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Under the category: "You’ve got to be kidding me"!?!
Posted by: McQ on Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Sometimes you just take your hat off, scratch your head and appeal to heaven for some enlightenment when you see things such as this:
The Bush administration said Tuesday it will fight to keep meatpackers from testing all their animals for mad cow disease.

The Agriculture Department tests fewer than 1 percent of slaughtered cows for the disease, which can be fatal to humans who eat tainted beef. A beef producer in the western state of Kansas, Creekstone Farms Premium Beef, wants to test all of its cows.

Larger meat companies feared that move because, if Creekstone should test its meat and advertised it as safe, they might have to perform the expensive tests on their larger herds as well.

The Agriculture Department regulates the test and argued that widespread testing could lead to a false positive that would harm the meat industry.

A federal judge ruled in March that such tests must be allowed. U.S. District Judge James Robertson noted that Creekstone sought to use the same test the government relies on and said the government didn't have the authority to restrict it. - A federal judge ruled in March that such tests must be allowed. The ruling was scheduled to take effect June 1, but the Agriculture Department said Tuesday it would appeal, effectively delaying the testing until the court.
First question - Why?

Second question - Why?

Third question ... well you get the idea.

Anyone - does this make any sense to you whatsoever?

To recap - a small beef producer wants to test its own product to ensure it doesn't have a disease that is potentially fatal to humans. Most humans would consider that a good thing.

Big producers don't want to do that, because that would raise the cost of production. Understandable. Not particularly commendable, but, unfortunately, understandable.

Why is government butting in at all? And more importantly, why is it butting in to fight the little guy and try to stop him from doing more inspections?

If government is all about protecting our liberties from force or fraud, seems they'd be backing this to the hilt.

But they're not, are they? This has become a special-interest democracy. Any guess who the special interest is in this one? Won't pay to have their cattle tested to protect the consumer, but sure will pitch a penny in the old campaign war chest, won't they? And then what? Use the force of government to stop something which might put them at a competitive disadvantage.

OK, acknowledged, that's pure conjecture, but it sure does seem that it might have some traction, doesn't it - unless you can come up with a different scenario for this foolishness.
 
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The Agriculture Department regulates the test and argued that widespread testing could lead to a false positive that would harm the meat industry.
Not to mention the blood supply. I already cannot donate blood since I was in Europe in the early 1980s.

In this particular case, I could see mandatory 100% testing shortly after the first few false positives. Better safe than sorry, no matter what the cost. (The last sentence is mild sarcasm.)
 
Written By: Mark A. Flacy
URL: http://
In this particular case, I could see mandatory 100% testing shortly after the first few false positives. Better safe than sorry, no matter what the cost. (The last sentence is mild sarcasm.)
Again, it’s a voluntary act by a meat producer. No one is suggesting 100% or even widespread testing here.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
"Special-interest democracy" ... good one. I’m going to have to borrow that term.

Reminds me of an Army Civil Affairs conference I attended a few months back where a CA CPT told us his story from Afghanistan of how dysfunctional the greater government has been in helping out the mission.

He wanted to help stimulate the Afghanistan economy and move them away from opium production. The obvious answer to him was textiles. Afghan rugs, right? Through proper channels, he pushed up an appeal to the appropriate US department to help implement his plan to stand up the Afghan textile industry - I disremember exactly, but I believe it was this one: OTEXA (http://otexa.ita.doc.gov/). The answer he got back was a ’no can do’, that they couldn’t be a party to the US textile industry failing to sell one less rug in the global marketplace because their department helped a foreign country become a competitive supplier.

Needless to say, this CA CPT was angry and frustrated over this experience, and led him to question who on our side seriously is, and is not, trying to win this war. Special-interest democracy, indeed. Won’t help out the farmer much, but I hope LTG Lute can at least help reign in the special interests hijacking his part of our government’s purview.

 
Written By: Eric Chen
URL: http://
"Larger meat companies feared that move because, if Creekstone should test its meat and advertised it as safe, they might have to perform the expensive tests on their larger herds as well.

The Agriculture Department regulates the test and argued that widespread testing could lead to a false positive that would harm the meat industry."
Mr. McQuain, you have been had by a liberal reporter. Your first clue should have been: "A federal judge ruled..."

