BLM employees ordered to wear propaganda badges

Source:  Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility

New Uniform “Vision Cards” Display Images of Oil Rig and Livestock Grazing

Washington, DC — U.S. Bureau of Land Management employees are now under orders to wear “Vision Cards” on their uniforms displaying official maxims, according to Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER).  These cards are little message boards with aphoristic statements about vision, mission, values, and guiding principles of the BLM.

Vision card grazing   image card

“The person of federal employees should not be used for political messaging,” stated PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, noting the Vison Cards’ similarity to propaganda placards used by totalitarian regimes. “This is supposed to be the Bureau of Land Management not Mao’s Red Guard.”

The two Vision Cards for uniform wear repeat language from the agency website.  The cards –

  • Display the image of an oil rig and what appears to be livestock grazing, in contrast to the official BLM logo which shows a tree, river, and mountain;
  • Reference serving “stakeholders” and “customers” but do not mention serving the public; and
  • Declare that the purpose of improving “the health and productivity of the land” is “to support the BLM multiple-use mission.”

It is not clear from where the order to wear the Vison Cards emanates.  BLM has no permanent director nor has the Trump White House even named a nominee.  During the past year, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and a small band of political appointees in DC have dictated BLM policy.  While reports of the mandatory card display have reached PEER from the West, the organization is still trying to determine whether the order is national in scope.

Read the rest of this news release HERE.

Fringe Horse Slaughter Cult Begs for Cash

(In My Most Amused Opinion ~ by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Killing and Eating Horses Proves to be a Costly Business

Wallis and Duquette fan collecting for the killing

Plagued by scandal, ethics complaints and law suits Wyoming State Rep. Sue Wallis and alleged horse trainer Dave Duquette plead with the public to finance their ongoing horse abuse campaign.

Desperate to bring unwelcome horse slaughter to the United States the “United Horseman”, formerly the “United Horseman’s Front” and formerly the “United Organizations for the Horse”, etc., etc, have issued a statement claiming that their controversial “Summit of the Horse”, held last January in Las Vegas, has left them bereft of funds and in serious fiscal straits:

We pulled off a very successful national event, the Summit of the Horse, in Las Vegas, that still isn’t paid for entirely. All of the presentations of experts from all over the horse world at the Summit were videoed and are posted on the Summit of the Horse website, but we don’t have the funds to do the editing necessary to use them most effectively.

In the same statement they say that the meagerly attended meeting was a success yet they don’t have the money to pay for it. This is typical of the double talk and distortion of the truth that these two renegades are famous for and the methodology that they utilize in an effort to ignore the truth.

And they are right, they sincerely need to edit those tapes as they do not speak to their dance as their main speakers, the Director of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Bob Abbey and Temple Grandin did not support or condone their solution for a non-existent over population of horses via the predatory business of horse slaughter.

To watch the videos is a cold and slimy walk on the dark side where paranoia runs amuck and passion is delivered over protecting puppy mills and the joys of eating companion horses.

We prevented a victim of out-of-state HSUS abuse from…being convicted of felony animal abuse, and losing her entire livelihood and twenty-five horses in Arkansas.

Now there is something to be proud of.

We stopped a so-called “horse tripping” bill in Oregon…Now we’re facing an almost identical bill in Nevada

There’s a notion, why not just go nationwide in the promotion of the inhumane and cruel treatment America’s equines.

We fixed an animal cruelty bill in Wyoming that was…ambiguous and made-up terms designed to limit animal owner’s property rights like “puppy mill,” “animal hoarder…”

Wow, we sure would not want to call a spade a spade and actually identify animal abusers for what they are, more double talk is in order.  That’s why these deviants refer to blood horse slaughter as “processing”, isn’t that sweet?

We continue to work to remove …regulations blocking horse meat inspection.  This is the major roadblock to sustainability for the entire horse industry, and where we really need to focus our energy. It takes dollars!

Yup, broadcasting lies and attempting to sustain a false premise as a lifetime center piece takes blood money, lots of bloody money.

There is a huge problem with too many feral horses all over the country, but especially in the West, where they are destroying ecosystems on state, tribal, and private lands more so than on federal lands

Has anyone seen these bands of murderous and dangerous horses?  I personally just witnessed several small bands of horses ripped off from over a million acres only to be replaced by hundreds and hundreds of private cattle.  Hmmm…maybe the cows could be the culprits but none the less, we need to be on the look-out for those gangs of unruly horses tearing up people’s flower gardens.

We are consulting with a number of entities to bring together an economical and environmental small scale processing solution that can be quickly put together, and which can be used to process multiple species, including horses.”

Hey, ‘economical and environmental small scale’ not only doesn’t the sentence make any grammatical sense but what in the heck does it mean?  Do they plan to put a portable slaughter thingy in the back of that Dodge truck that they couldn’t get enough money for to the tune of over a year?

