An awesome article on how to grow ginger in Missouri

To grow the plant in Zone 5 you will have to pay close attention to the frost schedule. The frost in Zone 5 typically ends at the beginning of May. Ginger plants need to be transplanted in the winter, so you must bring them indoors before the first frost in October.
Read more: How to Plant Ginger in Zone 5 | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_5845233_plant-ginger-zone-5.html#ixzz1Ikppqzpl

My opinions on the issues facing Missouri voters this November 2nd

Here is my opinion on the upcoming Missouri amendments and propositions.  You probably already know this, but an amendment changes the law of the land, and a propositions changes the legal code which tells government employees how to enforce the law.

Constitutional Amendment 1 (Proposed by legislation)

“Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to require the office of county assessor to be an elected position in all counties with a charter form of government, except counties with a population between 600,001-699,999?

YES I support this effort however I believe the exemption is unconstitutional so it probably will be challenged if it passes.

Constitutional Amendment 2 (Proposed by legislation) Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to require that all real property used as a homestead by Missouri citizens who are former prisoners of war and have a total service-connected disability be exempt from property taxes?

NO I do not support this measure because it creates a special status situation.  The 4th amendment of the US Constitution explains the responsibility of American government to respect the rights of private property.  When you register and pay your government according to how much property you control, this basic right turns into a government granted prev ledge.  This should read “all real property used as a homestead by Missouri citizens shall be exempt from property taxes.”

Constitutional Amendment 3Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to prevent the state, counties, and other political subdivisions from imposing any new tax, including a sales tax, on the sale or transfer of homes or any other real estate?
YES I support this because it uses the constitution to prevent government invasion into our lives and how we manage our private property.

Proposition A (Proposed by initiative petition) Earnings Taxes

“Shall Missouri law be amended to:

• repeal the authority of certain cities to use earnings taxes to fund their budgets;

• require voters in cities that currently have an earnings tax to approve continuation of such tax at the next general municipal election and at an election held every 5 years thereafter;

• require any current earnings tax that is not approved by the voters to be phased out over a period of 10 years; and,

• prohibit any city from adding a new earnings tax to fund their budget?”

YES I support this.  Government should be funded by consumption taxes collected by the merchants benefiting from the security and productivity increases allowed by the existence of government.  A free American should never be required to report his earnings to his government at any level.

Proposition B (Proposed by initiative petition) Dog Kennels & Owners – Agriculture

“Shall Missouri law be amended to:

• require large-scale dog breeding operations to provide each dog under their care with sufficient food, clean water, housing and space; necessary veterinary care; regular exercise and adequate rest between breeding cycles;

• prohibit any breeder from having more than 50 breeding dogs for the purpose of selling their puppies as pets; and

• create a misdemeanor crime of “puppy mill cruelty” for any violations?”

NO I appose this for many reasons.  The most dominant is the fact that we already have good laws regarding this industry.  This law opens the door for government interference in the private business of the people living in Missouri.

October 26, 2010 Subscribe | Unsubscribe

Senator Luann Ridgeway – Serving Clay County
Website | Contact Me | Biography | Newsroom

 

Tuesday, November 2nd General Election Day 

Statewide Ballot Measures

On Tuesday, November 2nd, Missourians across the state will head to the polls to cast their vote in this year’s general election.  You will be voting on candidates for various offices, plus you have the opportunity to vote on several proposals that, if adopted, will change our state laws or Constitution. These ballot measures cover topics ranging from taxes to regulations on agriculture. I want to provide you with a brief outline of these proposals to help you make informed choices on election day.

Constitutional Amendment 1 (Proposed by legislation)

“Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to require the office of county assessor to be an elected position in all counties with a charter form of government, except counties with a population between 600,001-699,999?

It is estimated this proposal will have no costs or savings to state or local governmental entities. (Estimate by State Auditor.) Of the two counties with a charter form of government and an appointed assessor, this proposal affects only St. Louis County (Jackson County is exempted). By 74-26%, St. Louis County voters passed a ballot proposal in August to elect their county assessor, which is also the intent of the proposed constitutional amendment.

Clay County voters currently elect our assessor.  However, there have been proposals to change Clay County to a charter form of government.  Depending on how the charter is drafted, it could remove the power of Clay County residents to elect our assessor. If you are okay with the possibility that our county assessor could be hired by other elected officials (and therefore not elected by the voters), you may choose to vote “no”. On the other hand, if you want to ensure that our county assessor is always elected and therefore directly accountable to the voters, you should vote “yes”.

Constitutional Amendment 2 (Proposed by legislation) Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to require that all real property used as a homestead by Missouri citizens who are former prisoners of war and have a total service-connected disability be exempt from property taxes?

