Left In Speechless Anger.........
John A. Quayle
blueoval at SGI.NET
Fri Jan 7 15:16:36 MST 2000
The revealing story of a rancher and the national debt Special Report By
David Morgan, The Asheville Tribune Case History: Hage v. United States
After years of successfully ranching in California, Wayne & Jean Hage (she
is now deceased) purchased a large cattle ranch in Nevada, Pine Creek
Ranch, in the spring of 1978. The acreage involved is approximately 752,000
However, as it is mostly desert land, the land's ability to support cattle
is far less than might be supposed from its size.
Located in the high desert mountains of central Nevada, the remote
operation seemed an unlikely place for a war that would rock the very
foundation of federal land management agencies. Wayne purchased the
operation from the well-respected Arcularius Brothers who sold the ranch
because the regulatory pressure by the U.S. Forest Service had become
unbearable. Since Wayne had always been able to work with the agency, he
believed he could resolve problems that might occur. Wayne soon learned the
only way he could satisfy the Forest Service was to allow them to
confiscate his property.
One of the first incidents that drew the line between Wayne and the Forest
Service revolved around a critical spring that Wayne owned. Situated close
to the Forest Service Ranger Station in Meadow Canyon, the district ranger
decided they would pipe the water from the spring, through a newly
installed $50,000 water purification facility, into their cabin.
During a Congressional hearing, regarding Federal land acquisitions that
had been done without State or Congressional consultation, Rep. John
Shadegg asked Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt to provide Congress
with a list of other lands that were being considered for further federal
acquisition, Babbitt sternly responded, "No." After a stunned silence, the
secretary added, "I don't mean to be disrespectful." However, Babbitt told
the Committee that if they did not cooperate, he would ask the President to
"use his power" to get more lands with or without their approval.
Wayne learned of this after the project was complete, and rightfully
objected. He explained that if they needed his water, they could make
appropriate arrangements. They refused to cooperate and would not
acknowledge that he owned the water even though he held two court decrees
affirming his water right. Wayne even held a field hearing where the state
water engineer acknowledged Wayne's ownership and the Forest Service's
illegal confiscation. But, still today, the Forest Service has maintained a
fence around the spring so that cattle and wildlife cannot drink, and the
water is still being piped into the ranger's cabin.
Because Wayne questioned the Forest Service's actions, the Forest Service
began an unbelievable retaliation campaign. In a 105-day period they sent
Wayne 40 certified letters and personally visited him 70 times, each time
citing him in violation of a bureaucratic regulation. Wayne had to respond
in writing and take corrective action to each one of their allegations, no
matter how trivial. In fact, most, if not all, were wild goose chases or
violations the Forest Service themselves had created.
Some of these charges stated Wayne was not maintaining his drift fences.
In order to comply with their rules, Wayne would check and mend if
necessary the fences in question. One of these incidents involved sending a
horse and rider to the top of Table Mountain to ride the 20-mile fence
line. After doing this, the rider found only one problem.
There was one staple missing. The Forest Service had dutifully marked it
with a blue flag.
Also, among these charges were 45 accounts of trespass where Wayne's
cattle were allegedly found in the wrong location. For every one of these,
Wayne would send a crew of riders to locate the cattle and attempt to
comply with the regulations. Often, there were no cattle to be found,
leaving Wayne to wonder if there ever were. Also, on several occasions
there were eyewitnesses who watched the Forest Service employees move
Wayne's cattle into trespass areas, and then immediately cite him for the
Over the next eight years he filed three administrative appeals, and won
all three. They cost him over $150,000 in attorney and consultant fees, not
to mention the countless hours, personal resources, and lost income also
Twice, his pickup was shot at while he was close by, a not so subtle
warning. His wife and children were run off the road personally by the
Even though he won every case, the agency would create new regulations
that would wear Wayne down, force him to expend his time and resources
fighting their new regulations, and eventually run him completely out of
business. The final straw came when the Forest Service confiscated at
gunpoint over 100 head of his cattle. Armed with semi-automatic weapons and
bulletproof vests, 30 Forest Service riders confiscated his cattle in July
"We got the land and the mineral rights away from the Indians, and we
said, oh, we'll make a deal, we'll have a nation-to-nation relationship
with you, and we will provide for the education and health care and housing
of your people;"
- President Bill Clinton, July 12, 1999, Remarks to the National Academy
Foundation Conference in Anaheim, California.
