Tom and Kathy Stocklen fought the National Park Service for over 40 years and retired with their property intact, despite repeated efforts, even threats, by NPS bureaucrats to take their land in Michigan's Sleeping Bear Dunes Natioanl Lakeshore. Curiously, the NPS has recently ended four decades of dredging the Platte River, where the Stocklens placed their canoes, for safe navigation. Clearly, Washington thinks that landowners are public nuisances.
"Farming in Fear" pieces together Martha's story from interviews and documentation, tracking the nearly 10-year ordeal she's gone through just to earn a living in spite of corrupt local ordinances, abusive management of her conservation easement, and personal attacks through the introduction of an amendment to Virginia's Right to Farm Act called the 'Boneta Bill', designed to protect small farmers so that what happened to Martha never happens again.
Press release: Two awards for documentary on Martha Boneta's property rights victory in Virginia.
The new Private Property Rights Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives will target legislation and regulations that interfere with the free and lawful use of private property. Created by Rep. Tom Reed (R, NY), the caucus hopes to build a broad-based coalition that will restore Constitutional rights and enable property owners to provide for themselves and their families.
Did the PEC fabricate claims that Stonewall Jackson slept in an oak grove on Liberty Farm?
Sign the petition. Stand up for property rights for Virginians and everyone!
It seems incredible, but a single missing word could turn a water law into a government land grab so horrendous even a U.S. Supreme Court justice warned it would “put the property rights of every American entirely at the mercy of Environmental Protection Agency employees.”
Thursday was a good day for Liberty in Richmond -- both the farm and the ideal.
Thursday, November 6, 2014 -- 9:00 AM Bell tower rally -- 9:30 AM Legislative hearing
The Bundy ranch standoff illustrates the tension between land rights and an ever more expansive federal bureaucracy. Could ranchers find the law on their side?
Thanks to a grassroots outcry against injustice, Virginia lawmakers passed a new law, signed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe, that protects family farmers from encroachment by local governments. Martha Boneta had been barred by her county government from selling produce, fined for hosting a birthday party, and threatened with the loss of her entire farm. Environmental groups and county governments provided the major opposition to the bill.
Isle of Wight County (Virginia) officials decided to play rough with a local farmer whose "crime" was kindness to a disabled friend who wanted to go hunting. County goons swarmed in and declared the presence of his friend's RV made his farm an unauthorized "campground.' Landowner Joseph Ferguson then called the Rutherford Institute for help. The case is pending.
In yet another example of a busy-body local government harassing a law-abiding citizen, officials in Isle of Wight County, Virginia are trying to prohibit a farmer from allowing a disabled friend to stay overnight on his property in an RV.
So a few cities in Colorado and far-left Oberlin, Ohio, have passed fracking bans -- but do they dare pass bans on the sale and use of gasoline made from fracked oil, or of natural gas recovered via this controversial process? Thank goodness existing law protects citizens of single towns from being hoodwinked by activists into at least some very bad policy decisions. Yeah, we once got people to sign a petition banning dihydrogen monoxide as a dangerous substance!
Can strengthening private property rights help protect our streams, rivers and endangered species? Well if the Upper Colorado River Basin is any example, the answer is “yes.”