Horse News

“You Sound Like a F**king Bitch!”

By Vickery Eckhoff as published on her blog

“you’re a horse advocate, you’re a horse advocate”

I have a new post on Grand Opening of Horse Slaughter Plants Foiled Again. You can read it here.

Vickery EckhoffThe topic may seem obscure, but it’s probably my most important writing to date: exposing false reporting by the Associated Press in 16 different articles (as of this writing) that have, for a year and a half, made their way into every mainstream media organization in the U.S., misleading the public on critical facts about horse slaughter just as two and possibly three plants get closer to opening in America’s heartland.

I started tracking these errors across the media landscape in June, 2012 as they started appearing in a variety of mainstream news sites. As of yesterday, I picked up these same recurring errors in two new AP stories that have appeared on all the networks, in The Christian Science Monitor, Bloomberg, Huffington Post, Reuters, and countless online news sites. I’ve also picked up false reports in The New York Times, on NPR, and other news organizations that have a high standard of accuracy. The AP’s stamp was on all of them.

I approached the AP back in June of 2012, then again in April, and steadily from May onward, inquiring about errors I found and seeking correction.

The first person I spoke to was the AP reporter who has become the voice for Valley Meat for the American Press—Jeri Clausing. I called her again 10 months later.

Ms. Clausing did not take kindly to my inquiries. On my second call, during which I politely inquired as to her source for figures on horse overpopulation that I knew to be incorrect, she wouldn’t let me get a word in.  She kept repeating, “you’re a horse advocate, you’re a horse advocate” despite my having offered my credentials as a journalist who had published extensively on and the Huffington Post (I have since been published in Newsweek), on the topic of horse slaughter.

Upon my strong objection to being spoken to in such a rude manner, Ms. Clausing responded: “You sound like a fucking bitch.”…(CONTINUED)

Click (HERE) to read the rest of this enlightening story and to comment on Vickery’s blog

32 replies »

  1. Well, I Guess This Confirms The Fact That AP is Just A Bunch O Hacks that Run a National Newswire. The Lack Of Professionalism Is Horrible. If America Uses This Rag To Set It’s News Standard, then This Country Will Always Be Misinformed… Thanks Again To Vickery for Calling Them Out. AP is No News Wire.. It Is More Like ThE Enquirer. Just More Scandal For Ratings..


    • It doesn’t surprise me that Jeri Clausing is out of Albuquerque – the bias seems to stem from the inherent hard-headedness that permeates this state, as well as the ease with which people here can be “influenced” – even federal judges – would it be helpful to get a change of venue for the federal law suit – or will the appeal process work better – who knows how many judges or others in the court system & press in New Mexico can be “influenced” (politically, monetarily, etc) to find in favor of the horse killers?


  2. Thank you so much for your research. Horse abuse and neglect go UP when horses are looked at as livestock going to slaughter, instead of companion animals. Horse abuse, starvation, neglect, are CRIMES. WE don’t solve crime by opening horse slaughter plants. Horsemeat is just bad business.


  3. Vickery, thanks for not only bringing the truth to you readers, but also exposing Clausing’s extremely rude and unprofessional actions and Dunn’s attempt at intimidation (not to mention his lack of basic spelling knowledge!). As for AP, our local paper (Farmington Daily Times, NM) is packed with their so-called “news”, and barely covers the community anymore. It was “home-town” before a Texas conglomerate bought it. Now it’s a rag – just a vehicle for advertisers. The Editor wasn’t happy when I said that to his face!


  4. Geesh! How long before newspapers and news stations STOP citing AP?!? If AP can’t get horse slaughter right, what other reporting is being trashed?

    I give Vickery extra points for journalistic TENACITY and personal integrity; too bad AP doesn’t possess the same collective.

    As an Investigative reporter, like Ms Eckhoff truly is maybe a deep dive into the life and finances of the B-caller should be in order.

    Droppin’ the F-bomb too, at work? Yikes! I truly hope she doesn’t own animals, especially equines; seems to have anger management issues.


  5. Did Ms. Clausing get her journalism degree from a matchbook cover? Her lack of professionalism is breathtaking and the implications of corruption in this ongoing issue are becoming more and more transparent as time goes by.


