The Bureau of Land Management is a ‘gestapo’ according to officials who testified at a House hearing yesterday.
We have the beginnings of gestapos in every government agency and they are growing in power under the perceived authority of the President of the United States who rules this country via executive orders and “guidance” memos without any congressional oversight. He is militarizing his executive branch agencies and letting them run roughshod over citizens largely without restraint and supervision. They can’t be fired as we know.
One of the agencies that has become militarized and which has gone rogue is the Bureau of Land Management.
A hearing in the House on July 24th exposed a dangerous and persistent threat to our nation coming from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) which is allegedly intimidating citizens, threatening their rights, and creating a hostile environment.
At the hearing this week, the following was uncovered:
The House Natural Resources Committee chaired by Doc Hastings released the following:
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 24, 2014: Today, the Subcommittee on Public Lands and Environmental Regulations held an oversight hearing on “Threats, Intimidation and Bullying by Federal Land Managing Agencies.” This hearing continued Committee oversight into bullying by federal land management agencies and federal law enforcement agencies on private, state, and federal lands.
State and local governments, ranchers, business owners, and private citizens have been subject to threats, lack of cooperation, and numerous unfair or heavy-handed tactics which threaten public safety, the environment, endangered species, and the livelihoods of communities. Congressional oversight is necessary to provide an effective check on federal officials who abuse their regulatory powers.
“Today we took a second look at threats, intimidation and bullying by Federal Land Managing Agencies. During a hearing the Committee held last year and again today, we heard first-hand accounts of mistreatment at the hands of federal officials seeking to extort the witnesses into relinquishing their property rights,” said Representative Doug LaMalfa (CA-01). “These firsthand accounts give the victims of abusive conduct by a federal land managing official a chance to tell their story to Congress. Status quo agency oversight, policies and procedures are inadequate for addressing or deterring employee abuses and may instead embolden overreaching or malicious employee behavior with little risk of retribution for their actions.”
Witnesses highlighted examples of flagrant intimidation met by citizens who refuse to surrender their constitutional rights, land and water rights, grazing permits and other multiple-use benefits.
Sheriff James Perkins, Garfield County, UT, highlighted his perspective from 27 years of law enforcement and experience working with various federal law enforcement agencies.
“BLM’s attitude towards coordinating with local law enforcement is summed up best by a conversation I had with a BLM law enforcement officer while we were attending a drug task force meeting in Cedar City, Utah. He told me point blank that he didn’t care about any authority that I thought I had as the Garfield County Sheriff, and that he did not feel like he had to coordinate anything through my office… This refusal to coordinate, coupled with a lack of any meaningful oversight, has created a perfect environment where the abuse of federal law enforcement powers can occur.”
Leland Pollock, Garfield County Commissioner, Garfield County Utah, testified on how BLM law enforcement has moved away from a public service philosophy due to polarization of personnel and bullying and cancellation of cooperative agreements.
“Our concerns/ complaints are not just a matter of hurt feelings, bullying, intimidation, lack of integrity, and a host of social issues. BLM’s Chief of Law Enforcement has cost Garfield County real dollars… We are befuddled how one individual can override a State Director and negatively impact an entire county with impunity.”
A. Grant Gerber, Elko County Commissioner, Elko Nevada, discussed specific examples of wrongdoings, threats, intimidation, and bullying by both BLM law enforcement and a district manager.
“When I was a boy and as I grew up the few Federal Agents were mainly local or from rural areas and fit in well with the local area. They knew the people and worked cooperatively. Now the Federal agents are predominantly from outside the area and do not develop connections with the locals as was done previously. Many start off with a belligerent attitude, even a commanding presence. They are especially offended if anyone opposes any Federal Government actions. The worst are the Federal Law Enforcement Agents that arrogantly announce that they are not governed by Nevada law, but can enforce it if they choose. Now we have been informed, that without notice of hearings, the BLM has determined that two more BLM Law Enforcement Agents are necessary to control the people in the Elko area. All of this is resulting in less use of Federal Lands by citizens as the citizens become afraid of being accosted and berated.”
Jose Valera Lopez, President of the New Mexico Cattle Growers’ Association, Rancher, Santa Fe New Mexico, testified on current justifications Federal Land Managers use to intimidate and bully including Endangered Species protection and resource protection.
“Endangered species ‘protection’ is the biggest culprit. At the moment the Fish and Wildlife Service is considering critical habitat for the lesser prairie chicken, the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse, and two varieties of garter snakes. Expansion of the Mexican wolf habitat is expected as early as tomorrow. We have had 764,000 acres in New Mexico and Arizona recently designated critical habitat for the jaguar although only a few male jaguar have been sighted in the U.S. over the last 60 years… In my own case, the BLM has been buying up private lands near my family ranch within the boundaries of an Area of Critical Environmental Concern that they designated part of their Resource Management Plan. They not refer to our ranch as an in-holding. What this designation has done is de-valued our land and effectively prohibits any type of future development on the ranch.”
The armed BLM even intimidates visitors to the county according to Pollack.
Rep. Chris Stewart, a Utah Republican whose district includes Garfield County, pushed for his legislation that would defund what he says are paramilitary units within federal agencies that don’t need such heavily-armed forces, including the BLM.
