Tomorrow, Wednesday (Nov. 17), the lame duck Senate will have a cloture vote on a bill that will create 17,000 new bureaucrats whose job will be to harass America’s small farmers.
The bill is S. 510: FDA Food Safety Modernization Act.
Its sponsor, Demonrat Illinois Sen. Richard Durbin, sells the bill as an effort to ensure the safety of our food supply. But S. 510 is really Obamacare for the food industry because it will vastly expand the already BLOATED federal government by creating 17,000 new bureaucrats through fiscal year 2014 (just for starters), with unspecified regulatory powers over America’s small family farmers and even home gardeners.
Worse still, Campaign for Liberty warns, S. 510 grants blanket authority for federal agencies to impose international guidelines and standards on domestic food producers in the name of “harmonizing all American food production and processes.” In so doing, S. 510 will drive America’s small farmers out of business, to the benefit of Big Government’s Big Corporate Agriculture allies — they of the genetically altered crops and food animals pumped full of hormones and antibiotics — as well as foreign produce and food that already are flooding our grocery stores.
In an interview with GovTrack.us, this is what Liz Reitzig, Secretary of the National Independent Consumers and Farmers Association, says about S. 510:
Senate bill S. 510 is completely flawed. What Senate bill S. 510 does it is creates statutory authority for the FDA to come up with regulations governing all aspects of food production and processing. So whether or not it will affect a home garden or a farmer’s market, we probably won’t see anything immediately affecting those, but once they come up with the regulations and start enforcing we could see a disruption in anything, anything from a farmer’s market to a child’s lemonade stand. Because nothing is explicitly exempted, so they are all implicitly included. So the regulations could very easily include regulations such that they impose overburdensome restrictions on farmers going to market.
I think the intent of the legislation is to give much broader authority to the FDA, and then when you look at the language of the bill, when it gives the authority to the FDA to act on “reason to believe”, that’s giving a lot of power, a lot of control, to one person.
An example of that is there is a thriving and booming fresh milk movement, people who want fresh milk directly from farmers they know and trust. Well the FDA, CDC, and other organizations have clearly said they don’t think anybody should drink fresh milk. If you go by that, they would have reason to believe fresh milk might make somebody sick, and on that basis they could just shut down every fresh milk farmer, everybody who is supplying fresh milk to a consumer because they have that reason to believe. Even if the intent is not explicitly stated as control over all farms, that is what is this legislation and they can use that to impose their world view on everyone.
It’s like writing a blank check to the FDA and saying now come up with the regulations. Once the bill is passed they can come up with whatever regulations they want. Again for them to say we’re going to have regulations specifically for smaller producers, they don’t yet have the regulations so how do we know what they are going to come up with? How do we know if it actually is going to benefit small producers or not? We don’t know, it’s this big unknown. And it’s this big blank check to the FDA who has already been stepping on small farms a lot.
YOUR ACTION IS NEEDED!
Call your Senators and ask them to vote against cloture and let’s kill this new attempt by the Obama/Pelosi/Reid axis of fiscal evil to control even more of our lives.
Toll free to Congress (both houses): 1-877-851-6437
For more, go to Tea Party Nation.
H/t beloved fellows Tina & May.