This report is a victim of liberal biased reporting. See the clues: "Larger meat companies" "feared"? "harm the meat industry"?

Stop and reason sensibly for a moment. You see the danger from liberal wackos and GW.

The USDA perceives the same danger as a result of the marketing efforts of this meat producer. Follow the logical steps: 1) They advertise that their meat is the ONLY meat that is proven safe and you should take no chances. 2) Stupid urban liberal wackos gladly pay the premium for this "safe" beef (Do you think the premium will be limited to the cost of testing? You don’t understand marketing). 3) Stupid urban liberals demand that the expensive tests be performed on ALL meat. 4) USDA says that such testing is unnecessary (as they are now doing). 5) Liberals sense a chance to take a shot at the Bush Administration and hire otherwise reputable scientists to do studies showing that people can die of mad cow disease from eating untested meat. 6) Politicians take up the cry - books are written. 7) Sensible scientists are fired and intimidated into silence. 8) Mandatory testing of every morsel of beef sold is mandated. 9) Families are prohibited from eating home-raised beef (potential child abuse - children removed from homes, etc.) 10) Gun control freaks demand a prohibition of untested wild game eating. (11) Why isn’t every chicken tested for something?

There is a real danger to anyone who is struck by an errant piece of satellite. Why not have everyone file a route plan before taking an evening stroll?

We must have reasonable limits and the current rules are that reasonable limit.


 
Written By: Robert Fulton
URL: http://
Robert Fulton deomonstrates why the corporatocrats looove them some Libertarians.
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
Fulton, that was ridiculous. You’re no better than the liberals who want to coddle everyone into complacency. Anytime you advocate anything that is a barrier to adults thinking for themselves, you’re an enemy of humanity.

 
Written By: Grimshaw
URL: http://
Mr. McQuain: I rest my case. When the liberals stand up to be counted...
"Anytime you advocate anything that is a barrier to adults thinking for themselves..."
I am advocating a barrier to wackos removing my right to think for myself. Or at least I think I am.
 
Written By: Robert Fulton
URL: http://
It is statisticly likely that BSE is present in American beef. Random testing is fine although I think an increase in the percentage of carcasses tested would be advisable. If someone wants to test all his animals then let him and let him charge a premium for it. If people want to pay for it they will, if not they won’t. It is a free market after all. The main thing is that you must not fool yourselves into believing that BSE does not occur in American cattle. The cahnces are it does, you just have to make sure you hav the procedures in place to minimise outbreaks.

Or just stop eating beef
 
Written By: snafu
URL: http://
We must have reasonable limits and the current rules are that reasonable limit.
And they must be enforced by the government and anyone who breaks these rules must be prosecuted, because they are acting against the best interests of the nation. These rules are here for your own protection as decided for you by the government, because the government knows best. These rules act to protect you from creeping government powers.
 
Written By: unaha-closp
URL: http://warisforwinning.blogspot.com/
This is like the people who want to inspect every shipment into the USA. Not gonna happen. If it did, the price of goods would rise substantially. But its a good schtick to show your national security bona fides (see also, invading Pakistan.)

I am reading The Undercover Economist and Robert Fulton is right that this is simply an attempt to market their beef as "the safest" which is fine on the one hand, but if we do end up with 100% testing, its not very smart overall.

BSE is pretty easy to avoid: DON’T EAT BRAINS AND SPINAL COLUMNS

(Though I guess for those who love the cow brain tacos, this would be the specialist slaughterhouse they would need to use.)

Now, if we did have 100% testing and because the volume demand went up the tests got super cheap and fast, then I guess I would say its no big deal. But I doubt it can really be that cheap.

 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
When I first heard this story, I had the same reaction. Government interfering in what a private company wants to do.

However, there may be a valid government involvement here, but not I believe to prevent the test.

The problem the government perceives is one of marketing, namely that the small company will advertise "100% tested", which will IMPLY that other companies, which only have 1% testing, aren’t as safe.

But the government is allowed to regulate "false" advertising. So rather than prevent the company from testing all it’s beef, why not simply prohibit them from making it an advertising ploy? The government believes that 1% testing is virtually as safe as 100% testing, so just prevent them from marketing "100% tested". Sure, people will know anyway, but only those who really care.

On a more general note, this is just another example of how government is ALWAYS for the big and powerful, if you give it enough power. Because the more power government has, the more it’s worth to buy it off, giving power to those with the money to do so.
 
