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“Horse experts call for end of federal mustang roundups”

Dan Vergano, USA TODAY          1:18 p.m. EDT June 5, 2013

“The last roundup? Federal wildlife officials need to rely on contraceptive measure to manage wild horses instead of removal, which only spurs a mustang population boom, an expert panel says.

(Photo: BLM)

Federal managers are taking the wrong approach on wild horse populations and should focus more on contraception rather than rounding up and removing the herds from public lands. If the existing approach isn’t changed, Western wild horses could triple their numbers in six years, an expert panel warns, and more than 100,000 horses could ravage public lands.

Under a 1971 law
, the federal Bureau of Land Management must balance wild horse and burro population numbers against other uses of public lands, such as recreation and grazing. The agency estimates that means about 26,500 horses and burros should be on Western public lands, a number the agency has attempted to achieve through the roundup and removal of excess horses, about 8,000 a year, which are put up for rarely achieved adoption.” …to read more of this story, click here

Oregon Town Doesn’t Want Horse Slaughter Plant on Its Doorstep

By Richard Cockle, The Oregonian

Horse Eating Dave Duquette not Popular in Own Hometown

A water tank greets visitors on Highway 395 into Hermiston. ~ Faith Cathcart/The Oregonian

HERMISTON — Once wide open to virtually any industry that promised payrolls and jobs, the eastern Oregon town of Hermiston is taking a stand against the latest business poised to land on its doorstep.

“I don’t think the first thing you want to see when you get off the freeway is a horse slaughter plant,” said Mayor Robert E. Severson.

That’s a dramatic reversal for a town whose tallest building is the 73-foot Pioneer Hi-Bred International seed cleaning elevator and where the Army’s Umatilla Chemical Depot stockpiled rockets, bombs and land mines armed with nerve gas and mustard agents outside the city limits until this past spring.

But livability is an issue for Hermiston‘s 16,745 residents, and a slaughter plant might discourage other enterprises from coming here, Severson said.

“We are the fastest-growing community in eastern Oregon,” he said. “I’ve had people come up to me and say, ‘Thank God that you took a stand against the horse slaughter plant.'”

Dave Duquette, a Hermiston horse trainer who is organizing the slaughter effort, said the City Council is missing a bet on a proposal that would employ 100 workers, slaughter up to 25,000 horses a year and inject $35 million into the local economy.

He hopes to have the 20,000-square-foot plant in place by late 2013. Investors have bought 252 acres near the junction of Interstate 84/Interstate 82 for the operation, he said.

He also plans a nonprofit horse rehabilitation center managed by the 22,000-member United Horsemen’s Association in conjunction with the plant. It would rescue, train and find homes for horses salvaged from the slaughter stream, he said.

“We are going to try to reproduce this facility in several places in the United States,” said Duquette, who believes the rescue center could be “a role model for the nation.” Horses for slaughter would include old, lame and problem domestic horses as well as unwanted wild horses from herds roaming Indian reservations.

But the mayor and Hermiston City Council have refused to talk to him about the project, he said.

The site is outside Hermiston’s city limits and beyond its urban growth boundaries in an exclusive farm use zone. Richard Jennings, senior planner for Umatilla County in Pendleton, said the county planning commission will decide whether a slaughter plant can be built there.

Severson said the City Council directed Hermiston City Manager Ed Brookshier to oppose the proposal when it comes before the commission.

The nation’s last three horse slaughter plants in Texas and Illinois closed five years ago, ending the annual killing and processing of roughly 100,000 of the nation’s 9.2 million horses. President Barack Obama signed the federal agricultural appropriations bill last spring, lifting a congressional ban on domestic horse meat inspections, in effect allowing slaughter to resume.

Sue Wallis, a Wyoming state representative, cattle rancher and slaughter advocate, said four equine slaughter/processing facilities will open in Missouri, Iowa and New Mexico within two months. All are former beef or bison plants retrofitted for horses, she said.

Industry representatives blame the shutdown of domestic slaughter for triggering steep declines in horse values, causing widespread horse abandonment and overwhelming rescue operations.

Meanwhile, a related population explosion among wild herds on reservations is damaging roots, berries and other traditional Native American foods, tribal members say.

Duquette met with representatives of 11 tribes, some from as far as the Dakotas, last month in Pendleton, to discuss the slaughter issue. He expects tribes to underwrite 51 to 65 percent of the Hermiston plant, he said.

