, Grazing, Mining or drilling for fossil fuel. It is truly a shame that our leaders can't see that the one thing we possess, that can make our country strong and solvent through proper management is the very thing they stifle due to the influence of the radical environmentalists.
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Old 04-11-2012, 08:31 AM   #3 (permalink)
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This story was heartbreaking to me.

There is another story that's similar in Nye Conty, the difference is the Constitutional Sheriff is backing this last grazing Family and is refusing to let the BLM destroy them.

Sheriff Tony DeMeo

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Old 04-11-2012, 09:17 AM   #4 (permalink)
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That sucks, the region they're talking about is one of my favorite places to go wheeling, camping, and small game hunting. I've gotten used to seeing the free range cattle. It's even more stupid because there's absolutely no other productive usage of the region's resources, it's a couple hundred square miles without a single house, paved road, or powerline, and no active mines for at least several decades now.

Other than the main dirt road in to Gold Butte (old mining camp, nobody's lived there for 60 years), there's rarely anyone else in the whole area, it's very remote. If you go all the way to the lake you'll be about 70 miles from the nearest gas station, and almost 50 miles from the nearest house. And unlike most of the surrounding desert, there's many seasonal, and a few permanent creeks if you know where to look in the mountains. I guess my point is if anything they should be allowing him to have more cattle, since nobody else is using the land.

And they're not really helping anything either, the wild burros and bighorns will just expand their populations to eat up what the cattle's not anymore, so just as many precious little baby desert tortoises are going to get squashed.

On the bright side, I guess next time I go there I can shoot any cattle I see? free steak?

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Old 04-11-2012, 10:04 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Water seems to be the underlying issue with most everything. Take note.
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:36 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Half way between the headwaters for the Stanislaus/Mokelumne Rivers and Lake Alpine off Hwy 4 on an old cattle trail sets an old cattle cabin. As a kid, sons of men our family knew took me with them there many times to stay for a few days and check on their cattle.

They didn't haul 'em up there, they drove 'em! Hundreds of them guided by the sons and their Fathers on horseback blocked the streets of many towns along the way. The local Police would setup traffic control along the route to aid public safety.

Once upon a time in the Forests around NorCAL, the sound of cow bells in the distance was so common we never paid any attention and it lulled us to sleep at night . . . sadly those days are LONG GONE!!!


Dug this up . . . it is a small example of what the large drives I mention were like 45 years prior in that country.

The Last Cattle Drive . . . http://thepinetree.net/index.php?ANN...odule=announce

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Old 04-11-2012, 10:38 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Yep - just like the FS now trying to obtain Water rights from the Ski resorts here in the Sierras and Nationally...

http://espn.go.com/action/freeskiing...r-rights-issue

Quote:
A battle over water rights
National Ski Areas Association to sue U.S. Forest Service over water rights issue



By Jason Blevins
ESPN.com



Ski resorts are feuding with their Forest Service landlord over a water rights clause in updated ski area permitting regulations that keeps water rights tied to the land, not the resort operator.

After intense lobbying -- which included stern letters from a host of congressman and senators -- last week the Forest Service rebuffed the calls for a moratorium and issued the new rule as an 18-month moratorium. The resort industry, led by the 121-resort National Ski Areas Association, answered with a promise to sue the agency, which hosts nearly 90 percent of all U.S. ski areas.

"This has to do with water rights in general and how water rights are treated," said Michael Berry, president of the NSAA. "We believe they have crossed the rubicon and this has the potential to be very, very impactful. We have no guarantee that they will continue to use the water for purposes of ski area business."

Since 2004, the Forest Service has co-owned water rights secured by ski areas operating on federal land. Before that, under the 1986 National Forest Ski Area Permit Act, ski area water rights on public land were owned by the federal government. So really, said Jim Pena, acting chief of the Forest Service, "this isn't new."

"This permit clause is intended to clarify some of the gray areas," Pena said. "This was a result of lots of discussion with the ski industry over the last year. This requires that water rights on National Forest System land remain with the federal government so we don't severe that resource from the land."

Water rights in Western states are regulated by the states and often acquired on the open market, with resort operators paying top dollar to secure water for snowmaking and base area development. Vail Resorts, the largest resort operator in North America, holds more than $18.2 million in water rights. Colorado water attorney Glenn Porzak, who often works for Vail Resorts, testified to a House subcommittee in November that the change to water ownership rules amounted to federal seizure of private property.

