Horse News

WHFF FOIA Fingers Alleged Wild Horse & Burro Advocates Attended Secret Meeting with Pro-Slaughter Groups

Exclusive from Wild Horse Freedom Federation

FACTS YOU NEED TO KNOW

photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

This FOIA Document, from Wild Horse Freedom Federation, clearly states that Neda DeMayo of Return to Freedom, Nancy Perry of ASPCA, Gillian Lyons of HSUS and Drew Lesofski of the American Mustang Foundation participated in a closed door, round table meeting with Pro-Slaughter groups.

Jason Lutterman, the BLM’s PR person sending the attached email, stated that these advocacy groups agreed to “the need to reduce overpopulation and achieve appropriate management level quickly through gathers.” and “the advocates also expressed desire for BLM to follow gathers with intensive fertility control…” 

RTF, ASPCA, HSUS and American Mustang Foundation were in bed with:
BLM’s Ed Roberson and Bruce Rittenhouse, and notorious wild horse haters ~
Tammy Pearson, a Beaver County Utah County Commissioner and a a rancher who has been raising cattle in Millard and Beaver counties for nearly three decades,
Mark Wintch, President of Utah’s Cattle Commission, who has stated  about wild horses: “They do not have any natural predators,” said Mark Wintch, president of the Utah Cattlemen’s Association. “They have no other way to be regulated except by us. To continue to let numbers climb and destroy the natural resource that is there is absolutely foolish.”

Wintch contends that the exponential growth of wild horses is a threat to ranchers’ livelihoods. Cattle and sheep often share public lands with the animals, competing for critical food sources like grass.” “Ranchers have paid for that grass,” Wintch said. “We use it. We have a right to it.”  https://www.kuer.org/post/record-population-boom-wild-horses-raises-hackles-among-ranchers-advocates#stream/0

Drew Lesofski, is the President of the American Mustang Foundation, which was formed only about a year before this meeting. Andrew J. Lesofski of Washington D.C., is listed as the President.  Andrew (AKA Drew)  and at one time was a lobbyist for the lobbying firm District Strategies, a company that lobbied for the State of Nevada.  He is also a past vice president of Big Game Forever.  Andrew’s wife, Emy Lesofski, worked as a Senior Policy Advisor for Sen. Dean Heller (2011-2013) and is currently listed as a professional staff member to the Subcommittee on the Interior and Environment and Related Agencies and also the Committee on Senate Appropriations.  His father is James H. Sadler.  James H. Sadler of Missoula, Montana is listed as the Secretary of American Mustang Foundation.  Sadler ran for the Missoula County Public Schools Board of Trustees.  He was an attorney.  The following quotes were cited from a news article in the June 13, 1984, Missoulian, “Former Missoula lawyer faces five theft charges.” “In 1983 Sadler voluntarily surrendered his license to practice law after unspecified charges were brought before the state Bar Association. “

“Former lawyer James Sadler of Missoula was arrested Tuesday afternoon and charged with stealing almost $80,000 of his client’s money.”  “The five count charge filed in District court Tuesday by Deputy County Attorney Ed McLean accuses Sadler of taking money from clients in real estate deals and in his role as manager of an estate.”

“The counts range from $58,900 allegedly stolen in a real-estate deal to a $12,000 banking transaction, to “more than $300” from Sadler’s guardianship of an elderly man.”  “The thefts allegedly occurred between 1976 and 1982.”  https://rtfitchauthor.com/2017/08/28/lobbyists-formed-american-mustang-foundation-just-9-months-ago-was-this-group-invited-to-utahs-secretive-slaughter-summit/

18 replies »

  1. Reading this I felt absolutely nauseous…..there showing this utter betrayal of our wild horses and burros was in the planning with HSUS, ASPCA and RTF. How these people can live with themselves and continue to proclaim they are doing this in the best interest of these animals is beyond me. They are traitors and have no soul.

