Quantcast
Opinion

In our opinion: Western land standoff aside, there is room for compromise with BLM

Comments

Return To Article
  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    April 24, 2014 7:27 p.m.

    He even lost Hannity. Any one supporting this guy should evaluate his position and the last one hundred and fifty years.

  • anotherview SLO, CA
    April 24, 2014 2:44 p.m.

    Re:nonceleb
    "How can the DN suggest compromise when one side is a free-loading, welfare cowboy, who flaunts the law, disregards court orders, and is willing to use armed force"

    and who turns out to hold racist views?

    No surprises here.

  • nonceleb Salt Lake City, UT
    April 24, 2014 1:41 p.m.

    Compromise? How is that possible when Bundy refuses to budge. The only compromise he will accept is to be left alone to herd his cattle on federal land for free and with disregard for any regulations on grazing. If the courts or law enforcement try to get him to obey the law or pay his backlog of fees, he has his armed family and militias to stop them. They even said they would use women as human shields. The worst terrorists do that. How can the DN suggest compromise when one side is a free-loading, welfare cowboy, who flaunts the law, disregards court orders, and is willing to use armed force.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    April 24, 2014 7:34 a.m.

    J Thompson.... your section you are quoting is taken way out of context. This was a provision setting aside rules for the federal government to acquire land from the states -"may, by Cession of particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress....and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State,"

    Cession means that the states currently have control or jurisdiction of the land, and are granting or selling such such lands to the federal government. In the case of western expansion, states did not exist on these lands. There was no recognized state of Utah or Nevada. There was no state to grant or sell this land to the federal government.

    There is no clause here that says the federal government can't own land. This is a contract on how the federal government acquires lands from states. There is not a single word in there about how lands can or should be acquired from other countries.... or the disposition of those lands.

  • TimeHasCome King, WA
    April 23, 2014 9:53 p.m.

    I guess the Founding Fathers were Domestic Terrorists . As far as patience wasn't 20 years enough for Clive Bundy? It was the BLM that showed up heavily armed to enforce a tax bill . The editorial board needs to get out more and see the state preferably on horseback before they cast any more digital stones.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    April 23, 2014 6:54 p.m.

    Mike Richards -

    No, the Federal government has not been "prohibited from "owning" more than a parcel of land 10 miles square."

    "Conservatives" really come up with some humdingers.

    The "ten miles square" in the US Constitution refers to the nation's Capitol in DC.

    If what you say were true, than America would have been prohibited by the Constitution from acquiring new territory, including the Louisiana Purchase.

    I know there are a whole lot of false claims circulating in Right Wing America, but if you just give some of these outrageous tall tales a little thought, I think you could see how ridiculous they really are.

  • SG in SLC Salt Lake City, UT
    April 23, 2014 5:27 p.m.

    Mike (and J Thompson),

    Yes, I am a citizen of the United States, and it is my Constitution AND the governments, since the U.S. government is also comprised of U.S. citizens, rather than foreign nationals or extraterrestrials (in the "us versus them" characterization of government, the "them" of government is really just a subset of "us" citizens). All of "us" have skin in the game, whether as an elected/appointed official, or a government staffer, or a private citizen.

    To the topic at hand, Article I, Section 8, Clause 17 gives Congress exclusive legislative authority over the Capitol District (District of Columbia), limits its maximum size, and gives Congress like authority over land purchased in proximity to D.C. for the purpose of establishing defensive military installations for the District. What it DOES NOT DO is prohibit the federal government from owning any other land, particularly in light of Article IV, Section 3, Clause 2. To argue that the federal government is constitutionally prohibited from owning land is a bizarrely narrow and unorthodox interpretation of the Constitution, and is prime evidence of why private interpretation of the Constitution, versus Judicial Review, is problematic.

    ***

    @Unreconstructed Reb

    Well said.

  • Res Novae Ashburn, VA
    April 23, 2014 5:18 p.m.