      • Denise after years of Nationwide and being forced to use Farm Bureau–I finally got my insurance changed. NO MORE FARM BUREAU!!!!! What a huge relief. When I was told to go ahead and switch my insurance–my first question was–are you associated with Farm Bureau? Nope. That was more than enough reason for me to switch. YYYIIIIIPPPPPEEEEEE!


  6. Readers and advocates need to read the entire blog post. The outrageous and obscene intransigence by AP is not surprising but jaw dropping based on Eckhoff’s repeated attempts to demand a correction.


    Wow! What persistence with intelligent, FACT based presentation.

    Well done Ms Eckhoff.

    Go read the entire post, seriously important.


    • The editor chose not see what Vickery was talking about. She kept stonewalling her. Instead of saying something like–Oh I see what you’re talking about and we’ll fix it–it was defense after defense for their writer. Even had the editor called the writer on her lack of journalism and had her fix her facts in future articles–Ms. Clausing has yet to do any of that. Now AP is made to like those supermarket rags that are only good reading the bathroom…



    ” I have come to the conclusion that this is exactly what it was intended to do – intimidate the public”
    Atonement (excerpts)

    “We need good, scientific input………input beyond the emotional –something we can actually use in preparation of the plan

    Renewable Resource Manager
    BLM Las Vegas Field Office
    Las Vegas Review Journal
    by Keith Rogers, 7/08/06

    It was this quote in the Las Vegas Review Journal’s July 8, 2006 story that changed my life and launched me into researching the Wild Horse & Burro Program. The purpose of the article was to cover BLM announcing their intentions to remove over 1,000 wild horses and burros from the Southern Nevada area and frankly, I was shocked at the sheer numbers they intended to remove.

    I had grown up in a rural area of Southern Nevada where wild horses and burros were part of the landscape throughout all my “stomping grounds” for many years. We also had horse companions for several years, as did many of our neighbors, and I loved nothing more than to spend time exploring the vast, empty landscapes with my friends.

    Yet as I grew up and grew away, so did the wild ones, gradually disappearing one herd at a time. Busy with getting on with the business of life, jobs, relationships and adjusting to “city life”, over time their disappearances slid into the background as necessity forced a change in my priorities as it has done for so many of us.

    It was that Review Journal article that woke me up, reminding me how much I loved them, caused me to reflect on how long it had been since I had seen them and I wondered – how could there possibly still be 1,000 wild horses and burros still left in our area?

    At that time, I was intimidated by that quote and looking back, I have come to the conclusion that this is exactly what it was intended to do – intimidate the public from getting involved. It almost worked on me too and I swear, I sat in front of that article for what seemed like forever trying to decide if I would merely turn the page or answer the call of the wild ones embedded so clearly between the printed lines of BLM’s announcement.

    Emotional responses, input and connections definitely have their rightful place within the scheme of things and if we refuse to ever consider what our hearts say, we begin a downward descent on a dangerous and slippery slope indeed. Just look at the Nazi philosophy of considering human beings as nothing more than livestock – to be bred and “utilized” as efficiently as possible for “superior qualities” (which of course they defined for us) – qualities lacking even the slightest considerations we attribute to the heart but instead glorified performance based machine-like goals to the exclusion of all else that help define the essence of what it means to be “human”.


    • Bravo, Louie. Your life sounds fairly similar to my own, including the jolt of awareness in later life.

      I’m reading your words Nov. 9, the anniversary of Kristallnacht in 1938, a mere 75 years ago. One could wish we sentient ones could someday prove it.


    • I’ve been meaning to post this someplace but kept forgetting. In case anyone hasn’t seen it, or still holds that all life other than human is somehow less valuable, please read The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness released in July 2012 by eminent scientists from around the globe.

