Sunday, January 29, 2006

Stop NAIS!

I have written here before about NAIS (National Animal Identification System), the insidious plan by the federal bureaucracy and "Big Ag" to microchip every farm (and probably every domestic) animal in the country. It seems to still be rolling on, virtually unopposed, except by some small breeders, organic farmers etc., but virtually everyone who checks into it is horrified. Now Vermont farmer- blogger Walter Jeffries, who writes from Sugar Mountain Farm, has started a new blog called "NoNAIS" dedicated to stopping it.

This is an issue you think would arouse every civil libertarian, traditional conservative, fan of Michael Pollan, and back- to- the- lander, or even the yuppies who buy at Whole Foods-- where are they?

Consider:

"They are snaring homesteaders by including even livestock you might keep for your own consumption. The government is implementing huge "non- compliance" fines if you don't report your backyard flock of chickens, your summer feeder pig, your lawn mowing sheep, etc. This will take away your right to raise your own source of eggs, meat, and wool.

"They are including animals that are not in the food supply such as pets like horses, llamas, etc that are not used for consumption.

"Under the plan every animal must be identified. Any births, deaths, or movements on or off the farm will be required to be logged and reported to the government. If you take your sheep to a show you will have to track their location and submit paperwork to the government. If you go on a trail ride with your horse you will have to report that to the government. If your pig has piglets you'll have to report that and then if some of those piglets die or you eat one you'll have to report that."

And now the government has a NEW plan. This AP story details how the same USDA that wants to bring you NAIS wants to import Chinese poultry. " The Agriculture Department is seeking to allow importing of poultry processed in China, where thousands of birds and several people have died from bird flu..... The Agriculture Department proposed the rule, with no announcement, on Nov. 23. The period during which it accepted comments on the proposal ended Monday. The rule still must be finalized before it takes effect."

You can't make these things up... one of ther easons that the USDA gives for NAIS is to control bird flu, which is about to join "the children" and "cruelty" in the list of the top five excuses to take our liberty away. Please "read the whole thing", cross- post, and spread the info. I haven't even scratched the surface here..

Maybe it's time to move to Russia?? (See below).

Update: a friend and neighbor, rancher Jim Nance, adds the following:

"We have been campaigning against this from the start.

"It is so the large packers will have no liability in any kind of food scare. It will put small producers out of business.

"The funny thing is that the same companies that want the animal IDs are fighting against Country of Origin Labeling. So they could trace an animal back to my ranch, but have no information at all on the thousands of cattle from Mexico and further south!"

12 comments:

Matt Mullenix said...

Steve check the New Mexico Dept. of Ag. website. I just checked ours (La) and found something quite remarkable. I posted it to

http://workinganimal.blogspot.com/

but here's a snippet of the quote:

"...Therefore, we are asking you to voluntarily provide data on names, physical addresses, mailing address and the type of animals you raise. These standards will apply to all animals across the nation by 2006 regardless of their intended use as seedstock, commercial, pets or other personal uses."

(!!!!)

Heidi the Hick said...

Thanks for the heads-up. This is so ridiculous! I'm all for knowing who owns and sells livestock, but it has to stop somewhere. It's all lawyer speak. Who else would insist that we spend more time filling out paperwork than actually raising critters?

Tam said...

Maybe we could kill them with compliance: If everybody in the nation who owns an indoor/outdoor cat mailed the USDA a postcard every time one of their cats entered or exited the house (50 postcards/day/cat), the .gov offices would soon be buried under a cellulose clacier and rendered impotent.

Tam said...

Er, "glacier".

Steve Bodio said...

Tam-- I was thinking of doing the same every time I flew my flock of homing pigeons (50 or so-- right now I don't even know). Or ran my sighthounds (PAWS will likely end up being the same kind of thing). Or moving to Kazakhstan, which is getting pretty easy about guns-- all my friends there have some-- even as we slip backwards..

Glad to have your comments-- I'll put you on the blogroll. Check out the archives for a Kimber with some additions you might like, or I'll email...

Anonymous said...

"the .gov offices would soon be buried under a cellulose glacier and rendered impotent"
Which would give them the excuse to increase their budget.

Anonymous said...

Gosh, that DOES sound like an enormous pain in the ass...(especially because I used to fantasize about living way out in the country where I could have whatever animals I wanted.^^)

Anonymous said...

Say, just noticing -- the NAIA, that agribusiness front that claims to be the advocate for the rights of "animal owners" -- is oddly silent on this HUGE and insidious incursion.

I've chanted it for years to dog hobbyists and hunters -- the NAIA is not your friend -- they are using you to put a populist face on their industrial agenda. Here's more proof.

I'm all for the identification and tracking of food animals in the industrial production stream. Industrial agriculture IS the problem when it comes to food safety and security. But you know, ConAgra et. al. could make that happen in a heartbeat just by bullying their producers. They're very practiced at that. It would have zero effect on homesteaders, small farmers, hobbyists, small livestock breeders, organic operations, etc., who don't do business with them.

So why make it law? First, if the government is setting up the system and enforcing the law, we citizens get to pay for it. Second, it pulls the agribehemoths out of the liability loop. But mostly, it stomps on the little guy and makes him more beholden to the Monster.

Horrible incursion on our civil liberties, and it's all about industrial agriculture owning our government

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Anonymous said...

NAIS messes with property rights. Sign up and you become a "stakeholder" on a "premise"...look up what those words mean in the lectric law library.