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Carol Anne Costa: Contradictory Conservatism, the New Politics

Thursday, April 17, 2014


As I drop my check in the mail on its way to the Hartford Connecticut IRS Bureau, I always have mixed feelings; I am fortunate, I live in the best country ever, which costs money and taxes are… well, taxes... and frankly no one relishes parting with their money. But, off it went to help pay for the things I do believe in like housing, nutritional support, highways, the military, education, energy, and a little will go to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to maintain the large bundles of land and open space owned and managed by the US government. I am a proud 47-percenter doing my part as an American.

So when the goings on in Mesquite, Nevada started to heat up, I listened. And, holy cow there is a hell of a beef going on. The rancher versus the government, the Stetson adorned Tea Party icon in a standoff with local, state and federal law enforcement or as known in some circles as the “jack booted thugs.” Or as I call them, officers of the law simply doing their job. So when the lines were drawn in the desert sand the so called “conservatives”, separatists, and secessionists emerged camo clad and gun toting from the shadows and encampments. They have happily adopted this man and his cause like a newborn baby and stand ready to protect, reinforce and pay homage to its father Cliven Bundy.

Patriot, Moocher or Law Breaker?

Fully armed and ready to fight the tyrannical government. You know, the tyrannical government which afforded Mr. Bundy every opportunity to prevail in a court case that dates back at least 17 years. The original dispute began in 1993 when Bundy refused to pay bills to the United States government or grazing fees to feed his cattle on the federal lands of the ‘Bunkerville Allotment”. In 1998, by order of the United States District Court- District of Nevada, Bundy was prohibited from grazing his cattle on the land. His defense and theory of the case was rejected by the court and from then on Bundy completely ignored the ruling and continued graze his cattle in trespass without paying fees. The case was pressed on within in the judicial system, all the while tolling grazing fees which were left unpaid to the tune of a million dollars.

Finally, in July of 2013, on a motion for summary judgment before the US District Court-District of Nevada the case came to conclusion with the government prevailing, as the court ruled and ordered in part:

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the United States’ Motion for Summary Judgment is GRANTED.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that defendant Cliven Bundy’s Motion to Dismiss is DENIED as moot.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Bundy shall remove his livestock from the New Trespass Lands within 45 days of the date hereof, and that the United States is entitled to seize and remove to impound any of Bundy’s cattle that remain in trespass after 45 days of the date hereof.

That seems pretty clear to me. Additionally, in a case which churned through the legal system for 17 years, Mr. Bundy certainty cannot claim he did not get due process. Which brings us back to the beef in the desert being held up by fake conservatives everywhere as government overreach. Please stop, Mr. Bundy has lost his case. Mr. Bundy owes the grazing fees and Mr. Bundy and the fake conservatives are using this as a way to make false proclamations of tyranny. And then the smell of that red meat wafting through the airwaves provides a temptation that cannot be overcome by the opportunistic and disingenuous politicians. They pick up the cause, with loud megaphones in hand hoping and praying to rile up the base. Enter, Mike Huckabee as he weighed in on the Bundy situation stating in part, “Bundy is part of a dying breed of independent cattle ranchers who once populated most of the open spaces of the Western United States. His family harkens back to a simpler time when Americans raised their own food… and before the government had military-style police teams to deal with protesters. When I was growing up, that was something you’d see in Soviet-ruled countries, not the United States.”

Stand down, Governor. Did you notice the armament of the protesters or read the court ruling?

He speaks with forked tongue

Let’s compare the Huckabee’s positions on Bundy versus Immigration. It seems that Governor Huckabee is staunch in his “uphold the law” stance on immigration. In October of 2007 Huckabee stated in part, “We need to make it clear that we will say no to amnesty, and no to sanctuary cities, and no to the idea that there can be some complete ignoring of the fact that our laws have been broken.”

Let’s get this straight, when it comes to people who enter the country illegally the position is; the law, is the law, is the law. But, when it comes to what Huckabee deems a rugged, independent cattle rancher who made and continues to make choices in direct contempt of United States Court rulings and orders, the law is the law… not so much. I did not get the memo that when it comes to rules, if you are a rugged individualist with a long family history you get a pass.

