Last August 24, without warning, 30 federal agents with guns and bulletproof vests stormed the Gibson guitar factories in
Can you believe that? This was a SWAT team raid on an American business--this was a police raid with the government agents acting like they were storming the doors of murderers, drug dealers, or dangerous criminals instead of a respected guitar factory in
Growing businesses face a number of hurdles in today's economy. For Gibson Guitar—a company that has created more than 580 American jobs in the last two years—the largest hurdle is the federal government.
The Aug. 24 raid was authorized under the Lacey Act. Originally enacted as a means to curb the poaching of endangered species, the law bans wildlife and plants from being imported if, according to the interpretation of federal bureaucrats, the importation violates a law in the country of origin.
The fingerboards of Gibson guitars are made with wood that is imported from
Nonetheless, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decided to enforce its own interpretation of Indian law, arguing that because the fingerboards weren't finished in
alone, there are over 4,000 federal criminal offenses. Under the Lacey Act, for
instance, citizens and business owners also need to know—and predict how the America federal
government will interpret—the laws of nearly 200 other countries on the globe
as well. U.S.
Many business owners have inadvertently broken obscure and highly technical foreign laws, landing them in prison for things like importing lobster tails in plastic rather than cardboard packaging (the violation of that Honduran law earned one man an eight-year prison sentence). Cases like this make it clear that the justice system has strayed from its constitutional purpose: stopping the real bad guys from bringing harm.
Here's what Mr. Juszkiewicz is the CEO of Gibson Guitar Corp has to say about the government raid on his factory:
Policy makers must stop criminalizing capitalism. This begins by stopping the practice of creating new criminal offenses, or wielding obscure foreign laws, as a method of regulating businesses.
Especially in a bearish economy, entrepreneurs need to be able to operate without the fear that inadvertently breaking an obscure regulation or unknowingly violating a foreign statute could shut down their company and land them or their employees in jail.
These kinds of actions, enforcing these obscure and often unncessary regulations which stifle American business and sometimes force them to go overseas or go out-of-business, end up costing you the taxpayer over $200 billion dollars annually.
The Lacey Act is the product of environmentalist whackos who care more about endangered species than about the livelihood of over 500 workers at Gibson's Nashville factory. If these Gibson employees lost their jobs because of burdensome regulation like the Lacey Act, it wouldn't change the thinking of these environmentalist crazies whose one goal is to destroy the U.S. economy and turn America into a 3rd world country because these environmentalists worship creatures like spotted owls, snail, fish, etc. rather than Almighty God who created us in His image. Their skewed view of the world and the order of creation has placed creatures on the top of the food chain and man at the very bottom.