Home

Guardian’s Wild Horse Meat Story Contains 92% Bull

2 Comments

Photo: Jennifer Maharry

Rated: F

Article Review:

Why You Really Should (But Really Can’t) Eat Horse Meat

the Guardian  –  Jan 09, 2015

Michael Moss’ powerful New York Times’ investigation into the United States Department of Agriculture’s Meat Animal Research Center (“U.S. Research Lab Lets Livestock Suffer In Quest For Profit”) predictably outraged readers. The collective angst came not just because of the center’s ghoulish and inept experimentation; not just because the research animals suffered to boost profits in the livestock industry; but because the public learned that taxpayers had footed the bill — and had been doing so — for fifty years.

Compare that discovery to the recent media attention given to a very similar program, one involving even more animals, conducted to boost livestock industry profits, costing even more taxpayer dollars, and degrading millions of acres of public rangelands in the American West: The Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burros Program (WHB).

The news media regularly covers this program. Articles about wild horses appear daily, in fact. So why is the public incensed over the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Meat Animal Research Center while the WHB program goes ignored?

The difference is in the reporting. Coverage of the Meat Animal Research Center (which we review here) was initiated by government whistleblowers within the research facility. An experienced investigative reporter subsequently spent a year researching the claims, largely through Freedom of Information Act requests. Federal and corporate perspectives were handled with appropriate suspicion.

Coverage of the WHB program, on the other hand, is typically sourced almost entirely from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the industries benefiting economically from wild horse roundups: notably, private ranchers holding public grazing permits (though mining and energy development companies profit, too).

If Moss, in his reporting on the Meat Animal Research Center, had turned to the USDA’s web site and livestock producers to ask about doing research to boost industry profits, would anyone ever know about “easy-care sheep” and lambs left to perish in rainstorms courtesy of unknowing taxpayers? Of course not.

But coverage of the WHB program was dominated by those groups making money off it. David Philipps’ New York Times article (“As Wild Horses Overrun the West, Ranchers Fear Land Will Be Gobbled Up,” critiqued here) and Caty Enders’ Guardian piece (“Why You Really Should, But Really Can’t, Eat Horsemeat”) are two cases in point.

Non-industry sources comprise less than 8 percent of the articles’ collective text. The other 92 percent is all industry boilerplate. Enders’ loyalty to the ranchers’ perspective even creeps into her word choices. Notably, she uses rancher lingo to refer to wild horses, calling them “feral.” Her point of view is clear, and it’s 92% bull.

This kind of source bias would be understandable coming from a reporter for a beef industry trade publication. But Enders is a reporter for a major media outlet.

An over-reliance on federal and industry sources is problematic not just for animals, but for the consumers who eat them (and care about their welfare). Enders’ piece notably fails to answer the two questions posed in her own headline: a) why you should eat horse meat, and b) why you can’t.

One reason why you can’t eat horse meat is that some states ban it outright. The larger reason is that Congress passed an amendment banning inspections in horse slaughter plants, preventing them from opening. These facts are well documented in the media, as this January 17, 2014 NPR article exemplifies.

A bipartisan majority supported this amendment because the drugs horses routinely take are banned in food animals. Furthermore, there is no proper system in place to track these drugs, making it impossible to keep tainted horse meat out of the food chain. As a reporter, Enders should have known these facts. And reported them.

Enders’ suggestion that wild horses would be suitable alternatives is equally misinformed. For one thing, wild horses in BLM holding facilities are wormed and vaccinated (therefore not free of drugs banned in meat animals). For another, Congress prohibits the slaughter of wild horses. As a reporter, Enders should have known that, too.

Why did she not? Simple: industry, whom she relied on for her reporting, doesn’t offer this information. The only place you’ll learn about the intricacies of horse slaughter (and wild horse round-ups) is from advocacy groups: the very people Enders and Philipps gave one word of text to for every eleven it handed to ranchers and the BLM.

rapa das bestas photo_Getty_Miguel RiopaAgain, sources matter. Consider, as a final point, the dramatic photo in Enders’ piece showing wild horses fighting, one with its teeth bared and the caption, “Overcrowding on the frontiers of the American west could lead to a depletion of natural resources for wild horses.”

The photo confirms the article’s bias. The problem is that it doesn’t depict wild horses fighting over depleted natural resources in the American West at all. Rather, it was taken in Sabucedo, Spain during a 400-year-old “horse festival” called rapa das bestas, a macabre ritual in which wild horses are driven down from the mountains, wrestled to the ground to have their manes and tails trimmed, and “corralled into a village where they face aloitadores or fighters in this man vs. animal challenge – minus weapons, just bare hands and hooves.”

There’s a reason why complex topics — such as Moss’ investigation into the Meat Animal Research Center and wild horses rounded up by the BLM — require thoughtful digging and reporting. The alternative — an easy reliance on self-interested federal and industry sources — keeps the public in the dark about the inept, incomprehensible and inhumane things that the government is doing with its money. Journalists should not be abetting that corruption. They should be exposing it.

_________________________________________________________

More

Study: Livestock Grazing on Public Lands Cost Taxpayers $1 Billion Over Past Decade

1 Comment

Information supplied by The Center for Biological Diversity

BLM’s Welfare Ranching Bedfellows come with a huge price tag…

WASHINGTON— A new analysis  finds U.S. taxpayers have lost more than $1 billion over the past decade on a program that allows cows and sheep to graze on public land. Last year alone taxpayers lost $125 million in grazing subsidies on federal land. Had the federal government charged fees similar to grazing rates on non-irrigated private land, the program would have made $261 million a year on average rather than operate at a staggering loss, the analysis finds.