We are working with our international partners to ensure that horse processing facilities are using humane handling standards in the plants…

They totally gloss over the carcinogenic drugs that reside in the flesh of U.S. horses and how the EU no longer will accept it.  The truth is simply not an issue with these maniacs.

We can’t keep doing all of this without your help. All of this, and more, is going on RIGHT NOW…and in order to be effective, we need financial resources…

Send more than you can afford, and send it TODAY! Use the button below, or send a check to PO Box 454, Hermiston, OR 97838.”

Interesting closure, ‘send more than you can afford’ and be sure to send it to Oregon, not to Wyoming where “Slaughterhouse” Rep. Wallis is under investigation for fraud and ethics charges from her Wyoming based horse meat club and also where she is being sued for alleged assault against a benign wild horse advocate…more under the table dealings with potentially explosive repercussions.

So that is as much that I care to pollute this piece with, it is already beginning to smell pretty bad in here but for those who have a strong stomach and would get a kick out of watching these flea bitten rats go down with their stinking ship then click (HERE) to read their bloody, begging propaganda in it’s entirety.

For me; I am going to sign off, pour a Wrangler Iced Tea and offer a toast to all that is good in the world, may they be equine or human; hats off to the good guys and the losers be damned.


Nebraska Shamed by Horse Eating Senators

OpEd by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Just When You Thought It Couldn’t Get Any Stupider

I had a difficult time turning my mind off and getting any sleep last night.  No, it had nothing to do with the fireworks that went off outside my hotel window at 2 AM or the roster that thinks the sun comes up at 3.  Instead, sleep was kept at bay by thoughts of smug politicians standing behind podiums spouting lies, untruths, fabrications and even making false accusations.  How do they get away with it?

"I am sick and tired of STUPID!"

Yesterday we ran the article on the insanity that is the Nebraska Senate and it’s perverted pursuit of bringing bloody horse slaughter to their state.  When you consider the source I can understand why baby faced and immature Sen. Tyson Larson thinks killing and eating horses is a cool thing to do, hell, he has hung out with “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis and Davie “Doink” Duquette and in so doing he has caught the disease; it’s highly contagious you know…where I come from it’s called “butt ugly stupid”.  By rubbing elbows, and God knows what else, this little newbie legislator has contracted the cancer of dumb and dumber so he has been coached on ignoring the facts, speaking falsehoods and worshiping special interests as that is where the good ole money comes from.

But now Nebraska is further embarrassed by a Sen. Tom Carlson who not only supported the bill but went on to use incorrect figures and flawed methodology while kicking things up a notch and getting all over HSUS who all the horse eaters fear as the big, bad boogie man.  These guys are screaming, raving maniacs.  How does the public let these corn jerker’s get away with it?

This is the sort of stuff that nightmares are made of and that is exactly what kept me awake when I should have been dreaming about home, my wife, our horses and the possibilities of ridding the political systems of such obvious whores to the dollar.

I am disgusted, not tired, just angry, pissed off and sick of the nonsense.  I don’t do “stupid” very well and my Fun Meter is about pegged at zero.

Perhaps it’s time to take the gloves off, maybe we should be picking up the phone and letting these idiots know just exactly what we think of them.  We clog the faxes of the BLM and our federal representatives maybe these little piss ants need to hear from us.  They think that we are all radical “animal rights activists” anyway why not verify the fact that we have clout and the ability to be heard.  For a fact they need to read the facts on the horse slaughter issue as so eloquently put by John Holland, recently.  Spam their email boxes with the truth and then see what these boneheaded bastards have to say.  We can’t let this slip under the table without banging on a drum or stepping on their crooked toes.

Take a second and read  their rhetoric (HERE) then read, copy or forward John’s information (HERE) and let these bubble headed Bozos know what you think of them.  I don’t care if they don’t represent me, they need to know that the bulk of taxpaying, law abiding Americans are against slaughtering and eating our companion horses.

Sen. Tyson Larson’s email is and phone is 402-471-2801

Sen. Tom Carlson’s email is and phone is 402-471-2732

And no insult to the good folks of Nebraska, who these soulless pieces of crap represent, but where I come from we have a saying, “Cowboys don’t eat their best friend.”

But who knows, these guys might…remember, they are politicians.

