Your Tax Dollars Squandered by Obama’s BLM
Here’s a $70-80 million-dollar-a-year welfare program sure to bring out the wild beast in every taxpayer, regardless of religious or political affiliation. Private accommodations for unwed mothers, fathers and their offspring? Check. Free food? Check. Free contraceptives, sterilization and medical care? Check. Check. Check.
Before you go accusing Obamacare of promoting immoral behavior at taxpayer expense, let me clarify a few things: The program got started under the Nixon administration; its recipients have been protected by law since 1971; and it’s brought to you by a government agency usually associated with allowing large oil and mining companies to despoil public lands without paying either you or me or the rest of the public much for the privilege.
I’m speaking, of course, of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), which manages 245 million acres of public land under the Department of the Interior.
And the “beneficiaries” of this spending program? Well, that’s in dispute. The BLM says it’s wild horses and burros. Wild horse and burro advocates and quite a few members of Congress, however, disagree. To them, the mustangs and burros are nothing short of pawns being zeroed-out—contrary to the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971—to benefit ranchers, hunters, mining and energy companies.
About the only thing the two sides can agree on is this: 45,000 wild horses that used to roam free on public lands are now living in short and long-term holding pens where some will remain for the rest of their lives unless they are adopted or sold.
It’s not every day you find out that more wild horses and burros are being held in pens by the BLM than run free on public rangelands—and that you are picking up the tab. But that, in fact, is the state of things today, thanks to the BLM’s “Wild Horse and Burro Program.”
This is how the BLM manages wild horses and burros, which roam 179 separate herd management areas (HMAs) scattered over 10 Western states (although half live in Nevada). This equates to 26 million acres —a little more than 10% of the total land overseen by the BLM.
The purpose of the Wild Horse and Burro Program, according to the BLM, is to keep horses healthy and rangeland healthy so that others can also use it (think recreational users, cattle and sheep ranchers, and, of course, mining and energy companies seeking grazing, water and mineral rights on the land the horses and burros have roamed for hundreds of years).
The BLM accomplishes this via “gathers,” which is a rather gentle term for mass round-ups involving low-flying helicopters, government trap sites and mass equine pandemonium.
The purpose is to remove horses that the BLM has determined are in “excess” of Appropriate Management Levels (AMLs), which is the optimal number of animals that results in a “thriving natural ecological balance” on public lands and “avoids range deterioration,” according to the BLM Web site.
The scheduled “gathers” take place between July and March of every year in temperatures ranging from below zero to more than one hundred degrees…(CLICK) to continue
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- Contraceptives For Wild Horses Are Just What The Government Ordered (forbes.com)
- Salazar, Obama’s BLM Stick It to the Wild Horses, Burros and the American Public (rtfitchauthor.com)
- BLM Appoints Another Slaughter Supporter to Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Public Outraged Over BLM’s Anti-Horse Appointee on Wild Horse and Burro Board (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Video Update: Wild Horses in Court (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Judge Gives Wild Horse and Burro Advocates Bittersweet Ruling (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Federal Court of Appeals Sides With the Wild Horses (rtfitchauthor.com)
- The Shame of the BLM (rtfitch.wordpress.com)