5-year “demonstration project” to compensate ranchers and fund proactive, non-lethal activities.

The USFWS has announced how it will disperse $1 million annually to the states with wolves for 5 years. This funding was approved in the Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009 which created several wilderness areas such as the Owyhee Wilderness in southern Idaho.

The law specifies that equal amounts of the funding must be used “(1) to assist livestock producers in undertaking proactive, non-lethal activities to reduce the risk of livestock loss due to predation by wolves; and (2) to compensate livestock producers for livestock losses due to such predation.”

No doubt there will be pressure to change how the money is spent so that more of it will go towards compensation of ranchers rather than proactive, non-lethal activities.

U.S. grants $1 million for wolf project
Great Falls Tribune

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Announces $1 Million to States For Wolf Livestock Compensation Project
USFWS Press Release

State Proposed Allocation
MN $100,000
MI $90,000
WI $140,000
ID $140,000
MT $140,000
WY $140,000
AZ $60,000
NM $60,000
OR $15,000
WA $15,000
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About The Author

Ken Cole

Ken Cole, Western Watershed Project’s National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Coordinator, is a 5th generation Idahoan, an avid fly fisherman, wildlife enthusiast, and photographer. He is also serves as a member of the board of directors for Buffalo Field Campaign and as a member of the Sierra Club Grazing Core Team.

54 Responses to More livestock subsidies by the Federal Government

  1. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Let’s just hope that these states can be proactive as it says. If this works this can win over states like Oregon and Washington that are getting wolves via dispersal. I think Utah and possibly Colorado should get in on it as well. Maybe people will be more open to reintroduction. Wishful thinking? :)

  2. avatar WM says:

    It is really interesting that WI gets as much as the NRM states. when both MN and MI get substantially less. This, to me, suggests either they have a great hopes for a non-lethal preventive demonstration program, or there is considerable concern about what the wolves will do as their numbers continue to grow and go after more livestock.

    ProWolf,
    What exactly do you mean by win over WA and OR? WA’s draft wolf plan contemplates compensating livestock owners on larger acreages at 2X the rate the little rancher gets (market price), the theory being it is tougher to prove up wolf kills on larger acreages – 160 acres, if I recall correctly. The livestock contingent of their wolf plan oversight committee thought that was great and basically bought into the plan with the explicit understanding it generally meant no more than 150 wolves total. The urban contingent came out in favor of 2 to 4 times that number (as well as two or three state retained academic biologists who were looking solely at carrying capacity without social tolerance in the mix). The hunters wanted no more than 150 either.

    I think this has a signficant probability of blowing up when the WA wildlife commission looks at the recommended plan later this year, if there is a push for a number larger than 150. I also heard from some folks in Eastern WA who said they really don’t care what the official number is above a nominal presence (150), and that they were not about “let the same foolish crap play out in WA as beeen happening in the NRM,” (their words, not mine). They go on to say, either WS will be very busy when the wolves show up in larger numbers and get in trouble (one can hope the preventive measures program will help here to keep them from getting in trouble), or there will be alot of 3S going on.

  3. avatar JB says:

    I think this constant threat of the 3Ss is largely a ruse to try and get states to keep wolf populations artificially low.
    The type of person who will choose to illegally poach a wolf will do so regardless of wolves’ status. In fact, I’ll go out on a limb and suggest the biggest determining factor of the 3Ss (i.e. wolf poaching) will be opportunity, and opportunity will be a function of the size of the wolf population. Thus, to say that more wolves = more wolf poaching is a self-fulfilling prophecy, as more wolves = more opportunities for unethical people to illegally kill them.

    – – – –

    Remember, wolves will and ARE being shot where they get “in[to] trouble”, mostly be WS. Heck, the territory occupied by wolves in the NRMs is almost entirely federal public lands, and FWS has made it explicit (in the NRM Final Rule) that they do not believe private lands are even “suitable” (there word, not mine) for wolves.

    • avatar JEFF E says:

      I get somewhat tired of hearing the implied 3S crap. The ones that advocate it are basically saying “I’m a poacher POS” and the ones that warn “it’s gonna happen” are fear mongers.
      The fact is that like every other human behavior it happens, and will continue to happen regardless of what animal is being discussed.