The number of qualified former prisoners of war and the amount of each exemption are unknown, however, because the number who meet the qualifications is expected to be small, the cost to local governmental entities should be minimal. Revenue to the state blind pension fund may be reduced by $1,200. (Estimate by State Auditor.)  Most property taxes go to public schools and the estimated reduction to schools and all local governments is $186,717.

Constitutional Amendment 3Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to prevent the state, counties, and other political subdivisions from imposing any new tax, including a sales tax, on the sale or transfer of homes or any other real estate?

If approved, this proposed constitutional amendment would prohibit a new tax, including a sales tax, upon the sale or transfer of real estate.  Since these transactions are not currently taxed, the adoption of this amendment would have no impact on state or local tax revenues.  Opponents of this measure tend to be those who generally don’t like carving out more items for tax exemption, which further complicates our tax code.  Also, many people would like to see some form of “Fair Tax” imposed in Missouri, which would eliminate the state income tax and replace it with a broad-based sales tax, which may include some form of taxation on the sale of real estate.   If your views fall into either one of these categories, you may choose to vote “No”.  Supporters of this amendment want to ensure that real estate transactions continue to remain tax-free.  A “yes” vote supports this position.

Proposition A (Proposed by initiative petition) Earnings Taxes

“Shall Missouri law be amended to:

• repeal the authority of certain cities to use earnings taxes to fund their budgets;

• require voters in cities that currently have an earnings tax to approve continuation of such tax at the next general municipal election and at an election held every 5 years thereafter;

• require any current earnings tax that is not approved by the voters to be phased out over a period of 10 years; and,

• prohibit any city from adding a new earnings tax to fund their budget?”

The proposal could eliminate certain city earnings taxes. For 2010, Kansas City and the City of St. Louis budgeted earnings tax revenue of $199.2 million and $141.2 million, respectively. Reduced earnings tax deductions could increase state revenues by $4.8 million. The total cost or savings to state and local governmental entities is unknown. (Estimate by State Auditor.) St. Louis and Kansas City collect earnings tax from those who live in or work in these cities. This proposal would allow voters in these cities to decide whether to continue or phase out the earnings tax. Also, this proposal would prohibit any other cities from enacting an earnings tax.

If you support the ability of cities to tax your earnings, then you would vote “no” as this vote will continue to allow earnings taxes. If you want to eliminate the Kansas City Earnings Tax (which equals 1% of your wages) or at least want the chance to vote on whether this tax should be kept or repealed, you should vote “yes”.  Also, if you want to prevent other cities around the state (including Liberty, Smithville, Gladstone, etc.) from ever imposing an earnings tax on your income, you should also vote “yes”.

Proposition B (Proposed by initiative petition) Dog Kennels & Owners – Agriculture

“Shall Missouri law be amended to:

• require large-scale dog breeding operations to provide each dog under their care with sufficient food, clean water, housing and space; necessary veterinary care; regular exercise and adequate rest between breeding cycles;

• prohibit any breeder from having more than 50 breeding dogs for the purpose of selling their puppies as pets; and

• create a misdemeanor crime of “puppy mill cruelty” for any violations?”

It is estimated state governmental entities will incur costs of $654,768 (on-going costs of $521,356 and one-time costs of $133,412). Some local governmental entities may experience costs related to enforcement activities and savings related to reduced animal care activities. (Estimate by State Auditor.) This proposal is backed by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), which has become a very controversial organization.  It is also backed by local animal rights activists.  Interestingly, I received an e-mail from such an activist, who had this to say about the measure: “Admittedly there are both pros and cons to the intricacies of this particular proposition. It is not written as thoroughly and as perfectly as all animal welfare advocates would hope, and it IS another law in a pile of laws that have not been successfully enforced throughout our state. In addition, if all goes as planned, many mills will close due to not being willing or able to abide by the new regulations which will result in thousands of dogs being displaced and needing homes. Missouri shelters probably WILL see an increase in intake should this pass…. Are we certain that all puppy mills will be “cleaned up” and/or “wiped out” if Prop B passes? No, we’re not.”

According to the Missouri Farm Bureau (which generally supports all Missouri agriculture interests) this ballot proposal would impose “unaffordable and unnecessary regulations on reputable dog breeders. Moreover, breeders who are bad actors that do not comply with existing laws and regulations will not be affected by more regulations.” The Missourians for Animal Care Coalition (www.missourifac.com), including MFB, opposes Prop. B and supports the newly formed Alliance for Truth (www.alliancefortruth.com).

It is generally thought that this measure will pass, even though both proponents and opponents of the measure agree that this will be just another law that won’t be enforced.  Why?  Because the enforcement is mostly at the county or municipal level and, for whatever reason, current laws just aren’t enforced by many county prosecutors.  There are probably as many reasons for this as there are prosecutors (strained budgets require them to concentrate on crimes against persons is one I’ve heard).  Other opponents are concerned that this law is only the beginning of the HSUS agenda that they believe will lead to more laws preventing standard practices for dairy, beef, poultry and pork production.  This issue is very emotional as no one wants to see animals suffer.  However, both supporters and opponents of this measure seem to agree that the outcome won’t do much to stop “bad actors” involved in dog breeding or kenneling.

