Federal agents swooped in on Gibson Guitar Wednesday, raiding factories and offices in Memphis and Nashville, seizing several pallets of wood, electronic files and guitars. The Feds are keeping mum, but in a statement yesterday Gibson's chairman and CEO, Henry Juszkiewicz, defended his company's manufacturing policies, accusing the Justice Department of bullying the company. "The wood the government seized Wednesday is from a Forest Stewardship Council certified supplier," he said, suggesting the Feds are using the aggressive enforcement of overly broad laws to make the company cry uncle.
It isn't the first time that agents of the Fish and Wildlife Service have come knocking at the storied maker of such iconic instruments as the Les Paul electric guitar, the J-160E acoustic-electric John Lennon played, and essential jazz-boxes such as Charlie Christian's ES-150. In 2009 the Feds seized several guitars and pallets of wood from a Gibson factory, and both sides have been wrangling over the goods in a case with the delightful name "United States of America v. Ebony Wood in Various Forms."
The ORIGINAL gathering place for a merry band of Three Percenters. (As denounced by Bill Clinton on CNN!)
Friday, August 26, 2011
More Federal Insanity. "United States of America v. Ebony Wood in Various Forms."
Guitar Frets: Environmental Enforcement Leaves Musicians in Fear.
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Yes its part of the MO of our federal "Parasite Overreach". Here in Idaho the land fills had to by federal, Parasite Overreach install scales at a cost of two million dollars to weigh everyone going in and out. Raw milk anyone? I can't help wondering if this is not training to raid everyone how has a record of having gold and silver with the new laws where the dealers must report such buys with a 1099 type from.
Manufacturing jobs are leaving America not because of wages but because of the federal Parasite Overreach. This is a nation where the hard working productive citizens have been enslaved by the parasites to serve them.
They'll take my Les Paul "from my cold dead hands." After I smashed their face in with it.
On second thought, I'd probably be holding my rifle.
Lemme get this right. They can't balance their budget, they loan trillions to other countries without so much as a by-your-leave-from us, bail out faiures and thieves here, fuck up the economy like Hogans' Goat, and play golf while people need jobs, and then seize wood because it MIGHT be gotten questionably? George III looks more benevolent by the day.
HA - I bought some nice chunks of azfelia xylay when I was in Laos. I've made, or had made, several knife handles and handgun stocks and will continue to do so. How the hell are you going to find out if something was done "legally" when you buy it in a furniture store in a third world country? They will laugh at you.
Note to self - get off kiester and have an artisan make the AK furniture I've always envisioned with this extremely beautiful, dense wood before it's too late....
Just remember: there is absolutely no room for ANY cuts in the federal budget. EVERY SINGLE PENNY is absolutely essential, to keep the country from sliding into chaos. Why, without devoted federal servants, savage criminals might get away with such heinous acts as...drinking raw milk, making their own health care decisions, BURNING COAL FOR ELECTRICITY (gasp!)...
I should send this to my Congresscritter and ask him why these fools are still employed.
Can't legislate it, so enact by 'fiat' via the various agencies, then rabidly enforce said 'regulations'... Yep it's just getting better and better! :-(
Just one more example of another "isolated incident".
The problem is that this excuse only works for one or two incidents, before people realize it was part of operational tactics and the intent, all along.
I'm sure we can look to more of these in the future as they become bolder and receive even more support from their courts and the politicians who obviously want them to continue doing these things. Power is intoxicating and who knows, one day they may take a liking to your wife or daughter, and she too, will become a job "perk" or isolated incident.
This is where we are headed, it's only a matter of time folks.
It's going to be interesting to see how many artsy fartsy kumbaya anti-gun guitar players will refuse to surrender their instruments now that the confiscations have begun and maybe, just maybe, develop a little understanding. But, then again, that may be too much to hope for.
Reminds me of an incident in the mid 70s In Wichita, Ks. A local nutcase got in a room in the down town Holiday in (a high rise) and started shooting at people and cars down town. People on foot were cowering in doorways while drivers stopped where they were and crawled up under the dash. One poor guy caught one of the wacko's first rounds in the forehead - instantly DOA - and his car rolled up onto the sidewalk. Meanwhile meter maids were scrambling to write tickets for all the drivers "illegally parked" downtown. They even gave the dead guy I mentioned earlier a ticket parking on the sidewalk. Unfortunately not a one of 'em got so much as a scratch.
The local courts UPHELD ALL of the citations - even the one for the DEAD GUY!!! Seems the city dads were DEAD SET on making sure we were absolutely aware that they were DEAD SERIOUS about nobody parking illegally in downtown Wichita.
I know the cultural revolution in China had far more to do with western influence than material composition of the instruments themselves, but a lot of priceless instruments and family heirlooms were destroyed during that period of political confiscation. The reasons might be different here in American today, but aren't we on the same path? What of those violins handed down through the generations which are at risk of being seized simply because they were made with ebony or ivory hundreds of years ago (at a time when it was legal to do so)? Does anyone really still have a receipt of sale dating back decades or even hundreds of years?
I never thought I'd see the day when musical instruments of any kind were confiscated in this country for any reason. Is it time yet?
Sounds like good fodder for a Saturday Night Live sketch. Nah, their in with the protect Gaia crowd. Monty Python perhaps?
And once again, it is "Law Enforcement" in all its glory doing this. WHEN will it be time?
I wonder when the feds will start having "Guitars for Food Vouchers" programs. Hey everybody...turn in your SG for a Kroger food voucher!
New Scandal at DoJ as Illegal Guitars End Up In Hands of Mexican Drug Lords
"Responding to a Freedom of Information Act request, Justice Department officials admitted that the guitars were part of a complicated sting program know as "Operation Fast and Fretless," ostensibly designed to stem traffic of illegal guitars and amplifiers between the U.S. and Mexico. The multi-agency program - involving Justice, ICE, TSA, EPA, IRS, FDA, Fish & Wildlife, USDA, and the Bureau of Whiskey, Groupies & Hotel Rooms - reportedly encourage border area pawn shops to sell the guitars to known drug kingpins."
Somewhere a museum is in posession of a Colt 1873 SAA with ivory grips once owned by a certain Gen. George Patton. Do you think they have the paperwork documenting the source of that ivory?
What about the ivory in the keyboards of all those vintage Steinway pianos?
Not to mention the ebony in all of the clarinets, oboes, english horns, and bassoons out there.
These cops are generating some serious job security for themselves.
The CEO of Gibson is a Republican donor. the CEO of C. F. Martin is a big Democrat donor, uses the same wood as Gibson, and has not been bothered. Coincidence? http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2011/08/ceo-of-gibson-guitars-main-competitor.html. Tamara K. also notes that Woody Guthrie was a Gibson player..and that this is the world he made.
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