Fringe Horse Slaughter Faction Infuriates American Public

Guest Commentary by Vicki Tobin ~ Vice President of the Equine Welfare Alliance

Bizarre Behavior Leads to Questions on Personal Ethics

“Several days ago we ran an article on the outrageous efforts of Wyoming state rep. Sue Wallis and Dave Duquette, of “United Horseman”, to block an anti-cruelty bill aimed at outlawing the inhumane practice of “horse tripping” in Nevada.   With a long record of insidious and despicable escapades behind them this latest trip into the dark side has seemed to touch a nerve in sane American’s across this great nation.  The article has been shared across the internet and went viral on FaceBook with multiple comments on the total lack of moral fiber and proper ethics displayed by these two charlatans.  With the myriad of comments and emails flowing in we have selected the comment posted by the Equine Welfare Alliance’s Vice President to showcase, here, today.  Vicki Tobin sums up the situation and shines the bright spotlight of truth on these bloody denizens of the dark and dank.  Take it away, Vicki…” ~R.T.

"United Horsemeat"

Their problem is they need a gimmick. And the gimmick is try to equate every welfare bill as a first step to something else. That’s not paranoia. It is a calculated agenda to try to scare the legitimate horse industry sectors and turn the horse industry into a meat industry. They attack HSUS because they are the largest welfare organization. There is another large respected organization that is getting back to its horse roots and they will be next on the hit list. What they won’t admit is that they already have a large lobby with the beef industry and farm bureaus. But that would require admitting they are all about the meat industry and not the horse industry. Other than breeders, they have no major support from the horse industry.Every year they invent something new and this year is it the slippery slope on steroids.

They claim to want a horseback culture but horseback culture doesn’t include abuse to horses or having to inflict harm on a horse to make a living. That is, other than the horse slaughter business which is not part of American horseback culture but a foreign meat business.

Their statements are an insult to anyone in the horse industry. The horses earn billions and deserve to be treated humanely and afforded a humane death. What would the rodeos be without horses? What would the racing industry be without horses? It is the horses that earn the money and bring the spectators and for that, they are rewarded with people like Dave and Sue claiming to be for their welfare but refusing to support any legislation that benefits horse welfare, not supporting any type of after retirement care or to be providing a humane death?

They need to understand that the horse industry is not a meat industry. Time to put the horses above their ridiculous agenda on bashing welfare organizations. It’s about the horses, not who is proposing legislation.

Did you see Duquette’s latest comments on the TRF issues and using that as an example to promote horse slaughter? Hey, Dave, you do realize that every one of the horses at TRF has had bute. Way to go, Dave. Never sway from your faulty agenda and publicly post your refusal to follow regulations. That instills a lot of confidence in your “regulated” plant. I guess the regulations will be your regulations and not the law. BTW-we still have “processing” but no legitimate welfare organization is going to send horses to slaughter. The horses wouldn’t be at TRF if the owners took responsibility for them but let’s put the blame on TRF. Let’s keep over breeding and then blame the rescues when they can’t take anymore horses or get in over their head. Whatever you do, don’t try to help them, just blame them while you promote producing more horses than the market can bear.

Vicki Tobin

Click (HERE) to learn more about Rep. “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis

Click (HERE) to learn more about Dave “Doink” Duquette


Cruel Queen of Horse Slaughter Suffers Bout of Paranoia

(In My Humble Opinion) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

“Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis Feels the Heat of the Truth

Wyoming State Rep. "Slaughterhouse" Sue Wallis (left) and sidekick Dave Duquette (right) ~ photo courtesy of Scummit of the Horse

Sue Wallis, the fanatical leader of a small, fringe pro-horse slaughter group has publicly admitted that she is beginning to feel “paranoid” due to the heat she and partner Dave Duquette are feeling over supporting a move to derail a bill, SB 356, which is aimed at outlawing the cruel and inhumane practice of “horse tripping” in the state of Nevada.  Their barbaric banter has raised the ire of horse owners across the country on more than just this occasion but their intentions are made clear with this latest effort to endorse and support the cruel treatment of horses in Nevada.

“Sometimes it feels like we are being attacked from every direction – at the risk of sounding paranoid – the fact is, we are.” states renegade Wyoming State Rep. Sue Wallis in a communique to her handful of followers.

“Now is the time for every horse person who has any hope of raising their children and grandchildren in a horseback culture…any chance of making a living with the animals we all love…we have to stand together. We have to remain vigilant. And we have to be much more pro-active than we have ever been before.” says Wallis regarding the proposed legislation to ban this cruel practice that is alive and well, covertly, in many western states.

“AN ACT relating to cruelty to animals; prohibiting a person from engaging in horse tripping for enjoyment, entertainment, competition or practice; prohibiting a person from knowingly organizing, sponsoring, promoting, overseeing or receiving admission money for a horse tripping event; repealing a requirement that any ordinance passed by a board of county commissioners creating an offense relating to horse tripping must impose a criminal penalty for the offense; providing a penalty; and providing other matters properly relating thereto.”

