April 11, 2006
Tag, you're it!
By Perry Willis

Today's Downsizer-Dispatch . . .

Forward to interested friends . . .

Knowledge is power. A government that knows everything about everyone can do anything to anybody. We're about to move a step closer to this outcome.

First came the REAL ID Act, which paves the way for a national identification system. REAL ID cards must be machine readable and could include biometric information such as your DNA profile, your medical history, or a retinal scan. The Department of Homeland Security will determine the details. "Machine readable" could come to mean "trackable" using RFID technology. And if the past is any guide to the future, that is exactly what it will mean.

Now comes NAIS -- the National Animal Identification System. This program, run by the Department of Agriculture, will require any owner of animals, one or more, that could potentially generate a profit of $1,000, to tag those animals with trackable RFID chips. Do you own expensive pure-bred dogs? Get ready to tag them.

Do you grow chickens or pigs for your own family? Get ready to tag them, and comply with complex regulations about what you have to do, and the forms you have to file, if your dogs or chickens or pigs stray from your property.

Can't afford it? Too bad. But don't worry, if you run a small family farm there will certainly be some large corporate agri-business ready to buy you out of your trouble. After all, under the new regulations, the big corporate farms can tag their animals by lot, rather than by the individual, so there are economies of scale that would make it more efficient for big business to own your farm, than for you to own it.

And if that increased economic efficiency would also increase tax revenues, perhaps your family farm could even be seized under the new Kelo interpretation of eminent domain.

Sigh. There's a lot more to NAIS than can be described in a few short paragraphs. There are police-state implications, and corporate-welfare implications, but also connections with international trade agreements that threaten other things you do, like the kind of vitamins you can buy.

A web is being woven all around you. A web comprised of red tape and electronic surveillance. Bureaucrats are already tagging trees in the Pacific Northwest, so how long before they want to tag your kids, and grandma too, for their own good of course, in case they go missing.

But if this goes on the main thing that will be missing is your freedom.

They always promise us it won't happen, but then it always does. Please join us in opposing NAIS, while you still can. Send Congress a message asking them to stop NAIS. You can do so here.

Jim Babka President, Inc.

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