Wow! Property Rights restored?

When and how did we, the ordinary working-class citizen, adopt the belief system that government regulations are bad for us? We didn’t believe it in the 1970s when middle class prosperity was growing. Yet by the dawn of the 21st century most people identifying themselves as conservatives have become believers of this corporate-sponsored myth.
We’ve been sold a false bill of goods. Corporations and the powerful lobby groups representing the richest of the rich had the money and resources to bombard us with this myth until we embraced it as our value.
I have attended Alberta Surface Rights Association meetings where much time is spent discussing abandoned toxic well sites, pushy land agents, polluted drinking and surface water, corporation’s expropriation rights, the industry-bias Alberta Surface Rights Board, inadequate compensation, private property rights, and water wells being damaged by fracking.
Yet those attending these meetings are often the same ones who support right-wing political parties that demonize government regulations.
Karen Johnson, Acting Property Rights Advocate, said in her annual report that the current land use legislation is geared towards facilitating oil and gas development.
She would be the first Advocate not to lose her appointment by making such a public statement. She goes on to suggest that Alberta property rights framework (i.e. regulations) needs to be modernized.
“Often a landowner has no choice but to tolerate the activities of an operator even when rent has not been paid for years”, wrote Johnson in her annual report. “A landowner should be able to impose meaningful penalties such as eviction for non-compliant operators.”  Wow, property rights restored!
Lax regulations on any corporate-dominated industry are simply another tax-funded corporate handout. When all is said and done, private citizens always turn to the government to bail them out when corporations stop paying the bills and leave environmental messes on private property.
Freedom and democracy requires the government to play the vital role of providing a level playing field. Fair and appropriate regulations ensure a functioning market economy which supports free enterprise as it protects people, living things, property rights and the environment from corporate abuses.
Next time a politician carte blanche says regulations are bad, ask which ones he/she is specifically referring to and why?
Surely most landowners would wholeheartedly agree with Advocate Karen Johnson and applaud any changes made to strengthen regulations protecting our property rights.

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