I go away for a week and what happens? All hell breaks loose in my home of Boston and environs, and it becomes the news center of the world as a horrible example of urban terrorism in action.
For a long time, I have argued that the state and federal judges hearing food rights cases are living on a different planet than the people. The judges nearly always come down entirely on the side of the regulators.
An unlicensed organization like a food club is not only distributing “contraband,” but a “controlled substance,” in the view of a Minnesota prosecutor fighting to prevent dismissal of three misdemeanor food allegations against farmer Alvin Schlangen. In other words, if licenses aren't purchased and regulators involved, food is no longer just food, it is in the same realm as oxycontin or morphine.
I've been devoting a considerable amount of time and energy to reporting on the sometimes tedious ins and outs of the upcoming trial of Vernon Hershberger.
First, the Wisconsin prosecutors pursuing raw milk farmer Vernon Hershberger went after jury nullification, and convinced a judge to instruct jurors in his upcoming trial they can't side with the accused farmer if they disagree with the laws he is accused of violating.
Six weeks in advance of the criminal trial of Wisconsin farmer Vernon Hershberger, pre-trial maneuvering moved into high gear Tuesday.
You wonder what sitting in jail for four months--all for running a private food club--does to a guy. You wonder what it does to the people around him who were supposedly watching his back.
On Monday afternoon, I took a 40-minute drive to Terri Lawton's Oake Knoll Ayrshires farm in nearby Foxboro, MA, to pick up a Thanksgiving turkey.
What is the essential ingredient enabling farmers and food club operators to successfully resist the seemingly endless government assaults and incursions on private food arrangements?