Wallis and Duquette have championed past causes that have rained down shame and embarrassment upon their families, communities, states and nation in the past.  From their continued efforts to bring predatory and bloody horse slaughter to their respective states, to boycotting about every professional horseman and celebrity in the U.S. to even attempting to stop the Mustang Monument float from appearing in the Rose Bowl parade, these two are a dastardly duo of deception, bar none, and need to be exposed for the self-serving phonies that they are.

In a recent Equine Welfare Alliance press release Vice President Vick Tobin states,

““They are misleading the public with false information and trying to scare people into opposing the legislation. This is not an attack on rodeos or a first step to anything. It is a bill designed to end the cruel, dangerous treatment of horses as was the ban on horse soring.”

United Horsemeat

The press release goes on to clarify that Wallis and Duquettes’ horse slaughter front organization “United Horseman” in a recent  email to its supporters, provides a list of invalid talking points that are an insult to the public’s intelligence and a disservice to American rodeos. The group claims that the Charro Rodeo Association voluntary banned horse tripping in 1995 when in fact, they were forced to do so by a 1994 law, AB 49x – a law that was not spearheaded by the HSUS.

In her latest, paranoid email Wallis adds a little piece from an alleged resident of Nevada that gives the information on how to contact the Nevada Senate Natural Resource Committee:

SB364 has been referred to the Senate Natural Resources Committee where it will be debated. The time-frame is unknown due to the fact that when a bill is brought up for debate is a committee chairman’s decision; however, I would urge people to contact members of the committee expressing your feelings on the proposed legislation.  E-mail addresses are as follows:

John Jay Lee –

Mark Manendo, Chair –

David Parks –

Michael Roberson –

Dean Rhoads –

Another neat way to voice your opinions on any legislation in the current sessions was recently brought to my attention. Go to this website and follow the directions. It is super easy. (FYI: Madeline Pickens instructed her followers on her Facebook page to use her Wells, NV address when submitting comments. Then they look like Nevada constituents!!) Try it, you’ll like it. Don’t sit on your hands, take action, don’t wait for someone else to do it.  Remember people, Confucious say: ” Man who sit on hands has no leg to stand on.”(or something to that effect. lol)

That little (lol) just turns your stomach, doesn’t it?

There is nothing funny about promoting and prolonging animal cruelty, nor is endorsing and making one’s lifetime goal to be that of building a horse slaughter plant.  It is sick, grotesque, perverted and without morals.

The preceding paragraph was not written by an animal radical, terrorist or activist but by an average, taxpaying American citizen who is appalled at the reckless use of press and media to endorse and support cruelty and  suffering to animals and humans of any kind, shape or fashion.

It’s time for these two social outcasts to crawl back under the slimy rocks that they emerged  from because we are going to continue to shine the bright spotlight of truth and honesty on them every time they open their twisted mouths.

Not only are we not going away, we are getting stronger and when you have the wind of honesty on your back, your opponents cannot win in any race.

Wallis and Duquette, we are watching you and we are watching you very closely.

For the sake of the future welfare of American equines,


Click (HERE) to read recent UH propaganda

BLM Video of Public Comment at Advisory Board Meeting

BLM Video of March 11, 2011 public comment on defunct Wild Horse and Burro Program

Public Comment Session in it’s Entirety

First Portion

Second Portion

One Central Theme, “Stop the Roundups, NOW!”

Wild Horse Advocates R.T. Fitch, Ginger Kathrens, Elyse Gardner and Terry Fitch ~ Photo by Nancy Babcock


Bogus Nevada Cow Committee Takes Impotent Swipe at Wild Horses

article by George Knapp of Las Vegas KLAS – TV

“Cattle-driven Rhoads Pushes Bulls**t Horse Law”

George Knapp

It’s great to know our state lawmakers have solved Nevada’s budget woes and have nothing else to do with their time in Carson City. How else to explain a recent vote by the Senate’s Natural Resources Committee regarding wild horses?

The committee, whose longest-serving and most influential member is Dean Rhoads, staunch defender of all that is bovine, approved a bill that urges the BLM to make sure no public land is designated as habitat for wild horses. See, public land is for one thing and one thing only — cows. Privately owned cows, that is. Maybe an occasional sheep. Sen. Rhoads personally leases 60,000 acres from BLM for his cows, and at a bargain price, too, far less than the market value of the land.

The bill, as approved by Rhoads’ committee, would make sure the number of mustangs in Nevada doesn’t get any higher than it is now, and it strongly discourages the creation of wild horse sanctuaries on public ranges. You might be asking, what authority does the state of Nevada have over federally owned lands? Good point. The answer is none. Nevada can’t dictate what is or is not done with federal land, nor does it have any say in regulating wild horses on federal land. In other words, this resolution has zero chance of affecting the public range in any positive way, but it does have the power to screw with our state in a negative way.