    Claiming to embody the true meaning of the Constitution in defiance of legal authority and at the point of a gun doesn't automatically confer legitimacy on your cause any more that it did on the Whiskey Rebellion, Nat Turner, John Brown, the Confederacy, the coal miners at the Battle of Blair Mountain, the Black Panthers, the 90s militia movements, or any number of other extremists of all political stripes who are now in the dustbin of history.

  • Unreconstructed Reb Chantilly, VA
    April 23, 2014 4:40 p.m.

    "You can read. You KNOW that the government has been prohibited from "owning" more than a parcel of land 10 miles square, but YOU don't care. YOU want the King to tell you what liberties and what freedoms you have."

    In my law practice, I find that when my interpretation of a law or statute conflicts with the way it's been interpreted by courts and legal scholars for years, it's because I haven't done enough research to understand it. I certainly don't jump to the conclusion that anyone who disagrees with me is a closet monarchist trying to deprive me of my liberty.

    "Unlike Washington, Adams, Franklin and the other's who pledged their all, you are satisfied with the crumbs from the table of the "king"."

    Please not another lecture on patriotic sacrifice. I'm still finding Iraqi sand in my boots.

    "Cliven Bundy and his supporters are doing what we all should be doing."

    Support to insurrectionist lawbreakers is hardly in keeping with what conservatives purport to believe. Citizens cannot be selective about the judicial decisions we should obey or not obey. The alternative is anarchy.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    April 23, 2014 4:20 p.m.

    There are two things that citizens must remember when dealing with the government on this issue. The first thing is: "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."

    We are in charge.

    The second thing is: Article 1, Section 8: "To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings;"

    The government cannot own land, except the District of Columbia, Forts, Magazines, arsenals, dock-Yards and other needful buildings.

    Nevada is not owned by the Federal Government.

  • Fitness Freak Salt Lake City, UT
    April 23, 2014 3:46 p.m.

    Bullying and tyranny can only be successful if citizens allow it.

    Cliven Bundy and his supporters are doing what we all should be doing. Instead, we make excuses and try to rationalize the explosive growth of federal alphabet soup agencies and their taking up arms against American citizens.

    The feds, up until now have been largely successful with their bullying. Obviously, the BLM thought they could continue their nonsense unabated. The BLM, undoubtedly is trying to figure out how to save face, while at the same time making sure that NONE of this rubs off on Harry Reid. They have a difficult task ahead of them!

    This is about WAY more than solar panels!

    WHY NOT just disarm all the federal agencies, and if they want force to be shown, go to the county sheriff, or even the state police to make their case and have THEM handle the police work?

    What's wrong with that?
    Besides the fact that the feds will no longer be able to play "tough guy" without restrictions.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    April 23, 2014 3:37 p.m.

    @2 bits
    "There's nothing illegal about protesting, or possessing weapons. "

    Here's the problem... are we supposed to believe they would not use those weapons if the federal officials continued as they were? Are the BLM employees just supposed to trust that or should they interpret it as threatening gov't officials (surely there's a line somewhere that must exist even if it's rather unclear what constitutes crossing it)?

    @Mountanman
    "Some people would rather be subjects than citizens."

    Not exactly, here's the thing...

    "You see, in America the people tell the government what it can and can not do, not the other way around. "

    ...what is the difference between some American people telling gov't to go after tax evaders, and some American people telling gov't to go after welfare fraud?

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    April 23, 2014 3:32 p.m.

    Mike… show me the language that says the government can not own land…. show us, please! Enough of this silliness. Either site precedent, or be willing to learn. But minus something other than your opinion or interpretation… it holds no weight…. what so ever. 240 years of law says your wrong… with plenty of cases in the past to test the legality. Find us one where any court has said the Federal Government does not have the right to own land…. please! If you have something more than your opinion… please share it… sensible people will learn from you then.

    Back to the real topic…. my experience managing a development that was located on EPA designated wetlands… I like the EPA model where they contract with local governments to administer the lands locally. The BLM could do the same… subcontract to the states to manage the land. Locals know the land, understand the history and issues of the land, and can best arbitrate just solutions. The EPA model would work very well.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    April 23, 2014 3:02 p.m.