 

 

Contact Information
Capitol Office
State Capitol Building 

Room 221
Jefferson City, MO  65101

 

Website:
http://www.senate.mo.gov/ridgeway
Phone Number:
(toll-free) 866.875.8348  

573.751.2547

 

 

 

Missouri Vaccine Exemption Forms 2010 school year

Contrary to rumors begin spread by some employees calling themselves officials at local schools you DO NOT need to vaccinate your children for them to attend school.   The statute has changed some.

Here are the statutes covering vaccine exemption in Missouri.

https://www.sos.mo.gov/adrules/csr/previous/19csr/19csr699/19c20-28a.pdf

Here is a cut out of the exact language.

2. Religious exemption. A child shall be

exempted from the immunization requirements
of this rule as provided in section
167.181, RSMo if one (1) parent or guardian
objects in writing to the school administrator
that immunization of that child violates
his/her religious beliefs. This exemption on
Department of Health Form Imm.P.11A shall
be placed on file with the school immunization
health record.
Here is a picture of the form.

Your school should have copies of this form on hand.  Don’t be surprised if they don’t.  Cut and past this one, print it out and sign it.  It is a legal document and must be accepted in place of a shot record for your child.

Proposition C made a strong statement that we the people will decide what is good for us.  We refuse government mandates when it comes to health care.

Please let me know if I can help further.

DrD

Know the facts about Missouri Prop C

Prop C does not allow insurance companies to deny you benefits. You can participate in any plan you choose including the federally designed plan.
Prop C does not increase your premiums, in fact it lowers overall costs by allowing market forces to force them down. There is nothing like a monopoly to increase cost to the consumer.
Prop C does protect your privacy, why does the IRS need to know your BMI (how fat you are) anyway? Wait until you get that call from the government reminding you to take your meds!
Prop C does protect your right to determine what procedures you want and refuse those you don’t want. Your right to choose chiropractic, herbs, vitamins, and other natural remedies as an option to drugs and surgery will be protected.

Please read the law before voting.
https://harmonyhealth.wordpress.com/
Fear can only survive in a vacuum of facts. Know the facts, before you decide.

Please vote YES on Prop C

Please take a moment to talk to someone about Missouri Prop C today

Below is the new law in it’s entirety.  I would really appreciate any comments or concerns about this.  I have read it many times and really like what it says.  It basically insures that we can work together to keep your medical records out of the reach of the government.

Why does the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) need to know my BMI (Basic Metabolic Index)(how fat I am)?

On August 3, 2010 Please vote YES on Missouri prop C, and when you talk to your friends and neighbors ask them to support us.

Also, let them know about me.  Many of them are being mistreated by the medical system for things I can quickly fix.  I will waive the initial exam fee of $40.00 for them in your honor.

Here is prop C:

Back to Missouri Health Care Freedom Amendment, Proposition C (2010)

Proposition C will appear on the August 3, 2010 statewide ballot in Missouri. If approved by voters the measure would repeal Section A. Section 375.1175, RSMo, and enact two new sections to be known as sections 1.330 and 375.1175. The new sections would read as follows:[1]
Text

