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Published: Saturday, April 19 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

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red state pride
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Mr Bundy was clearly in violation of the law. However, I know one thing- I'm really uncomfortable with the BLM having their own little paramilitary force. I'm really not cool with any Federal agency having their own little paramilitary force to include the DOE, NOAA etc. Are they all allowed to be Judge , Jury, and Executioner now?
It's scary to me that the American left is so comfortable pronouncing ongoing debates "settled" and apparently quite comfortable with militarized Federal agencies.
The American left doesn't want farmers to have access to water, ranchers to have access to land, refineries to have access to oil. Do they really think you flip a switch and magically have light and that all that food in grocery stores just magically appears on the shelves? There's a refusal to grow up and accept reality and it's worrisome.

factsplease
SLO, CA

No doubt there are many cattle ranchers in the U.S. who would like a free place to graze their cattle!

Re:Schnee
This land dispute has nothing to do with a solar project. No solar project was planned for this land.

wrz
Phoenix, AZ

@JoeBlow:
"The Nevada grazing case is very troubling. Is this how we are going to start resisting laws that we think are unjust?"

Barack Hussein Obama sets the example by totally ignoring immigration laws. According to US law, aiding and abetting illegal immigrants is a felony. Perhaps the US Attorney General should work on that situation before going after Bundy.

@Mike Richards:
The Constitution clearly states that the Federal Government cannot "own" land except for the District of Columbia: ". . . over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) . . . "

Good point, except the federal government can also purchase other lands for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, yards-docks, and other needful buildings... with the consent of the state legislature in which the same shall be. (Article 1.8)

Seems like the Louisiana Purchase, Alaska, as well as lands purchased from Mexico should be owned by the various states and not the federal government.

Alfred
Phoenix, AZ

@Stalwart Sentinel:
"The irony in these two comparisons is that if the land is not controlled by the Federal gov't as Bundy claims then illegals should actually be able to live on that land."

First, Bundy is claiming the land is State land, not Federal land.

Second, illegals are to be stopped at the border. They should never be allowed to get into any state. Instead, seems like Obama is letting them flood into any state they wish and stay for as long as they wish... with little of no adverse consequences.

When that land was purchased from Mexico at the conclusion of the Mexican-American War, it should have been turned over to the state(s). Instead, the Federal government owns 81.1 percent of Arizona.

prelax
Murray, UT

If all the "right wingers" were there, you would of counted them in the millions. As with illegal immigration, most people, Democrat and Republican, realize that illegal immigration and not paying grazing fees are both against the law.

Paying grazing fees is much like getting a speeding ticket, where illegally coming here and working commits felonies.

Shaun
Sandy, UT

@Mike Richards. The government did not steal the Bundy's land. Bundy doesn't even argue the fact that he doesn't hold title to the land. He just hates the federal government.

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

"First, Bundy is claiming the land is State land, not Federal land."

Unless Bundy is a judge, what he "claims" really does not matter. This has been to court multiple times. Various judges have ruled against Bundy.

"I'll confess, the only thing I enjoyed about the outcome of the situation is the embarrassment for BO."

The only reason this standoff ended the way it did, is because one side, the side of the government, used good judgement and reasoning to keep a very volatile situation from getting out of hand.

"Barack Hussein Obama sets the example by totally ignoring immigration laws"

The immigration laws have been ignored long before Obama. He hardly "set the example".
I think the speed limit should be 90. Are you suggesting that I can take an armed stance against someone attempting to enforce the speed limit law because immigration law enforcement is lax?

Do you realize how ludicrous that is?

Has this country become so partisan that people who take up arms against any government authority are celebrated?

Shame on those of you who feel that this is the right way to go about it.

You scare me far more than any government.

wrz
Phoenix, AZ

@JoeBlow:
"Unless Bundy is a judge, what he 'claims' really does not matter."

I believe the Federal government shouldn't own any land save it be for the seat of the government; forts; magazines; arsenals; yards-docks; and other useful buildings, as per the Constitution. If the Federal government buys huge tracts of land such as Alaska, the land should be ceded over to the state formed by the purchase.