    Liked by 6 people

      • I think it will be important to track who gains from the off-range and “research” contracts, for what amounts and for how long, and hold them up to public scrutiny. They are being paid with public funds and the animals involved belong to the public, so there should be full accountability — not years later and countless FOIAs — but ahead of time and all the way through the contract period. Anything less reeks of corruption and self-dealing.

        Liked by 5 people

  2. This is especially ludicrous: “Ranchers have paid for that grass,” Wintch said. “We use it. We have a right to it.”

    Anyone reading this should know, if they don’t already, that the grazing permit program goes into the red around $145 million ANNUALLY, so it doesn’t even pay its own way, we do. To this loss has to be added the less well known millions spent by Wildlife Services to kill predators deemed a threat to that same freeriding livestock. Recall also the entire Bundy phenomenon, which began and escalated by many years of failure to pay grazing fees required by law. Most of the Wild Horse and Burro Program costs are directly tied to removals resulting from introduced livestock grazing public lands as well.

    Further, if you read the Taylor Grazing Act, the grazing permits by law were expressly defined as NOT constituting a property right, only a privilege that was revokable or modifiable at essentially any time during the permit period.

    So, of course some ranchers pay their grazing fees, but even these are as low as the law can go today, and fail to even pay their way at that subsidized rate, so the costs are shifted to everyone else. Then we are expected to nod and agree that somehow all this constitutes a “right” that only a few acquire while everyone else, including our public wild horses and burros, pays the costs.

    Perhaps the system could be improved by requiring any livestock be weighed before unloading on public lands, then weighed again when they leave. Since (organic) dryland grass hay runs around $200/ton and a cow/calf pair can be expected to eat 20% of their body weight on a daily basis, an argument can be made that those who “use the grass” should pay by the pound for the weight gain of their livestock they get from mining grass on our public lands. To this should be added the cost of remediating polluted water holes, erosion, and introduction of salt and pesticides commonly used in livestock operations, and perhaps a “protein extraction” fee since what those animals ingest and convert is permanently removed from the ecosystems they graze. In short, this is just another public lands extraction industry highly subsidized by the public under the false premise it is a “right” and is “paid for.”

    Literal BS.

    Liked by 7 people

    • “ranchers paid for that grass”

      AMERICAN TAXPAYERS paid for that grass

      BLM Cloaking Environmental and Fiscal Impacts of Vast Livestock Program

      November 14, 2019

      Washington, DC — Information about the largest commercial grazing program on the planet is hard to come by and requests for even the most basic data are ignored, according to a lawsuit filed today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). Consequently, the amount of damage inflicted on Western landscapes and the amount of taxpayer subsidy the livestock industry receives is limited to data available prior to the Trump administration.

      The U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s commercial grazing program covers more than 150 million acres across 13 states, an area the size of California and Utah, combined. Earlier this year, BLM lowered its monthly grazing fee to $1.35, down from $1.41, for each “Animal Unit Month”, i.e., a cow with a calf, or five sheep or goats. This $1.35 AUM fee is the lowest allowed by law – a law enacted in 1978. BLM is preparing to announce its fee rate for 2020.

      PEER’s attempt to obtain an explanation for how these ultra-low fees were calculated and updates on previous reports of widespread overgrazing leaves unanswered questions about –

      · Livestock allotments failing to meet BLM’s own Standards for Rangeland Health reflecting minimum quality of water, vegetation and soils, as well as the ability to support wildlife. The last available reports indicate that 30 million acres, an area the size of New York State, are experiencing range health failure due to overgrazing;

      · BLM’s fee is supposed to be based on “fair-market value” yet the current all-time low fee is a fraction of what private owners, states, and even other federal agencies charge; and

      · The BLM fees cover only a small portion of what it costs the agency to administer its grazing program but the precise extent of the current subsidy to industry is unknown.

