Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence. — John Adams
Horse Advocates state clearly, from fact, that there is no need for the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Wild Horse Herd Roundups, a sub-agency of the Department of the Interior (DOI). Many also think there is no longer a need for such a contempt-oriented government agency as the BLM! Also these same employees at the BLM tell the American public / taxpayers, to pretty much go to hell, when the same taxpayers state clearly, the BLM programs bogus, unwanted, and many criminal at best.
Much of the public/taxpayer base wants the wild horse herds left alone, and remain on public lands — and many taxpayers very much aware that it is the BLM that lies about catastrophes and necessity of management paradigms; in truth, the BLM management paradigms are only political agendas directly involving graft or profits while taking taxpayer money criminally.
The unnecessary roundups cost taxpayers millions if not billions of dollars yearly. Yet this reality, this “thing” our government refers to as “acceptable abuse” or “acceptable expenditure” after their non-fact based and false documentation toward reasoning for the roundups, and everything connected with it, can and should be considered nothing more than mis-use of taxpayer money as well as criminal in nature.
The fact, or truth, is the horse roundups remain contrary to it’s program that established the endeavors of such a useless need, contrary to management principles, contrary to science, contrary to Congressionally passed law and policy, remain and certainly abusive to the horses. . . And yet. . .
The Bureau of Land Management Incompetence = Criminal
Awkwardly, BLM and DOI operate contrary to any values that prescribe decency, morals, non-abusive behavior, and law. Just within the matter of the Wild Horse Herd Roundups and their holding facility management guidelines and principles, one can become thoroughly disgusted with the BLM and DOI.
The treatment of animals, when simply observed, is wrong and on many different levels. Taxpayers continue to pay for this mismanaged operation of abusive Wild Horse Herd Roundups, abuse-oriented storage of these same Wild Horses, and once again the BLM simply tells taxpayers to go to hell when questioned about the obvious abuse and even death of America’s wild horses. . . Yes, arrogantly, the old “. . . everybody is wrong but us attitude. . .” And as we all acknowledge, this unreasonable of all paradigms becomes quite costly, both monetarily and life threatening.
One example of many: The payment process to those who do the helicopter roundups, in one government contract person’s opinion and after perusing several BLM contracts with private contractors, states, “It is an abomination. They pay contractors essentially unearned money, with no proper parameters or checks and balance systems toward quality of work or restrictions on abuse or death of the horses. Way too many items left out of contract to actually adhere to government contract guidelines. . .”
Facts abound not only about and toward the most litigated and costly government agency in America’s history, but the BLM was investigated in the early 1990’s in regard to severe criminal activity throughout this agency. By the way, those investigated have become those in upper management, supervisors, and other levels of responsibility. Mysteriously, with 2,000+ felony arrest warrants compiled, and several hundred misdemeanor arrest warrants signed and ready to serve, the warrants discontinued the night before, with no reason given other than orders given from higher up.
This exists volumes of information about questionable contracts, conflict of interest issues, contractor hiring practices, roundup methodology and violation of both policy and law, and wasted taxpayer money – both criminal and due to: BLM incompetence; sever animal abuse toward horses and outright killing them without excuse or (saddly) due to mistreatment of the horses.
There exist also Federal Court cases won that demonstrate and show repeated Constitutional violations by BLM staff, management, and law enforcement; Federal Court case that show BLM incompetent in their decision making (billions of dollars lost with this one in court and attorney expenses, Justice Department attorneys’, etc…); harassing of American’s by BLM staff and law enforcement; blatantly ignoring Court Orders and on many occasions; employee misconduct and even theft and other criminal activities and situations; conflict of interest between Director’s of the BLM and DOI, as well as top and mid management personnel; and the list goes on!
Many American’s wonder why this agency exists
Every bit of information mentioned above, noteworthy evidence against the BLM and DOI employees, is indeed backed by witnesses, certification of fact, scientific reports which are often arrogantly ignored, data, photos, and videos of all this obvious questionable conduct that indeed is both costly to the taxpayer and could be considered criminal in nature.
Then, ironically, something happens to all of this precise information collected. All of it becomes eligible to fit into whatever extreme characterization is most politically expedient at the moment for BLM or DOI employee management or Directors, or media people in the agency to spew to the Public-At-Large.
