A little Satire with a bit of truth wrapped up inside.
A bill watered down by the Virginia House of Delegates called the Farmers’ Right to Breathe Act was rejected by a Senate committee this week.
Claiming that local officials should regulate farm breathing, Senator Frank Fogwash said, “My daddy’s daddy started the farm I inherited long before we started getting tax subsidies allowing me to be here before you today, so I know that real farmers breathe, of course, but I don’t know if this bill applies to real farmers. You know, those people who sell that organic stuff aren’t real farmers.”
Big Farm Insurance opposed the Farmers’ Right to Breathe bill claiming it would have unintended consequences needing study by more lobbyists, Richmond bureaucrats and five “stakeholders” whose identities remain guardedly protected.
Senator Hank Gerrymander said, “If Big Ag opposes this so-called right to breathe, then how can anyone claim that it helps farmers? Would this bill lead to farmers’ filling their silos — or building new ones — with oxygen supplies that could explode?”
The House previously passed the Farmers’ Right to Breathe bill after watering it down by removing what were called controversial constitutional provisions. Delegate Billy Hargus said, “I don’t think any judge has said there’s a constitutional right to breathe, so if localities want to regulate breathing, then people should attend their local government meetings and express opposition or support.”
The watered down bill was passed by the House with a provision that appears to violate Article IV, Section 13 of the Virginia Constitution regarding effective dates. That provision would have allowed Delegates to change their votes for the bill after the 2013 election when their appearance of having principles no longer mattered.
The Virginia Association of Bureaucrats testified before the Senate committee claiming that it is of course the prerogative of bureaucrats to regulate farms, and farmers may obtain permits for breathing after localities ensure that people don’t cluster, which concentrates the expulsion of carbon dioxide, a known pollutant.
Senator Carlyle Harrington of Northern Virginia told FFC after the vote that, “Although I myself have never actually been to a farm, I support the efforts of environmentalists to ensure that people in my district may buy locally grown vegetables at Harris Teeter.”