      “By all indications, BLM’s livestock grazing program is landscape malpractice on an epic scale,” stated PEER’s Advocacy Director Kirsten Stade, noting that commercial livestock grazing is also a major climate change agent, releasing millions of tons of carbon annually and more than one third of all human-induced methane. “American taxpayers are subsidizing a program that is driving desertification, destruction of riparian areas, and introduction of invasive species.”

      Despite the program’s size, BLM has shrunken the cyberspace accorded to it, demoting commercial livestock grazing from a program to a sub-program on its website, sharing equal billing with “reindeer grazing in Alaska.”

      “BLM’s lack of institutional candor is reducing much of the American West to terra incognita,” added PEER Senior Counsel Peter Jenkins who filed the organization’s Freedom of Information Act lawsuit today in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. “What is new is that BLM no longer tries to explain, let alone justify, what it is doing to our public lands.”

      https://www.peer.org/rock-bottom-federal-grazing-fees-probed/

      Liked by 3 people

      • BLM’s fee is supposed to be based on “fair-market value” but here are the facts:

        What is the average paid per month per Animal Unit (AUM) in 2018 in the REAL world?
        Lowest is $9.50 (Nevada) to highest $46.00 (Nebraska)
        BLM charges $1.35 (2019) !!!

        Per the Oregon Annual Stats Bulletin page 15

        Click to access OR_ANN_2019.pdf

        Liked by 3 people

      • Courtesy American Taxpayers (just ONE example)

        Potential Award Amount:$244,360

        Description WILD HORSE AND BURRO PROGRAM HELICOPTER DRIVE TRAPPING GATHER – WY FIFTEEN MILE HMA
        Period of Performance 09/16/2019 – 10/30/2019 (1 month)
        Primary Place of Performance WORLAND, WY 82401 Congressional District: WY-00
        Contract Award Type DELIVERY ORDER
        Contract Pricing Type FIRM FIXED PRICE

        Recipient
        CATTOOR LIVESTOCK ROUNDUP INC

        Address
        475 S 200 W NEPHI, UT 84648 Congressional District: UT-04
        DUNS
        603387242
        Parent DUNS
        603387242
        Business Types
        Corporate Entity Not Tax Exempt
        For Profit Organization

        Awarding Agency
        Department of the Interior
        Sub-Agency
        Bureau of Land Management

        https://www.usaspending.gov/#/award/86802392

        Liked by 2 people

    • As I see it, the only ways change can happen are two. First, legal action, and second, action by Congress. Both of these will only get any traction if enough people show up, stand up and speak up. This means pressing those running for office, joining legal actions that you can support, and voting when the opportunity arises. We need millions of people doing this to get any real attention from those in power today.

      I’m also convinced we need to provide better possible strategies, not just endless complaints, so challenge everyone reading this to try to think of realistic ways we can improve this broken system ethically and responsibly.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I agree.

        This idea is not new but one thing that needs to be made clear to the public and our legislators is the fraud and corruption of the BLM and we need to always use the scientifically supportable TRUTH … unlike the BLM/FS.

        Why is this so important? Because there is no over-population of our wild ones on their legally designated lands (both Herd Areas and Herd Management Areas). Since there is no over-population then the BLM/FS capture, removal, sterilization actions are illegal.

        One example of many: https://rtfitchauthor.com/2018/05/30/false-statements-are-a-federal-crime-punishable-by-prison-time-blm-releases-false-population-statistics-for-wild-horses-and-burros/

        Like

      • GG, I understand this but since the BLM (and USFS) have been given agency authority over our wild herds, they make their own numbers and Congress is inclined to accept them without criticism. They can and do proclaim “overpopulation” repeatedly, based on their own Arbitrary Management Levels which will not stand under scrutiny, but again, Congress favors them over the public. This is where both legal action and the public pressuring Congress can make a difference and lead to meaningful consequences.