"It is unprecedented to require the ski industry to surrender ownership of valuable assets to the U.S. Government without any compensation," Porzak told the told the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forest and Public Lands. "Requiring ski areas to transfer ownership or limit the sale of water rights without compensation is no different than the government forcing the transfer of ownership of gondolas or chairlifts, snowcats, or snowmobiles or even exercising eminent domain without any compensation. All water right owners, not just ski areas, should be concerned about this precedent."

Porzak said last week that the ski industry would sue the Forest Service to block the new water rights provision.

Colorado Democratic Sens. Mark Udall and Michael Bennett joined Western Republican Sens. John Barrasso and James Risch in December urging the Forest Service to delay implementation of the new clause.

"Without going into the merits of the water clause itself, it is apparent to us that a careful review of the practical implication of the clause to ski area operations and the changes that would occur under this new clause would prove beneficial to all parties involved," reads the letter the four senators sent to the agency.

Pena said his agency has already issued three new operator permits -- in Colorado, Washington and California -- with the new clause and those were accepted without any problems. "If a permittee develops water for the activity on (state) public land, they are required to develop that water in the name of the state. It's the same with National Parks and the Fish and Wildlife Service as well," Pena said. "It all goes back to wanting to make sure those public resources are kept together and we want to provide that stability for the long term."

The agency issued the provision as an interim directive and promises to work with the ski industry before the provision is finalized in 18 months. While rebuffing calls for a moratorium, the agency will weigh individual permits that may be impacted by the new water rights rule.
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:39 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LYIN' KING View Post
Half way between the headwaters for the Stanislaus/Mokelumne Rivers and Lake Alpine off Hwy 4 on an old cattle trail sets an old cattle cabin. As a kid, sons of men our family knew took me with them there many times to stay for a few days and check on their cattle.

They didn't haul 'em up there, they drove 'em! Hundreds of them guided by the sons and their Fathers on horseback blocked the streets of many towns along the way. The local Police would setup traffic control along the route to aid public safety.

Once upon a time in the Forests around NorCAL, the sound of cow bells in the distance was so common we never paid any attention and it lulled us to sleep at night . . . sadly those days are LONG GONE!!!

7N09 Corral Hollow....



And some Corral Hollow Cows

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Old 04-11-2012, 10:54 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I think those two issues are completely different, and I'm on the fence on the water rights one.

For one thing, it's the National Forest Service, not the BLM. Very different. And they're simply reversing a 8 year old decision. However, I think they should refund whatever those resorts had to pay for those water rights 8 years ago if they're going to take them away. It's not like the forest service is going to cut off their water supply, but the ski resorts need to remember that they're making crapload of money while still being guests (with a VERY high environmental impact) on NFS land.

The cattle issue, they've been ranching that land since before BLM existed, so technically BLM doesn't own it. And they have no legit reason for kicking him out, probably some environemtal terrorist group forcing BLM's hand.
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:55 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Been by that one and there are many in that country, the old store/cabin on the Long Valley/Pardo trail is one of my favorites that use to be accessible via motorized means.

Old cattle ranchers kept whiskey stashed in an old stump there for journeys on horseback in the day.
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:58 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Here's one of the cattle in question in Cedar Basin, can't you see how much he's destroying the area? And one of their favorite creeks, there were cow patties everywhere. We're not talking about a lot of water here, just a marshy area with a trickle of water running out of it.




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Old 04-11-2012, 11:31 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Knoll View Post
Water seems to be the underlying issue with most everything. Take note.
Underlying issue is money.
Water = money.

John Stewart has been waving the water flag for years................
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Old 04-11-2012, 12:48 PM   #13 (permalink)
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This makes me sick as hell. We have a good friend who runs cows out by Virginia city. He has a leases though BLM. I hope he can hold on to them.

The cows clean the land, in the forest they keep the under growth down to control the forest fires. Now taking those cows off that desert land will let growth like, Juniper trees come back, but it will suck all the water up. Soon those springs will be dry because the plants and non-native trees are pulling all the water out of the ground.

Just a damn shame.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:23 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Looking through some older pictures, found a couple more of springs in the area affected.



(Edit: If he picks up and takes that fence I bet this hole will quickly become a popular destination for flatbiller white trash from vegas to go muddin and completely destroy.)


Here's one of the many improvements, and probably largest, on the land I'm guessing made by Cliven Bundy's family. There are also several other small tanks scattered around fed from small pipes coming out of the ground. Usually not more than a shallow puddle in the tanks, but I still have every one I've found marked in my GPS in case of emergency out here. There's also small corrals every few miles, a few are larger wood ones like this one, some just barb wire circles.