Advocates have been blamed for “. . . the sky is falling complex. . .” and “. . . the facts Advocates portray as real driven by their emotions only. . .” or recently, “. . . the NAS Report” (Scientists find BLM incompetent and using bad science for decision making) portrayed as “being nothing more than propaganda done by Horse Advocates.” The fact is the BLM hired scientists as Independent Contractors, to complete a “Truthful Evaluation” on BLM techniques and management principles in regard to wild horse herds and the roundups. The NAS Report (i.e. independent research scientists) found BLM to be “Incompetent in policy, not following the legal aspects of management of the horse herds, and the roundups not needed what so ever.”
The problem is this, the NAS is a government organization, and sub-hired private contractors–Independent Research Scientists, to research and assimilate the report over a two year time period. The NAS was contracted by the BLM/DOI to find out what the problem was with their inefficient and ineffective methodology. The group of research scientists did so, and at a cost to the taxpayers millions, and yet the BLM now ignores the research because it does not fit in with their excuse-paradigm to Senators, Congressmen, and other legislators they feed misinformation to on a constant basis.
BLM Employee Incompetence Abundant
Yes, we can conclude very easily that longevity within a career ambition should be made of much sterner stuff. We can also conclude that distributing false information, propaganda, lies, and innuendo coming from our American taxpayer based public/government employees are wrong.
After all, it is taxpayer property and the BLM and DOI consistently abuse, steal, or label taxpayer and American property as insignificant entity, which costs the taxpayer often millions of dollars yearly within itself, and by just plain old bad reasoning by government employees. I also speak of the continuous expenditures for situations and items unnecessary to do or have, and give a “zero” return to the taxpayer.
Yes, the Wild Horse Herd Roundups are only a small item, yet costly in the billions to taxpayers — and unneeded; especially when considering the non-payment or special interest and politically driven next-to-nothing payments for our Public Lands usage, especially by foreign corporations or mining — and fees often not paid at all, amounting to billions upon billions of dollars —
What’s Going On?
This is really the heart of what the Horse Advocacy is about. The rule of law is dependent upon a government that is willing to abide by the law. Disrespect for the rule of law begins when the government believes itself and its corporate sponsors to be above the law.
But need we discuss, or write here, about the laws and policies being ignored, and even changed at times, to arrange nature into a political paradigm. I think not right now, as research by the reader of this article, when accomplished, is much more memorable.
The only situation provided here, since this should be of concern for every American, is to actually accomplish the research and discover these vast amount of situations the BLM and DOI disregard, favoring corporations and political agendas instead!
This has to do with all American’s and not only our quality of life, but the quality of life for us and our families, for our animals, our nation’s wildlife, and our overall existence toward not becoming corporate pawns, and paying our tax money only to support corporations! History becomes quite clear, and the BLM’s management paradigm, favoring use of our public lands by corporations, at little to no cost, is the road toward total destruction of our public lands and eventually America! It is obvious and ongoing as this article is written.
More generally, the question of whether Horse Advocates do their job? Yes, it is good and brings out not only honest perspective, but forces irresponsible government agencies, as the BLM and DOI to keep responding to the public. When accomplished consistently, and the same old excuses, toward their innocence when indeed the innocent, horses in this case, are being abused, and even tortured and killed at times, then the truth becomes quite obvious over time.
Yes, there exists horse abuse! Yes there exists unnecessary death rates of wild horses due to ignorance of private contractors’ working for the government! And yes, there is criminal behavior at almost all levels of the BLM and no matter what the venue, i.e. wild horse herds, logging, mining, energy, and on and on. . .
It has simply become a matter of survival for the Wild Horses, and Horse Advocates are the people who defend these animals who remain defenseless without Advocates.
We can, as humans, expect no less from any man or woman, and to do what is right — and in this case what is right is defending our Wild Horse Herds from malicious and dishonest people! — John Cox, Horse Advocate
Just a few items the Public should be aware of while the BLM mismanage our Public Lands, and at a great cost to do so. This certainly, at times, becomes far more than BLM employee incompetence and reverts to criminal behavior that should be approached right now, not 20 years from now!