    SG in SLC,

    Are YOU a citizen of the United States of America? Whose Constitution is it, yours or the governments. Whose blood is spilled when we are commanded to report for duty? Whose money is taken when the government needs revenue?

    Wake up! You can read. You KNOW that the government has been prohibited from "owning" more than a parcel of land 10 miles square, but YOU don't care. YOU want the King to tell you what liberties and what freedoms you have. We are free citizens of the United States of America. We have no King. We are the keepers of the Constitution. As long as you allow the government to define what your liberties and freedoms are, you will lose those liberties and freedoms.

    You believe the balony that politicians have fed you. Unlike Washington, Adams, Franklin and the other's who pledged their all, you are satisfied with the crumbs from the table of the "king". Shame on you.

  • SG in SLC Salt Lake City, UT
    April 23, 2014 2:27 p.m.

    @Mike Richards

    Are you a SCOTUS Justice? A federal appellate or district court judge? A Utah Supreme Court Justice? A Utah appellate or district court judge? Or even a Utah justice court judge? If so, then you can rule authoritatively on the constitutionality of an action (assuming it is brought before you in a case in your jurisdiction); if not, then your opinion and interpretation regarding constitutionality is just that -- a personal opinion bearing no authoritative weight, and no more valid than any other "lay person's" opinion regarding constitutionality, based on their own interpretation. For anyone who is not an appointed judge to assume that their opinion on all things constitutional is the final word on the matter is the height of conceit and hubris.

    If you can cite case law (preferably SCOTUS case law; while other case law is authoritative, it is also subject to appeal) that requires the federal government to "divest itself of all 'public lands'" under any part of the U.S. Constitution, then I would gladly concede the point, as I'm sure would the others here who are challenging your claim. Until then, it's just a personal opinion.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    April 23, 2014 1:08 p.m.

    Bundyfest sounds like a lot of fun. Keep us posted so we can be there.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    April 23, 2014 12:47 p.m.

    Where's the right's towards occupy Wall Street and illegal aliens?

    I thought the law was the law?

    I guess the law only applies sometimes.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Chihuahua, 00
    April 23, 2014 12:21 p.m.

    FT

    "What should happen is Clive Bundy and the anarchist surrounding him should be gathered up and thrown in jail. If they don't go peacefully then take them by force."

    Move to North Korea. Nobody except for the Government has Guns and everybody below them is treated equal. It's inhumane but at least it's equal and your all about equality. You wouldn't have to worry about militias or anybody speaking out against your Government Gods.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Chihuahua, 00
    April 23, 2014 12:11 p.m.

    They don't want compromise. Harry Reid is trying to provoke a civil war and Cliven Bundy will only negotiate with the County Sheriff.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    April 23, 2014 12:06 p.m.

    I agree, but your remarks are a might tepid. But this will liven things up. The organizers of Burning Man (who do pay a user fee to the BLM) have declared "Bundyfest" to be held right after Burning Man right across the road from Mr. Bundy's ranch. Since Bundy has declared himself to be outside of U.S. jurisdiction, Bundyfest will be an exercise in pure anarchy. Anything goes, and I do mean anything. It should be quite an event. I will await your editorial about that along about September.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    April 23, 2014 10:58 a.m.

    “ . . . There is room for compromise with BLM . . .”

    WRONG.

    The Federal Governement DOES NOT compromise with terrorists, either foreign or domestic.

    Get used to it.

    Federal Lands belong to “We the People of the United States . . . ”

    Federal Lands do NOT belong to the states or exclusively to local yokels with attitude problems . . . even if they do strut around carrying guns while shouting about how much they hate the government.

    The Federal Governement DOES NOT compromise with terrorists, either foreign or domestic.

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    April 23, 2014 10:49 a.m.

    @ 2 bits
    Once again nice straw man arguments. If you can't win an argument do you always recreate the facts? Where did the occupy Wall Street protesters come into the equation here? Truthfully, I have no idea if they were breaking the law or not. If they were they're no different than Clive Bundy and I would support our law enforcement in doing what was needed to enforce the law.
    As far as the armed protestors surrounding Bundy many of them have threatned to use force if law enforcement comes to arrest him. I'm not an attorney but it would seem to me that threatning the life of a law enforcement officer from doing his sworn duty is breaking the law. Protesting is fine, threats and indimation of our public law enforcement is not.

