If Oregon Owns The Rain, Then Who Owns The Air?

By Craig Bannister | July 29, 2012 | 5:50pm EDT

If the government owns the rain and can punish you for using it without permission, shouldn't it be liable for the damage its rain does?

Oregon is sending Gary Harrington to jail for 30 days and fining him $1,500 for collecting rainwater on HIS property – because the state says it has a law that gives it exclusive ownership of all water (including rainwater).

But, if the government owns the rain, shouldn’t it be held responsible for the damage it allows its rain to do? If I had a pit bull and allowed it to go around biting people, I’d be liable.

I’d always thought rain damage was considered to be an “Act Of God.” But, apparently, it’s being redefined as an Act Of Government.

So, shouldn’t the government have to compensate us for the damage its rain does? Every time a hurricane ravages us, shouldn’t the government have to pay anyone who suffered harm? A couple of weeks ago, Virginians lost power for days due to heavy, destructive rain. Shouldn’t the government have to make them whole again?

And, what about the engaged couple who spends months planning an outdoor wedding that’s ruined by a thunderstorm? Shouldn’t the government at least pick up the tab for their honeymoon? And, I can’t tell you how many outdoor barbeques I’ve had cancelled due to rain.

Furthermore, if the government owns the rain, does it also own the air we breathe, too? After all, rainwater is made up of H2O: two parts hydrogen and one part OXYGEN.

If not, then I want in on the air monopoly. If politicians can pass a law giving ownership of rain to somebody, who do I need to schmooze to get a law passed giving me ownership of air? Even an air monopoly in just my home state of Virginia would be nice – but I want in on this.

Or, maybe, the politicians think they’ve already legislated away the ownership of our air supply – to the EPA.

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