1. BLM approves construction of 50,000 new natural gas wells in southeastern Montana and northeastern Wyoming, despite the threat to national parks and local air quality. Wild Horse Herds and HMA’s liquidated from this Bad Science (manipulated data) – Bad Decisions criteria.
2. A report by the National Academy of Science, ordered by the DOI and administration, concludes that it is safe for people to drink water with as much as 20 parts per billion of perchlorate –- that level is 20 times the standard recommended by the Environmental Protection Agency two years ago.
3. Evidence surfaces that Bush administration quietly changed rules, allowing oil companies to skip environmental requirements when drilling in National Parks.
4. Former BLM employee sues the bureau for wrongfully firing him when he refused to comply with orders to downplay toxic and radioactive dangers at a Nevada copper mine.
5. BLM overestimates the potential amount of natural gas underneath Colorado’s Roan Plateau, stating that the gas reserves could power the country for nine months. A USGS report concludes that the tapped gas supplies could actually power the country for only 6 days.
6. EPA experts accuse Bush administration of altering science on poor air quality over National Parks.
7. Mine Safety and Health Administration demotes and relocates a top official for accusing the agency of covering up facts during the investigation of a massive coal slurry spill in West Virginia.
8. Bush administration deletes key information in letter urging the United Nations to remove Yellowstone from a list of endangered World Heritage Sites.
9. Bush administration claims that environmental laws restrict energy development in the West despite government findings that the vast majority of public lands are open for oil and gas drilling.
10. Interior Department claims that polar bears can be adequately protected from oil drilling in the Arctic Refuge despite government studies showing the opposite to be true.
11. Bush administration grants a Kentucky coal company a reprieve from obeying federal law, allowing mining to continue without a permit (eventual cave-in and 18 minors killed).
12. Hundreds of government wildlife scientists report political pressure, scientific distortion.
13. Court records reveal that a Bush administration political appointee in the Interior Department conspired with industry lobbyists to support the California Farm Bureau’s lawsuit against her own agency. After a series of emails and telephone calls Deputy Assistant Interior Secretary Julie MacDonald tried to scuttle scientific recommendations that favored protecting endangered fish and wildlife habitat by limiting the amount of water diverted for irrigation. Although, administrators have changed, the same people within upper management still exists.
14. NOAA orders federal biologists to rewrite a report that had concluded harmful effects on endangered salmon from a federal plan to divert millions of gallons of water from rivers in Northern California to the southern part of the state.
15. USFWS fires Florida scientist who publicly criticized the agency for using faulty science when approving eight development projects in the critical habitat of the endangered Florida panther.
16. Government biologist resigns after accusing the Bush administration of politicizing science, and illegally disregarding his advice leading to the massive fish kill in the Klamath River.
17. Evidence surfaces that USFWS employed false data to conclude that the Florida panther’s survival is not in jeopardy — when in fact the panther population is severely dwindling.
18. Federal officials deleted information used in a cost-benefit analysis of its recovery of the endangered bull trout, falsely concluding that protecting the species would cost hundreds of millions of dollars.
19. Bush administration admits to hiding three reports regarding Klamath River policies, which suggest that protecting water levels would benefit both wildlife and the economy through recreation. However, the administration later chooses to divert water for agriculture, leading to a massive fish kill.
20. NMFS whistleblower accuses the Bush administration of forcing his agency to violate the Endangered Species Act by overruling concerns that diverting water from the Klamath River for irrigation would harm fish. Subsequently, a massive fish kill resulted that later was linked to the administration’s decision.
21. Industry lobbyists convince the Mineral Management Service to weaken sperm whale protections, which they complained hindered the oil and gas industry.
22. Interior Department abruptly reverses its decision that drilling in the Arctic Refuge would harm polar bears.
23. Top Bush administration political appointee at Interior reverses earlier findings that air pollution from a proposed coal power plant in Kentucky would significantly hamper visibility at the nearby MammothCaveNational Park.
24. EPA records reveal, for the third time, that the agency’s proposal for regulating mercury pollution from power plants copied passages — in some cases word for word — from memos written by a law firm representing the utility industry. It just so happens that the head of EPA’s air program and his chief counsel were both partners at the firm before President Bush installed them at the agency.