Cherry picking laws are never a solid position rather it is picking sides for political gain and opining outside the rule of law which side has mitigating circumstances and which side does not, sorry it doesn’t work that way. This is merely an attempt to paint the government as tyrannical and overreaching in the face of overwhelming proof of due process. The irony of this entire episode is the utter disrespect and contempt of the rule of law and Constitution that some claim to revere. This is not conservatism it is contradiction.

Bundy had his day in court. He lost. He is now a law breaker and in my view, it is that simple.

Carol Costa is a public relations and community outreach specialist; she has experience in both the public and private sectors. She is the Chairwoman of the Scituate Democratic Town Committee and has extensive community affairs and public relations experience. She previously served in the Rhode Island Judiciary for nearly 17 years. Carol also enjoyed a successful development stint at the Diocese of Providence as Associate Director for Catholic Education and is currently a public housing manager. Her work has been published in several local outlets including GoLocal, Valley Breeze, The Rhode Island Catholic, and Currents Magazine.


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And yet the BLM gave all the cattle back and went home. Not part of the agenda though to mention that.

Funny how she sees someone who actually contributes to society as a moocher but shes not writing articles about welfare, food stamps, section 8 housing, medicaid etc.

Liberals have a selective mind process that allows them to ignore some things but jump on others seeing no link between them.

Comment #1 by Jim D on 2014 04 17

I agree with you on one part of this article, Ms Costa. The law has been established and fighting it in court would be a waste of time and considered 'moot'. Therefore, the rounding up and deporting of illegals occupying the housing, school space, and benefits meant for citizens of this great country instead of squatters, should take place immediately, just like you said.

As far as Mr. Bundy goes, remove the fees and penalties and give him one last chance to pay his grazing fees retroactive from 1993. He's made his point and lost. It's time he put on his big boy pants, paid the grazing fees like everyone else, and do the best he can to get the law changed. The west just isn't as wild as he wishes it was.

Comment #2 by RI Taxpayer on 2014 04 17

LMAO RI Taxpayer!!

Comment #3 by lupe fiasco on 2014 04 17

None of this would have happened if Mr. Bundy had just made paid his proper political tribute (campaign contributions) to Senator Reid and cut cut in the good Senator and his family in the profits. That would have been far less than the grazing fees, I'm sure. Now the Senator and his family can share in the profits coming from the solar farm to put on the same land because the Chinese were smart enough to pay tribute.

Comment #4 by John Ward on 2014 04 17

Good John!.. Costa must have missed that detail in her research.

Comment #5 by LENNY BRUCE on 2014 04 17

It's important to be focused on the goings on in Nevada and the law is the law..but it's what's behind the law that gives me pause..frogs? and solar panels? or a powerful senator and his son's profit ambitions.and how many ACA laws have been blatantly broken by Obama,and nobody SAY'S A WORD! Maybe you should investigate that Ms. Costa.

Comment #6 by LENNY BRUCE on 2014 04 17

Cherry picking??? Pot calling kettle???

Comment #7 by Max Diesel on 2014 04 17

Um what about Al Sharpton, he owns 1.9 million in taxes? What about the fact that Major De Blasio pays below 10% on his taxes? Oh and lets not get started on the Senate Majority leader and how he makes his money.

Coastal elites like yourself continually mock flyover country while eating steak and eggs that come from those very parts.

One last part: housing, nutritional support & education are not to be found in the US Constitution, cherry pick that.

Comment #8 by Silence Dogood on 2014 04 17

Yes, Bundy has been a squatter on public lands and legally has no right to graze his cattle there. But you have to consider the show of force by the BLM against one rancher as scarily excessive and as selective enforcement of the law.

As RI Taxpayer points out, we have millions of citizens of other countries illegally squatting here in the US and sucking down services -- yet ICE has been instructed by the Great Leader Obama and Nearly As Great Leader Holder not to enforce existing immigration laws.

