The real reason the EPA wants to regulate puddles and ditches

The EPA has promulgated rules to regulate waterways as small as potholes.  The EPA is supposed to have authority over "navigable" waterways, ones deep enough for a boat to drive on.  The theory behind the Clean Water Act of 1972 was that if a company on private property discharged pollution into a body of water that touched on other private properties, that was a harm that was being transmitted to other property owners, and thus it was justified to regulate what the property owner was putting into the water.  This makes perfect sense, even from the perspective of private property rights.

The Obama administration announced new protections Wednesday for thousands of waterways and wetlands, pushing ahead despite a fierce counterattack from powerhouse industries like agriculture, oil and home-building — and their supporters in Congress.

On its face, the Waters of the United States rule is largely a technical document, defining which rivers, streams, lakes and marshes fall under the jurisdiction of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers. But opponents condemn it as a massive power grab by Washington, saying it will give bureaucrats carte blanche to swoop in and penalize landowners every time a cow walks through a ditch.

The rule is meant to make it clearer which waterways EPA and the Corps of Engineers can oversee under the 43-year-old Clean Water Act, which covers “navigable waters” such as the Mississippi River and Lake Erie but is vague on how far upstream protections must go to keep those water bodies clean.

The final rule ensures protections for tributaries that have physical signs of flowing water, even if they don’t run all year round, and ditches that “look and act” like tributaries, said Jo-Ellen Darcy, the assistant secretary of the Army for civil works.

So, for example, the government could regulate a dry stream bed, in addition to ditches of water.

What is really going on?  Liberals at the EPA are not totally unlike doomsday cultists.  They believe that the acts of man are slowly destroying the Earth.  The original mission, of protecting other property owners from proven contaminants, has been left by the wayside in pursuit of the larger, more theoretical cause of protecting the Earth.

A puddle or a ditch filled with water on a property certainly won't harm anyone outside the property.  But the EPA wants to regulate it because it feels that without guidance, a private property user will do something with it to harm the Earth.  For example, a private property owner might want to demolish a pothole, or a ditch, to build a commercial or residential building, one that could use electricity, increase consumption, and further "global warming."  By extending its control to puddles and even totally dry areas where water once flowed years ago, the EPA can prevent development and further its global warming ideology.

That's what it's all about.

Unlike a situation where the government buys land outright, there will be no compensation for these restrictions, or "regulatory takings."  It's simply one more restriction on private property rights, and one more restriction on our individual liberties.  But with media propaganda like the Huffington Post, which had a giant photo accompanying the article showing a small child drinking from a water fountain, it's likely that the uneducated masses will only applaud this latest diminution of their liberties.

This article was produced by, the conservative news site.