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(Billings Gazette)   Acre by acre, two billionaire brothers are quietly buying up the state of Montana   (billingsgazette.com) divider line 164
    More: Interesting, Golden Valley, wildlife management, brothers  
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35747 clicks; posted to Main » on 16 Dec 2012 at 4:51 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-12-16 05:56:47 PM
That's 431 square miles, more than half the size of Silver Bow County.

That's 0.4 Rhode Islands.
 
2012-12-16 06:00:29 PM
But how well can those boys dance?
 
2012-12-16 06:01:45 PM
What is the property tax rate on undeveloped (or ranch land) in those areas?

/If their property tax rate is '0', then there's a problem...
 
2012-12-16 06:05:28 PM

Mike Chewbacca: ladyfortuna: It's very very vacant land, other than cows and hamlets. But it's also beautiful country as long as you're not down to your last gallon of gas and desperately searching for a station (no this did not happen to us, but it could have easily).

I was moving from DC to Seattle and driving through Nowhere, Montana when my brother called to say our father had died. I pulled over to the side of the freeway and wept, and then got back on the road because what else was I going to do? An hour later a tire on the trailer blew out. We had no cell phone reception and were in the middle of ranch country. We drove slowly for 30 miles before we hit a widening of the road. Two good ol' boys were able to jack the trailer up (they were used to working with heavy tractors) and got the tire switched out in 45 minutes.

Worst farking day of my life.


My condolences on both. Glad some locals helped you out though; I do find rural residents are usually quicker to stop and offer help than in cities.
 
2012-12-16 06:07:04 PM
Are they planning to become dental floss tycoons?
 
2012-12-16 06:10:00 PM

SlothB77: these guys will be able to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. huge tracts of land teeming with fish and cattle; isolated, low-population location; skilled in fishing and ranching; own lots of guns.


Hahahaha, yeah right. First off, that's prairie and there's almost no water out there. And if there are fish anywhere, they are stocked by the same evil government that is intruding on all our freedoms. And "skilled in fishing and ranching?" Fat farking chance. Every rich ranch owner I've ever heard of up here doesn't do anything except show up at his big house and throw parties for his droogs, while the cowboys, who are paid $1000 a month (and a trailer!), do all the actual work.
 
2012-12-16 06:11:02 PM

Kriggerel: But how well can those boys dance?


Diamond Jim? Is that you?
 
2012-12-16 06:13:15 PM
Hmm... I read it as two bright oil guys who realize that, thanks to the global warming resulting from burning the oil their fortunes have been built on, their native Texas will be all dessert soon. They are buying cheap land further north in the new Texas. I'm thinking of beating the rush and buying in the NWT.
 
2012-12-16 06:13:39 PM

Spiralmonkey: Mark Galvan: What the frack are they going to do with all that land?

My first thought too.


Weren't the righties saying they were going to go into compounds over their election butthurt?

Maybe this is what we're seeing.
 
2012-12-16 06:16:03 PM
I guess they're jealous of the king ranch?
 
2012-12-16 06:18:03 PM

MooseUpNorth: Do you know what happens when large segments of everybody stops spending money?


It interesting that there are two kinds of people.

1. Those that understand money is transactional medium.
2. Superstitious people that think money is a magical store of value.
 
2012-12-16 06:18:15 PM

rustypouch: Are they planning to become dental floss tycoons?


*shakes tiny fist.
 
2012-12-16 06:18:26 PM

nanim: What is the property tax rate on undeveloped (or ranch land) in those areas?

/If their property tax rate is '0', then there's a problem...


North Dakota voters recently voted to retain their property taxes. The reason there was doubt is because the state is fairly swimming in oil and gas tax revenues. Oil and gas revenues that exist solely because of the technology championed and financed by the brothers. Which is to say, they are responsible for much of North Dakota's tax revenue before they pay the first dollar in property taxes.
 
2012-12-16 06:23:20 PM

unlikely: OMGZ people with money buying LAND

STOP THE PRESSES


It's appalling. Almost like free-market capitalism WORKS.
 
2012-12-16 06:28:13 PM

MooseUpNorth: Economies work through the spending of money in a big cyclic web. A web which includes the government. It doesn't really matter who spends the money. It doesn't really matter why the money is spent. Just so it changes hands as often as possible.


No no. It does matter how money is spent. When you pay money, the money circulates. But the actual services and resources are expended. Further economic activity may arises from that, but it's not a sure thing. The services and resources my be wasted, or damage other parts of the economy. or they may increase it.

But the government is in many ways just another large economic unit. It's mostly an insurance company.
 
2012-12-16 06:28:21 PM

sminkypinky: Welcome to the 1%. While you are evicted and starving, they are feeding off the fat of the land.
Time for a goddam revolution.


