Famous country and western singer Merle Haggard is no friend of his local cattle ranchers-

“The thing that bothers me the most is the recklessness and greed of the local ranchers, who run too many cattle back here, choking with waste the creek that runs through my property.  There’s certain times of day that the cowboys like to send them turds down the river.  Them fuckers piss me off.  if you gotta mess up the ecology of the world in order to raise a bunch of cows, well eat somethin else.  I’m not a fan of the cowboys.”   –  Merle Haggard,  Rolling Stone, 10/1/09

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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides, and he is President of the Western Watersheds Project.

24 Responses to Merle Haggard, tell us how you really feel about your local ranchers!

  1. avatar Virginia says:

    I used to think I couldn’t stand Merle Haggard, but he has redeemed himself!

  2. avatar Brian Ertz says:

    sounds about right.

  3. avatar Rick Hammel says:

    Well stated, Merle. We need more people of your stature to speak out against livestock ranching.

    Rick

  4. avatar Ken Cole says:

    I laughed myself silly when I got this email this morning.

  5. avatar Cliff says:

    Adds a whole new meaning to “I’ll never swim Kern River again.” You tell em Merle. Seems like it’s always greed that messes up the ecology.

  6. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Nice to see a celebrity arguing about a good cause.

  7. avatar 2S6CUTT says:

    Love that Merle Haggard. Heading to buy one of his CD’s.

  8. avatar Karen V. Stefanini says:

    Thanks for sharing Merle! Your opinion is highly appreciated. Please become an environmental activist! People will listen when you speak.

  9. avatar Salle says:

    Reminds me of an old song about him:

    “Oh I’ll change your flat tire Merle.
    Don’t you get sweet country pickin’ fingers all covered with dirt. You’re a honky I know, but Merle you got soul
    So I’ll change your flat tire Merle.”

    Can’t recall the artist who wrote/recorded that song.

  10. avatar tim says:

    the degraded, unnatural condition of our western public lands from cattle ranching is a silent, little known tragedy.
    go, merle!

  11. avatar Devin says:

    Salle, the song was recorded by the Pure Prairie League from their album “Two Lane Highway.”

  12. avatar janet says:

    I’m a WY country girl who agrees with Merle whole heartedly. Always like his music but now I like “him” too!

  13. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Can Merle go on a speaking tour?

  14. avatar mikepost says:

    If you ever get to the ranch country just east of Bakersfield’s airport, in Merle’s home town, you will find moon scapes: treeless hills terraced into brown lifeless wastelands. Now 3 years of nasty drought have put the bite on any rancher trying to do the right thing but this is pretty bad.

  15. avatar Pard says:

    I BEVELIVE IT’S TIME TO BOYCOTT BEEF
    Our Public Lands have made welfare cowboys into Rolex Ranchers. Hell even Ted Turner gets help from tax payers.
    YUP…BOYCOTT BEEF …It’s time !

  16. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Pard, better boycott wool and lamb also.

  17. avatar gline says:

    and leather? there is a lot to give up to truly boycott

  18. avatar Angel says:

    I love you Merle Haggard.
    Tell it like it is.
    God loves Merle Haggard too.
    Look out what you say about ole’ Hag.
    Jesus is a friend of his.

  19. avatar Linda says:

    I went to Rolling Stone Oct 1 2009 edition and I can’t see any where Merle said what you printed. Were there two different articles and I just missed it??

  20. avatar Petticoat Rebellion says:

    Hopefully Merle will not suffer the same nasty treatment from the Country music industry & fans for speaking out against cattle ranchers as the Dixie Chicks suffered when they spoke their mind about our former prez, G-Dubya …

  21. avatar Killer says:

    Watch put Merle , down in Texas it’s a punishable crime to speak out against the beef industry, ask Oprah.

  22. avatar kip goozee says:

    I am a writer, a guitar player, I’m 64 and play his songs,his life and leasons are semilar to mine, I live way up North on an Island,its common sense what he is always saying and singing, The Rich get richer, and common folks clean up their mess, hang in there Merle, I got your back! KIP

  23. avatar Bruce Jensen says:

    Loved Merle for a long spell, and this is just one more reason to do so.

    Bruce Jensen, Beef-free for 20 years.

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Quote

‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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