March 2012

James Stewart was feeling "disoriented" when I caught him on his phone this morning in Los Angeles. He had just been released from a Ventura County jail last evening, finally, on $100,000 bail. "I feel like I just got off an amusement park ride," he said.

The latest news out of Ventura Thursday evening was that a California judge reduced Sharon Palmer's bail to $500,000 (from $2 million) and James Stewart's to $100,000 (from $1 million).

James Stewart and Sharon Palmer spent a fifth night in a Ventura County jail. The two, who are associated with the Rawesome Food Club--Stewart as its owner-manager and Palmer as a provider of milk (via a herdshare since discontinued) and chickens and eggs--are hoping to be released tomorrow (Thursday) during a hearing at which they will request a lowering of their bail.

I didn't fully appreciate while I was sitting in court waiting for Vernon Hershberger's hearing to begin Friday afternoon in Baraboo, WI, that the delay was due to some important negotiations taking place outside the courtroom.

Did Vernon Hershberger dodge a bullet, or did the two prosecutors from the Wisconsin Attorney General’s office shoot themselves in the foot on Friday, when a judge refused to act on a state request that Hershberger be penalized for allegedly violating the terms of his bail agreement?

If Wisconsin dairy farmer Vernon Hershberger goes to jail Friday, he can take comfort that his farm will be well tended to.

First, there is his family, including his wife and nine children. "I would not do what I am doing without having my family behind me," he told about 60 supporters crowded into a "Rights Workshop" organized by his food club members and the Raw Milk Freedom Riders.

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