Dredging up Dickensian horrors of child labor, the Obama administration has ordered the Labor Department to apply child labor laws to family farms. The new rules would make it illegal for children to perform a large number of labor tasks that have been performed by farm families for centuries. Traditionally, adults and children alike helped with planting and harvesting in the spring and fall, but the federal government is now determined not only to make this a historical footnote, but a criminal offense.
April 25, 2012
Under the rules, children under 18 would be prevented by the federal government from working “in the storing, marketing and transporting of farm product raw materials” and prohibited “places of employment would include country grain elevators, grain bins, silos, feed lots, stockyards, livestock exchanges and livestock auctions.”
In addition to making it far more difficult for families to work their farms, the new rules will revoke the government’s approval of safety training and certification taught by independent groups like 4-H and FFA and replace them with a 90-hour federal government training course, the Daily Caller reports.
In other words, the federal government will forcibly insert itself in the business of teaching animal husbandry and crop management, disciplines traditionally passed on by families and local communities.
Government apparatchiks will now oversee the business of local farming the same way Stalin did when he collectivized farms and “socialized” production at gunpoint in the Soviet Union. Resistance by farmers and peasants to Stalin’s efforts resulted in the government cutting off food rations, which resulted in widespread famine (the “terror-famine in Ukraine” killed around 12 million people) and millions were sent to forced labor camps.
The Labor Department’s effort to further erode the family farm falls on the heels of an unconstitutional executive order Obama issued last year establishing so-called rural councils.
“According to this new executive order, the Obama administration plans to stick its itchy little fingers into just about every aspect of rural life,” the Economic Collapse Blog noted at the time. “One of the stated goals of the White House Rural Council is to do the following….”
Coordinate and increase the effectiveness of Federal engagement with rural stakeholders, including agricultural organizations, small businesses, education and training institutions, health-care providers, telecommunications services providers, research and land grant institutions, law enforcement, State, local, and tribal governments, and nongovernmental organizations regarding the needs of rural America.
Obama’s plan to make life miserable for family farmers coincides with an effort by the United Nations under Agenda 21. Section one of the executive order mentions “sustainable rural communities,” language right out of Agenda 21. (For more on the draconian aspects of Agenda 21 and the plan to roll back modern civilization under the aegis of “sustainability,” see Rosa Koire’s Behind the Green Mask: U.N. Agenda 21.)
The federal government has recently moved to clamp down on family farms. For instance, last year the Department of Transportation proposed new burdensome rules for farmers. Incidentally, DOT Secretary Ray LaHood holds a seat on the newly created White House Rural Council.
“In Late May, the DOT proposed a rule change for farm equipment, and if it this allowed to take effect, it will place significant regulatory pressure on small farms and family farms all across America – costing them thousands of dollars and possibly forcing many of them out of business,” writes Mike Opelka. “The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), part of the Department of Transportation (DOT), wants new standards that would require all farmers and everyone on the farm to obtain a CDL (Commercial Drivers License) in order to operate any farming equipment. The agency is going to accomplish this by reclassifying all farm vehicles and implements as Commercial Motor Vehicles (CMVs).”
Late last year, House Republicans moved to prevent the EPA from further burdening farmers with a rule that would ban “farm dust.” Outrage in response to the proposed regulation came fast and furious and EPA boss Lisa Jackson was forced to back down as Democrats complained that the government was not targeting small family farms with the proposed regulation.
A concerted effort by the federal government to attack small family farms cannot be denied. Infowars.com has covered dozens of efforts, including the attack on Rawesome Foods in California, numerous efforts by the feds to attack raw milk and dairy farmers (including attacks by the FDA on Amish farmers), and a recent effort by the Department of Natural Resources in Michigan to destroy open-range pig farms.
In addition to attempting to micromanage – and run out of business – family farms through federal labor regulations, the government is trying to insert itself in the relationship between parents and their children.
The ongoing attacks on family farming are not merely misguided efforts by control freak bureaucrats. They are part of a larger “comprehensive plan of action” to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the United Nations to institute “sustainable development,” a philosophy designed to bring humanity under tight control of the global elite.
As George H. W. Bush said on September 11, 1990, the plan is “based entirely on social control mechanisms.” For the elite, controlling food – especially healthy and natural food produced by family farms – is a primary objective in their plan for global conquest.