“I am convinced that I would have been again asked to change my conclusions, or that the biological opinion would be re-written by someone else based on a less rigorous examination of the scientific evidence and without an appropriate level of caution. … Properly conducted, objective science always describes the amount of uncertainty present in a conclusion. However, it appears that this agency, and others under the current administration, routinely abuse the science by giving inappropriately high significance to very small amounts of scientific uncertainty, if that uncertainty supports a desired outcome. Not only does this lack of caution and misuse of science adversely impact natural resources, it misleads the American public about how science and the scientific method work.” — from Mike Kelly’s resignation letter, May 18, 2004
August 7, 2013 at 10:30 pm
Absolute Truth! All of it, great, great article. Thank you for taking the time to write about such an important and informative article. Much appreciated!
August 8, 2013 at 7:26 am
Tom Gorey, a BLM spokesman, said, “the opponents of our horse gathers face a daunting question of ethics……
BLM Roundup to “Save” Wild Horses Kills Three Wild Horses
Posted: 08/07/2013 5:02 pm
Three wild horses were killed this weekend as a result of a Bureau of Land Management (BLM) roundup in Nevada that was sold as an effort to “save” them from drought.
The BLM announced this and other roundups several weeks ago, arguing that most were “scheduled in response to emergency conditions” such as drought. We questioned this basis at the time by pointing out that the agency’s own handbook classifies droughts not as emergencies, but as events that “can be detected in advance and are managed through the normal planning process.”
Tom Gorey, a BLM spokesman, said, “the opponents of our horse gathers face a daunting question of ethics. On one hand, they imply that if Mother Nature kills off the horses from thirst or starvation, that’s OK. But if we intervene to save these horses, that’s unacceptable.”
But what happened in Nevada this weekend is a strong reminder that it’s the roundups themselves, and not Mother Nature, that present the greatest threat to wild horses:
One mare was killed because she was blind in one eye and the BLM said that “it was dangerous for processing.” She was 15.
A second mare was kicked by another horse while in temporary holding, and suffered a broken leg, so the BLM killed her. She was 8.
A third mare suffered the broken neck from ramming a gate while in the trap after the roundup. She was 9.
Here’s video my colleagues, Deniz Bolbol and Grace Kuhn, captured of this weekend’s roundup:
August 9, 2013 at 12:08 am
USDA/Forest Service shuts down public observation at controversial wild horse roundup
Posted on Aug 8, 2013 by Vivian Farrell
FEDS WILL CAPTURE AND DELIVER HUNDREDS OF WILD HORSES TO SLAUGHTER AUCTION IN SECRET
BLM image of captured mare and foal from 2012 Owyee Herd Management Area roundup. Where are they now?
Wild Horse Preservation Campaign and The Cloud Foundation Press Release
Winnemucca, NV (August 8, 2013) — Yesterday, the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, informed the American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign (AWHPC), a national coalition, that it was reneging on its previous commitment to provide public observation of the taxpayer-funded helicopter roundup of wild horses on public lands in the Humboldt Toiyable National Forest. The capture operation is set to begin tomorrow, Friday, August 9, 2013, at 5 a.m., and the wild horses that are rounded up are scheduled to go to slaughter auction the following week.
Today, attorneys for AWHPC, Return to Freedom, The Cloud Foundation and the Western Watersheds Project sent a letter to the USFS outlining its legal obligations to ensure that federally-protected wild horses are not captured and sent to slaughter. The letter also addressed the USFS’ obligation, under the First Amendment, to provide the public with the opportunity to observe this taxpayer-funded, federal operation.
The USFS plans to use helicopters to roundup as many as 700 wild horses from federal and tribal Lands in northern Nevada and turn them over to the tribes to sell for slaughter. This USFS plan will proceed despite the stated opposition of the Obama Administration and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to the practice of horse slaughter.
Taxpayers will foot the bill not only for the helicopter roundup but also for the transport of horses to the slaughter auction.
