Brickbat: All Wet


Michal Bednarek /

Jon Carey says the pond on his 10-acre home near Butte Falls, Oregon, is the best part of the property. Carey and his wife bought the property two and a half years ago. The pond has been there for 40 years. But now the Jackson County watermaster says the pond is illegal. State law gives the county rights to all rainfall, and the Careys have no right to collect it. They have appealed to the local water commissioner, and they have the support of the Oregon Forestry Commission as well as local firefighters, who use the pond as a water source for fighting wildfires. But the watermaster says that would set a dangerous precedent for the owners of all the other illegal ponds in the area.

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  1. Do migratory birds ever use the pond? It could be an opportunity to get different government agencies in a cage match.

    1. the pond is an important source of water for beavers, otters, elk, deer, bear, mountain lion, bobcat, bald eagle osprey, great blue heron, snowy egret, Canada geese and the western pond turtle.

      Fuck ’em, fill it in. Worst. animal. ever.

      1. I don’t mind the geese that visit our neighborhood. I hate the resident woodpeckers that like to use rain gutters for territorial notification.

        1. “Visiting” geese are fine, but once they move in full-time, they’re just giant pigeons that float. They’re noisy and obnoxious, and they crap everywhere.

      2. Canadian geese are good for shooting and that’s about it. I’ve had them prepared several different ways and have never cared for them.

        1. I either slow roast them with a coating of honey and A1 sauce on 250 or smoke them.. I like wild goose and duck. Some people just don’t care for it. Grouse are my favorite. There’s just not that many around SE Ohio any more. Doive is quite good also.

          1. Dove is my favorite. put a piece of jalape?o in the middle, wrap the breast with a 1/3 slice of bacon and grill. Opening day of dove season is like Christmas to me. Absolutely my favorite hunting.

            1. There great on the grill. I’ve done quail that way too. Also good. Then there’s the wonderful ring neck.

            2. The last dove I got cost me three 12 gauge shells.

              *compares cost to .70c / lb chicken*

              I dont shoot at dove anymore.

              1. I’ll admit, it’s not economical. But damn is it fun. I usually average 4 to 5 dove killed per box of shells. Little bastard are hard to hit, especially if it’s windy.

              2. Their tough to hit. My labs always loved dove hunting. I’ve found it good practice for waterfowl and upland bird season. I use a O\U 12 for all my birds. Gotta make my shots count.

                1. Try the Opening ceremony of the Olympics.

  2. When Jon Carey decided to grow medical cannabis, he needed to prove that he had a viable water source.

    Never,ever ask for permission. Dude had 10 acres, and couldn’t grow a little dope on the down. Get a brain, Moran!

  3. A pond that’s been there for 40 years suddenly becomes illegal….but elsewhere, a hollow that becomes a pond from heavy rains suddenly becomes protected wetlands that can’t be drained (thanks to Army Corps of Engineers/EPA/etc) – call the Feds!

    1. Scott Pruitt is going to disband the EPA! Hellllp!!

      1. Scott Pruitt is going to find all these assholes under his authority and transfer them to seal hunting watch in Alaska.

    2. It’s already filled. It probably releases as much as it collects.

      1. They were busted when the pond was listed as the water source of their MJ grow operation permit.

  4. State law gives the county rights to all rainfall

    How did this even become law? What is the legislative history of this? Why would anyone feel the need to write this into law? Why did the rest of the legislature agree to it? Why has it not been discarded?

    1. Dude, it’s oregon, like the most dry state evah. It never rains so ever precious drop has to controlled by the state to make sure wreckers and kulaks don’t hoard it.

      1. Butte Falls, in western Oregon, receives less annual precipitation than Seattle. QED.

        1. You mean the town located along the Big Butte Creek? Don’t tell HM, he mught remind us that the joke doesn’t work when pronounced correctly.

            1. Precipitation averages between 35 and 80 inches (890 and 2,000 mm) annually… The watershed contains the largest groundwater source in the entire Rogue River basin; one major outlet is at Big Butte Springs

              Even cached underground!

      2. Oregon seems like it would be a nice place to live if it weren’t full of Oregonians.

    2. Really,whose bright idea was this? In my area there are live stock ponds and yard ponds all over. Does this mean your breaking the law if you have a pool? Or bird bath? Then there’s gardens and yards sucking up all that sweet,state rain water.

      1. Don’t you get it, in progressive utopia, you are always breaking the law.

        1. +1 Dr. Floyd Ferris

      2. I would venture that it’s also a law that every major new development has to have a detention pond to store the state’s water during heavy storm events. So which is it Oregon?

  5. The only damage this pond is doing is to the commission’s authority.

    1. I’ll bet a woodchipper would do even more damage to the commission’s authority.

  6. State law gives the county rights to all rainfall

    The State does not have “rights”. It has legitimate authority provided by the document that created it’s government. And, as in this case, it has illegitimate power that it wields against citizens.

  7. No one needs a high capacity pond!

    1. We more background checks on these ponds. I nominate Bob Ross.

      1. +1 “Happy Little Tree by the Happy Little Rock”

  8. The commission should really consider what they are going to do about the sun. Right under their noses the sun is stealing their water through evaporation and transporting it to distant states that already have copious amounts! This is such an obvious oversight that I have to assume that the commission is in a corrupt conspiracy with the sun.

    1. we’ll arrest the sun replied the county commissioner…but what about the heat?…we’ll go at night…

    2. +1 Bastiat

  9. State law gives the county rights to all rainfall

    And with great rights comes great responsibility:

    “County, get your fucking water out of my basement!”

    1. “You will be fined $10,000 for illegally storing county water”

      1. “You will face a $1,000 daily sanction for every day that you store unauthorised county water. You will be further penalised by means of fine and subject to criminal prosecution if the water is not discharged by an approved county agency or cronied-up business interest service provider with fixed fee structure. ?\_(?)_/?”

        1. That’s on top of the initial fine.

          1. Not a fine – they’ll just asset forfeiture your house.

            1. Don’t need to do that, just file a tax lien.

  10. Gotta love a govt official who claims someone else is being a sponge.

  11. Get the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers involved. The Feds have jurisdiction over the navigable waters of the US and last time I checked, they’ve interpreted “navigable waters” to include everything that feeds into the navigable waters and everything that feeds into everything that feeds into the navigable waters and so on ad infinitum. The gutters on your house are navigable waters as far as they’re concerned. Hopefully, by the time the Feds and the state get done fighting each other, you’ll be long dead and it’ll be your great-great-great-grandchildren’s problem.

  12. To arms! To arms! The bureaucrats are coming!

    1. Why waste ammunition. Both woodchippers and rope are resuable resources.

      1. That’s a terrible way to treat a perfectly good woodchipper.

  13. Just throwing this out there, but the landowner may have some rights by way of Adverse Possession, which is like squatter’s rights or to account for surveying errors, etc.

    If property is treated as if it were owned exclusively, continuously, and openly for 40 years, at some point, you gain rights to that property. In this case, the Water Commission might at least need to compensate him for taking the pond.

    The other question I have is about whether the previous owner knew there was an action pending by government to seize the pond. If the previous owner knew such an action was pending and sold it to the current owner without telling him the pond was about to be taken, the previous owner may be liable for the loss in value.

  14. “the watermaster”

    Where is Charlize Theron when you need her.

    1. off somewhere impersonating a douchebag…

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