Penny Politics: Side Stepping the Government

“The livestock industry is the last wildlife-genocide program in the United States,” says Bruce Apple, the director of an Oregon-based environmental organization appropriately called Rest the West. “All-out war is declared on a diversity of species every day to benefit a single industry.” 

Wild horses of Nevada’s Calico Mountains

This ‘single industry’, the Beef Industry, is one example of how our dollars have an impact to not just the wild horses, but our health and the environment. Think differently about your purchases. Every penny you and I spend makes a political statement.  Take time to look ‘behind the name’. Understand what your purchase means to others.

Is this a difficult concept to wrap your mind around? Yes. However, once you take time to understand everything that happens behind the products we purchase and realize the power of every dollar you spend, then you can begin to govern like no government ever will!

Behind the Burger:

Our sensational appetite for Whoppers, Big Macs and Wendy’s burgers is chomping at the hills of our nation’s wild horses; people eat approximately 200 billion burgers a year! The United States has a population of a little over 307 million; “Modern plants can process 800,000 pounds of hamburger meat a day, from many thousands of different cattle”. Last year the U.S. Population Ate 26.4 Billion Pounds of Beef Cattle! And according to ‘Freakonomics, The Hidden Side of Everything’, “Our Future Looks Fat; Study Predicts Nearly Half the U.S. Population Will be Obese by 2030”.

About 45 million beef cattle roam some 870 million acres, more than two thirds of the land mass in our seventeen westernmost states. There are about 33,700 wild horses and 4,700 burros roaming on BLM ranges in 10 Western states.  The Bureau of Land Management says, if these horses were left on their own, the population would explode. Let’s see, 45 million beef cattle and 33,700 wild horses…and why is the BLM focusing on the wild horse population? Chomp! Chomp! Oh, by the way, there is a huge difference in the way cattle and horses graze.  I’m not saying to stop eating beef…just slow down! Try eating only ‘organic’ and eat less.

The changes needed today will go beyond much of what we have loved and coveted. We have a couple of choices when it comes to the changes we need. We can choose to leave a bright and shiny world; full of everything healthy and beautiful; or, continue chomping away at the heals of our world, leaving a sick and fearful world. This is difficult journey; making time to study before you make a purchase. The upside: You can participate in governing this planet with every penny you spend.

Look closely at the CHANGE that is ahead for all of us; the heart and soul of what life is about, not just what it looks and smells like; new doors to how we connect are opening. Welcome. ‘What happens to the least of us, happens to all of us’.  Me, I’m just a ‘whimsical kid’ that keeps dreaming. Penny Politics works! Try it on and see how it feels!

Happy Wild Horse Trails!

The Food Industry And What They Don’t Want You To Know!

superstock_1538r-7008Lets take a long look into centuries of food industry practices. Practices which began innocently enough, but, in many instances have developed into a dark and dangerous business; endangering the planet and it’s inhabitants!

The food industry continually strives to cut costs and expenses in order to increase profit; they hypnotizie the population with their glossy color ads and their promise of miracle foods’; all the while their GREED seeps in a sea of muck! This will become very clear if you are brave enough to follow the slippery trail.

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Cattle Abuse in Slaughterhouse

“LOS ANGELES – An undercover video showing crippled and sick animals being shoved with forklifts has led to the largest beef recall in the United States and a scramble to find out if any of the meat is still destined for school children’s lunches.”

Watching ‘NBC’s Today’ show about animal abuse in a slaughterhouse; I’m horrified! I’m reminded of Dr. Michael W. Fox and his work at The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) where I was privileged to work along side Dr. Fox in a quest to identify humane sustainable agriculture practices for livestock and poultry.

I’d never thought much about what livestock and poultry go through before it gets to the table. But after I became acquainted with Dr. Fox; the horrific nature of ‘Factory Farming’ became very clear. The dark side of this seldom viewed industry made my mission to find sustainable practices in livestock and poultry rearing imperative and to look to a more vegetarian diet.

The live images screaming out of the television on NBC’s Today’ show were horrific, however, I’ve seen much worse. This is not one isolated case; I’ve seen more proof than anyone would care to see. People should be made to see more of where our food comes from; how it’s produced and how the animals are treated.

Wendell Berry writes:

An agriculture can not survive long at the expense of the natural systems that support it and the provide it with models. A Culture cannot survive long at the expense of either its agricultural or its natural sources. To live at the expense of the source of life is obviously suicidal. Though we have no choice but to live at the expense of other life, it is necessary to recognize the limits and dangers involved: past a certain point in a unified system, “other life” is our own.

The definitive relationships in the universe are thus not competitive but interdependent. And from a human point of view they are analogical. We can build one system only within another. We can have agriculture only within nature, and culture only within agriculture. At certain points these systems have to conform with one another or destroy one another.

Dr. Fox writes:

Currently agriculture, along with all the natural wisdom and empathy that our farmer-ancestors and earlier hunter-gatherers acquired (and, with such wisdom and empathy, were deeply religious), is being lost–to high-tech agribusiness. From culture to technocracy: from sensibility to money, power, and control. The evolution of factory farming is a natural consequence of our culture’s materialistic and objectifying attitude toward nature. Consequently, humanity no longer acts as part of a unified field of being. By not acting so, we destroy this unity, violating the ecological laws of nature and the ethical and spiritual principles of our forebears. Factory farming is a second Industrial Revolution.

Thanks to the national attention brought to us by the media and film taken by the HSUS; the images are a mere glimpse of the ‘tip of the iceberg’! This is NOT a single isolated case! The trail of farm animals on the way to our table tops is paved with misery and cruelty. I urge you to stop and think about the food choices you make. Do you really need to eat that ‘Whopper’ or ‘Mac burger’ everyday. Do you give a thought to the suffering of the animals who went into it? Pain and suffering went into the meat on your plate! Do you give a darn?! Would you dare take a close look at where they live; what they are fed; the medications they receive on a daily basis?

Stay tuned, I’m going to take you to the dark side of livestock and poultry rearing. I’ll also take you to the other side and introduce you to ranchers who rear livestock and poultry with respect. I’ll give you answers on what you can do to make change to your diet.