  • Res Novae Ashburn, VA
    April 23, 2014 10:49 a.m.

    "The government is forbidden to own land..."

    And yet it does and has for two centuries, ample time to mount a concerted legal challenge. As the legal maxim goes, res ipsa loquitur: the thing speaks for itself.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 23, 2014 10:34 a.m.

    FT,
    There's nothing illegal about protesting, or possessing weapons. We still believe in freedom of expression... don't we? Or can you now be carted off by force and jailed for protesting this government action?

    Bundy may have broken a law... but what law did the people who showed up to protest break???

    ===

    You call them "Anarchists", I call them "People".

    People who have just as much right to protest as the Occupy Wallstreet people...

    ===

    Question:
    Were you saying "If they don't go peacefully then take them by force"... when the occupy wallstreet people were told they were breaking the law by setting up their camps on private property, vandalizing stores, etc?

    How about the anti-war protesters? Just call the SS and cart them off to jail??

    Or is it just when the protesters don't agree with you (or your party) that they need to be carted off to jail (for protesting)?

    The BLM protesters broke no US Laws that I'm aware of. The occupy people did though... and you tolerated their protests...

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    April 23, 2014 10:31 a.m.

    @ 2 bits
    Nice straw man argument about the SS and the Gestapo. I happen to believe in the rule of law and support our law enforcement. Clive Bundy has been found guilty by the courts and refuses to comply to the rule of law. Anyone protecting him from justice is obstructing the law.
    Go ahead and question the goverment and get your day in court but no man is above the rule of law. Clive Bundy and the ararchist surrounding him think they are and there is no place in a civilized, democratic society like ours.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    April 23, 2014 10:19 a.m.

    FT. You would love life in Cuba, Iran, N.Korea, Hitler's Germany or Russia because that is what they do there but not in America. You see, in America the people tell the government what it can and can not do, not the other way around. In America we have freedom to stand up to government abuses. Or at least we used to but some people just don't get it! Some people would rather be subjects than citizens.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 23, 2014 10:09 a.m.

    @FT,
    Re: "If they don't go peacefully then take them by force...

    My... you sound so Gestapo-like today... You're mind-set fits perfectly when you have the SS or the Gestapo to round people up and throw them in jail for daring to question the government.

    What is this left in this country becoming???

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    April 23, 2014 10:00 a.m.

    @ One Old Man
    "So what happens when legal remedies through the courts have been exhausted"?
    What should happen is Clive Bundy and the anarchist surrounding him should be gathered up and thrown in jail. If they don't go peacefully then take them by force.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    April 23, 2014 9:33 a.m.

    So what happens when legal remedies through the courts have been exhausted?

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    April 23, 2014 9:25 a.m.

    Read the Constitution. IT is the Supreme Law of the Land. Google is NOT the Supreme Law of the Land.

    When people look for an excuse to excuse government lawlessness, they will surely find like-minded "peers" who prefer to get their "law" from the Internet.

    Either we have a Constitution or we do not. I contend that we have a Constitution and that no amount of lawlessness by the government or by government supporters overrides the Constitution.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 23, 2014 9:12 a.m.

    Mike Richards,
    Re: "The government is forbidden to own land"...

    As usual... there are different viewpoints.

    There are 3 different interpretations of the "Property Clause" of the Constitution (ARTICLE IV, SECTION 3, CLAUSE 2)

    google "Property clause"...

    The primary constitutional authority for the management and control of this vast real-estate empire is the Property Clause. The exact scope of this clause has long been a matter of debate. Broadly speaking, three different theories have been advanced.

    The narrowest conception, which can be called the proprietary theory, maintains that the Property Clause simply allows Congress to act as an ordinary owner of land.

    The broadest conception, which can be called the police-power theory, regards the clause as conferring not only the powers of ownership but also general sovereign authority to regulate private conduct that occurs on federal land or that affects federal land.

    there is also an intermediate conception of the Property Clause, which can be labeled the protective theory.