Please explain.

Comment #9 by Art West on 2014 04 17

art west says it all.....selective enforcement of the laws...

like having irs target the tea party and the left groups are not.

the libs just can't respond when you start to give them facts.

Comment #10 by john paycheck on 2014 04 17

I guess the author's opinion would be different if it had to do with saving the piping plover, or some other "PC" issue. It's also quite convenient how she skipped over Sen. Reid's involvement in obtaining an "exemption" from the BLM for the Chinese endeavor. I guess that's Convenient Liberalism!

Comment #11 by Walter Miller on 2014 04 17

Love your last comment, Silence. I'd also add that owning land isn't one of the enumerated powers/rights of the federal government either.

Comment #12 by Ben Algeo on 2014 04 17

The newly minted right-wing hero and "victim" Mr Bundy is still "free"
to appear on Fox News,the Limbaugh, Beck and Savage Comedy Shows and all the other professional "victim" outlets that the righties are so enamored with. We all know how righties just love to play the victim card ...LOL
Sammy in Arizona

Bundy has been stealing from all of us for 20+ years. He belongs in jail, not on Fox News,

Comment #13 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 04 17

Yep, Sammy, let's remove the squatting rancher from federal land and let's remove the other squatters, the 11 million (at least) illegal aliens, from US soil as well. Deal?

Comment #14 by Art West on 2014 04 17

Sammy the right would play the victim card if it didn't reside at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

What do you think that Maddow, Matthews and all the other idiots on MSNBC/CNN have been doing for 6+ years?

Comment #15 by Silence Dogood on 2014 04 17

What political party brought us WACO, Ruby Ridge, the forced "repatriation" of the little Cuban kid to the "Worker's Paradise" and now trashing of Bundy over a turtle which is no longer endangered (and a bunch of solar panels which are along with certain "profit centers" which favor the contemptable LIAR, Harrry Reid. If a private company tried this "redevelopment at the point of a Federal gun" the lefty screaming would never stop, so just get Dirty Harry and the BLM involved to do your dirty work. Doesn't it follow that with 80% of Nevada land in "Federal: hands, Dirty Harry the LIAR would be the guy to see?
The utte CONTEMPT the left has for individual Americans has never been more accurately displayed. Whatother kind of weasel would trash Bundy's pens and water system, kill his prozed bulls, and then back off like the cowards they are because the "graphics" might get a bit too "inconvenient"? The guy's ranch is surrounded by SOLAR PANELS, owned by those PRIVATE CPORPORATIONS the "liberals love to hate, but whose side are the liberals on THIS TIME? Follow the MONEY.

Comment #16 by G Godot on 2014 04 17

Miss Costa FYI the Gov-Rev Mike Huckabee pardoned 1033 criminals, THREE times as many as the previous THREE Governors COMBINED = to 1 pardon for every 4 days of his terms in office. He pardoned Maurice Clemmons TWICE who after his second pardon found his way to Washington State and murdered-executed 4 police officers. Now the loony and reckless Rev Huckabee is Mr. Bundy's most ardent supporter devoting an entire week of his Comedy Show to the crook Bundy

99% of ranchers who use government land pay their rent, and on time.
Bundy and Huckabee's actions are an insult to those honest patriotic folks
Sammy in sunny and warm Arizona ...90 degrees today..

Comment #17 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 04 17

So COSTA pats herself on the back so hard she dislocates her shoulder because she "contributes" to "nutritional aid" but if it wasn't at the "behest" of the IRS and the politicians who pull the iRS strings I'll bet she wouldn't give a DIME out of charity. Bullslip, plain and simple
for which she wants an "attagirl" and a little pink ribbon. ROFLMAO.

Comment #18 by G Godot on 2014 04 17

The lefty lickspittles don't like BUNDY because he stood up to them and became an "underdor". What Bundy did is a form of PROTEST, Costa, and as I recall, Hillary the Crone once shrieked at the top of her quivering lungs...."We have a RIGHT to PROTEST this administration". Cuts both ways, doesn't it?

