posted on Mar, 12 2012 @ 01:02 PM
I am very fortunate to have 10 acres of land in "rural" (rural meaning UPS and FedEx can't find my house) Oklahoma. Until recently (due to
predators) I had a small flock of chickens and some muscovy ducks. At one time I had about two dozen laying hens which produced more eggs than my
husband and I could eat, so I sold (or gave away) surplus eggs for a dollar or two a dozen. My chickens were absolutely free range. We did feed them a
little, but mostly they foraged. Their egg yolks were so yellow they were almost orange and tasted nothing like the "sweat shop" eggs (so named by
the son of one of my regular "customers") you get at the grocery store.
We also grew tomatoes, cucumbers, blackberries, melons, and a few other things in our large garden, and sometimes gave away produce if we got too
Last year while signing up for a homestead exemption at the local county seat, the lovely metropolis of Pawnee, OK, I asked the clerk about getting a
farm tax exemption. For those of you who don't know, farm tax allows you to not pay sales tax on items you buy for the consumption of animals that
are or produce consumables. People abuse it - they get their dog food and horse feed tax-free and seldom is it questioned, but we intended to just use
it on the chicken feed. So, back to the clerk - a government employee - who looked me right in the eye and told me that I really didn't want the farm
tax exemption because it's "not worth it."
"What do you mean?" I asked, puzzled.
She went on to explain that getting the farm tax would open me up to surprise inspection visits of my "farm" to ensure that I'm complying with all
sorts of regulations and requirements, including how I feed my chickens, how they're housed, how often eggs are collected and whether they are
properly stored, if I use adequate pest control on my vegetables, and so on and so forth...
I decided not to get the farm tax.
So anyway, let's look at the bigger picture. James Stewart's story about abuse and torture may or may not be as full of manure as your average cow
pasture but ... worst case scenario .. what did he do? He tried to avoid licensing, fees, regulations, and inspections of his dairy. Now, it might be
that his cows weren't healthy or there was something wrong with the milk, but no one has come forward to complain or say they're sick, so I kind of
doubt that. Probably he was trying to avoid the costs and invasions of privacy that come with all that crap.
Did he rape or murder anyone? Sell drugs to children? Sell drugs to anyone? Steal from anyone? Engage in robbery or burglary? Beat people up and break
their legs for owing him money? I'm sure y'all are creative and know more about crime than I do, add to the list in your own mind.
We have rapists, murderers, repeat drug offenders, people making a living from selling meth and crack to children, burglars, thieves, carjackers, and
etc. roaming the streets, occasionally getting arrested, and usually getting out of jail (who keeps giving them those dammed get out of jail free
cards, anyway?) within hours on bail.
Even if his story of torture and abuse is a bigger pile of crap than the one you'd find behind an Angus bull on a diet of cheap Mexican food, what
the HELL people? He's an old man who sells milk.
To my way of thinking, the law enforcement system has their priorities totally screwed up if even part of his story is true. Fine him, give him a slap
on the wrist, scold him .. hell, take away his cows and send them to the auction barn .. that'd teach him to be trying to avoid those pesky
inspectors, wouldn't it? But really.. how is anyone even trying to make the scenario of throwing a guy who has some cows and sells milk to people who
want it (and aren't complaining) in jail acceptable?
People die from the effects of prescribed, "safe", pharmaceutical drugs every day.
People periodically die from eating food bought at their local grocery store or Walmart.
People die from food poisoning they got at a restaurant, probably at least every month or so.
People including you are slowly dying, every single day, from the effects of chemical poisons, food additives, preservatives, pesticides, hormones,
animal by-products (which can transmit CJD), trace pathogens, rat droppings, hair and feathers, etc. in your food.
Have you ever heard of any of those people going to jail? Nah. They mess up, but hey, they pay all their fees and stuff and have their proper
licenses. Let's go after the old milkman instead, he doesn't have any lawyers on his payroll.