Friday, March 15, 2013

Tea Party Confronts Morgan Griffith

E-mailed by Patricia Evans, edited for format and spelling:

Congressman Morgan Griffith, 3/14/13

After ignoring repeated requests for private meetings with the same liberty groups to whom he pledged personal access, Congressman Morgan Griffith today made the ambiguous claim to be a 'respecter of private property rights of individuals' in response to The Crooked Road organization's abandonment of the National Heritage Area designation, legislation sponsored by both the congressman and Senator Warner. The NHA has been rigorously opposed by liberty groups throughout Southwest Virginia, the same organizations whose support was sought by Candidate Morgan Griffith in the historic 2010 congressional race.

While property rights advocates consider it a victory that the NHA threat may be laid aside, SAV NRV (Sustain Authentic Values, New River Valley) spokesperson Catherine Turner points to the looming spectre of the HUD/DOT/EPA Partnership Grant that will put all five counties in the New River Valley under one comprehensive plan for Sustainable Development, and take away uses-by-right that rural property owners have historically claimed.

"This was the biggest assault to private property before The Crooked Road NHA. So now, it again gets the top slot as the biggest thing to ever happen to private property in the 9th Congressional District---and one that Congressman Griffith continues to completely ignore," says Turner.
"And now we're even seeing Craig County getting sucked into the Sustainable Communities grant in effect in Roanoke and neighboring counties. There's another HUD grant in Albemarle and Charlottesville; it's all part of the same attack on rural property rights: once Sustainable Development is implemented, the rural land owner won't have any rights, and our land will be devalued. These grants pose the exact same threat that the NHA does, only it's not the National Park Service we'll be answering's HUD, the EPA and DOT.

"You cannot claim to 'respect property rights' and ignore what is happening to your district under these grants," Turner emphasizes. "And you cannot claim that these federal land grabs don't harm property rights. I've documented thousands of victims. "I don't give a dam how Jack Hinshelwood and his Weldon Cooper Center spins it--it's documented fact."
“Critics of the designation have made numerous claims of adverse effects, most notably that Heritage Areas are a threat to property rights,” Hinshelwood said. “The Crooked Road diligently researched these claims and could not find a factual basis for them. The independent and well-respected Weldon Cooper Center researched these claims on behalf of local government and could not find a factual basis for them. We are not aware that critics of the designation have provided anyone with a factual basis for those claims either.” Jack Hinshelwood, Executive Director, The Crooked Road.
For more information contact:
SAV NRV, Sustain Authentic Values, New River Valley

Catherine Turner, a professional chef, food writer and children's book author became an outspoken property rights activist when she was arbitrarily refused a Special Use Permit to develop her dream of building and running a country store on her rural property next to Claytor Lake in SWVA. After two years of architectural concepts and engineering studies--and a good chunk of their life savings invested--the Turners relinquished their dream of an equestrian development. The next year, another country store opened in Draper, with the county's blessing and lots of grant money. The Planning District Commission had been awarded a Sustainable Communities grant, and plans to create "Rural Sustainability Hubs" are underway. The Turners' property, also in the Draper District, is not in the hub.

SAV NRV's mission is to educate SWVA on the radical transformation that Sustainable Development / UN Agenda 21 policies that are underway. "

To which this web site adds that critics of The Crooked Road have provided what appears to be a substantial factual basis for the claim that "areas" managed by the federal government have been "areas" where property rights have been violated. Because my personal e-mail account has been hacked by a spammer in Turkey who, while using my account to send out spam, "updated" it to that hideous Yahoo Neo format, I can't search the appropriate folder for the link to their web site; because their web site uses that unwieldy PDF slideshow format, I can't copy the information and display it here, although I've been invited to do so. And offhand I don't remember the titles of any nonfiction books that document the protests of people whose property has been commandeered to create various federal "parks," e.g. the Blue Ridge Parkway, or TVA lakes and dams.

That's not because there was any shortage of documentation of protests at the time they occurred; it's because the history of protested land grabs is not exactly bedside reading, and tends to accumulate in libraries. Like I personally know a survivor of a Roosevelt Administration land grab, right? There aren't a lot of them out here in the point of Virginia, but there are a few. And I can remember, offhand, a couple of non-scholarly protests that made it into pop culture. Buffy Sainte-Marie's song, "Now That the Buffalo's Gone," was a protest against a land grab. William Armstrong, best remembered for Sounder, wrote a protest novel called The Macleod Place about the land grabs involved in the construction of the Blue Ridge Parkway, closer to the center of Virginia. That's not historical documentation, strictly speaking, but its appearance in pop culture is documentation of what you'll find if you dig.