Scott Beckstead, a spokesman for the Humane Society of the United States, applauded the Hermiston City Council for opposing slaughter and took issue with the concept of killing domestic horses for overseas consumption.

“We do not raise our horses to be food; we raise them to be companions,” he said. “This town does not want to be known as the place in Oregon where horses are killed and butchered.”

One of the national Humane Society‘s legislative priorities is passage of the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, to prohibit the resumption of domestic horse slaughter and end the export of unwanted horses to Canada and Mexico for slaughter.

“The answer lies with the industry,” Beckstead said. “They need to adopt policies that promote responsible breeding.”

The Hermiston City Council’s opposition to a slaughter plant doesn’t come “from the standpoint of animal rights,” said Mark Morgan, assistant Hermiston city manager. “It’s more the economic impacts and quality of life impacts.”

Eastern Oregon has plenty of wide open spaces where such a plant could be built, he said. “They just don’t want it that close to Hermiston.”

Richard Cockle

Click (HERE) to comment on Duquette’s 22,000 ghost members and Wallis’ stealth slaughter plants

Equine Welfare Alliance Counters Horse Eater Propaganda to USDA

Update provided by Vicki Tobin ~ VP of Equine Welfare Alliance

One Deranged Sociopath against Truth and 80% of the American Public

Wallis Method for Improving Horse Industry – Kill and Eat Them

As promised, we are providing information should you wish to contact the USDA to correct the misinformation in Wallis’ communication to the USDA. If you need clarification or have questions, please reply to this email and either John or I will respond.

I want to stress that you need to stay focused on the financial issues and detrimental impact to our meat industry. I know how difficult it is to remain level headed when refuting something from Wallis. She pushes everyone’s buttons but you need to take every ounce of restraint and turn off the switch.

We have gone through what we feel are the pertinent points of her communication and provided responses below her drivel. Pick whatever you feel are the most important and in your own words, let your voice be heard. If you have a different take or slightly different way of presenting a particular point, go with what you feel comfortable with. If you choose to call rather than fax, you may be asked questions so it’s important to use what you feel comfortable discussing. Stay professional and keep it short. If you feel several points need to be addressed, bullet points are a great way to make your statements with few words. They are probably receiving a lot of comments so the chances of anyone reading more than one page are slim.

Here is the contact information to call or fax. EWA will also be preparing a statement that we will share with you after it is sent.

Secretary Tom Vilsack
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Fax: 202.720.2166
Phone: 202.720.3631

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

On behalf of the International Equine Business Association and the horse businesses of the United States I am writing to urge your agency to immediately provide the inspection necessary to humanely and safely process horses in facilities that are ready to do so in the United States. The horse industry is already severely damaged because of the lack of market and options, and now with wide spread drought and wild fire damage, the situation is truly dire.

The horse industry does not produce meat. The horse industry is not suffering from lack of slaughter but for the same reason every other industry in this country is suffering; the economy.

Attached please find an urgent petition, and background information supporting this letter.

USDA stands squarely in the way of enterprises that could offer some relief and a humane option for many of these horses. It has come to our attention that USDA is promulgating directives to states that indicate the agency has no intention of providing the inspection they are required by long-standing U.S. law to provide, and are actively discouraging state departments of agriculture from implementing any kind of state inspection. This singles out one class of livestock owner for economic harm and persecution that is extremely detrimental-leaving many with no option except to destroy valuable animals, or to sell them at pathetically low prices and allow them to be hauled to other countries out of U.S. jurisdiction. In the face of widespread natural disaster, some would say this is the height of hypocrisy and completely counter to the mission of the USDA to promote and responsibly regulate agriculture in this country.

Horses are being singled out because they are not food animals in the US. Calling horses livestock does not make them food animals. Food animals are determined by how they are raised and regulated. Accordingly, US horses are non-food animals. They do not meet food safety laws by any stretch of the imagination. US horses are hauled out of the country with or without plants on US soil. According to USDA statistics, 775,474 horses were exported from 1989-2006 when all three foreign owned plants were operating on US soil.

Wallis is asking for a government handout rather than working on programs that would actually help horse owners during difficult times. US tax payers do not need valuable tax dollars funding yet another welfare program that will compromise our current meat industry. There is no reason the government should be spending millions of dollars we don’t have to benefit owners of less than 2% of the horse population. A welfare program of this type promotes over breeding and does nothing to fix the core problem that perpetuates producing excess horses every year. Slaughter is symptom, not a cure.

Wallis is not getting the message that the US does not dispose of animals into the food chain. No animal should be sent to slaughter that was not raised or regulated as a food animal.

