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Texas Agriculture Talks: Top 10 blogs for 2013

Texas Agriculture Talks: Top 10 blogs for 2013

By Mike Barnett

2013 is gone but not forgotten. But it soon will be as we dig deeper into the New Year.

I decided to look back at 2013 through the eyes of Texas Agriculture Talks, posting the 10 favorite columns as decided by you, our readers. Gene Hall and I started the blog in 2009 to provide a proactive voice for agriculture, whose methods were being chopped apart by groups and individuals with an ax to grind. We found our voice in those tough beginning years. And although we’ve mellowed a bit with age, we’re not afraid to speak out—loudly—for all the farmers and ranchers who raise food and fiber. We’ve since expanded our efforts to include guest bloggers.

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HSUS: 72 percent of Americans can be wrong

HSUS: 72 percent of Americans can be wrong

By Mike Barnett

You’ve all seen the commercials. The heartbreaking image of a pitiful puppy or kitten fills the screen. A sorrowful song plays in the background. Statistics of animal abuse are narrated by a compassionate voice.  Your eyes tear up and your checkbook opens. And the cash registers at the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) go Ka-ching Ka-ching.

The implication of the HSUS commercials is that monthly donation emotionally wrenched from your pocketbook is going to provide funds for pet shelters. You would be mostly wrong.

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HSUS fundraising confusing to those who support animal care

HSUS fundraising confusing to those who support animal care

The animal shelter here in Waco, Texas, is in trouble.  Donations are down and more pets are abandoned in this bad economy. Many people think the bulging war chest of the wealthy Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) might ease these situations, which are occurring all over the nation.  Not likely.

In Sunday’s Waco Tribune-Herald is a letter to the editor from Diana Culp, claiming to be a former director with HSUS.  She refers to “common misconceptions” that national animal groups are “umbrella groups for pet shelters.”  Culp says they are not and in fact send only one percent of the funds they collect to local pet shelters.

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HSUS takes out after Beef Checkoff

HSUS takes out after Beef Checkoff

By Gene Hall

What’s an animal rights organization like the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) doing in a legal battle over the Beef Checkoff?

HSUS has decided to involve itself in a lawsuit that includes an officer of the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM), USDA, the Cattlemen’s Beef Board and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA). HSUS has inserted itself into what could be interpreted as an internal beef business squabble.

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The farce of ‘Meatless Monday’ – and other animal rights fantasies

The farce of ‘Meatless Monday’ – and other animal rights fantasies

By Gene Hall

I sometimes enjoy a bowl of broccoli soup, rice and beans (though they’re a lot better with ham) or other non-meat fare.  I make it a point to never do this on PETA’s and HSUS’s pointless holiday, Meatless Monday.  Perhaps I would reconsider if HSUS joined me in Sirloin Saturday, Filet Mignon Friday, T-Bone Tuesday, Chicken and Dumplings Sunday or Pork Chop Wednesday.  Sorry, I couldn’t alliterate the last two.

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