  4. avatar dewey says:

    Frankly , this the funds provided in this program shouldn’t pay one thin dime to any rancher losing stock to Wolves if that rancher didn’t make a tangible effort to employ the ” proactive nonlethal” stuff first ….

    Agreed ?

    • avatar Jennifer Towner says:

      The reason for the funds is give them the means of buying the protection they need for the cattle, and possible loss of cattle by the wolves. Who funds the USFWS anyway?

  5. avatar WM says:

    Ken,

    I think the new law is pretty clear, at Sec. 6202 of the Act, that the federal money will be equally distributed between the two purposes: 1) non-lethal proactive measures; and 2) compensation for livestock losses.

    Furthermore, this is a cost-share program in which the funds authorized under the law must be matched with state funds for the same purposes. Query whether the states, or maybe a private entity acting through the state, steps forward to cough up the match. It will be especially interesting to see what ID, MT and WY do for the pro-active parts of the program.

    I suppose, unless FWS writes a regulation against it, the states could take advantage of only the half of the funds that deal with compensation for losses. Their are separate accounting provisions for documentation of use of the funds, which seem to allow for selective participation in one or the other purposes, or both.

    The smart livestock owner might just stand first in line for a pro-active grant to get paid for some or all of the cost of putting up fladry and digging bone pits, or other measures. Then, if it doesn’t work and animals are lost, seek compensation.

    The program is to be funded for five years at the $1 M level, with FWS making the allocation among the states (no doubt CO and UT will be asking soon, too). As wolf populations grow in whichever state, and if commensurate need for pro-active and compensation funds grow as well, the competition for this very small (in my opinon) pot of money will get stiffer. I am very surprised NM and AZ got so much for their 50 or so Mexican wolves, while OR got so little (recall our earlier thread last week and the problems near Joseph and Enterprise). No doubt the funds can be carried over from year to year.

    • avatar Ken Cole says:

      I did read the language in the bill and, yes, the money is to be distributed equally for both purposes but I wonder if the scenario you laid out about the states applying only for half of the funds, the half for compensation, will be how it is actually distributed.

      I like that the bill does call for proactive, non-lethal activities but I remain skeptical about how the states will tackle it.

    • avatar Brian Ertz says:

      compensation is welfare. let them write any loss off on taxes like every other business in the country.

    • avatar WM says:

      Brian,

      patience young Grasshoper…. in time, dear boy, in time.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      While we are on the subject of welfare/federal subsidies. How many of you ranch bashing enviromental lawyers have received part of the BILLIONS in legal fees that our federal government has paid over the last 10 years for the filing of lawsuits against the government – frivolous or otherwise.

    • avatar Ken Cole says:

      Where did you get the billions number? Yes, the Equal Access to Justice Act does reimburse parties who sue the government for acting arbitrarily. It protects you too. This whole argument about EAJA is sour grapes. The cowboy lawyers don’t win so they don’t benefit as much from EAJA.

    • avatar Ken Cole says:

      Where did she get those numbers? It looks to me they are just made up. Not all EAJA funds go to environmentalist lawsuits and you have to be successful in court to receive them. If the cowboy lawyers were successful, which they sometimes are, they would receive these funds too. Frivolous lawsuits don’t win and, thus, don’t get EAJA funds.

      Sour Grapes and an attempt by the livestock industry to limit who can sue the government for acting arbitrarily which they do all of the time.

    • avatar WM says:

      TWB,

      A couple more things to consider. When a lawyer files a suit they must certify that the suit is not “frivolous.” There are special court rules that govern that concept. If a judge finds that a suit is frivolous the lawyer can be sanctioned and then the client/lawyer may have to pay the other sides’ attorney fees and costs in defending against the frivolous suit. Judges really don’t like ‘frivolous” lawsuits, but having said that, sometimes what you and I might think is a really stupid or frivolous suit, might actually have a basis in the law that the judge does not consider frivolous.

