Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – “You won’t see that on ABC News this week, will you? Another one of these accounts from someone who is actually close to the action about what is actually going on and what is actually at stake here. Now we have this headline here today on the story that there has been a truce of sorts, “Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy: ‘The citizens of America’ got my cattle back.”” Check out today’s transcript for the rest…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: This is a rancher nearby Cliven Bundy who goes by the name of Kena Lytle Gloeckner. She posted this letter to local Nevada media and social media sites. I read it yesterday and went: Hmm, that’s interesting, let’s read this. So to give you another perspective — I will endeavor to, by the close of morning business today, to have the transcript up from the — if you want to read it, and there will be a bullet-point highlight at the top of the page — of the Senate debate over the Louisiana Purchase and the explanation of how territory is created and how it’s treated different from any other land where the federal government has jurisdiction. I think this is just key here. Again, remember, rules and regulations are a lot different than governing. You can only govern what has — Eric, do you think I explained it well enough? Let me add one more minute to this. Is Adrian in with you today?
Mike: So if you and Adrian were living, let’s just say 100 square acres — it wasn’t Nevada at the time, it couldn’t have been, but it was part of what was ceded to the United States by Mexico via treaty.
The different between rules and regulations and governing is that you, because you were just in the territory that was ceded and purchased, would not have the same responsibilities and allegiance to the United States government as a citizen of a state. You would be regarded as a territory and you would be accorded the privileges and immunities of a citizen, but you wouldn’t have to pay the kind of taxes they would. You wouldn’t have to obey the same kind of laws. The Congress could not exercise the enumerated powers in Article I, Section 8 over your land, as I understand it. What they could do, though, under the Rules and Regulations Clause, is they could say: Look, we want to run a mail truck through there. We’re going to set off a part of this over here until you guys decide what you’re going to do. We want to store boxcars here, or whatever the case may be. They would be telling you all along: We want you to incorporate yourself, write your own constitution draw your borders, and then apply for statehood so that we don’t have to do any of these things.
In other words, the Territory Clause is in there as something that happens in between when territory is acquired and then when it becomes a state, which is a far cry different from the Congress saying: Okay, you are a sovereign entity, Adrian and Eric. You’ve got your 100 square acres. You’ve written your own constitution. Now you want to apply for statehood. You’re going to call it Ericistan. Once we admit Ericistan, you are then granting to us those Article I, Section 8 powers to be used over you or against you, and you reserve everything else. But until such time, we can just pass a couple rules and regulations onto you. It’s a vastly different set of circumstances. Since Nevada did incorporate and did become a state, why is there this big hoop-de-doo? Maybe this can explain it. This rancher, Kena Lytle Gloeckner writes:
There have been a lot of people criticizing Clive Bundy because he did not pay his grazing fees for 20 years. The public is also probably wondering why so many other cowboys are supporting Mr. Bundy even though they paid their fees and Clive did not. What you people probably do not realize is that on every rancher’s grazing permit it says the following:
“You are authorized to make grazing use of the lands, under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management and covered by this grazing permit, upon your acceptance of the terms and conditions of this grazing permit and payment of grazing fees when due.”
The “mandatory” terms and conditions go on to list the allotment, the number and kind of livestock to be grazed, when the permit begins and ends, the number of active or suspended AUMs (animal units per month), etc. The terms and conditions also list specific requirements such as where salt or mineral supplements can be located, maximum allowable use of forage levels (40% of annual growth), etc., and include a lot more stringent policies that must be adhered to. Every rancher must sign this “contract” agreeing to abide by the TERMS AND CONDITIONS before he or she can make payment.
In the early 90s, the BLM went on a frenzy and drastically cut almost every rancher’s permit because of this desert tortoise issue, even though all of us ranchers knew that cow and desert tortoise had co-existed for a hundred-plus years. As an example, a family friend had his permit cut by 90%. For those of you who are non-ranchers, that would be equated to getting your paycheck cut 90%. In 1976 there were approximately 52 ranching permittees in this area of Nevada. Presently, there are 3. Most of these people lost their livelihoods because of the actions of the BLM.
Clive Bundy was one of these people who received extremely unfair and unreasonable TERMS AND CONDITIONS. Keep in mind that Mr. Bundy was required to sign this contract before he was allowed to pay. Had Clive signed on the dotted line, he would have, in essence, signed his very livelihood away. And so Mr. Bundy took a stand, not only for himself, but for all of us. He refused to be destroyed by a tyrannical federal entity and to have his American liberties and freedoms taken away.
Also keep in mind that all ranchers financially paid dearly for the forage rights those permits allow – – not rights to the land, but rights to use the forage that grows on that land. Many of these AUMS are water based, meaning that the rancher also has a vested right (state owned, not federal) to the waters that adjoin the lands and allow the livestock to drink. These water rights were also purchased at a great price. If a rancher cannot show beneficial use of the water (he must have the appropriate number of livestock that drinks and uses that water), then he loses that water right. Usually water rights and forage rights go hand in hand.
Contrary to what the BLM is telling you, they NEVER compensate a rancher for the AUMs they take away. Most times, they tell ranchers that their AUMS are “suspended,” but not removed. Unfortunately, my family has thousands of “suspended” AUMs that will probably never be returned. And so, even though these ranchers throughout the course of a hundred years invested thousands (and perhaps millions) of dollars and sacrificed along the way to obtain these rights through purchase from others, at a whim the government can take everything away with the stroke of a pen. This is the very thing that Clive Bundy single-handedly took a stand against. Thank you, Clive, from a rancher who considers you a hero.
Mike: You won’t see that on ABC News this week, will you? Another one of these accounts from someone who is actually close to the action about what is actually going on and what is actually at stake here. Now we have this headline here today on the story that there has been a truce of sorts, “Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy: ‘The citizens of America’ got my cattle back.”
Federal land managers say “escalating tensions” led them to release all 400 or so head of cattle rounded up on public land in southern Nevada from a rancher who has refused to recognize their authority.
The rancher at the center of the dispute said it was “the citizens of America” that brought the standoff to an end.
Bureau of Land Management Chief Neil Kornze announced an abrupt halt to the weeklong roundup just hours before the release.
“Based on information about conditions on the ground and in consultation with law enforcement, we have made a decision to conclude the cattle gather because of our serious concerns about the safety of employees and members of the public,” Kornze said in a statement.
Mike: [mocking] “We’re going to stand down for concern for the safety of our employees.” What does that mean, you mean a bunch of guys that graze cattle for a living are a threat? There is an implied use of violence. [mocking] “Who are they yahoos out here squatting on federal — we’re supreme here. These people are posing a threat. The wonderful people that want to help that silly, that sacred little desert tortoise, they’re dangerous. Some of them have weapons. Yes, we know that some of these yahoos actually pack heat.” Remember on Friday I read to you portions of the court order and the judge’s subjective ruling that Cliven Bundy, by grazing his cattle, that he’s been grazing there for over a hundred years, was a threat to public safety and to the cultural integrity of the desert. Some of you may wonder, as did I, what in the hell is the cultural integrity of a desert? It’s a desert.
End Mike Church Show Transcript