One of America's leading authorities on technology and telecom policy, Motley is a writer, television and radio commentator, political and policy strategist, lecturer, debater, activist, and policy advisor to The Heartland Institute.
Latest posts by Seton Motley (see all)
- The US Should Ban Spying China From Selling Us Commuter Trains – Especially In DC - January 16, 2019
- Let’s Not Let One Billionaire Crony Decide What Fifty States Do About Online Gambling - January 10, 2019
- One Year Later, The Left’s Net Neutrality Lies Look Even Dumber - December 18, 2018
I have a (somewhat tongue-in-cheek) rule for federal government departments, agencies, commissions and boards: Barring a Constitutional amendment, if a bureaucracy was created after 1800 – it shouldn’t exist.
The Founding Fathers who wrote the Constitution – were by 1800 thoroughly implementing it. If they didn’t yet have the federal government doing something – the federal government wasn’t to be doing it. So unless a subsequent amendment added an authority to the federal panoply – it’s been an unConstitutional addition.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was created in 1970 – WAY past our sell-by date. Our nation got along just fine for nearly two centuries without this particular federal usurpation. Was the Constitution first amended to give the federal government the authority to override how fifty individual states each respectively decide how to handle environmental issues? Of course not.
Did Congress pretend to be a unilateral, illegal amendment process and pass legislation creating the EPA? Not even: “Pseudo-Republican Richard Nixon created the mess in 1970 in typical DC fashion. He pretended to be (a one-man Constitutional amendment process) – and signed an executive order. The Democrat-controlled Congress then pretended to be (two-thirds of the states) – and ‘ratified’ the EPA with committee hearings.…”
So the entirety of the EPA is Constitutionally illegitimate. It is through this prism that we should examine its actions. Which are unilateral, authoritarian, bullying and amateurish. Time and again they grab more and more power and authority over our lives – all while failing miserably at the things over which they already lord.
The latest example of their awfulness? “An EPA official was caught red-handed with full knowledge of the danger of an environmental spill at Colorado’s Gold King Mine in emails discovered by the Denver Post, but the agency downplayed any knowledge of the hazard to the public. As 3 million gallons of lead, cadmium and other chemicals polluted the Animas River, the EPA pretty well tried to downplay the severity of that, too.”
An EPA screwup of MASSIVE proportions. Followed by an equally huge attempted coverup. And yet literally no one in government was fired for the fiasco. And does their fiasco stop them from abusing a business accused of a MUCH smaller error? Of course not: “On the same day when the Denver Post printed the story above, the Department of Justice announced the latest criminal sentencing in connection with the Elk River spill.
“‘A former owner of Freedom Industries was sentenced today to 30 days in federal prison, six months of supervised release, and a $20,000 fine for environmental crimes connected to the 2014 Elk River chemical spill…. (Dennis P.) Farrell is one of six former officials of Freedom Industries, in addition to Freedom Industries itself as a corporation, to be prosecuted for federal crimes associated with the chemical spill.’
“Was this private company dealt with so harshly because the Elk River spill was larger than the EPA’s Animas River discharge? No: the Elk River spill was only 7,500 gallons, compared with three million gallons the EPA discharged into the Animas River.”
Get that? Six private sector employees and the company itself prosecuted – for spilling 0.0025% of what the EPA spilled. An EPA spill which resulted in zero bureaucrats prosecuted – or even canned.
The EPA can’t handle its business – but it sure as heck wants to man-handle ours.
And, of course, the EPA continues to unilaterally, illegally and omni-directionally expand its authority. But one such additional assault? “You want to kneecap farmers? And make food exorbitantly more expensive? Turn farmers’ water into a weapon against them.
“‘The issue is the EPA’s proposed changes to the Waters of the United States regulation. In March, the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers proposed new rules that would expand the agency’s regulatory authority on streams and wetlands that feed into major rivers and lakes….
“‘(T)he rules…(would) allow the government to dictate what farmers can and cannot do with their farmland, which often includes small streams, ponds and marshes.’”
Given all we know – who do you think knows better how to treat and handle farmland? The farmers – who live and earn their living on it? Or faceless bureaucrats far removed from the land – and the consequences of their heinous actions?
If farmers screw up their land – farmers don’t eat. If bureaucrats screw up farmers’ land – farmers don’t eat. And NOTHING happens to the bureaucrats.
Farmers are just like the rest of us. The less government there is – the better things are for them. Less government domestically – like the ridiculous EPA. And less government internationally – like eliminating all government meddling in farm markets.
We the People handle with care. Government man-handles with impunity.