      Typically, each side of a lawsuit pays their own attorney fees – that is just the way the American legal system works. But, in certain instances – the EAJA being one – when a suit is filed agains the government and the plaintiff wins, then attorney fees can be awarded from taxpayer funds (yeah its kind of goofy, but nobody has come up with a better system). The important part here is that the plaintiff must win in order to be eligible for an award of attorney fees. A judge (or jury) has to decide who wins, and then the judge decides the amount of fees and costs to award. If you don’t win you waste alot of money pursuing a bad cause, and in the process you may make bad law for the next case that comes along on the same subject (that usually happens in appeals more than trial courts, however), and that is another deterrent from filing a suit.

      The last thing is that one really needs to ask the question why is so much money being paid out for the cases the plaintiffs win. Again, a judge (or jury) had to reach a conclusion about facts and law that resulted in the win. The trouble is why do you have to go to court to get your own government to follow the law. Federal agencies, like the BLM, which is too close to its constituency gets slammed all the time for doing stuff for their rancher clientele. So, the real question that should be asked is why don’t these idiot bureaucrats follow the law?

    • avatar JB says:

      “Why would you stop filing litigation when you can get that kind of money?…They are not filing these suits to try and protect the environment,” she said. “They are filing these suits to make money.”

      Why would they stop filing litigation? They certainly won’t stop filing suits when the government refuses to enforce the laws it passes! If the Administration would enforce environmental laws, then there would be no need for such watchdog groups. Sour grapes, indeed.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      Sounds like a sweet spot for enviromental lawyers. They can file suits as often as they like. If they “win” the taxpayer is stuck with the bill. If they “lose” the people that donated are stuck with the bill. Either way, the lawyer is rolling all the way to the bank.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      Ken and Brian – you guys seem to be in the know about how much federal money goes to ranching and livestock interest – how about you help me out about the amounts that go to enviromental lawyers? Is there a website for that?

      Maybe someone from Western Watersheds or EarthJustice – maybe some of the big Bozeman groups might like to step up to the plate and answer a simple question?

      Set the record straight you know………

      Lots of questions and no answers.

  6. avatar BigSky says:

    Isn’t there a website where you can track all federal subsidies paid to an individual livestock operation?

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      Big Sky – great question, and while we are at it and in the spirit of total disclosure and transparency, how about a website to track the federal subsidies paid to enviromental lawyers? And if that site is not available, maybe some of those enviromental lawyer welfare queens will raise their paws here and share with us how much in “subsidies” they have received.

    • avatar WM says:

      TWB,

      I’m not sure what or who put a bug up your backside today, or who put misinformation in your head. Most of the lawyers working for environmental advocacy groups are employees of those organizations. They typically work for less than in other parts of the private sector, and maybe even their counterparts in the government. Some private lawfirms do pro-bono (free) legal work on the more complex legal issues for them. Nearly all are motivated by causes in which they believe.

      In fact- and read closely TWB – the lawyers that make the real big money are like the woman you quoted in the article above. These private firms have big paying clients or trade organizations who acknowledge the pure economic dollar value of what they have to loose in some of these grazing allotment cases that take the government to task for letting big agribusiness suck at the teat of the taxpayer – illegally. TWB, you should directing your anger at, and asking questions of, those who are really taking advantage of you and me.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      WM – unlike you, I do not care about how much money you or a lawyer “makes” unless I am paying you or the lawyer. As has become evident, there are many lawyers that are being subsidized by you and me. Their business model is as I stated above, win or lose they are being paid.

      And what is up my backside – the welfare queens on here calling others (ranchers in this case) welfare queens. If you do the math, it appears the most hated rancher should ask for more in “welfare” just to catch up with the enviro lawyers.

      It does not appear I am misinformed my friend it appears few here want to wade in on this issue – the silence is deafening.

      WM – really taking advantage of you and me – did you see the numbers??????? It is staggering.

    • avatar WM says:

      TWB,

      I certainly cannot say why there is so much silence on this thread. You raised an important topic. Let me offer one more take on the subject of reimbursement for attorney fees to the winner in a government case under certain conditions.

      The link below will take you to a case summary involving some Montana ranchers who made claims under a USDA noninsured crop disaster assistance program (Some would claim this is a welfare program in itself.). The crop claims were for loss of perrenial grasses, not actually a food crop we could eat, and USDA took the position they are not covered under the program in the first year.