Since the US horse industry does not produce meat, this welfare program will not help the horse industry. It will not put money in consumer’s pockets so they can afford to buy and care for horses, fill the seats at race tracks or attend equestrian performance or sporting events. A program such as this will only perpetuate over breeding and ensure there are more excess horses produced for years to come. History has proven this over and over again. Slaughter does not control the population nor does it prevent abuse, neglect or abandonment.

Several horse processing facilities are ready to offer horse owners a fair price for the animals they desperately need to sell – or could be within days – to provide much-needed emergency relief. Markets for the product are ready to accept it domestically and internationally if the meat is USDA-inspected exactly as it was in 2007.

The inspections done in 2007 do not meet today’s food safety laws in the US or EU. The newly released 2013 requirements for third countries exporting horse meat into the EU clearly require full traceability at the farm level. There is no traceability in US horses and no way to guarantee horses are drug free. Horses must be proven drug free before going to slaughter, not by random testing on the back end. Slaughter is not a disposal service for emergency relief.

Slaughter is as available as it was when the US plants were open. If the Mexican and Canadian slaughter plants are rejecting horses, they are ineligible for export to the consuming countries no matter where they would be slaughtered. The US takes food safety seriously and slaughtering horses for human consumption will do nothing but give our meat industry a black eye that it can ill afford.

In addition to the two EU reports that revealed banned substances in US horses and falsified paperwork, Belgium issued a notice¹ on high levels of phenylbutazone and clenbuterol recently found in horse meat exported from Canada.

USDA should not stand in the way of much-needed, humane options for horses. Horses and horse people are uniquely suffering as a direct result of federal government inaction, and the Department’s refusal to provide the inspection services federal law requires USDA to provide.

Across the nation, states, tribes and private citizens are working hand-in-hand with the federal government to provide relief to every other breed of livestock, and every other kind of business, yet USDA stands directly in the path of the same relief for the horse industry.

Slaughter is not an option, it is for food production. The USDA is doing their job by not issuing permits for horse slaughter inspections. Federal law provides for inspections of food animals. US horses are not food animals and we commend the USDA for acting accordingly. As it stands now, the USDA would be issuing permits to slaughter animals that are known to be unsafe for human consumption. With no traceability in US horses, they should not be considered a food source under any circumstance.

This is a moral and ethical imperative that USDA must address without delay.

It is morally and ethically wrong to send meat to any country that is not safe for human consumption.

1 http://tinyurl.com/bp73tw6

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Horse Slaughter Hauler May Be Open Under New Name

Courtesy of WSMV-TV of Nashville, TN

Kill Buyer “Lil Tex” may be attempting to subvert the law, AGAIN!

Three Angel’s Farm June Horse Slaughter Truck Wreck

A Lebanon company that was shut down last month after two accidents involving trailers loaded with horses appears to be up and running again under a new name and in a new location.

A nonprofit group that opposed horse slaughter took a series of pictures on July 21 in Fort Worth, TX. The pictures show a truck loaded with horses, presumably headed to a slaughterhouse in Mexico.

The truck still had markings showing it was from Lebanon, TN, and the door of the truck is marked “Lil Tex,” which is the nickname of the owner of Three Angels Farm, Dorian Ayache.

Three Angels Farms was ordered to cease operations on June 29 after federal investigators documented safety problems with the trucks and trailers. Investigators also said the drivers consistently drove more hours than they were legally allowed to. A January 2012 crash involved a driver who said he fell asleep at the wheel.

The truck photographed in Texas has a DOT number that is listed as belonging to Terri’s Farms in Murfreesboro. The legal owner is Theresa C. Vincent.

Channel 4 paid a visit to Terri’s farm in Murfreesboro; an employee asked us to leave and said Theresa Vincent wasn’t there. We never got a return call, after contacting her several times.

Vincent also runs a business known as “Terri’s Lookout Meadow Farm.” The farm had at least 20 horses. Her website indicates she raises and breeds Appaloosa horses.

When a trucking company has a bad record and reopens under a new name, federal authorities call that a “chameleon” carrier. Ayache has admitted before to opening a new company under a new DOT number. He told federal investigators after his January horse trailer wreck that he opened a company using his brother’s name because his own record was so bad.

The name on the truck photographed in Texas is spelled “Teri’s Farms,” although she spells her name with two R’s elsewhere.