- Rural kids, parents angry about Labor Dept. rule banning farm chores (mb50.wordpress.com)
The U.S. Energy Department and its Savannah River Site (SRS) announced three public-private partnerships to develop deployment plans for small modular nuclear reactor (SMR) technologies at SRS facilities, near Aiken, South Carolina. As part of the Energy Department’s commitment to advancing the next generation of nuclear reactor technologies and breaking down the technical and economic barriers to deployment, these Memorandums of Agreement (MOA) will help leverage Savannah River’s land assets, energy facilities and nuclear expertise to support potential private sector development, testing and licensing of prototype SMR technologies.
The Energy Department, Savannah River Site and Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) have entered into three separate agreements with Hyperion Power Generation Inc.; SMR, LLC, a subsidiary of Holtec International; and NuScale Power, LLC. The agreements will help these private companies obtain information on potential SMR reactor siting at Savannah River and provide a framework for developing land use and site services agreements to further these efforts.
“The Obama Administration continues to believe that low-carbon nuclear energy has an important role to play in America’s energy future,” said Secretary Chu. “We are committed to restarting the nation’s nuclear industry and advancing the next generation of these technologies, helping to create new jobs and export opportunities for American workers and businesses.”
The Energy Department has taken a number of steps to help jumpstart America’s nuclear industry and ensure that nuclear power continues to play an important role in the U.S. energy mix. As part of these efforts, the Department has worked to advance small modular reactors, which provide an important opportunity for America’s manufacturing sector to make and sell cutting-edge technology. Small modular reactors have the added advantage of passive safety systems, compact and scalable design and lower capital costs.
“We have a unique combination of nuclear knowledge and laboratory expertise, infrastructure, location and much more to make the Site a natural fit for advancing the small modular reactor technology,” said Dr. Dave Moody, DOE-SR Manager. “We are about reinvigorating SRS assets to impact national needs and influence new missions for the future of the Savannah River Site.”
By strengthening information sharing and access to site facilities and technical expertise, these MOAs will help break down engineering and testing barriers to advanced nuclear reactor research and development while providing these nuclear companies with the resources to support effective deployment plans.
Today’s announcement builds on the Energy Department’s work to develop nuclear power as a vital part of America’s all-of-the-above energy strategy:
• The Energy Department announced $10 million in new research funds earlier this month to solve common challenges across the nuclear industry and improve reactor safety, performance and cost competitiveness.
• In 2010, the Department signed a conditional commitment for $8 billion in loan guarantees to support the Vogtle project, where the Southern Company and Georgia Power are building two new nuclear reactors, helping to create new jobs and export opportunities for American workers and businesses.
• The Energy Department has also supported the Vogtle project and the development of the next generation of nuclear reactors by providing more than $200 million through a cost-share agreement to support the licensing reviews for Westinghouse’s AP1000 reactor design certification. The Vogtle license is the first for new nuclear power plant construction in more than three decades.
• Promoting a sustainable nuclear industry in the U.S. also requires cultivating the next generation of scientists and engineers. Over the past three years, the Department has invested $170 million in research grants at more than 70 universities, supporting R&D into a full spectrum of technologies, from advanced reactor concepts to enhanced safety design.
The Memorandums of Agreement announced today do not constitute a federal funding commitment. The Energy Department envisions private sector funding will be used to develop these technologies and support deployment plans. The agreements, and the officials and offices involved with these activities, are separate and distinct from the Energy Department’s Funding Opportunity Announcement for small modular reactor cost-share projects announced earlier this year.
- Dept. of Energy signs agreements to develop small nuclear generators (arstechnica.com)
- The US Government Is Banking on Small Nuclear Reactors for Future Energy [Nuclear] (gizmodo.com)
- SMR developers are racing to the market (theenergycollective.com)
- Carnival of Nuclear Energy 93 (nextbigfuture.com)
- Small, Modular Nuclear Reactors – the Future of Energy? (hardware.slashdot.org)
- Feature: Small modular nuclear reactors – the future of energy? (gizmag.com)
- Department of Energy will fund up to Two Small Modular Nuclear Reactors for 2022 (nextbigfuture.com)
- DOE FY2013 Nuclear Energy Budget Request Makes Some Tough Calls, Not All of Them Good (switchboard.nrdc.org)