Sen. Rhoads is a cattle rancher. He believes that the public range is for cattle, not wild horses, even though federal law says the mustangs have a right to exist on the public lands, while cattle grazing by private ranchers is, at best, a privilege. Rhoads has campaigned against wild horses in pretty much every session of his long legislative career, even opposing a campaign by fourth-graders to declare the mustang as Nevada’s official animal. He has frequently urged the feds to round up as many wild horses as they can capture, to get them off the public lands, even though private cattle outnumber the horses 40 to 1.

If this bill makes it through the Legislature, it won’t make a rat’s ass bit of difference to the BLM’s management of public lands. After all, in just the past two years, the BLM has wiped horses off the map on more than 1 million acres of Nevada range. It doesn’t exactly need a pep talk from Carson City to round up more horses. This week, the bureau came down off the fence regarding the possibility of creating public/private horse sanctuaries, declaring that it wants to hear proposals right away. Presumably this would include the ambitious plans by philanthropist Madeleine Pickens to create a million-acre mustang eco-sanctuary in Elko County, a plan that could transform a worn-down cattle ranch into a world-class tourist attraction and education center, where visitors could enjoy wild horses in their natural environment. Mrs. Pickens has already plunked millions of her own dollars into the project. She purchased a ranch near Elko and wants to lease the attached public lands to allow wild mustangs to run free. Cattlemen are appalled because it would mean some of the public land now devoted to cows would be redesignated for horses. Perish the thought.

Is Nevada so flush with investors and new businesses that it can say no to something as unique and promising as the Pickens plan?

What worries me most is that Sen. Rhoads is seen as perhaps the key vote in plans by Democrats to raise revenue in this session, so there is a chance they might toss him this bone, allow him to get his meaningless bill through the Legislature so that he might be more inclined to side with the D’s when it comes to taxes and budget cuts.

Those hardy Nevadans who make a living by raising livestock on our oft-parched ranges have my unqualified respect. It’s a tough life, fraught with peril. Without some sort of management program, wild horses could certainly threaten the viability of some ranches. But this bill would do nothing to manage the horse herds and little to protect hard-scrabble ranch operations. This bill is pure horse shit. Anyone who cares about the mustangs should let state lawmakers know that this resolution is not only a waste of time, but could cost our state millions of dollars in outside investment and lost tourism.

Click (HERE) to visit George at City Life and comment!

EWA Prez Wins One for the Horses in Slaughter Debate

Forward by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Horse Eaters Just Can’t Get It Right

Over the past four weeks Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) President John Holland has been engaged in a publicly printed debate on the issue of predatory horse slaughter with Charles Stemholm in Nebraska’s  North Platt Telegraph.  As most are aware, Nebraska is burdened with a freshman senator that wants to bring bloody horse slaughter to his state while penalizing non-profits who do not take in horses.  The bizarre behavior of  Sen. Tyson Larson is fueled by the fringe, radical horse eating organization, United Horseman, and the deluded Senator has drank from the kool aide of “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis and Dave “Doink” Duquette.

John’s four installments in the debate are listed below.  Mr. Stemholm’s articles can be read by clicking (HERE) and are not displayed on this site out of courtesy to him and respect for the horses, it’s just that inane.

Years of research have gone into the comments made by John and this singular post proves to be an online primer and reference to the issue of horse slaughter in the U.S.

We thank you and the horses thank you, John.” ~ R.T.

‘… horse slaughter is bad for the economy, the community and the taxpayer …’

EWA President John Holland

Senator Tyson Larson’s bills LB 305 and 306 are the latest examples of bad legislation introduced in an attempt to bring back the U.S. horse slaughter plants. LB 305 would require the taxpayers of Nebraska to pay for the establishment of an ante-mortem inspection program designed solely at circumventing the Congressional elimination of funding for mandatory USDA inspection of horses killed for human consumption.

LB 306 would make it a crime for a horse rescue to refuse to accept any horse offered to it. These bills are part of a proxy war between corporate agriculture, breeders and what they see as the “animal rights” movement. LB 306 penalizes those working to compensate for over-breeding and is more a vendetta than reasoned legislation.
Larson claims that opening a horse slaughter plant would be good for Nebraska’s economy, but Nebraska already enjoys the second lowest unemployment in the country (4.4 percent).

In fact, history tells us that it would bring only misery and loss to Nebraskans.

I will present evidence proving that horse slaughter is bad for the economy, the community, the taxpayers, horse owners and the horses themselves. American horse slaughter is a dying practice, and spending treasure to resuscitate it is folly.

Ignoring the worst economy in living memory, both [Charles] Stenholm and Larson claim that the closing of the slaughter plants has harmed the horse market and increased equine neglect. I will first prove this is impossible.