Although they had no legal justification for their actions, they took the
cattle, handed Wayne a bill for their cost of gathering the cattle,
transported the cattle to a sale yard which refused to auction the stolen
cattle, and eventually the Forest Service held their own private sale and
kept the proceeds.
The confiscation did not go quite as planned, however. They needed to
infuriate Wayne to the point that he would also come armed and give them
the excuse to eliminate Wayne altogether. Wayne came armed, but with a 35
millimeter camera. Just more evidence for the case he knew he would have to
September 26, 1991, after being forced to sell every cow he owned in order
to comply with federal regulations, Wayne filed a landmark takings case,
Hage v. United States, for the regulatory and physical taking of his ranch.
Criminal Desperation A year later, the same agency filed two felony
charges against Wayne for clearing scrub brush from his legally owned
right-of-way. Although the Forest Service knew he was not in violation and
admitted this on the record later, they also knew filing criminal charges
against him might force Wayne to drop his takings suit. After loosing the
case at jury trial, Wayne prevailed before the Ninth Circuit, overturning
the felony charges against him.
(See a complete timeline by clicking here.)
What's It All Really About?
In a recent radio interview on WTZY (880AM) in Asheville, NC, Hage spoke
about the true nature of the case. What he said was that basically all of
this has to do with our national debt.
Excerpts from WTZY interview:
"During the Civil War we accumulated $2.8 billion worth of debt which the
North owed mainly to the House of Erlinger in London and the House of
Rothchild in Paris, who had financed both sides in the War. We couldn't pay
the debt, so for the first time in our nation's history they decided to
collateralize that debt with the mineral estate of the Western lands and
Alaska. During the late 1800's we were able to internalize that debt to
where we owed it to ourselves.
In the 1960's the general teaching of Economics 101 was that we shouldn't
worry too much about our national debt as we owed it to ourselves, and
hence it wouldn't have to be paid off. Besides all that gold, silver, gas,
oil and other mineral rights out west more than adequately collateralize it.
"...This exchange of land, mineral rights, commercial properties, and
natural treasures between the Untied States and the State of Utah is the
largest such land exchange in the history of the lower 48 States. The
exchange will help capitalize a long-neglected State school trust by
putting it on solid footing and allowing it to pay rewards to the children
of Utah fro generations to come. The Untied States will obtain valuable
land, thus allowing it to consolidate resources within the Grand
Staircase-Escalante National Monument, the Goshute and Navajo Indian
Reservations, and the national parks and forests in Utah. I especially
wish to thank Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt and Kathleen McGinty,
outgoing Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), for their
contribution to this major achievement."
- President Bill Clinton, October 31, 1998 speaking about H.R.
3830, the "Utah Schools and Land Exchange Act of 1998.
But during the initiation of the Great Society and the Vietnam War we
began once again to borrow from overseas, as we didn't want to tax
ourselves enough to pay for what was needed. We began to "externalize" our
debt, a fatal mistake.
Well, when we began to externalize our debt heavily, Charles deGaulle of
France said, "I don't think you fellows can redeem your dollar debt with
gold." We said, "Oh, yes we can!" So he said that he would rather have gold
and began to raid our Treasury. When Nixon became President, he was faced
with this mess and had to close the gold window; we were running out of
gold. We, in effect, were running out of collateral.
What Nixon did next, and what stunned a lot of folks, was to set up the
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and we began to pass massive
environmental laws. And for what real purpose? All of them have had one
effect collectively, whether at the Federal, state or local level. The one
thing they all do is that they effect the transfer of private property out
of the hands of private individuals and place that property into the hands
of government. Now what is that all about?