This issues have been going on long before Obama came along. Our rancher and farmers have been uder attack for many many years. We have aloud this to happen. Issues like this is just touching the surface of the corruption in this country by our tyrannical government. It's just going to get worst.
Garfield County Commissioners are befuddled because they refuse to act... They need to get with their local prosecutor and sheriff and devise a legal plan to arrest and incarcerate BLM Agents that abuse their authority and powers... there are State laws which regulate such abuse by law enforcement. Use the law and arrest BLM agents... don't let them walk.
Federal Law enforcement officers... BLM agents, acting under the COLOR OF LAW are acting outside of the law and their authority. When a law officer operates out of his jurisdiction and authority they are MERE CITIZENS and as such don't have the cover and protection given police... they can not stop, detain, question, use force of arms or threats of violence against citizens when they are not in an official and or lawful status. Arrest them for assault, battery, assault with a deadly weapon(s) etc.
Lock them up and when the US Attorney calls...to spring them, tell him he has no jurisdiction and hang up. When the US Marshal shows up and tries to interfere tell him he is next... if he attempts to obstruct justice and a law enforcement officer doing his duty. We must all get down right confrontational if we are going to protect our constitutional rights as individuals and as sovereign states... In fact, the State Governor and AG may want to council with all the local sheriff's and prosecutors to devise a plan to handle out of control federal officers.
Unless the State and County's of America are willing to defend their liberty ... they will certainly loose it at the hands of tyrants. It is going to take backbone and CONFRONTATION to resolve these serious and growing problems with Federal Power attempting to encroach on State and local authority.
"It is going to take backbone and CONFRONTATION..."
True. It will be hard, though... Because of the 14th amendment. The feds come in fully believing the we low-lifes are merely subjects, and must do what we are told by anyone with a Federal title or a paper with the signature of one. THey will even 'enforce' that opinion with force of arms. (They'll hold a gun on you while you do what you are told!)
They don't want to hear about States Rights or individual rights. They don't want to know about the Sheriff being the highest power in the County, and in fact the State.
"Shut up and PAY YOUR 'TAXES' is the attitude you get from them.
That attitude must change... and it will take hardened and dedicated State officials to do it... the Attorney General and County Prosecutors need to get with the local Sheriff and city police chief too devise a plan of action to deal with Federal Officers that exceed their authority and jurisdiction... and then stick to the plan.
The State is going to have too lock up and send Federal Officers to prison before this is corrected. There will be major confrontations over State and Federal powers. I would suggest that the State AG's read Article 3, Section 2, Clause 2 and prepare briefs and filings to give to Federal District Court Judges telling them that they don't have JURISDICTION TO DO ANYTHING when a STATE IS PARTY to the action.
The US Constitution clearly states that the SCOTUS is the only Court with Jurisdiction to hear any case where a State is directly involved. The power struggle must start by stopping the Un-Constitutional application of federal judicial power over the States. See: Article 3, Section 2, Clause 2... for the court of original jurisdiction in all cases involving a State... it is the Supreme Court no inferior federal court has jurisdiction over a State. The Constitution is clear and any statutory or judicial ruling to the contrary is unconstitutional and void.
Thank God Almighty for our Contitution, particularly the 2nd Ammendment!
That my dear Thaaff, may be changed by Barack Obama with a pen and a phone, at any given moment. !!!!
I appreciate your confidence and I hope I never let you down... God Bless.
The BLM and all other federal agencies are the terrorists and the states should treat them as such. The sheriffs and state troopers have the authority to arrest these terrorists and charge them accordingly. Lock them up without a trial or counsel as written in the Patriot act. These goons are the real terrorists. Lets see how much brass our local law officers have. They took the same oath of office as I did when I entered the Army during Viet Nam. I intend to keep my oath. How about you , law officers?
This group is declaring every pond, stream, rain run off as "wet land"... all governed by gov't. One farmer was told as he returned from a second job by some woman crawling on his fence that surrounded his barn that she was counting his livestock. He was only allowed so many...?????He raised a few sows and when they had litters he sold them to locals. The Govt worker told him that was not possible... they had to be destroyed because the "babies" were over his limit. We have a Gov't out of control. They employ brain dead goons. They get their jollies throwing their weight around. During the depression, my parents and their families got jobs on the WPA crews. Kick backs from their pay to the bosses. At elections the WPA goon squads would stand at the door and mark off names. If anyone besides the Dem got votes these goons would find out who "illegally " voted. The "perpetrator " would be fired from his WPA job as would all of the guy's family. WW2 came along and the men went to war... jobs were needed to be filled and the Dems lost their hold on the people.
sr williams, the unions and the democrat party have always been the enemies of freedom and have no place in a Constitutional Republic! THEY are the true enemies of America, and it is they who must be purged from this land by any means necessary! Not in an all-out Civil War, because that is what the fed is counting on; they are all nothing but a pack of ravenous wolves, circling and waiting for their prey (the American people) to make the first move in that direction so that they can pounce and tear us to pieces; they stand armed and ready! There is always a way, tho....all we need is a sound, well thought out strategy and a united focus! Most importantly, patriotic Americans need to realize how we have allowed this situation to become as totally evil as it is! How can we fix all this without at least doing that?