Nullify Federal Control Over What You EatIn the Name of Safety
While FDA apologists claim the agency only wants to protect consumers, in truth, federal regulations tend to benefit big companies and squeeze out family farms. In the name of safety, FDA regulations limit your ability to access local, fresh food.
For example, the Wholesome Meat Act of 1967 mandates meat must be slaughtered and processed at a federally inspected slaughter house, or one inspected in a state with meat inspection laws at least as strict as federal requirements. Small slaughterhouses cannot meet the requirements. As a result, the meat processing industry went through massive consolidation. Since passage of the act, the number of slaughterhouses dropped from more than 10,000 to less than 3,000. Today, instead of hundreds of companies processing meat, three corporations control virtually the entire industry.
This does not promote food safety. In fact, by concentrating meat processing in a few facilities, the likelihood of widespread contamination increases. A single sick cow can infect thousands of pounds of beef in one of these corporate slaughterhouses. In a more diversified, decentralized system, outbreaks generally remain limited to small regions. You never saw these nationwide recalls in the era of diversified meat processing.
The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) “directs FDA to build an integrated national food safety system in partnership with state and local authorities explicitly recognizing that all food safety agencies need to work in integrated ways to achieve public health goals.”
Essentially, this means dictating state food laws.
The Goal: Complete Federal Control
As with so many expansions of federal power, the FDA has piggybacked on the “War on Terror” to assert more control over state and local food regulations.
The 2002 Bioterrorism Act mandated “any facility engaged in manufacturing, processing, packing or holding food for consumption in the United States be registered with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).” FSMA expands the requirements to include firms exclusively engaged in intrastate commerce. A section of FSMA called Hazard Analysis and Risk-based Preventative Controls (HARPC) requires the owner or operator of a facility to “implement a food safety plan to prevent the adulteration and misbranding of food.”
“Any ‘facility’ that is required to register with DHHS must also comply with HARPC even if that ‘facility’ is operating only in intrastate commerce,” Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund President Pete Kennedy said.
This gives the FDA wide-ranging power to meddle in state food and beverage regulations.
The feds also buy compliance with their mandates by bribing state agencies through funding.
The FDA Food Code establishes one-size-fits-all regulations for retail food establishments. It currently operates as a voluntary program. Nevertheless, every state has adopted it in one form or the other. According to Kennedy, the FDA makes the food codes effectively mandatory by entering into “cooperative agreements” with state agencies under a funding opportunity called “Advancing Conformance with the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards (VNRFRPS).”
“A stated goal of the program is to ‘encourage widespread, uniform and complete adoption of the FDA Food Code.’ A complete adoption means that little local food production and distribution would escape the requirements of the regulatory-heavy food code.”
An attempt to deregulate pumpkin pies in Virginia this year demonstrates how federal funding and the Food Codes extend the federal governments deep beyond state borders.
“A bill that would have legalized the unregulated sale of potentially hazardous baked goods (foods subject to time and temperature control, e.g. pumpkin pies) was killed after the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) informed members of a legislative subcommittee that the bill was in violation of the FDA Food Code. The bill was initially passed by the same subcommittee one week earlier. Virginia has adopted the food code which calls for regulation of potentially hazardous food such as baked goods. In 2015, VDACS received $70,000 from FDA under the ‘Advancing Conformance’ funding opportunity.”
How to Stop It
But there is a way to stop this kind of federal overreach. There is a way to reassert state and local control over food. James Madison gave us the blueprint in Federalist #46 – a refusal to cooperate with officers of the union. The FDA cannot force widespread, uniform and complete adoption of its rules and regulations on its own. It can only do it with state and local help. Kennedy made this very point in a recent article.
“FDA needs the help of state agencies to implement and enforce the FSMA requirements; the agency does not have close to the manpower needed to enforce FSMA on its own. FDA will be entering into more cooperative agreements than ever to get state help on FSMA; states will be spending more of their time enforcing federal law and less enforcing their own laws. State agencies will be increasingly conscripted by the federal government.”
The states do not have to enter into these cooperative agreements with the feds.The federal government cannot force states to enforce or implement federal regulations. In fact, state legislatures can prohibit these agreements completely. States do not have to comply with the FDA Food Codes. If the states say, “No!” the FDA has zero power or authority to do anything about it.
Kennedy said of food freedom, “It’s going to happen in the states.”
State legislatures need to get busy and prove Kennedy right.
Unconstitutional: Search Warrants Based on Governmental “Need”
Would all of our lives be safer if the government could break down all the doors it wishes, listen to all the conversations it could find and read whatever emails and text messages it could acquire? Perhaps. But who would want to live in such a society?
