Last week I posted about a New York newspaper which decided to print the names and addresses of all firearm permit holders in two counties. Despite the fact that gun permit holders are more law abiding than the general population, and despite the fact that mostly illegal guns are used in crimes, the newspaper thought this was an appropriate step to take. In reality what their actions did was identify perfect crime target areas–anywhere without permit holders. The newspaper also put abused women hiding from stalkers and exes at risk; these women need firearms to protect themselves more than most.
A blogger turned the tables on the newspaper and published the names, photos, and addresses of the newspaper leadership, executives, and editors. I left off that article by saying “I would guess that a few of those exposed employees may feel targeted enough to want to protect themselves; maybe a few are out buying guns right now.” Well I was half right. The newspaper has since hired armed guards at its facilities, according to this article, in order to protect the editor, and other targeted employees. So I guess what they are saying is that guns are useful, just not in the hands of everyday people like us. This fits right into the point of the whole article Elite Hypocrisy on Guns; they all realize the benefit guns can provide in certain situations, they just want to limit our ability to protect ourselves, while themselves enjoying the protection guns offer.
I also recently posted about the EPA’s attempts to regulate storm water runoff.
The EPA originally issued a warning that Lois Alt could face fines of up to $37,500 per day if she did not do something about the stray feathers, dust, and chicken manure which could be carried by rainwater two footballs fields away and emptied into a stream. The EPA claimed the Clean Water Act gave them the authority to define animal waste (most of which was confined correctly in the barn) carried by rain as a pollution source point, and therefore regulate it. This is part of the larger trend of the EPA to define everything as a water way in order to claim the authority to regulate it. In the past the EPA has defined drainage ditches as navigable water ways in order to regulate private property.
On Thursday a federal court ruled that storm-water runoff is not a pollutant, and that the EPA has no authority to regulate it as such. The court ruled that the EPA was effectively treating water as a pollutant, and therefore misdirecting resources which could be used to actually improve the environment in question. The EPA’s argument was that there was an overabundance of water, which was harming the streams in a particular area, and therefore that water could be considered a pollutant. This is a win for property rights, and anyone just trying to make a living on a farm, or grow food for their family. The EPA is constantly trying to broaden its authority by redefining laws, rules, regulations, and words.
According to the Virginia attorney general’s office, state taxpayers will save more than $300 million in unnecessary costs because of the ruling.
“EPA’s thinking here was that if Congress didn’t explicitly prohibit the agency from doing something, that meant it could, in fact, do it,” Cuccinelli said. “Logic like that would lead the EPA to conclude that if Congress didn’t prohibit it from invading Mexico, it had the authority to invade Mexico. This incredibly flawed thinking would have allowed the agency to dramatically expand its power at its own unlimited discretion. Today, the court said otherwise.”
I couldn’t agree more. This is the same logic used by congress to regulate everything under the commerce clause. If the founding fathers who wrote the constitution wanted to give congress–and by extension the EPA–the authority to do whatever they wanted, they would have said that. But congress and the EPA like to pretend that unless the constitution specifically prohibited them from doing something, they can do it. Although they conveniently ignore the tenth amendment which states “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” The EPA is therefore an unconstitutional agency, and any environmental regulation should happen on the state level, if at all.