A brief history of horse slaughter:

In 1990, there were about 12 horse slaughter plants operating in the U.S. One of these was Central Nebraska Packing in North Platte. Along with plants in Canada and Mexico USDA statistics show they slaughtered a total of 419,133 American horses that year. Both the number of slaughterhouses and horses slaughtered declined steadily through the decade despite no legal restrictions until California banned slaughter in 1998. Nobody claimed that this 77.5 percent reduction caused any problems.

By 2000 there were only three, foreign owned, horse slaughter plants left in the U.S.; two in Texas and one in Illinois. Horse slaughter declined until 2002, and then rebounded slightly to a level just over 100,000 horses a year.

In January 2007 the two Texas plants were closed when the courts ruled that a 1949 law against selling horsemeat for human consumption was still in effect. The Dallas Crown plant in Kaufman Texas had earlier been ordered closed by the town Board of Adjustments because of pollution, but had successfully remained open through legal delaying.
The remaining Cavel plant in DeKalb, Ill., was shut down in September 2007 after unsuccessfully challenging a new state law against slaughtering horses for human consumption. The removal of funding for required inspections had also closed the plant temporarily and the work-around program allowing the plants to pay for their own inspections was eventuallyruled to be illegal. Like Dallas Crown, the plant was also facing massive fines for its sewage discharge.

The key to the issue is what happened after the plants closed; virtually nothing. The plants relocated their plants to Canada and Mexico in weeks.

In the 10 years before the closings an average of 117,121 American equines were slaughtered per year, and in the three years afterward the annual average was virtually the same at 116,867.

Just as many horses are being purchased at approximately the same prices from the same auctions as before the closings. Therefore, any claim that the closures harmed the horse market or caused horses to be neglected is inescapably false.

We have had slaughter available and it failed to protect the horse market from the recession.

Understanding the property rights issue

Using USDA statistics, I have previously debunked the myth that closing the U.S. horse slaughterhouses had any effect on the horse industry or on equine welfare. The statistics show there was no reduction in the number of American horses slaughtered, only a change in where they were slaughtered.

Mr. Stenholm then claimed that slaughter was a “property rights” issue and that horse owners have the absolute right to do what they want with their horses. But eliminating horse slaughter would in no way limit what ordinary horse owners could do with their horses. They could still sell them or euthanize them. It would merely limit the purposes for which someone could buy horses.

The real threat to property rights:

It is the horse slaughter industry itself that has repeatedly destroyed the property rights of horse owners, ordinary citizens and taxpayers. I will show this by revealing a little more of its dark history.

Behind the now closed Dallas Crown slaughterhouse there is a community called “Boggy Bottom.” The community lived with an indescribable stench caused by a mixture of the plant’s gore and a system of misters that constantly sprayed chlorine into the air in a vain attempt to mask the odor.

A nearby hospital was forced to spend precious funds to install an expensive air treatment system to protect its patients from the noxious odor.

The plant also had chronic waste disposal issues and refused to pay its fines for overwhelming the town’s treatment system. At one point they attempted to force the gory mess down the sewer with a pump, causing blood to rise into the bathtubs and drains of the Boggy Bottom neighborhood.

Worst of all, the Boggy Bottom residents were trapped there because the plant’s presence destroyed their property values and they could not sell their homes.

Eventually the Kaufman Board of Adjustments ordered the plant closed, but Dallas Crown won a restraining order and dragged the town to court on each of the violations, literally exhausting its budget. Yes, citizens of Kaufman know about having their property rights violated!

This pattern has become the norm. The rebuilt “state-of-the-art” Cavel plant was never in compliance on its discharge a single month between its opening and its closing. The neighbors awoke one morning to see a huge tank foaming over onto the ground and splitting at the seams.

The Natural Valley Farms plant in Canada (where Cavel relocated) was caught dumping millions of gallons of horse blood into the river and a lagoon as well as leaving mountains of entrails on the open ground causing the earth to become sterile.

Yet despite this grim record, Mr. Stenholm strongly supported Ed Butcher’s outrageous law in Montana. HB.418 stripped away property owner’s legal rights making it impossible for communities like Boggy Bottom to challenge the building of a horse slaughterhouse. Courts cannot block licensing on many environmental grounds, and any injunction requires a hefty bond and threatens substantial financial penalties to challengers.

When Butcher subsequently announced he was going to get a slaughter plant built in the town of Hardin, Mont., the town council studied the issue and immediately passed ordinance 2010-1 to block it!

Finally, there is the issue of the relation of horse theft to slaughter. In the years before California outlawed slaughter, horse theft had been increasing steadily, but in the seven years afterward horse theft dropped by over 84 percent. Horse theft emotionally devastates its victims. If slaughter returns to Nebraska, future victims’ rights will be forfeited.
It seems that Charlie only supports “property rights” for clients of his lobby firm and not as a general principle.

