Skip to comments.Western states seeking ways to reclaim federal land
Posted on 04/19/2014 10:37:15 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
A nascent rebellion by western states looking to reclaim some of the land that was appropriated by the federal government is taking shape. A group of about 50 western lawmakers from 9 states met in Utah to discuss ways to bring about a revolution in land management that would see the states have a mich bigger say in how their own land is managed.
Salt Lake Tribune:
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.
"It’s simply time," said Rep. Ken Ivory, R-West Jordan, who organized Legislative Summit on Transfer for Public Lands along with Montana state Sen. Jennifer Fielder. "The urgency is now."
Utah House Speaker Becky Lockhart, R-Provo, was flanked by a dozen participants, including her counterparts from Idaho and Montana, during a press conference after the daylong closed-door summit. U.S. Sen. Mike Lee addressed the group over lunch, Ivory said. New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Wyoming, Oregon and Washington also were represented.
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, Lockhart said.
"What’s happened in Nevada is really just a symptom of a much larger problem," Lockhart said.
Fielder, who described herself as "just a person who lives in the woods," said federal land management is hamstrung by bad policies, politicized science and severe federal budget cuts.
"Those of us who live in the rural areas know how to take care of lands,"
(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...
OK, folks, I’d like to spark a discussion of the intent of the framers when they added this article in the constitution:
Article IV, Section 3, Clause 2 :
The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State.
Was their intent in this clause for the Federal Government to own vast amounts of land for conservation and management? If not, what was the purpose of this article?
States taking land from the Feds by the eminent domain process ?
What was the intent of Article IV Section 3 Clause 2?
A quick background as to why the BLM should not be harassing Cliven Bundy. This issue goes all the way back to the Confederation Papers, prior to the writing of our US Constitution.
Please remember that the Supreme Court has reversed more than 150 of earlier Supreme Court decisions on natural law. Is that what you would consider as someone being consistent and reliable in interpreting the Constitution?
The Resolution of 1780, "the federal trust respecting public lands obligated the united States to extinguish both their governmental jurisdiction and their title to land that achieved statehood."
In the Constitutional Convention of 1787, The Charter of Liberty contained these words, "The new Federal Government is an agent serving the states.", "The delegated powers are few and defined", "All powers not listed are retained by the states or the people", "The Resolution of 1780 formed the basis upon which Congress was required to dispose of territorial and public lands", "All laws shall be made by the Congress of the United States". (not agency bureaucrats!)
That should be sufficient for you to determine who all public lands belong to, hint - NOT the Federal Government!
"The Constitution is a written instrument. As such, it's meaning does not alter. That which it meant when adopted. it means now". So said the Supreme Court in South Carolina v United States in 1905
Articles of Confederation, Article VI, clause 1 All engagements entered into before the adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation. In Article IX "... no State shall be deprived of territory for the benefit of the United States."
Formation of a "more perfect union" does not absolve that union of prior engagements, including those obligations establish by the resolution of 1780 and the Articles of Confederation.
Our government system is established by compact, not between the Government and the State Governments but between the States as Sovereign Communities. By James Madison 1821 (This is what make the County Sheriffs the highest law enforcement officer in that County and gives him/her the authority to tell the BLM, the FBI or any other Federal Agency to get out of the County or they will be arrested and jailed.)
What I have written here is but a short piece of the process that the Founder went through to establish our Constitution and system of government.
Please view these videos and see if they don't change your mind about whether or not Cliven Bundy is in the wrong by defying the BLM.
Here's one that shows why the Sheriff of Clark County is duty bound to keep the BLM and all Federal agents from arresting Cliven Bundy.
But on the whole, once a geographical area becomes a state, then the land is owned and controlled by the state government and not by the federal government.
Where this will get interesting is in the Indian Reservations, and the National Parks. The Constitution doesn't provide for such things, and the Feds aren't likely to want to change the current arrangement. And then there's the broader issue of BLM turf. It's hard to weaken the Fed.