1.330. 1. No law or rule shall compel, directly or indirectly, any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in any health care system.
2. A person or employer may pay directly for lawful health care services and shall not be required by law or rule to pay penalties or fines for paying directly for lawful health care services. A health care provider may accept direct payment for lawful health care services and shall not be required by law or rule to pay penalties or fines for accepting direct payment from a person or employer for lawful health care services.
3. Subject to reasonable and necessary rules that do not substantially limit a person’s options, the purchase or sale of health insurance in private health care systems shall not be prohibited by law or rule.
4. This section does not:
(1) Affect which health care services a health care provider or hospital is required to perform or provide;
(2) Affect which health care services are permitted by law;
(3) Prohibit care provided under workers’ compensation as provided under state law;
(4) Affect laws or regulations in effect as of January 1, 2010;
(5) Affect the terms or conditions of any health care system to the extent that those terms and conditions do not have the effect of punishing a person or employer for paying directly for lawful health care services or a health care provider or hospital for accepting direct payment from a person or employer for lawful health care services.
5. As used in this section, the following terms shall mean:
(1) “Compel”, any penalties or fines;
(2) “Direct payment or pay directly”, payment for lawful health care services without a public or private third party, not including an employer, paying for any portion of the service;
(3) “Health care system”, any public or private entity whose function or purpose is the management of, processing of, enrollment of individuals for or payment for, in full or in part, health care services or health care data or health care information for its participants;
(4) “Lawful health care services”, any health-related service or treatment to the extent that the service or treatment is permitted or not prohibited by law or regulation that may be provided by persons or businesses otherwise permitted to offer such services; and
(5) “Penalties or fines”, any civil or criminal penalty or fine, tax, salary or wage withholding or surcharge or any named fee with a similar effect established by law or rule by a government established, created or controlled agency that is used to punish or discourage the exercise of rights protected under this section.
375.1175. 1. The director may petition the court for an order directing him to liquidate a domestic insurer or an alien insurer domiciled in this state on the basis:
(1) Of any ground for an order of rehabilitation as specified in section 375.1165, whether or not there has been a prior order directing the rehabilitation of the insurer;
(2) That the insurer is insolvent;
(3) That the insurer is in such condition that the further transaction of business would be hazardous, financially or otherwise, to its policyholders, its creditors or the public;
(4) That the insurer is found to be in such condition after examination that it could not meet the requirements for incorporation and authorization specified in the law under which it was incorporated or is doing business; or
(5) That the insurer has ceased to transact the business of insurance for a period of one year.
2. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, a domestic insurer organized as a stock insurance company may voluntarily dissolve and liquidate as a corporation under sections 351.462 to 351.482, provided that:
(1) The director, in his or her sole discretion, approves the articles of dissolution prior to filing such articles with the secretary of state. In determining whether to approve or disapprove the articles of dissolution, the director shall consider, among other factors, whether:
(a) The insurer’s annual financial statements filed with the director show no written insurance premiums for five years; and
(b) The insurer has demonstrated that all policyholder claims have been satisfied or have been transferred to another insurer in a transaction approved by the director; and
(c) An examination of the insurer pursuant to sections 374.202 to 374.207 has been completed within the last five years; and
(2) The domestic insurer files with the secretary of state a copy of the director’s approval, certified by the director, along with articles of dissolution as provided in section 351.462 or 351.468.

January has been good for Liberty in Missouri!

This was a good week for Liberty in Missouri.

by  Paul Hamby

On Tuesday, the Missouri state milk board held a hearing on raw milk.   The turnout was standing room only.

The controversy over raw milk boils down to people’s basic right to choose what they eat, from whom they can purchase their food and how it is produced.

Springfield News Leader covered the story here;

http://www.news-leader.com/article/20100113/NEWS01/1130451/Advocates-of-raw-milk-consumption-state-case

You can read my written testimony to the state milk board here;

http://www.campaignforliberty.com/blog.php?view=31464

Ron Paul Forums heard us and offered some praise here;

http://www.ronpaulforums.com/showthread.php?p=2491283

Wednesday, was the Missouri State Sovereignty rally at the capital in Jefferson City.

More than a dozen campaign for liberty members attended along with a crowd of more than 500. The rally was put on and promoted by at least 14 grass roots organizations.  Following the rally,  hundreds of the fired up conservatives personally visited their state reps and senators asking them to support the push back legislation. One of the bills that was the main focus of the rally is SJR25 sponsored by Missouri Senator Jane Cunningham  The bill  “Prohibits laws interfering with freedom of choice in health care”

view it here;   http://house.mo.gov/content.aspx?info=/bills101/sbills/sj025.htm

Here is a photo of the capitol rotunda with the  standing room only rally.

http://www.facebook.com/search/?ref=search&q=larrymiller_7%40yahoo.com&init=quick#/photo.php?pid=31040827&id=1221782802

Grass roots training was provided after the rally.

The press was in attendance and more than 30 stories have aired on TV, radio and newspapers throughout the state.  The AP covered the event and sent the story nationwide.  Kansas had similar rallies on Friday.

The movement to push back the federal government is alive and well,  based on the 10th amendment of the US Constitution.

This event set the tone for the Missouri political climate in 2010.   The Missouri Sovereignty project, founded by Thomas Grady, sent a letter to Missouri AG Christ Koster asking him to challenge the Federal government on the Universal Health Care Control bill Congress is trying to pass.

http://www.missourisovereigntyproject.com/call-on-koster.html

If you want to volunteer to help,  join at www.missourisovereigntyproject.com Look at pledges tab to see if your rep and senator have signed on.  If not,  ask them to sign the MO Sov Pledge.  If they have signed,  let them know you are watching and appreciate their support.

Missouri Legislative leaders seemed to like the idea of asking our Attorney General to push back the Federal government, so they sent letters of their own this week.

http://primebuzz.kcstar.com/?q=node/21004

The conservative group Club for Growth now has a pledge asking elected officials to push back the federal health care control bill.

“I hereby pledge to the people of my state upon my election to the U.S. Senate to sponsor and support legislation to repeal any federal health takeover passed in 2010 and replace it with real reforms that lower health-care costs without growing government.”