"The only reason this standoff ended the way it did, is because one side, the side of the government, used good judgement and reasoning to keep a very volatile situation from getting out of hand."

The BLM likely got a phone call from Obama who didn't want a Waco or Ruby Ridge on his hands just before the mid-terms.

"The immigration laws have been ignored long before Obama."

Seems he didn't wanna risk losing the Hispanic vote.

"Has this country become so partisan that people who take up arms against any government authority are celebrated?"

Have you heard of the American Revolution? I think there were citizens (militia) with arms. I'll let you guess what they were fighting for.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Has the ability to read and understand the Constitution been so diluted that the simple wording of the Constitution has become a mystery to government and those who repeat the drivel of government?

As WRZ pointed out, I left out Forts, Magazines, and buildings, knowing that no Fort, Magazine or Federal building is part of the land that the BLM controls. The Federal Government cannot own land. It cannot "hold land in trust".

Those who cite Article IV as justification that the Federal Government can own land are being deceived by their professors and their politicians. People own land, not government entities. The Louisiana Purchase was illegal. Read about it. Read what the people said. Read what even Thomas Jefferson said about the legality of the government making that purchase. PEOPLE could have purchased that land. PEOPLE could have asked the Federal Government to accept them as a Territory or as a State but the Federal Government had no more authority to buy that land than Obama has making us buy health insurance. It is clearly not allowed by the Constitution - OUR Constitution.

Linus
Bountiful, UT

So many of you have forgotten your history lessons. This country is The United States of America. Up until a territory of the country is made a state, the property within it belongs to the combined states. Once the territory becomes a state, it has all the rights of one of these United States, including control and use of public lands.

The rights of the states have been eroding. The right of the states to elect senators has already been abolished. Next to go will be the right of the states to elect the president of the United States through the Electoral College. If we continue the trend, the Federal Government will control everything. This was never the intention of the founders.

The Federal Government owns and/or controls very little territory within the borders of the original united states. But it owns and/or controls the vast majority of the territory within the borders of states that gained admission later on. It is a travesty and a violation of the principles upon which we are United States.

UtahBlueDevil
Durham, NC

It is so good to read from modern illuminates who understand the intent of the founding far greater then ordinary people like Jefferson, who obviously had differing opinions about the federal governments right to own land. Its too bad they weren't around to explain the unconstitutionality of Jeffersons actions.... and explain to him the folly in his understanding of what the founding fathers intended.

When an argument is raised over and over again, despite the fact that there is nearly 250 years of legal precedent the counters that reasoning... you have to give people credit for being persistent.

Unreconstructed Reb
Chantilly, VA

Jefferson's concerns over the constitutionality of the Louisiana Purchase stem from his worry about the legality of purchasing foreign lands by treaty, in other words whether it was a constitutional action under the powers of the executive branch, *not* whether it was within the power of the federal government to own land. The treaty contradicted his previously articulated views on the authority of the executive. The draft language of the constitutional amendment he considered, the ratification of his treaty in the Senate, and the lack of challenge to the treaty in the federal courts all bear this out.

It would behoove those who insist that opponents have a "diluted" reading of the Constitution to understand the context in which the document was written, the underlying assumptions it makes based on a mix of English/Colonial common law, and the body of commentary and judicial decisions which have issued since it was ratified. Far from diluting an understanding, these sources of wisdom enhance it and demonstrate why the absolutist position of strict constructionism in constitutional interpretation, as advocated by an insignificant minority, is bunk.

Shaun
Sandy, UT

Mike Richards is Utah's recognized expert on Constitutional law. Why? Because he says so.

So do not argue with him.

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

"I believe the Federal government shouldn't own any land save it be for the seat of the government"

And one can make a valid case for that argument. We have avenues in this country to challenge laws.
What we don't have is the right to disregard laws with which we disagree and even less right to defend those decisions with firearms.

"The BLM likely got a phone call from Obama..."

Possibly. And if that happened, one should commend Obama for making a mature, prudent decision to deescalate a volatile situation.

"Seems he didn't wanna risk losing the Hispanic vote."