      Here’s a link to the conference which unveiled it:

      And here is the declaration, perhaps the signature proof of evolution of human consciousness. I feel it is important to post this on Nov. 9:

      The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness*
      On this day of July 7, 2012, a prominent international group of cognitive neuroscientists, neuropharmacologists, neurophysiologists, neuroanatomists and computational neuroscientists gathered at The University of Cambridge to reassess the neurobiological substrates of conscious experience and related behaviors in human and non-human animals. While comparative research on this topic is naturally hampered by the inability of non-human animals, and often humans, to clearly and readily communicate about their internal states, the following observations can be stated unequivocally:
       The field of Consciousness research is rapidly evolving. Abundant new techniques and strategies for human and non-human animal research have been developed. Consequently, more data is becoming readily available, and this calls for a periodic reevaluation of previously held preconceptions in this field. Studies of non-human animals have shown that homologous brain circuits correlated with conscious experience and perception can be selectively facilitated and disrupted to assess whether they are in fact necessary for those experiences. Moreover, in humans, new non-invasive techniques are readily available to survey the correlates of consciousness.
       The neural substrates of emotions do not appear to be confined to cortical structures. In fact, subcortical neural networks aroused during affective states in humans are also critically important for generating emotional behaviors in animals. Artificial arousal of the same brain regions generates corresponding behavior and feeling states in both humans and non-human animals. Wherever in the brain one evokes instinctual emotional behaviors in non-human animals, many of the ensuing behaviors are consistent with experienced feeling states, including those internal states that are rewarding and punishing. Deep brain stimulation of these systems in humans can also generate similar affective states. Systems associated with affect are concentrated in subcortical regions where neural homologies abound. Young human and non- human animals without neocortices retain these brain-mind functions. Furthermore, neural circuits supporting behavioral/electrophysiological states of attentiveness, sleep and decision making appear to have arisen in evolution as early as the invertebrate radiation, being evident in insects and cephalopod mollusks (e.g., octopus).
       Birds appear to offer, in their behavior, neurophysiology, and neuroanatomy a striking case of parallel evolution of consciousness. Evidence of near human-like levels of consciousness has been most dramatically observed in African grey parrots. Mammalian and avian emotional networks and cognitive microcircuitries appear to be far more homologous than previously thought. Moreover, certain species of birds have been found to exhibit neural sleep patterns similar to those of mammals, including REM sleep and, as was demonstrated in zebra finches, neurophysiological patterns, previously thought to require a mammalian neocortex. Magpies in
      particular have been shown to exhibit striking similarities to humans, great apes, dolphins, and elephants in studies of mirror self-recognition.
       In humans, the effect of certain hallucinogens appears to be associated with a disruption in cortical feedforward and feedback processing. Pharmacological interventions in non-human animals with compounds known to affect conscious behavior in humans can lead to similar perturbations in behavior in non-human animals. In humans, there is evidence to suggest that awareness is correlated with cortical activity, which does not exclude possible contributions by subcortical or early cortical processing, as in visual awareness. Evidence that human and non- human animal emotional feelings arise from homologous subcortical brain networks provide compelling evidence for evolutionarily shared primal affective qualia.
      We declare the following: “The absence of a neocortex does not appear to preclude an organism from experiencing affective states. Convergent evidence indicates that non-human animals have the neuroanatomical, neurochemical, and neurophysiological substrates of conscious states along with the capacity to exhibit intentional behaviors. Consequently, the weight of evidence indicates that humans are not unique in possessing the neurological substrates that generate consciousness. Non- human animals, including all mammals and birds, and many other creatures, including octopuses, also possess these neurological substrates.”
      * The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness was written by Philip Low and edited by Jaak Panksepp, Diana Reiss, David Edelman, Bruno Van Swinderen, Philip Low and Christof Koch. The Declaration was publicly proclaimed in Cambridge, UK, on July 7, 2012, at the Francis Crick Memorial Conference on Consciousness in Human and non-Human Animals, at Churchill College, University of Cambridge, by Low, Edelman and Koch. The Declaration was signed by the conference participants that very evening, in the presence of Stephen Hawking, in the Balfour Room at the Hotel du Vin in Cambridge, UK. The signing ceremony was memorialized by CBS 60 Minutes.