State Senator Chuck Purgason was the first to sign their pledge.  Congressman Roy Blunt quickly jumped on the bandwagon.   Purgason and Blunt are both Republican candidates for Kit Bond’s US Senate seat.  http://www.stlbeacon.org/content/view/14218/314/

Seems that Thomas Grady has started a movement that everyone wants to pile on.

http://www.mogop.org/wp/2010/01/1672/

If the Universal Health Care Control bill somehow does get passed,  there is a nationwide effort to challenge it in court on a number of issues.  Oops,  I used Hillary’s title of her 1990’s effort at Universal Health Care.  Notice they stopped using that title.  Perhaps that is because according to the Democrats, there are 45 million uninsured Americans.  15 million don’t want health care and prefer to pay their own way.  15 million are illegal immigrants and Pelosi/Reid’s bills leave about 16 million still uninsured.   Hmmmmmm?

Missouri Citizens for Property Rights, represented by Ron Calzone,  started gathering signatures for the epic eminent domain initiative at the capital rally Wednesday.  The support for MOCPR eminent domain effort was overwhelming as people wanting to sign the petition surrounded his booth at the capital.   This ballot initiative would stop government from using eminent domain for private use in Missouri.

The Missouri appeals court recently ruled in favor of MOCPR and cleared the way to start gathering signatures to get this issue on the ballot.   You can read an update on this here;

http://www.campaignforliberty.com/blog.php?view=31082 If you would like to help with this effort, contact Ron Calzone ron@mo-cpr.org http://www.mo-cpr.org

The  Missouri Rural Crises Center organized a Family Farm Day Rally at the state capital on Tuesday afternoon.   It was well attended – standing room only.   Tim and Rhonda provided grass roots training and sent the attendees out to talk to their legislators one on one.   They are fighting CAFOs in Missouri and opposing the establishment of a new livestock board that would take power away from legislators and give it to an appointed board.

Republican candidate for state auditor has given a new meaning to our popular term Audit The Fed.   Icet promised this week that he will audit the federal stimulus dollars spent in Missouri if he wins the auditor race.  http://www.stlbeacon.org/content/view/14198/314/

The current state auditor sought her 15 minutes of fame this week by proposing that businesses no longer be able to keep the small portion of sales tax they get for being forced to be the state’s tax collector.   In a political climate of anti government, anti taxes, and the ever growing voice to help businesses so we can get more jobs,  it is amazing how liberals like Auditor Montee continue their NeoMarxist anti-capitalist big government agenda

http://www.missourinet.com/2010/01/13/montee-questions-2-policy/

Friday Meanwhile in Massachusetts,  the race to fill the late Edward Kennedy’s seat has taken an unexpected turn.   The GOP had written of the seat,  but the grassroots conservative movement did not.  Scott Brown the GOP challenger gained steadily in the polls recently.  GOP National chair,  Michael Steele, on his radio tour of the nation was repeatedly dogged by questions on why the National GOP was not in the fight.  Last weekend,  Steele sent out a national appeal to help Scott Brown.  This was followed up by appeals from quite an array across the Center Right spectrum of groups.   Suddenly Brown was bringing in a million dollars a day,  his poll numbers are soaring and the race garnered the national spotlight as a public referendum on the Neo-Marxist Health Control bill in Congress.   Brown as US Senator would break the 60 vote filibuster proof majority the dems currently have in Congress.  National pundits are now saying the MA race will be considered judgment on Barack Obama’s first year in office.   In my opinion,  it already is.  The fact that a Republican has a fighting chance in the land of Barney Frank and Edward Kennedy speaks louder than words.  Back to Missouri,  Talk radio throughout the state has focused on the race with many encouraging Missourians to send money to support Scott Brown.  Today the MO GOP sent out a letter asking for support of the Scott Brown race.

Brown’s democrat opponent has abandoned an issue oriented campaign and decided instead to attack you!

MA Democrats press release: Scott Brown made a “deal with the devil” with “radical tea party groups”

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/01/12/dem-press-release-scott-brown-made-a-deal-with-the-devil-with-radical-tea-party-groups/

I do hope he made a deal with the tea party groups.  Cause the deal we have been asking for is a pledge to follow the constitution,  to balance the budget,  to remove barriers for business such as high taxes and regulations.   Now, that is a deal we can all live and prosper with.

KS rep Dennis Moore along with  Gordon, Tanner, and Baird announced retirements.  Conn Senator  Chris Dodd and ND Senator Dorgan also chose not to run again in a climate of angry hostile electorate.  The Grassroots conservative movement sent them pink slips.   Now folks are asking, when will Missouri’s Skelton announce he is stepping down?  Surely he can read the tea leaves!  http://primebuzz.kcstar.com/?q=node/21007

Upcoming events

Saturday, January 16  I&R training in KC with Ron Calzone of the Missouri  contact Ron Calzone ron@mo-cpr.org http://www.mo-cpr.org

Thursday January 21 6 pm.  State Sen. Chuck Purgason, a Republican candidate for the Missouri U.S. Senate seat now held by Kit Bond, will speak in St. Joseph on Thursday, Jan. 21.