YEA!

Oh, wait, I'm not evicted nor starving. Back to the football game.

Go Steelers!
 
2012-12-16 06:39:06 PM

RandomRandom: We could also do with a few more tax brackets. The very top personal income tax bracket starts (iirc) at around $380k. We need a million dollar and up bracket, a ten million and up bracket, a 100 million and up bracket, and a billion dollar and up bracket. Even if it just added a point or two at each level, it would be hugely beneficial.


It would barely make a dent.
 
2012-12-16 06:44:40 PM
These threads are always great for reminding me that irrational hatred of rich people by a large group of Americans isn't completely a strawman.
 
2012-12-16 06:45:41 PM
Only thing I care about is what they plan on doing with it.
 
2012-12-16 06:47:25 PM
Ahhem. Meh.
 
2012-12-16 06:51:16 PM

wcvanhorne: Hmm... I read it as two bright oil guys who realize that, thanks to the global warming resulting from burning the oil their fortunes have been built on, their native Texas will be all dessert soon. They are buying cheap land further north in the new Texas. I'm thinking of beating the rush and buying in the NWT.


You mean, like a chocolate eclair? Or bananas Foster?
 
2012-12-16 06:57:00 PM

mark12A: bearded clamorer: It's obvious. They're trying to corner the dental floss market.

Then they can be dental floss tycoons.

Are they going to raise it up, wax it down, put it in little white boxes they can sell in town?


No they'll ship it to China where they can get it waxed down at a fraction of the cost.
 
2012-12-16 07:04:45 PM

Curious: as long as they are fracking their own land and poisoning their own water who cares. yeah the land will lie fallow for a generation or two but it's not like there are lots of folks lined up to use it anyway.


The thing is that groundwater tends to flow - you'd pretty much have to buy up the entire state to ensure you're not poisoning the adjacent ranchers.
 
2012-12-16 07:06:01 PM

LargeCanine: But Lowry, the Wilkses' neighbor at the N Bar, has no problem with the many land acquisitions by his new neighbors and sees the brothers as more friendly and open than the previous owner.

"I figured that was their business," he said of the land buys and rumors of fracking plans. "If they're buying up land, they can do what they want with it."

I wish more people had that kind of attitude.


His tune will change if he starts to suffer ill consequences of his neighbor's activities.
 
2012-12-16 07:06:30 PM

Spiralmonkey: Mark Galvan: What the frack are they going to do with all that land?

My first thought too.



So check the public records for mineral rights associated with the land purchase.
 
2012-12-16 07:08:01 PM
img811.imageshack.us

Right wing extremists. They just think they own it.
 
2012-12-16 07:13:10 PM
Don't know why they want land in Montana.
When the south pole shifts to Kansas, its going to be real hard finding your way to Ohio with a compass.
 
2012-12-16 07:13:21 PM
LetTheButthurtFlow.jpg
 
2012-12-16 07:18:49 PM

Kriggerel: But how well can those boys dance?


FINALLY! Thank you,sir or madam.
 
2012-12-16 07:20:47 PM

phamwaa: wcvanhorne: Hmm... I read it as two bright oil guys who realize that, thanks to the global warming resulting from burning the oil their fortunes have been built on, their native Texas will be all dessert soon. They are buying cheap land further north in the new Texas. I'm thinking of beating the rush and buying in the NWT.

You mean, like a chocolate eclair? Or bananas Foster?


Baked Alaska, silly.

You know because of global warming...badabing.
 
2012-12-16 07:21:07 PM
First you get the stuff... then two rich guys buy me out...
cdn.cosbysweaters.com
 
2012-12-16 07:29:26 PM
Finally got through the BS and found out - not a good thing, if you are into local hunting, etc. These two guys are herding local hunting animals into sequestered bits of land, "allowing" the public to buy permits for hunting on specific bits of land, and considering the history of their fracking biz...it may be righteous but it just ain't hip.
 
2012-12-16 07:31:21 PM
What is really shocking is the real reason they are doing it.

They are planning to offer to relocate the entire State of Israel to the state of Montana in a bid to bring peace to the Middle East.
 
2012-12-16 07:37:11 PM

RandomRandom: We need a million dollar and up bracket, a ten million and up bracket, a 100 million and up bracket, and a billion dollar and up bracket. Even if it just added a point or two at each level, it would be hugely beneficial


No, we need to tax every dollar every time it changes hands - no exceptions, no loopholes. Then when the gov't wants to engage in social engineering, they should do it directly, by grants, publicly. Then we would see change, because the people would revolt. Waitin' for it to happen.

/will be waitin' a loooong time.
 