Far from an economic advantage

Mr. Stenholm referred to the USDA statistics that I referenced (to show that we still have as many horses as ever going to slaughter) as “dubious numbers”. He also referred to the 900 pages of horrific images of mangled horses arriving at slaughter in Texas as “dirty pictures”. Those photos were also from the USDA and were exposed under a FOIA request.

Since Charlie apparently favors debating with adjectives rather than facts and images, I will offer a few adjectives to describe the Larson legislation; impetuous, vindictive, feckless, misguided and futile. Those were the five kindest I could conjure, and here is why.

As amended, LB.306 is intended to force HSUS operated rescues to take any horse offered or face misdemeanor charges. Not only is this outrageously unfair, it is impotent because HSUS does not operate any rescues in Nebraska. So that leaves LB.305 and the “several hundred jobs” Charlie says it would bring to Nebraska.

Sorry Charlie! Sen. Larson apparently forgot to do his homework again. The farm bill language that allows states to perform inspections is limited to slaughter operations having 25 or fewer employees, and USDA officials say it doesn’t allow horse inspections at all. In the unlikely event the USDA relents on horsemeat inspections the prize is still just 25 low paying, dangerous, dehumanizing minimum wage jobs.

Let’s talk money and bureaucracy:

LB.305 would create a whole new state bureaucracy to manage an inspection system for an “industry” of no more than 25 workers. Once created, that bureaucracy would cost the taxpayers of Nebraska in perpetuity, and since antemortem inspections require licensed veterinarians, it is probable that the real employment boom would be in this taxpayer funded government boondoggle.

To gauge what this investment might provide in returns, consider the smallest of the US plants which employed between 33 and 42 people. Dallas Crown 2004 Tax filings, exposed during their fight with the town, show they had gross receipts of $12,007,611 on which they paid $5 in federal taxes and gave $3 to charity!

The horsemeat market is controlled by foreign corporations who have a stranglehold on the distribution. An American company would have no choice but to sell to this cartel at whatever price they were offered.

This is precisely what happened in Canada when the Natural Valley Farms plant began killing horses for Cavel’s parent corporation Velda, LLC (Belgium). The plant finally went bankrupt with losses of $44 million dollars and Velda moved on, leaving a financial and ecological wasteland behind them.

There is little in this for the horse industry either. A study by Deloitte Consulting estimated the horse industry produces a $102 billion total economic impact. Horse slaughter accounts for approximately $36 million of this income, meaning it contributes only about 3 cents of every $100 generated by the horse industry. And it gets worse.

Wyoming and Montana both passed similarly ill-conceived laws and have yet to attract a slaughter plant. Central Nebraska Packing has said it does not intend to reopen its horse slaughter operation and it is unlikely Nebraska will attract another plant given the substantial risk that federal legislation could eventually shut it down.

Moreover, it is entirely likely that the European Union will continue to restrict its horsemeat imports on safety grounds, and changes in federal law would put a new US plant under FDA oversight. The FDA bans most common horse medications from food animals and classifies horses as companion animals.

Larson’s bills are just the latest examples of reckless, ill-conceived and ineffective state legislation spurred on by the “animal rights” fear mongering of lobbyists like Charlie.

Slaughterhouses provide nothing positive

First, I want to thank the Telegraph for providing this unique venue for people to hear both sides of this issue. I also want to thank Mr. Stenholm for confirming that there has been no reduction in the number of US horses going to slaughter since the US plants closed. They have simply been shipped to Canada and Mexico for slaughter.

That admission is extremely important because it proves once and for all that the countless articles about horses being abandoned and neglected because of the plant closings were nothing but propaganda.

I said that I would show that horse slaughter is bad for the economy, the community, the tax payers, horse owners and the horses themselves. I have done just that by recounting the dark history of the industry.

I have shown that the horse slaughter plants in North America have provided nothing positive for their communities and that they have caused enormous loss to horse owners, neighbors and taxpayers, as well as posing a threat to the health of the people who consumed the meat. Each of these plants opened with the public promise it would be different and “state-of-the-art” and each became a brutal, foul cesspool.

Charlie promises to “bring back the jobs” lost as a result of the closings. In recent years, America has lost countless jobs in industries ranging from textiles to computers. Of all these, the horse slaughter jobs are the very last that any community should wish to recover. They are demeaning, dehumanizing, dangerous, low-paying jobs with no future and no self-respect.

Is this the career future Nebraska wants for its sons and daughters? Would you brag that your boy landed a job butchering horses? If returning horse slaughter to the US is a good idea, then how does Charlie explain the fact that Texas and Illinois have repeatedly defeated legislation aimed at overturning their state bans?

