September 18, 2018

The Realization of the Power of Centralized Government

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*Editor’s Note* – As with all guest posts, the views expressed may or may not be the position of this editor/administrator. Having clarified that, I believe there are more than the three choices Mr. Beers has presented to readers. But I’ll save that for another time. Enjoy the article.

A story by James Beers:

HOW?

(A colleague recently asked the question, “I do not understand how the EU has such authority about wolf populations in countries around Europe.  Each country has its own singular problems with a wolf population.  It seems to me to be reasonable that each country should make its own regulations about how to control its wolf population.”  The following is an answer…  Jim) 

The EU has such authority for precisely the same reason that Washington, DC has the same authority in Washington.  The past 50 years have seen simultaneous explosions in two areas of US and European governance:

  1. Centralization of all authority and jurisdiction in one central point; Brussels for Europe and Washington in the US.  Brussels was created for all manner of reforms from saving Europe from a WW III; growing an economy to compete with the US; and deterring the Soviets from gobbling it up.  This centralization of laws, Parliamentary power and bureaucracy subservient to the politicians in Brussels who then, in turn, became both unanswerable and unaccountable to anyone except their own personal interests and somewhat to the “elected” national leaders that played a game called “two canoes”.  “Two canoes” is played by persons (national leaders) paddling in a race downstream, each in two canoes with one foot in each one.  The two canoes represent the central EU government and the citizens of the country they ostensible represent.  The winner of the race gets the most money and power that is controlled by the Brussels politicians and bureaucrats actually ruling Europe.

The exact same thing took place in the US.  Jurisdictions and authorities that were Constitutionally and traditionally both Local and State were absorbed by a growing federal government starting during WW I when the Democrat Party controlled the Presidency, the Congress and the Courts.  They established a federal Income Tax and changed the basic nature of the US Senate from representatives of States to a House of Lords where Senators became national and international interest group’ advocates approving Treaties and federal appointments in return for lobbyists’ money and emoluments. After 50 years of Depression, WW II and Soviet travails, the expanding federal centralization reached a critical mass when Vietnam and the Free Love/Drugs/Anarchy exploded in the US.  Central authority was the “only” answer to put down riots, stop drug smuggling and take over the schools that were pumping out all those “hippies”, etc.

  1. It was during the 1960’s and 70’s (Watergate/Inflation/Counterculture, etc.) that the “environmental/animal rights” movement began laying eggs in both the US and Europe.  The eggs were laid in the warm and fuzzy nest of the all-powerful central governments.  The politicians and bureaucrats in Brussels and Washington saw the eggs as sure political winners as they expanded central controls.  Europe and the US saw an explosion of “environmental” and “animal rights” laws emanating from Brussels and Washington.

First were the “global cooling” discoveries that came from the Universities threatening a second Ice Age due to human activities that, if not controlled by central governments, would destroy civilization and crop production for a thousand miles North or South of the Equator. This morphed later into “global warming” that threatened to drown coastal areas from melting Ice Caps and rising seas.  America’s E and W Coasts were going to run through Ohio and Utah respectively.  Hunting, animals as experimental objects, animal husbandry, and animals as property were all to be banned.

Right behind those scares came the calls for “Clean Air” and “Clean Water” laws that confirmed new central authorities over air “polluters” like cars, power plants, and manufacturing processes; and water “polluters” like farmers, cities, and disposal practices.  Universities worked overtime for grant funds from central government bureaucracies; and politicians crowded each other for publicity and votes as they passed laws for banning all manner of human activities and societal traditions.  None of this is to say that cleaning up air and water pollution was not worthy but, I believe it is inarguable that the magnitude of central government mandates often exceeded common sense and any fair cost-benefit analysis.  Yet, the greater magnitude and most important aspect of growing central control; more urban support and bureaucratic growth (and compensation) were generated and legal precedents were established over former and vanishing national or state-controlled activities; was the real reason for this agenda’s survival, no matter what.

To call the 1970’s anything other than the period confirming central government ascendancy over state (in the US) and national (in Europe) powers of governance would be to misread history.  On the heels of all the air and water cleansing came the federal environmental/animal rights’ laws.  Wilderness, Endangered Species, Wild Horses and Burros, Marine Mammals, New Bird Treaties, Estuarine Areas, Scenic Rivers, Parks, Sanctuaries, etc. Acts established all manner of new or increased central government jurisdictions over everything from frogs and flies to whales and wolves.  UN Conventions and Treaties were drafted by central government bureaucrats to confirm and expand their own central government authorities.  The words “Ecosystem” and “Protect” appeared and were heard everywhere.  Central government politicians were canonized for “saving” everything: central government bureaucrats were paid more and more to manage bigger budgets and more employees to fulfill all the promised benefits: and Universities became integral partners grinding out (for grant money, notoriety and tenure) all the “science” the bureaucrats paid for to justify and discover new reasons for, and benefits of the, “New Normal”.

Thus, in answer to the question:

“I do not understand how the EU has such authority about wolf populations in countries around Europe.  Each country has its own singular problems with a wolf population.  It seems to me to be reasonable that each country should make its own regulations about how to control its wolf population.”

The answer is, there is NO OTHER REAL AUTHORITY today in either Europe or the US.  The national responsibility in Europe to protect the rural citizenry from wolf depredations, dangers and destruction was passed to Brussels that both birthed the wolf problem in the first place and has no incentive to abandon all the urban animal rights’ myths and love for wolves that supports continued expansion of central government authority.  The wolves are destroying the sheep, endangering hunters, decreasing game, killing and mating with dogs thereby depopulating rural areas and making more land available for government to take over for urban fancies from Wilderness to Parks.  Likewise, State authorities over wildlife in the US have been absorbed by central government politicians and bureaucrats.  State governors, like European national leaders, play the “two canoes” game like Olympic athletes getting medals, money and publicity from central government overlords that get money from the environmental/animal rights’ organizations and then tax the public more and more to support the scams they invent to maintain power over everything from gardens to plastic straws.

European and American shepherds, ranchers, hunters, fishermen, loggers, and rural residents are living in a make-believe world where wolves are good, and livestock are bad.  Where vegans are good; and meat eaters are bad.  Where wolves are good; and domestic dogs are bad.  Where catastrophic forest fires are good; and loggers and grazers are bad.  Where far-off, remote and unaccountable central governments are good; and National/State/Local governments (closer to the people and accountable to them) are bad.

That is “how the EU (and Washington) has such authority about wolf populations.”

There are only three choices.

  1. We begin reforming these central governments incrementally into what they were 50 or 100 years ago.
  2. We fight the central governments like the Brexit voters and the State of Wyoming have done and strike for an immediate (as far as that is humanly possible) reversal of central government authority and re-establishment of State, National and Local authorities and jurisdictions.
  3. We just shrug, like Atlas, and watch freedom, liberty and accountable government disappear in the world we are leaving our children and grandchildren.

I vote for #2.

Jim Beers

3 September 2018

If you found this worthwhile, please share it with others.  Thanks.

Jim Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow. He was stationed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York City, and Washington DC.  He also served as a US Navy Line Officer in the western Pacific and on Adak, Alaska in the Aleutian Islands.  He has worked for the Utah Fish & Game, Minneapolis Police Department, and as a Security Supervisor in Washington, DC.  He testified three times before Congress; twice regarding the theft by the US Fish & Wildlife Service of $45 to 60 Million from State fish and wildlife funds and once in opposition to expanding Federal Invasive Species authority.  He resides in Eagan, Minnesota with his wife of many decades.

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