        Take for one example the endlessly regurgitated number the BLM tosses out as a national AML: 27,000. This number was the admitted estimate of wild horses and burros roaming the entire western half of America in 1971. Nobody knew then or knows now how many live animals exist on our (shrinking) public lands, but that 27,000 was never based on any science or independently verified inventory. Yet here we are nearly 50 years on with that number being held up as some sort of unholy grail, and Congress doesn’t question it.

        For scale, consider if those 27,000 were evenly divided over the ten states which still host wild herds. That would be 2,700 per state. In Colorado we intentionally manage for ~300,000 Elk and ~270,000 Mule Deer. These range about half our state more or less, and yet this is not considered any sort of overpopulation because the people support them through buying licenses and habitat stamps. In fact there is grave concern about population declines due to prion diseases.

        BLM’s Colorado wild horse and burro AML was declared to be a low of 423 and a high of 813 a few years back; BLM grazing permit AUMs for livestock were just under 600,000 in 2014 per their own records.

        Since this is yet again an election year everyone should try to get those running to take a stand on these matters, and vote accordingly. What would it take to get even a single question on wild horse management into the upcoming Democratic debates, for starters?

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Below is part of something written a few years back when Utah commissioners were threatening to get rid of wild horses. It was clearly a conspiracy and it appears per the FOIA doc that this meeting was a conspiracy.

    “It has been rumored that conspirators have stated they intend to break the federal law by killing federally protected wild horses and burros. If the rumors are factual, those threatening to take this action are threatening to break a federal law and their threat alone is a conspiracy against the citizens of the United States of America. Will BLM and the USFS cower to these people or look the other way and allow them to bully the American people and the government of the United States? If they do, then all participating members of BLM/USFS are equally guilty as accessories to the conspiracy.

    A criminal conspiracy exists when two or more people agree to commit an unlawful act, and then take some action toward its completion. The action taken need not itself be a crime, but it must indicate that those involved in the conspiracy knew of the plan and intended to break the law. All collaborators involved and showing intent to break the law can be charged with conspiracy to commit the crime, regardless of whether the crime itself is actually attempted or completed.

    An accessory to conspiracy must generally have knowledge that a crime is being, or will be committed. A person with such knowledge may become an accessory by helping or encouraging the criminal in some way, or simply by failing to report the crime to proper authority. If BLM/USFS law enforcement can’t stop the threatening parties from committing crimes that they have announced they will carry out, then it is BLM’s/USFS’s legal duty to report those crimes to the proper authority that is capable of stopping the crime against the American people. If they don’t … then they are clearly accessories to the crimes.”

    Liked by 3 people

  4. The World’s Biggest Lawsuit: Juliana v. United States (excerpts)
    Posted on July 25, 2019 by Lambert Strether
    By Lambert Strether of Corrente

    The American Bar Association, in “Can Our Children Trust Us with Their Future?,” describes the scale of the case and the stakes:

    Juliana: Public Trust Doctrine

    Violation of the public trust doctrine is the fourth claim for relief in the plaintiff’s original brief. That claim reads in relevant part:
    Plaintiffs are beneficiaries of rights under the public trust doctrine, rights that are secured by the Ninth Amendment and embodied in the reserved powers doctrines of the Tenth Amendment and the Vesting, Nobility, and Posterity Clauses of the Constitution. These rights protect the rights of present and future generations to those essential natural resources that are of public concern to the citizens of our nation. These vital natural resources include at least the air (atmosphere), water, seas, the shores of the sea, and wildlife. The overarching public trust resource is our country’s life-sustaining climate system, which encompasses our atmosphere,waters, oceans, and biosphere. Defendants must take affirmative steps to protect those trust resources.
    309. As sovereign trustees, Defendants have a duty to refrain from “substantial impairment” of these essential natural resources. The affirmative aggregate acts of Defendants in the areas of fossil fuel production and consumption have unconstitutionally caused, and continue to cause, substantial impairment to the essential public trust resources. Defendants have failed in their duty of care to safeguard the interests of Plaintiffs as the present and future beneficiaries of the public trust. Such abdication of duty abrogates the ability of succeeding members of the Executive Branch and Congress to provide for the survival and welfare of our citizens and to promote the endurance of our nation.