2012-12-16 07:37:40 PM
Good people, them frackers.
Need to buy some clean land for yourself after you're done destroying the rest of it.
 
2012-12-16 07:38:16 PM
'Twould be hilarious if after buying all that land, they can't do a damned thing with it 'cause they don't own the mineral rights to that land. In Montana, those are two separate deeds (maybe most everywhere else as well, for all I know).

My great-grandfather's old ranch in Montana was sold and resold many times over the decades, but I still own (inherited) the mineral rights to it.

/"Drill, baby, drill", but only on that patch of acreage. Keep the rest of Montana beautiful.
 
2012-12-16 07:42:26 PM

Radioactive Ass: d23: They will be whining about property tax next. You heard it here first, folks.

The only people who get tax breaks on their property taxes are those who negotiate a deal when they are building thing like factories, malls or some other job and\or tax generating venue where they will be making more money for the county\state than what the land sitting as is would have. Usually it's a good deal for everyone involved.


Research has pretty convincingly shown that the net benefit is very negative to communities that hand out tax breaks. It is, however, enormously beneficial to politically connection construction agencies, "consultant" nephews, and council members with reitre-and-hire agreements, and the savings more than make up for the loss from those parasites, so it will go on for the forseeable future. For some reason, usually only the biggest retail businesses that are the most efficient at sucking dollars out of the area tend to get their breaks.

The only tax breaks that are positive are ones that affect the employee taxes, rather than the business taxes, but that only affects employees in states with an income tax. (It can have the side effect of attracting higher caliber employees, as well.)
 
2012-12-16 07:49:45 PM
I'm sure they're going to create oodles of jobs.
 
2012-12-16 07:55:45 PM
As Billionaires, I'm sure they have nothing but good intentions for using that land as they are certainly men of upstanding moral character.
 
2012-12-16 07:56:00 PM

noazark: ... with the exception of a small strangely-shaped portion of the map, in front of which their underling constantly stands.

[yafh.com image 382x225]


What cartoon/movie is that from?
 
2012-12-16 07:58:59 PM
popculturehasaids.files.wordpress.com

"Get Bullock!"
 
2012-12-16 07:59:08 PM
Good. Privatize I Say! Privatize ... EVERYTHING
 
2012-12-16 07:59:12 PM
It's easy to buy land that noone else wants.
 
2012-12-16 07:59:27 PM
have fun payin' taxes on all that land, year after year after year
 
2012-12-16 08:03:15 PM
 
2012-12-16 08:06:16 PM
Pretty obvious they're going to open a huge Disney World...
 
2012-12-16 08:09:16 PM

LargeCanine: But Lowry, the Wilkses' neighbor at the N Bar, has no problem with the many land acquisitions by his new neighbors and sees the brothers as more friendly and open than the previous owner.

"I figured that was their business," he said of the land buys and rumors of fracking plans. "If they're buying up land, they can do what they want with it."

I wish more people had that kind of attitude.


People like that tend to change their minds once they discover that their previously good tap water can now be set on fire due to the contaminants that are introduced by hydraulic fracturing.
 
2012-12-16 08:11:58 PM

Ron Mexico's Revenge: sminkypinky: Time for a goddam revolution.

To stop people from buying land that is for sale?


It's either the government or private entities owning all the land. Which side will you be on in the revolution?
 
2012-12-16 08:12:42 PM
I figure they're just trying to build Galt's Gulch. But missed by a couple of states.
 
2012-12-16 08:14:26 PM

foxyshadis: Radioactive Ass: d23: They will be whining about property tax next. You heard it here first, folks.

The only people who get tax breaks on their property taxes are those who negotiate a deal when they are building thing like factories, malls or some other job and\or tax generating venue where they will be making more money for the county\state than what the land sitting as is would have. Usually it's a good deal for everyone involved.

Research has pretty convincingly shown that the net benefit is very negative to communities that hand out tax breaks. It is, however, enormously beneficial to politically connection construction agencies, "consultant" nephews, and council members with reitre-and-hire agreements, and the savings more than make up for the loss from those parasites, so it will go on for the forseeable future. For some reason, usually only the biggest retail businesses that are the most efficient at sucking dollars out of the area tend to get their breaks.

The only tax breaks that are positive are ones that affect the employee taxes, rather than the business taxes, but that only affects employees in states with an income tax. (It can have the side effect of attracting higher caliber employees, as well.)


[Citation Needed]
\ o /
|
/\


I can see maybe a neutral impact in rare cases where the tax break is equal to the new income taxes (and sales taxes and so on) generated by the new employees however more people working and paying taxes on what they earn brings in more money than people not working and collecting unemployment.
 
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