At no time in the five decades of my life have I ever witnessed the current level of oppression exhibited by our federal government on the states and the people. It started with the health care reform bill which in addition to the individual mandate also mandates that states increase the number of people eligible for Medicaid at a cost to state taxpayers of $118 billion through 2023 and creates the Independent Payment Advisory Board, a group of 15 unelected bureaucrats that answer only to the secretary of HHS and wield more legislative power than congress. Then they sued Arizona and Indiana over state legislation enacted to enforce the immigration laws the federal government has failed to enforce. The latest news on this front has been the full frontal attack by the NLRB, first with their lawsuit to prevent Boeing, a private company, from expanding with a new manufacturing facility in South Carolina, a right to work state, and then their latest edict reducing the time period prior to union elections which would stack the deck in favor of the unions.
There was another example which was much less publicized in Virginia. The U.S. Department of Justice filed anti-trust lawsuit challenging George’s Inc.’s purchase of a Tyson Foods poultry plant in Harrisonburg. Tyson, who has struggled to keep the plant afloat, had decided to shutter the plant if the sale was prevented.The lawsuit claimed that the sale would reduce the ability of chicken growers in the Shenandoah Valley to receive competitive prices for their services. It is hard to understand how a shuttered plant – with five hundred pink slips and 121 grower contracts converted to worthless paper – is “competitive.”
After mounting pressure and protest from the Virginia legislative delegation led by Virginia State Senator Mark D. Obenshain and the administration’s declining job approval ratings, the justice department has announced a proposed settlement allowing the sale. In other words the federal government is standing down.
Senator Obenshain put it this way;
“On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Justice beat a partial, face-saving retreat, but not before serving up a compelling example of what can happen when the federal government concludes that there are no constraints on its action, and that its mandate is to tinker, intervene, and meddle in nearly all aspects of the US economy.”
The deal, as announced, includes some concessions from George’s – though mostly
improvements they planned to make regardless and basically allowed the justice department to save face while backing out of an ill-advised, job killing lawsuit.
While this is a victory for the people I wholeheartedly agree with Senator Obenshain’s summary of the situation;
The idea of the federal government telling a business how to operate leaves a
bad taste in my mouth, but sometimes, when the full weight of the federal
government is bearing down on a company, they have to accept the best deal that
they can get. George’s has decided that this is it – and I know that any deal
that helps maintain 500 jobs is a good one for the Valley.