Comment #19 by G Godot on 2014 04 17

Selectively enforcing the law. The Democrat way.

Comment #20 by Jim D on 2014 04 17

Not one of the Bundy supporters here, mentioned the fact that he has not paid his rent IN TWENTY YEARS
That 99% of patriotic ranchers pay their rent,(and believe me the vast majority of ranchers out here in the wild west are self-described "small government conservatives")who don't want a FREE RIDE like the "welfare queen" Mr Bundy

Sammy in Arizona

Comment #21 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 04 17

Yup, selectively. It's OK for the "administration to IGNORE immigration law, in fact ORDER it ignored, and OK to ignore parts of the "you'll know what's in it" healthtax abortion, but THAT RANCHER in Nevada, HE threatens the security of the entire union...go GET HIM. What he is a threat to is LYin' Harry Reid's crime family making a profit on something. So CONGRATS on paying a few dollars in TAXES, COSTA, I'm sure the "Nutritionally Deprived" worship you.

Comment #22 by G Godot on 2014 04 18

I see Sammyboy the one trick pony, the one track railroad, the one note samba, the one "man" band, the one way street is back with his bag od delusions. Sammy hero Charlie Wrangle hasn't paid HIS rent in a while, but that's OK, right?

Comment #23 by G Godot on 2014 04 18

25 million illegals like Aunty Onyango collecting food stamps, welfare, medicaid, Section 8 and whatever else our taxes go to support yet one rancher finds a NEW tax from 1993 impedes on his freedom having ranched there, the family, since 1870.

Take the illegals out and hundreds of billions in taxes will disappear.

Comment #24 by Jim D on 2014 04 18

Carol Costa writes “So when the lines were drawn in the desert sand the so called “conservatives”, separatists, and secessionists emerged camo clad and gun toting from the shadows and encampments.” One could easily envision this written as “ So when the lines were drawn in the rocky soil the so called “conservatives”, separatists, and secessionists emerged homespun clad and musket toting from the shadows and encampments.” The real odd thing about the BLM (Redcoats?) use of overwhelming force is that the BLM represents a government that will not effectively seal the border to illegal immigration but will go to the mat to protect a desert tortoise or is it Rory Reid’s investments that are being protected. After 17 years of legal litigation it is reasonable to ask why BLM acts so forcefully now? Or should we ask why the government (Crown) has decided to rigorously enforce this law when it seems the our own Attorney General says he has wide discretion in which laws he will or will not enforce. Or should we ask is it reasonable to use more armed force in Nevada to reign in one independent man than we use in the Ukraine to reign in in one cowboy. It may well be that Cliven Bundy is in violation of the law you cited but does armed enforcement in this manner pass the common sense test.

Comment #25 by Michael Byrnes on 2014 04 18

Sammy you still haven't commented on your man Al Sharpton and the 1.9 million he owes in taxes?

Comment #26 by Silence Dogood on 2014 04 18

Here's an article with insight into why the BLM suddenly went berserk on Cliven Bundy. Dirty Harry Reid, his son, and numerous other high-level government goons are itching to get rich by covering the desert with solar energy farms -- and the land that Bundy's cattle are grazing on is part of the scheme:


Comment #27 by Art West on 2014 04 18

I'm sorry the story is broken down once again in an us versus them slug out. Debate is always good. But never do I see comments now that they degenerate down to the Right versus the Left. But even that's OK but you guys get so venomous.. It's very discouraging. How can you begrudge someone their views when you have views of your own?

Being too steadfast in your opinion causes you to stagnate. You never move, you never learn. I am smart, but rarely entirely right. How can I be? I see only from my window.. Where I may see the horse's but from my window, you see his beautiful face from yours..

I bet if most of you met, without the chasm, you'd actually like each other.. I have friendly differences with my friends.. and really, we are all connected, all here to make a difference.. which we can with spreading the hate the is very much destroying us..

Comment #28 by Gordon Powell on 2014 04 19

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