Mr. Purgason will be the featured speaker at the January meeting of the Northwest Missouri Republican Club.

http://www.stjoenews.net/news/2010/jan/14/purgason-plans-st-joseph-speech/

Friday January 22 7 pm   Time to have some fun!  Come down and play Political Trivia Night at O’Dowd’s Zona Rosa.  Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online here;

http://acttrivia.eventbrite.com/

Thank you for fighting for Liberty!

Paul Hamby

Missouri Co-Coordinator

Campaign For Liberty

Missouri Government Plots Undercover Sting Operations Against Families Selling Raw Milk

As many of you know, I use only raw milk in my house.  The following article explains the insane assault on my right to choose what foods I feed my children happening right here in Missouri!  If you care about this issue please take the steps laid out here to help me protect access to the wonderful safe food product.

Missouri Government Plots Undercover Sting Operations Against Families Selling Raw Milk

Monday, December 07, 2009
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com (See all articles…)

http://www.naturalnews.com/027675_raw_milk_Missouri.html

(NaturalNews) Imagine being watched by two undercover cops as you engage in an illicit deal in a deserted parking lot. The buyer hesitantly hands you some cash. You flash a look over your shoulder, just to make sure the coast is clear, then you hand over the contraband. Neither of you says a word. You just nod, acknowledging the deal is done, then you head back to your car and buckle up for the drive home.

But before you can even put the car into drive, a screeching formation of police cars, surrounds you, sirens wailing. Armed officers leap from their vehicles, guns drawn and sunglasses glaring. “Come out with your hands up!” they shout.

You slowly open the driver’s door of your car and inch out of your seat with both hands raised in surrender, cowering behind the open door. “What did I do, officer? What’s my crime?”

Their answer comes back loud and intimidating: “SELLING RAW MILK!”

Springfield Missouri: Where farmers are branded criminals

The above description is a dramatization of real events that happened recently in Springfield, Missouri, where the state has decided to spend considerable taxpayer resources running a sting operating against a family that was caught dealing – gulp! – raw milk in a parking lot.

Yes, both the Missouri Dept. of Health and the state Attorney General (Chris Koster) have decided that prosecuting a farm family for illegally “trafficking” raw milk should be at the top of their list of priorities. The family being targeted by state officials is the Bechard family, of Armand and Teddi Bechard, and their children Joseph, Hananiah, Kazia and Katie.

The name of the cow offering the milk is reportedly “Misty.”

As the Springfield, Missouri News-Leader paper reports, “Two undercover investigators with the Springfield-Greene County Health Department allegedly caught two of the couple’s daughters on two occasions selling a gallon of milk each from a Springfield parking lot. Charges followed in municipal court.”

In case you’re not yet sure what you’re reading here, note carefully that these daughters were not caught selling crack, meth or crank. They weren’t dealing second-hand pharmaceuticals to yuppie school kids. They weren’t selling e.coli-contaminated hamburger meat, cancer-causing diet sodas (made with aspartame) or canned soups laced with MSG. They weren’t even selling broiler chickens contaminated with salmonella — just as you can find in every grocery store in America. Nope, they were selling raw milk. You know, the bovine mother’s milk, unpasteurized, unprocessed, non-homogenized and wholly pure, natural and innocent. The stuff America was raised on. The stuff your parents fed you when you were a kid, if your family was lucky enough to have a cow.

In Missouri today, selling such a natural product is now apparently a criminal act. What’s next? A ban on farm-fresh eggs because the Dept. of Health doesn’t control their quality? The outlawing of raw broccoli because broccoli contains natural anti-cancer medicine?

Fortunately, the Bechard family is fighting back. As reported by the News-Leader:

“They will not sign a consent order to make the state’s complaint go away and they’re defending themselves against the city charges, too. They’ve gotten legal help from the The Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund, a nonprofit organization made up of farmers and consumers pooling resources to fight for the rights of family farmers trying to get unprocessed food to consumers who want it.”

A view from the Missouri-born Health Ranger

I grew up in Raytown, Missouri, just a few miles from Springfield. I spent more than a few summers on a farm near St. Louis, where we would milk the cows, gather fresh eggs from the chickens, and fish for catfish in the pond. I’m not exactly a farm boy, but I’m familiar enough with living off the land to know the difference between real food and processed food (a distinction the Missouri Dept. of Health still hasn’t gleaned…)

When I grew up in Raytown, there were fresh-food farms within driving distance where we could get fresh milk, eggs and vegetables from small family operations. It was a way of life for many families living in the suburbs of Kansas City, and none of us could have imagined then that families selling fresh milk would one day be treated like criminal contraband dealers by overzealous law state officials.

