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Thread: Oregon County declares itself UN-free Zone and passes law to ignore US Forest Service regulations

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    Welcome to Grant County, Oregon: A ‘U.N.-free Zone’

    Last month, voters in this small eastern Oregon county of 7,800 residents carefully pondered two important ballot questions. No, they weren’t about increased funding for schools, balancing the budget, or even term limits. One called for banning the United Nations from the county; the other would permit residents to cut down trees on federal land without U.S. Forest Service approval.

    Both measures passed overwhelmingly, with more than 50 percent of the county’s 4,684 registered voters casting their ballots.

    The "Sagebrush Rebellion" has struck again.

    This time it’s in a timber region similar in size to Connecticut, but worlds apart in terms of ideology. Old-timers in Grant County pine for the glory days of logging and ranching on wide-open swaths of land, more than half of which now bears the ubiquitous: Property of U.S. Government. No Trespassing.

    These are a fiercely proud people, born with sawdust in their hair and the Western spirit in their veins. They’ve lived through countless hard winter nights, a dying logging and mill-based economy (which has led to the second highest unemployment rate in the state) and an endless stream of environmentalism attacking their way of life. Don’t mind them, then, if they have a healthy distrust for folks who are "not from around here."

    Proponents of the ballot measure allowing for public harvesting of timber on federal lands argue that U.S. Forest Service restrictions -- a result of environmentalist lobbying -- are strangling the region’s lifeblood. Claiming the measure will provide them greater stewardship of federal forests, they seek to salvage dead, dying and wind-damaged trees on federal lands, which could help prevent forest fires and would offer a much-needed boost to local mills.

    In Oregon, ballot questions don’t have to undergo legal review before being presented to voters. A matter is assumed lawful unless challenged in court. Controversial issues often are.

    As for the ban on the United Nations, according to the Associated Press, a majority of county voters feel the U.N. wants to "take away people’s guns, seize private property, control the education of children and establish one world religion — Pantheism -- and world taxation." Road signs are already being erected declaring Grant County a "U.N.-free Zone."

    The measure was sparked by residents who worry that the U.N. might designate land in Grant County as a "United Nations World Heritage" site or a Biosphere Reserve, which would provide the U.N. a foothold into the county and lead towards greater regulation of remaining private land.

    While that might sound crazy to some in the county, who believe the new law will make them a laughingstock, voters passed the measure 1,326 in favor to 959 against. Herb Brusman, who drafted the measure, told the East Oregonian, "It basically was a statement to be made. . .The less we have contact with (the United Nations) the better."

    Fear of U.N. control is not uncommon for many Westerners who are quick to resist any perceived government intrusion — foreign or domestic — into their independent way of life, which they feel is in danger of extinction.

    Farmers, ranchers and loggers are constantly faced with increased land and water restrictions on behalf of the snail darter, spotted owl or whatever’s next on the Endangered Species list. Westerners are skeptical of government scientists whose findings are later disproved -- with alarming regularity — or shown to have been manipulated.

    Last summer, irrigation water was cut off to 1,400 farmers during a severe drought in the Klamath River Basin near the California-Oregon border to protect endangered salmon and sucker fish. This bankrupted many valley farms, cost the regional economy more than $130 million, and almost led to an armed insurrection; Federal agents had to be called in to stop farmers from forcing open the head gates to the river. In the end, a report from the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) found "no sound scientific basis" for the government's decision to cut off the water. In fact, the report suggests that high river flows in the Klamath Basin might actually be lethal to the salmon.

    In March, separate investigations by the Department of Interior (DOI) and the General Accounting Office (GAO) confirmed that a group of federal and state wildlife workers submitted false evidence of endangered lynx habitat in three national forests, which could have led to further restrictions on federal lands of activities such as snowmobiling, skiing and livestock grazing (read Here a Lynx, There a Lynx).
    It should come as no surprise then when Western citizens, such as those in Grant County, look for ways to fight back. As County Judge Dennis Reynolds explained to the Associated Press, "These people are lashing out in the only way they can."

    There’s no telling where the "Sagebrush Rebellion" might strike next.