      Apparently the claims were denied by USDA in a non adversarial administrative proceeding, and then the farmers appealed that and won their claims. They probably could not have done any of the substantive claims appeals without legal help. Then the farmers made a demand for the cost for their attorney fees under the federal Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA), because they won their case against USDA, as they had a right to do. The USDA division responsible for reviewing their fee request said you don’t get attorney fees for administrative proceedings like this. They disagreed, and asked a US District Court in MT to rule on the mater. The judge awarded them their fees (and presumably all their other costs in working through the system including filing their USDC case). USDA appealed the judge’s decision, and the 9th Circuit Federal Appeals court said the MT District court judge was right.

      Well, guess what? In this instance the ranchers got their crop claim paid; AS WELL AS and attorney fees to make the claim, appeal of the claim, prosecute of the case in US District court and their appeal to the Ninth Circuit. Who paid for all this?

      YOU AND I DID! The point to my comment is that the system works for everyone, and the way it works seems fairly equitable.

      http://www.calt.iastate.edu/usda.html

    • avatar JB says:

      “…how about a website to track the federal subsidies paid to enviromental lawyers? And if that site is not available, maybe some of those enviromental lawyer welfare queens will raise their paws here and share with us how much in “subsidies” they have received.”

      Well, I’ve been silent because I’ve been at work, but it seems you all have been busy! Regardless, I’m not sure that I have anything to say to the above. Seems to me that TWB has made up his mind that the big bad lawyers are unfairly sucking on the govt. teat.

      Regardless, I find I am equally enraged by these numbers. However, I suspect for different reasons. Frankly, I find it frustrating that our government refuses to follow the laws it passes. The money the Bush Administration spent defending ESA listing determinations is a case in point. How much money went to lawyers that could’ve gone to more productive uses?

      The difference between TWB and me is that he thinks the lawyers for environmental groups are evil for holding the government accountable, whereas I say the government is at fault for not following the laws that it passed.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      WM – I appreciate your effort to provide us with an example of how this “system” we are discussing can work for everyone however, the point I raise and the one cited in the article I provided goes to show that it is really working for some. For example, as of the middle of last year, there had not been a timber sale in MT on NFS lands WITHOUT some form of legal intervention by enviro groups. WM – without knowing the details suerly we can agree that not every 5 acre fuel reduction project was worthy of legal action. If win (paid by taxpayers) or lose (paid by donors) the lawyers filing the suit get paid why not file as many as one would like?

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      JB – your point is valid. Not sure if you were part of the discussion about a month ago along the very same lines you bring up. I was being counseled by some on here about how the enviro lawyers were doing the good works and all – thru that fog came the understanding that indeed some of the enviro suits were simply to force the state or federal agency to follow thru on basic admin or procedural issues. Clearly, everyone can agree that we do not need our legal system consumed by having to “force” certain government agencies to follow thru with basic admin.

      JB – no fan of the Bush admin but, what I read here things are not any better with the current admin.

      So, with all of this negative interaction with the Federal government why do most here continiue to support an adminsitration that wants only more control???

      It boggles the mind.

  7. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    WM, I met that Washington and Oregon might be more open to having wolves when I said win over. I did not know anything about the 150 number or Washington’s specific plans.

  8. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Jeff, I worry about the 3s mentality and I am certainly no poacher. Dewey, I think it will be important to spell out specific proactive measures that should be taken.

    • avatar JEFF E says:

      PW,
      Worring about it and using the possiblity that it may happen for fearmongoring is not the same thing in my mind

  9. avatar Virginia says:

    RLMiller writes again on Dailykos –
    Hike On: Boys Who Cried Wolf 2, Wolves 0.
    Again, a great explanation of the situation at this point in time.

  10. avatar Justin says:

    WM, As far as Wisconsin getting more than MN and MI, it is likely because there are far more small dairy farms and more livestock at risk.

    • avatar WM says:

      Justin,

      That makes sense.

      It seems momentum is building in MN to get their wolves delisted. A couple of weeks back the MN DNR petitioned the FWS to get their wolves delisted, using a novel argument unique to the original designation of MN wolves under the ESA. FWS has 90 days to act. Running parallel to this two MN men filed suit to seek delisting and the MN Livestock groups have also amped up their advocacy for delisting in the last few days.

