Wild West Welfare

Straight from the Horse's Heart

Privately owned welfare cattle being herded onto public land and wild horse habitat  ~  photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation Privately owned welfare cattle being herded onto public land and wild horse habitat ~ photo by Terry Fitch of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

SOURCE:  Counterpunch
Buying Out A Swindle

Wild West Welfare

by WILLIAM WILLERS

“The western cattle industry has been riding the backs of taxpayers for nearly seventy years”

–T.H. Watkins, 2002

Few have profited more or longer off of American taxpayers than livestock operators who graze the public lands of the American West.  Tens of thousands of square miles there have, for more than three quarters of a century, been managed essentially as grazing estates for a small minority of “permittees” – individuals or corporations holding federal grazing permits.

The scheme dates back to the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934 when the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM, known at the time as the Grazing Service) placed millions of acres into “grazing allotments”.  Over ensuing generations politics…

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