      • Louie C and Icy Spots, another comment about birds, in this case chickens. Needs more study, but it’s been theorized they feel empathy (not just sympathy) for their fellows – a deep emotion once thought to be a trait exclusive to humans. If so, how much more empathy should higher animals feel? We’re being conditioned not to feel, especially those in the military who must not relate to fellow humans they kill or die as collateral damage, because it makes them vulnerable. Imo, “first-person-shooter” and “drone” video games are part of that conditioning. Now some in politics and the media are conditioning their followers to believe the “haves” bear little or no obligation to help the “have nots” in society. It’s considered their fault they end up without jobs, homeless, and in need of a safety net, even in this extreme economic downturn. Granted, the safety net is abused by some, but others truly need it. Elitists may have sympathy for them, but no empathy.


    Activists, Government, Wild Horse Herds and Responsibility

    Being an activist, or taking a vigorous and sometimes aggressive action in pursuing a political or social end, is a strange and often difficult task for most common folks. Some activists are termed anarchists, or somebody who believes that governments should be changed or abolished. This is not the roll of most activists, and those that remain active against Wild Horse Herd Roundups remain synonymous with positive attributes.
    Change is Inevitable and Positive Change is not an Easy Task

    Demonizing Activists
    The other and more significant problem is demonizing the activist, so popular and used by politicians loosely in today’s media. Some Journalists fall under this situation quite a bit, especially describing the opposition or those views contrary to the politician’s. But when needed for their votes, suddenly activists become a popular necessity, and in reality can and often do sway results.

    These terms are used by those who believe “hate” is acceptable in our culture. One must wonder if politician’s consultants tell them that’s what a politician should do, or behave like, in today’s social environment; this compared to simply confronting and to actually resolve a problem or controversial situation. Then activists would not be needed. No, hate is not acceptable!

    Rights to All Americans
    Americans have Rights upheld by the CONSTITUTION and within the BILL OF RIGHTS. There is no confusion within either document, that is, until our government agencies, and their employees attempt to persuade us toward confusion, especially when caught doing something contradictory toward either document

    Common Folks and Activism
    Often the way our civil servants, who are responsible for safeguarding, for example taxpayer lands and wildlife, do so in a questionable or disrespectful manner toward those who actually own, in this case, our lands and wildlife and owned/managed by the government body, defined as American ownership, as the government is made up . . .FOR THE PEOPLE AND THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

    Open Debate is Good for the Country
    An Open-Debate platform, having correct information is good for our country, good for our freedoms of speech, our freedoms of daily movement and activities, and the very foundation good decisions are made upon.

    This confusion, or overabundance of information, becomes a vast road-block to many activists that have, indeed, taken upon themselves the responsibility of correcting something wrong in our government system.


  9. No Ms. Clausing you’re the bleeping bitch for not listening, refusing to even try to get it right. Now AP has a huge mess BECAUSE others chose to copy your stuff that you refused to fix.

    Who cares that someone is an advocate. It’s called checking your sources. And double checking those.

    When I was on the school newspaper I was taught to even triple check sources. Today those sources are so easy to navigate to. It’s easy to email sources or gasp to even pick up the phone. When I was on the paper you had to do snail mail, pick up the phone or drive wherever. You have it so much easier.

    So in my lowly opinion its you who are the bleeping bitch.


  10. Despite all of the propaganda against wild horse, GUESS WHAT? AMERICANS are NOT fooled. A consistent 80 to 90 percent are against horse slaughter. The last poll I saw said 92 percent, so Americans aren’t buying their brainwashing!



    Tens of thousands of us have spoken out about the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s (FWS) transfer of wild horses from the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge in Nevada to Stan Palmer, the known slaughter middleman in Mississippi, but Washington isn’t listening.

    Just this week, another 100 horses were shipped to Palmer from Sheldon.
    A Palmer employee recently urged people on Facebook to “show up with your trailer and load em up….need gone asap!!!!” adding, “when they leave my house they are no longer my business.”