Wyoming’s Slaughterhouse Sue Exposed by Hometown Newspaper

Article by Wyoming’s Star Tribune

The Chickens have come Home to roost for the Bloody Princess of Horse Slaughter

Wyoming’s “$laughterhou$e” $ue Walli$ ~ photo by Pam Nickoles

ROCKVILLE, Mo. — The primary backer of a proposed horse slaughtering operation in western Missouri said she isn’t giving up, even though plans have stalled because of legal problems surrounding the plant that was to be used for the business.

In June, Wyoming legislator Sue Wallis announced that a former beef processing plant in Rockville was being retrofitted to be a horse slaughtering plant, raising hopes of bringing much-needed jobs to the town 100 miles south of Kansas City.

But Wallis’ company, Unified Equine, has not acquired the plant and no work has been done at the site, The Kansas City Star reported Monday.

Wallis’ critics said that is typical of how she has operated since she began pushing to reopen horse slaughtering plants in the U.S. after Congress voted in 2011 to restore funding for horse plant inspections by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“She goes around to all these places with the promise of jobs and people get all excited and nothing ever comes of it,” said Pat Fazio, who works to protect wild horses in Wyoming and has clashed with Wallis many times.

Wallis insisted she plans to continue working to acquire the Rockville plant, noting that organizations such as the Missouri Equine Council support her effort.

Wallis said her company wanted to open a plant in Missouri because it would be close to major transportation hubs and within a few hundred miles of 30 percent of the country’s horses. The plant would be able to process up to 200 animals a day.

The company said its plant would mainly buy healthy, mature horses, process their meat as steaks and hamburger and ship it to markets in China, Mexico, Europe and some ethnic niche markets in the U.S.

But the Rockville plant she wants to use is mired in ownership and legal troubles. Last September, owner Vincent Paletta was sued for breach of contract by a company owned by his wife. Since then, the couple has been sued by a Grandview, Mo., electrician who sought a lien on the property, saying he is owed $60,000 for refrigeration work.

And Vincent Paletta was charged in February with two counts of stealing involving the plant’s operation. He has pleaded not guilty and has said the other issues are being resolved.

Even if the plan moves forward, Wallis will be opposed again by Cynthia McPherson, an attorney who successfully led a fight earlier this year when Wallis announced she planned to open the horse slaughtering operation in Mountain Grove, in southwest Missouri. McPherson represents the electrician who sued Paletta.

Unlike in Mountain Grove, Rockville residents generally supported Wallis’ plans. Mayor Dave Moore said the town was behind it because the beef processing plant had been the town’s biggest employer before it shut down.

Moore said recently that the town continues to hope the project will happen but he acknowledged that nothing has been done since Wallis visited the town to promote the idea.

On top of all the other issues, Congress could again take away funding for USDA inspections of horse slaughter operations. Last month, an amendment to remove funding was added to an appropriations bill by Rep. Jim Moran of Kansas. It has cleared the House Appropriations Committee.

Click (HERE) to visit the Trib and to Comment in Wallis’ own backyard!

No Progress on Horse Slaughter Plant in Rockville, MO

By DONALD BRADLEY of the Kansas City Star

Slaughterhouse $ue Caught in Plethora of Lies and Misinformation

Slaughterhouse $ue Wallis

Sue Wallis can’t stand the thought of hundreds of pounds of good horse meat rotting in the sun.

She loves horses. Somebody ought to be eating that meat so their lives are not wasted, she said last week.

Wallis, 53, grew up on a ranch in Wyoming, writes poetry about riding across the prairie and now is the country’s leading voice for a return to slaughtering horses for meat production.

Closing the plants, which Congress did in 2006, led to horses being abandoned and left to die in a ditch, she and other slaughter supporters say. It also knocked the bottom out of the horse market, they add.

A Wyoming state legislator, Wallis tried unsuccessfully to get processing plants going in her home state. Now she’s decided that the southern Midwest, specifically Missouri, would be the ideal place to return horse slaughter to America.

Wallis has announced plans to open slaughter plants in several cities, including Rockville, Mo., about a hundred miles south of Kansas City. A news release she put out in June said a former beef processing plant there was in the process of being retrofitted for horses.

That was not true. No work had been done and still hasn’t. Wallis’ company, Unified Equine, had not even acquired the building and again, still hasn’t.

Wallis’ critics, of whom there are many, say Rockville is typical of the woman they call “Slaughterhouse Sue.” They say she spreads misinformation; that she’s a regular Harold Hill when it comes to telling folks how horse slaughter is good for horses, good for horse owners and good for towns that allow it.