Well, when we ran out of gold and, in order to keep the foreign interests
from cashing in their bonds and notes and imploding and destroying the US
economy, we had to show them that the resources of the US adequately
collateralized their debt. In order for it to be properly colleralized, we
had to show them that US citizens and US interests would not be developing,
drilling and mining those resources. The effect of this was to
disenfranchise American citizens of access to their resources for the
purpose of making their resources available to the international financial
interests that hold the debt of the US. Indeed, at the present time, about
40% of all our debt is held by and owed to foreign interests.
Look at the mines. Where I live, in Nevada, we have major mines all around
us. At one time they were all owned by US citizens. But now the only
mines here that operate are those held by those countries that own the debt
of the U.S. If you or I discovered a major gold deposit, neither our kids
nor we would ever live long enough to mine one shovelfull of it. All the
rules, regulations, and laws would drive us under.
We would have to sell out for nothing to the government or to a foreign
entity, who would find their ability to mine it would be rather easy.
(Editor's note: The recent seizure by President Clinton of over $1 trillion
dollars worth of high grade coal in Utah to establish a "park" was settled
by the US government paying the owners merely $14 million dollars for
research and development costs of the coal. See story on Page 28 of The
Asheville Tribune, print edition.)
Another little known but important fact that should be remembered is that
treasury bills and debts held by foreign interests are secured while those
held by US citizens are not.
Little by little, our entire form of government is being reversed.
A fundamental tenant of economics is that all wealth comes from the land;
every bit of wealth originates in the land. The cornerstone of a truly
free society is the ownership of private property by the people. In such a
society the people own the means of production. In a totalitarian society,
the opposite takes place. There, the government owns the land, the wealth,
and the means of production. They, in effect, rent the land to the people.
"As President, I have worked very hard to honor tribal sovereignty and to
strengthen our governement-to-government relationships. Long ago, many of
your ancestors gave up land, water, and mineral rights in exchange for
peace, security, health care, education from the Federal Government. It is
a solemn pact."
- President Clinton, Remarks to the Conference on Building Economic
Self-Determination in Indian Communities, August 6, 1998.
And what this means is that in a free society where the people own the
land, the government has to come to the people for its operating budget
- for tax dollars in order to operate. The government has to listen to
what the people have to say. That is the essence of a free society.
In a totalitarian society where the government owns the resources, they
don't have to go to the people for funds to operate.
Our government today owns over 40% of the resource base of the U.S.
(Shaded areas of map above.) The corporate U.S. government has come to
have its own assets and is having to listen less and less to its citizens.
And it is attempting to get more and more property under the guise of
environmentalism. If you really want to find out who is really behind all
this, follow the money of who is behind and invests heavily in the
environmental entities. It is big money, and comes from powerful interest
groups from all around the world. A couple of excellent books I would
advise you to read are Trashing the Economy and Undue Influence by Ron
Arnold if you really want to find out who the real powers are. They can
both be obtained from Stewards of the Range in Idaho; their phone number is
Now, as I have said, that if laws protecting private property can be
weakened, the value of the property declines. As government regulations
increase, the productive capacity of private property decreases and the
value of the property itself is reduced. Government ownership of and
regulation of the lands and resources of a nation have never in history
provided for a free society, nor for a productive one.
(Editor's note: Even today in Russia, after the recent "democratic"
revolution, the government owns all of the land. The Russian citizens
cannot own land in Russia.)
Taking productive resources and lands away from citizens under the guise of
"protecting" the environment is simply a method by which the government
steals power for itself.
"Finally, the bill includes an unjustified transfer of millions of dollars
of mineral rights to the State of Montana. I intend to use my line item
veto authority to cancel the dollar drain on the (U.S.) Treasury that would
result from this unwarranted action." - President Clinton, November 14,
1997, Statement on singing the Department of the Interior and Related
Agencies Appropriations Act of 1998.
Karl Marx considered the elimination of private property key to the
establishment of a socialist government. There was good reason behind this
premise. If people had no value left in their property that value must be
in the hands of government. The terms property rights and property control
are synonymous. Property rights are the ability of the individual to
exercise control over his property. It is only through the right to
control the use of property that the individual can make the property
produce value or wealth. If regulation or law transfers control over one's
property to the government, then the ability of the property to produce
wealth is also transferred to the government. Marx was right. The
elimination of private property is essential if socialism or communism is
to supplant a free society."
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