California’s New ‘Hot Air’ Obsession: Cow Farts

Yahoo! cow (Franco Folini / Flickr / CC / Cropped)
Franco Folini / Flickr / CC / Cropped

Many Americans consider California the “land of fruits and nuts” — and lately it’s hard to argue with that.

First, California leftists want to secede from the United States of America, simply because they don’t like the outcome of one election.

But now — they want to regulate cow flatulence.  Yes, that’s what I said.  Cow farts and burps—now subject to regulation in the most regulated state in the union.

Illegal aliens — yes.  California wants more, and creates a dozen new taxpayer-subsidized rewards for them every legislative session.

Illegal cow farts — no.

It isn’t enough to drive so many businesses and even entire industries out of the state of California to the benefit of states like Nevada, Arizona, Colorado and Texas. The Marxist Progressives who control California (having recently won a  supermajority in both houses), want to penalize those who are left.

They’re starting with dairy farmers — but only God knows who’s next on their hit list.

This obsession with attempting to control the uncontrollable — the weather, and in particular, the temperature — isn’t new.  When I was in 8th grade, and Jimmy Carter was president, Newsweek had an ominous picture on the cover, warning of the looming ice age.

Even though the so-called “science” of global cooling-turned-global-warming has never been able to stand on it’s own — there have been multiple scandals, from manipulation of official temperature data to outright whole-cloth fabrication in the case of the hockey stick graph — that hasn’t stopped California from seizing more and more control over everyday Californians, be they business owners, or in this case, dairy farmers and cows.

As if it wasn’t bad enough to be a dairy farmer in a state like California — where the government, not the marketplace, determines the price at which you can sell your product — now you’ve got to take extra steps to capture the methane gas produced when your cow belches or farts.

If this sounds like an April fool’s joke, remember — this is California.  They’ve already handicapped California egg producers with a law, Proposition 2, that specifies the size of each chicken’s individual living quarters. The result was higher egg prices—and more greenhouse gas production.

In order to comply with the law, egg producers had to build each hen their own little heated “condo” instead of a communal cage.  Dramatically more energy is now being used to produce eggs in California as a result of this law since the hens are no longer able to huddle together and benefit from natural community body heat.

So, the question I’m sure on everyone’s minds is—How do you do this?  How do you capture the flatulence which is gas without inadvertently catching the solid waste excreted?

Do you create some kind of “cow hoodie” to capture the errant gases that escape from both ends?  Just imagine trying to do that with your family dog.  Not likely to happen even with the smallest of creatures.  And these animals easily weigh 600-1,000 lbs.

And how exactly is the government going to regulate compliance with this new dictate?

Hire more regulators to sneak up on non-compliant dairy farmers, creating more outlaws out of law-abiding citizens?

That’ll just drive more dairy production out of state — and leave more of California’s fertile farmland brown and barren.

As the largest agricultural state in the country, there’s a lot at stake.  California’s expansive San Joaquin Valley is home to the most fertile farmland on the planet.  This is the food basket of the nation, if not the world.  Making changes here is not the same as it might be with the Central Valley’s celebrity cousin up north, the Silicon Valley. It’s not just a keystroke.

Making a living by producing food with the government-induced water shortage — and the tens of thousands of regulations on everything, from how much dust you kick up while driving a tractor, to how much shade you must provide farmworkers — just became harder.

Maybe the Democrat Supermajority will change the Golden State’s motto from “Eureka” (meaning, “I have found it”) to:

“Welcome to California.  Now go home.”

In order for California to secede from the union, 38 states would have to approve.  After bone-headed moves like this latest law regulating cow flatulence, maybe the legislatures of all those states will simply decide to kick crazy California to the curb with a unanimous “Good Riddance” vote.

Tim Donnelly is a former California State Assemblyman.  He can be contacted on Twitter: @PatriotNotPol


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.