Wallis has since announced plans to open a slaughter plant in Oklahoma.

“She goes around to all these places with the promise of jobs and people get all excited and nothing ever comes of it,” said Pat Fazio, who works to protect wild horses in Wyoming and has clashed with Wallis over the years.

Which is fine with slaughter opponents. They say Wallis and her allies have done their best to make the most out of a 2011 Government Accountability Office report that concluded that closing the slaughter plants not only hurt horses but also damaged the horse industry by taking the bedrock out of the market: Slaughter at least provided a salvage rate.

Shortly after the GAO report came out, Congress restored funding for plant inspections by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri was one of three members of Congress to push for the reversal.

But anti-slaughter activists say the report overlooked that increased abandonments and falling horse prices coincided with the Great Recession. Owners and would-be owners lost jobs, farms and homes. Prices for hay and feed tripled. Fuel costs rose.

“What’s happened to the horse market had everything to do with a down economy and nothing to do with closing the slaughterhouses,” said Shelly Dunn, a Kansas City horse owner and slaughter opponent.

John Holland, president of the Virginia-based Equine Welfare Alliance, adds that recreational horse owners typically didn’t use slaughter anyway because the animals were too old. Slaughter horses tend to be about 5 years old.

“They (Wallis and other slaughter advocates) like to pretend this is about Ma and Pa Kettle and an old mare, but this really is about the performance horse industry looking to make money off horses they don’t need anymore,” Holland said.

Wallis doesn’t hide her disdain for animal-welfare activists.

“No, I don’t like them,” she said. “They put animals on the same plane as mentally challenged children. It’s completely unnatural. And they’re out to destroy animal agriculture.”………….

 

To reach Donald Bradley, call 816-234-4182 or send email to dbradley@kcstar.com.
Click (HERE) to read the article in it’s entirety and to Comment

Rockville Horse Slaughter Plant Another Misfire for Sue Wallis

information supplied by the Equine Welfare Alliance as it appears in The Sacramento Bee

Horse Eating “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis Becomes National Embarrassment

“Slaughterhouse” $ue Wallis

CHICAGO — Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) – Despite dozens of articles about the imminent opening of a horse slaughter plant in Rockville, Missouri, EWA has learned that the plant is not opening anytime in the foreseeable future.

The announcement by Sue Wallis that the plant was undergoing renovation and would be open in September turns out to have been as premature and misleading as her earlier announcements in Wyoming and Mountain Grove, MO.

Wallis has not in fact purchased the plant, and cannot legally do so (had she the resources) because its ownership is entangled in a complex web of civil and criminal issues involving dubious deeds of trust through a shell company called Six Bears, and criminal theft charges against its Canadian operator Vincent Paletta.

Paletta had already been charged with two counts of felony stealing by deception when Wallis’ announcement brought the plant to the attention of Mountain Grove attorney Cynthia MacPherson. It was MacPherson who uncovered the elaborate plan by the Palettas to protect the plant from creditors.

On behalf of one creditor, Elvin’s Refrigeration, MacPherson has sued the Palettas, asking the court to block all transfers of the property until the ownership can be determined and creditors protected. The petition claims the Palettas violated MUFTA (Missouri Uniform Financial Transactions Act).

Elvin’s has also filed a Nonconsensual Common Law Lien against the plant’s owner charging that the Palettas fraudulently used bogus deeds of trust, and even sued themselves through their shell companies to protect their assets from creditors.

Although Wallis and her Missouri attorney Dan Erdel did form two new companies and have requested federal inspections, they do not own the plant for which the request was made thus rendering the filing moot. Moreover, records show that they have made no application to Missouri agencies for the required permits.

Undeterred, Wallis has already announced a plant in Oklahoma, where selling horse meat or possessing horse meat for sale is illegal. This announcement too has been widely reported as factual.

EWA has published a comprehensive report on the Gordian legal knot encasing the Rockville plant.

Report link: http://www.equinewelfarealliance.org/uploads/Rockville_plant_report-final.pdf

Click (HERE) to visit the BEE and to Comment

Proposed Missouri Horse Slaughterhouse Mired In Lawsuits, Fraud Claims

by Vickery Eckhoff as appearing in the Huffington Post

Sue Wallis is Full of Hot Air

Photo by Julie Caramante

The proposed slaughterhouse brought hope to the struggling rural town of Rockville, MO.

