A man plowed his own field, and now the US Attorney’s Office is trying to fine him $2.8 million. What the actual fuck? Thank you for joining me on the fortieth episode of The LAVA Spurt, Plowed by the Feds? This episode is brought to you by Praxis, where you can get a full-time job in nine months making $50,000 a year with no college degree. Also brought to you by Wry Guys t-shirts, the makers of all of the Pax Libertas Productions t-shirts, including for this show. A wry wit for today’s shit.
A lawyer for Duarte Nursery said the case is important because it could set a precedent requiring other farmers to obtain costly, time-consuming permits just to plow.
Anthony Francois, a lawyer for the Pacific Legal Foundation, a libertarian-leaning nonprofit that fights for private property rights and limited government, said, “The case is the first time that we’re aware of that says you need to get a (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) permit to plow to grow crops. We’re not going to produce much food under those kinds of regulations.”
However, U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller agreed with the Army Corps in a judgment issued in June. A trial, in which the U.S. Attorney’s Office asks for $2.8 million in civil penalties, is set for August.
The case began in 2012 when John Duarte, who owns Duarte Nursery near Modesto, Calif., bought 450 acres about 10 miles south of Red Bluff. Duarte was planning to grow wheat on his property.