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Old 04-11-2012, 01:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
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We need more sheriffs like DeMeo who will fight the federal government to protect our constitutional rights. I know we have a few sheriffs up in Northern California who have refused to enforce closures in the national forests.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:32 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Yet more examples of how everything the government touches just gets ruined.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:56 PM   #17 (permalink)
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But you can't outlast the federal government, nor beat them with logic, principle, hard work or evidence
We've seen that time and time again.

By intent or by accident, driven by nitwits like CBD, our agencies repeatedly wind up making bad decisions... and kicking cattle off the range will only add to the problem of over-fueled forests filled with under-growth and ladder fuels, leaving thick, brushy forests contribute to the crop value reduction, which the CBD also drives. When there's no lumber industry, there's nobody to do fuels reduction... I bet we'll only see that worsen as grazing continues to drop off, it is an ugly feedback loop, and the very organizations that profess to care so much for the forests, are contributing to killing them. Saving the spotted owl in the short term doesn't help if he gets cooked in a forest fire in the long term.

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Old 04-11-2012, 02:03 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fermentor View Post
Underlying issue is money.
Water = money.

John Stewart has been waving the water flag for years................
And yet like the rest of us, powerless to stop it.

Question is....now what?
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Old 04-11-2012, 03:34 PM   #19 (permalink)
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The environmentalists have infiltrated ever aspect of our federal government. We need to do the same. Anything less will not work. Get those who believe in freedom off the couch, off the web, off their butts, and start participating in our Government. spend less on stretching every dollar into a purchase of toys, and spend more on buying influence. Track the economic impact motorized recreation generates in every location it takes place.

Stop fighting among ourselves and look at the real enemy of freedom. Stop thinking we can't effect change, and no matter how small do what we can.

Search for solutions that make sense, and sometimes bend on an item to gain respect. Have a plan before we react. Organize, Motivate, and Foster growth among our ranks.

Do I need to continue? The choir already knows what needs to be done, how do we reach those outside the building and invite them in should be the question.

The issues facing our country reach far beyond Off roading. We have some pretty serious problems, and sadly most all of us know, but most all won't react. I fear for the quality of life my children will have.
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Old 04-11-2012, 05:39 PM   #20 (permalink)
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7N09 Corral Hollow....

I know that place! I took the kids riding there early on in their ATV careers. lol. North side of Hwy 4....not too far from Bear Valley ski resort.
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Old 04-11-2012, 05:52 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I know that place! I took the kids riding there early on in their ATV careers. lol. North side of Hwy 4....not too far from Bear Valley ski resort.
Yup, Prius territory . . . nice for a day trip family picnic. Soon even they'll have to walk in!!!
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Old 04-12-2012, 12:17 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Yup, Prius territory . . . nice for a day trip family picnic. Soon even they'll have to walk in!!!
No the government will just give them special stickers that will let them on the trails just like they have the stickers that will let them drive in the carpool lanes.
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:25 AM   #23 (permalink)
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BLM warns it will round up rancher's cattle from public land

BLM warns it will round up rancher's cattle from public land

http://www.lvrj.com/news/blm-warns-i...146948495.html

Quote:
By Keith Rogers
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL
Posted: Apr. 11, 2012 | 2:00 a.m.
Updated: Apr. 11, 2012 | 7:59 a.m.

BUNKERVILLE -- A long-simmering feud between rancher Cliven Bundy and federal land managers over grazing cattle on public land in the Gold Butte area may soon boil over as the Bureau of Land Management prepares to round up his 500-head herd.

Bundy contends that Clark County, not the BLM, is the proper landlord for the public lands. However, a roundup planned for today has been temporarily pushed back, the rancher said late Tuesday.

Bundy, 65, known as the last rancher running cattle year-round on a Southern Nevada range, received a letter Monday from BLM District Manager Mary Jo Rugwell that said he continues to be in violation of a 1998 federal court injunction to stop grazing cattle on public lands.

"The BLM issued you a notice of intent to impound on July 26, 2011 after your livestock were found grazing on public lands within the Gold Butte area without authorization in areas that are closed to grazing," Rugwell wrote in the letter dated April 3.

"Subsequent livestock checks have confirmed that your livestock remain on public lands and that you remain in violation of a permanent injunction."

Rugwell's letter said Bundy will be contacted after the cattle are removed, "and you will have an opportunity to claim any cattle that bear your brand."

A second letter he received this week from the local BLM district orders him to remove his water systems, fences, equipment and other range improvements from public land.

