Watch this AWESOME video where the cutest little girl explains the difference between a real potato (organic) and a Franken-potato (Satanic). Go ahead, I’ll wait.
I’ll start with why the USDA Organics Program is not a bad thing (sometimes). It gives us a system by which we consumers may recognize products that are raised within strict organic guidelines. It allows us to make informed decisions when we’re at the grocery store and sometimes the farmers’ markets, being able to readily see the familiar green and white logo. In a nutshell, it guarantees that producers follow strict guidelines regarding production that uses neither chemical fertilizers or herbicides. In fact, I’m quite familiar with ALL the regulations and requirements to receive this vaunted seal of approval, and one of the coolest ones is that if you start an organic concern, you have to wait for three years for the USDA to even consider your land as free from chemical amendments. You have to prove that no adjacent land has chemicals or GMOs drifting over to sully your crops; you have to prove that your seed and amendments are organically-sourced; you have to prove that your water supply is clean and that there is a sufficient barrier between your home (where you might use chemicals) and your grow-op. All of this makes sense to me, even the reams of paperwork and visits from the USDA. If you want the government’s seal of approval.
I thought I did. In fact, all of our farming plans and efforts to date have been strictly adherent to their guidelines, even before we applied. It’s a VERY cool thing to have on your product if you plan on selling, which we do. Here’s the rub: The USDA overall is balls. It is an invasive, big brother, bloated governmental clown circus which is only out for the dollar and is used as yet another yoke around the neck of the small farmer. It is used to bully the consumer, whether child or adult. It is another instance of the government being too big, too invasive, too invested in stealing Constitutionally-granted freedoms rather than servicing the public, for which is was originally intended.
I’m going to give you a few salient examples of the Gestapo-like powers that the USDA has been given, and gleefully exercises.
2010-2012: There is a war on raw milk producers, farmers, and holistic medicine manufacturers. It doesn’t matter that the producers adhere to the letter of the law and FDA/USDA regulations regarding food safety. Here’s a breakdown from the fine folks at NaturalNews (I heart Health Ranger Mike):
“(NaturalNews) The US Food and Drug Administration has a long history of conducting armed, SWAT-style raids on farmers, cancer treatment pioneers and dietary supplement manufacturers. This list, compiled by the editors of NaturalNews, reveals only some of the hundreds of armed FDA raids that have been conducted in the last twenty-five years. (Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/033280_FDA_raids_timeline.html#ixzz1mecpUky9“) (He doesn’t mention the USDA in that blurb, but they’re in the piece.)
Some more of my recent favorites:
10/12/11: State health officials in Utah shut down a private farm-to-table event for allegedly violating USDA regulations. The event was licensed, and the chef adhered to every food safety protocol. The farm owners were forced to pour bleach over the offending meat and produce, in front of one weasly little piece of shit assistant to the inspector. In front of guests, friends and family.
2/2/12: A four year-old preschooler had her home-made lunch taken away and replaced with chicken nuggets that the parent had to pay for. The offending items? A turkey and cheese sandwich and a banana.
I can’t make this shit up.
Given the fact that we’re very much trying to live our lives and grow our crops and raise our animals in an organic, sustainable fashion, and we’re endeavoring to every day get a little further “off the grid,” why on EARTH would we subject ourselves to the power-junkie Nazis of the US government? I am not willing to surrender the sanctity of our private property to any branch of the government, especially one that has shown so little restraint, so little adherence to common sense and decency, and so much willingness to trample our rights and take our money.
I’ll pay the federal and state and local taxes. I’ll pay the licensing fees, where required. I’ll take the food safety courses, if mandated. I’ll adhere to organic practices and perform strict sanitation maintenance. I’ll package our goods with “Organically Grown and Harvested” labeling and provide print-outs of detailed information on our farm practices and sourcing to anyone who wants them. I’ll explain in person at farmers’ markets and CSAs and to our restaurant customers how we come by these organic offerings. I’ll offer tours of our facilities by our customers and potential customers, if asked.
But I won’t give these irresponsible douchepoodles one iota of permission to step on to my property. If they do, it’s “Welcome to the 2nd Amendment of the Constitution.”