Written By: charles
URL: http://www.twoconservatives.blogspot.com
Don’t have any of the details on the current go around with this issue.

In the past the main opposition to creekstone’s testing is that it would provide a non tariff trade barriers used by foreign countries to keep US beef out of their domestic markets.

With respect to safety the money the chances of getting BSE from eating beef are vanishingly small. If creekstone wanted to improve safety they would spend more money on testing for bacterial contamination not BSE infection.
 
Written By: TJIT
URL: http://
Here we have a beautiful example of liberal...I don’t know what...*ssh*l*ness.

First liberal retief knee-jerks and then realizes: "Hey, this isn’t as simple as it seemed."

Then liberal retief shuts his hole and says no more. No: "Hey, I did not understand this issue." Or "Hey, maybe you have a point." Or "Hey, maybe I was mistaken." Or, "Hey, yes, you are right as far as..."

Just shuts his stupid mouth. More than any other characteristic of liberals, that is the one I dislike most. Shutting their mouths when they are wrong.

Think about it.
 
Written By: Robert Fulton
URL: http://
Robert Fulton, what are you talking about?

McQ points to an attempt by "big" meatpackers to use the government to stiffle competition and protect their own less safe practices. Then you wade in with a crazy*ss slippery slope argument about how if we allow one company to test 100% of their beef, pretty soon the stormtroopers will be coming to get Bessie the cow from our backyard, thus demonstrating how useful Libertarians are to corporate interests. Lobbyists who are perfectly happy with government intrusions, as long as they are on the side of the corporations, love to hear you complain about the evils of govenment and tell us how the rules they favor are reasonable limits.

No force on earth is weaker than the feeble strength of one, brother.

And two things re your lack of apologies plaint. One, if some people could learn to just shut up when they’re demonstably and irredeemably wrong, that would be progress. And two, how many mea culpas have there been now that Plame’s covert status has been confirmed six ways from Sunday?
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
How is this any different than an "Organic" beef label?

Which leads to statements like this from one company.
Our Organic Beef and organic meat comes only from animals born and raised on D**** Farms. We believe natural organic beef is the safest meat you can buy. The organic certification program is a fully verifiable production system that collects information on the history of every animal in the program, including its breed history, veterinary care, and feed. No antibiotics, growth-promoting hormones, steroids or animal by-products are added to our organic forage or grain. This means they are never fed rendered animal by-products from slaughter-houses that could have been contaminated with BSE (Mad-Cow-Disease). (BSE is transmitted to cattle through feed containing animal by-products from contaminated animals.)
Many times big business loves regulation if it keeps the competition at a disadvantage. But when the table turns they cry bloody murder.
 
Written By: Jay Evans
URL: http://
I am advocating a barrier to wackos removing my right to think for myself. Or at least I think I am.
Hey Bob… Check your meds, man.

Here we have a beautiful example of liberal...I don’t know what...*ssh*l*ness.
You’re getting away from your usual “Liberal Narrative” drumbeat. Which has me concerned for your mental stability.

Come on, man. Snap out of it. Tell us how one company wanting to test its product is all apart of the Liberal Narrative to have us turn into an Islamic state.

Trust me.
You’ll feel better.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Creekstone sued the USDA because the USDA doesn’t want to come off the exclusive rights to BSE testing in the US. Creekstone wants to be able to purchase the BSE testing kits for use on its own product. That way Creekstone can claim "100% tested" in marketing beef to SKorea and Japan.

I don’t have a problem with Creekstone (or any other beef producer/abbatoir) testing its product if that product is subsequently export only. For beef sold domestically, I’d rather keep the BSE testing genie in the USDA bottle. Now, if Creekstone wanted to become a USDA-affiliated testing facility, that would be another matter entirely but that is not what their suit is about.

The morale of this story is simple. Anytime you see a headline such as "White House fighting to keep KS meatpacker from testing its beef," you are being tested for BDS.
 
Written By: Arcs
URL: http://
I would assume that in addition to its own testing, the USDA also does the random test on Creekstone cattle. Otherwise Creekstone wouldn’t be in compliance with current regulations. The effect would be the USDA double testing a small sample of the cattle.

It does seem to be a silly move by the government.