The idea of establishing a whole new state bureaucracy on the unlikely chance it might create 25 such jobs is not the kind of thinking that put Nebraska where it is today. It is a blind reaction to carefully nurtured prejudice about Eastern “animal rights activists” meddling in Nebraska’s affairs.

But it has not been PETA or the “Animal Rights” movement that has pushed so hard to eliminate horse slaughter. It has been horse owners and lovers along with people impacted by the horse slaughter business. The “animal rights” advocates hold different views than those of us in the equine welfare community. A few animal rights folks even believe that any use of an animal is immoral.

We on the other hand, relish the many amazing jobs equines do for us. From therapy to dressage to racing, we see them as our animal partners. Many of us are involved in these sports and therapies. We simply want our equine athletes treated with compassion and fairness.

We believe that the relationship between Americans and their equines has always been central to the American experience and history and we believe that selling out these magnificent creatures is morally indefensible. We should not be surprised that horse slaughter leads to human misery as well.

The horse business is not a meat industry. If folks like Larson succeed in making it so, then horse owners will inevitably pay a terrible price. Effective medications will become unavailable and our horses will be tracked from birth like cattle.

If Sen. Larson’s horse breeding business cannot produce horses people want to buy without using the state to kill off the current population, then perhaps he should consider another occupation.


Sequel: Princess Slaughterhouse and the Duke of Doink show their “Ass” or Burro

written by the Master of Fractured Fairy Tails, R.T. Fitch

The Twisted Tale Continues – (for Big People Only)

Before disappearing off into obscurity; the Evil Princess of Wyoming and the Duke of the Kingdom Doink had formulated a plan to raise the numbers of their “Organizations of the Dead Unicorns” from three members to seven.  The politically corrupt Princess “Slaughterhouse” Sue said to the inept Duke of Doink:

“I know; let’s list all of our lies and propaganda on Facebook while ignoring the truth about Unicorn slaughter and paint it as if we really care about Unicorn welfare and try to get two or three more members through distributing and publishing misinformation.  What do you think, Dinky Duke?”

The Duke replied, “Huh?’ through half lidded eyes with just a tad bit of drool running out of the corner of his mouth.

You see, the two misguided members of defunct monarchies were living examples of the negative karma that is expended by eating sacred Unicorn flesh.  The pudgy little princess was on the verge of being ousted by good Prince De Laat, a hero from foreign crusades, and the Duke of Doink could no longer speak using multi-syllable words and was very much attracted to bright shinny objects so coming to a consensus was a very difficult mission indeed.

“Let’s start a fan club on Facebook and then we can invite all of the members to the big Unicorn BBQ when we get the law passed across the land to kill all of the four legged vermin.” growled the slovenly princess.

“Uh huh.” Nodded the Duke as his slobber wetted the front of his T-shirt which read “Half Man – Half Unicorn” with an arrow over the Man pointing up and an arrow below the Unicorn pointing down…we still don’t get it.

So the Evil Princess of Wyoming set up a page on Facebook that extolled their desire to help the poor unwanted Unicorns by killing them humanly while the Duke played a game on his laptop and kept uttering, “Here kitty, kitty…nice kitty, kitty” and the number of members grew from 1 to 7 on their page.

The rotund Princess was ecstatic.  They now had 3 official members and 7 wanna-be members and they still had tickets left for raffling off their chariot.  What a boom; more anti-Unicorn people to wage war against the most beautiful creatures in all the land.  She was so excited that she looked at the Duke of Doink with lust in her eyes but then he picked his nose and poked his finger onto the screen of his laptop and said “Duke like pretty pussy cat” and her passion waned.

But her misguided joy was short lived and quickly quelled as honest, decent folks formed a coalition called the Unicorn Welfare Alliance and quickly began to spread the truth, be it scientific fact or objective observation, across the kingdom and onto Facebook and soon the sloppy Princess was losing members on her Facebook page.

Several of her 7 fans began posting the truth and sharing positive ideas and this infuriated the Princess of slaughter so she started to delete their comments, hide the truth, twist the facts and her numbers quickly fell.

“We can’t have this”, she hollered at the Duke, “These people are not qualified to deal with the truth, they should listen to us and accept our lies for fact”, but the Duke was not listening, he was petting his laptop’s screen and whispering, “Let’s make more pretty pussy cats.”

So the Evil Princess of Wyoming pulled down her loser Facebook page and returned to her dank chambers to brood on more ways to kill and eat Unicorns while the Duke of Doink continued to sit in his boxer shorts and T-shirt, petting his computer’s screen and drifting away into the land of bad karma while the good people of the kingdom slept, unknowing of the evil that walked amongst them.

To be continued…..(because these fools don’t know when to quit)

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