Recently, I have received a great number of questions from people regarding whether or not they are required to actually answer the overly invasive USDA Census of Agriculture. Mary Zanoni wrote about this in 2007 and spoke with a USDA representative who stated that although they “have the power” to fine people, they had never actually fined anyone for failing to answer the census.
My contention is that there is no Constitutional provision whatsoever to require you to enumerate your farm products and/or livestock and equipment to the Federal government. If you don’t take their “grants” or subsidies, they truly have no standing to require that you answer their “census”….But that isn’t how they see it.
Here is an excerpt from a rather lengthy article that Natural News did on this issue. Please educate yourself and make your own decision about whether or not you can be legally compelled to answer their “survey”.
“People have good reason not to trust the government with their private data and personal farm details. In an age when the DHS is arming to the teeth while refusing to answer questions about why it’s buying enough ammunition to wage a 20-year war with the American people, we are wise to distrust government promises from any federal agency, including the USDA which routinely conspires with Monsanto.
It’s nobody’s business how many chickens or goats I’m raising
I raise chickens and goats, and it’s nobody’s business how many I care for. The USDA says that everybody with backyard chickens is a “farmer” under their control and therefore must fill out this form or face fines and a possible personal visit by government agents.
The USDA itself admits all this, saying:
Even if you do not believe you qualify as a farmer. You may be surprised to learn that a farm is defined as any place that produced and sold, or normally would have sold, $1,000 or more of agricultural products during the Census year. Many people who do not think of themselves as farmer actually meet the definition according to the Census. If you own horses, backyard chickens, large urban gardens, etc., you may qualify as a farmer.
Thus, by their own admission, even if you do not produce any food whatsoever, the mere act of living on a piece of land that COULD produce food makes you a farmer! If you have a “large urban garden” you must spy on yourself for the government!
If you refuse to fill out the form, the USDA will send government spies to your property to confront you in person. In their own words:
“For those who do not respond by April 5, NASS will begin following up by telephone and personal visits.”
Add yet, even though you are threatened with being visited by government agents for failing to fill out the form, the USDA admits their own website doesn’t even work much of the time and loses the information you’re trying to fill out:
We are experiencing intermittent connection issues and are working to resolve them as soon as possible. We understand that some respondents have lost their connection or received an error screen that does not allow them to return to the information they already entered. We greatly apologize for this inconvenience and we hope to have the problems resolved very soon. (SOURCE)
Furthermore, you are not allowed to answer any question with, “I don’t know.” As the USDA explains:
NASS does not provide an option for respondents to select “don’t know” because your best estimate is always better than “don’t know.”
Of course, the government can always imprison you for providing inaccurate information, so the mere act of attempting to fill out the form automatically makes you a criminal for reporting inaccurate financial data. It’s a catch-22: Refuse to fill out the form, and you earn a visit from government agents along with possible fines. Choose to fill out the form, and you incriminate yourself with possible felony violations for “lying to the government.” This is the crime that sent Martha Stewart to prison, by the way.”