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“The fact is the BLM and Welfare Ranchers are now stooping to levels of coercion and bully tactics to keep functioning as they have in the past. But the truth has an odd way of seeking power over misinformation, lies, and criminality. . .” — John Cox, Horse Advocate
Many people assume, since most of the western landscape is given over to livestock production, that ranching must be economically important. But, as economist Thomas Power points out “. . . the livestock industry contributes almost nothing to western economies, even at the local level.”
The western rancher is dependent on what can be classified as no more than a welfare program. Not so ironic, the low fees paid by ranchers to graze upon federal lands only the tip of the iceberg, so to speak.
“Other subsidies include taxpayer-supported research at western land grant universities, as well as agricultural exemptions that lower property taxes paid by ranchers. Most often Welfare Ranchers pay no tax at all on their subsidies, even though nothing more than profit. There are handouts to help with nearly every problem: drought relief, low-interest agricultural loans, emergency livestock feed programs, emergency grazing on Conservation Reserve Program lands, to name a few.
Even many of the fences crisscrossing the West’s “open” spaces are paid for by American taxpayers, and not so surprising, the maintaining of those fences costs taxpayers millions of dollars a year in subsidies, going directly to the Welfare Rancher Grazing Permit Holder. Scam!
Seeing the actual Welfare Rancher invoices and budgets simply makes one’s head spin, with a big neon-sign in the brain that screams — SCAM – SCAM – SCAM. Please read the rest over at his blog »