    Following the post, Sheldon horses began leaving Palmer’s property by the truckload. On October 31, the trailer below — packed with Sheldon horses — was one of two loads that left Palmer’s headed for Magnolia, Mississippi, where the horses allegedly will be used as rodeo bucking stock. There is little doubt that these wild, untamed adult horses will eventually end up in the slaughter pipeline.
    Senator Barbara Boxer is the Chairwoman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW), which has oversight authority over FWS. Take these three steps right now to ask her and EPW to get to the bottom of this situation ASAP:

    1. Post to Twitter:

    2. Copy the text below and post to Senator Boxer’s Facebook Page.
    HEY Senator Boxer, before it’s too late, please use your Environment & Public Works oversight power to investigate why the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service transferred 252 wild horses to slaughter middleman

    Senator Boxer’s Facebook page

    3. If you haven’t already, contact your Senators
    and encourage them to make the same request of Senator Boxer and the EPW Committee


  12. Good luck with this. Senator Boxer ignored a wild horse protection bill submitted to her committee last year, but rewarded the USFWS with three bills Ducks Unlimited, its partner that intervened on behalf of FWS to prevent the legislation from coming up.

    I was tald rather late in the game that being able to prove that the horse is native might help.


    • HH, I am working diligently on this, but there is no concrete truth they are not native. Whenever you run across this objection the proof must be presented that they are not, which cannot be done. This contorted truth has become a sort of invader itself, worming into public thought and policy. There is more evidence of nativity than of non-nativity, the disagreement continues over a supposed extinction for a geologically minuscule amount of time but this is not a nativity argument.
      I’m sure you know all this, but I think we need to demand the proof of those espousing these unprovable theories wherever we find them.


      • Icy Spots, I am not sure where the crude comment came from, but I hope you know that I did not use my account to show disrespect to you.

        I think I have gotten to the originator of this claim, and as this entered U.S. policy in the 1993 OTA F-565 Report, the authors provide no authoritative sources for the claims that any of the species they claimed were non-native actually did not originate in North America. In fact, this is one of the types of examples when I rant about the low standard for science I am referring to. The goal of the agencies that declare a species non-native is to either eradicate it outright or to control it numbers so low it will genetically collapse. These people had an enormous amount of hubris and it may be possible that no one ever asked them to show their evidence—which is, as you point out, the first thing that one should ask for. I am not trying to be mean about Barbara Boxer. She had a bill that could a wild horse herd that is now inbreeding and more babies are being deformed and dying, and she did not act on the bill. This is an important herd to the people of the state where I live and it is an economic boon to an area that has nothing other than a lighthouse. Many Senators are receiving large donations from corporations profiting from the removal of our wild horses. It’s more complicated.


  13. The long bearded ‘duck’ men seem to have impt opinions all of a sudden maybe for a couple reasons, one their television shows rakes in millions of southern viewers and is profitable, and Duck Matriarch is saying all the right crap the GOP wants to hear! That doesn’t protect or help save any of our threatened wild horses. Phony bs!!!! Barbara Boxer, setup for America’s wild horses & burros or face being voted out of office.


  14. I think that the native versus non-native argument is used as a red herring to divert the discussion away from the fact that Wild Horses and Burros are Federally Protected. It often works quite well, as you will see the entire discussion dissolve into pointless arguments and AWAY from the main topic.


  15. Linda, I am beginning to think that a DNA check is needed for some, as they are very cold-blooded and appear to have NO emotion what-so-ever. Isn’t that the definition of “psychopathic behavior”?

    Snakes in Suits When Psychopaths go to Work

    Let’s say you’re about to hire somebody for a position in your company. Your corporation wants someone who’s fearless, charismatic, and full of new ideas. Candidate X is charming, smart, and has all the right answers to your questions. Problem solved, right? Maybe not.We’d like to think that if we met someone who was completely without conscience — someone who was capable of doing anything at all if it served his or her purposes — we would recognize it. In popular culture, the image of the psychopath is of someone like Hannibal Lecter or the BTK Killer. But in reality, many psychopaths just want money, or power, or fame, or simply a nice car. Where do these psychopaths go? Often, it’s to the corporate world. Researchers Paul Babiak and Robert Hare have long studied psychopaths. Hare, the author of Without Conscience, is a world-renowned expert on psychopathy, and Babiak is an industrial-organizational psychologist.