Widely publicized as the first U.S. facility to slaughter horses after a five-year ban on inspections ended last year, the plant would provide 50 jobs according to its chief proponent, Wyoming state representative and horse-slaughter lobbyist, Sue Wallis.

“It will open by summer’s end,” Ms. Wallis has declared in dozens of news reports over the last month.

Except it won’t.

For starters, neither Sue Wallis nor her business partner has filed for the required permits with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources or with the Missouri Department of Agriculture.

You can’t operate a slaughter plant without them and they can take months to process. Further, with the U.S. Congress once again considering a ban on funding USDA inspections of horse meat in 2013, inspections at the Rockville plant — or any horse slaughter plant, for that matter — are highly uncertain.

Perhaps a bigger obstacle, though is that Ms. Wallis and her business partner — Missouri attorney, Dan Erdel — do not own the plant she claims to be retrofitting for a September opening. Nor are they capable of purchasing it legally, thanks to civil and criminal charges arising out of a questionable deed of trust issued through a shell company named Six Bears and its owners and operators, Canadian Vincent Paletta and his wife Diana.

Paletta had already been charged with two counts of felony stealing by deception when Wallis’ announcement brought the plant to the attention of Mountain Grove attorney Cynthia MacPherson. It was MacPherson who uncovered the elaborate plan by the Palettas to protect the plant from creditors. (A comprehensive report on MacPherson’s findings has been issued by The Equine Welfare Alliance).

On behalf of one creditor, Elvin’s Refrigeration, MacPherson has sued the Palettas, asking the court to block all transfers of the property until the ownership can be determined and creditors protected. The petition claims the Palettas violated MUFTA (the Missouri Uniform Financial Transactions Act).

Elvin’s has also filed a Nonconsensual Common Law Lien against the plant’s owner charging that the Palettas fraudulently used bogus deeds of trust and even sued themselves through their shell companies to protect their assets from creditors.

Sue Wallis and Dan Erdel — along with the two companies they formed to ostensibly own and operate the Rockville plant — are unlikely to do either.

This would be Wallis’ second failed attempt to slaughter horses in Missouri. Her previous proposal to the citizens of Mountain Grove (where MacPherson has her law practice) ended badly. Word has it they ran Wallis out of town.

Undeterred, Ms. Wallis has already proclaimed Oklahoma as the next place she will attempt to slaughter horses–despite a state law making it illegal to sell horse meat or possess horse meat for sale.

Perhaps someone should alert the media before they report that, too. So far, it’s been slow to recognize Wallis’ habit of counting chickens — and slaughter plants — she cannot hatch.
Vickery Eckhoff’s writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker and Forbes. Her 11-part series for Forbes.com exposes predatory practices in horse racing and the U.S. horse industry, with a focus on the political, food-safety, humane, environmental and economic impact of horse slaughter.

PLEASE click (HERE) to support Vickery and to Comment on the Huffington Post

The Moran Pro-Horse/Anti-Slaughter Amendment WILL Stand…

Guest OpEd by Vicki Tobin ~ VP of the Equine Welfare Alliance

if the voices of horse owners and advocates are heard

“Slaughterhouse” $ue Wallis

As expected, Wallis has issued another of her manifestos. Of note is her wise decision to go with a cartoon as a logo because her ramblings get more and more comical with each new email. As usual, the issue of drug residue traceability in horses is completely ignored.

As with all of Wallis’ incoherent emails, you must read between the lines. So let’s dissect the nonsensical paragraphs…

The amendment accepted by the House Appropriations Committee isn’t much of a surprise, it’s just a bump in the road to reestablishing humane, government-regulated equine processing in the United States. The Senate has wisely refused to include such language in its Ag spending bill, or the Farm Bill, so we’ll do what we did a year ago: remove the short-sighted language in conference committee should it come to that. Bottom Line – We are confident wiser heads will ultimately prevail.

What she is saying is that she knows her efforts will never succeed. So to make certain she gets her way, she will have it done behind closed doors where no one can debate the issue and where horse owners and horse advocates cannot have their voices heard.

This is akin to what they do with the Horse Slaughter Prevention legislation. They know they will lose if the bills go to the floor for a vote so they stall, block and place secret holds on the legislation.

The Moran amendment does NOT deal with the real issues of starving horses, or the demise of the horse as a valued domestic animal as indicated by the more than 70% drop in numbers of horses available for pleasure, sport, and work, nor does it deal with all of the problems that have happened to the horse world as a direct result of HSUS action since 2007.