To prevent that from happening here, the Framers ratified the Fourth Amendment, which is the linchpin of privacy and was famously called by Justice Louis Brandeis “the right to be let alone — the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men.” He wrote those words in his dissent in the first wiretapping case to reach the Supreme Court, Olmstead v. United States, in 1928.
Roy Olmstead had been convicted for bootlegging on the basis of words he used in overheard telephone conversations. Because he had used a phone at his place of work that the government had tapped without breaking and entering his workplace, the high court ruled — despite the fact that the government had not obtained a warrant — that he had no right to privacy. Brandeis dissented.
Over time, the Brandeis dissent became the law. The Fourth Amendment, which protects the privacy of all in our “persons, houses, papers, and effects,” was interpreted to cover telephone conversations and eventually emails and text messages. So today, if the government wants information contained in those communications, it needs to obtain a search warrant, which the Fourth Amendment states can only be given by a judge — and only upon a showing of probable cause of evidence of a crime contained in the communications it seeks.
If the government does not obtain a search warrant and listens to phone conversations or reads emails or text messages nevertheless and attempts to use what it heard or read to acquire other evidence or directly in the prosecution of a defendant, that is unlawful. That type of information is known as the fruit of the poisonous tree.
Evidence procured that is the fruit of the poisonous tree has been inadmissible in federal criminal prosecutions in the United States for the past 100 years and in state criminal prosecutions for the past 50 years.
Now comes the super-secret court established by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, reaffirmed by Congress last year under the so-called USA Freedom Act. Beware the names of federal statutes, as they often produce results that are the opposite of what their names imply; and this is one of them.
Congress has unconstitutionally authorized the FISA court to issue search warrants on the basis of governmental need — a standard that is no standard at all because the government can always claim that it needs what it wants. The FISA court does not require a showing of probable cause for its warrants, because it accepts the myth that the government is listening to or reading words by foreign people for foreign intelligence purposes only, not for prosecutorial purposes.
Never mind that Congress cannot change the plain meaning of the Constitution. Never mind that the Fourth Amendment protects all people in the United States, American or foreign, from all parts of the government for all purposes, not just criminal prosecutions.
Yet the FISA court still grants general warrants — look where you wish and seize what you find — exposing our innermost thoughts to the prying eyes of the intelligence community in direct contravention of the Fourth Amendment.
Enter the USA Freedom Act. One of its selling points to Congress was that it would permit the FISA court to appoint a lawyer to challenge hypothetically some of its behavior. The court recently made such an appointment, and the lawyer appointed challenged the policy of the National Security Agency, the federal government’s domestic spying agency, of sharing data it acquires via the unconstitutional FISA warrants with the FBI. She argued that the data sharing goes far beyond the stated purpose of the FISA warrants, which is to gather foreign intelligence data from foreign people, not evidence of domestic crimes of anyone whose emails might be swept up by those warrants.
The challenge revealed publicly what many of us have condemned for years: The NSA actually makes its repository of raw data from emails and text messages available for the FBI to scour at will, without the FBI’s obtaining a warrant issued by a judge pursuant to the Fourth Amendment.
In an opinion issued in November but kept secret until last week, the FISA court rejected the hypothetical challenge of its own appointee and ruled that the NSA could continue to share what it wants with the FBI.
There are several problems with this ruling. The first is the hypothetical nature of the challenge. Federal courts do not exist in a vacuum. They do not render advisory opinions. They can only hear real cases and real controversies involving real plaintiffs and real defendants, not hypothetical ones as was the case here.
The whole apparatus of hypothetical challenge and hypothetical ruling is constitutionally meaningless. It was the moral and legal equivalent of a law school moot court oral argument. Yet federal and soon state law enforcement will interpret it as giving cover to the NSA/FBI practice of data sharing, which is clearly unconstitutional because it is the use of fruit from a poisonous tree.
FISA and the USA Freedom Act were enacted under the premise — the pretense — that the data collected under them would be used for foreign intelligence purposes only so that attacks could be thwarted and methods could be discovered. Yet the use by the FBI of extraconstitutionally obtained intelligence data for ordinary criminal prosecutions defies the stated purposes of the statutes and contradicts the Fourth Amendment.
If this is keeping us safe, who or what will safeguard our freedoms? Who will keep us safe from those who have sworn to uphold the Constitution yet defy it?
Madison and Jefferson Today2>
Nullify! Four Steps to Bring Down Federal Programs
Chipping Away: Six New Nullification Laws Go Into Effect
Nullification News: 12 Bills Pass, 2 More Signed into Law
Action alert on two bills.
Yesterday, the Arizona Senate Committee on Federalism, Mandates, and Fiscal Responsibility passed two bills to help the state follow through on passage of Prop 122 last fall, and limit state resources to implement federal programs.