Click Image to Download Full Report

Click Image to Download Full Report

The study, Costs and Consequences: The Real Price of Livestock Grazing on America’s Public Lands, comes as the Obama administration prepares Friday to announce grazing fees for the upcoming year on 229 million acres of publicly owned land, most of it in the West. The report was prepared by economists on behalf of the Center for Biological Diversity.

“Public lands grazing has been a billion-dollar boondoggle over the past decade and hasn’t come close to paying for itself,” said Randi Spivak with the Center for Biological Diversity. More

WAR

2 Comments

strip banner

new-logo25Neal Henderson

“We now live in a nation where doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, universities destroy knowledge, governments destroy freedom, the press destroys information, religions destroy morals, and our banks destroy the economy” Chris Hedges Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist.

____________________________________________

Written On Her Head Mystery Babylon The Great.

Great Britannia the United States of America and just about all of the world’s religions are run on the back of the City which is nothing other than a collection of privately owned banks and corporations only interested in themselves a self preservation society. It has corrupted the whole system from top to bottom, many thousands of innocent men women and children were murdered in cold blood in order to set up the Federal Reserve. It was a Titanic undertaking to accomplish, having to switch the registration plates around, but one way or another, 00 Agents managed to easily pull it off, gold medals for diabolic injustice  should have been given, because without such things, there would not have been enough money. Which is of coarse the filthy root of all evil. To pay for fomenting the onset of world wars 1 and 2. More

TS Radio: Journalist Mike Volpe

Leave a comment

 

painyJoin us this evening January 29th, 2015 at 6:00 pm CST! More

John Holland, Pres. of Equine Welfare Alliance, on Wild Horse & Burro Radio (Wed., 1/28/15)

3 Comments

painy

Wild_Horse_Burro_Radio_LogoJoin us on Wild Horse Wednesday (*SM) , Jan. 28, 2015
More

Kill Buyer Ole Olson trucks 224 stallions to Dennis Chavez, likely into the slaughter pipeline

5 Comments

SOURCE:  ANIMALS ANGELS
Shipment of Stallions to Dennis Chavez 1/15/15
Olson_NMLB Inspection_1_15_2015
Well known Nevada Kill Buyer ships 224 Stallions to Dennis Chavez!

Animals’ Angels has received confirmation that on January 15, 2015, Ole Olson transported 224 stallions to the New Mexico’s largest and most notorious kill buyer Dennis Chavez.  Records obtained from the New Mexico Livestock Board indicate that the agency inspected the 224 stallions and 64 mares at the Los Lunas Feedlot.
While it cannot be confirmed that these horses are indeed a part of the Dann Sister herd, it is possible.  However, regardless of the origin of these horses, it is important to question how these stallions were shipped. The Commercial Transport of Equines to Slaughter Regulations require that every stallion is segregated inside the trailer to avoid fighting and the risk of injuries. Given the fact that Olson shipped 224 stallions, it is unlikely that this requirement has been met.
One can only imagine the chaos inside the trailers with so many stallions packed together fighting for dominance. The risks for injury during slaughter horse transport is always great but given the sheer number of stallions Olson was transporting, the danger for grave and debilitating injuries, not to mention the horrific distress, would have been tremendous.According to the New Mexico Livestock Board’s inspection form, the horses were consigned to Dennis Chavez – we’re all too familiar with his operation, so we know where these horses are potentially headed and the conditions under which they may suffer at his feedlot. While the horses may be sold at his auction, it is also possible that they will end up in Mexico.  It remains to be seen if Chavez will trouble himself with gelding the stallions (a requirement if he wanted to export them as slaughter horses), or if he will ship them straight to Mexico labeled as “work horses”.AA investigators have seen the sad results of Chavez’ clumsy gelding procedures during previous feedlot visits; yet another reason our heart goes out to these poor souls caught in the pipeline. While we continue to keep an eye on Dennis Chavez and his Southwest Livestock Auction for abuses that can be reported to the authorities, we are also going to take measures to hold Ole Olson accountable for the recent shipments. Animals’ Angels has filed a complaint with the USDA and has urged IES to launch an investigation into the true purpose of these transports and the final destination for these stallions.

Handcuffs Leg Shackles and Tasers The New Face of Punishment in the Public Schools

5 Comments

strip bannerFound on:  A Nation Beguiled

By John W. Whitehead

January 26, 2015

In many parts of the country, teachers are viewed as beyond reproach, Cartoon_Picture_Small_Child_with_a_Big_Mouth_Crying_like_a_Baby_Yelling_and_Screaming_in_a_Vector_Clipart_Illustration_110912-011432-384001much like doctors, police officers, or clergy … and, therefore, are rarely challenged about their classroom conduct. In some cases, this means that actions that would be considered criminal if committed by a parent remain unchallenged by law enforcement if they occur in a school setting.”—Senator Tom Harkin, “Dangerous Use of Seclusion and Restraints in Schools Remains Widespread and Difficult to Remedy: A Review of Ten Cases”

Roughly 1500 kids are tied up or locked down every day by school officials in the United States.

At least 500 students are locked up in some form of solitary confinement every day, whether it be a padded room, a closet or a duffel bag. In many cases, parents are rarely notified when such methods are used. More

Older Entries