      Both MN and WI wolf coordinators say it is past time for delisting so that problem wolves can be dealt with under state management programs. The funding for pro-active and non-lethal means is coming none too soon.

      http://www.northlandsnewscenter.com/news/local/90157057.html

  11. avatar Nancy says:

    My local paper (in southwest Montana) just had an article that stated: despite recent lethal efforts, in March, livestock conflicts have not stopped or decreased. This area of the Big Hole has seen extensive pack territory shifts and wolf movements due to high wolf mortality from management (WS) and the hunting season compared to other areas. New dispersing wolves may have moved into this area or near by packs could have expanded into the vacant territory. This area has historically been an area of rapid back fill after lethal removals and has been known as an area of higher conflicts with wolves and livestock. FWP & WS will attempt to place an electric fence and fladry on the calving grounds on a ranch where “most” of the cattle losses in the last two years have occurred.

    Hmmmm? Could FWP & WS actually be giving some thought to working with an established pack? (that will keep other wolves out of their territory) Instead of wasting $$ to destroy them everytime they take advantage of poor livestock husbandry.

  12. avatar Save Bears says:

    Talks with Bears,

    I am really sorry to see you move the direction you are, I thought for a while, you would be a reasonable person that could sit in the middle and actually lean something about both sides of this issue, but is seems you are leaning quite a bit lately. That is really to bad..

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      SB – seriously, if calling out people, who routinely demonize others for welfare abuse while by orders of magnitude are accepting welfare monies themselves has somehow sent me out of the middle then so be it.

  13. avatar Save Bears says:

    TWB,

    I have seen the numbers on both sides of this issue and yes, both numbers are BIG, the ranchers have taken advantage of the laws as have the other side, I think based on my in the field as well as office experience that the numbers lay a bit more in the middle the person you have been talking about has been blowing things out of proportion, as have many on the other side…seek the knowledge, but for gods sake, don’t go off the deep end…

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      SB – if the persons or persons on the other side have “blown things out of proportion” then the enviro lawyers should be able to “put this rest” quite easily.

      However, no answers to simple questions.

  14. avatar Save Bears says:

    TWB,

    I said, both sides have blown things out of proportion, but it seems you have chosen your path…I think that persons on both side of the issue have taken advantage of the laws

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      SB – educate me – when has this side of this issue EVER been addressed on this forum before this evening?

  15. avatar Save Bears says:

    TWB,

    We have talked about this very subject a few times over the last 1+ years, you should use the search function…

    Newwest ran an article about this a few months ago and it was discussed here, there has been quite a few times in the press that articles have been written that end up being linked in this blog.

    I agree, when you look at it on the surface, it can seem really large, but in the whole scope of things, when we look at the ranching community costing the US taxpayer over 500 million a year in loss because of the low AUM rate, that’s right, the current public lands leasing program loses hundreds of millions a year, so I would say, it pretty well evens out.

    If your just finding out about the lawsuits reimbursements, you should do some more research, the person who wrote the article that you quoted, is off in the estimation of how much is paid out each year..

    There are two sides to every issue, and in this particular case both sides, have cost the taxpayers a hell of a lot of money..

    • avatar Save Bears says:

      And as I remember most of the time when a lawsuit is filed and won, the prevailing party gets reimbursed for their costs.

      I am not a lawyer and have never filed a lawsuit of this nature, but I am sure there are those here that are more versed in this aspect of law, that can add a lot more information.

      I know, I do have pending litigation against a previous employer and if my case prevails, my lawyer will be reimbursed for his expenses..

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      SB – in your opinion, how can we have governmental websites with public access so that you can figure AUM rates, comp paid to ranchers for loss etc. but, when it comes to comp paid to lawyers to file a suit against the government we have NOTHING?

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      SB – how are they off in their estimation, the point of the article is how little information and transparency there is on this issue. Please, tell me where you have obtained your figures that show they are off?

  16. avatar pointswest says:

    Maybe the timber and livestock industries, along with the governments they try and own, should find lawyers to work pro bono as do the environmentalist.

    It is the intent of the environmentalists to make the rampant exploitation of the environment more expensive, thus, diminishing the profit incentive. It is perfectly legal. If you don’t like it, move to Russia or China!