Perhaps so. Just like many of his predecessors, including both Bushs.

Look. Either we believe in our legal system or we don't. Either we work withing the legal framework, or we take matters into our own hands.

The question in this case is not whether we like or agree with the law.

But whether it is reasonable to take up armed resistance.

This is a very clear cut case. Those who advocate armed conflict in situations like this are a huge threat to this nation.

And they are far from being patriotic.

wrz
Phoenix, AZ

@JoeBlow:
"What we don't have is the right to disregard laws with which we disagree..."

I would lay a bet that you violate traffic speed limit laws likely every day every day, with your weapon called a 'vehicle.'

"...and even less right to defend those decisions with firearms."

You've heard of the Minute Men, I'll bet. They had firearms and even used them.

"...one should commend Obama for making a mature, prudent decision to deescalate a volatile situation."

Yeah, he didn't want another Waco or Ruby Ridge on his watch.

"Look. Either we believe in our legal system or we don't. Either we work withing the legal framework, or we take matters into our own hands. The question in this case is not whether we like or agree with the law. But whether it is reasonable to take up armed resistance."

That coulda been a good speech for George Washington, head of the Continental Army back in the day.

"This is a very clear cut case. Those who advocate armed conflict in situations like this are a huge threat to this nation."

I'll bet that's about what King George said.

UtahBlueDevil
Durham, NC

Unreconstructed Reb….. two issues here. One, section 18 refers to two things. 1) the establishment of a national capital, and the carving out of that land from the current host states. The second part talks about the federal government acquiring land for the described purposes - and authorization of such by the current existing host states. Key word, existing..

That is all that is written there. It does not prescribe what shall happen when land is acquired but the federal government that does not belong to an existing state. This covers just about every bit of the western expansion. No state owned that land, and therefor the federal government was not subject to section 18.

But that isn't the point here. We know Jefferson modified his position to support what he felt was good and necessary to secure the success of the country. That is an established fact. What is more compelling here is what the federal government by precedent did with the land once it was owned by the federal government. The legitimacy of the purchase is not in question. What the constitution does not cover is land first held by the federal government, and then becomes a state.

Unreconstructed Reb
Chantilly, VA

UtahBlueDevil,

I don't think we're in disagreement. I'm refuting the earlier assertion that concerns over the Purchase stemmed from the federal government's inability to own land outside of that specifically designated in the Constitution. That view would be incorrect - it wasn't the federal ownership of the land, but how it was acquired that concerned Jefferson because the Constitution gives no explicit authority to the executive to purchase lands outside the footprint of the original colonies.

And you're quite right, it established precedent which to my knowledge has never been challenged. And it's demonstrative of the fact that strict constructionists like Jefferson have to bend to reality, which is one reason why I view the ideological position itself as fundamentally flawed.

Fitness Freak
Salt Lake City, UT

I'm not sure what the feds will do about the Bundy situation, but I'm sure that whatever they do, they will "botch it", just like they always do.

BTW - as soon as I see some sort of COMPREHENSIVE illegal immigration enforcment - I'll withdraw my wholehearted support of Bundy.

I'm NOT holding my breath.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I can't speak for everybody on the "right".... but I'm for enforcing all our laws. Even the laws that apply to the Bundy situation. But what laws are those. Do you understand the legal ins and outs of the Bundy situation in detail?

My understanding is that this case has become very complex and there are conflicting State and Federal agencies, and state and federal responses, and state and federal laws involved. State land under Federal BLM administration, grazing leases, etc, can get very complex. You can get one story from the State and another from the Feds.

The Bundy family has owned it's ranch since 1870. The question is the legalities of the grazing rights for the past 20 years, but if he was wrong about whether to follow State statutes or Federal statutes... what specific laws were broken?... and what's the appropriate penalty?

Feds take the ranch and put him and his family on welfare??

Who benefits from doing that... Not Bundy... not the State... not the Feds... just the angry environmentalists who love to see ranchers destroyed...

one vote
Salt Lake City, UT

Does a person get to use threats of violence to get property seized by court order? "If you lose two appeals, you can obstruct justice to reverse the courts?

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