  16. This fight is not just in the west. Tennessee is one if the states that horse slaughter is possible. Mr Dobson owns Foggy Valley Farm. They breed appaloosas. He is president of thelocal state Aphc club.
    Have these people no shame?


  17. I STILL don’t see my comment on ABC News and comments that were posted much later than mine are showing…makes a person wonder. WHY would ABC NOT post a link to Vickery’s article in Forbes….an article that is clearly well documented and well researched?


  18. Posted on November 7, 2013 at 8:7 PM
    By Clarion-Ledger

    A Pelahatchie man embroiled in a national controversy over the fate of wild horses rounded up from federal land in northern Nevada received a shipment of wild horses on Monday, despite warnings he was giving them away, a national preservation group claims.

    The American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign this week sent an official request to the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Committee for immediate action and investigation of the Fish and Wildlife Service for the shipment of 252 wild mustangs to Stan Palmer of J&S Associates, the campaign said in a news release.

    In October, Sheldon began shipping wild horses captured the previous month from refuge lands, to Mississippi, the campaign says. Horses began leaving the Palmer property by the truckload, the campaign said.

    The horses were captured from the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge in Nevada; the campaign calls Palmer a “slaughter middleman in Mississippi.” Sheldon officials sent the last of the horses to Mississippi on Monday, “despite warnings that the middleman, government contractor Stan Palmer of J&S Associates, was giving away horses by the truckload,” the campaign’s release says.

    The campaign is asking the Senate committee to investigate the FWS/Palmer government contract, and to put a hold on Palmer’s dispersal of any additional Sheldon horses while the investigation is under way. The campaign also hopes that the committee will ask the refuge to reconsider its plan to eradicate wild horses and due to their historic and cultural significance to the area.
    The government pays Palmer more than $1,000 per horse “to take the horses off the government’s hands, despite the department’s own internal investigation that showed wild horses previously sent to Palmer have ended up in the slaughter pipeline,” the campaign says.

    The ancestors of the Sheldon horses fought in battles as cavalry mounts through World War I, the campaign says.

    In a letter to the chair and members of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, which has jurisdiction over FWS refuges, the campaign wrote, “The FWS has gone to great lengths to continue its relationship with J&S in order to continue the laundering of wild horses captured from the Sheldon Refuge. The FWS has spent nearly $1 million tax dollars in this scheme that has placed the fate of hundreds of mustangs in jeopardy.

    “The actions of the FWS in this matter are inconsistent with the Obama Administration’s public stance against horse slaughter. You are the last hope for holding this government agency accountable and securing a humane fate for these horses.”

    The FWS continued to contract with Palmer in 2013 despite an internal investigation documenting that Palmer could not verify the whereabouts of as many as 200 of the 262 horses placed with him between 2010 and 2013, the campaign says. Under the government contract, Palmer is supposed to find quality, long-term homes for the horses. He is prohibited from selling them for auction or slaughter, the campaign says.


  19. I have posted THREE times on the ABC website
    Federal Appeals Court Halts Horse Slaughterhouses
    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. November 5, 2013 (AP)
    By JERI CLAUSING Associated Press
    …..and STILL my comments are not being shown. This is the most recent comment and it is still in the moderation box. Let’s see if ABC shows it.
    Brutal Documentary, ‘Saving America’s Horses,’ Shatters Hollywood Myth
    Hollywood has mythologized horses for decades, but taught moviegoers little about them.
    This is great for pumping millions into the entertainment and racing industries, but is terrible for U.S. horses, whose lives end more typically in unregulated, inhumane abattoirs than the lush green pastures that exist in most films and the public’s imagination.
    More than one Hollywood horse has gone to slaughter after filming. But that’s small compared to the tens of thousands of horses winding up on meat hooks each year, all of them kept neatly out of public view by the slaughter industry in concert with U.S government agencies and a host of lobbyists and politicians—all of them reliant on U.S. taxpayers to fund the rounding-up of America’s wild horses and burros and the inspections of slaughterhouses, without which they cannot operate.
    It’s a betrayal of both equines and Americans to say the least—a topic handled forcefully in Katia Louise’s documentary, Saving America’s Horses: A Nation Betrayed.


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