This is perhaps one of the most irrational things Wallis has ever penned. She appears to be saying that we do not have enough horses left because we have not killed enough of them. This statement makes no sense on either side of the looking glass. Horse slaughter does not deal with the real issues of starving horses because they are not the horses going to slaughter—not to mention that they were not raised as food animals and therefore, should not go to slaughter.

The Moran amendment would, in fact, increase and exacerbate these problems by rendering literally worthless hundreds of thousands of valuable horses as completely unmarketable…undoubtedly increasing the burden on local agencies and taxpayers to deal with them…a loss and a cost, including thousands of equine jobs, that would far exceed the potential revenue to every level of government generated by normal commerce and a free market.

This makes no sense. Why would she want to kill hundreds of thousands of valuable horses? Why should local taxpayers have to deal with them? Isn’t that the owner’s responsibility? What a great lesson to teach your children on the responsibilities of owning an animal.  Correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t equine services (other than renderers) need live horses to work with. I’ve never heard of farriers working on dead horses or feed and tack providers selling to dead horses. Perhaps Wallis is planning on hiring farriers to trim hooves before they’re butchered. Or maybe she is planning a “last supper” for all of them and then buying new trailers to haul them to the plant.

It is sad that opponents of equine processing contend it’s okay to euthanize an unwanted horse, but it’s not okay to use exactly the same methods to do so under a USDA-regulated, modern and humane system that allows the horse to provide economic value to the farmer/owner and high grade protein to the ultimate purchaser of horse meat, whether here or abroad.

An entire paragraph that is one sentence! What is sad is that anyone would believe this horse manure. Sue, there is a difference between having regulations and enforcing them. Is this going to be the same type of modern plant like the Grandin plant in Canada that was shut down by the government or the same type of plant that had to bolt a horse 11 times? Perhaps it will be like the plant that shoots both eyes out and still must shoot a third time to drop the horse. Yes, we all know the type of regulated plants she will open. We had them here in the US and both states shut them down (not HSUS as she claims). We have the FOIAs and GAO report from the US plants that were USDA regulated. It is shame she continues to ignore the facts and keeps repeating her mantra; humane and regulated. There is no evidence there is such a thing as humane and regulated from any horse slaughter plant that has slaughtered US horses.

Also note, there is no mention of where she is going to get millions to fix the non-existent transport program, inspections, start a national passport system, pay for wastewater clean-up, litigation to get the plants to pay their fines, law enforcement, etc. It’s okay to shove that down the throats of taxpayers so she can kill horses but perish the thought of using taxpayer dollars for a program that would actually help horses.

Would you like a side of Clenbuterol with your bute burger to go along with all that protein? Perhaps a dash of Ivermectin?

Jim Moran of Virginia is an “inside the beltway congressman” doing the bidding of the largest, most aggressive political animal rights organization-yet another Washington D.C. special interest group raising money by vilifying the hard-working, honest, taxpaying agricultural people of America. While it is clear that Jim Moran, HSUS, and a few urban members do not understand the welfare of horses or the economics of rural America, we are confident that the Senate will stand firm for horse owners.

Jim Moran does not do “bidding” for anyone. How dare she, a state representative that does the bidding for a foreign meat industry [not the horse industry] make such an absurd, false statement about a highly respected member of Congress, He does what he does because it is the right thing to do. Whether you are for or against horse slaughter, human food safety should be a top priority with everyone. Our meat industry can ill afford another black eye and that is exactly the unintended consequence of horse slaughter. The callous disregard for food safety in horses and trying to find any possible way to get around food safety laws has everyone questioning the safety of our own food supply. The budget for inspectors was slashed and she wants to add to the workload that will take away from our own food inspections. Please take note that not one legislator that supports horse slaughter addresses this issue or the safety of horse meat. Sue has them trained well.

Already there are plans in 18 states and 12 tribal nations to build modern processing plants; USDA has already received applications for slaughter certification and more are in the pipeline.

Archive this statement! When it doesn’t happen, you can rest assured, she’ll say she was misquoted. Case in point, Mountain Grove, MO. She was run out on a rail and then, instead of admitting defeat, she states she had already ruled out that location. If you did, Sue, then please tell everyone why you would schedule a meeting to try to sell the plant that nobody wanted only to be shot down, yet again, AFTER you had ruled out the location?

Is that like losing the amendment vote and then telling everyone what a great job they did? Or lying to your supporters by telling them the calls were three to one against the amendment when know it was the exact opposite? Sooner or later, your minions will wake up and start questioning you. And we all look forward to what you will tell them.

