Wild Horse Education

HR 1668, Not A “Good Thing” For Wild Horses

There are several bills that might look like “good things,” but are not. When you know how things already work, and the people that wield the frame, you can see why certain claims are made. You begin to wonder WHY there is no equity in process.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has multiple frames to accept work product and materials from public, organizations, states and counties. They already have multiple frames to create, in cooperation, that includes people and supplies. Water improvements for wildlife or cows are done with hunting groups and ranchers. We even see donations of seed after fires by livestock groups and those with an interest in hunting. Paperwork (NEPA product) is done by mines and supplied to the agency. If we look at wild horse adoption events, like the ones done at Reno Rodeo, we see that “collaboration” done there as well.

The only time we seem to run into hurdles is when we hit things that groups like wild horse advocates or land conservation groups want to happen. When you look at people that work for BLM, and the organizations they belong to or volunteer for, this begins to make a lot of sense. We don’t need a bill to assist in taking money to build shelters in holding, we need the Office of the Inspector General to look at BLM.

The mechanism for those things to happen is already in place. We don’t need HR 1668, we need fair and equitable treatment for all interests.

Wild horse organizations that want to donate volunteer workers or equipment? Wild Horse Education has already done it. The mechanism exists. Yes, we had to jump a million hurdles and “not talk much” about it while we did it (things other interests are not required to do) but we did it. We’ve learned a lot.

The mechanism exists. Perhaps it is because there are so few opportunities where advocates can participate, are not informed to process and discouraged from participation, that there are problems?


Shade structures and wind breaks? The mechanism already exists. BLM does not have to become a nonprofit to take public help.

Shelters in holding facilities? How often have wild horse organizations said they would donate workers and the supplies? BLM claimed that “studies” had to be done and there was no mechanism to accept those things and that they were going to build one. The studies are done BLM, take the help.You say too many want to help, we cant pick one over another? Lame excuse. Give every org that wants to help a facility, plenty to chose from, cooperative or assistance agreement. Open it up for contract bid and orgs can bid “zero dollars” as the cost for the work,  that’s another option. You have the mechanisms.

Just think for a minute. Advocacy orgs helping build shelters might get some press for the org and some support. The orgs might actually learn how to engage constructive process. You might find that can help reduce conflicts. You inhibit it, why? Is it because your friends don’t like them or they pointed out you violated the law in the past? Or did they violate the law  or a policy and are still allowed to engage process? (there are several examples where you allow that very thing, but deny advocates opportunity).

We know a number of nonprofits raised money for shelters a couple of years back. We bet with summer coming they would like the chance to use those funds?

That’s this bill, but it is NOT needed.

Refusing help because you don’t “like” someone, they point out a mistake  or because they pointed out how you violated the law in the past, but take help from a buddy? BLM employees really should read the CFR’s. The projects your buddies help with, like reseeding or water improvements, might be great things, but you have to offer equitable opportunity. When you don’t? That’s a problem. And the mask worn by an interest that in truth is NOT wild horse advocacy? That wont hold under scrutiny. Let’s stop the shenanigans. Scrutiny is costly and a time waster and is NOT conducive to a healthy human climate. We’ve been there before, do we have to do it again?

What this bill would allow BLM to do is put up that donate button. It would allow BLM to control the money. It would allow BLM to put it into the hands of a “board” that they chose. If you look at the bill it sure looks like the same criteria that the current Advisory Board operates under. How has that worked out for the best interests of wild horses? How many seats are actually held with the horses interest? How many are held by other interests? Under political sway, at the discretion of whatever political agenda is in force, seats could be pulled and outfitted with whomever suits the agenda. Would that money be used for projects that help horses, or those other interests?

Would BLM, that controls all messaging on the issue and has a donate button, use that to hurt environmental organizations? We see this as something that needs serious consideration.

Would BLM use this to fund wild horse removals by taking donations from counties, states and ranchers? (note: how do you think we lost the Sheldon mustangs so fast?)

If you take into account the mechanism exists already, this bill has other motives. We see this bill being used as a place that could get bipartisan support because it sounds good, but in practice is repetitive and could be a disaster. The mechanisms already exist, they are simply NOT engaged in any equitable fashion with all interests.

BLM needs to FIX their broken federal grazing program NOT look for ways to hide, complain, allow more big influence from big money interests.This bill simply allows big money more control and more opportunity to corrupt the system.

They need to start treating us all fairly and allow full participation by all interests.

Tell your representative to vote NO on HR 1668. They need to begin to hold the agency accountable to equitable and fair process in the mechanisms that already exist. IF Republicans say we have too much redundancy in regulations and protocol? This bill represents that in spades. It also points clearly at how interests are NOT treated fairly in process. Link to find your representatives: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/


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Categories: Wild Horse Education