    [line]Before anyone asks, here is how this has to do with OCDO (see bolded sections): One of the reasons they voted to create a U.N. -free zone is due to their concern about the UN acting to seize their guns. Furthermore, the article discusses various violations and restrictions of personal property rights by the gov't which while not directed specifically at gun owners or OC, is part of a pattern of behavior that includes the infringement of our 2A rights.

    I'm going to have to think about this one for a while as far as ramifications if this process spread across the nation. What if counties and then states across the nation started passing laws declaring their counties and states UN-free zones? What if other counties and eventually states declared a right (asserted their rights?) under the 10th Amendment to manage the lands in their own states and openly defied and ignored the national forest service and national park service? Perhaps this is how the revolution begins.

    We had Montana threaten to declare their Compact of Statehood void if SCOTUS rules that the 2A is anything besides an individual right. We have had similar bills presented in several other states although I know of nowhere else it passed. We have individual states passing laws to strongly discourage illegal immigrants residing in their states. We have counties passing all matter and sorts of laws and declarations to indicate their displeasure with federal action. Is this how it begins, not with a bang or a boom, but rather with a slow crescendo of displeasure, with the states asserting their rights to self-governance under the 10th Amendment, with states not seceding but rather accusing the federal government of violating the constitution and by doing so violating the 50 compacts of statehood making them null and void?

    While I do not think that the UN-free zone is going to have any real effect unless it gives many other counties the idea to follow suit, ignoring the U.S. Forest Service and cutting trees in open defiance of federal regulations is bound to get someone's attention. If nothing else, it is a declaration of self-governance and a rejection of iron-fisted regulations putting all manner of things above The People and above the rights protected by the Constitution.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    There is a growing divide in Oregon (this article/vote was from 2002) between folks who have been here for a long time and those from the ongoing invasion from the People's Socialist Republik of Kalifornia. Folks in Oregon's rural areas don't take very kindly to being told what they can and cannot do on their own land. If a person isn't hurting anyone else then they should be able to pursue life as they see fit.

    Hopefully it will never get this far but I will be laughing at all the socialists that love the UN when the UN "re-wilding" biosphere project comes and takes their land. According to the UN re-wilding maps most of Oregon will be banned from human use.

    Eastern Oregon is even looking at leaving the rest of Oregon and making a new state.

    http://www.kpic.com/news/local/18748849.html

    HOOD RIVER, Ore. - You might think they're crazy. And they agree.
    "Absolutely," said Paul Koch. "We are."

    But they think a little crazy could solve some problems. Hood River residents Ernie DeRocher, Rita Swyers and Paul Koch said they have had enough with the Oregon legislature and it's treatment of rural communities.

    Their biggest concerns are water rights, land rights and the recent loss of the Office of Rural Policy. Their solution is to cut Eastern Oregon off from its western neighbor and call the new state 'Eastern Oregon'.

    How would it be funded? Where would the capital be? And what about the flag?

    "All these things have to be worked out," said Koch.

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    No NAU wrote:
    There is a growing divide in Oregon (this article/vote was from 2002) between folks who have been here for a long time and those from the ongoing invasion from the People's Socialist Republik of Kalifornia.
    A. K. A. Californication. See Sandpoint, ID or Chiloquin, OR.

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    No NAU wrote:
    There is a growing divide in Oregon (this article/vote was from 2002)
    I didn't note the posting date of the article. My apologies. It was forwarded to me by a friend as something current and I didn't notice that it was not.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    Old or not, still good to hear.

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    It is relieving to one extent, but only when viewed the proper way and not distorted.

    That is, the distinction needs to be made that this incidence of self-governance is intended to result in greater freedom, and is still Constitutional.

    However, I can't help but think of municipalities' challenging preemption. Philadelphia is passing restrictive gun laws, against state law, because they feel it is in their interest to do so. We saw that Dickson City, which fortunately has no money to launch such an attack on preemption, expresses a desire to have stricter gun laws, though they at least recognize that it is illegal and aren't pushing the issue in the name of political grandstanding. However, pretty much any municipality wanting to violate preemption could be viewed as doing the same thing as this county. That is, if one ignores the pro-freedom/anti-freedom contrast and substitutes unchecked democracy instead.

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