And be sure to share that drug paper one of your supporters is working on. It is sure to be masterpiece when they still don’t know the difference between race day drug testing and food safety testing. Before the document is released, you might to advise them to read the recent EU report and the white paper from Ireland that you keep ignoring instead of the 2008 report you keep quoting that references protocols, not results.

Oh, and BTW, a voice vote carries as much weight as a roll call.

 

 

Equine Advocates Say Proposed Horse Slaughter Plants In For A Rough Ride

By Oren Dorell, USA TODAY
“It’s ultimately a value question on how we value horses in the United States,”

“Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis with dad Dick and dinner.

Now that Congress has lifted the ban on slaughtering horses, companies plan to open horse-slaughter plants in several states, but animal rights activists say they face a rough ride.

Businesses have filed applications in New Mexico and Missouri and plan to open other facilities in Wyoming and Oklahoma. Horse-slaughter advocates want to produce jobs and lean meat that some consider a healthy delicacy for dinner tables in the USA and abroad. Animal rights groups promise legal obstacles and public protest to using as food animals that helped settle the West.

“It’s very high in protein, very low in fat,” says rancher and Wyoming state Rep. Sue Wallis, a Republican, who wants to run horse-slaughter operations in Missouri and Oklahoma, instead of shipping U.S. horses to Mexico and Canada to be slaughtered. There are markets in dozens of countries and horse meat is 40% cheaper than beef, so demand is rising as Europe’s economy worsens, Wallis says.

Before the ban, horse meat was not popular in the USA, but it could be found in some upscale restaurants. Wallis says her primary customers will be abroad, but “for the U.S. domestic market, if we have a customer that wants the meat prepared case-ready or restaurant-ready, we would be ready to do that.”

Opponents say slaughtering horses is akin to slaughtering a pet and is morally repugnant.

“It’s ultimately a value question on how we value horses in the United States,” says Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States. “Last thing we’re going to do is set up a commercial operation and sell the meat of dogs and cats in other countries. It’s unthinkable.”

He says his group will sue the U.S. Department of Agriculture under environmental impact regulations. He cites waste management concerns and says horse meat that has been treated with pharmaceuticals is unhealthy to consume.

The USDA has received one application for a slaughterhouse in New Mexico and three inquiries from cattle slaughterhouses elsewhere, but none has been approved because inspection regulations have not been updated to reflect industry changes since the ban took effect in 2006.

Horses are iconic animals that affluent Americans see as companions, says Temple Grandin, an animal behaviorist and consultant to the livestock industry. In a poor country such as Mexico, “they look at a horse as a source of protein,” she says.

Congress effectively banned horse slaughter in 2006 when it eliminated funding for horse meat inspectors. Without inspections, slaughtering plants closed, and the export of horses for slaughter in Mexico and Canada increased.

Lawmakers restored funding for inspectors in November after a report by the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, confirmed what some in the livestock industry say: The ban, together with a poor economy and increases in feed costs, caused the price for the cheapest live horses at auction to drop from several hundred dollars to less than $100 and contributed to a rise in neglect, abuse and abandonment. Instead of selling unwanted horses for several hundred dollars at auction, many owners had to pay for euthanasia and disposal, which can cost several hundred dollars, the report said.

Nearly all of 17 state veterinarians questioned by the GAO reported such a trend. “Without exception, these officials reported that horse welfare had generally declined” since the ban, the report said.

Pacelle disputes the GAO’s conclusion that the ban contributed to abuse, neglect and abandonment. The number of U.S. horses slaughtered remained constant around 140,000 before and after the ban, whether they were killed domestically or in other countries, he says. He agrees with another finding of the report — that horses bound for slaughter traveled greater distances to Canada and Mexico and their suffering increased.

The solution, he says, is not to lift the ban on slaughtering horses but to ban the export for slaughter. Pending legislation would do that, but similar bills have failed to pass.

Grandin says banning the export of horses for slaughter would make matters worse for horses, not better, because unwanted horses would be labeled for breeding or riding and go into an underground market in Mexico, where “there’s no supervision at all.” She advocates humane slaughter facilities and independent video monitoring to avert inhumane treatment, such as using more than one blow to kill a horse.

Cynthia MacPherson, a Missouri lawyer and horse lover who joined with activists recently to block a slaughter operation proposed for the town of Mountain Grove, predicts a bleak future for the industry in the USA.

She says, “People are going to be passionate and going to put their heart and soul into trying to stop this.”

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