Creekstone wouldn’t be able to market as 100% safe, only 100% tested. 100% safe would get them sued the first time someone caught some other parasite or other disease from their beef.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com/
Mr. Mahone, I take it from your comment that you breathlessly awaiting an update on documenting how the revised LN on Iraq is spreading. Herewith:


Think Progress gets on the new LN bandwagon:
”Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) made an unannounced trip to Iraq today, telling reporters, “what I see here today is progress, significant progress.” Hours later, he was confronted by U.S. soldiers with a very different message: “We don’t feel like we’re making any progress.”
McClatchy reports tonight on Spc. David Williams, who collected questions for Lieberman from 30 other troops.
At the top of his note card was the question he got from nearly every one of his fellow soldiers:
“When are we going to get out of here?”
Yep, as the LN says: we need to “support these troops” and get out of Iraq! Apparently the McClatchy news service is now on board too.

One more note in passing. As we are inundated with these statements of "boots on the ground" in furthering the LN, ask yourself how come the "we’re winning" statements that these same boots made in the past were not newsworthy, but the "get out now" statements we are seeing currently are. Guess it’s a journalism thing, eh?
 
Written By: Robert Fulton
URL: http://
"Stupid urban liberal wackos gladly pay the premium for this "safe" beef..."

I plead guilty only to being urban, but I already pay a little extra for beef without antibiotics, etc., and might also pay a little more for not having to worry about mad cow.

"Stupid urban liberals demand that the expensive tests be performed on ALL meat."

Still only urban, and I really don’t give a da** what you eat, although I might suggest something.

*********************

"These rules are here for your own protection as decided for you by the government, because the government knows best"

Actually I believe the FDA and meat inspection were enacted by popular demand. Read "The Jungle" for the reason. It used to be required reading where I went to school. However, if you like, I would gladly support a system where beef clearly labeled "processed in uninspected plants by possibly tubercular workers" is available for your dining pleasure. Bon Appetit. Incidentally, how do you feel about eating in restaurants?

********************
"BSE is pretty easy to avoid: DON’T EAT BRAINS AND SPINAL COLUMNS"

But how can I compete on "Fear Factor", or eat sausage? And what about zombies?
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
"That way Creekstone can claim "100% tested" in marketing beef to SKorea and Japan."

So then they can demand all US beef be 100% tested even as they don’t test their own beef to that level. Excellllllent.

Actually, the US government does a good job to get our beef back on the shelves after BSE scares. McDonald’s only had to switch to Aussie beef for a few months.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Hey, I asked for a response. It behooves me to comment about the response that I got.
”Robert Fulton, what are you talking about?”
This is not encouraging. I take it as a general rebuttal. What I was talking about, agree or not, seemed to me to be painfully evident.
“...an attempt by "big" meatpackers to use the government to stiffle (sic) competition...”
Yes, as viewed through the liberal prism, one could characterize this situation in that manner. Does anyone really think that the “big” producers fear that someone developing a product that appeals only to wackos willing to spend money to be “sure” when there is no evidence that testing is needed. A niche market, to be sure.
” Lobbyists ...love to hear you complain about the evils of govenment (sic) and tell us how the rules they favor are reasonable limits.”
Seems to me the issue is whether or not the rules are reasonable; whomever loves or hates them.
”No force on earth is weaker than the feeble strength of one, brother.”
Not sure about this one. Seems to not be “David and Goliath”. Maybe an obscure socialist reference?

Finally, if one reads anything outside the liberal bubble, one is aware of the fact that Ms. Plame’s status is still unclear. I suppose you simply wanted me to state that to confirm something in your mind about me. Done.

Best response I can come up with.
 
Written By: Robert Fulton
URL: http://
Robert,

I think you have lost your way here. The company has the right to test 100% of its beef and to say it has done so right on the package.

If that results in scenario you claim coming about, that is the fault of the politicians and the electorate, and no grounds at all for prohibiting this company from doing what it wants to do.

Your proposed scenario has all the intellectual vigor and constitutionality of the Fairness Doctrine or McCain-Feingold.

I am in fact still not convinced you are putting us on, so nanny-state, tinfoil propellor beanie, and over-the-top silly was your post.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
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Written By: Shirley
URL: http://www.google.com/
I love the colors you use, and the images are vivid and energetic. Great work, good site too. I’ll be in touch!
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