During a tour Tuesday of the Gold Butte area, Bundy said he intends to resist efforts by a government contractor to round up his cattle. His family and ancestors have grazed cattle and lived on the range about 80 miles northeast of Las Vegas since 1877.

Asked whether he would be armed while doing so, Bundy said, "I'm going to protect my livestock and the ranch. I hope it doesn't come to that point. I'm going to hold the state and ... the elected authorities responsible."

SHERIFF'S PEACEKEEPERS

Bundy said Sheriff Doug Gillespie met with him twice at his house in the past few days. Gillespie said his officers would be present as peacekeepers, Bundy recalled. Gillespie was the one who notified Bundy that the roundup had been delayed, the rancher said in a Tuesday night email.

"The emergency for tomorrow's range war seems to be declining," the email said. "I have been contacted by Clark County Sheriff Gillespie and the raid on my cattle has been temporarily suspended!"

Earlier, Bundy referenced the preamble of the U.S. Constitution and said he believes the sheriff "has an obligation to protect life, liberty and the property of 'We the people.' Federal rangers have no jurisdiction or authority, no policing power or arresting power."

"In talking to the sheriff, I said, 'If you have guts enough to say no (to the BLM), this issue would be over.' "

Dave Bundy, one of Bundy's sons, sent an email Tuesday to family friends before word of the roundup delay reached them. It said: "This unconstitutional federal overrun is a cancer that is destroying our free way of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness and is spreading throughout our entire nation."

Dave Bundy's email goes on to state that the BLM has hired a contractor that specializes "in putting ranchers out of business by collecting their cattle for the BLM. They plan on making this move on Cliven on Wednesday."

"We need you to join and rally with us to stop this movement. We the people can make a difference ... Saddle up and be ready," Dave Bundy wrote.

Cliven Bundy stopped paying grazing allotment fees to the BLM years ago and tried to pay them to Clark County after his federal grazing allotment was canceled in 1994 to protect habitat for the threatened desert tortoise and other sensitive species.

For 18 years he has bucked the BLM's authority and continued to graze cattle in the area. He estimates he runs 500 head of adult cattle on 120 square miles in the Gold Butte area that he calls his "ranch." The area includes 160 acres of private property near Bunkerville where his father built a house in 1951. Bundy and his wife, Carol, have raised 14 children there.

He said his problems with the BLM began in the early 1990s when the agency started "managing land to get ranchers and cattle off of it."

"No more moo in '92 and cattle-free in '93," he recalled ranchers saying of BLM policy.

Then, about one-fourth of grazing fees were supposed to be used by the BLM for range improvements and one-eighth for management. Bundy stopped paying his fees about that time. The BLM didn't cancel his Bunkerville allotment in 1994, Bundy contends -- he fired them.

"I'll be damned if I'm going to pay them to manage my ranch," he said Tuesday.

He said his firing of the BLM came about through letters he wrote to the solicitor of the United States and the BLM's national and state offices.

The BLM accused him of trespassing in a 1998 U.S. District Court case in Las Vegas. He lost and appealed to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, but the court upheld the injunction to remove his cattle from the public range.

Bundy asserts that the federal government has unlimited power over public land only if the land is a territory. He said the land where he grazes cattle was not owned by anybody but has been occupied by American Indian tribes and Mexico. It became U.S. territory through wars and remained as such until Nevada became a state.

'SOVEREIGN STATE'

"When Nevada became a state, it became a sovereign state with subdivisions in county governments," Bundy asserted. "We, the people, elect county sheriffs and pay the sheriffs with the county commissions to protect our life, liberty and property. The people of Clark County must own the public land in Clark County because the federal government, according to the Constitution, can't own property."

That's why Gillespie and his deputies are supposed to be peacemakers in his fight with the BLM, he said. Their job is to protect private property and "keep the federal government from stealing it."

Bundy said the ordeal has been "a strain on my family. We've been busy trying to defend ourselves."
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Last edited by Bebe; 04-12-2012 at 07:35 AM.
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:34 AM   #24 (permalink)
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My thoughts and prayers go out to this family - this Man of the West. It's heart breaking to just sit here and watch this take place.

This is a perfect example of how even when the this entire situation is so wrong, from the beginning, no one has the power to stop it. He's done a great job of keeping them at bay, I wish the Sheriff would stand up and say "You're not taking this Man's Cattle".

Gawd Dammmmmit.
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Old 04-12-2012, 08:13 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Another example of the rampant over-reach of our government.
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