But I would say that if the states just moved in, put stakes in the ground and said, "This is ours", then it seems to me unlikely that the Federal Government would move in with guns blazing. It's not a civil war. It's not a rebellious rancher. It's not weird religious cult. It's just a state government saying, "This is land is my land."
Property belonging to the U-N-I-T-E-D S-T-A-T-E-S.
Now comes Art 1 Sec 8 which spells specifically out what they are allowed to do. ..AND they have to be uniform throughout these United States.
The the 17th enumerated power, or 17th clause if you will, where it list specifically the lands allowed the federal government to hold.
The answer is implicit in the question.
To answer your first question, no it was not. The framers did not invision the federal government owning land within the states, they saw states as sovereign entities. The only land the feds owned was “unclaimed” land, meaning unclaimed by a state - not within the borders of any state. This clause was put in to allow the federal government to prevent massive annexation by states as the western expansion continued.
Here, go read the original article posted by Jim Rob.
2 Kings 6:15-18
To those who scorn art 1 Sec 8. If any part of the constitution is ignored, then the whole of it is ignored.
Aside this, if these lands were intended for the sole ownership of the federal government, then why are they MANAGED AS A TRUST? There would be no need for any such management by the federal government.
The trust notion is in fact the key. They can not hold any lands, by may manage them as a trust.
They have violated that trust, so therefore it no longer is in effect. All the states have to do is fire them, and take over that land and manage it as they see fit.
I am confident the states can manage it better than the feds. I wish the folks working this conference all the best, and will support them politically in any way I can. But we shouldn't pretend that the federal government ended up owning this land out of greed. They just could not give much of it away because in many places, land without water rights is nothing.
And guess how much that would bring into the local treasury?
Mine Baby Mine.
Log baby log.
Farm baby farm.
I know you’ve been all over this issue, I’ve done a little research myself and would like to know your thoughts.
From what I can tell, it comes down to this:
BLM issues “Grazing permits” that require compliance with their Terms and Conditions. This includes a limit on the number of cattle (as a result of pressure from environmentalists)
If a Rancher has less cattle grazing on public lands he will lose the rights to the water since he is not using the water.
The BLM has been consistently shrinking the acreage for these allotments for well over 20 years.
The BLM is engaged in a two, maybe three step process to drive the rancher out of business.
They are forcing the rancher into a catch 22. Agree to the terms and they lose their water rights, without the water rights they can’t allow their cattle on public lands.
It seems to be more about the water than anything else.
Keep in mind these “water rights” are not for “resale” but for use by cattle.
The BLM has been slowly reducing access by shrinking the allotments and forcing a reduction of livestock (terms and Conditions) that, in turn forces the reduction/forfeiture of “water-rights” (lack of use), that ultimately forces the rancher out of business.
That’s my understanding.
Please point out where I may be wrong.
“Was their intent in this clause for the Federal Government to own...”
I haven’t seen evidence that the Federal Government is the owner. The owner is, or owners are, the United States. Each of the sovereign states has an ownership interest as far as I can tell. The Federal Government is just an (out of control) agent for the States.
Article III, Section 3, second clause says: The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State.
Im not sure how the second half plays, but the first half certainly shows that the United States (not the Federal Government) retains Territory or other Property belonging to the United States.
At the time that was mostly the Northwest Territory won from England as a result of the Revolutionary War, but later on other territory came to belong to the United States through the Louisiana Purchase, the purchase of territory from Mexico after the Mexican-American War, and the Alaska purchase.
When States were created from all that territory, Congress just didnt dispose of all the land to the newly created States.
Now here are some things to think about:
How can a state or group of States take as their own territory within their state boundaries with out permission of the fifty United States if said territory is owned by the United States?
How do property rights play in this?
What Constitutional authority authorizes the purchases of the Louisiana Territory, the Southwest land from Mexico, and Alaska?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.