Yet another victimless “crime”

The effort to criminalize sellers of raw milk is misguided on so many levels that it just begs to be called out as perhaps one of the worst uses of taxpayer dollars yet dreamed up by clueless bureaucrats. For starters, raw milk is clearly sold as “raw milk” — there’s no mislabeling here. The people buying the milk know very well they’re buying raw milk. In fact, they go to great lengths to seek out raw milk in order to benefit from its numerous health advantages over processed, pasteurized milk.

Secondly, any serious crime worth investigating requires a victim. But there’s no victim in the “crime” of selling raw milk. The family farms sell their milk at a fair price, and a knowledgeable consumer purchases the raw milk, knowing exactly what they’re buying for their dollar. Where’s the victim here? (Misty the cow, perhaps? Probably not, as cows on family farms are treated far better than cows in most dairy factories.)

This raw milk persecution attempt is yet another example of a “victimless crime” being invented, then pursued by overzealous state officials who clearly have nothing useful to pursue (or who have a serious problem setting priorities).

In a world where children are being poisoned by aspartame, senior citizens are being drugged into zombie-like states in nursing homes, where school boys are being dosed with “speed” amphetamine ADHD drugs, bacon is laced with a cancer-causing chemical known as sodium nitrite and two-thirds of the broiler chickens sold in grocery stores are contaminated with salmonella, are you telling me that the friendly selling of raw milk in a parking lot is at the top of the list of “crimes” being investigated by the Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster and his overworked staff?

Seriously?

It takes a wild leap across the chasm of wrong vs. right to arrive at the bewildering conclusion that a couple of farm girls selling two gallons of raw milk deserves investigators, a sting operation, a Dept. of Health inquiry and the attention of the state Attorney General. It almost makes me think these bureaucrats are all smoking crack, which can be purchased in the next parking lot over, by the way. But crack dealers aren’t their concern, it seems… It’s those darned raw milk families that are ruining Middle America!

Take action: Tell the Missouri Attorney General to keep his hands off raw milk

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster may be a good AG, for all I know. He’s gone after Medicaid fraud, and that earns him some kudos in my book. This whole raw milk thing, if I had to take a guess, is probably some hare-brained idea handed to him by some nutritionally-ignorant staffer who convinced him this could earn him some points for “getting tough on raw milk.” (Is he seriously going to issue a press release announcing a prosecutorial “victory” over two teen girls selling a couple gallons of fresh milk? It’s sort of like prosecuting little kids for running a neighborhood lemonade stand without a business license…)

In any case, it’s worth letting Koster know you think prosecuting these girls for selling raw milk is a complete waste of time and (taxpayer) money. AGs have an important function in protecting consumers from fraud, but in order to be effective, they’ve got to get their priorities straight. Wouldn’t Koster’s time be far better spent suing the drug companies for running fraudulent, misleading television advertisements that exaggerate the benefits of their drugs while glossing over their severe side effects?

Here’s how you can file a consumer complaint against the Missouri Attorney General: Go to http://ago.mo.gov/consumercomplaint.htm to get started.

You can then fill out an online form or you can call 1-800-392-8222 for more information about filing a complaint.

Remember, this AG office is paid by your taxpayer dollars (if you live in Missouri, anyway, and I did for almost 20 years). You have every right to let them know when you think their investigation efforts have gone awry.

Be polite in filing your complaint, but also be firm. Don’t let this Missouri AG get away with prosecuting a small family farm operation for selling fresh milk to willing customers.

The industry assault on raw milk

Actually, reading this last sentence, I can’t even believe America has devolved to the point where such a statement is necessary. Of course raw milk should be legal to sell. After all, grocery stores are full of raw food items such as raw chicken, raw beef and raw fruits and vegetables. Why are state health authorities selectively up in arms over raw milk?

I’ll give you the answer in three words: The Dairy Industry. The dairy industry sees raw milk as competition to its pasteurized, homogenized, standardized, factory-produced “junk” milk product, which promotes heart disease. Raw milk is healthier, more natural and more local than processed milk, and the more consumers learn about raw milk, the less they’ll buy processed milk.

Raw milk is a financial threat to the dairy industry in much the same way that industrial hemp is a threat to the cotton industry (or stevia is a threat to the manufacturer of aspartame). So the dairy industry pressures state and federal bureaucrats to outlaw raw milk and criminalize individuals who dare try to sell it.

This is a protection racket, pure and simple, and it has been conjured up by the dairy industry to protect their profits at the expense of consumer freedom.