The roundup will take place on the Fort McDermitt Paiute and Shoshone Reservation and public lands within the Humboldt Toiyabe National Forest, which is in close proximity to public lands where federally-protected wild horses live.
Captured horses will be put up for auction on August 17, 2013 at the Fallon Livestock Exchange, which is frequented by kill buyers who buy horses and ship them to Canada or Mexico for slaughter. Taxpayers will foot the bill not only for the helicopter roundup but also for the transport of horses to the slaughter auction.
The USFS is required to protect wild horses and burros under the 1971 Wild Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act.
“The Forest Service is shirking its obligations under federal law to protect wild horses and uphold the public’s First Amendment rights,” said Neda DeMayo, President of Return to Freedom, AWHPC’s founding organization. “This backroom deal between the Forest Service and the Paiute-Shoshone tribe to use our tax dollars to roundup wild horses and send them to a slaughter auction is outrageous and unacceptable. This is a betrayal of the American public and it raises the question of whether the federal government is using the tribes to launder protected wild horses to slaughter.”
“Unless the captured horses are branded, there is no way to verify their origin, and they are likely protected wild horses who have strayed from their nearby Herd Management Area,” said Ginger Kathrens, Executive Director of The Cloud Foundation. “We demand that the Forest Service release any captured, unbranded horses because they may, in fact, be wild horses that are federally protected from slaughter. The Forest Service must definitively verify that no federally protected mustangs are caught up in the dragnet of this helicopter assault and slaughter operation.”
The Forest Service will pay to round up the horses and pay to transport them to the Fallon Livestock Exchange. According to AWHPC, any unbranded horses that are rounded up could be federally protected mustangs that wandered off Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Little Owyhee Herd Management Area which are lands designated as wild horse habitat areas. In fact, the BLM’s massive 450,000-acre Little Owyhee Herd Management Area is approximately 10 miles away from USFS lands and within proximity to the reservation; a BLM map for the 2012 Owyhee Complex wild horse roundup indicates that wild horses have been found on lands adjacent to USFS lands and near to the reservation. Wild horses are known to naturally travel great distances on a daily basis.
On May 30, 2013, the USFS and the tribes reportedly signed the agreement to execute this roundup. The decision to remove the horses was signed 15 days later. The USFS reportedly delegated the responsibility to inform the public about this federal operation to the tribe. The USFS conducted no environmental or legal analysis for the proposed action and did not provide the public with any notification or opportunity to comment on it.
August 9, 2013 at 5:23 am
Are our government agencies ABOVE the law?
Apparently they think they are and have declared this in an official document.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has publicly published the statement that they are above the law and the congressional LAW DOES NOT PERTAIN TO THEM! BLM stated (see link below): “The … [Congressional] Act …is not pertinent to the overall management of the wild horse and burro populations by the BLM and USFS. In general, it protects the wild horses and burros from such actions by the general populous.”
So BLM is telling us that the laws of the United States Congress are written for the general public and that BLM and USFS do not have to follow the law. Plain and simple that IS what they are saying.
BLM policies are simply plans and decisions that have been made by the BLM and are ONLY policies and plans and decisions – nothing more. They are not laws of the United States. Any policy established must be within the outline of the umbrella of the law it is required to follow. A policy is nothing more than a plan and is illegal if it does not follow the law of the United States.
I was taught that the law was to be followed and that if it needed to be changed (and many do) then that was the right and responsibility of Americans to do so but for any agency to disregard the law for political and financial reasons was illegal and TREASONOUS.
Click to access FinalVersion_EA.pdf
August 9, 2013 at 6:34 am
REMEMBER CHAMP – THE STALLION WHO SAVED THE FILLY IN THE RIVER? Well… he and his herd are in trouble. Let’s help!
VIDEO OF CHAMP SAVING FILLY
Well, as with most of the wild mustangs out there, their time has come to be rounded up –
Except this time it is worse because Champ’s herd is not classified as ‘wild’ so they are not protected under any laws.
They are classified as ‘feral’.
Feral means that they can be rounded up and sold for meat.
No one would ever know… the horses would be gathered and ‘poof’ – gone.
Fortunately, some individuals are very persistent and under the Freedom of Information Act, they have found out that Champ’s herd is headed down the path of no return.