    It is not certain which of these three theories corresponds with the original understanding of the Framers...

    It's still being debated by the various Courts and Constitutional Scholars.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    April 23, 2014 8:42 a.m.

    The government is forbidden to own land, except for a 10 mile square parcel of land which is the District of Columbia and minor pieces of land for Forts, Magazines, and Federal Buildings. That is what the Supreme Law of the Land tells us. Obviously, the federal government thinks that it is above the law. So, if both sides are lawless, which side should be rewarded?

    The federal government needs to divest itself of all "public lands".

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 23, 2014 8:25 a.m.

    I think the BLM could do a better job of communicating with the local natives when making decisions. Especially decisions that affect the life and livelyhood of the local natives.

    I think the fact that they are giving it some time to de-escalate is a good development.

    I think both sides have made some mistakes. To pretend that the Federal Government has never made a mistake, or that they couldn't make a mistake now... is viewing reality through very strict blinders that only allow you to see what you WANT to see. Likewise assuming ranchers are always right... is a narrow view of reality.

    They need to work together and try to find compromise and make sure the position of BOTH sides is explained and understood (not just crammed down other side's throat because you aren't REQUIRED to discuss or explain). They seem to have learned from our friends in Congress... that "compromise" is a bad word, and shows weakness, and should be avoided at all cost. Only confrontation, dramatically created standoffs, ideological purity, and insisting YOU get everything YOU want... is needed.

    Yes... BOTH sides do this from time to time. Not just one side.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    April 23, 2014 8:14 a.m.

    Fine, place a lien on Bundy's property, the government gets its money and the problem solved! There was no need to send in 200 armed storm troopers, threaten people, kill cattle and act like thugs and waste over a million dollars of taxpayer money trying to show who's boss! That's the point!

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    April 23, 2014 7:51 a.m.

    This is a good, sensible editorial, but one gets the sense that a lot of the "sagebrush rebels" want the land deeded to *them*, not to the state or any county or any other form of government, which are all viewed as simply differing levels of evil, all to be opposed.

    It's increasingly apparent the vigilantes / patriots / welfare ranchers who are now railing against Obama will immediately turn their sights to the Utah Legislature if/when the United States is dumb enough to cede ownership of federal lands to the states.

    Good luck getting that genie back in the bottle, conservatives.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    April 23, 2014 7:35 a.m.

    Are you kidding me? Your effort to rationalize law breaking so you can have a foot in both worlds is stunningly ridiculous. Your underlying premise is wrong, including the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. Yes, the rebels of the West were upset that land was set aside for purposes that would exclude its exploitation for their personal gain, but the land is owned by the people (as represented by the Federal government) and we had every right to designate it as a National Monument. There is nothing in limbo. Bundy is a lawbreaker and has been for decades, unlike most of the other ranchers who obey the law. As I talk to BLM folks, you assertion is completely false - they are sensitive to local issues. The problem comes when certain local folks can't get what they want, and it's always for their own selfish interests. For most of us, take away the emotional arguments, and we will mostly agree that the federal government is doing the right thing by protecting public lands for our widespread use rather than closing them off so a few can profit.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    April 23, 2014 7:32 a.m.

    One vote. You need to educate yourself about Ruby Ridge and Waco where it was government thugs who were the ones riding around in trucks and machine guns hoping for a fight, just like they almost did in Nevada. Our forefathers stood up to abusive government thugs and we call them patriots, which they were. American needs more patriots instead of lemmings.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    April 23, 2014 7:29 a.m.

    There's nothing worse than preppers that have a million bullets and 10 years of food in the basement and nothing to do with it.

    So the Nevada rancher says he wants a million dollars of free grass from the government. Ok. I'm sure he's ok with everyone else just grazing there free too? I say everybody should bring their livestock to his place and see what he says.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    April 23, 2014 12:15 a.m.

    The extreme right in Utah is using this as a takeover issue. The call to moderation and recognition of the law is important. Unless you want the Militia types riding around in pickup trucks with machine guns hoping for a fight.