Don’t you find it amazing that in the Land of the Free (and the Home of the Brave), that anyone caught buying or selling fresh raw milk is prosecuted as a common criminal? What has America come to if we’re going to start locking up the very same local farmers who provide food security for situations where the long supply chains of just-in-time food delivery break down? If the Missouri lawmakers had any sense at all, they’d be encouraging local production of fresh milk, eggs, grains and other foods to help keep Missouri more self-reliant. But no, fresh milk sellers get arrested and charged with crimes, even while most Missourians drink milk imported from other states!

Missouri’s stance on milk seems a lot like America’s stance on hemp: Criminalize American farmers while importing all the industrial hemp from Canada, where it’s grown legally (and profitably). It is at times like this that you realize agricultural policy in America often seems specifically designed to punish farmers.

I grew up around farmers. I have a tremendous amount of respect for them: For their sweat equity, their hard-won agricultural victories and their seemingly endless financial enslavement to a system of distorted agricultural policies that allows them no escape. Farmers invest their lives in the production of food that most consumers carelessly take for granted. Today, just two percent of the population produces all the food for the other 98 percent — most of whom haven’t a clue where real food comes from.

Real food, it turns out, comes from real farms run by real people. People like the Bechards. And it is these people — these un-celebrated, hard-working, honest American farmers — who should be recognized as the backbone of American prosperity, for without them, we would all go hungry, and even the most specialized, highly-educated scientist would be reduced to a drooling, blabbering infant if all the food disappeared for a mere 96 hours.

And yet, instead of being celebrated, these small family farmers are now being labeled criminals and prosecuted for the “crime” of providing real food to real people. That this is taking place in my home country — indeed, near my home town in Missouri — just breaks my heart.

Never pick a fight with the people who grow your food

It is a sad day indeed for America when tyrant bureaucrats are allowed to run rampant over the family-run farms upon which this great country was originally founded. How quickly America forgets its history… How quickly it abandons those who delivered abundance to us and asked for nothing in return other than a day of sunshine, an occasional rejuvenating rain shower, and a fair price at the market for their hard-won goods.
To the Missouri AG, Chris Koster, you should be ashamed of yourself as both a Missourian and an American for pursuing this prosecution against the Bechard family. It is people like you who are destroying this nation, even as you claim to be saving it.
When you were a young boy in school, and you studied American history and the Civil War, you probably asked yourself, “How could Americans fight each other and kill each other? Who could have started such a conflict?”
The answer, sadly, is people just like you. People who trample the God-given rights of American farmers. People who deny consumers their freedom to buy a nourishing beverage harvested straight off the farm. It is people like you who create the anger and resentment that far too often results in people picking up arms to protect their natural rights that tyrants like you try to steal away from them (under the false pretense of “authority,” no less).
As a Missourian myself, I can tell you that Missouri farmers will not put up with this kind of tyranny for very long. When their livelihoods and their freedoms are clearly threatened by outlandish laws enforced by bureaucratic tyrants who have abandoned all common sense, they will rise up against you, and you will find yourself in a spitting match with a tireless band of rugged Missourians who wrestle with John Deere tractor hydraulics each morning before you even get out of bed.
To you, it’s just a gallon of milk. But to these farmers, it’s their livelihood. Think about that for a minute before you go slapping handcuffs on the very same people who put food on your mama’s table.
– Mike Adams, the Health Ranger

Alumni of Raytown High School, Raytown, Missouri, where I was taught how to think for myself by my English composition teacher Mrs. Wagner
P.S. Help support the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund by making a tax-deductible contribution to: http://www.ftcldf.org
(This is one of the key legal defense organizations protecting farmers’ rights to sell raw milk.)
Sources for this story include:

News-Leader:
http://www.news-leader.com/article/…

Missouri AG:

http://ago.mo.gov/

About the author: Mike Adams is a natural health author and technology pioneer with a passion for teaching people how to improve their health He is a prolific writer and has published thousands of articles, interviews, reports and consumer guides, impacting the lives of millions of readers around the world who are experiencing phenomenal health benefits from reading his articles. Adams is an independent journalist with strong ethics who does not get paid to write articles about any product or company. In 2007, Adams launched EcoLEDs, a maker of super bright LED light bulbs that are 1000% more energy efficient than incandescent lights. He also founded an environmentally-friendly online retailer called BetterLifeGoods.com that uses retail profits to help support consumer advocacy programs. He’s also a noted pioneer in the email marketing software industry, having been the first to launch an HTML email newsletter technology that has grown to become a standard in the industry. Adams volunteers his time to serve as the executive director of the Consumer Wellness Center, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and regularly pursues cycling, nature photography, Capoeira and Pilates. Known by his callsign, the ‘Health Ranger,’ Adams posts his missions statements, health statistics and health photos at www.HealthRanger.org