    310. As sovereign trustees, the affirmative aggregate acts of Defendants are unconstitutional and in contravention of their duty to hold the atmosphere and other public trust resources in trust. Instead, Defendants have alienated substantial portions of the atmosphere in favor of the interests of private parties so that these private parties can treat our nation’s atmosphere as a dump for their carbon emissions.
    (The Posterity Clause of the Constitution is in the Preamble: “to ourselves and our Posterity.”) That’s the stuff to give the troops! Here is a lawyerly disquistion on the public trust doctrine from the American Bar Association, “Climate Change Litigation: A Way Forward“, with citations and everything:

    Public trust arguments are based on a long-established doctrine from Roman times carried forward in common law jurisprudence for generations. The doctrine asserts that natural resources are the birthright of the public and the government is responsible for preserving the resources for this and future generations in the same way a trustee must preserve a trust. See Brief of Amicus Curiae Law Professors in Support of Plaintiffs-Appellees’ Answering Brief at 5, Juliana v. United States, No. 18-36082 (9th Cir. Mar. 1, 2019). Cases relating to public resources such as water, public access, and fisheries and wildlife have successfully employed this principle. See Richard M. Frank, Symposium, The Public Trust Doctrine: Assessing Its Recent Past & Charting Its Future, 45 U.C. Davis L. Rev. 665, 671–80 (2012). Federal and state courts have granted public trust claims. See id. at 673. Using the same reasoning, atmospheric trust litigation claims the government has a duty as trustee to protect the atmosphere, air, and a livable climate. Individuals like the Juliana plaintiffs use public trust theory litigation to argue that the government has a duty to act in the public interest by protecting the trust corpus and fulfilling the government’s role as trustee.

    https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2019/07/the-worlds-biggest-lawsuit-juliana-v-united-state.html

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Say it isn’t so . . . I do not for the life of me understand how these people hold positions of prominence in organizations I believed in – wholeheartedly!! Utah – why doesn’t someone leak the info. to Robert Redford – bet he’d have a thing or two to say!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Goldman Sachs becomes first major U.S. bank to stop funding Arctic drilling, pulls back on coal
    Published: Dec 21, 2019

    Caribou roam in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska. Goldman Sachs becomes the first U.S. bank to establish a no-go zone in the oil-and-gas sector, a policy change that stressed protecting the refuge in particular.

    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/goldman-sachs-becomes-first-major-us-bank-to-stop-funding-arctic-drilling-pulls-back-on-coal-2019-12-16

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Published on, December 16, 2019
    by
    Common Dreams
    ‘This Is a Big Deal’: Goldman Sachs Rules Out Funding New Coal Projects, Arctic Oil Drilling

    In its new energy policy Goldman said, in part:
    We recognize that we have an impact on the environment through our operations, our investments, and the production and services we finance on behalf of our clients. As an institution that brings providers and users of capital together, we believe that capital markets can and should play an important role in addressing environmental challenges including climate change.

    The commitment related to Arctic drilling and exploration, Goldman said, “includes but is not limited to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.”
    The Trump administration has pushed to open the previously protected area to fossil fuel exploration despite Indigenous opposition and threat of adverse ecological impacts.

    “The Trump administration may not care about ignoring the will of the American people or trampling Indigenous rights, but a growing number of major financial institutions are making it clear that they do,” said Sierra Club campaign representative Ben Cushing. “Goldman Sachs is right to recognize that destroying the Arctic Refuge would be bad business.”

    Among the grassroots activists engaged in that is the Gwich’in Steering Committee, who see the threat of their sacred land in the Arctic being pillaged by the Trump administration’s possible fossil fuel plunder.

    https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/12/16/big-deal-goldman-sachs-rules-out-funding-new-coal-projects-arctic-oil-drilling

    Liked by 1 person

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