    How many billions of dollars is the grizzly or wolf worth? To many in the environmental movement, more than a million billion.

    If it were all about money and economics, all the wolves and grizzlies would already be dead and you and maybe a few Rush Limbaugh types, would be smug puppies.

    To the environmental movement, money, or the lust for it, is the problem. They want to make things expensive for those who would destroy these creatures for the love of money.

    Wake up!

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      Pointswest – exactly which enviro lawyers are working “pro bono”? This entire discussion has been about how they clearly are not.

    • avatar pointswest says:

      Quite a few…but no, I am not going on an errand to research it to prove it to you. Some environmental groups are lawyers who volunteer their time. All environmental groups are volunteer organizations and the money with which they operate is donated.

      How about the timber and livestock industries and the governments they try to own operating on donated money? Let’s see how far their high mindedness, good morals, and public popularity take them.

      Then we can start a discussion of ethics and of money, its source, and its benefit to society. All the money on the side of the timber and livestock industries comes from the profits of despoiling wildlife and its habitat, except where these two industries can manipulate the government with these profits into spending taxpayer money.

      The point was made earlier that there would be no lawsuits if the government simply obeyed the laws and would stop representing the interests of the timber and livestock industries with their greed and desire to exploit wildlife.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      PW – with all due respect, what is your definition of “volunteer”?

    • avatar pointswest says:

      I did not define the word. I use the word as it is used in the common American vernacular.

      vol·un·teer   
      –noun
      1. a person who performs a service willingly and without pay.
      2. a person whose actions are not founded on any legal obligation so to act.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      PW – Wow, I urge you to review the above comments about the compensation of enviro lawyers by the Federal Government – maybe also reference the link I posted above.

    • avatar pointswest says:

      Yeah…I get the point that the lawsuits cost taxpayer money and that lawyers make money from lawsuits…that the whole environmental movement is really just lawyers making a fast buck.

      But explain, then, why lawsuits don’t also go the other way. If it is only a case of lawyers creating arbitrary lawsuits for profit, then why are there not lawyers working for non-profit organization on both sides of the issue? Why is you’re the conspiracy theory only that the environmentalist have money grubbing lawyers on their side? It seems like an immoral money grubbing lawyer whose only concern is the fast buck would not really care whose side he was on. Some would be on one side of the issue as where another would be on the other side. Money grubbing lawyers could be on both sides in collusion with each other to maximize the legal business potential!

      Why is it only possible that the evil lawyers support pro-environmental causes and good lawyers support the timber and livestock industry? Explain that one please…it’s an errands for you this time. It’s fun to give errands.

    • avatar Talks with Bears says:

      PW – the only reason I am addressing the issue of who or how much someone (a lawyer or you) makes is because I/we are paying them. I have no interest in money grubbing talk if it is not comming out of my pocket – not my business. I have not identified a “good” or “bad” lawyer. The issue PW, is that our government is paying huge sums to enviro lawyers and we the people have no way of knowing how much, and to exactly whom these sums are being paid. If everything is on the up and up, someone here would have said hey TWB go to this website and you will see the figures for yourself – well, no one has because it does not exist, and now why would that be?

      PW – when in life you have questions about money and all you hear is silence be very, very suspicious.

    • avatar pointswest says:

      TWB,

      As has been mentioned, it was always the intention of the environmental movement to make exploitation of wildlife and habitat more expensive and less profitable. I agree that some of the expenditures on lawsuits by the taxpayer are unethical. However, I do not place blame entirely on the environmentalists. Also, as has been mentioned, if the government enforced the laws correctly, there would be no basis for lawsuits.

      Another broader moral issue is the relative importence of money versus wildlife. I tend to agree with environmentalist that wildlife should be preserved at any cost and that the additional tax burden (that is very small) to the public is minor when compared to the good of preserving wildlife and it’s habitat.

      Confucious say: Man who care about money but has no care for morals can have good reason to prostitute wife.

  17. avatar Jennifer Towner says:

    Less cattle wouldn’t been a bad idea. It would be good for the environment and our health. If everyone in the world ate like us Americans we would only have fields to grow grain to feed the cattle and nothing else could be planted. We could use that grain and corn to fuel our cars and loose a little weight and become a healither people instead.

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‎"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