Dear Representative Spang,
I appreciate your taking the time to reply, but you have misconstrued my previous email. Although you addressed many different aspects of what you, yourself, believe the Water Sustainability Commission (WSC) is planning… little of what you said addresses my concerns. We both agree that water and riparian rights in NH provides for landowners the right to “reasonable use”. “Reasonable use” means a landowner cannot deprive someone else who has water and/or riparian rights to the same source of water.
I find it interesting that we are in agreement regarding these rights, because from here we differ greatly. I prefer to refer to the Constitution and the Rule of Law to ensure the quality of my water. You and the WSC seek for the State to assume control of all water on behalf of the collective – using equal access, equal cost and cleanliness as your justifications. These are two, very fundamentally different points of views and goals.
I believe that it is the people who are the sovereign, and that We, the People, possess unalienable rights that come from our Creator – and not from government. This is an important distinction; Our rights come from God, therefore only a government bent on tyranny denies the people their rights. The basis of my beliefs are articulated in the Declaration of Independence and our U.S. and NH Constitutions, which define the foundations of our freedom. These documents acknowledge and protect our right to life, liberty and property -- using the Rule of Law to enforce those rights.
From the NH Constitution; “All men have certain natural, essential, and inherent rights among which are, the enjoying and defending life and liberty; acquiring, possessing, and protecting, property; and, in a word, of seeking and obtaining happiness.”
The issue here is water ownership. My God given rights vs. State power.
You use a pretext to justify the confiscation of personal property – the fear of water scarcity and reckless behavior of property owners. You have no evidence of either.
Representative Spang, if you feel strongly to forfeit your property to achieve your goals for socialized water distribution and cost, that is your personal choice and I respect your decision.
John Adams warned; "The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. If 'Thou shalt not covet' and 'Thou shalt not steal' were not commandments of Heaven, they must be made inviolable precepts in every society before it can be civilized or made free."
Our founding fathers were brilliant in their understanding of, and warning against, the desires of human nature. Not only do you (and the WSC) covet my water… you justify confiscation by dismissing my ownership of it. As the Chair of the 6-year legislative Groundwater Commission, you said "the deeper you look into this water issue, the more you realize that you can't say ‘it's my well, so it's my water’ the way you say ‘it's my private land’."
This is the Live Free or Die state. Your goals and actions are a direct threat to our most fundamental right… the right to life – as human life cannot survive for more than a few days without water. The deeper I look into this contrived water issue, the more resolute I am in my conviction. It is my well. It is my water. It is my private property.
Maureen Hart, who gave a presentation to the WSC, “Noted that Oregon had spent years figuring out how to implement sustainability and (is) now exporting experiences to China in consulting services.” Oregon water laws declare that all water is publicly owned.
I would expect to hear of this story occurring in Communist China – but here in America? Is Oregon the model and the vision for “sustainable” water laws as you and the WSC seek State ownership of water in NH under the guise of “sustainability”?
Here are just a few excerpts from WSC meeting minutes for your reference:
“Water Laws and Rights: Ensuring equitable allocation and access for social and ecological demand was discussed because it is part of sustainability.”
“Need to develop a collective sense of accountability for a resource so that people comprehend that sustainability can only be achieved with all working together.”
“Need to view water as a whole entity rather than whether it comes from a public system or private well.”
“Water is a state resource that belongs to the people – it needs to be worked on at that level.”
“Another suggestion was the need for a hard look at water rights and water laws in New Hampshire related to groundwater and access to water”.
Regulation of our life sustaining water translates into a direct regulation of our liberties, and reduction of freedom. I am deeply concerned that the WSC would seek the advice of someone who touts the oppressive Oregon Water Laws (that are being exported to China) as a model for New Hampshire. I consider that to be a red flag.
Several states, including Utah, Colorado and Washington now regulate the collection of rainwater.
Thomas Jefferson warned: “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.”
Where do these regulations stop? This is where I draw the line. On behalf of my family, my community and my state. NH is a water rich state as confirmed by the WSC. We currently have a system in place that has provided an abundance of renewable water to the State of NH. Each local community already has the resources and structure in place to manage their water needs, and there are already mechanisms for state help when towns have difficulty with water, e.g. assistance when there is flooding (emergency plan); or droughts (drought management plan); or potential contamination (DES, etc…). There is no need for greater State control.
"If it be asked, What is the most sacred duty and the greatest source of our security in a Republic? The answer would be, An inviolable respect for the Constitution and Laws -- the first growing out of the last." --Alexander Hamilton
I hope you will read through the Commission's writings again with the above in mind, and that this helps.
This story has also been picked up by GraniteGrok.com. Read here.