We have rights. As Americans we have the freedom to make agreements, to make promises, and to bargain with each other for mutual advantage. When we give a promise and receive something of value for it, we can use the courts to enforce those agreements. This is what free citizens do in a free country.
What citizens should not do in a free country is run like helpless children to the government for protection when each new challenge comes along.
Governments are made up of people no more smart or capable than you and me. What they have is rigid, uniform, arbitrary, black and white LAW, and power. People are flexible, diverse, and subtle.
Citizens engaged in working the problem to make our land better cannot be sufficiently anticipated by a rigid code of government regulations, no matter how artfully drawn.
The Founding Fathers understood this so they wrote a Constitution of negative law to limit the power of government and leave men free to live and work. They also knew that citizens in a pure democracy would push for ever more government to the detriment of freedom and our republic. At the planning commission meeting last Thursday, many were there proving the point.
Citizens can and will protect their own interests and their own resources better than government can, and that applies to all issues including: safety, the environment, health, maximum economic benefit, effective utilization, and preservation of all of our resources.
Citizens do this because it’s in their interest to do so. Government is merely a third party with no stake—government is just not as motivated to protect our property as we are.
Don’t give them more power over us. It’s a poor bargain. You won’t get the protection you expect and they won’t ever relinquish the power they take. You will burden us forever with more expensive, unproductive, and arbitrary bureaucracy.
This code of oil and gas regulations presumptively treats every citizen in Elbert County like a criminal. We are not criminals, and we are not merely applicants. We are free American citizens who can write our own contracts and protect ourselves. And we don’t need a ruler to tell us what we can do.
Look how this oil and gas lessor protected his interest. He wrote a one page addendum to his lease that fully protects his interests. This is how adults solve problems responsibly. Responsible citizens don’t run to government planners and clamor in public meetings for 60-page monstrosities of zoning law to provide environmental lawyers and planners with an endless pool of aggrieved litigants.