SB1330 pushes back against federal gun control and SB1331 against NSA mass surveillance.
Both are moving forward to a second committee – different for each bill – and from our inside sources, the votes will be very close on each. In fact, Sen. John Kavanagh will likely be the deciding vote on both. He’ll either vote with his Republican colleagues and move both bills forward, or he’ll side with Democrats and kill one or both.
We urge you to CALL Sen. Kavanagh immediately – we believe he’ll do the right thing if you call him and ask him to vote YES on both SB1330 and SB1331 in each committee that he sits on. (he’s the chair on 1331)
Sen. John Kavanagh – (602) 926-5170
Make sure you’re strong, but respectful. We’re not looking to bash him, or make an enemy. We just want him to know that the public wants him to vote YES on these two bills.
Leave him a voice mail if you need to, and ask him to get back in touch with you – as you want to hear his position on both bills.
If you’d like to call other committee members, this would be helpful as well. But, the one call to Kavanagh is most important right now.
Here are action steps for both bills:
Warning: Do Not Put Your Faith in Elections
Arizona Voters Approve Proposition to Reject Federal Acts
PHOENIX, November 4, 2014 – Today, voters in Arizona approved a ballot measure that follows James Madison’s advice to stop federal overreach. With 80% reporting, the tally held steady and increasing at 51-49%.
Approved was Proposition 122, a state constitutional amendment that enshrines the anti-commandeering doctrine in the state constitution. The language amends the state constitution to give Arizona the ability to “exercise its sovereign authority to restrict the actions of its personnel and the use of its financial resources to purposes that are consistent with the Constitution.”
This language is consistent with the advice of James Madison, who wrote in Federalist #46:
Should an unwarrantable measure of the federal government be unpopular in particular States, which would seldom fail to be the case, or even a warrantable measure be so, which may sometimes be the case, the means of opposition to it are powerful and at hand. The disquietude of the people; their repugnance and, perhaps, refusal to co-operate with the officers of the Union; the frowns of the executive magistracy of the State; the embarrassments created by legislative devices, which would often be added on such occasions, would oppose, in any State, difficulties not to be despised; would form, in a large State, very serious impediments; and where the sentiments of several adjoining States happened to be in unison, would present obstructions which the federal government would hardly be willing to encounter. [emphasis added]
The amendment language mirrors the well-established legal doctrine of anti-commandeering. The Supreme Court has consistently held that the federal government cannot force states to help implement or enforce and federal act or program. It rests primarily on four SCOTUS cases – Prigg v. Pennsylvania (1842), New York v. US (1992), Printz v. US (1997) and National Federation of Businesses v. Sebelius (2012).
Prop 122 places language in the state constitution that would empower the state to pass referendums, bills or use other legal means to end cooperation with an unconstitutional federal act. Supporters of the amendment say the provision allowing the people to vote to refuse to cooperate with federal authorities will prove especially significant.
“Basically, it will allow Arizonians to hold a state referendum on federal policy, something I don’t think has ever been done before,” one supporter said.
While the people of Arizona could hold a referendum like this now, by constitutionalizing the process, it now allows Arizonians to hold a statutory referendum on each issue instead of a constitutional referendum. A statutory referendum requires less signatures to get it on the ballot, something supporters say will allow grassroots groups to initiate the process.The money necessary to get a constitutional referendum on the ballot makes grassroots efforts difficult.
The amendment allows the people of Arizona to deal with unpopular federal programs like Obamacare, gun control, surveillance, and more. Supporters say one of the first issues they plan to target involves federal rules that allow Arizona Child Protective Services to hide important information. This has become an issue in several investigations alleging agency misconduct in the deaths of children under their care. CPS used rules tied to federal funding to refuse to disclose information. Amendment supporters say they will use the new process to forbid state cooperation with any federal rule that shields transparency.
Simply put, the amendment enshrines a process to refuse state cooperation with unconstitutional federal acts in the state constitution. As Judge Andrew Napolitano has said, refusing participation on a state level can make federal laws “nearly impossible to enforce.”
The theory of nullification is based on a view that the States formed the Union by an agreement (or “compact”) among the States, and that as creators of the federal government, the States have the final authority to determine the limits of the power of that government.
Liberty Hangs by a Thread
Today vs the Founders: Are Things Worse for Liberty?
The following four videos comprise a factual and inspiring speech by Publius Huldah (Pen Name) on Nullification.
Publius Huldah on Nullification – Part 1
Publius Huldah on Nullification – Part 2
Publius Huldah on Nullification – Part 3
Publius Huldah on Nullification – Part 4