Hosted By: Nate Mannier

Co-host/Producer: Merle Cox




Average Joes 1400x1400Welcome to our seventh PODCAST! In this episode we discuss the BLM and Mr. Bundy, The LA Clippers owner Mr. Silver, and much much more!




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Cliven Bundy and the BLM:


1. Bundy has been fighting BLM for more than 20 years. The rancher hasn’t paid the BLM’s grazing fees since 1993, and a federal judge first ordered him to remove his cattle from the land in 1998. In July, another judge said the BLM could remove his cattle if it was still on public land by the end of August. Bundy says he owes the government more than $300,000 in unpaid fees, but the government says he owes $1 million, plus the cost of the recent round-up. Either way, Bundy tells the Las Vegas Sun that he won’t pay.


2. The Bundy family has owned its ranch since the 1870s. The ranch is only about 160 acres, which isn’t enough space to sustain the hundreds of cattle that Bundy owns. He insists the disputed land around his ranch belongs to the state of Nevada, rather than the federal government, and he says the feds have no authority in the area. He told the Sun the government is trying to sabotage his plans to someday turn the ranch over to his son.

3. Bundy doesn’t recognize the federal government. Speaking to conservative radio host Dana Loesch last week, he said he believes in a “sovereign state of Nevada” and abides by all state laws, but, “I don’t recognize the United States government as even existing.” (As The Atlantic notes, the Nevada Constitution says a citizen’s first allegiance is to the federal government.)

4. Environmentalists are also slamming the BLM over Bundy Ranch. They’re coming at it from the other side, though, saying the agency has been ignoring its requirement to protect a fragile habitat for desert tortoises. The reptile is native to the Mojave and Sonoran deserts and is listed as a threatened species at high risk of becoming endangered. BLM is required to submit annual reports about threatened species on its land, but hasn’t done so for several years, according to the Center for Biological Diversity. A coalition of environmental groups, led by the Sierra Club, threatened to file a lawsuit against the agency at the beginning of the month for letting Bundy’s animals graze in the tortoise’s fragile habitat.

5. BLM is in charge of 245 million acres of public land nationwide. 155 million acres of that area is available for livestock grazing in the West, and the agency has nearly 18,000 active permits and leases with ranchers in the West. BLM says its objective with public grazing is “to ensure the long-term health and productivity” of the land and environment.
6. The federal government owns more than 81 percent of all land in Nevada. BLM, alone, oversees 68 percent of the state, according to a 2010 report by the Congressional Research Service. Federal ownership of land is heavily concentrated in western states, with the government owning 47 percent of all combined land in the 11 western-most states, and only 4 percent in the rest of the country.
7. Bundy’s supporters have roots in the Sagebrush Rebellion. The battle over federal land-use policy flared up in the 1970s, as a more environmentally oriented federal government began imposing regulations on its vast holdings in the West. Many ranchers accused President Jimmy Carter of using regulations to target states that didn’t support him in 1976 or 1980. In a 1980 campaign stop in Utah, then-candidate Ronald Reagan said offered his support for the Sagebrush Rebellion: “Count me in as a rebel.”
8. Harry Reid was against it then, too. After the BLM returned Bundy’s cattle, the Senate majority leader said the situation in his home state was “not over.” During the original Sagebrush Rebellion, Reid was an outspoken critic, saying there was “very real danger of extremist elements” in the rebellion.
9. The Federal Aviation Administration established a no-fly zone over Bundy Ranch. The FAA placed flight restrictions around the ranch Friday, citing “hazards” in the area. The monthlong restriction bans aircraft from flying below 3,000 feet within three nautical miles of the area. The new restrictions came shortly after the Bundys posted aerial photos of the BLM’s worksite in the area.

10. The Bundys have received more than $2,000 in donations. In addition to more than 1,000 protesters and armed militiamen joining the cause in Nevada, the Bundys set up a PayPal account for donations. In a blog post Friday, they said money was coming in from across the United States and from other countries as well.


Read more: 

The BLM – Under the Wilderness Act, the Bureau of Land Management is responsible for 221 Wilderness Areas with 8.7 million acres in 10 Western States.
In managing livestock grazing on public rangelands, the BLM’s overall objective is to ensure the long-term health and productivity of these lands and to create multiple environmental benefits that result from healthy watersheds. The Bureau administers public land ranching in accordance with the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934, and in so doing provides livestock-based economic opportunities in rural communities while contributing to the West’s, and America’s, social fabric and identity. Together, public lands and the adjacent private ranches maintain open spaces in the fast-growing West, provide habitat for wildlife, offer a myriad of recreational opportunities for public land users, and help preserve the character of the rural West.
As I mentioned above, the feds already own more than 40 percent of the land in 9 different U.S. states…
Nevada: 84.5 percent
 Alaska: 69.1 percent
 Utah: 57.4 percent
 Oregon: 53.1 percent
 Idaho: 50.2 percent
 Arizona: 48.1 percent
 California: 45.3 percent
 Wyoming: 42.4 percent
 New Mexico: 41.8 percent